Sunday, September 27, 2009


It's hot again in Houston, that made the ride this morning tough. I got out for four hours with Lauren joining me for the last hour or so. It was a pretty good ride, traffic wasn't bad, didn't have to stop much, and it wore me out. There's a race next weekend in Bryan, TX and hopefully I can pull out a win.

Since I haven't written in a while, a brief recap of last week:

Last week was the restart of Yetti cross which is good, new route looks tough, can't wait to get out there and race again.

Went to Wisconsin last weekend for a good friend's wedding and got to see some of the family.

Lauren took the GRE, that test you have to take to get into grad school, tough test.

Seu is getting a little better at rolling over.

Lawnmower broke.

Went to training for work.

Went to the Astros game on Friday with some sweet fireworks afterwards.

Figured out I'm doing the 24 hours of Rocky Hill as a duo team, should be interesting.

Prediction of this week:
Will get my new mountain biking shoes!!!! I'm excited!!!!

Do Yetti cross sometime around Wednesday.

Race at Bryan on Sunday.

Ride horses sometime.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Last weekend was the Huntsville Classic. I was coming of a pretty hard week of training so I wasn't sure how the race would go. The pre ride was pretty good, wet, but good. There was a lot of rain and I wasn't sure how the riding would be, remembering back to Camp Eagle, but the course was good and not muddy.

I was feeling pretty good at the start of the race and they started us with the collegiate B's so there was quite a few people at the start. My goal was to not blow up on the first lap but still ride fast. I know, smart plan, right. Since the start was so fast and the course was so ... non ... technical I figured I would blow up chasing roadies. The first lap went pretty well as I led most of it pulling away in the technical sections and having the other kid catch up in the flats. Around the start/finish line the other kid started pulling away and some other kid passed me. I didn't know how I was feeling but apparently I was fading. I started getting a little tired and then it was more tired and then I was struggling to keep going. After a little recovery I kicked it in again to hold of the other Cat 2's at least. Just as the rain started to come I passed some Cat 2's from another class that had passed me earlier but my effort was a little too late and I ended up third about two and a half minutes out of first. Not too bad after a hard week and I got a super-duper trophy.

At the start of Lauren's race, where she ended up fifth, I ended up standing on a dang fire any mound and the little suckers got me about 8 - 9 times before I killed them all. Later that week Brandon's ankle would go on to get all swollen due to those dang fire ants but it is getting better now.

On a side note the Yetti Cross races are on hold as the Harris County Flood Control decided they don't want us racing down there. Lame but true.

Seu is learning to roll over.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


The second week of Yetti Cross was ......... ugh ............... yeah. We got a bunch of rain all day long before the race so the course was a little soggy. I wasn't sure how I would feel but Alan told me to get the hole shot so that's what I did. Then I blew up pretty bad. I didn't feel so good from about minute 10 until minute 45 and then for about an hour after the race. The mud served to really clog up the derailleurs and the tire a little. Tough pedalling. Even though I lost a lot of energy and didn't feel too well I ended up around 10th out of about 25.

Not too long after the start, notice face not grimacing

Any tips?
About to hit the hill, face anguished, not looking forward to the hill, wanting to be done with the race

The Hill

Post race, not feeling it
Huntsville race this weekend, hope it's better than tonight! I also should maybe get a cross bike.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Camp Eagle Classic 2009

was last weekend in Rocksprings, TX. It was an interesting Labor Day weekend event. The weekend started with Lauren, Westley (a young beginner rider), and I took off at 9 on Saturday morning thinking it would be good to get there early afternoon to pre-ride. Well, after a stop at Buc-ee's and about four more hours of driving, we rolled into Camp Eagle with about an eighth of a tank of gas, interesting.

We pulled up to the First-Time Racers clinic to say hi to the Johnson's just as the rain started. We thought it might end quickly but we were wrong. Alan jinxed us as well by keeping on saying, "Oh I think it's letting up" or, "It's getting lighter over there". So it rained for a while and we didn't end up pre-riding at all.

After a good pasta dinner, a good game of scrabble (somehow I beat Kyle), and an lovely night of sleep on a nice rubber coated mattress it was race time.

Westley started early, at 8:30, and the Cat 1's and 2's starting at 10:30. Westley started strong and ended up winning his race. Congrats!!

My race was interesting, there was a little 13 year-old who is apparently really fast. The kid was with us, or should I say, we were with him for the first, oh, ten minutes of the race and then he was gone. Crazy fast. I was in second with Ryan and we were holding a pretty good pace. The first loop was just nasty as the rain had made everything muddy and the rocks were all super slippery. I almost took a couple people out as I slid while passing them, they weren't too happy.

Ryan started to ride away from me and pretty soon I couldn't see him anymore, I was a little worried but trying to not blow myself up trying to catch him. I eventually caught back up to him on a long, steady, nastily-slippery hill climb. Going across a side-hill Ryan crashed and I passed him back for second. Seeing that, I rode a little more cautious and figured Ryan might catch up to me again. The trail was getting considerably better near the end of the race and my second trip down the old river bed was much better and faster. I ended up getting second behind the kid by about four minutes for second. I felt good and the race was good, now I have to take out that little kid since he got the prize that I really wanted. Here are some pictures snapped by Lauren:

Somewhere during the race

Finish! Rough race, in the bumpy sort of rough!

Podium, notice tiny kid on top.

By the way, the eighth of a tank of gas was barely enough to get us back to the only gas station out in that area of the world approximately 40 miles away. I love my car!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Racing Report

Last weekend was a race at Stephen F. Austin state park and was the first race since I've been here from Wisconsin. I wasn't sure how the course was so I went out on Saturday to pre-ride and found out the course was pretty easy.

Sunday came around and Kathy and I had talked Lauren into racing. Early start but we made it with a little time to warm up. The start went out around a paved loop and then into the singletrack. I kept with the middle of the pack around the loop and then made a move to get into the front of the group right before the singletrack which was a good move since people behind me crashed and slowed everyone down. I was in the top five about two miles in and hanging on pretty easily. About a third of the way through the first lap (5 mile laps) I decided to go and was in the lead for the rest of the lap. At about the same point on the next lap two guys that were behind me just took off and I never saw them again. Stupid Cat 1 sandbaggers!!! I kept on though but I was hurtin' a little, some other Cat 2's had caught up so I was in about third and then fifth and then like 10th. I started recovering a little and then started passing some of the guys that had passed me and by race end I placed seventh. Not too bad, would have liked to place higher but I felt ok.

Tuesday I met up with a kid and rode Memorial Park. Forgetting the Yetti cross race on Wednesday I decided to push it and do intervals. It was a good workout and I got to scare some roadies and make them mad when I passed them "really close" according to them. Ha ha, there wasn't even contact.

Last night was the first Yetti cross race of the season. Running late, I spaced any money that would actually enter me into the race so I ended up just riding but at race effort. It was a hard effort after pushing it hard the night before but I didn't let up. 45 minutes is a long time to go hard, too. I started with the C's since I wasn't officially in the race and even though I wasn't contesting anyone I did end up lapping about a third to half of the C field. The barriers were certainly interesting, should probably do some work in that area, but it was still a sweet race. I definitely need to look into getting a 'cross bike (Lauren rolls eyes now) so if you have any connections or know someone selling a 54 cm let me know.