Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Durand Race Report

Here's the Velo Bella results:
8. Barb Harick
28. Manda Lo
30. Debra Berg. (from IL)

For more results: http://www.cvccbike.com/node/76

Oh... but that's the boring stuff... we're gonna build up to the good stuff..

But... more of us showed up! Bellas Greib, and Jules.. where'd they go?... well... just read and see...

from Barb:
Big street cred to those who showed up for one heck of a windy and
hilly race: Manda, Jules, Jenn, and me AND Illinois Bella (oh dear, my
memory for names sucks)... Bummer Sheryl could not make it to keep her
boys healthy before her big trip to France.

I'll write more later after I eat something....and a much needed shower.

from Jules:
ok, I did my 1st road race. I was considerably nervous because I was worried about the unexpected. So I hung out toward the back. Once we stared, I found out quickly I really had nothing to worry about. I felt strong but started crappy, so I spent much of my time riding alone playing catchup. My plan was then to exert as much energy to catch up, ride some wheels, pass and catch up to the main pack. Well, I was just into my 2nd lap riding with a couple girls, ready to pass and go, when all of a sudden at 17 miles...flat! Shoot! So anyway I'm ready for more and can't wait until my next race. I've been flatting alot so I think my new sport is the dual-athalon (ride, get a flat and walk your bike back). haha

One of our own Bellas Jen, crashed. I felt really bad for her. The crosswind was wild!

I rode good today to make up for my short race yesterday.

from manda:
I'll ask one of the questions hotpinkevil asked super-rookie's audience.

When someone writes a long race report on their blog, do you actually read the whole thing? If so, what makes you read it? If not, do you just skip reading the post altogether, or pick out a few key things?

I didn't see much action. I was in the front at one point. I had conversation surfed my way to the first row at the start. made it through a couple of rolling hills, turned a corner. hit the headwinds and the steeper hills and got dropped. hung out with ex-bella P's sister and IL Bella Debra for the rest of the race. The headwinds, and short descents made it really hard to organize in the paceline... I've got to figure out what to do in that situation.... errr.. lots to learn.. The sex, drugs, and rock 'n roll version of the race is here.

And... here's the race report you ALL have been waiting for!

Slings and Tegaderm by Jenn Greiber

Durand Road Race…. nothing but beautiful Wisconsin countryside. Cows, fields, manure spreaders… everything that reminds me of home.

This was my second bike race of my life, and I must admit that I was quite excited (and nervous) to be there. It was a women’s open so all Cat 1-4 were lined up together. 39 women in the field, half of which I swear were Birchwood.

The women’s course was two laps and was a continuous land of rollers. After the second corner, I was dropped from the main pack (which included our Barb Harick) and continued on. Soon a small group formed with me, Paula (former Bella-turned-Flanders) and Tina (Big Ring Flyer, but I think I made her want to be a Bella…). We played together nicely, although it was clear to me how inexperienced at racing I am. Our goal was two ladies in front of us – Birchwood Jessie and GP Julia.

We were zipping along, but the gap never seems to close until we hit the stretch of open, flat, road. Tina could tear up the flats, so Paula and I let her lead with about three miles left in the race. BUT, here is where my disaster struck. I was to the right of Paula, and needed to be on the left for drafting purposes. When I went to come around behind her, I fell victim to the cardinal group riding sin: Overlapped wheels. However it happened, my front wheel caught her rear wheel and CRASH (Hm….. I wish I had a better noise description… “crash” isn’t quite the sound I’m thinking of)

Instantly I found myself flat on the ground, with Citrucel lying on top of me. Tina and Paula assured my consciousness, and then after some men riders, a milk truck, and a cluster of Birchwood ladies zipped by, I was loaded into a pick-up truck, owned and operated by a seemingly harmless man, named Dane. Who I believe had all of his teeth… ;)

At any rate, I was dropped off at the finish, surrounded by caring friends, ice, and whatever first aid supplies could be wrangled up. It was pretty clear I was going to have to see a doc, though.

So, all’s well. Paula, Manda and I take off. We gossip the ride home about the attractive men, the course, where I want to be ER-ed, Manda’s “forceful” vomiting, etc. My endorphins gave me a nearly pain free existence through the exam, diagnosis, etc, until about 8:00pm, when my body started to acknowledge the discomfort of a broken collarbone.

However, I cannot end the story there. I must share with you a magical thing that Bruce and Barb spoiled me with on Sunday. The friendly, considerate Haricks stopped by my home with a package of tegaderm (aka 3M’s Nexcare Absolute Waterproof Premium Adhesive Pads). This stuff is the coolest ever. Barb plastered my bloody knees and gashed elbow, and I later covered the oozy oozy mess on my cheek bone. I can’t wait to pay it forward and “tag” the next crash victim.

So, I’ll be seeing you on the bike in about four weeks. With a new helmet. In the meanwhile, I’ll just sit in my window with my arm in a sling and scowl a jealous scowl as cyclists cruise by.

Labels: , ,

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Saturday Action

Some of us who did not race in Durand went on the NOW ride today. I had committed to it just prior to noticing the change in start time. 8:00 is a cruel time to start a ride on a weekend. But okay, I guess I'm just not a morning exerciser. In any case, I was glad once I got rolling. I left my house thinking "wow, it's warm out." and hit the road and thought "wow, it's sort of windy." But the ride commenced before the wind got really bad. There were eight people, I think (somehow my math ability goes out the window when I'm doing physical activity.) Marjie, Brooke, and me representin' the "Vellas" as Bob calls us. There was one other woman from Bike Club, whose name I forget, but she and Brooke had twin bikes. The rest of the riders were guys from Bike Club, who were all very talkative and friendly.

We rode up Summit toward the capitol and north to Little Canada and around some lakes that I don't remember or can't pronounce. It was a somewhat hilly ride (I know this because we passed a convenience store called "Hilltop Store" or something like that.) The highlight was that I didn't get dropped on the hills-- for the first time ever!

We came back through Roseville and took a detour through Central Park, which is a cute little park with a lake and mini waterfall, and headed back past Como Lake and then portaged over some railroad tracks before heading back on Fairview, which is neither fair, nor has a view.

On the way home I got chatted up by a Grand Perfomance rider who told me about his 55 mile ride where all the guys were attacking each other on the hills. Made me really appreciate the NOW Bike Club guys, who could probably have lapped me on today's ride, but were conscious of keeping a reasonable pace and just having a good time.

The good thing about starting a ride at 8 a.m.? I was back home at 10:30, just in time to have my second breakfast :)

Does that mean I'm happy that all the Saturday rides will start at 8 a.m.? As Manda would say, "HELLS NO!" But I guess I'll have to just suck it up if I want to get stronger.

Thanks for the fun ride, everyone!


P.S. Go read Manda's blog if you haven't already, for details on the exciting Durand race (and more exciting post race!)


Thursday, April 19, 2007

Spring Fever... Durand this weekend

Oh man. It's GORGEOUS out. I work at the U of MN, and I'm sorta hoping that my building has a bomb threat so I can get out of here. That's just wrong though. But... man, it's GORGEOUS. Last time I was out, there was a bit of a stiff headwind, which made riding not quite as fun, but the sheer sunshine-y warmness made up for that.

That's one of my goals this season... ride even if it's windy out. Overcome hatred of headwind-- pretty much suck it up and DEAL.

Another goal is to be a slightly more sociable person. Part of that is being better at pointing out crap in the roads. -- But there is a weird sort of etiquette and balance to that. Some groups point out -everything-... stuff that I sorta classify as minutiae-- horizontal seams in the road... a dusting of sand... the white line. My pointing to stuff is more minimalist.. Holes that will eat your wheel, big ass chunks of glass, steel cheese graters on the road... You know the big stuff. So, I promise I'll try to remember to point out manhole covers and medium sized holes.

Another goal is to master the wave. I have to admit, I'm a klutz who's not exactly in great shape. Thusly, I'm MUCH better at the head nod. Unfortunately, the head nod is a much more subtle greeting than the wave... so those who are counting waves, taking names, and making a list may miss the head nod. So... list makers.. keep an eye peeled.

In exchange, I will try to wave to other people I see, but I reserve the right to use the head nod as a greeting, if I'm at the intense point of my workout, trying to get home before I bonk, or climbing a big ass hill.

Labels: ,

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Training clinic 1

Mad props to Bruce for pulling this all together. And yay! for getting a ton of people together on a school night to come out and play. Comment if I'm missing anyone... Brooke, Molly, Kate, Barb, me, hotpinkevil, eclectchick, rocker, Sara(n), Leslie(?), and more came out to practice pacelining (or learn how to paceline), bump tires and bump shoulders... 'tis great fun. Grieber made a cameo appearance after the clinic ended. Bummer, girl. Missed ya.

Next one next Tuesday. Same bat time. Same bat place! Bring your homework:
1. How big are the rings on your crank?
2. How many gears are in the back? How many teeth are in the small one? How many teeth are in the big one?

All of yous who had your kit, you looked hot out there! I sorta had mine. The blue Patagonia jacket. I LOVE the 2006 full zip jersey when it is 80+ out... but it's still a lil' chilly for it to be my outer layer. (and it WREAKED anyway). And unfortunately, my 2005 is painfully tight right now. I guess that means more time on the bike is needed. GRR. Hopefully pictures might happen next time. I have a digital camera that used to be cool in 2001 to donate to the cause.

Labels: , ,

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Saturday NOW Ride

I survived the Saturday morning NOW ride, despite only having logged 99 outdoor miles this season. Heck, I increased my total milage by 50 percent! My computer says I rode 42 miles today, which includes the 6 mile round trip to the bike shop.

Temp when I left my house: 33 degrees

Barb and Marjie and I were the only "girls" on the ride. There were also about 6 guys, who seemed nice and rode at a reasonable pace that I could mostly keep up with. We went down Shepard road, which is always longer than I think, and into Maplewood by Hwy. 61, where we hit a nasty hill. I knew it was going to hurt when Barb said to me before we turned the corner, "Kate, you should probably get into your easiest gear." I did, but it didn't matter. I was seriously dropped on a really steep grade followed by a long gradual uphill. But thanks to Barb, who turned around to sweep me up, I didn't lose the pack entirely.

We split into two groups after the hill: those who wanted a shorter ride and those who wanted to keep going. Marjie and me and a guy named Jim turned around. My legs felt like burning, so the ride back wasn't as pleasant as the ride out. We rode into the wind, but Marjie was kind enough to let me hang on her wheel all the way back.

When we got back to the store, we were greeted by the guys from the other half of the group, who beat us back! Hey, ours was supposed to be the shorter ride!

Thanks to Barb and Marjie for having the patience to deal with my slow climbs. I look forward to getting back out there next time and maybe it won't hurt so much...

Can't wait for our Tuesday night training sessions!


Friday, April 13, 2007

Come out and play! it's spring?

Looks like we might actually get one this year... this means rides are happening.

Seriously. The Tuesday night rides from the Snelling NOW bikes have been happening. Go check them out. I've been wussing out for a variety of reasons - weather, icky migraines...

9am Saturday morning rides the Snelling NOW bikes are also happening. These 2 rides are open to anyone, not just team members... so come join us!

For team members only, we will be doing skillz clinics--4 sessions:
  • April 17th

  • April 24th

  • May 1

  • May 8th.

These start at 6pm from the NOW bikes on Snelling. These are skills clinics, so it is important to go to all of them.

And OPUS starts soon.... MCF would know all about it. Want a preview of what racing at OPUS looks like? Bella Maria will be racing with the UMN, at a collegiate crit this Sunday Monday. Details here.

Also come join the Bellas at the IronMan on April 29th. Sounds like we're gonna be doing the 65 mile loop. All are welcome... but details TBA.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

or not social-able

there's something about this cold that's makes leaving hard. The time it takes me to get ready is directly proportional to the number of layers I have to put it. However, the time it takes does not grow like a steady slope... it's more like an exponential curve. ie. it takes significantly longer to leave when I have to wear long underwear, winter jacket and fleece hat, than when I only have to wear pants and a shirt.

I did think about moving to warmer climates again, but... it's kinda cold all over now. I came home from the clinic and noticed the US Open Cycling Championships in Richmond, VA was on NBC. Apparently it was 18 degrees at the start of the race. I grew up in Richmond... it rarely hits 18 degrees in the winter. ergh. Apparently nowhere is safe from this crappy spring cold snap.

But... all the info from various racing clinics this spring made the race way more fun to watch....

soft core derbying

Today, MWCMR held their bike racing clinic. In my caffeine-less haze, got there 1.5 hours late, I saw Bellas Grieber and Kate.... anyone else? After a couple hours of classroom time (complete with coffee and tasty scones!), we broke off into 3 groups and worked on some skillz. We worked on our pacelines over to the park, where we worked riding shoulder to shoulder, shoulder to hip, and rubbing tireds... then... we capped it off with a softcore derby (thanks, buzzard!).

What makes for a softcore derby? Well, there was no blood spilled. Hrm... I don't know.. but... the derby involved a lot of women, on some very sexy bikes, riding around in a circle trying to knock each other out of circle or to the ground, or just make someone put their foot down.

Buzzard knocked me in the hip pretty good. GW Sara caused mayhem by randomly track standing in the middle of the circle. The sewer grate caught one rider's wheel and took 'em out.. and I finally got out of there... because the circle got too damned small, I got too squirrely, and put my foot down to make s sharp turn... DOH!

Thanks to MWCMR for holding the clinic... and it rawked seeing so many people out despite the weather...

That's about it... Gotta go be social-able now. And hit up the grocery store for my annual Cadbury creme egg.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

you know you've always wanted to....

You're an anime schoolgirl on a bike, and you ram an anime boy.... just to see how far he flies....



Altoona Race Report

by Barb

Saturday Road Race:

I love the Midwest. Where else can you get a post race meal, on the road, with all food groups for $4.99? At your local Des Moines Hy-Vee grocery store! Chicken and biscut casserole with green beans, broccoli and a whole wheat roll. It was great. Better than a cheese and mayonaise sandwhich. :burp:

Anyway...my first race of the season I am happy to say I am in better form than I was last year this time.:D I finished mid-pack and I am happy with it as the group I was in had some strong women form MN (Birchwood), Iowa, and Lincoln, about 20+ women total. The course was great-rolling hills, scenic farm lands with GREEN stuff and good old midwestern wind and rain. The race started out calm and reasonable. Then a super attack by the Birchwood Bettys got things going much faster than they were. :shock: I stayed on and our group now was half the field that started. We rode somewhere between moderate and harder than I really wanted to. But that's good for me. Up and down the hills we went. A good down pour of rain washed all grit off our water bottles. The last time up one of the beloved rollers I was not able to survive the attack, was dropped and rode it in hard with Andrea (socks) V. I tried to contest the sprint, but my legs were having none of it. Over all I really enjoyed the race--it was challenging, the women in the race rode well, I got to see friends from seasons past, and stayed with the group.

Tomorrow, the crit, and then back home to start spring break!!


PS, Iwas not listed in the results, but I finished 11th.

Sunday crit:

What can I say about the crit...the temps dropped during the night, the wind picked up and the course was not what I had hoped. I was not able to get a warm up (too cold, didn't know my way around, too whiney, etc). The course was a large circle, down and up, down and up. No fast corners, not speed, just up a long brutal, to me, hill and then down a long hill with cold wind in my face. About half the women from yesterday showed up. We started down the hill and that went OK. But up the hill I had nuthin', zero, zip, no legs and no will. So I came off, coaxed my self to ride a few more laps but still all goose eggs. So I did what I hate to do, I dropped out. Blah! I only get to do that once a year, so now I have to finish all the other races this year. :?

I watched the rest of the race huddled in my car shivering while a small group of very strong women duked it out. It was a good race to watch. Our MN women did well. Not a whole lot else to say, as it was cold, windy, grey. I thought about you'all riding the hill ride.

Can't wait for Opus.

MWCMR clinic this Saturday!

Couldn't get enough road skills at the previous VeloBella clinic?

MWCMR is holding their women's only racing clinic this Saturday. 9am-1pm. Midtown YWCA. $10. Bring your bike, bike helmet, and clothing appropriate riding gear.

This clinic is open to any woman interested in bike racing... Most the local teams will be represented. It's a great place to work on your skills and meet other women interested in racing.

Why? MWCMR sponsors a series of races that have a separate Cat 4 (beginner racer) Women's field. There are a total of 7 races in this series with your best 5 races counting towards your standing in the series. There's even a series leader jersey at stake.

Come on out!

Labels: ,