Wednesday, June 30, 2010


I mostly got everything race related in my initial post. I would like to add that Mylie Cyrus makes much better psych-up music than the death metal I hear pumping from most cars in the race parking lot. I rode from mpls to 'kato listening to K-dweeb. A couple notes: Usher has given up. His new stuff is pretty plain (OMG). Beyonce is both highly fine and highly musical. Lady Gaga is highly crazy and a Madonna wannabe.

My shifting is still frustrating. I spent about an hour trying to figure it out tonight to no avail. There seems to be a lot of friction in the cables. Shifting up the cassette takes about as much effort in the thumb as twisting off a beer cap. My front shifting is still solid, so I have 3 speeds, at least.

Cheers, y'all.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

MNMBS #4 short version

I had a great "no excuses"race today. Rogowski schooled me on the corners and in the mud while I pushed him on the climbs. In the beginning, I was first (at times second) up the hill. In the end I was gasping for air in a pretty solid effort. More to come...

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


I got a new cassette and chain. The XT cassette rivets interfered with the spokes on the ZTR race 29 wheelset. I noticed that the old XT cassette (also 770) had much shorter rivets. So, 5 minutes at the grinder, the wheels are happy again. I could not, however, make my shifting work well. Things are just not quite ok in that department.

Taking a lesson learned from last race, I'm bringing a spare wheelset with 29 X 1.9" tires. If the sport guys are coming off the course with lots of mud on them, the narrow tires are going on. Comaring the wheels, the ZTRs are waaaay lighter than my old Bontrager Rhythm Elite set. Luckily, the brake rotors line right up, so no adjustment will be necessary upon switching wheels.

Check out my new ass-kicking Bontrager Home Wrench repair stand:

Anybody want to buy a fishtank?

Saturday, June 19, 2010


I got to the race in Duluth and saw a bunch of really muddy, miserable looking Sport racers. My wife and I immediately talked about turning around and going home (in a way I'm glad I didn't). The parking lot was a mudfest. I needed to throw the Jeep in 4WD to navigate. There were quite a few racers milling around the ski chalet. Talking to them, I got the feeling I was in for a really weird race.

So I paid up and went for it. Off the line, I moved to the front and led up the hill. My legs felt great. I was ready to rip even after the hill. The mud came right after the crest of the hill. I started dismounting frequently while in the woods. Lots of people with better setups and better running ability passed me. At the end of the day, I finished 17th overall, 6th again in my age group. Nils Boberg finished 36 minutes in front of me. Good for you, dude! He is really fast, and must have had an ideal setup. The expert group was won by Jack Hinkens, almost an hour ahead of me on the exact same course. I would have brought up the rear in that group.

In the future, if I'm going to race in the mud, I'm going to do it with mud tires on an old wheelset. As it is, I learned about mud and I nabbed some series points bringing me into 3rd place in a very competitive group.

Photo courtesy of Dana Schoppe.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Mt. Du Lac - Short Version

Executive summary: I got up the first hill in first position with teammate Chris B. in tow. I hit the mud and began the death march. The whole thing was an experience - not exactly mountain biking. The course was literally 30% ridable. The weather has sucked more and more with each of the state races. More to come....

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


I went out what I thought was kind of hard. I did enough to enter the single track in 6th position in the 30-39 y/o wave. Then, I just couldn't hang. Last Saturday, I went to Afton with my friends, then I could push the middle chain ring in my highest or second highest cog. At the Afton race, I was relegated to my granny. I don't know, I may have just gassed myself on the first climb trying to stick with the top guys. In the end I ended up 6th place in my age group again, 28th overall. I have to say I am dissappointed I didn't do better than the first race. I thought I was a better climber. The thing is, all the comp guys are good climbers. Oh well. It was still a lot of fun. Toward the end, me and a guy from Wookie Juice had a great battle for position. I think he actually had me by 4 minutes due to the wave placing, but it was great motivation to keep racing.

This photo, from Dana Schoppe is just great:

Now, that guy was fast!! Until next time ....