Wednesday, January 25, 2006
I forgot to mention my sponsor in the last post; Rochester Cycling and Fitness sponsors my racing. Matt, the owner is a family friend, and a bike guru. Before last year I asked him if he would be interested in sponsoring me and he didn’t hesitate. I really appreciate all he and his staff have done to help me out.
So I said I would continue the background info stuff again and today I felt like writing about equipment…I guess cause I stocked up for the year on disposables yesterday (chains, lube, tubes,etc) and I have a new bike coming in a couple weeks.
I have multiple bikes - my wife would say way to many already – but they all get ridden.
Trek Fuel: This is my favorite bike and I have done all my racing on it. There isn’t much left on this bike that is stock (only shifters and derailleurs). It is about 23.5 lbs. There are several distinct changes/upgrades that have drastically improved the performance of this race rig. First is the wheelset. I upgraded to Mavic Crossmax SLs. These babies kick ass. I have had them for more than 2 years and bought them slightly used…they still haven’t needed truing. While they aren’t the lightest (they are still very light) on the market, but they are the stiffest and most bombproof I have found. Second are the tires and the conversion to tubeless. I run standard 2.0 Kenda Karma DTC Stick E’s (480g’s claimed weight), but they are converted to tubeless using Stan’s sealant. This allows me to run 30 PSI without the risk of pinch flats. Third is the Fork. I switched out the wishy-washy SID race for the rock solid F80X. The F80X uses an inertial valve platform to be plush on rocky terrain and lockout in smooth areas. Also, the Fox is SO much stiffer than the SID. This stiffness really helps when railing corners.
Specialized Enduro: This bike is what I use for most of my off road training. It weights about 31 lbs and I run 800 gram tires on it. Basically after riding this thing, the fuel feels like a rocket. There are no highlights to speak of…this thing is a work horse and I only replace parts as needed.
Giant TCR Composite: This is my ‘road bike’…at least in theory. I do almost all my road riding on my fuel. I am most comfortable on the fuel and I enjoy riding it the most. However, the TCR is still a light fast bike that tops the scales at around 17.5 lbs.
Gary Fisher Big Sur: This was my first real mountain bike that I purchased back in 1999. The Sur gets no respect any more and I only keep it around for those nasty salty wet road rides in the winter…the shifters are broken, the drive train is shot, the wheels are untrue, the seat rails are bent, but that is what beaters are for!
The most exciting equipment news for me is my new ride. A Trek Elite 9.9 (I will call her the Niner Niner or just Niner)…it should be here in a few weeks and I will be sure to post a pick when it arrives. As with the fuel there will be upgrades=)
Other important equipment choices are Shimano shoes (the ones with the carbon sole), egg beaters pedals, and plenty of nasty old t-shirts for racing.