Monday, October 27, 2008


Equates to:
A) The average value a racer's bike exceeds the value of his car.
B) The cost of Smithers ambulance ride on Sunday.
C) The amount MN racers would be willing to donate to get Greg McCrea to start wearing bibshorts?
D) The amount the Cullen's have spent on Race Entry Fees in 2008.

Answer: D

138 races
Jimmer: $1542.55
Jordan: $935.12
Total: $2477.67

And there are still 10 more races.

If anyone should be bitching about race fees, it should be us. And we aren't complaining. $20 is a bargain, $25 is the norm, $30 seems excessive, but isn't, given the right circumstances.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Jordan is upgrading to the B race

Two wins, a second, and two thirds in the C race this cross season for Jordan, and he is ready to move up full time to the B race.

Jordan had a tough race today. A crash on the first lap heavily bent in his left shift lever, causing him problems with controlling the bike. He only rides the hoods, partly due to his freshly healed wrist, and also because his wrists hit his bars when he's in the drops.

After losing a ton of spots due to his crash, he regained his composure, and moved back up through the field. He closed to within about 15 seconds of eventual winner Caleb Goltz, but then he ran out of steam, and finished an impressive second.

Kudos to Synergy for putting on a great race, with by far the best shwag this cross season.

Doug Swanson won convincingly today. Jordan hopes to reach his level someday.

Green Acres Cyclocross Race Results

Cat 4/Juniors
M45+/Women 1/2/3

Cat 3

Cat 1/2, M35+

Smithers Down

Smithers kindly offered up the La Speciale Category for the back end of the Green Acres M35+ 1/2/3 Race. The friendly gesture drew a few into the field who might otherwise passed, especially given the cold, windy, and muddy conditions.

Sadly, on the 4th lap, Smithers crashed hard about 50ft shy of the double barriers at the bottom of a fast hill. He was pulling away from me at the time, so I wasn't in position to witness how it happened. Based on his position relative to his bike, it looks like he went somehow over the bars, or slid out very hard.

I rolled up to him, and he was laying in the fetal position, and unresponsive. I stopped, and checked his condition. His eyes were open, but glazed over. He didn't respond to any of my questions. After about 30 seconds, he rolled onto his back and muttered something like "What the?". After a minute or two, he was able to sit up by himself, just as more help arrived. I decided I had done what I could, and rejoined the race.

Both Ped and Scotty Rob stopped racing to tend to Smithers, and help go with him to the hospital. What great friends.

At the time of his crash, Smithers was leading the La Speciale category. Get well soon bud.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Jordan Continues His Winning Ways

Jordan had another great race at the Afton Alps Cyclocross Race. He won the C race with 63 racers, including even tougher competition than last week in Hudson. The field included Junior MTB phenom Jack Hinkens, who won the Wirth Classic C race. Also competing was John Gorrilla, who won the C race at Twine Ball.

The start of the C race resulted in a pile-up in the first turn when some of the lead riders went straight instead of turning. Jordan was lucky, and got through clean. No serious injuries, but sadly a couple racers were not able to rejoin the race.

Jordan gained separation with Adam Koble, who had a very successful first road season. Jordan got a gap, and looked to win easily, but Adam closed it down coming into the final barrier. Jordan pushed hard, and just held off the impressive sprint of Koble. Congrats Jordo.

Click here for race photos.

63 Starters in the C race. This shot was right before the pile up at the start.

Jordan pushing it in the turn

Hitting the tough run-up.

Painman leads the first lap of the Cat 3 race.

Suffering over the barrier, just one short lap later.

Sone went off course too, but recovered nicely for the win.
She had ice cream with us a Selma's post race.

Pmax leads the A race.

Pat turned 21 yesterday. He paid a heavy price for partying hard.
He had trouble early, but came on strong late in the race.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Sunday, January 25th, 2009, 5:00-7:30PM, Save the Date

The annual MCF Awards banquet will be held at Park Tavern in St. Louis Park on the evening of Sunday, January 25th, 2009 from 5:00-7:30. It will be a fun and casual evening, including an Italian buffet dinner, and free bowling (we will occupy the entire 20 lane bowling center).

Awards for the top 3 in each ROY category, top 3 in each CRY category, top 3 in MWCMR, as well as TROY will be formally presented during the party.

More details will follow in the coming weeks.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Most Beautiful Ride of the Year

Was Saturday, after watching Maren run in Menomonie. I rode home on the quiet back roads through Spring Valley, WI. Sun shining, with the colors still near peak. Several canopied roads with falling leaves. It just doesn't get much better. My only regret was no pictures.

Someone Has to Be Last

A rare opinion piece.

Cross in Minnesota is growing, but the "A" race is not.

The "A" race at Minnesota cross races this season have been on par or smaller compared to 2007. This is mostly due to category changes. Last year, some Cat 3's were towing the line in the "A" races, where their only option is the "B" race this year.

The main reason I am noticing this is because last season, I was finishing in front of more people, where this year I am always fighting for DFL. I don't think I have lost my step, just competing against a smaller and tougher field than last year.

Inevitably, It's brought me to consider downgrading to a Cat 3. However, won't this just shrink the A race further. Someone has to be last. I'm going to keep taking my lumps, and stick with the A race. Any Cat 3's want to take the plunge into the 1/2's like Thorlson, Haugh, and Helbrecht have this season?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Jordan First Overall Cyclocross Win

Jordan wins the C Race

1st and 2nd Place, after the final set of barriers on the last lap.

Jordan won the C Race at Sunday's Big Ring Flyers Cyclocross Race in Hudson, WI. He had managed two 3rd place finishes in C races this fall, and was hunting for the win.

He didn't get his normal good start, but by the end of the first lap, he was with the lead group of 5. Eventually, Jordan took the lead and pushed the pace. Only Synergy's Caleb Goltz was able to match his pace. On the final laps, Jordan kept pressing, opened a gap on Goltz, resulting in his first C race win.

Click below for photos from the C race and 1st B race.
Big Ring Flyers Hudson CX

Maren Sets Personal Best 4K Time

Maren set a personal best 4K time of 18:31, finishing 25th out of 88 at the Big Rivers Conference JV Girls Championships. Both Carla and I were so proud and relieved she had such a great final performance.

She had no episodes during the race, just a lot of nervous energy prior to the start. Carla and I ran all over the course to make sure we would be there if she fainted again. In doing so, I finally got some great photos of her running.

This was her last cross country race of 2008, although she intends to keep practicing with the Varsity girls. Her cardiac holter monitor did not show any cardiac anomalies, so now she is wearing an cardiac event recorder for 30 days. They've already ruled out some of the more dangerous problems like Long QT syndrome and Hypertrophic Cardiomyopothy.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Look Out, Maren is Driving now

You get your permit in WI at 15 and a half. 6 more months till she can drive solo. WI has another law that prohibits drivers under 18 from having more than 1 other person under 18 in the car with them.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Maren's Holter Experience

Maren wore a holter monitor for the past 24 hours. It captures a 24 hour ECG stream from 5 surface leads on your chest.

The good news is she had an fainting episode during cross country practice, which got recorded. Hopefully the data will provide some answers.

One of the leads is exposed up by her neck. She didn't like people asking what it was. Today she's wearing a scarf.

She's a bit nervous about possibly needing a device like an implantable pacemaker or defibrillator. I'm doing my best to calm her fears, and assure her that it would allow her to continue running, and not restrict her lifestyle.

Carla asked me what if she needs a device, and the doctor doesn't want to put in a Medtronic device. Simple answer, get a different doctor.

Jordan's Final Cross Country Meet for 2008

Still sporting the ankle brace. It hold his ankle at a 90 deg angle.

(L-R) 1st through 10th

Hudson Boys Win the Team Title

Hudson Middle School swept the podium again, this time in New Richmond. Same finish order as last time. Ryan 1st, Alex 2nd, then Jordan 3rd. Hudson boys also won the team competition with the lowest score of 25.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Score: 46 to 19

2008 Race Wins:
Jordan = 46 wins (including 14 since breaking his wrist at the end of July)
Jimmer = 19 wins

Barring the entire A race field crashing out leaving me solo, my win count will stop at 19 for 2008.

Another Setback for Maren

Maren passed out again at her cross-country race this past Saturday. It was worse this time, in that she was out for long enough where people came to her aid to revive her. Very scary.

Carla was waiting for her at the finish line, but Maren never came. A few nervous moments later, she arrived via a golf cart, pale as a ghost. If Carla wasn't there, they would have put her in an Ambulance.

Back to square one. She was very well hydrated, and had plenty to eat, so it doesn't appear to be nutritional. The EKG didn't show any abnormalities, so the next step is a stress test.

She's a trooper, and is not ready to give up on running.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Twine Ball and Wirth Classic CX recaps

Jordan in the Woods at Twine Ball

Fast over the barriers at Twine Ball

Attacking the Hill at Twine Ball

Beautiful Fall Colors at Wirth

Light attendance at Twine Ball, even lighter than last year. People missed riding a fast, fun course on a beautiful fall day. Props to Zim and his crew for a more forgiving course than last year.

To contrast, HUGE fields at the Wirth Classic. 100+ in the C race. Less, but not much less in the B race. Probably around 30 in the A race.

I got lapped 2 times by Dewey and Patty Cakes in both races. I don't feel like I'm going that slow, until the fast guys go blowing by me. I always try to move aside (critical on this weekends single track courses), but they come up so dang fast.

Actually, I think just about the whole field lapped me both days. Not planning on downgrading to a Cat 3. I'll just wait 3 more years until I can race Masters 45+ and do the B race.

Jordan has started paying his entry fees. This weekend, he won $30 at Twine Ball for finishing 3rd overall in the C race, and then won a nice pair of Tifosi sunglasses for winning the younger juniors at the Wirth Classic.

Jordan has now won a total of 3 pairs of Tifosi sunglasses. The whole family now wears them, except Jordan of course. He wears Oakley Radars, which he got for his 13th birthday.

Wirth Classic CX Photos

Non-professional photos, primarily of the B race. Feel free to download them for free. Click here for photos.

Sorry, didn't stick around for photos of the results.

Twine Ball Cyclocross Results

Click for photos of Twine Ball CX Results.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Cycling Stuff Giveaway

That's right. Free stuff! Preferential treatment afforded to LSC teammates and close friends. Email me: j dot cullen at sbcglobal dot net, or find me at one of this weekend's cross races.

L/XL Giro Helmet - Free!

M Bell Helmet - Free!

Shimano MTB Shoes - Womens Size 39 - Free!

Shimano Road Shoes - Womens Size 38 - Free!

Exustar MTB Shoes - Size 38 - Free!

AXO Road Shoes - Size 36 - Free!

Lake MTB Shoes - Size 36 - Free!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Championship Jerseys

All Jordan's hard work paid off this summer in the form of 5 2008 championship jerseys. The 4 on the left are his Wisconsin Cycling Association Junior Male State Championship Jerseys (Age 13-14 TT, Road, and Crit; Age 15-16 Crit). The 1 on the right is the WISPORT White Jersey for Best Young Rider under 19. Congratulations Jordan on your success. I've got to give props to both WCA and Wisport for providing these excellent jerseys.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Hudson Cyclocross - A Modern Classic

Jordan finished 8th overall out of 43 C racers (1st younger junior). I used my tail gunning technique to perfection in the A race. I finished close to last, including getting lapped by a flying Bjorn Selander, not once, but twice.

Jordan Storming the Beach

See if you can guess when I was running the beach.
Muddy and Happy

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Corcoran CX Results - not DFL

I sucked at Corcoran, but not as bad as the results show. I finished 4th from last (26th), right behind Spencer, not DFL as the results show. I'm sure I'll be DFL at some point this cross season, just not today.

A Race:

B Race (It says C, but trust me, it's B):

C Race:

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Hey Wah, Wanna Race?

You've got 2 more cylinders than I do, but I've got 280HP to your 270HP.

Apparently cyclists like VW wagons?

Maren Stays Upright at Chi Hi

Maren had no issues at the Chippewa Falls Cross Country Invite at beautiful Lake Wissota state park. Normally, the girls run 4K, but they run 5K at this meet. It was a challenging course over rolling terrain through the woods. Maren finished in a respectable 24:16. Carla was nervous until she saw Maren headed for the finish. I don't know who was more relieved there were no issues, Carla or Maren? I knew she could do it. I was simply proud after her race.

Hudson Podium Sweep

The top 3 finishers at the Ellsworth Middle School Cross Country Meet
L-R: Alex (2nd), Jordan (3rd), Ryan (1st)

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Jordan's first cross country meet - 3rd place

Jordan was sidelined again this fall from cross country running with Achilles tendinitis. He's in the process of getting orthodics, and had to stop running until he gets them next week. That's why you see him wearing an brace on his left ankle (along with the brace on his left wrist).

The coach asked if he'd be willing to run in the meets, even if he can't come to practice, and he said OK. His first meet was Tuesday, where he finished 3rd overall of around 150 middle school kids (Jordan is a 7th grader). Hudson middle school ended up taking 1st, 2nd, and 3rd overall for the boys. Go Raiders!