May 29, 2007

More carbon HPV's

So this post is about amateur composites, not amateur racing, but anywho.....

I was asked by JJ to help build a fairing. How fun! He's got a great shop, all the dirty work has been done, he's got the carbon laying around and he's even paying me(a little). Now I've just got to work out the details of the layup and fit it in with work and, oh yeah, racing. We're going to try to do a multiple stage wet layup, which should be easy, but messy. He's got enough carbon, but we're going easy and going with one layer of 10oz with lots of foam core ribs. I can't wait to get started. Pics to come...

I've been reading everybody's blog and I really regret not racing this weekend. Eppen had a blast in IA and Duluth looked like fun. My weekend was pretty relaxing, but it would have been awesome to get some real racing in. I should have planned things out better.

May 25, 2007

No racing

I'm not racing this weekend. I tried to talk myself into Duluth or even Iowa, but I couldn't afford either and it'd be a waste of a weekend off either way. It's too bad, because I'm feeling really good, outside of lingering things with my ankle and knee. I'll take the time to do some good intervals and go on a group ride or two. I'm gonna be ready for next Sunday at the Capitol.

In the meantime, we've been catching up at work. Phil came in and did tons of repairs today, Tboughts gave a long overdue organizing to the inventory area and I was able to sort out about 3 months worth of reciepts and repair tickets. I even got to see the new Pirates tonight. It was good an all, but does it seem like all new movies are louder than the used to be? I read that last sentance and feel about 50 years old, but I think its true, these new stadium theaters are noisier than the old kind.

May 22, 2007

Road racing is easy...

...But winning is hard.

Opus went well today. I think I'm in pretty good shape, which is good, but I definitly don't have this racing thing down. This was my second USCF race, though I've done some other road races out in the Black Hills. I was surprised by how slow it was, actually. I think we averaged under 20 mph, which seems rediculous. Brendon Moore averaged 19 at Erik's Cup on MTB's last weekend. The thing was, I was all over the place. I'd get frustrated with the slow pace and the skiddish riders and I'd ride off the front for a while. Then I'd hit the hill or a headwind and sit up and the group would catch me as we approached the finish. It requires a certain 'finesse' that I don't have yet. Mark and David were able to pull a nifty little move in the third sprint and David won it, so there were a few points for Flanders. Guess I'll spend the next couple days mentally training for Duluth (if Jebus ever picks up the phone!!!).

In not so good news, I was accelerating away from a stoplight on the way to the race and something caused a very sharp pain in my right knee. Its not swollen and I can walk and race (obviously) without any trouble, so I'm not too worried, but knee problems I do not need.

May 20, 2007

Gettin the legs back

Between packing, moving back to MN and starting work, I went about a week without any riding. On the one hand, it was a nice break, but on the other hand I'm supposed to be racing! I got some good riding in over the weekend and I think I'm ready for the first (er, second) race of the year on tuesday.

Work in the bike shop is hard. I'd like to go back to the easy life of being a student. At least Steven(aka Phil) comes back to work tommorrow and I'll have a couple of days off.

May 9, 2007

BHMBA M-Hill Hill Climb


Close, but no banana

May 8, 2007


Its my last week in the Black Hills. Since I've got nothing pressing to do and I love biking here so much, I've been out almost every day. Sunday I went solo out to Norris Peak highway and yesterday Lord Calvert and I went all the way out Nemo and back on 44.

Today Calvert and I rode the Centennial Trail. Its some of my favorite riding anywhere, and I'm really gonna miss having it in my back yard. It goes 111 miles from Bear Butte to Wind Cave, but we choes to do a 30 mile section from Nemo to Sheridan Lake. It may not sound like much, but 5 1/2 hours later, we were spent. Conditions were perfect: great weather and a nice tacky trail. It was great riding with Calvert; we've been mtb'ing together a while, so we ride together nicely. Tearing through the woods by Deer Creek, wheel to wheel without letting up was incredible, a nice way end my time at college here.

It was really a tale of two bikes. Chris has a Cannondale with a SID, rim brakes and really fast tires at 45psi, while I have a GF with bigger UST tires and disc brakes. Between the bike and my 5 inches, I'm giving up a good 35 pounds to him. He'd pull away on the climbs, but I'd gap him on the downhills. It just goes to show what a difference setup can make.

My only beef is with the trail markings. We must have spent close to half an hour figuring out where different turn offs were and where we were going. If this trail is really intended for mountain bikers and not just hikers, the forest service guys could work a little harder to mark it. Maybe they could have the loggers or BHMBA'ers put up signs. It would only take 15 minutes for someone to nail a sign to a tree, and it would really make riding the trails a heck up a lot easier.

In other news, I'm told I'll be graduating on Saturday. While I'll be done at Tech, I'm not out into the engineering world yet. Stony Brook University has unwittenly admitted me to grad school, so I'll be going there next fall.

May 2, 2007

*Cramp* "Ow" *Bonk* "oh..."

At least I'm getting stronger and at least I feel strong for the first hour of a ride. Best of all, my left (previously broken) leg cramped first, meaning I'm using it more and my pedaling stroke must be evening out a little!