We’ve all heard the blog stories before. when posting falls off. The short story is I don’t get paid for this. I started a new job working for Electra Bicycles on March 1st and have been digging it. It is keeping me busy selling bikes that aren’t race bikes, like the beauty below. Mine is sitting in a box taunting me to build her.
I have been riding but do you really want to read about my daily rides? I didn’t think so. One thing that has been of interest to me is riding the big wheel bike. You may recall that I finally broke down, drank the Kool Aid, and at the end of last season got myself a Niner Air 9.
Frankly I hadn’t been enamored by the bike. I have never had problems riding technical and the bike seemed to turn weird. There was no denying that it was fast on wide open stuff, but twisty trails seemed awkward. With the 26’er it seemed I could turn the bike from the saddle with my hip’s but the Niner seemed like I had to muscle it around from the bars. Kinda a problem when you aren’t muscly.
That all changed one day riding the local trail at Nockamixon. I was going for my usual lolly-gagging ride and met Chris and Grace in the parking lot. BBB and I headed out with Chris and Grace. Grace is a ripping fast elite racer and well none of the rest of us were. She was content sitting behind us getting a “recovery ride” Until she wasn’t.
She asked if she could lead a section. We all said that would be fine and then she proceeded to tear our legs off and whoop us with them. It was at that moment chasing Grace down the trail that it started to click. the bike flowed easier, and I stopped over thinking things. I just chased. Since then it has flowed a lot better.
That said I still want another 26’er.
I carried this new found flow on the Niner into Leesburg Bakers Dozen.
I went to avenge my previous two 11th place finishes. I am happy to say that I was able to shake that 11th place finish. Unfortunately it was by getting 15th place.
The course was fast and dry. I held myself back to ensure that I would actually finish. Second or third lap in I pulled a sub 40 minute lap on an 8.5 mile course. I knew that if I kept that up I would have problems. In total I finished 14 laps. Ironically if I would have squeaked one more out I would have finished…… 11th.
The dude who won the solo did 21 laps. He is a beast.
The C3 teams crushed it. Fat Marc, T-Rav, and Photog Dennis snagged a 1st, as well as Sweet Johnny and Young, and Harlow, Jen, and Bad Kat. There were several top 3 placings as well.
It was good to hang with the C3 crew. There was laughing, camaraderie, and shenanigans aplenty. The LRHG was a great Team Soigneur. She was grilling and helping a bunch of people out. There is a soft spot in my black heart for that red-head.
Rather than give a blow by blow description of the race I figured I would break it down as the tale of the socks. Mostly because I am out of words and I like socks.
I started the day in my All Hail socks to pay homage to Stevil. Plus they are comfy. Since it was dry and dusty you get before and after photos.
|After. It got dustier.|
The last pair
|No After shot but this sums up the day|
Possibly if I wouldn’t have changed socks so often I might have secured my spot one spot outside the top 10 firmly at 11th.
This is what I look like after 119 off road miles. Hard to tell who looks crankier Josh or me.
|Stolen from Fatmarc.com|
Yes it was Dusty.
So after doing this and hardly being able to walk afterward I decided to sign up for The 12 hours of Granogue. I suggest you do the same. If you are completely insane you can even sign up for the Iron Monkey. I’m gonna pass on that one.
****After seeing the final postings from Plum Grove Cyclery I was officially in 15th place, I have been informed that on Bike reg I am actually 16th place. Oh Well. It’s not 11th****
you were awesome at bakers.
great write up.
I'm totally off the 26er. Have been since 01 or 02….
good on you
You stopped over-thinking things … not a problem I've ever had to overcome myself, but definitely a good idea when it comes to riding bikes! And especially on THAT bike — it's built for speed (just look at it's geometry – short stays and a low sleek front end.) Let it do what it do.
Congrats on the race, too! Pulling over a hundred miles is great any day! (I've done it a bunch of times, and I know how much 100 miles off road hurts!)
But … ehh … unicorn socks? That takes confidence. Well done, sir! See you at Granogue!
Thanks Marc. Working hard to get my back together for grange. I have been having quite a few discussions about 26 vs 29 as of late. If I can find time I'm going to write it down and try to get a discussion started.
Marty. Unicorns make the world go round plain and simple. Them and Bacon. Oh and Beer.