Saturday, January 26, 2008

It's Rrrrracin' time!

Hello! Happy New Year and Cycling Season and all that! Off season is officially over. I was so "busy" w/ off season that I couldn't be bothered to post on the blog. I've stayed alive and well which is not always a given with me (though I had a couple of "close calls" that I'd rather not get into). I'm in Santa Rosa now for team camp which officially starts next week. The Bissell Pro Cycling Team has officially been invited to the Tour of California. So that will be our main focus for the next 3 weeks. ToC is a fun one. Ya got the stellar competition, the incredible venues, and all the media and fanfare hoopla. So I'm looking forward to that again. I went on a fairly long ride yesterday and averaged 16.5 mph so I'm obviously fit...16.5! I can't remember the last time that I averaged that low of a speed and wasn't soft pedaling. Keep in mind that I'm on a $9k piece of machinery that is made for speed. Oh well - hopefully it was just the coastal winds and steady downpour that slowed me down.
Right now, the team has rented a house for the month so we're staying in this decent place right out of town. People think we are spoiled pro athletes but sometimes we have to learn to adapt to any situation and still be expected to perform. I'm used to living in a boiler room w/ just enough room for me to sleep and now I'm expected to sleep in this giant master bedroom with a king size bed, fireplace, giant plasma t.v., huge bathroom with a bath tub and separate shower, and access to the back deck. How am I supposed to sleep restfully when the contrast is so great?? People just don't understand our plight. But I have to do this without complaint. It's rough.
On a different note, the new Pinarello Prince is incredible. You bike nerds need to see this bike (and ride it if possible). We have them equipped w/ easton, sram red, speedplay, and fizik saddles which all are awesome but the bike itself is stellar. And I'll go ahead and make the claim that SRAM Red is the best groupo out there. Okay, I've said enough about that. My point is two-fold: a) try the equipment we're on and see for yourself and b) I feel sorry for the other teams that we race against because they are clearly at a disadvantage. Which means more pressure on us to perform, right?
Okay, happy riding to those of you who do so. And for those who don' a bike or something. Just kidding, spare yourselves the discomfort of wearing spandex.
backyard view from team house in Santa Rosa, CA

roughing it at the team house.

aahhh brings a tear to my eye. I'm not sure I'm worthy.


Anonymous said...

TZ - Finally a post on the blog! I check at least 10 times every day you little teaser.

Thanks for the bike candy and I love seeing those rival cranks still in place. I am guessing that RED doesn't have 180s yet.

Good luck on the TOC buildup. I found your skid mark on Nelson the other day - beauty by the way!


logangarey said...

Ha ha ha, Someone else who knows about the skid mark. You really scared the shit out of me with that one Twinkles.
I can see why you aren't answering your phone, your big pimpin now! The views from the house are amazing and I am sure that the house is at least half as nice as your new Pinner.
Give a shout to Scotty when you see him and let him know that he is too cute to be getting those ugly stiches.
I MISS YOU ZIRB. Come home soon so we can get some cafe.
Oh, ya, kick some ass in the ToC!!!! Let them fools have it!

Ian Stanford said...

Hey, fight one of those Rock guys at the ToC. Let me tell you about "roughing it." 2 hours of intervals on the fluid trainer because there is a 40 degree windchill just 10 feet to my left outside. I know, I know. Minnesota. Looks like Cali is about 120 degrees warmer than here. Enjoy. THe bike? Ya, it looks o.k. Sweet ride man. Ciao

Anonymous said...

Go get Tom. We'll be watching. Kick ass in the TT


North Iowa SPIN said...

Have a great TOC and looking forward to following your team this year. Don't let that feed bag get in your way this year.

Anonymous said...

Kick some butt in the ToC

Michigan Mark said...

Dude! Just watched your beautiful ride in the last stage of ToC. That was incredible! Big cyclists everywhere were cheering you on!

Hope you make it over to Michigan this year!

In a Van Down By the St. Vrain River said...

Very inspiring ride today! This can only be the beginning - keep it up!

k2 said...

i wanted to say that i was yelling for you the entire time you were off having the ride of your life! we've only met once but i was pulling for you... you're the hero for that stage for sure! impressive...

AJ Samuelson said...

That was awesome. We turned on Versus last night and the first thing we saw was the name "Zirbel" plastered across the bottom of the screen and heard Phil Liggett say your name about 50 times in a minute. Inspiring ride.

Anonymous said...

You got some big cajones.
Awesome Job on Sunday, that's the most fun I've had watching a bike race in a long long long time.

Wishing I could ride.

Anonymous said...

That was a gutsy move out there, yesterday. More like that!
-Jim, your mechanic's brother

Anonymous said...

You made the stage Tom. I was yelling for you from wall on the first climb at the bowl. It was really inspiring to watch you suffering out front like that. A really balsy ride. Before Sunday I had no idea who you were, but now I know... You're the man!

Anonymous said...

You are my hero! That was one hell of a gutsy performance in stage 7. You give hope to guys like me. I'm 6'5" 200 lbs and have been riding for seriously for 2 years. Nice to see a "big" guy take it to the little guys! Awesome, just awsome. And I have to say- i do drool when I see the prince!

Jimmy Carrico and Logan Scott said...

Tom you are the man, I saw you pasadena in the pouring rain, watching you made it totally worth it.

Anonymous said...

Awesome race you gained alot of fans. That looked like it hurt. Its nice to see you in pain after all the pain you inflicted on us locals at Rockford, Mi crit. Atleast I was not in the group that got lapped twice. Great job