Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Long overdue. Still turning left. Sometimes right.

I am not very good at the internet. I dont own a computer save for my iphone and that is a drag to type on for more than telling my roommates were out of TP.

What has happen since I made my last attempt at entertaining you? Well, we found a house. Brent, Amy, Al and I live in a sweet mostly vegan bike racer house in NE Portland. Its pretty far north but central so it doesn't seem to out of the way. It has a huge basement that doesn't flood too bad or often.

I managed to screw up my back pretty bad in January. On a group ride i was following my teammate Daryl down a hill when he took off for a sign sprint of something. I slammed it in the biggest gear, only a 12 on the rain bike, and jumped hard to stick his wheel. Unfortunately the drive train on that bike was a little worn and in need of love and as soon as i got all force into my pedals the chain skipped, or jumped off. At well over 40mph I nearly catapulted over the bars, rubbed my nose on the front wheel, SLAMMED my knee in the bars, swerved 10 feet in both directions in a matter of .2 seconds, but managed to keep it upright. ! I DID however manage to not break, but unseat a non drive side spoke on my rear Ksyrium.

I limped home after the charlie horse in my knee subsided. Over the proceeding days my back decided it was done playing along. I could barely move. I went to see my massage therapist Laura Green and she realized something was seriously wrong and and sent me to Dr. Noel Snograss at Portland Chiropratic. Over the course of the next few months Dr. Noel figured out that my entire lower back gave up all at once. Torn between L4 and L5 and both SI's twisted, or something like that. He talked me out of quitting bike racing and gave me the confidence and therapy i needed to try to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Miss all over the early season road racing and valuable gym time i once again had to scramble to find track fitness.

Into May my back was still giving me grief but Dr. Noel assured me that i was time to start ramping it up. Did most of my racing in small gear and avoided jumping too hard, which made Fast Twitch Friday sprint nights interesting. I also made a fun trip up to the indoor Burnaby velodrome, which i love. Slowly (ha) but surely i started to feel better as I worked thru the scar tissue.

By the time summer camp (San Jose, Portland and Seattle AVC track races) was approaching i was feeling quite a bit better, but concerned about my fitness. Afew weeks before all that tho, Brent, Al and I drove all the way to Minneapolis for the Fixed Gear Classic. I was very excited to catch up and race with one of my favorite bike racers, Franco Marvulli. I had pretty mixed rasults. I felt pretty fast but my head wasn't always there. My better results over the two day event were 2nd in the miss & out, 2nd in the scratch race and Dan Harm and I teamed up to win the madison. Unfortunately messing upa few other events pretty bad meant that i was just off the podium for the over all omnium, but Dan got 2nd. The two day drive on both ends of the racing was pretty brutal, aided slightly by the elecro-stim kit i borrowed and also helped keep me awake as i served as the world's best passenger. After racing, Al's dad treated us to amazing vegan pizza and we each ate well over a pizza each. It ruled.

Oh, and I won the trackstand competition on BOTH days.

Next up was the Testarossa Velodrome Challenge. Dan and i were pretty bummed that they decided to not have a madison at this event this year. It was replaced instead by a weird 25+ lap win and out. I continued to have decent form and results. 4th in the miss n out, 3rd in the scratch, and 2nd in the points. Totally got 3rd in the win n out as well but was relegated for drifting a few inches out of the lane after leading this one out for more than a lap.

The following weekend was the much anticipated Portland AVC. I really wanted a good result at my home race. i only managed 4th in the miss n out, again so i set my sights on the points race. I rode a little conservative at the beginning but then decided to take control and make shit happen. Jame also waited to start digging his heels in and coming into the last two sprints he was gaining on me. Four point spread going into the final sprint and I manged to keep close enough to hold on for the win two points ahead. Jake Hanson was only 1 point behind Jame. It was an exciting race and unfortunately the final race of the weekend as we got rained out the 2nd day, so Dan and I didn't have a chance to destroy the madison.

Around the week of the Alpenrose AVC i felt like the world was out to crush my soul. A lot of this were going on that were amazing unwarranted, ridiculous and frustrating. I decided to keep my head up and stay positive and i did for the most part but the stress must have started to take its toll by the time of the Marymoor Grand Prix. That's the only way i can explain the way i raced that weekend. Much like some of the races in MN, i felt strong but slightly disconnected. The last race of the weekend was the madison that i did with Jame Carney. I got my head on a little straighter for that one, but Karzen and Hollowway rode a gutsy race and just edged us out of the win. It was fun to finally hold hands with Jame in a race.

After summer camp trackstravaganza 2011, I took a good weeks rest and started planning my attack on the world for the foreseeable future. Did some racing on the road (read: circuit races and crits) on my SWEEET new TiCycles road bike. Designed by Dean Reed at Bike Central and built with the same tubing as my track bike, this thing flys! Managed a 2nd place at the Boston Harbor Circuit Race in Olympia, WA and top tens at the Portland Twilight and Vancouver crits.

I have also started working at a sweet local business called BicyclingHub.com with rad people and a very wonderful atmosphere. It is wonderfully conducive to my self centered bike racer lifestyle and i can't thank the owner, Doug, enough for his support.

Next week Dan and i are off to Pennsylvania to race the Madison Cup at The Valley Preferred Cycling Center (T-town.) Then I may head to the PA state crit in Wilkes Barre, PA before I head to Pittsburgh to see friends and family for the first time in over 2 years. Still short on money for this trip, so if you want to buy some records to help fund it, please refer to the records for sale post on this blog. Thankx