Thursday, August 30, 2007

Pop quiz hotshot, it's dark in an hour, and you still need to get a workout in, what do you do?

The answer: hill repeats.

There is short steep climb a few blocks from my house that I've done repeats on before. Jordan was up for intervals, so we jumped on the bikes, did a quick 10 minute warm-up and cranked out 6 repeats. The amazing thing is Jordan stayed right on my wheel almost to the top each time. Dang. He's really getting strong.

Of course, 6 wasn't enough for him, but I convinced him we needed to cool down while there was still light. I think we'd still be out there racing up the climb right now if I let him.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

2007 MCF Time Trialist of the Year Results

The MCF TTY results for 2007 are in. The scores are based on riders performances in the following races this season:

State TT
Black Dog TT on June 27th
District Track Kilo
District Track Pursuit

A special thanks to David Thimsen for tabulating the results. Congrats to the top 3 in each category.

Open Men
1. Tim Mulrooney
2. Joe Johnson
3. Ray Jasacki

Open Women
1. Kristy Lavigne
2. Theresa Moriarty
3. Gwen Steele

Masters 35+ Men
1. Jim Cullen
2. Jay Henderson
3. Russ Loucks

Masters 50+ Men
1. Doug Register
2. Rich Spielberg
3. Brian Abery

Masters 40+ Women
1. Benita Warns
2. Julia Mairs

1. Raymond Warns-Ledesma
2. Jordan Cullen
3. Jake Mittelsteadt

Complete Open Men and Junior results
Complete Masters 35+ and 50+ Men results
Complete Womens results

Fun with family and friends @ the MN State Fair

I took a vacation day from work, and my family and I went to the fair with Dan and Linda. We had a great time, but the highlight of the day had to be Linda and Jordan's ride on the thrill ride "Slingshot". It shoots you into the air 100mph @ 6G's. Linda said it was like a nightmare. Jordan thought it was awesome. I've got a video of the whole thing, but I promised Linda I wouldn't post it. Just a great snapshot of their faces on the takeoff.

Maren joined them on another scary ride:

Like all state fair goers, we ate way too much greasy fried foods. Dan and Linda split a little early, but we stuck around to watch the Kare11 6PM news live. We even got on TV at the end of the broadcast. It was one of the best times we have ever had at the fair.

On Machinery Hill:

On the Midway:

Sunday, August 26, 2007

State Track Timed Events

Click here for official results.

We weren't going to be able to do the district track events, due to a conflict with the WISPORT races last weekend. As luck would have it, the rain postponed the events to today. It was Jordan's first official race at the track. He raced as a Cat 5, and did the Kilo plus the 4K.

Kilo - 1:33 (6 seconds slower than 15 year old Raymond Warns-Ledesma)
4K - 6:20 (3 seconds slower than Raymond)

Very nice results Jordo, and excellent benchmarks for the future. Carla and Maren were even there to witness the historic event. Thanks for the cheers girls.

I am a cat 2 on the track, and did the Kilo, 4K, and the team pursuit. I used my road bike for the Kilo and 4K, but I had to ride a track bike in the pursuit for safety reasons (since track bikes don't have brakes, and road bikes do). Skibby kindly offered to lend me his after he was done with his team pursuit (Thanks buddy).

I started both the Kilo and 4K in a 53x17, and dropped it down to the 53x15 once I was up to speed. As expected, I rode another unspectacular 1:16 in the kilo, which was 6th out of 8 Cat 2's. Hollywood was pretty proud to beat me by 1 second, posting a 1:15. I bow to your short distance superiority.

I drew Sickboy as my pursuit rival. I rode the same gears as in the kilo, and posted a 5:11, which I was happy with given the strong south wind. My best is a 5:08 at districts last year. Sickboy kept it close, and set a PR of 5:13. Timmer broke the magical 5 minute barrier, posting a new PR of 4:59. Way to go Timmer. Here were the top 5 4K times independent of category:

1. Timmer - 4:59
2. Joe Johnson - 5:05
3. Brian Crosby - 5:07
4. Jim Cullen - 5:11
5. Dan Currell - 5:12

I didn't get a chance to ride the track at all on Skibby's bike prior to our team pursuit. Obviously, we also didn't get a chance to practice either. I simply put my pedals on Skibby's bike, raised the seat, and reported to the start line. We chose the order of Timmer, Currell, me, then Crosby. This was so that Timmer was pulling through on our second strongest rider, Crosby. We rode fairly tight and pretty smooth. We clocked a 4:56, beating Timmer's solo time, which indicates we did pretty well as a team. Not bad for no practice, and me on a borrowed bike. I hadn't ridden a fixed gear since 2001. It felt pretty good, but you still won't see me up there on Thursday nights. I promised Carla, and I'm sticking to it.
Click the picture below for a larger image:
(R-L: Timmer, Currell, Jimmer, Crosby)

Cat 1/2 4K Podium:
1. Brian Crosby - 5:07
2. Jim Cullen - 5:11
3. Dan Currell - 5:12

Team Pursuit Podium:
1st (Cullen, Currell, Crosby, Mulrooney) - 4:56
2nd (Kruise, Register, Coughlin, Skibby) - 5:07 (Jordan stood in for Skibby)

The quote of the day from Hollywood, "Track guys covet their medals even more than special Olympians." Not exactly PC, but probably accurate.

Another result worth noting was Hans, Franz, and Currell riding the Team Pursuit in an impressive time of 49.6. A new district record. Nice job guys.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Maren's First High School Cross Country Meet

Maren finished an impressive 45th out of 113 in her first high school cross country meet today in Eau Claire, WI (on the right in royal blue). She ran the 4K course in 20:53. She said she went out too fast, and felt a little sick in the middle of the race. There were other girls who were throwing up while running. Way to push yourselves girls, but yuck. Maren was able to keep her breakfast down, and stayed upright too. Some of the other girls were falling. It was also Maren's first time running with spikes, and she said it felt kind of weird, especially on hardpack and tree roots.

I was depressed I couldn't make the meet, due to the State RR conflict, but I'm looking forward to seeing her run at the next one. You go girl.

Click here for results

Juniors MN State Road Race Recap

I followed the juniors State RR on my bike instead of in the car. More miles for me, plus less hinderance to traffic. There were about 7 older juniors, and 6 younger juniors. They started at the same time, but they were not supposed to work together, since the youngers do 1 lap, and the olders do 2. I was sceptical about how that was going to work, but I was right behind them to try and make sure they didn't work together.

The older juniors pulled away after the start, but only a little. By the time they got to the right onto Tower, Kody McCracken wanted to start racing, and jumped around the older juniors. Sam Anderson followed, then Jordan, then Aaron Shaw. Jake Mittelstaedt and Tristan Manderfeld did not make the split. Shortly after, Colton Barrett attacked the older juniors on the downhill, and eventually, all the juniors, minus Jake and Tristan were together.

They started the first climb together. Older juniors Colton, Tony Olson, and Alex Meyer got a gap over the top. Younger junior Sam was poised to get away, but dropped his chain. The other 3 youngers went around Sam as he stopped to put his chain back on. Sam had no trouble rejoining them on the downhill.

At this point there are 3 separate groups up front. 3 olders, then 4 youngers, then 3 olders. Kody was on the front most of the time, pulling the other 3 younger juniors along. After Albany, Sam attacked on a rise, and Kody was tired from being on the front, and Aaron and Jordan couldn't chase either. Sam caught and passed the 3 older juniors. Kody pulled Aaron and Jordan up to the 3 older juniors but didn't go around them. This was not good, since now the 3 younger juniors could get help catching Sam from the older juniors. I asked the 3 olders to let the other 3 do the chasing, and they kindly obliged, and let them through.

I asked Aaron and Jordan to help Kody chase Sam, and they started a rotation. It was great to see them work together, but it was pretty clear to me that Sam was gone for good. As they turned onto the finish leg, I could see they were going to end up catching the Women's Cat 4 field which had started 5 minutes in front of them. I told the juniors to just keep riding, and pass them on the left if they catch them. This whole time, Kody remained on the front. I rode up to the women to give them some advance warning that the juniors were coming through for their finish and they kindly let them by.

Coming into the finish, Jordan knew to key of Aaron. Aaron jumped first, and Jordan got on his wheel. Kody, clearly tired from all the time spent on the front, was unable to join them. Aaron was able to pull away from Jordan and that is how they finished.

1. Sam Anderson (age 14)
2. Aaron Shaw (age 14)
3. Jordan Cullen (age 12)
4. Kody McCracken (age 13)
5. Jake Mittelstaedt (age 13)
6. Tristan Manderfeld (age 12)

Juniors 10-12 Podium Photo:
1. Jordan Cullen (right)
2. Tristan Manderfeld (left)

Juniors 13-14 Podium Photo:
1. Sam Anderson (middle)
2. Aaron Shaw (left)
3. Kody McCracken (right)

Masters 35+ MN State Road Race Recap

Photos compliments of

Neutral Rollout:

The climb on the backside of the course:

Leading the skinny guys down the hill:

Nice weather, finally. We had Painman, Goblirsh, Rennert and myself to contest the masters 35+. Flanders had a full compliment of riders, Maxwell was there of course, but the most notable entrants were Mike Johnson and his CVCC squad of 4, including Joas and Tischler. Shishilla even showed up in a Medtronic jersey, the first road race I've ever seen him at. We were set for 4 laps.

The first lap was pretty easy. I attacked on a couple of the rises, and even got a little gap prior to the second big hill, but I knew I wasn't going anywhere by myself. The second time up the hill was the killer. Johnson attacked midway up the climb with a vengeance, and put the whole field into oxygen debt. Painman was able to join him. For some reason, I suffered big time on the climb, maybe too much work during the first lap? Just like at Square Lake, I got dropped going over the top. I chased hard, but they were chasing Johnson and Painman, and pulling away.

I thought my race was over, especially after the follow vehicle and wheel car went around me. Then I saw Mlinar in the ditch. He had touched a wheel and gone down. I looked up the road, and the group was a good 15-20 seconds ahead. I continued to bury myself, and finally caught them in Albany. Whew. That was close.

Shortly after Albany, Johnson and Painman were caught. After that, I sat in for the rest of the lap, marking Johnson's wheel. Coming into the finish leg, Johnson amped it up, and asked me to come through. Sorry, no can do. He sat up, and Mike Dietzman of Flanders went up the road. Hiebert chased, but didn't make it. Then an unknown CVCC rider was able to bridge up. The 2 of them dangled off the front for the 3rd, and most of the 4th lap. Painman and others kept them close, but know one was interested in shutting them down. I just sat in the back with Johnson, and waited for the sprint. At some point, Goblirsh got a flat, and the wheel car was way behind, and by the time he changed it out, there was no way for him to catch back up.

Coming into the last couple hills, Hollywood bridged across to Dietzman (the CVCC rider got dropped), and they started to pull away. On the final climb, Hollywood set tempo, but Dietzman couldn't match it, and the field reeled them both in by the top. I took over at the front at that point, to mark moves. My plan was to lead out the sprint, and try to setup Painman and Rennert. I knew Johnson and Joas would be the ones to beat. Unfortunately for Hollywood, his pedal came loose, and the wheel car didn't stop when he tried to wave them down. Bummer.

Charlie Jacobs attacked turning into the final stretch, and I covered him. Then another rider attacked, and Rennert joined him. I sat up and let the gap go, and no one came around me. They got a little ahead of us, and then Coyle jumped, and I covered. We all came back together, and I took 2nd wheel behind Tischler, knowing he'd be riding for Johnson. I jumped at the "reduced speed ahead" sign, just before the finish line came into sight. I figured I might catch a few guys out who hadn't measured the finish very well. I peeled off the front with about 200meters to go. Like I expected, Johnson had my wheel, then Joas, then Painman and Rennert. Rennert looked good, but Painman was sprinting in the saddle, so I knew he was probably out of it. Johnson probably could have won it, but he let Joas by, with Rennert finishing a strong 3rd. Painman rolled in 8th. I think I was about 20th.

Unofficial Results:
1. Joas
2. Johnson (Wisconsin)
3. Rennert
4. MacGibbon
5. Dobbertin

I was very happy with the result. Rennert has been getting very fast lately, and for him finish a field sprint that well was impressive, and unexpected. Painman suffered from the effects of his "eight" times being off the front. It was as aggressive as I had ever seen him, and I witnessed him off the front at least 4 times. I'll have to trust him on the other 4. Nice job LSC.

Click here for Official Results

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Black Dog Finale

The weather held out for the final Black Dog. It was a little sticky and humid, but light winds made for some fast times. Several battles were waged, including a battle between Lunatic Biker, Jordan, and Kristy Kreme for a Gopher Wheelmen hat offered up by Sherry Berde. There were no less than 4 tandems racing as well, including Jordan and me, Charlie and Sherry, and Ray and Debbie.

Jordan and I got early starts for our solo efforts, then did the tandem at the end. We had to scramble a bit because I had to switch his only set of pedals from his bike to the tandem after his solo effort.

My solo effort went very well, right up until the end. I got a rear flat on my clincher disc in the final turn under the Cedar Ave bridge. Luckily, I was able to stay upright and ride it in without losing too much speed, although I almost lost it a couple times. It probably cost me 5-10 seconds. I still finished in 14:54, meaning I probably was on a pace to set my PR.

Kristy was looking fast on her "Jordan Slayer" and Lunatic was sporting some clip-on bars from Kruiser. There was smack talk back and forth leading into this, so it was definitely for bragging rights. The result: Jordan broke 18 minutes for the first time, finishing in 17:46. That's a full 2 minutes faster than his time at the first Black Dog this season. Way to go buddy! Kristy had a run in with some punk kids not once, but twice. Bummer. She rode an 18:48, which was very close to her PR of 18:43, in spite of the punks. Lunatic scored a PR in 18:28. Here is Jordan proudly sporting his spoils from the friendly rivalry.

After our solo efforts, and the scramble to switch the pedals, we warmed up a little. Jordan and I haven't ridden the tandem once this year, but we were ready to try and beat our PR from last year of 15:24. We had a great ride, and broke 15 minutes, clocking a 14:57. On top of that, we beat Charlie and Sherry for the first time by a measly 1 second. Ray and Debbie rode their princess dragger to a time of 21:41. Nicely done.

The father-son battle in the Mittelstaedt family went to Dad Steve who clocked his first time under 20 minutes in 19:37. Jake rode his second fastest time ever in 21:05. Dad is still the fastest at Black Dog, at least until next year.

A couple of my Masters 50+ teammates had great nights as well. Dave Ludwigson won in a time of 15:53, and John Stamm posted his fastest time ever of 16:00. Well done guys.

There was also $100 on offer to anyone who could beat Doug Swanson's course record of 13:50. Timmer was closest in his second fastest time of the year of 14:15, so the record stands.

Here is a summary of all the times I wrote down:
Timmer - 14:15
Haas - 14:34
Casper - 14:39
Jimmer- 14:54
Shishilla - 14:54
Jimmer/Jordan - 14:57 (tandem)
Charlie/Sherry - 14:58 (tandem)
Ludwigson - 15:53
Stamm - 16:00
Jordan - 17:46
Lunatic Biker - 18:28
Kristy Kreme - 18:47
Steve Mittelstaedt - 19:37
Jake Mittelstaedt - 21:05
Lunatic/Debbie - 21:41 (tandem)

Here is a shot of Kristy collecting her 1st place series prize money for Women's Stock.

Here is a shot of Jordan and Jake who finished 1st and 2nd in the Juniors under 15 for the series.

Here is a shot of Shishilla and I who finished 1st and 2nd for the series in the Masters 35+. It was a close battle, with only a total of 7 seconds difference over the entire series, with me averaging 14:55, and John averaging 14:56. What a close battle.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Chicken Fight - Sort of

Filmed the Saturday night of the St. Cloud Stage Race at the Grandstay Hotel in St. Cloud.

This video is exactly the reason why I hate hearing my own voice on tape.

Sorry, I took this with a digital camera length-wise, and so you'll just have to turn your head.

Hey Kristy, you want a piece of me?

Get in line.

Racing in the Rain

Jordan and I headed East into Central WI to do a couple WISPORT races this weekend. It was 60deg and pouring rain during both races, but we endured nonetheless.

The Mauston RR was a 27 miles, on a fairly hilly course (the Garmin puked on the elevation due to the weather). Brandon Gavic was there with some dead guy's bone in his shoulder, due to his crash at Alpine Valley during Superweek. Brone's Bike Shop was there in force as well as Pautch and Benzler from Spring Street.

The racing started right away, with the previously mentioned riders pressing the pace on the way out of town. As we approached the first climb, I was in a group of 5 which had a small gap. Gavic wasn't there, so I figured he'd be coming up. Pautch led us up the climb. Gavic caught us towards the top, and started off a hard tempo to keep the rest at bay. Only about 15 of us made that split. On top of that, I found out after the race that Lance Niles' chain broke on the climb, taking a key player out of the race.

The downhills were fast, and a few guys were pretty tentative, including Gavic, who had no interest in falling. By the top of the second climb, we dropped a few more, and Gavic had to chase back on, with no problem. Over the next couple climbs, we thinned it down to 10 of us. At the top of the last climb, Gavic got a front flat and was out of the race. Bummer. Benzler and Ping braked on the last fast downhill, and fell off as well, leaving us at a total of 7.

Jim Moore from Brone's, who spent most of the race riding tempo on the front, continued to lead us during the final few miles. I rode the course the night before, so I knew all that was left was some flats, a corner, and then the finish.

With about 2 miles to go, I was stuck 2nd wheel, and didn't want to be there going into the corner. I moved out, and swung to the back, which ended up being a huge mistake. I should have just stayed 2nd wheel. The spray made seeing up the road very difficult, but I knew we were close to the finish corner. Pautch jumped, and I simply got in line at 6th wheel. Next thing I know, I look up to judge the corner, and there is the finish in about 100 feet. Doh! What a rookie move. I simply assumed the finish was around the corner. Note to self: Always specifically locate the finish prior to starting the race. Like I needed another Skibby Award Nomination after the train incident.

So I ended up 6th out of 7. Ken Haines won, with Mike Suntgen 2nd, Griego 3rd, and Pautch 4th.

Jordan had a great race, and loved the hills. He said he would drop the group he was with on the hills, only to have some of them come back to him in the flats. He was the only under 14 rider in the cold & wet race. Big surprise.

We woke up Sunday morning to more of the same, 60 and rain. The course was relatively flat with a few rollers, roughly equivalent to Withrow (the Garmin puked again on the elevation). I had an early start, and felt really great. I had some good rabbits to catch, and thought I put up a potential winning time of 32:13 for an average of 27.1mph. No cigar. I knew Lance Niles would be the one to beat and I was right. He took almost a minute out of me. Maybe it would have been closer if he could have finished the road race the day before, but I can live with a beat by a fastie like Lance.

Unofficial TT Results:
1. Lance Niles - 31:21
2. Jim Cullen - 32:13
3. Griego - 33:05
4. Mike Suntgen - 33:09
5. Greg Pautch - 33:12
6. Tom Starr - 33:29

As you would expect, Jordan was the only kid willing to brave the elements and rode a fast 41:45. He scored a handmade coffee mug for his effort. Way to go buddy.

Friday, August 17, 2007

MCF ROY Final Results

The MCF ROY competition is an annual ranking system intended to allow riders to measure their performances in a series of selected events throughout the racing season. For 2007, your score was taken based on your best 7 of 10 races.

A special thanks to Russ Loucks for tabulating all the scores for the 13 different categories.

2007 MCF Rider of the Year Winners:
Nora Bengel - Junior Girls < 15
Jordan Cullen - Junior Boys < 15
Dano Barrett - Junior Girls 15+
Colton Barrett - Junior Boys 15+
Chad Christenson - Masters 4/5 30+
Jim Cullen - Masters 35+
Dave Herbert - Masters 50+
Tim Mulrooney - Men Cat 1/2
Matt McDonough - Men Cat 3
Paul Schoeller - Men Cat 4/5
Linda Sone - Women Cat 1/2
Camilla Schmitz - Women Cat 3
Laura Krueger - Women Cat 4

And a special shout out to all my LSC teammates who scored high in the standings:
Andy Frye - 2nd Masters 4/5 30+
Paul Rennert - 3rd Masters 35+
Patrick Horrigan - 3rd Men Cat 3
Bryan Loecken - 4th Masters 4/5 30+
Dave Ludwigson - 5th Masters 50+
Chris Clark - 5th Men Cat 4/5
Neil Hailstone - 6th Masters 4/5 30+

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Final TNT

8/14/07 TNT Results Posted

2007 TNT Overall Results

Jordan and I managed to both ride our personal best times at the final TNT. I rode a 23:50, a 9 second beat of my previous best, and 55 seconds faster than 2 weeks previous. Jordan rode a 30:14, a 1:09 beat of his previous best, and 2:10 faster than 2 weeks previous. Definitely a productive night, and the best way to finish the series.

Painman even made an appearance, but not to race. He rode out from his place to meet Holly and Connor, and watch Holly race. It sounded like she was happy with her ride, and the boys were very proud of her. Connor was a hoot. When Linda wasn't whisking him away to play with the dogs, he was running around asking to get in every one's car. And what a jabberjaw. He's about as shy as Painman.

The conditions were mostly calm with almost no wind. Timmer and some of the other usual suspects were at the alternative Ride and Glide Withrow TT on the east side. Congrats to Timmer on smashing my old Withrow TT course record of 29:25 by an impressive 52 seconds, pushing the new record to 28:33.

8/14/07 Withrow TT Results

Doug Swanson and Dan Casper were present at TNT to lite up the course. Doug ended up destroying the old record by over 30 seconds in 22:35.
1. Doug Swanson - 22:35
2. Dan Casper - 23:27
3. Jim Cullen - 23:50
4. Brett Lovaas - 24:05
5. Paul Rennert - 24:11
6. Charlie Townsend - 24:18

Due to Doug's fast time, nothing changed in the overall standings from 2 weeks ago:
1. Dan Casper
2. Tim Mulrooney
3. John Shishilla
4. Jim Cullen
5. Charlie Jacobs

Afterwards, we hung out at the parking lot for a while before heading to Umbria for Calzones with Dan, Doug, Linda, and Waataja. Doug entertained us with all his ideas for inventions which, unfortunately for him, have already been invented. He was wound up, and couldn't stop talking. I was getting exhausted just from listening and laughing at his anecdotes. Casper set Jordan up with a Grandstay stocking cap. Many thanks Dan.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Are they small, or are we big?

Who looks smaller, Chad or Charlie? For reference, I'm 6'3" and Patrick is 6'5".

I can't believe Chad let me (and my heavy butt) beat him up a couple of the French Cols (for the record: Aravis, Colombiere, Saisies, and Telegraphe - the rest were yours Painman).

Speaking from my experience in France, most professional cyclists are about Chad and Charlie's size. Eros Poli was an anomaly.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Town Hall Team Time Trial

For the second year in a row, I was unsuccessful in putting together a 4-man all Loon State team for the Town Hall Team Time Trial. Last year, I rode with Grandstay and we ended up 2nd by just 7 short seconds to Silver Cycling. This year I joined Grand Performance for the day and rode with Dan Casebeer, Charlie Townsend, and John Shishilla.

We had no practice sessions, but I knew Shishilla, Casebeer, and I would match up well. I wasn't sure how Charlie would fair, but I know he is incredibly tenacious. We rode together prior to the start for a grand total of about 15 minutes. We talked strategy and determined our order, then reported to the start line.

This year, there was a strong NW wind which made the going tough on the way out, but super fast on the way back. We gelled as a team almost immediately after the start. Our order was Casebeer, Shishilla, me, then Charlie. It was like clockwork. Our first turn around was a little sloppy, but OK. We flew down to the second turn around, and did a much better job on that one. All that was left was to fight the headwind a couple miles to the finish, and we still had all 4 of us taking pulls.

On the way home, Charlie detached for just a little bit, but came right back. Casebeer took the final pull into the finish, and Shishilla and I wound up the sprint for the line. Unfortunately, we gapped Dan a little, and he trailed in behind us by maybe a second or two. Charlie rolled in just behind Dan. What a great team effort, especially having never ridden together until today.

Shishilla and Casebeer were as strong as I had anticipated, but I was even more impressed with how Charlie rode. Job well done boys.

In the end, we won the age 160+ category, but came up just 1 second short of the overall, which was taken by Flanders. Silver Cycling attempt to defend last years title was thwarted by a sick Aric Hareland, leaving them to start with only 3 (Timmer, Homme, and Flood). They finished with a fast time, but dropped Flood in the process. Here are the results with teammates names if I know them.

1. Flanders (Scott, Woell, Froemming, Zimmerman) - 54:58
2. GP (Casebeer, Shishilla, Townsend, Cullen) - 54:59 (1st 160+)
3. Brones (Brone, Niles, Suntgen, Whyte) - 55:17
4. Grandstay (Casper, Jacobs, Koeneman, Paulson) - 55:35
DQ - Team Hollywood (Timmer, Homme, Flood) - 55:54 (Only finished 2 riders).
5. Birchwood (Maxwell, Hiebert, McDonough, Lockwood) - 56:43
6. Silver Cycling (Abery, Stein, Herbert, Bruininks) - 57:07 (2nd 160+)
7. Achtung - 58:25 (3rd 160+)
8. Silver Cycling 'D' - 59:31
9. Silver Cycling Dream Team - 1:00:08 (4th 160+)
10. First Light - 1:00:27 (5th 160+)
11. GP - 1:01:16 (6th 160+)
12. Buelter's Beauties - 1:01:27
13. AUC - 1:01:51
14. Ragtag - 1:06:31
15. Swiss Missile - 1:13:45

Official Results

Last Year's Results

The composite team going by the creative name the "Woodettes" won the women's division (pictured below).

Here is a shot of Pmax giving the circus bike a whirl. Jordan rode the thing all the way from registration, to the start line and back. What a nut. Thanks again to Julie for hanging with him again today.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Gopher to Badger 5K

Carla and Maren were out doing the Gopher to Badger 5K running race Saturday. They both posted personal best times. Congrats ladies.


Carla has had a recurring calf injury recently, which she aggravated about a 1/2 mile into the race. She kept running, and said when it got tough at the end, she just kept thinking of Skibby and saying to herself "I'm not going to be DFL."

Birchwood Juniors Road Race

I don't know about you guys, but in this pic Jordan looks too far back on his bike. I may need to move his saddle forward.

Photos complements of Skinny Ski.

My first order of business after finishing my race was riding 6 miles back to the registration location. It was just after 1PM, and I thought they started at 1:30. I fought the headwind all the way back, hoping that Jordan would be there waiting for me. Thankfully he was, and they didn't start until 2PM. Whew.

The older and younger juniors all started together. There were 4 younger juniors, and around 6 older juniors. Jake had done the Hudson TT in the morning, and didn't feel like doubling up, but we talked him into it. Hey, if you want to get fast, you gotta race. I'm proud of you Jake.

During the beginning of the race, I caught up to the women's 1/2/3 field just as one of them was having an issue with their rear wheel. I stopped to assist, and the skinny ski guy caught me on film. Nice tan lines Jimmer.

The younger juniors had to do only 1 lap, and the older had to do 2. Jake ended up disconnecting from the group early in the lap, but that didn't stop him from riding hard all the way to the finish. The other younger juniors stayed together with the older juniors all the way to the base of Nason hill. Aaron and Jordan stayed with the front group on the hill, while Nora slipped back.

They came into the finish rise, and Aaron and Jordan started their sprint. Jordan gave it his best, but Aaron was just too fast. I was so proud of him for giving it his all, and staying with the older juniors for the whole lap. I had to remind him that wasn't the case at the spring road races. He's really progressing well as a racer, and having fun while doing it.

Unofficial Results:
1. Aaron Shaw
2. Jordan
3. Nora
4. Jake

That's not rain...

One of the many pleasures of bike racing on a hot summer day. At one point, a few raindrops fell on us during the race today. Later, I felt raindrops again, but there wasn't a cloud in the sky. I realize, that's not rain, that's bodily fluids coming off the riders in front of me. Gross.

A True Race of Attrition - Birchwood RR

Photo complements of Skinny Ski.

The combined the Cat 1/2 and Masters 35+ fields, due to low turnout. We had 11 Cat 1/2's, and around 20 Masters 35+. Thankfully, they only made us do 5 laps (scheduled for M35+) instead of the scheduled 6 for the Cat 1/2. Many of the Cat 1/2's were at the Tour of Elk Grove or Tour of KC.

There was a 4 mile neutral rollout to the start from registration. On top of that, the finish line is 6 miles from registration. This made logistics a bit of a problem for me with Jordan, since he was racing in the afternoon. Thankfully, Charlie Jacobs girlfriend Julie (now fiance) drove him over to the feed zone, and hung out with him until the race was over, and then shuttled him back to registration. Huge Thanks.

During the neutral rollout, Andy Powell blew a tire. Hollywood asked if we could neutralize the first lap to see if he can catch back on, since his whole family is watching him race. We do so, but to no avail. Andy never made it back.

The first time up the Nason hill was tough, but not too bad. A couple guys rolled off the front as we approached the finish line on the first lap, and I jumped to close it down. With a little help, we closed it down, but I knew there would be a counter in the feed zone. Sure enough. Thankfully, Painman made the move. About half a dozen guys slowly rolled away.

It was during this, that I had some issues. I was having regurge issues. This happened to me at the St. Cloud RR too. Not sure what the deal is. Eating too close to the beginning of the race?

The second time up Nason hill was like death for me. Timmer and company were determined to bridge across, and I was in the hurt locker. I fell off at the top of the climb, and couldn't make it back on the downhill. I haven't even finished 2 laps, and I'm dropped? Luckily, the group shattered, letting Timmer and a few others go, and slowed. This gave me just enough opportunity to bridge back up to the tail of the group.

Mike Johnson and Gerry Finken, missed the break, and were driving at the front for the entire 3rd lap. I sat in the back and continued to fight with my regurge. I didn't have too much problem with the 3rd time up the hill. In fact, that is when we started catching people who were popped from the breakaway. First Charlie Jacobs, then another, and another. Passing the finish line, Red Lantern informs us that Painman has lost contact with the break. So much for sitting in.

We caught up to Painman in the feedzone, and I went to the front and started working with Finken, Bell, and Johnson. It didn't matter, the break continued to pull away. The penultimate climb was pretty tame. We held back just a little, to make sure Johnson and Finken made it over since they had been working so hard. Then my teammate Rennert informs me Painman fell off. I sat on Bell's wheel, and didn't take a pull, until he made it back.

On the tailwind section, Bell and Finken got away. Johnson and company chased a bit, but the duo was just too strong. Painman came to the front for the rest of the last lap, and rode tempo into the final climb.

One of our goals going into the race was for Rennert to beat Cragle to secure his top 3 in the M35+ ROY. They were both at the front of our group headed into the final climb. The last time up the climb was pretty brutal. People cramping up left and right. I got caught back a bit, and came up on Cragle and said "Come on Doc, let's go." Nothing doing, the cramp was too much.

I bridged across the gap to Rennert and a small group of around 6 that were left at the front. We crested the climb, and I told Rennert that Cragle had popped. I went to the front and led down the hill to keep the pressure on, so no one could easily come back. It came down to about 6 of us sprinting it out. Hollywood jumped first, then Rennert, and the rest. I moved up from the back, and could see that Rennert looked to have it locked up. I pulled along side, and cheered him all the way to the finish. What a great result.

The final number in the break up the road was 7, with the duo in between us and them, meaning we were sprinting for 10th, last place in the money. Whoo-hoo!

Unofficial Results:
1. Zimmerman
2. Timmer
3. Woell
4. Snides
5. Maxwell (1st 35+)
6. Flanders
7. Mlinar (2nd 35+)
8. Bell (3rd 35+)
9. Finken
10. Rennert (4th 35+)
11. Cullen (5th 35+)
12. Schuller (6th 35+)

Official Results

Looks like Zim has come into some real form. Timmer has definitely earned the Mr. Consistency Award. The only guy out there always at the top of both the TT and Road Results.

Congrats to Pmax on the big 35+ win that has eluded him this season. Your own team race nonetheless. Way to go man. You get my nomination for most aggressive rider award for this season.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Birchwood RR Recon

I've ridden the roads up there hundreds of times, but I though Jordan should see this weekends Birchwood Road Race Course.

The profile below is finish line to finish line for a full lap. GPS logged the distance at 14.25miles, 670ft of climbing per lap.

We used to do team rides on the weekends back in the day, and stop in Marine on St. Croix for breakfast. We nicknamed Nason Hill "pancake hill", since they'd always come back up when we climbed it after breakfast.

Hollywood hooked Jordan up with a cool pair of Oakley Oil Drums. Hollywood was quoted "I hate to take the kids money, but I just couldn't stand seeing him in his big jewel sunglasses anymore."

Loving life at the Dog

Me and my best bud. Thanks to All the Way Ray for the photo.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Personal Best Times Two

For the record, my Garmin GPS has consistently show the current Black Dog Distance to be exactly 6.78miles.

Jordan and I both recorded our fastest times ever at Black Dog. I did a 14:48 - 30 seconds faster than 2 weeks ago - 3 seconds faster than my previous best. Jordan nearly broke 18 minutes - 18:04 - 32 seconds faster than 2 weeks ago - 10 seconds faster than his previous best.

Most of the times were fast, certainly faster than 2 weeks ago:
Timmer - 14:16
Casper - 14:23
Curt Wood - 14:38
Shishilla - 14:38 (personal best)
Abery - 14:47
Jimmer - 14:48

Hollywood even busted out his best time this year, 15:25, on a one-off deep dish HED3C. Cool wheel. A frustrated Waataja matched his personal best of 15:09. Don't give up dude, you've still go one more chance.

As for the friendly rivalry, Jordan and Lunatic Biker had a great night, and Kristy Kreme struggled a bit, coming off a cold:
Jordan - 18:04
Lunatic Biker - 18:40 (personal best)
Kristy Kreme - 19:26

Another hotly contested battle surfaced too. I gave Jake some pointers on our Prescott Loop on Monday. I suggested that he push bigger gears. I also lowered his handlebars over an inch. What a difference. He improved his time by an amazing 2 minutes! In fact, so much improvement, he nearly beat his dad, Steve:

Steve - 20:26
Jake - 20:28

Word is that Steve plans to lower his own handlebars for the final Black Dog. Good luck Steve.

Below is what I would describe as an ideal HR profile for me at Black Dog, steadily increasing throughout the effort. Ave HR = 173. Max HR = 186. Ave Spd = 27.5mph.

Jordan "poses", ready to rock the dog:

Maren and Carla were at the Dog as well, spectating. Maren recently got a Pink Electra Townie 3 (pictured below). She plans to race it at the final Black Dog. How cool is that?

After the Dog, we hung out for a while, and then a bunch of us hit Baker's Square near Hollywood's Shop. Timmer, Hollywood, Kristy, Jimmer, Jordan, Casper, and Sone. Good times. Jordan is never going to forget the summer of 2007.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Jake's First Prescott Loop Experience

Jordan and Jake have been getting along so well at the races, we've been trying to make arrangements for a sleep over. This week, we finally made it happen. Jake's Dad, Steve, dropped Jake off, and one of the first orders of business was a bike ride. Jordan and Jake wanted to do the Prescott Loop, and throw in the Afton Alps climb for good measure.

We headed out at about 5PM, and I knew daylight could be a challenge. The first climb was the backside of Afton Coulee. Jake was surprised how tough it was, but he made it just fine. Next was the climb between Coulee and Afton Alps, and then down into Afton Alps for the climb back out. This was a true test for Jake. I don't think he has ever climbed anything that steep before. He gutted it out, and was happy to conquer it. Jordan kidded, "One down, nine to go." Real funny Jordan.

We arrived at Prescott around 6:30. Snickers and Gatorade was on order. I could tell that Jake wasn't drinking enough, so I tried to encourage him to drink more. We finally got out of Prescott at about 6:50, with about 30 miles to go.

Jordan and Jake were having a great time, and chatting away. The only problem was they were doddling a bit, and we needed to go faster to beat sundown. I could also tell that Jake was bonking a little, and wasn't drinking hardly at all. After the super tough Kinnikinnic valley climb, Jake stated "This is one of the hardest training rides I've ever done."

One thing I noticed was that Jake tends to spin easy gears, even in the flats and downhills. I suggested he ride a couple gears larger in those cases, and his speed went up significantly. With Jordan, it's the opposite. I'm always asking him to ride an easier gear. Go figure.

We got home at about 8:45PM, just as it started to get dark out. Any later, and I was ready to call Carla to come get us. Carla was ready with burgers and potatoes. Life is good in Hudson, WI. Tomorrow, we intend to go check out the Birchwood RR course.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Firehouse 50 Recap

Tandem TT Results

Individual TT Results

4-person TT Results

2-person TT Results

Road Race Results

As always, the Firehouse 50 was a blast. After only 3 30-mile acclamation rides on the tandem with Treb during the last week, we were able to ride a 1:52:53. That's 29 seconds slower than Baker and I ran last year on the tandem. I guess Baker is faster than Treb?

Carla agreed to be our support vehicle again, an followed us throughout the race. We were almost dead last off the start line for the TT, so we knew we would probably be going through a lot of riders, mostly 2-person teams. We started conservatively, and rode within ourselves over the divide. There was a noticeable headwind, but we just ground it out. At the 15 mile mark, Treb managed to inhale, rather than eat his gel, and proceeded to hack and cough the rest of the race. He didn't eat any more gel, and hacked and spit the one he tried to eat all over the front of my truck behind us. Jeez.

The Tandem smoothed out the bumps in the woods, but we had to go through a lot of riders. People tend to ride towards the middle of the road in the woods, so getting by was sometimes difficult. We were never impeded, but we were forced to pass some riders on their right hand side, which is never a good idea.

As always, I was running my Garmin, so I kept a watch on the average speed. I've come to the conclusion this is not a good idea. You look down, and see you need to go faster, but you can't. You're already going as fast as you can. I'm doing my next TT without reading speed. Here are the average speeds I saw:

15 miles - 24.5mph
25 miles - 25.5mph
40 miles - 25.8mph
50 miles - 26.4mph

The tailwind was not as helpful as we thought it would be on the finish run down 63 into Grandview, but we flew as fast as we could. We were a little disappointed in not beating last years time, but very happy nonetheless.

Timmer won the individual TT for the 4th year in a row, just a touch slower than last year. Treb and I were happy to meet our goal of beating him (even if it takes 2 sets of legs to do so). Casper was 2 minutes back, with Shishilla back another 20 seconds. Well done.

Dave Thompson and Kevin O'Connor destroyed the old 2-person TT record in 1:49:28. Wow! The 4-man team from Brones Bike Shop rolled to a very respectable 1:51:50.

After the race, as we bumped into people we knew, most asked "Where's Jordan?" Man is he popular. Carla said next year she's wearing a shirt that says "Jordan isn't here. Think he is?"

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Just what the doctor ordered.

Jordan and I did intervals on Thursday night. He loved it. I don't do to much structured training like this, in fact, almost never. However, my recent performances are begging for improvement, and I'm desperate.

Afterwards, Jordan and I zipped up to the track to watch the Thursday night racing. I got a chance to chat with a bunch of guys like Super Rookie, and Smithers, who Jordan has been dying to meet. Skibby ended up riding 62 laps of the Madison by himself, after little guy crashed out. They tried to pull him with 10 to go, but he protested, and they let him finish. Way to go skibby! He was all smiles after the race. If you ever get a chance, you've got to come watch the racing. I wish I could get up there more often.

Headed up to the Firehouse 50 Friday. Treb and I are hoping to post a fast time on the Tandem.

Why do they call you Choo-Choo?

There is a common misconception on why some people call me "Choo-Choo". Click here to find out the real reason why.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Circus Bike TT

Photos below of the madcap antics after TNT. The results are very unofficial, but here's what I remember:

1. Jordan - 00:43
2. Marcus - 00:44
3. Homme - 00:50
4. Charlie - 00:52
5. Timmer - 00:54
6. Jimmer - 1:04

Charlie holds Darrin for his second try:

Charlie dials it in, Aero helmet and all:

Charlie fights through the pain:

Timmer in full flight:

Yours truly, still in the shammy: