Friday, November 5, 2010

CX season in full swing

This coming weekend is the Murrysville CX race. Team Ag3r-ButlerHealthSystem is a co sponsor of the event. We plan on having a near full turn out of team members ( ten are registered) in support of Freddie Fu and UPMC. This event is one of the favorites that we will participate, featuring an off camber section, muddy run up and jump the shark barriers. Last two years we had plenty of wind and rain.
Last weekend Kirk, Steve, Mike and myself went to Marilla Park in Morgantown. This race featured a very steep and long run up that thank God was not too wet. True to fashion the fans lugged into the park their front porch couches and reclined while spectating. I should have known we were only miles away from the WVU campus. Beer and donuts were featured at the top of the run up and none of it was found to be actually consumed as intended for. Do not do this at home.
While there is plenty of CX racing left we have early leaders in several categories.

Dirty Mike; PT Barnum award for self promotion bringing to life the "Double Cross" series.
Steve "Hacksaw" Brewer; Steely McBeam award for twisting the most metal and leaving the largest debris field since the Evil Knievel ditched his bike over the Grand Canyon.
Brian "Mario" Hopkins; Gets the Al Gore award for using up his lifetime of Green credits in one weekend in search of the perfect race in Cincinnati. He didn't bring home any Skyline Chili. Thats code for missing the podium.
Steve "Squeaky" Marlette; The only racer in a complete season never to shower as he has yet to get dirty in a single race. Hey let someone pass you and see how it feels to eat mud for a diet.
HD "tube tied"; still experimenting with "Optimo Air" pressure and only finding out their will be a new class for the most pinch flats in a season. Oh yeah a record he already owns from last year.

For the rest of us we will keep on trying to get to the podium one step at a time. Come on down and watch.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Roadies change with the season

Road season to date I have posted 3,000 miles with another month to go. I have covered most of the tri county area with a generous amount of group rides, ridden in Maryland last month and climbed Wisp on my Birthday. The Butler County Stage race was a huge success with the promoter Ed Johnson and Henry Dimmick Team AG3r Director putting many hours of effort making sure this race was the best in the State. I am proud to be associated with these guys and pleased they let me play with them. Fred Gohh started off his inaugural year as Director of Team Citius. Very noteworthy as Team Citius is dedicated with the development of junior racers. My thanks to them for letting me join their group rides and giving the rabbits someone to jump out on.

I entered 10 time trials this summer posting personal records in 8 of the 10 races. The boys at Pro Bikes hooked me up with a set of HED 3's, therefore I reached out to technology for a boost.

This season I had the misfortune of busting two sets of wheels, one of which I have not seen back from Mavic. Trek of Pittsburgh has helped with quick repairs so I would not loose any road time.

Now we turn to Cyclocross for racing. Again learning my lesson from earlier this year I am turning to technology for help. I acquired a Specialized tri cross (thanks HD) and attended a clinic with a real coach. Yes we learned how to mount a bike. And then we learned how to dismount. That took 55 years to learn.

It is fall and football season but I feel like we are just starting.

Friday, September 3, 2010

This has nothing to do with a bike

I know your sick of hearing bike stories. So I will tell another side to this strange summer.
We went whitewater rafting. Top of Wisp Mountain in Maryland there is a man made rafting center. A world class facility that brings in young kayakers training for the Olympics. Sarah says they are cute too, but I can only attest to some of the female paddlers.
Sarah and Matt with Uncle David joined me on a cool sprinkly day on the lazy river. Well not so lazy, we were all thrown out multiple times. We started off with trepidation and ended up surfing and jumping off rocks into the hydraulics. Diane and Riley took photos of the action. Diane still in pain from last years trip, oh well she'll heal.
Try it, a short drive from Pittsburgh and a sure good time.

Arlington National Cemetary Honors our Brave

Matt and I travelled to Arlington National Cemetery to bear witness to the internment of Jenna Wilcox ASAF AC. Jenna was a very important member of our family and we loved her and love her parents very much. While in Afghanistan Jenna went out of her way to help the people she was there to serve. She was performing architectural duties in the rebuilding of the country's schools and infrastructure. Jenna called out for assistance in the form of donations from friends here stateside. Diane collected school supplies and sent a box over to a school in the building. we were very happy to help, more importantly we were proud that Jenna was over there doing good things.

Arlington NC handled the military proceeding remarkably respectful and made us proud to be Americans.

When Matt and Sarah were very young we went with Peter and Jenna to the ski slopes. I remember to this day the three of them zipping up and down with reckless abandon.

Take a trip to Washington DC and spend four hours at Arington National Cemetery.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Heat Wave

Best way to beat the heat is a boat ride with a swim or two. This weekend we found ourselves out in the soak zone twice at Shenango PA. The best entertainment is in the parking lot and launch ramp. I arrive to see an Escalade cut off 3 people trying to launch. In his hurry boxed in a fellow boater locking him out from launching. Continuing to watch this 3 character team we see them bouncing and dragging the boat along off the bottom. Well he blocks my way from launching and I finally see the rig get pulled out and noticed they launched without a plug in the bottom.

The next lady is parking a pick-up and trailer, she jackknifes and gets trapped. Instead of getting help rams in in reverse and pushes the wheels 90 degrees and into the truck bed leaving a scar. She continues to find another spot and gets stuck doing the same thing. I saw the owner in his boat and told him he better get up to the lot and save us all a little in collision repairs.

I could have made decent pay with a pair of jumpers and a jug of spare gas.

The best part is the go fast boat getting towed in after running out of fuel.

This picture is the Pirate ship with a neat Figurehead.

Yes I can still get up on one ski.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Fathers Day Ride, Beautiful Lake Erie

Sunday at Erie had a big Ag3r Butler Health Systems turnout. Donnie and Dave. Brian, Mike, Kirk, Sam, Randy, Steve and Steve. Owen also came out to join us.

An interesting day on my way to a personal best. On the 7 mile mark heading back with a beautiful day slight wind in the face heading back past the half way mark. What happens, a white truck and a green sedan stop to have a conversation blocking both lanes. As I approach I think I might have to either go on the grass or split between them riding the lane divider line. This way I could go between them and join the conversation thus earning my moniker of x-ray.
But I am spoiled as the green car puts in reverse and proceeds to do a 3 point turn completely blocking the road. Kirk to Scottie; ENGINE ROOM COMPLETE STOP.
Man that was close as I came to a complete stop to weave around one and behind the other on my way to attempt to save my ride.
The cookies were nice, glazed oatmeal.

Monday, June 14, 2010

50 is the new...What you say

It is new ITT season and off to the races we go. Friday night at the track and Deerfield Ohio were the last events. Friday we had humid evening that turned to rain. After slowing up the last two laps due to a wet track I still managed a personal best. Deerfield Ohio was a nice drive. An out and back course rose gently into the wind and on the flip side had wind at the back. Plenty of heat brought out allot of sweat and a wall of humidity. Nice high mph on the way back. Still not in good form but it is coming.

Rich and Kirk showed the way with better times than I. Something to shoot for the next time out. This photo is of the 50 plus group I tend to hang out with these days.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Presque Isle Spring 2010

7 am arrival and the camp AG3r was set up and awaiting by HD and crew. Rain was causing puddles and pooling on the course. Fortunately decision was a go for racing. In the rain, 49 degrees and some wind made for less than ideal conditions. Not to mention that Skip and team, Brian and the two Steve's showed up. They sure clog up the podium.

At the start it seemed to immediately begin to rain harder. Had a hard time getting my speed up despite I thought I had warmed up appropriately. Mid course I got the speeds where I wanted, felt good and fast but failed to compensate for the poor start. I was warm enough and blocked out the bad conditions. The legs were stiff from the cold and the back was tight.

But I had my new wheels, they will carry me across the finish line. Not so, you can spend the money on technology but you better man up with the training. The official results for my bib number were lost so it is my word as to the finish.

Looking forward to next time.

Spring Break 2010 Park City Utah

Spring Break this year took us back to Park City Utah. Diane and I were joined by sisters Martha and Lucy, cousins John and Sharon. Returning to Park City from 2008 we rented a 3 bedroom pad with hot tub views of Park City and a shorter drive to Deer Valley. John insisted we try again the Turkey Chili at Deer Valley, yes just as good. Sharon skiied like she never left the slopes and filled out the harmonies with the girls singing in the back of the Ford Flex. Off day we ventured to Sundance for a meal and a soak in the Crater hot springs. No injuries but the healing waters felt great.

Ski conditions were perfect with increasing variations of perfect all week. After a hearty lunch were were strongly advised to "take those girls to McConkeys" so off we went to the top to pay umbrage to Shane.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Start the new year off the right way

Did you stay up late on New Years Eve, party like an animal, embarrass yourself and forget about all of those resolutions before the 1st day of the year? Not me, off to bed early, rise early and get on that bike. First ride of the year in a snow storm and sub teen temperatures was the only way to get the year started. 2009 I went to France, beat my personal tt records, entered the most events, swam 74 miles biked 4,000 miles and yes Diane and I are married 31 years. How can 2010 be any better. I tell you how, if I am even able to have half as much fun and stay healthy still be a good husband and father everything else will fall into place. 2010 promises to be full of adventure.