It is not over till the old skier says it's over. Best way to celebrate your 58th Birthday is to hang out with someone in your own boat so to speak. Diane and I headed up to Candlewood Lake, near Danbury Connecticut for the long weekend. There we met up with Mary, Nancy, Dave and Bruce. Bruce, Dave and I are roommate's in college share the same birthday. We also share the same passion for beer, wings and water skiing. Not always in that order but always in the same grouping. If you are from Buffalo you will know what I mean.
The best way to start the day is a slalom ski before breakfast, we still manage to do this despite Mary's breakfast waiting for us and the nasty hangovers from the home brew the night before.
Yes we can still get up on a slalom early in the am, even in a downpour.
This years camp started off with a bang, got worse and then better. I'll explain.
First easy day started with a 4,000 ft climb up to Gold Mine Hill. Next day a run up Flagstaff, continuing onto Super Flag. Then proceed to Nederland by way of Gross reservoir and Coal Creek. 7,200 ft climbing and a brisk wind in our face headed into Ned. first two descents were on washboard gravel roads. Wednesday and Thursday more of the same punishment. Friday with Deidre as our guide Rich and I did Jamestown and Lee Hill. Friday was our most relaxed climbs and we turned in the best times, Thank you D you showed us the way. It pays to be patient and wait for the legs to show up.
ATA District Championships, Downingtown , PA.
Traveled with Andy and Joey Arduini, Karina Tolentino and Jill McVaugh. We represented Cranberry ATA in the District Championships bringing together 13 states and their respective champions. On a very hot 90 plus degree day, indoors in a non A/C controlled building we gathered with all the best of the best in the North East. My competitive ring did not start till after 2:00 pm making it one hot & long day. In the Black Belt ring were two familiar faces I have competed against before from PA and Virginia. New faces that made it through were from New Jersey. I faced the NJ State Champ in Sparring and Combat CBME. I did compete in Forms and weapons. Forms, Shim Jun, lets say I have much improving to do. Weapons, Ssahng Jeol Bong was my first time in a tournament with the weapon. I had not even tested with it for rank advancement. Sparring, I placed third and lets say I could and should have done better and I am very much looking forward to my next opportunity.
Here it is; Combat Sparring with a Bahng Mahng Ee I took District Champion. I am very proud of this as I felt very strong and particularly fast that day. The competition was at a very high level. The heat was my friend. I took up Taekwondo to help with my competitive cycling. In this case it was my cycling strength and skills that helped me gain the advantage win the title.
This years winter project was to bring my Merckx up to date. A 2001 Merckx Majestic Titanium model with about 60,000 miles. Came with a carbon fork, Dura Ace and Mavic wheels. I bought this bike while I lived in Chicago and consequently rode this throughout the Chicago land area in club rides and local races. I also proudly returned to Arizona on several trips back to my condo as well as rode this in the tour de Tucson and el tour de Phoenix an several occasions earning gold medals.
Here in Butler this is my daily ride and with Ag3r and North Park Velo have been just about everywhere in Beaver, Allegheny and Butler Counties. I love to take this bike back to Buffalo and ride around Grand Island and out to Akron to visit the Octagon house.
With the Help of Lightspeed and Pro Bikes the build went like this.
Pro Bikes strip the bike down to the frame. Send the frame to Lightspeed for bb repairs and a new head tube replacement. This was done to accommodate a 1 1/8" fork. Final finish treatment for the frame to look spanking new.
Pro Bikes built back up with an ENVE carbon fork, Full Dura Ace group 10 speed. New compact crank (to shut up Richey), carbon bars, race saddle and of course matching green tape. The Mavic wheels were sent back to Mavic for a rebuild of race wheels and Dura Ace hubs on Open Pro wheels. Don't forget the Ti bottle cages to top it off.
Now I'm ready.
This years trip with Diane returns us to our favorite slopes at Keystone and Copper. Going all out we stayed at Keystone's River Run Village, walking distance to the Gondola. Great accomodations, better skiing and the best companion. We traversed all of both mountains, basked in sunlight and partied the evenings away. Staying slopeside has its advantages with easy access to ski and food. We went into Frisco, Dillon and Breck for dinner. Surprise was Linda joining us for some runs at the North Peak, she is the best. We met some new friends along the way and on the way out we went through Mt. Evans, Evergreen and Red Rocks.