Sunday, 29 March 2009

Proper pain...

is the pain of trying not to let team mates down. The local 3-up Team Time Trial made that very clear this morning.

From COB TTTmarch 2009

I am definitely lacking zip - happy to chug on the flat at threshold, no worries. Totally unhappy to hit any hills and have to lift the pace to Z6. Engaged thousand yard stare.

Fortunately we had a great team. A philosophy of 'No stress, just ride' and a sensible pacing strategy meant we chugged round nicely.

Chris 'Chairman' Egan was looking 100% Euro-Pro with these bad boys on...

From COB TTTmarch 2009

Luckily I had gone with the sunnies - looking that those without suitable protection is like staring directly at the sun...

Also in the mix on team timetrials this weekend was the pairing of Morris and Rivers. By all accounts it was emotional with Morris unable to move for a couple of hours afterward. Kudos though... 5th overall I hear???

Saturday, 28 March 2009

Sunday, 22 March 2009

Box Fresh II...

This time of year is fantastic. The weather can be great (as it is at the moment) and you can hear the world bursting into life. It's also great because it's the season of new bikes... road bike last week, mtb this week.

From new bike april 2009

Unfortunately I'm down with a minging virus (symptoms general grumpiness and irritability + fatigue) so haven't tested it out in anger yet. Spun round town for an hour or so and it's got the potential to be fast fast fast - but it'll need mega careful setting up.

Wednesday, 18 March 2009

I am...

Lucky. That's what I am. Was out by 4.45 today as the sun was heading down and the mist was hanging over the fields. Yes I choose this lifestyle... but I still think I'm lucky. Evening sun shine, the signs of spring everywhere, not a breath of wind and no sign of clouds... what else does there need to be?

From march evening ride wiht morris

Morris was on a mission. 2 x 20 min sweet spot. I spent my time in the Pain Cave (note capitalisation) last night when I had an appt. with the turbo and Jack Bauer (series 3 episode 3) so was happy to sit on his wheel.

From march evening ride wiht morris

The form is coming Morris... the form is coming!

Sunday, 15 March 2009

Race update...

Got to work on the finish face. Scroll down to the last but one photo.

Not a good look. So un-pro!

Iron mouth....

is what you get when you dig deep. That taste of blood that's in your mouth but should be in your lungs. If you get that taste then it doesn't matter how you do in the end, you gave everything and that's enough.

Today was a good day. The kind of day that gives ammunition to my contention that Spring is the Dangermouse to the Penfold of Summer (confused? British humour at it's greatest!). Summer may be a bit warmer but you don't get the feeling of freshness and positive energy that a sunny spring day gives you. Summer... hah, overrated!

So - first race of the season. Great COBCC turnout. P, Deadly Nedly, Benny D, Gibbo, Griffer and me.

From inberrow rr march 2009
Griffer off camera - chasing cows I think. Photo-credit to the nice bloke in the car park who offered to take the shot.

The course was a bit cheeky, 75 km and rolling with enough wind to make staying away hard. The hardest bit was a dead turn into a draggy climb, if you weren't in the right place there the elastic was going to get really long.

To cut a long race short the strongest guy in the race attacked with 2 miles to go and I was mega chuffed to bridge over to him and hold off the pack. With a total lack of sprint he was always going to win and I was super happy with 2nd - although I was suffering so much I had a face like I was passing a hedgehog.

The rest of the COBCC team went well with P showing herself at the front and finishing in the pack, not bad for the only woman in a Cat. 2/3/4 race.

No racing next weekend - hopefully setting up the new mtb's.

ps - the new bikes were amazing. Super fast, stiff yet comfy, responsive but not twitchy. I really don't think I would have got second on the old bike so... big thanks to everyone at COB for helping me get the right bike and get it set up spot on.

Saturday, 14 March 2009

Box Fresh...

There is nothing like the feel of a new bike. Even opening a fresh packet of coffee isn't as good as the feeling of accelerating a new bike down the street for the first time.

From new bikes march 2009

What's even better is when the new bike is 'proper-nice'.

From new bikes march 2009

And you've got a matching pair to ride together.

From new bikes march 2009

First race tomorrow though... looking forward to that blood in your mouth feeling, sort of.

Friday, 6 March 2009

It's the nasal singing...

...that puts a smile on my face. Yes, the flashback to cross is nice (even though this season ended with more or a phhhaaaaaaaaaaaaaarp than a BANG for me) but the Flemish vocals really make it something else.

Superprestige overzicht 2008-2009 from jef cleemput on Vimeo.

Another vid spotted on Mud and Cowbells - thanks GK.

Sunday, 1 March 2009

Thank God for...

...shin pain. In this case, without a vicious case of the aforementioned running injury I would have fronted up for the full 30 miles in today's Wye Ultra race. As it was I sacked the 30 mile idea a couple of weeks ago and recruited Mick B and Fletch for what proved to be the dream team!

From wye ultra 1st march 2009
Not only did I enjoy running 10 a lot more than I would have 30, but I enjoyed being in a team much more than I would have running solo. I'd forgotten how motivating the desire to not let team mates down is, especially when you know they have/will nail themselves. The post race banter is also better in a team. Of course, winning helps a bit too!

P stepped up too with Tony... who offered to do 20 when their 3rd team mate couldn't make it. Fair play. Note smiles before and after!

From wye ultra 1st march 2009

Badges of merit also go to Boydie, Rob & Elias, John T and Andy T and to Luke B for supporting. However, to be honest the big story of the day was the number and depth of the solo field. The solo winner bashed it out in about 3:30 (therefore repping 7 min miles on a rolling and multi-terrain course!) and there must have been ~100 soloists out there.

Kudos to those who competed & completed (Nathan & Nikki B amongst them).