Voted # 1 source for Team Redlands information

Monday, December 17, 2012

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Reward for Information

I was at the Loma Linda Post office last Sunday, when I saw the above picture and the caption. Missing local cyclist. last seen on Barton road heading west.

Well, good news Abel has not been abducted, he has relocated to the Chinchilla area to join the family business and work on his golf game.

Abel was a regular on all the teams and team rides. He rolled raincross, Tuesday nights and crit. The triple crown to those of us in the know. Abel has since confided in me that he was never a cyclist but took up the sport to get in with the higher ups in the Allied Health department. I did the same thing to meet chicks.. It was just a fluke that he climbed the local cycling scene so quickly he said.

Abel said he had pretty much accomplished all he could here in the 909 and it was time to move on. His highlights here included having a baby, marrying one of the better looking cyclists wives, attending Camp Chopper, owning the bitches on the Haystack ride and of course being involved in Crit Riot. Yep Abel left a big mark here in the 909.

On behalf of the Team Redlands unofficial blog we all want to wish Abel and his family good luck on their new journey and his new hobby. We look forward to some pictures from the Golf Haystack foursome. Hit em straight !

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Monday, November 26, 2012

1st Warning Letter

Today I received a letter in the mail warning me that I am in violation of Article 2 section 3 of the Team Redlands cycling code and handbook. I was told that I had received this manual and read it a few years back.

Here is an excerpt of the letter:

Dear Chopper:

This last weekend was quite an embarrassment to all of us here at Team Redlands. Your lack of fitness and preparation on the Rain Cross ride was inexcusable. If you find yourself unfit to ride with the A group you might want to find a new team.

Team Redlands was founded on the tradition of great riders like Reid, Big E, JT and Freeman to name a few.  Just one bad outing from a TR rider stands to sully the fine tradition we have worked so hard to establish.

Consider this your first and last warning. We are glad to see you have bought a Gran Fondo kit because another day like Saturday and your gonna need two.

Sincerely,

Ride Secretary General

PS: We don't care how old you are , what medical problems you wine about or that the Red Sox lost 100 games last year.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Election Day

Its election day in Ohio and Florida. I love the electoral college. Where else can you find your fate decided by such a small group of people ?

Last week the delegates from two factions of Team Redlands decided the fate of the upcoming cycling kit. These two groups can aptly be put into two groups. The people I had never met and the people I have never ridden with.

Hopefully next year we can get more than 8 percent of the team out to vote. In the mean time you can always ask yourself what can you do for Team Redlands not what Team Redlands can do for you. Lets all get more active this year. Support the juniors, help out at the women's clinic, come out for the Wednesday night ride, sign up to help out at the classic, take a pull at the Rain Cross ride, don't be a dick at the bike shop, help Freeman at the Tuesday night worlds, fill in a pothole, bring a baked good to crit practice or some cut up oranges.

The opportunities are endless when you area part of a cycling team this big. Because at the end of the day I would like to think you didn't just join for a 20 percent discount did you ?

Monday, November 5, 2012

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Team Meeting follow up

Here is an e-mail the unofficial blog received today:

Dear unofficial blog

Instead of sleeping I am writing this e-mail. Earlier this evening I attended the Team Redlands meeting. I still can't believe I am a part of TR, It seems like just last year I was buying a bike and some Pearl Izumi shorts. Maybe because that was just last year.

I don't want to get into my beliefs or the upcoming election. Let's just say I am very conservative. I have never passed gas in front of my wife.

I really wanted to vote for the "fun" kit but I just couldn't do it. See I don't really want to stand out from all the other teams wearing red,white and black in the so cal cycling scene. The other kit just looked right , something about it just seemed familiar. It's like I have seen it before and I like that.

I went out to the car after the meeting and my current years kit was on the passenger seat. That's when it hit me. The kit I just voted for is exactly like last years except it is turned upside down. Crap.

Should I have voted for the Eddie Van Halen kit. What would it have felt like to roll up to the Ontario 30+ 4/5 with that kit. Would I have heard " riding with the devil" .Would my game have risen to match my kit. Would I finally be able to pass gas in front of my wife !

Anyhow I hope we get a chance to vote again I didn't see many of the players there who would have voted for the kit. I know Padgett, Abel, Welsh, Bryer, Lanza etc would all vote for the " fun" kit. Because I guess I just realized this is supposed to be fun even if I can't......

Thursday, October 18, 2012

LANCE ARMSTRONG


It’s been a few days since the Lance Armstrong debacle. I have sat back quietly. I have read the 202 page USADA report. Watched as Nike and Michelob have distanced themselves and then finally Lance himself step away from LiveStrong Foundation.

To the casual observer of the sport this is coming as a surprise. To anyone who knows the difference between a chain stay and a bottom bracket this is older news than the Hindenburg.

Sports are entertainment. That’s it. The game or event we watch is meant to entertain you. In America we have four major sports. Attempting to enhance those products through any means necessary has always been job #1.

The NFL sells a video called the greatest hits video. In the video you can watch bone shattering helmet to helmet hits. It cost 29.99. The NFL also fines its players for these same hits.

If you want your sports real you should be watching wrestling. In wrestling you could watch Hulk Hogan v Rowdy Roddy Piper. No chance Vince McMahon is going to suspend the title 3 years later because Super Fly Snooka was doping. See wrestling bills itself as entertainment and you are in fact entertained. They don’t dupe you into watching 162 baseball games. Only to find out that Brian Braun won the batting title then tested positive for a banned substance. 

So what’s it all mean for cycling and Lance? How far down the top 10 in the 2002 TDF do you have to go? Is there a rider who trained only on mountain spring water and quinoa? Pretty far and probably not.

For me Lance always got a pass. Why? Because he paid it forward. His creation of The LiveStrong foundation and the support of cancer patients worldwide.

You didn’t buy a yellow bracelet because Lance won a bike race did you? I thought you were supporting the fight against cancer?

You didn’t buy a “I ride for sticker “and put it on you bike because Lance won a bike race did you?

Okay I get it. Maybe it was never about Cancer for you guys for me that all it’s ever been about. Lance beat Cancer. I knew he didn’t beat a drug test.

If Lance’s efforts helped just one person in the fight and support of cancer. For that admire Lance. He may have failed those drug tests and for that he should be stripped of his titles. No questions asked.

As for Nike and Michelob. lets just hope they can get together and create a beer that a 12 year old 25 cent per hour factory worker in the Loon Kong Province can enjoy on there 10 minute lunch break one day.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Wednesday night ride


Its winter here in Redlands. The leaves are changing the temps are dipping into the low 90s and its time for the Wednesday night nighthawk ride.

The nighthawk ride is a big time evening training ride. All participants are required to have a front and rear light on thier trusty Trek. The ride leave from Stells in Redlands at 6:30 pm every Wednesday night all winter long.

The pace of the Nighthawk ride is an all out sausage fest of half wheeling, attacking in the parking lot. KOM surges for no reason what so ever and unexplained sprints every time someone sees a trash can or a fire hydrant.

That was a joke or was it ?

The ride has a climb up Wabash that allows for a faster skinnier rider to go up a hill easier. That rider will wait at the top for the rest of the regular sized riders. Then all the riders will contiune on to sunset for a couple laps. If you are mocked by the smaller rider let Scott Welsh know we dont want anyone to get fussy or have thier feelings hurt.

PS: Anyone who goes " FULL SAUSAGE " will get a nighthawk quad punch.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Hawaii 50


















Its been one month since my last post. That may be a record or a sign of things to come. On August 10th I turned 50. The party was limited to only 5 people who ride bikes and there Twinkies. The only instructions I gave were to have plenty of hookers and blow and under no circumstances did I want to look around the room and thank I was at a Bike classic meeting or a Team Redlands function.

If you ride a bike and didn't get one of the party lottery spots consider yourself lucky I vomited for 3 days and am now getting e-mails from a girl on meet an inmate.com

The big 50 party has come and gone. I am now really freaking old and if you think I was bad in my 40's you ain't seen nothing yet. With the early onset of Dementia I fear this Blog will go the path of a senior waiting outside AAA for a map.

Now that I am 50 you may want to get some ear plugs on the Saturday ride. Because if the 50 year old guy with bad knees, hip, skin cancer and a failing liver chase after the up the hill option and you don't......

Thanks for all the well wishes now turn down that rock n roll and will somebody answer that damn phone for the love of god.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Tube Tuesday


As many of you know the local bike shop Cyclery USA offers a special on Tuesdays. Buy 2 tubes get one free, it's called tube Tuesdays. I always take advantage of Tube Tuesdays.

Last week I rode on Thorn Thursday. I picked up no less than 3 thorns on my ride and discovered many other riders had experienced the same peril. Coincidence maybe or is their a connection between Thorn Thursday and Tube Tuesday ?

Please keep all thorns you have picked up in the last 10 days. I will be collecting samples and forwarding them to the USDA and BLM for review.

If their is a connection between Tube Tuesdays and Thorn Thursdays The unofficial Blog will find out. Until then keep your eyes peeled for rogue thorns.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Hoosier Summer

The Summer of Chopper continued in July with the annual trip to Indiana. Nothing says the 4th of July like the mid-west. This summer has seen the worst draught since the 50's. The corn was only 2 feet tall and the lake was so low you couldn't put the boat in.

In Indiana they play baseball, football and basketball and they ride bikes. The thing I love about Hoosiers is they just do it. They play sports. No douche bags or hey look at me people.

Ever wonder why the greatest sports movies were staged in the state of Indiana. Here are arguably the best sports movies ever produced.

Hoosiers starring Gene Hackman and Jimmy Chitwood. " Don't get caught watching the paint dry". Rudy starring the Golden Dome and Notre Dame. "This is the greatest sight these eyes have seen" and of course Breaking Away a true story about the little 500 held annually at IU and the " Cutters " beating the rich IU frat boys at cycling.

Do yourself a favor this summer and watch a Hoosier movie based somewhat upon a real story with a happy ending. Because God knows we all love a Happy ending.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Attention Defecit ...............

It's not that I'm lazy its that I just don't care. Truer words have never been spoken. Thanks Paul Rudd. I have to say getting up the strength to fire off a blog post on the old commodore 64 has reached a level of historic boredom.

I think its still because at the root of it all I am writing about exercises. Can you really make exercises sound exciting. I guess thats why  its not just enough to join a exercise cult but do you have to put a sticker on your car and buy a t-shirt and wear some hey look at me socks. Yes, we are all looking at you.

If you do 50 push up and you don't tell anyone do you still get the benefits. I don't know maybe.

The TDF did not hold my interest either. I was bored at watching the 2nd tier rider on each team show up the main GC contender. The continual looking back to make sure the pace was just right for Wiggo was the final straw. I turned the channel to the British Open and cheered for Tiger because of his family values.

Fore !

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Block Party ?






















Did you know that some Team Redlands riders have streets named after them. On a recent ride I came across this gem. Now I know that El Jeffe is kinda a big deal in the Yuciapa area but I had no idea he had this kind of clout.

This got me thinking who else on the team has a street named after them. Here are the results of my search. In Highland they have a Manning Court. Lots of barking dogs. In Redlands they have JT circle and in Mentone they don't have a street named after him but here is a Tickmeyer brewing center.

Team Redlands always ahead of the curve.

Friday, June 29, 2012

TDF Predictions

You can wake up at 4:30 am every morning for the next three weeks, or we can save your marriage right now and tell you who is going to win the Tour de France.

This will be the easiest repeat in TDF history since Lucien Petit-Breton 1908 and 1909 victories. Cadel's BMC squad is built around Cadel and he's Australian mate.

Cadel Evans winner of your 2012 TDF you heard it here first.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Giada Borgato Hello

Before the blog heads to France for the upcoming TDF lets make a quick stop in Italy. Giada missed Wicam. She is the current Italian Road race champion. her favorite foods are Sushi, she enjoys taking long walks on the beach and reading my blog.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

You're Not God !

Since this blog is aptly named the Team Redlands unofficial blog I guess its time to write about something cycling related and maybe even a little topical. So here goes.

When the fuck did all you people who ride a bike and wear a kit from any organization, fictitious, make believe or an actual team. think that made you god in all things cycling ? I know who the god of local cycling is and trust me it ain't you !

In the good old days a few senior dudes would lay down the law give you an earful because they knew the actions they were watching could lead to the death of themselves and the other cyclists. Now every Fred that has spent 12 months in a saddle and wearing a kit from a Michael Ball garage sale is barking from the peloton.

The ride that has gotten way out of control is Crit Riot. Now I know the first rule of Crit Riot is not to talk about Crit Riot or hell even Blog about Crit Riot but what the hell. I would donate $25 to the RICO kids if we could make it through one Thursday night without the post game " Bark A Thon".

The problem is now I am seeing a spillover into Joe Public cyclist. I came across some chick laying down some rules on FB the other day. Your not God, none of you are.You don't represent the cycling community none of you do. We can all only represent ourselves. Police up your own dicks and stop worrying about ever other person on a bike. If we do that then all should take care of itself. According to the people at National Geographic it's called the selection process.

I miss the skills clinics when do Joy and Brian get back ?

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Social Media


Everyday it seems the social media space adds a new player and more ways you can share with the rest of the planet what you are doing. The space will hopefully shrink soon. But until then I hope this chart helps us all understand when the appropriate media tool should be utilized.

Above is an easy guide that shows the relationship between a Police officer and a donut. Please take a few moments to study the above chart and use the approprite channel. I hope you " Liked " this example as much as you " liked" that your ex-girlfriend from high school is having a birthday.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Summer of Chopper


















Memorial day weekend can only mean one thing, the beginning of another rite of Summer. The Summer of Chopper. Each summer I attempt to pack in as many things as possible that have nothing to do with cycling, diet, stretching or sits up. Because lets face it nobody ever wanted to hear how many sit ups you can do !

This weekend I was lucky enough to spend time with family in Boston. We had a few get togethers on Yawkey Way. We were treated to a walk off home run in the bottom of 9th on Saturday. Go Sox !

This year Fenway Park turned 100 years old. Thankfully it missed the wrecking ball or the 1980s remodel that so many stadiums went through. I have not been as lucky.

Since it was Wicam I decided to take a trip to the Cape on Sunday. Provincetown or P Town as its better known was hosting Women's Weekend. The ratio was 40 women to every man on the cape. The problem is these women have no use for a stud like JT. It was nice to share the appreciation of women in cycling across the country.

Monday, May 21, 2012

No more Mommy Jeans !















This last weekend we saw the Amgen Tour of California roll through the local area. Always exciting when I get a chance to see my fellow cyclist in their civilian outfits. A high end road cyclist always maintains that level of fashion that the most recent team kit provides but once off the bike. Hello Mommy jeans and Mid thigh length shorts and the requisite Tour of Palm springs pit stained 2007 finisher shirt.

The real fashion horror of the high end world of club cyclist are the choices some of the women are still apparently forced to make. Gentleman its not 1978 and title IV has long been passed. Nobodies wife, Twinkies or girlfriend should be wearing their old kits, jerseys or god forbid shorts. In honor of WICAM lets all loose the Mommy Jeans and the hand me downs. I am pretty sure Vanderkitten makes a club jersey. Meow !

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Look Ma No Hands


The Wicam rider of the year competition continues to heat up faster than the weather. This last weekend at Raincross found two of the more popular WICAM riders battling up the dreaded 4 % climb that lasts 3/4 of a mile.

After the split just for good measure the two girls threw themselves onto the ground during a touch up with some wheels to show how truly tuff they really are. Wicam a tradition unlike any other.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mothers Day

















This year Mother's day fell appropriately in the same month that we enjoy and celebrate Wicam. Here at the Team Redlands unofficial blog we want to thank all the Mom's that raised you and the Mom's who are now raising your kids. A mothers work is never done especially when she raises a cyclist.

Happy Mothers Day.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Tacos or Dana Point ?






















This weekend offers some close to home big time racing at the Dana Point Grand Prix. This weekend also features a invitation to Laguna Beach and a party that features a Taco Bar. That took me about 3 seconds to make up my mind as to which event I was going to participate.

Hopefully I will wake up from my Taco Bar induced coma in time to watch some of our locals race the street of Dana Point. Good luck and light your Taco's !

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Pull thru or Pull out !












The summer training rides are in full swing here in Redlands. The Tuesday night world championships, Criterium practice on Thursdays and the always entertaining Raincross ride.

With the return of these rides we see a renewed sense of faith, camaraderie, fellowship and friendship. New beginnings and hope. As sense that all mankind's troubles are just going away. We see the latest mentor relationships blossom between master and student. Some fresh faces on new carbon. I can only call myself proud to be associated with this renewal each year.

Here are just a few examples of the wonderment I have seen from my unbearable Fizik saddle so far this summer.

Crit practice has been going on for 3 weeks. We have had 3 language violations, a guy not pull thru. a water bottle thrown at a 3.95 per hour factory worker trying to get home to his kids and a possible attempted murder.

Tuesday nights have seen a guy not pull thru, a unauthorized film crew taking pictures without a signed release a junior pass on the right hand side and a illegal bike change for the 3rd lap.

On the Raincross ride a rider did not pull thru. A guy threw a deuce at the meet up spot and someones mom picked them up at the coffee shop and did not give anyone else a ride home when I know for a fact their was room and juice boxes.

We can't all change our name to Metta World Peace and we cant force a guy to pull thru but for the love of god cant we all just get along its just a bike.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Fenway 100 years




















Happy Birthday Fenway Park. On April 20, 1912 you played your first game. 100 years later you look to spank the Yankees just like you did 100 years ago. Happy Birthday.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Save Rain Cross

I keep looking for the Rain Cross ride in the obituary section of the paper. The once feared and often controversial ride seems to be dying a slow death.

The once proud ride was a measuring stick against the other local talent. A venture out Saturday morning would tell you where your fitness was. The top of Filmore street always a good time on the quads even if your were just sucking wheel the entire ride.

Today the ride is on Chemo, radiation and some homeopathic drugs. The ride appears to be on its last legs. The head dog at Monster is to be thanked for trying to reinvent the course. The course now features a few climbs that seem to remove the chafe form the ride and make sitting in not an option. Thank you Jesus!

Are the changes enough. Has the local Police force decided to fight crime instead of cyclists. Only time will tell. Last time I checked the Rain Cross ride was not on Wiki but Como Street was. This Summer may be the last. Save Rain Cross T-shirts may be on the horizon. Its an election year so maybe its time for a change.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Not from Tennessee
















Another Redlands Bicycle Classic is in the books. I continue to get a little more involved in the Classic part of the weekend. I still have 500 hours of community service to complete so why not help out at the classsic. Working the social media stuff and trying to report what is going on is a fun challenge.

The one thing about this weekend that continues to impress me is this volunteer stuff. The whole weekend is nothing but a volunteer stew. from the race director to the old lady that sits on Olive and Cajon in the rain. The guy who picks the course and the guy who picks up the crap on the course. Everyone is a volunteer.

The peolpe who work the classic spend a lot of thier own time to put on a good show every year. Lyndsay Lohan and myself are the only ones required to volunteer so to everyone else good job on putting on a good show.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Fargo 500 ?

Wow I guess I do have time to make another post. The reason spite. I always have time when spite is involved.

The local Fish Wrap posted an article today regarding the Redlands Bicycle Classic. its negative effects upon local business, road closures and the hassle the citizens are put through because of this traditional event.

So the basic question is this. Does a city benefit from a special event or do the hassles outweigh any benefit economically. Well, I guess that's why cities line up and bid for the Olympics to be held in their town.

Why have events like the Indianapolis 500, Kentucky derby, Superbowl in your town?. Why do all major cities shut down entirely to run a Marathon. What is the first thing that comes to mind when I say Boston. The Boston Marathon right. The Master's is played every year in Augusta. What is the point of this exercise. These events bring people to your town, these events brand your city and associate positive events with them.

If the city of Indianapolis didn't have the Indy 500 what would you know Indiana for? Exactly.

So yes, I agree lets shut down the Redlands Bowl, get rid of Market night, cancel the Run through Redlands and the Redlands Christmas parade. I want our town to be associated with ample parking and strip malls and the town folk are never bothered by traffic trying to get to either.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Bike Classic week is here !!!


This week begins the Redlands Bike Classic here in town. To my blog that can only mean one thing. not much activity, that is unless I can get an exclusive behind the scenes look into the Bmc and Joy back story.

Last year I got duped into helping out with the Social Media stuff for the Classic. I told them I would help out under a few rules. The main one being I thrive under a lack of supervision or accountability. Oh and the biggest rule was that I would not wear a blousy classic volunteer button up red shirt that makes even a Kenyan marathoner look over weight.

Again to keep up to date of a watered down version for the masses Chopper go to @redlandsclassic on twitter or Redlands Classic on Facebook. Good luck to all the racers and enjoy the weather. That last statement was an example of PC Chopper.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Tuesday nights just got fun again !



That's right change your clocks and change your shorts. Because it's here again a looser leave town winner take all Daylight savings Tuesday night world championship Smack down.

See The flying Lanza brothers attempt to control the front, JT Superfly Snooka take on the field. Captain Lou Miller. Craig the Body Turner. The bushwhacker's. Abel the Snake Rendon, Scott the Giant, Matt the undertaker, Zack attack, Rowdy Roddy Lohman and new guy Chris Crash Cross say jump!

The Lady's card will feature such Riders as Joy Dirka Dirka Duerksen, Trish the Dish, Little Fuji, Hilly Hillary and the battling red heads.

Note the event coordinator is free to substitute other riders , so bring a coke can bring a seven up can. we will sell you the whole seat but remember you will only use the front half for this Tuesday night smack down.

If you are unable to attend this event just remember this bloody thing happens every Tuesday night for the next 7 months.

Monday, March 12, 2012

The Weekends Tilt



It's bike racing season here in So Cal and for me that can only mean one thing race my bike ?

I used to coach runners back in the day. I often found myself on Monday morning reviewing the weekend results. Yesterday was the final day of the Tour De Murrieta. Time to reflect on the weekend of bike racing here in So Cal and some timely observations about racing.

The 45+ masters in So Cal is now fast and scary. The level of competition , fitness and 100 people trying to all ride in the top 25 can make you age real fast.

People don't have a clue how to warm up for a race. Don't have a clue.

Race fitness is not the same as Cycling fitness.

Taking nutrition during a road race is essential. Finding a moment to eat a Gel during a road race is tricky.

Being nice at a race is taken as a sign of weakness.

There are teams at bike races. There are people who ride for a team.

I wonder if Thurlow Rogers ever gets bored of beating everyone.

I don't know why I race my bike. I have started this season just where I left of last year. I find myself fit enough to stay in but not aggressive enough to warrant racing. I am crit filler at best and if that's the case then maybe I should go golfing instead.

The Tilted kilt can make you forget about all of the above the second you walk in the door.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Chopper and Abel

Its March here in Redlands and that can only mean one thing. College Basketball. Nope that's not right. Oh, yes its time for the Redlands bike Classic.

The Classic started back in 1985 and has been a staple on the bike racing scene ever since then. For me its the reason I moved my family here years ago. Nope, that was becuase my father got transferred to Norton Air Force Base.

As some of you may know the classic has fallen on tough times in the volunteer category so they asked me to help out with the social marketing. Apparently they have read my blog and felt the classic could use a more edgy approach. So if you want to stay abreast of all things related to the classic I encourage all of you to follow us/me @redlandsclassic on twitter.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Are you a crime fighter ?

I know its an Olympic year but am I missing something. This last Saturday I was taking inventory of the Team Redlands rank and file. To my surprise most everyone was sporting the new 4 way Lycra wind cutting ab hugging top.

As a man approaching middle age but still sexually active without the assistance of Merck I have chosen another path for my training needs. The club fit. The club fit allows the rider the comfort and breathable of the team jersey without the crime fighting aerodynamic properties only required for batman or superman.

Don't get me wrong I have a 4 way stretch top hanging under glass in my hall way just in case i decided to drive 4 hours in a car to ride in a circle in a industrial park with 100 guys who want to kill me. until then I am the guy with the club fit top and maybe a pair of cut offs.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Monday, February 6, 2012

Damn Redlands cyclists !

As an act of goodwill Team Redlands riders were asked to pitch in and help offset the fines levied during operation “spandex ".

Over the last few months an increase in complaints regarding the rich folk from Redlands riding their $5,000 bikes up and down the streets of Riverside had reached epidemic proportions.

One woman living on Fillmore street had commented that her never ending garage sale had seen a decrease in sales because passer by motorists were forced to slow down and wait 8 seconds for a group of riders to pass.

Another motorist noted. What the hell is this county coming to? Bands of people getting together to exercise and cause my family to sit at a four way intersection and be delayed for our Saturday morning all you can eat IHOP feast. This is ridiculous !

The complaints were endless so something had to be done to return Riverside to the mecca of safety and family one thinks of when they hear the name Riverside. If I lived in Riverside I would sleep better knowing the renegade cyclists from Redlands are back in orange.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Kit review

I was waiting to write my kit review until summer. the reason was simple I really wanted to put the new kits through the 4 seasons of So Cal and give an honest assessment of how she handles all situations.

No need to wait any longer as of Sunday the kit has seen 28 degree mornings, a rainy ocean spray, a trip to Oak Glenn and unexpectedly a boat ride on greenspot road.

I will limit my review to one area of the kit and let you draw your conclusions from that one key component. No not shammy size, not UV protection on the quads, not the 4way stretch fabric and not the misspelling of Redlands. Ha made you look.

The Sock. Yes the sock. For the first time in what has to be over 5 years the Team Redlands kit has a sock. But not just any sock. A sock that is not an anklet and for the love of God not a freaking BRO sock. It is a classic white sock with a simple red band that says Redlands. The sock lands on that perfect part on the leg. Mid calf. That is wear God intended your sock to land.

Thank you JL Velo for my socks. hopefully now I will not have to look at a BRO sock anywhere but LA fitness when the Yuciapa wannabe Villopto BRO take over the free weight room.

New Kits score a solid B.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Camp Chopper in the books


Last year I got the idea of putting on a winter cycling camp. The idea was to create a destination camp similar to the ones the pros ride each winter in preparation for race season.

This last weekend Camp Chopper went off without a hitch. The roads around the Paso Robles area delivered killer rides as promised. The group of 25 got in 235 miles over the 4 days.

The first ride was an acclimation to Paso 35 miler. The ride took in the hills of Peachy Canyon, Vineyard and Lake Nacimento Road. That ride was followed by a private tasting at Mitchella and a welcome dinner at Berry Hill Bistro for 30.

On Friday we headed out towards the coast. A 75 mile loop that featured the climb up Old River road from Cayucos. This was the only day we saw rain. The ride was fully supported by Honey Stinger and Victoria. Team masseuse was available upon our return and one more private tasting for the campers at Adelaida.

Saturday morning started like the others with the wicked good free breakfast at LaQuinta. Fuel was on everyone mind as the Grand Chopper loomed. A 90 mile ride that included the climb up Santa Rosa Creek Road. Amgen tour of Cal had to remove this climb from last years race. We made the climb our bitch. Back at the hotel we were hooked up with Domino's from Vic and Free beer from Trek.

On Sunday we concluded with a recovery 35 miler featuring the east side rollers of Paso. The rest of the Camp Chopper family members joined us for the ride. The crew rolled back in and the first inaugural Camp Chopper was in the books.

Paso delivered on all fronts. The routes, miles, climbs, support, weather, hotel, meals, wine, scenery and killer swag. Thanks to all sponsors, wineries and riders who contributed to Camp Chopper.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Lost art of the group ride

Written by Peter Wilborn on September 1, 2011

Every so often, I’ll ride a recreational group ride. I love the comraderie of cyclists, the talk, the last minute pumps of air, the clicking in, and the easy drifting out as a peloton. “I miss riding in a group,” I’ll think to myself.

The magic ends by mile 10. The group will surge, gap, and separate, only to regroup at every stop sign. I’ll hear fifteen repeated screams of “HOLE!” for every minor road imperfection. And then no mention of the actual hole. Some guy in front will set a PR for his 30 second pull. Wheels overlap, brakes are tapped, and some guy in the back will go across the yellow line and speed past the peloton for no apparent reason. A breakaway?!

I curse under my breath, remembering why I always ride with only a few friends. Doesn’t anyone else realize how dangerous this ride is? How bad it is for our reputation on the road? There are clear rules of ride etiquette, safety, and common sense. Does anyone here know the rules? Who is in charge?

But no one is in charge, and the chaotic group has no idea of how to ride together. As a bike lawyer, I get the complaints from irritated drivers, concerned police, controversy-seeking journalists, and injured cyclists. It needs to get better, but the obstacles are real:

First, everyone is an expert these days. The internet and a power meter do not replace 50,000 miles of experience, but try telling that to a fit forty year-old, new to cycling, on a $5000 bike. Or, god forbid, a triathlete. No one wants to be told what to do.

Second, the more experienced riders just want to drop the others and not be bothered. It is all about the workout, the ego boost, or riding with a subset of friends. But a group ride is neither a race nor cycling Darwinism. As riders get better, they seek to distinguish themselves by riding faster on more trendy bikes; but as riders get better they need to realize two things: 1) there is always someone faster, and 2) they have obligations as leaders. Cycling is not a never ending ladder, each step aspiring upwards, casting aspersions down. It is a club, and we should want to expand and improve our membership.

Third, different rides are advertised by average speed, but speed is only one part of the equation. This approach makes speed the sole metric for judging a cyclist, and creates the false impression that a fit rider is a good one. Almost anyone can be somewhat fast on a bike, but few learn to be elegant, graceful cyclists.

Fourth, riding a bike well requires technique training. Good swimmers, for example, constantly work on form and drills; so should cyclists. Anyone remember the C.O.N.I. Manual or Eddie Borysewich’s book? They are out-of-print, but their traditional approach to bike technique should not be lost. More emphasis was given on fluid pedaling and bike handling.

Before the internet, before custom bikes, and before Lance, it was done better. Learning to ride was an apprenticeship. The goal was to become a member of the peloton, not merely a guy who is sort of fast on a bike. Membership was the point, not to be the local Cat. 5 champ. You were invited to go on group ride if you showed a interest and a willingness to learn. You were uninvited if you did not. You learned the skills from directly from the leader, who took an interest in riding next to you on your first rides (and not next to his friends, like better riders do today). Here is some of what you learned:

To ride for months each year in the small ring.
To take your cycling shorts off immediately after a ride.
To start with a humble bike, probably used.
To pull without surging.
To run rotating pace line drills and flick others through.
To form an echelon.
To ride through the top of a climb.
To hold your line in a corner.
To stand up smoothly and not throw your bike back.
To give the person ahead of you on a climb a little more room to stand up.
To respect the yellow line rule.
To point out significant road problems.
To brake less, especially in a pace line.
To follow the wheel in front and not overlap.

The ride leader and his lieutentants were serious about their roles, because the safety of the group depended on you, the weakest link. If you did not follow the rules, you were chastised. Harshly. If you did, you became a member of something spectacular. The Peloton.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

New Kits are done !


The New Team Redlands kits are finished and going to be distributed this Saturday at Cyclery USA in Redlands. I know there must be a VIP room or a special preview way of getting my kit ahead of the rank and file members but as of tonight I have not received that e-mail.

In anticipation of the New Kits I have purchased the rights to a few slogans and web site domains. We all remember to well that first ride in last seasons kit. Light the Taco can still be heard at my house on trainer day.

I ate it on the light the Taco hats, t-shirts and beer steins when Castelli gave us all free replacement bibs. Damn excellent customer service. I cant get Sears to replace a defective lint screen but chamois have a lifetime warranty ?

Anyhow good luck to the new company. I call em as I see um or as they feel. Lets hope we don't hear any new rally cries this year. Flame the Chili, Wheres the Beef or Who's your daddy sites were all taken.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year

Last night was New Years Eve. The choices of parties were endless. Anyone who really knows me knows that New Years is the one day I abstain from drinking.

I don't go to the River for Memorial day I don't shop on black Friday and I don't drink with weekend warriors. I love being around drunks they are either telling you how much they love you or hate you , either proposition a very scary one.

This year I turn Hawaii 50. So lets get that out their right now this year is a tribute to my 50 years on Planet earth. If you are lucky enough to receive a invitation to the 50Th year festivities your not going to want to dodge this one like you did the Camp Chopper invite.

I neglected to do a year in review because nobody needs a recap of the Red Sox September. I don't have a dog , I don't have a kid, I have the Red Sox. Enough said.

The blog will continue for one more year thanks to a last minute sponsorship and the First Amendment to the Constitution. Happy New Year now stop reading and loose some weight you fat asses.