Friday, May 26, 2006
1) attacking in the crit and getting a 30m gap (yay!), crashing myself out of the race 3 corners later (aawww)
2) Attacking in Sat.'s RR and getting a 1:20 gap on the field (yippee!), being led the wrong direction in the race by the lead vehicle and losing at least half of my advantage (shucks)
3) Attacking with 2.5k to go in Sat.'s race and having a 40m gap and 1500m to go between me and ultimate glory (oooohhh!), being caught by a schmuck and pipped at the line for 2nd place (looooser)
As for Sun.'s race, the highlight for me was definitely our leadout train heading toward the base of the final climb. Having all 6 of us in a line smoking it with Toyota, Health Net and all the other 100+ riders taking a back seat to the Priority Health Express was exhilerating for me. Nice work boys - good practice for the big 'uns coming up. A very special thanks to Don, Margy, Don, Doreen, Liz, and Z-Man for coming to cheer on the team in our Arkansas campaign. It meant soooo much to me to have you guys there! I hope it was worth your while.
Now it's home for 9 days to rest and recupe. Yeah right! 12hrs and 380ks in the last 2 days - beat that Tommy!! It does feel great to be home and back to homeostasis. The weather has been fantastic here in Boulder and I've done my best to take advantage.
Here I was trying to take a picture of the swollen Boulder Creek, but some hottie got in the way.
Scotty and I enjoying the view and the weather at 9000+ ft during our 6 hour day "at the office"
Here is Frank and I after our first ever motorpacing experience. This is actually what I look like when I'm faking a smile while trying to avoid passing out from exhaustion/dehydration.
I'm posting this for legal purposes: this was my attempt to catch a vicious canine in the act of trying to bite my leg off as I was riding back to our Fayetteville place (this happened roughly 4-5 times per ride by various dogs). "Fido" had just given up on me to avoid being smushed by the oncoming car. The reason he looks so small is that he's actually 1/4 mile away from me at this point.
So, upcoming races for the team:
June 1 - Captech (VA)
June 3 - CSC Invite (NJ?)
June 4 - Lancaster (PA)
June 8 - Reading (PA)
June 11 - Philly (PA)
June 13-18 - Tour de Beauce (somewhere in Canada, eh)
theme: big, big, big
I won't be racing the CSC Invite or Lancaster due to roster restrictions in the race, but I will still be the ultimate cheerleader (think skirt and pompoms). Here's to tailwinds and no bad luck!
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
You may or may not recognize this bloke, but he is a brilliant photographer from the Miami area. If you have a chance to check out his work, I highly recommend it:
I know stereotypes are wrong, but this home sure looks Arkansawn, doesn't it? This one is about 1/2 mile from where we're staying right now.
I pirated this from Phil Zajicek's site, but I just can't help it this was too funny not to pass on. Here is the english version of Jan Ullrich's blog. Die hard cycling fans might not get quite the amusement out of it that we did.
Okay, possibly getting tired now. It's worth a shot anyway.
Monday, May 15, 2006
iamTedKing rode exceptionally well also with a killer 4th place in Fri. road race and spending 80 miles or so out in a break during Sat.'s RR only to be caught with 4k to go. It was a heartbreaker as they would have surely stayed away if there would have been full cooperation and organization in the break. Robbie and Eddy also rode well late in the races in attempts of delivering Richie to the sprint in good position. And of course Brian was Brian - doing everything in his power to help us along: covering moves, leading the chase, getting bottles, etc. All the things that never show up in the results or the race reports but are essential to a good team result. As for me, I was somewhere in between a useless lump of shit and a valuable team rider. The only times I was present at the front the entire tour was in a break of 8 guys late in Fri's RR and for about half of a lap during the crit. The road race break looked like it might stick at first but there were too many people not pulling through for us to take it to the line. That in combination with me cramping up caused me to sit up and wait for the field. This conservative, no-presence-at-the-front style of racing would have been acceptable (not good, but at least tolerable) if I would have done a decent TT on Sat. afternoon. But alas, I was crap in the TT going 5s faster than Glen Mitchell who was so sick that he didn't start the crit the next day. In my defense, my brakes were rubbing the entire TT and my pedal broke halfway through so that I was pedaling one-legged the second half...oh, and I think I had a slow leak in the front but I can't be sure. So, there seems to be some bug that is running rampant through our team. As mentioned, Glen "I am a Racing Machine" Mitchell was out of commision the whole week, TommyTommy has been puking or more recently had loose bowel movements (which he loves to describe to us in detail) to the extent that he's not getting any nurishment from eating. The Kings have both had illnesses that seem to come and go quickly but then reoccur without warning. I have been dealing with what I think is allergies for 2 weeks now - slight cough and occasional runny nose that hasn't gotten better or worse with time. Bottom line: annoying but we're feeling that we're getting it out of the way now so we won't have to deal with any of this come Philly Week and Beauce. how's that for a positive spin? Okay, so overall, I'd have to say I had a good time racing this weekend due in part to my dad, uncle Don and Margie showing up to cheer us on. It was really nice to see them, especially during this rather long hiatus from home. I was pretty down after the TT, but the fact is that I felt absolutely satisfied with my effort and the most important thing right now is that I got some good racing in and some good experience to boot. Oh, and to end on another positive - Brent Meister General, Scott Stewart (U23 team) and the Lees-McRae Cycling Team won Collegiate Nationals again this past weekend. Brent won the road race, team time trial, and won the bunch sprint in the crit (letting his teammate win the race from the breakaway). I believe that makes 126 National titles for Brent - or somewhere in that ballpark. I'm sure all the competing coaches and underclassmen had a huge party to celebrate his departure from collegiate racing. Alright, thanks for reading. 7 days and counting till I'm reunited with Kira, Boulder, and Masa...
Oh, and this is the team guilt trip of the day: this is Benno hard at work on our bikes since 10 a.m. or so today (Monday) while the racers have been lounging about aimlessly drinking coffee and "internetting" (a verb I learned from my sister) ALL FRIGGIN DAY! Thanks Ben.
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
Alright, I'll try and get some pics of the area in the next post, but here are some from the past week or so:
This one makes me laugh. This is Rich on the trainer on an 80 degree sunny day in the beautiful hills of northern Georgia. Is this what it takes to be a national champ??? At least he's outside, right?
This is some of the team with our host family Dave and Brenda who we stayed with after the Spartanburg crit. Dave likes to do ultra marathons and other crazy person events - so we fit right in.
Here is proof that Sheeds is fast on bikes AND in cars. Doh!
Oh yeah, we conquered it. I believe this was at 2700 ft. above sea level (or exactly 1/2 of what I sleep at in Boulder)
This is the highlight of Sunday's ride for Brian and me. Here we are passing the "sag wagon" of the Cheaha Challenge which means that we will get to the last aide station before they pack everything up. Translation: free pb&j, chips, and brownies for Sheeds and I!
Friday, May 05, 2006
In other news, my man Scott Nydam is ripping up the field at Tour of the Gila. If you're not following the daily action - be sure to check it out at www.tourofthegila.com
Alright, no pics today - I'm a slacker. However, there may be some shots of my mortal wounds showing up on other blogs...
Today's mantra: I love crits. I love crits. I love crits. I love crits.
Monday, May 01, 2006
Check out the pics below.
This pic doesn't really do it justice, but this is the e.r. parking lot with scrapes and dried blood on my face - mullet still intact.
Eddy getting aero on a spider - during post TT celebration time.
Brent's podium pic with other jersey holders - doesn't he look fast?!?
Jake living up to his namesake after consuming the amount of wine produced from 2 grapes.
Graham spending time in his favorite place: the break. This was during the 2nd critJake in a break later in that same crit. Shortly after this photo, Jake unleashed what was deemed "The most vicious attack of the race"