Sunday, September 28, 2008


When I was 10, I thought people who were 20 were old. When I was 20, I thought people who were 40 were old. Now that I'm 40, I don't think anyone is old, I just think anyone under 25 is really young.

Thank you everyone! The celebration was epic.


Saturday, September 27, 2008

Must read

Pookie gave me a copy of Bob Roll's Bobke II for my 40th birthday. I don't think I've ever had this much fun reading a book in my life.

In the book's forward written by Dan Koeppel, he describes Bob Roll like this:

"It's like you've been given the keys to a bank vault full of a currency that you don't recognize, but you know it's priceless." I think Yenski should write a book. The stories would be just as interesting, funny, profound and absurd as what Roll has written. Whadda ya say, Ron?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

I'll try 'em

I loves me some Stan's No Tubes rims. They are extra-super light, and for someone who weighs in at 145 like me, they hold up to anything my puny little ass can dish out. My One9 currently feels like a Sherman tank with the REBA up front, but the diet is coming and she'll soon be back down around 20lbs when I switch back to the rigid fork.

So along comes this here new Stan's tire, The Raven. The name sounds cool. Say it with me one time..."The Raven." Now wasn't that nice?

I ran The Crow tires for about 15 minutes a couple years ago before tearing them to shreds on a rock and swearing I'd never use them again. They rolled off the rim because I was trying to run them tubeless on Bontrager Mustang rims. As the tire was coming off, I rolled through a rock garden at about 20mph which turned it into rubber salad. That worked about as well as trying to calculate the gravitational pull of a white dwarf star using a protractor.

So now I'm itching to try The Raven. The deal here is that they have taller side knobs than the Crow, so they are quite a bit more stable when tossed into turns. Initial reviews are positive and it would seem that the new tread pattern is quite the improvement over the Crow. Now that I'm rolling the Stan's 335 rims I won't have to worry about them burping off either.

And they is crazy light. I've been on a serious weight weenie kick lately. My goal is to get the Niner down to sub-18 pounds.

Let's say it again...."The Raven. The Raven. THE Raven."

Sunday, September 21, 2008

RACE REPORT - Assault on Liberty Mountain

911 operator, what's your emergency?

"I'd need to report an assault."

Where are you?

"I'm on Liberty Mountain in Lynchburg."

OK, tell me what's happening.

"I'm in a mountain bike race and it's beating the $h!t out of me."

Who's beating the $h!t out of you sir?

"No, IT's beating the $h!t out of me, not who."

I don't understand sir.

"The f*&$ing mountain is beating the $h!t out of me. Bad."

Sir, can you tell me a bit more about your situation so I can try and help you?

"Well, when we started I had to pick through a whole pack of Sport riders one-by-one, and that was sending my heart rate through the roof trying to..."

Do you think you are you having a heart attack?

"What? No, I'm trying to finish this stupid race but the mountain keeps beating the $h!t out of me, dammit! Will you just let me tell you my story?"

OK, sir. I'm sorry. Please continue.

"So anyway, I'm picking my way through all this damn traffic we got stuck behind and..."

What road are you on sir?

"I'm not on a damn road, I'm on a trail. I'm in a mountain bike race and I think this mountain is trying to kill me. I've been right on the heels of the 3rd and 4th place racers in the singlespeed class the entire time, despite having slow-poke Sport racers in front of me and crashing three times. Now I've lost sight of the guys I'm chasing and my front tire just started spewing Stan's all over the trail and I can't get it to seal up."

Who is Stan? Is he the one assaulting you?

"For Pete's sake! I have a flat that I can't seem to fix, I'm out of C02 and I've been walking for probably two miles trying to get to the finish, can I please just get some help?"

Sir, I can't help you until you can help me to understand what's really going on. Can you try explaining you situation one more time for me?

"OK, I am in a mountain bike race with about 130 other racers at Liberty Mountain in Lynchburg. The trails here are very difficult and many things have gone wrong to contribute to my situation. I've crashed three times and banged myself up, I think I may have gone off course, and my front tire went flat. I tried to fix it but could not. I have about four miles to go in an eighteen mile race, and I have to walk because I can't fix my tire. The mountain is beating the $h!t out of me!"


The Start
Three Amigos

After a bad day

Pookie and Michigan

Jeremiah and the Chickys

Overall winners
L to R
Robert Marion - 2nd
Jeremiah Bishop - 1st
Ron Glowczinski - 3rd
Nice job, Yenski!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Sunday, September 14, 2008


Not there just yet.

In Franklin County VA there are hills. Steep hills. They have hollers where they used to build moonshine stills so that the law couldn't find 'em. What they don't have are many volunteers. In past years this race had so many people marshalling, handing out water, and generally taking care of all the racers that you felt like you were in some major national big-sponsor event. Not this year. Where were the volunteers? Very disappointing. I have some friendly advise for the folks that run the MW Windows event - for what it's worth; Find a mountain bike racer to run your mountain bike race and listen to everything they tell you to do.

Too many people went the wrong direction on course for it to have been a "minor error". They were pointed that way by someone. This needs to be remedied publicly or the MW Windows MTB race may have a hard time attracting racers next year.

OK, I'm off the soapbox.

The race itself was a blur. The immediate climb from the start line pushed my heart rate into zone "ouch" in about 30 seconds. There it stayed for the whole race, which lucky for me was only 57 minutes long. This race is short like a crit, but with more nasty, steep grunts than any self-respecting road race would ever have. It hurts, but only for a little while.

I could tell my fitness is coming along. I still have a way to go, but I beat my personal-best time for this race by 3 minutes. There is one big difference between how I'm riding now and how I've ridden in the past - I welcome the pain. I look forward to it. The pain is my friend.

I rode myself into 2nd place behind G-Man in the singlespeed class. Ah, to be 20 again! I feel good that the only guy who beat me today is half my age. I even got a trophy!

As it is at most races, the reason you really go is for the fun of it. That's what it's all about...

...good, clean fun!

And, watching the dork parade.


Thursday, September 11, 2008

Kick it

Proof that American Idol isn't the worst show ever in the history of the Earth.

Oh by the way, Lance is coming back. Who's next? Ivan Basso? Floyd Landis?

Ha! Jan Ulrich!

Sunday, September 07, 2008

RACE REPORT - Carolina Cup

This was a day full of surprises. I am usually a morning person. Especially on race days, but I absolutely did not want to get up at 5:30am when the alarm went off. Yes, 5:30 in the $#$#@!! morning...on purpose. My race started at 9:45am.

I had a donut with breakfast. Surprise number 1 - donuts really upset my stomach if I eat them really early in the morning. Surprise #2 - The start of this race was easy. At one point I was within the top 5 going up a gradual climb when I looked over at the guy beside me, who was gasping for air and said "this is pretty slow." On the beginning of lap three, after what was shaping up to be a nice Sunday ride in the park, I heard over the loudspeaker that the first rider across the line on next lap would be awarded a "Prime". I felt good, so I buried it. I had a gap of a couple hundred yards by the 3/4 point of the prime lap, then I got gobbled up on the straight-away just about in site of the line. I guess my going off the front woke the group up. The pace increased from that point and once the lead group dropped me, they dropped the hammer. My average speed at race's end was 22.5 mph.

Surprise #3 - Burying yourself for a prime is stupid. I went way too early and way too hard. My race was essentially over. I started working with one other racer to try to pull back the main group (that was still in sight after my explosion). He would pull 30 seconds, then I would. I'd flick my arm for him to come through, but nothin'. I'd look back and he'd be 40 feet back trying to get back on my wheel. We did this dance two or three times and caught another racer. I tried again with this guy, but the same thing happened; when it was their turn to pull, they would just fall off. "Well, we ain't catchin' 'em." My day was really over.

I rode pretty hard for the remaining two laps, but didn't get close to bridging up to the pack. As you can see in the picture above, I was a little dejected. A stupid move cost me a good placing. Chock it up to inexperience.

I could see the group continue to pull away, but I could do nothing about it. I rode out my final laps in time-trial fashion, and ended up 22nd out of 32.

I wasn't exactly sure what to expect from myself since I haven't raced on the road for over two years. This little fitness test that was the Carolina Cup leads me to believe that I'm getting stronger, now I just need to get smarter.
Next week it's back into the woods at Wade Park in Franklin County for some (more familiar) mountain bike racing!

Friday, September 05, 2008

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Image is everything

I'm thinking about growing a stash. I was considering the Metallica handlebar stash, but that's too redneck for me. The slightly more refined stash plus soul patch is the way I'm gonna go.

Here are a few examples. Which one would look corniest?

Adam Craig sports the stars & stripes and some quality whiskers.

Brandon Flowers of The Killers. I have the same hairstyle and big geeky glasses, so this look would work for me!

David Zabriskie at the 2008 Tour of Georgia. He's pushing the Colonel Sanders look.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Seven years

I'm not hard on equipment. When it comes to cycling stuff, I keep things for longer than most folks. But, seven years is a long time for even me. My trusty Rudy Project glasses have been around almost as long as George W.

Purchased in Breckenridge, Colorado during the Red Zinger Classic expo, I wore them primarily as driving glasses for the first few weeks of proud ownership. But, I quickly moved them into my "favorite riding glasses" category after their very first mountain bike ride.

What I like most is the fact that they stay put. Even the gnarliest, rocky, bumpy singletrack can not dislodge them from their protective perch on my nose.

I see life through rose-colored glasses. Literally. The lenses pictured here are good for almost all light conditions except total darkness. Pop in the clear lenses after the sun is completely gone and you're treated to zero distortion - something none of my other riding glasses can boast.

I guess the moral of the story is: Rudy Project has gotten it right. You'll pay more than some other brands, but you'll get (seven years) your money's worth!

Monday, September 01, 2008