Thursday, December 30, 2010

best crash...

Super Bowl Sunday, 2-7-10. This was actually my 2nd crash of the day, first was an easy slide to a stop in the snow & ice a couple hours earlier. The one pictured below, picture credit to c-bread, was the real deal. You can see my path as I caught an icy rut & was slam-dunked to the deck, left wrist first. I'm bellowing in agony as this shot was taken. It took months before my wrist was right again.
You might argue that my DK carnage should be the crash of the year, but that was just blood & missing skin. The Super Bowl Sunday pile drive wins easily on the pain & discomfort scale.

Later,

TK

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

more...

haven't gotten tired of it yet...

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Thursday, December 16, 2010

and I leave you with this...

...the run. Maybe macaroni was bringing me luck...bad luck.

I really can't remember any particular spectator comments during "the run" but I do remember most of them being supportive. A CX crowd feeds on suffering.

Later,

TK

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Saturday, December 11, 2010

fizzle...

...many words could describe yesterday's season finale, but fizzle is about spot on. My 5th row start position & the anticipation of a 45 minute slug-fest in the slop had my mental state, I'll call it...unhealthy. I was in full on "lets get this shit over" mode.

I guess it's only fitting that I flatted a rear tubular half-way through the 6 lap event. So instead of riding my bike through the muck I was forced to run with my bike for about a 1/2 mile. I may have been ready for the season to be over, but that didn't mean I was going to go down with out at least trying. The jog to the pit seemed to take forever. Down a paved section, through a back and forth section in the muddy grass (which included a big muddy water hole), over the flyover, more muddy grass, up the stair feature, more muddy grass, up the finish straight with Richard Fries yelling over the PA that I was experiencing difficulty, through turn one, & finally the pit with Nate & Mod waiting with my pit bike which was way past due for new brake pads.

My reward for this effort...1 more lap & the official pulling me with all the other back-markers. I was on my way back through the field but my day was done, guilty by association...fizzle. 60th out of around 112, whatever.

Frankly, I wasn't really moving up that fast before the flat. What would have happened over the last 3 laps if I hadn't flatted...I guess we'll never know. I do know I'm leaving here with a chewed up knee, bruised ribs, & a sore hip:)

What now? Mod finishes up this morning in the massive 40-44 category & Nate this afternoon in the 35-39. Right after Nate's, actually Mr. Bonsall is in Nate's race riding one of my bikes, we head for Portland & then home early tomorrow!!!!


Signing off...

Later,

TK

TP is first on the schedule this morning, shooting it out with Tilford (and others) for the 50-54 championship.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

A beat down...

...had fun yesterday with the 40+ B Race, slopped & crashed my way to a 4th. Today's TT for tomorrow's staging went really well if you exclude the high speed icy decent crash. Pulled myself back together & limited the time-damage as best I could. Sore, a few more cuts but pissed more than anything. Probably cost myself "a row" for tomorrow. Whatever, season's over tomorrow & I'll give it all I got:)

Later,

TK

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Snow...

...and now rain. Rolled into Bend around 1:00ish yesterday & headed to the venue to check things out. A couple inches of snow is covering everything like last year but the big difference is it's 20-25 degrees warmer, temps are in the upper 30's to lower 40's. We ended up walking the course, a bit longer than last year's version but very familiar. Definitely not as icy though as last year, just going to be sloppy with the rain that's falling now.

Next stop was # pickup & then headed for the TT site. I didn't know when/if I was going to have a chance to pre-ride this venue so I wanted to check it out. Nate & I got bikes out & slid through a snowy lap. If you're unaware what I mean by TT course...we will be lining up for our championship race based on lap times at this alternate venue. If it goes well...the system worked:), if it doesn't...The problem I see is the conditions will be constantly changing, it's not a "level playing field", too many variables involved in your one all-important lap. I don't have the solution, just commenting.

Today Nate & I are doing the B races, he goes first. Basically gives us a chance to ride the course at race speeds before the main event. Last year your start was determined by lottery, as I think about it...the TT lap on that snowy site may be just as much a lottery in itself.

Later,

TK

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

ck...

Yesterday was another nice day in Portland. More good coffee, food, & a journey around town on bikes. Ended up hooking up with a Chris King factory tour hosted by Jay Sycip. Sweet operation. Chatted about gravel events with the marketing director Chris Distefano who already had Gravel Worlds on his radar for events to watch in 2011. Cool? Weird for sure?

Industry tour continued with our annual visit to the Castelli offices & then a dusk rush hour ride back to our night's lodging.

Headed out for more coffee & food now then start the journey to Bend.

Later,

TK

Monday, December 6, 2010

Sometimes I forget...

...how much fun this can be. Why was yesterday fun? I actually felt like I was racing. Course had dried out a bit more, it was a little more technical, & I had the right air pressure. I feel like Saturday, to compound my general flatness, I ran to low a pressure on the soft course & it just made a bad day worse.

Finished 8th & I'm super-stoked about it. It was fun as hell. Fought it out the whole race with Daniel Casper from MN & a cat named Tom Feix from SF. Casper bested me but I held off Mr. Feix.

I locked up my 4th place in the series, podium was not really a possibility after so-so results in L-ville & FoCo. If I'd fallen apart yesterday Casper could have snuck in with a high finish...maybe.

TP rode to a solid 4th both days & locked in his 2nd place overall. Great job man!

Wood-nuts also enjoyed the beautiful day Sunday rocking to a 26th, improving 19 spots from Sat., while having way more fun doing it! Mod struggled with an uncharacteristic bout with cramps & had to pull the plug early.

What's next...spending one more day in Portland & cruise down to Bend tomorrow. Racing on Wednesday, TT on Thursday, & race again on Friday. Heard that they had another foot of snow there Saturday night to add to the piles they've already had over the last week.

Finally raining here this morning, more Portland like I guess.

Huge thanks to Nate & Emily Meschke for the housing! Great folks with a great vibe.

Later,

TK

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Day one...

...hard to describe. Course wasn't particularly muddy with the exception of a couple spots but just soft enough everywhere that I never felt like I could get rolling. At one point I t-boned a guy who got sideways in a corner & a lap later hit the deck in the same corner. I wish I could blame those gaffs for my 15th place but no power is the real culprit. Was I having fun? Not particularly, but it wasn't a nightmare. Still holding on to my 4th place in the series but still have to "show up" today so as I don't give it away.

I wasn't the only one struggling in our merry band...Mod fought for a 21st & Nate for a 45th in their race. Tough day.

Today's the last day of the 2010 USGP...I saw them rerouting the course through a super- muddy section of the MX track. Should be fun?

Later,

TK

Friday, December 3, 2010

green...

...yeah you can tell I don't fly to much. Wi-fi on the plane, damn! About 30 minutes from Portland with wood-nuts sitting next to me hammering away on his iPhone also. Sun shining at 40k, hope it's this nice on the ground. Suspect it's a tad warmer down there.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

here we go...

...5 races in 7 days (I'm counting next Thursday's seeding TT as a race).

Am I ready? Hmmmm?

I'll post when I can.

Later,

TK

Sunday, November 28, 2010

whoops...

...wasn't I supposed to be a Jingle CX? With a 10 day trip to Oregon looming, something had to give. Bummer, but it was the annual to Coralville, IA. Always love racing there, lots of great people. Part of the reason for not making the journey was the need to get everything ready for "the trip" but an equally important part was the need to spend some time at home as well as the fact that I've been into work for a couple hours every day getting ready for yet another short week (for me that is).

Portland weather...rain & more rain, wouldn't expect anything else. Bend weather...snow & more snow, had that last year so I know what to expect. Borrowed these images below from www.pdxcross.com, shots from an event at the raceway. Tons of great photos on the site to check out, lots of "what I am getting myself into" images to ponder. If my equipment isn't beat down enough this should stick a fork in it...

Do I miss not being at Jingle, yeah I do. Am I glad I stayed home, yep!

Later,

TK

Friday, November 26, 2010

I had a dream last night...

...ok, a nightmare. During a race I took a bike from the pit & then I couldn't find my way back onto the course. The course was there I just couldn't tell which way I was supposed to go? In frustration I ended up throwing my bike like 50 feet over a fence (I guess I had super-powers in this dream). Once I retrieved my bike I rode it around an inner city setting until I flatted my rear tubular on a big piece of brown glass. I interpret this dream in one of two ways, either something bad is going to happen to me or the bad thing has already happenned in my dream & I'm home free. We'll see how it plays out.

The final push of the season is here. The bikes & gear are leaving for Oregon, actually KC, on Sunday. The KCCX guys are probably pulling out Tuesday in the Trek Store Sprinter van pulling a trailer with all their gear as well as ours. Same scenario as last year. Thanks guys! Have a safe trip! You had your share of travel drama last year it'll be all good this go around:)

That means I have to have all my shit organized & ready to go to KC by Saturday night. I spent a couple hours in the lab last night prepping my race bike. Done with that one. I had my propane blast furnace keeping me toasty...


Started with the temperature at 38 degrees & within 20 minutes it was 48 & by the time I closed up the lab an hour and a half later it was nearly 60. The blast furnace was a christmas gift from my wife last year & it rocks! Years past I would drag bikes into the basement during the winter, pain in the ass. Now if I only had a floor drain, running water, bathroom, sat. tv, and a fridge I'd be set.

Need to get the pit bike prepped but I'm still riding it today & tomorrow...

Later,

TK



Tuesday, November 23, 2010

training races...

...ummm, I mean Lincoln CX weekend.

Kind of looks like I'm riding a rear flat. Pump says 32...I wonder what it really is?
I went into the weekend with the attitude of just have fun. Wearing the hat of race director/racer is a stressful combo. It worked...I had fun. Am I glad it's over, no doubt!

Everyone that helped...awesome job!

Later,

TK

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Monday, November 15, 2010

damn...

Saturday's course froze overnight along with a fresh dusting of snow. By 10:30, my start time, the sun popped out & the course was in full meltdown. Mud again. Saturday was slop, yesterday was grease. I managed to turn a decent start into a tangled wipe out coming off the flyover, went from about 6th to 20 something as I struggled to get up while bikes were bombing down at me coming off the flyover. By the time I had the course figured out the race was coming to an end, scratched my way back to a 15th place finish. Not what I wanted but...

TP rocked it for the win, awesome man!

In the 35+, Mod 14th & Woodman 20th.

Thanks to the folks for being great hosts!

Home last night just before midnight, 5 hours sleep, back to reality. Work is crazy & have to finish up prep for the Lincoln CX this weekend!

Some pictures when I can.

Later,

TK


Saturday, November 13, 2010

Ummmm.....muddy.
I got 8th in the 45+,
35+...Mark 7th & Nate 19th.
Course was in better shape than I had anticipated yesterday. A bit muddy but got in about 6 laps. Course is tough, quite a bit of up & down & pretty bumpy at times. Supposed to be colder today, high of 37 with snow showers. I'm guessing the ruts we laid down yesterday afternoon will be frozen this morning. The Cat 4's @ 8:30 will have a pretty wild ride.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Drove through pouring rain, sleet, & heavy snow at times to get here last night. 21 degrees now but it's supposed to be sunny & in the 40's today. A couple inches of snow on the ground which should melt off & make this afternoon's course inspection interesting, that is if they let us on the course...

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

boots on the ground...

My parents are hard at work, enjoying the unbelievable fall weather & getting more spy photos of the New Belgium Cup USGP venue in Fort Collins, these are from yesterday...






I'm banking on the conditions being pretty tough, fairly cold & a bit muddy. Pessimistic? Maybe, but if it's not how I just described...no problem, at least I was ready for the worse.

Thanks mom & dad, see ya soon!

Later,

TK

Sunday, November 7, 2010

straight outta Lecompton...


Here's how the story goes (or something like this)...guy down in Lecompton (Lawrence area) gets into CX & then turns over a sweet piece of land for a permanent venue. There was even the making of some sort of oval track? Not sure what was going on there have to ask. Course was great, thanks Michelle & crew! Pictured below is a taste of what we saw, might look tame but the surface was pretty bumpy & every gradual downhill was followed by an equally (if not longer) up. The arms & back (which was already sore driving down) took a pounding, tubulars were/are the saving grace on this type of surface. Off-camber everywhere & a huge spiral (seems to be real popular these days). All picture credit goes to Roger, abundant as usual, thanks man!
Me & macaroni entering the spiral...
Somewhere lost in the spiral...
My day...I'm unsure what my form is right now? I feel good, or maybe I should say "ok". Something just seems to be missing. I don't feel particularly fast or slow just somewhere? The expression "going through the motions" comes to mind. Fun? Yeah I had fun, 67 minutes of torture, yeah it was fun:)

I'll say it again, folks down there did a good job with the course.

Here it is November 7th & we're still racing in 60+ degree weather. I haven't even had mud on my tires this season, haven't worn anything but a short sleeved skinsuit. That may change for Fort Collins next weekend. I see some small chances for precipitation, but they have been just as dry there as we have been here. Temperature wise though it looks like the longsleeve will be coming out.

Today we're dialing in the Pioneers course since I'll be out of town this coming weekend & the Lincoln CX Weekend is the following weekend! I've spoken to a lot of folks from the KC area that are making the trip up, just want to let you all know we appreciate it. If you've raced at the Pioneers venue you know how sweet it is, spread the word!

The final push is on. Fort Collins this weekend, Lincoln CX the weekend after that, then Jingle the weekend after that, then Portland the weekend after that, then Nationals in Bend the weekend after that. SON-OF-A...

I'm just glad to be home today (most of it) spending it with the family.

Later,

TK



Saturday, November 6, 2010

Trying to figure out mobile blogger. Can get words to post but not pix...standby
hmmmm....

Thursday, November 4, 2010

FC spy photos...

...thanks mom:)





These are from Monday. The flyover is already there, you can see it off in the distance in the first photo. My Dad said quite a bit of elevation change & if it's wet it's going to be a mess.

Later,

TK

Sunday, October 31, 2010

2011 CX Nats cancelled...


Well I guess postponed might be a better word, or delayed. Madison, WI will be the future home of the 2012/2013 CX Nats. So Nationals are moving to January to get lined up for Masters World's coming to Louisville in 2012 & ultimately Worlds/Worlds in 2013. I got one thing to say...Louisville you'll need to figure out the parking scene. Other than that the people, venue, & city of Louisville are pretty sweet.
I'm happy Nationals are returning to the Midwest, having the option to drive is nice. Am I happy about the move to January? On the surface...no, I'm not. Extending the season another month doesn't sit well with me. Another month of training, with possibly a chunk of it indoors due to potential crappy conditions here in the Midwest. Folks from the West Coast, South, & Southeast are saying "bring it on!". Can I pull it off, of course I can. What's the reward? Freakin' Master's Worlds in the U.S.!!!! That's all.
They're saying a resounding number of people participated in a survey & stated that moving Nationals to January is a good idea. I must have have missed that survey or if I participated I can't remember. I'd be curious to see the demographics regarding those who were in favor of the move. Geography, category, whatever...
It might sound like I'm not for the move, I guess I'm not, but the move makes sense because staying motivated from the 2nd week in December (old Nationals time slot) to mid-January would be a really tall order without the change.

In the mean time...I'm going to enjoy the most awesome Fall we had since I don't know when. Unbelievable.
For those of us heading to Fort Collins in two weeks...it appears some wintery weather is on the horizon. Bring it on!

Later,

TK

Thursday, October 28, 2010

my old ky home...

Experienced my first flyover last weekend. It was sweet. Steep run-up, about a two bike length remount zone, & then a steep drop-in. Read that Ft.Collins will have one & also heard Jingle Cross is busting one out. This feature can't be cheap, at least if ya build it right...


I'm pretty good at taking sub-par pictures, I got the subject, sort of...
Every once in awhile I get an "ok" shot. It's hard for our crew to grab pix of each other with our events being back to back. Even harder is for us to help each other in the pit. Right now we're on the "hope you don't need a pit bike plan" & if you do just hope you can self-serve it outta the pit with some sort of efficiency...
BTW - these are all camera phone pictures, not bad...

Later,

TK

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

ky...

in the colonel's country...
little dude had the sweet pile of hedge balls going & you can see his plastic sword laying on the ground behind him...
shhhh....
Later,

TK

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Day too...

Hot again. Felt a little better today but so did some others & grabbed 9th. Hardly call it a smooth effort, choppy would be a better description but finished strong. I feel fortunate to be able to make these trips to this national series. Everyone of these stops has a "Nationals" feel to it & the competition is crazy tough. Both days I found myself in battles with foes from all over the U.S. Made a lot of new acquaintances & looking forward to the next stop in Ft. Collins in 3 weeks.

In the 35+...
Mod 3rd!
Matt T 12th!
Woodman 34th after flatting and switching bikes, tough outing but he hung in there

Later,

TK

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Luh-ville day one...

Freaking tough. Dust bowl. Hot. 4 times off the bike every lap. Barriers, flyover, sandpit, & a run up. Had to settle with 8th place & dug deep for that. In the 35+, mod 8th, matt t 13th, woodman 17th.

Do it all again tomorrow:)

Later,

TK

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

b-vard 0h-10...

Went pretty good. Worst start in recent memory but settled in after that. I'll just call the start "practice at getting around people", some that shouldn't have been lined up in front of you in the first place. My own damn fault though, had to get one last bathroom stop in right before the start then botched the remount after the scrum at the first barrier. My goal for the day was just a good hard effort, mission accomplished with an hour plus outing around a a very power oriented course in 80 degree weather.

Me & macaroni entering the sand section, if there was a deciding moment of the race it took place near here. Rockin' the new Capo skinsuit, unzipped a bit to let the gray chesties flow...
I like this shot (photo credits to roger) cuz it kind of looks like I have everything under control entering the sand, but it was here I bobbled with three to go & lost contact with the folks I was just a couple seconds behind.May never have caught them but...
My day ended in 8th place. Marshall & some other dude were my carrot but both rode consistent & I just couldn't get up to them. Good clean riding boys.

Lincoln crew, yeah I know mod lives in Omaha but he lived in LNK for 25 years before that.
Mod & MT had a great rides ending up 4th & 5th, hell yeah! Man! That's a shifty looking bunch...
Later,

TK

Saturday, October 16, 2010

i'm sorry...

...but this blog has become stale. Prior to CX there was always pictures from the surrounding countryside featuring various interesting (at least to me) sights I encountered on my gravel adventures. Now...I spend my evenings & some weekends (when were not traveling to race) in local (some secret) locations getting my cross on. Not very exciting stuff to the outside observer.
Is this a promise to juice things up for the reader? Hell no! Not going to make any promises I can't keep.
So what's on the horizon for me & macaroni. Sunday making our way to Wyandotte Co. for the Boulevard Cup. I believe I've been to this race every year since its inception. My dad came with me the first year & I won the B race. He cheered me on each lap from the comfort of the free food zone with a bowl of chili in his hand. Went home with a sweet pint glass trophy & a 12-pack of Boulevard from the raffle. Next Friday I'll be heading to Louisville, KY for rounds 3 & 4 of the USGP of CX battle royale. Looking forward to it.
For those of you in the area (or out of the area) make sure you get on up to Skyview Park In Norfolk next Saturday for the Skyview CX Classic. The EVCC boys & girls are putting on their 2nd annual CX race. Great venue & a great bunch of people. I'm all about positive energy & it is always flowing with these folks. We made it up last year & had a really good time.

Next Sunday is racing here in Lincoln.

Have a good one!

Later,

TK

Monday, October 11, 2010

the vdp sessions...

after 2 weekends away from home, decided to stay close & get some things done...
doesn't mean we didn't ride. 2 days & 2 throw downs...good weekend.

Later,

TK

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

omaha & madison dump...

This last weekend saw us racing, sort of locally, up in Omaha. Maybe it was the "over the bars" in the sand during my first warm up lap on Saturday (actually the first 2 minutes on the bike) or maybe it was the "couldn't get the foot unclipped" shoulder first pile drive into the only barrier on the course during the race but Saturday was a tough outing. I fought the course all day but managed a 5th because others had an even worse day. The wood-dog had his day though & had a great ride for the win, nice job man! Sunday - much better affair, felt pretty darn good. 4th for me. Chased 3rd all day (couldn't get there but kept him looking in his rearview) & had to keep the hammer down to keep ahead of those chasing. Sunday was mod's day, nice riding man! It's now Tuesday morning & I'm still beat down.
bike wash, Sun Prairie FD style...
base camp...
pre-pre-ride on Friday...
bonding with the KC boyz on Friday...
Mouray...
wood-dog...
btw-this guy is coming on strong! Nice riding this past weekend buddy...
the run-up, errr ride up for some of the pros...
our observation fort under the camera scaffold at the top of the "run up", we invited Mr. Jenks over as our honored guest...
Later,

TK