Sunday, May 23, 2010


I came out of last weekend with a cold, stayed home from work on Monday basically in bed, but proceeded to commute on Tues and Wed. I should have taken another day off to recover but the weather was just too darn nice!
At Buck Hill on Thursday Jack was drilling it. I didn't have the snap in my legs and was barely hanging on when in about 1 minute I crossed wheels with a lapped rider and had another lapped rider crash into me sending my OTB. Neither were really my fault or the fault of the lapped rider and that is part of racing especially at Buck Hill. Jack kept on it and got the win.
Saturday was the first MMBS race that saw a rain delayed start and peanut buttery tacky course for the the elite race. The sport riders had it rough right after the rain with some uber muddy conditions, but they pounded most of the rain out of the course for us. Thanks guys and gals! Doug Swanson has been doing more mtbking this year, and it showed as off the start I followed his wheel to a nice gap after 2 hard laps. The race was shortened from 5 to 4 laps to "preserve the course", and on the 3rd lap it was my turn to do some work in the blustery conditions. I put my head down and drilled it for that 3rd lap and managed to get a gap on Doug. The only thing I was certain of was that I did NOT want to sprint against him, as he wins almost every sprint he is in. The 4th lap was more of the same any I cruised home for the win. While the race was short, it sure wasn't easy. Props to the volunteers who stayed and made the right decision by not canceling the race.In other news, my brother Ben rocked a win in only his second race of the year out in the east coast Hudson to Highland Series. He said he lead from start to finish and said he felt strong all day. He is coming home in a couple weeks for some family, fun and racing; he will definitely be up at the front somewhere at the next 2 MMBS races in Afton and Du Lac.
I will be at Buck this Thurs, and heading to Rochester this weekend. Maybe the Rochester 29er crew will let me come on one of their secret training rides.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Trek Demos!

Trek is bringing the demo fleet to the Twin Cities for you to do real world testing on their best stuff.

Saturday, May 22 at the Freewheel Frolic – MNMBS Series Opener from 9:00 – 3:00
Sunday, May 23rd at Murphy Hanrehan from 10:00 – 3:00
Monday, May 24th at the Human Powered Trails (HPT) in La Crosse from 2:00 – 7:00

The men's and women’s demo rigs will be at all the events, and Jack Hinkens and I will be out at Murphy for some group riding and chilling/grilling on Sunday.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Back at it

Racing has resumed with rigor. On tap this past week were Buck Hill, the Cable Off Road Classic, and the Velo Rochester training camp (they still invite me despite me moving to Trek=).
Buck Hill on Thursday night was cool and rainy. We all slopped around in the mud a little and had fun. I was able to hold off a hard charging SamO, who is notoriously good in the slop, for the win.
On Friday I cruised up to Cable where Charly Tri hosts the Velo Rochester Team training camp every year on the same weekend as the CORC. This makes for very fun weekend of racing and riding one of the best trail systems in the US. The CORC was at 10am Sat, and we were lucky to get perfect weather and near perfect trail conditions. During the 3 mile gravel road lead out, I lead the entire way but not by choice. No one would come around me so I just set my own pace and I guess it was good enough for everyone else. Oh well, it worked out ok as I got the holeshot (my goal was to be in the first 5 wheels going in). After the first section of singletrack, I was with Scott KJ and Jack was ~15 seconds back. Scott pulled through nicely as we worked together through the only other significant gravel road section in the race. I was like "Scott, what the heck are 2 dads doing up here at the front of the race? Shouldn't the young kids with all the time and quality sleep be up here." We both got a good chuckle over that. I managed to get a little separation near the end of that road section and never looked back.
Oh and the course? It was demanding and so SWEET that I forgot I was racing. Time wise, it was probably 60-70% tight, twisty, rocky, rooty midwest-style singletrack. It was the kind of course that reminds me why I started riding mountain bikes.
Anyway, I cruised home for the win with a smile on my face. In the picture sequence below, my friends Dan Dittmer and Jake Richards are sprinting it out. I think the kid got it!
Sunday was a tour of several of the CAMBA trails with the Velo crew. Rock lake ROCKS!

A couple notes on different gear I am trying this year:
First, I tried the new Bontrager XR2 tires, which I will be using for general riding and less than ideal conditions, for the first time in slippery conditions at Buck. They hooked up pretty well, but not as good as a true mud tire.
Second, I finally got to race on my race tires (XR1 front XR0 rear)... simply awesome. Faster than the Racing Ralphs IMO.
Third, I am using a Fox RLC fork rather than a SID this year. It is stiffer, more tunable, and smoother than last years Rock Shox SID for sure, but I haven't ridden this years version.

Pics above are from Jay Richards.
Next up is another Thursday Saturday combo with Buck Hill and MMBS (formerly MNSCS) #1.