Friday, April 28, 2006

School's Out For The Summer.

I'm done with school for another year. I think my grades should be good, and now I can focus 100% on riding with some work on the side. I've got piles of laundry to do tonight, and a ton of stuff to pack so I'm ready to leave for the Gila. I'm still kicking around the idea of racing tomorrow, but it's looking pretty slim right now. I've got the problem of teamates that don't return phone calls, so it makes things difficult. Oh well. We'll figure it all out in the end I suppose. I'm gonna get started on the laundry and see if I can figure racing stuff out. I should be able to update from the road, but no guarantees. Wish me luck, and thanks to everyone whose made these last two weeks of school a couple of the funnest I've been through.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Brian Amstutz Rules.

He writes papers all night long. Good work Brian.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006


School is getting old. I'm really glad I only have this week left. I don't know that I could do more. It's a simple problem of motivation, but I think I'll be able to finish it off nicely. I have a final tonight at 5:30, then a presentation tomorrow afternoon. I'm also working tomorrow morning, so I need to nail that project tonight.

It's hard to believe the semester is almost over. I just stumbled across a picture of my first bike ride of the new year, and I was surprised by how recently it seems like it was. The semester has flown by, but that's a good thing. I dreaded coming back to school after Christmas Break more this year than ever, but it's actually turned out to be one of the better semesters I've spent here at UNC. Looking back a lot has happened since January, some good, some bad, but I've come a long ways, and hopefully things continue on this track.

I never expected myself to be in the place I'm in right now, but it's strange how things tend to work out. It'll be exciting (or depressing) to see where I am a year from now. I know where I want to be, but a year ago, I was planning on changing majors and opening a bike shop. It sure seems like a while ago, and I'm glad I grew out of that idea, but I guess it's helped me figure out just what I want to do. Anyway, I need to do some serious work this summer if I plan on continuing towards my ultimate goals, but at least I'll have something to keep me busy?

Right now I need to shower and get ready for my final tonight. Here is a parting shot for you all. It's the picture from that first ride of the year. As Scott or Sheryl or someone says, "Everyday is a winding road."

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Mad Cow Classic

I just got home from another weekend of collegiate racing Grand Junction. It's actually my last weekend of collegiates for the year as I will be leaving next weekend for the Gila. I normally ride like crap in Grand Junction for some reason, and Saturday was no exception. I felt as flat as I have all year, and was feeling pretty down after the road race, but today's crit made up for it and then some.

The road race was a 3 hour and 20 minute suffer-fest around and over the top of some of the mesa's that surround Grand Junction. I stuck with the main group the whole time, but felt like I just couldn't push the pedals. I'm usually pretty motivated to suffer, but when you're suffering just to stay with a group that are riding slow, it's a whole different world. I ended up finishing 14th, which is the best Collegiate Road Race finish I've had, but I feel like I could have been in the mix had I felt like I have in the last few races I've done. I think I felt so blocked, because of my riding or lack-thereof last week, but live and learn I guess. Hopefully the rest will do me some good in the long run and I'll be flying next week.

The crit today was on an awesome course. A true criterium course that is pancake flat with a couple of fast straight's, 4 90 degree corners, and one 360 degree traffic circle. It was a short course and I was hoping everyone would be a little relaxed the first half, and maybe I could get into a move that would go somewhere early, but it turned out to be the exact opposite. It was probably the fiestiest crit I've been a part of, and after the first 30 minutes, I thought I was going to get shot out the back. I worked too hard the first part trying to get away, covering every move, and then I realized nothing was going to stick, so I sat back. A break went away for 5 or 6 laps, so I waited for the counter, thinking the chase might have worn a few people down, but my counter lasted a lap and a half, so once again I sat back. A few more attacks went and came back, until 2 FLC kids went and got a good gap. A couple kids started to bridge, but I saw them split up, so I attacked through the 4 corner part of the course, and got a little gap with another FLC kid. He pulled through and helped me reach the 2 who were originally in the break, and we picked up 1 more FLC kid on our way. So, with 5 laps to go, I was in a group with me, and 4 Fort Lewis kids. I tried to work as hard as I could so they wouldn't start attacking me early, and they ended up staying together until the final 4 corners before the finishing straight. I surged a little on the backside with 2 corners to go, then waited and made one of their kids come by. We came out of the last corner going pretty slow, but I heard all kinds of gears shifting behind me, so I jumped hoping I could catch the wheel when it came by. I managed to catch the second guy who came by, and held that position to the line.

I'm happy with my finish, but I hate how after a race, all you can think about is, "what if I would have done this?" or "could I have done that?" Oh well. I got 3rd, and I'm content with that. I finished this collegiate season much more successfully than I did last year, so that's a good thing. I didn't manage to pick up any collegiate wins, but at least I have something to shoot for next year. Now I just need to focus on finishing up school, then tearing apart the Gila. Thanks for checking in, I'm sure this update put most of you to sleep.

Friday, April 21, 2006


Evan thought we needed more cowbell

It may take a few minutes to load, but be patient and you shall be rewarded.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Squawker Classic.

This weekend was the annual Squawker classic in Durango, hosted by Fort Lewis College. This is always one of the best, hardest weekends of racing on the collegiate schedule, and typically, I get shelled. This weekend however was a little different. As I wrote earlier, the TTT and the uphill ITT were both alright. I felt fairly solid in the ITT and caught my one minute guy, so that felt good. Usually I'm the one getting passed in Time Trials, so it felt good to be on the other side of that.
A blurry start to our TTT.

My ITT start.

The road race is always intimidating to me because there is about 600-700 feet of climbing per lap, and those kids down there just go uphill fast. My freshman year I crashed out, Sophmore year I got smoked and pulled the plug, and last year I was the last rider to actually finish the race. This year with my new found form, I was actually able to stay with the main group through most of the race. A break went off the line, and continued to get bigger over that first lap, but I knew I couldn't ride with the kids that were in it, so I held back with hopes that it might not stick. It did stick, and about on lap 4 or 5 of 9 the group that I was in had been whittled down to 15 or so, and a good number of them made it across to the break. I guess that is when the leader attacked and stayed away. I however, stayed back with the group and finished toward the back of the 7 or 8 that were left. I came away with a 17th place, which is nothing to brag about by any means, but compared to the way I typically feel climbing, I'm pretty happy. I felt like I was a semi-factor in the race, and I managed to hurt at least a couple of people at different points in the race.

Trying to set tempo on the 3rd ascent of the front hill.

The finish of my race.

The trip there and back was by far the most interesting part of the whole weekend. The way down was great, for everyone except Dana, who had eaten some leftovers that he shouldn't have, and evidently got a little bug from them. Evan summed it up best with, "He puked a bunch."

The way home however was interesting to say the least. We made it over Wolf Creek pass without incident, and stopped in Del Norte (pronounced Dell Nort) to pee (3rd bathroom break in 1.5 hours). The van wouldn't shift into park at the gas station, so I reversed a couple times, took a lap of the lot, and it seemed to go into park. I turned it off, we peed, got some junk food, and when I went to start it up again, it wouldn't start. We quickly realized, it wasn't in park, and therefore wouldn't start. Supposedly cars start in neutral too, but it wouldn't. We tried rolling it to see if it would click into park, or something, we tried everything we could think of. Finally we pulled the sorority card and called AAA. They said a tow truck driver would be there in an hour. We also called our teamates in the other car to tell them we were stranded and see if they could take a couple kids back to Greeley who really needed to get back. They told us they were already 45 minutes past Del Norte and the kept on going. Cool! About 30 minutes into our wait, I decided to try starting it in drive, didn't work, 2nd gear, didn't work, 1st gear, didn't work, reverse, what do you know... it started right up. The weird part, was that the van wasn't in reverse. I soon found that it was in neutral, and every gear was one off from the gear indicator. We waited for the tow truck, and when he came we told him what was up. He told us we should be fine to drive home, but we should take the main road just in case. No problem, we were soon on our way.

An hour later, I hear someone needs a bottle because they have to pee. I said no one was peeing in any bottles, and that I'd pull over so I could go too. There was a huge shoulder, and a straight stretch of road, so I threw on the caution lights, slowed down and eased it onto the shoulder only to hear what sounded like a tire popping, but couldn't be a tire popping because our bad luck was over. Sure enough, I'd hit the one small jagged rock on the road and we had a flat. Great! I changed the flat, then drove the remaining 5 hours to Greeley. Our trip that started at 12:30pm, finally ended back in Greeley at just after 10pm.

I spent the rest of the night with Brian and Matt reminiscing about all the fun and trouble we'd had. Not until the next afternoon did I realize that my backpack had gone missing. I still can't find it, and I've searched everywhere I can think of for it, yet still have found nothing. Oh well, it's not that crucial of a time to lose all of your homework.

The flat tire.

Luckily my cheerleading section was just as enthusiastic about the tire change as they were about my race.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

I'm Home.

More later.

morning update

I got 20th in the uphill tt yesterday. My time was 10.06 and the winning time was 9.28 or something. If I could have ridden 1 second faster I would have been like 15th because there were 5 people with 10.05's. That's all for now. Hopefully i'll be able to climb with the big boys today. Wish me luck.

Saturday, April 15, 2006


Ilm writing on my teammates crackberry so ilm not gonna write much. The races went ok today. The ttt was interesting but I rode alright in the uphill tt. I was hoping to feel. A little stronger than I did but I think I still posted a decent time. We'll see how the results come back tomorrow. Tonight I went out for sushi with JARED, a kid I know on the flc team. I think everyone had a good time and the food was awesome. His girlfriend came with and we got hooked up since she works there. Now it looks like we'll be watching the wedding singer with legs up trying to get some snap back for tomorrow. There is some elitism dividing the team right now which is causing some tension but I can honestly say I have nothing to do with it. Anyway hopefully we can all get along tomorrow and hopefully everyone has a good road race. That's all for now. I saw Tommy d tractoring the rmcf ttt this morning and it was insane. I'm pretty sure they were gonna post the fastest time and I doubt anyone else even pulled through. Wish me luck for tomorrow maybe I'll update when I get home tomorrow night. By the way I,m looking for a fifty five or fifty six tooth chainring for the Gila so if anyone knows where I can get my hands on one let me know. Thanks for reading and sorry for the poor writing I know it's unlike me.

Monday, April 10, 2006


So, I just emailed both sanctioning bodies here in Colorado to see if I can get an upgrade in time to race the Gila as a 2. I'm a little frustrated though after learning this weekend that Boulder Roubaix, and none of the THF races for that matter, won't count towards upgrade points. I mean, it's not a huge deal, but the Stazio races, and Roubaix have been well known, popular races around here for some time, so I'll ride them either way, but why should my performances there not reflect the way I'm riding. I understand that the promoters kept them unsanctioned to keep entries down, but all this fighting between USCF, ACA, and now a third party here in Colorado ends up making it harder on us, the riders, when really it's just a political issue. Anyway, I'm not going to bitch and moan about it, I just hope I get my upgrade. Anyway, cross your fingers for me and maybe I'll get this ok to race the big guys.

Back to Roubaix.

Since yesterday is no story to write about, I thought I'd rewind a day or two and gloat in victory for a while. Here are a few pictures of the Boulder Roubaix.

This was from the start, some lady popped out of nowhere and started snapping pictures.

This is the finish.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

I'm Dum.

I rode pretty dumb today. My legs felt like crap at the start, but I chased down one move early on, and they seemed to open up, and started feeling pretty good. There was a CSU kid up the road just a little bit, and I saw an FLC kid jump across. I knew that FLC had brought their "A" team this weekend, and I thought I recognized the kid that went across as one of their strongmen. I decided it must be "the" move, so I went across, bringing one more of their guys with. Turns out it wasn't the kid I thought it was, and we still had 44 minutes to go. I figured I should probably roll with it, since we had a decent gap, and about 20 minutes later 5 more guys came across. I finished last out of the break, because I was stupid. Oh well. Live and learn. That's all, Grey's Anatomy is on soon, so I'd better go.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Boulder Roubaix

I won the Cat. 3 Boulder Roubaix today. I think this might be my biggest win yet, and it felt pretty good. Tomorrow is a collegiate crit in Golden, then possibly a Cat. 3 crit in the afternoon. We'll just have to see how the legs are going by tomorrow afternoon, judging by the way they feel right now, I'll only be doing 1 race tomorrow. Maybe I'll stick around and climb Lookout Mountain. I hear Tommy D set a new record up it today. I guess I'm not at all surprised, I just wish I could have seen it.

That is the rock I won at Roubaix. It'll have to do until I win a cobble I guess (It'll probably have to do forever then).

Dehydrated anyone?


Thanks again Mike. I'll let you all know how things go tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006


I didn't have class today since we are rotating through field trip groups for three wednesdays (last week, this week, and I get to go next week). So, instead of class, I managed to score about 2 hours of motorpacing with Mr. Mike Feighny at the wheel/handlebar and Scott and I riding in tow.

I thought racing was hard, but I guess that's just because I've never done a motorpaced workout before. I was so waxed after 2 hours that I was ready to lay down in the ditch, but we still had the brutal climb up to pinewood reservoir. This is typically a sub 20 minute climb, but I'd be blown away if I did it in under 30 or 35 today. The last couple miles were straight deathmarch, trying to get the pedals around, and searching for watts everywhere I could. I stood, sat, slid back on the saddle, slid forward, pulled hard on the bars, leaned over, sat straight up, and after all my searching, I realized all the watts I was looking for were pasted on the road about 30 kilometers behind me.

To add a happy ending to a long hard day, Mike met back up with us on his real motorcycle and bought a round of americano's for the three of us. I guess it's only a 7 and a half minute climb when you've got a hundred horsepower underneath you.

Now it's suppertime, I'll get some photos of the ride up later.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Koppenburg Pics

I stole a couple pictures from They are a sponsor of Rocky Mounts-Izze, so I guess I'm just advertising for them. This shot must have come from fairly early in the race. I think I was in the break of 10 or so at this point.

This is the winning move. The four of us rode together from about 3 laps to go I think.
This is the final dirt stretch. My breakaway companions were about 10-15 seconds down the road at this point.

CU Crit

Results from the CU Crit are up on Cyclingnews. That 2nd place was a long ways from 1st, and even farther from the guys in the category listed above mine, but at least it's moving in the right direction. Luckily there are no pictures of me racing in those lucky shorts. Kennedy, consider yourself blessed to have seen in person, my lower back flapping in the wind all day.

Sunday, April 02, 2006


Today's race went perfectly for me. I had a decent start, moved up well on the first dirt stretch, and was like 2nd over the "Koppenburg" wall the first lap. I was expecting the break to go then, but nothing happened. No one really wanted to ride because it was crazy windy. I sat in for another lap, and made the selection over the wall the next lap. I think there were 9 or 10 of us, and we rode in that group for a lap or two until someone hit the wall pretty hard and drew 5 of us out of that original selection. There was a 5280 kid, an U23 National Team kid, 1 Echelon rider, an Al's rider, and one CPT guy I think. I guess that is 6 of us, but the Al's kid and the 5280 rider both flatted on different laps, so there were 4 of us at the end.

I kept gapping the 3 of them when I'd pull through, so I had a good idea I was having a better day than them, so I just concentrated on playing everything conservatively. I have the problem of wasting a lot of energy when I'm feeling good, then it comes to a critical point and all of the sudden I'm not feeling it. Fortunately that didn't happen today. I attacked on a tailwind section with half a lap to go. I don't think anyone was expecting it, plus I was running an 11 tooth cassette and it didn't look like anyone else was, so I easily put a little time into them on the tailwind downhill section. I managed to hold my lead through the dirt section and up the Kopp, then across the line.

It was cool to feel so good in the first big ACA race of the year. Hopefully this form will stick around for a while because I'm really enjoying it so far. The Gila is still a month off, so a lot can happen between now and then, but luckily I've got some good advice and a pretty full schedule that should keep me from riding myself into the ground between now and then. I suppose I should get to bed, this time change is messing with me a little bit, and I have some homework to do in the morning. Thanks for stopping in, and be sure to check out all the Promontory and Oval pictures. Just follow the link below.