I fear this could turn into a very long post; I'll try to keep it brief for you attention deficit people.
Saturday we made the 4.5 hour drive up to Wausau. We pre-rode as soon as we arrived.
I never have a good pre-ride at Wausau. I hate it. I always puke, get sick, overheated. Saturday was no different. I felt terrible. I ended up puking after the ride in the bathroom. I felt a little better but my stomach was a cramping mess for the rest of the evening. I was definitely not looking forward to Sunday.
The course had a super long lead out and what seemed like barely any singletrack and to top it off, my fork was broken. Ugh.
After the pre-ride we headed to our hotel, left again to grab some pizzas and sat in our hotel room chowing down while watching the Blackhawks. What a game. Both teams seemed a little out of sorts, but it still made for some great watching. I can't wait for tonight! Anyway lights out just before 11pm.
I actually slept really good for a change. Usually I wake up at 3am, 4am, 5am and then fall asleep til about 6 and then feel all groggy and shit.
Down to breakfast, then cleared out our room and headed to 9 mile.
Man was it hot. I bitched and crabbed and moaned about this race all the way up to the start line. And then I complained to fellow racers as we were racing, they were, however, all in agreement, it was brutal.
I hated the lead out. It was so damn long. My side started hurting before the race started. I couldn't figure out what it was; I still don't know. But it really did mess with me while riding. Every bump or rock I hit would seize my back right in that area. It actually distracted me from my normal hip issues, but I'd rather deal with my hip issue, at least that's just uncomfortable but doesn't really affect me until maybe later in the race.

My second lap I must've settled a bit. My side still hurt but I wasn't gasping for air (it hurt when I'd take a deep breath too). I went back in forth with some peeps so it was good to feel like I was actually in a race. I have to thank Brenda. That girl just keeps you motivated and makes you smile! I love her.
The majority of the comp men were awesome. My only complaint is that some of them need to call the pass. A couple times I'd be sandwiched by them passing simultaneously on my left and right and nobody called it. Hopefully it's not a disaster waiting to happen.
My third lap I'm not sure if I just got used to the pain in my side or it was starting to subside because I actually felt like I could maneuver the bike again and I could put a little bit of power to the pedals. I actually felt best on my 3rd lap, which is way weird for me. I passed, Karlene and then passed Hannah in the last sections of singletrack. I hung onto the comp guys wheels in the singletrack just hoping that Karlene and Hannah weren't right on my wheel. After getting out of the singletrack I gave it my all to the finish.
I pulled off my jersey right away; I didn't care if it was like slut move (as someone once told me they call that). Whatever. It was hot and I was way overheated.
I'm going to talk to Brent and Ryan about next year's kits being full zip. Design be damned. ;)
I hated the course on pre-ride. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that you know how much good singletrack is actually there. And when there are super long sections of open and more climbing than usual, well, let's just say it's not a fave. After racing this course, I actually didn't mind it. It didn't suit me really because of so much open, but it kicked my ass and when it was all said and done it was awesome. Someone told me, I can't remember who, just finish the race, just think, you'll be able to eat whatever you want next week and it won't matter. I won't lie, that did keep me motivated more than a few times to keep going.

Thanks to AmyD and MTBGirl for taking pics.


mountain biking

Since IL has turned into some sort of rain state (soon to be the mosquito state I'm sure) I headed up to WI yesterday with Sara.
Getting there took way longer than expected. If Sara weren't in the car just in from AZ I would've been pissed. But really all it did was give me more time to talk her ear off.

We rode, chatted, laughed, gossiped, picked bugs out of our hair, and flicked ticks off our legs... good times. I can't wait for her and Zach to come in again (July I think). We'll do a day of Kettle and pick a day for the Mesa. I seriously can't wait.

Hopefully the trails around here will be given a chance to dry out. It seriously is a bummer to have nice weather and no where to ride dirt.



I'm not gonna say anything about the fucking weather.


I wanna ride...

I didn't ride last night. Instead I met the fatties out at the Mesa to decide where the next trails should go. It was kind of a tease to be out there not riding. New stuff should be cool though. Some of it is a ways away however.

I'm hoping to be out later. Mesa bound.

Sara will be here on Saturday. I'm hoping we don't get a lot of rain on Friday- preferably none. We'll see. Same weather pattern as last year... rain and then the day the trails should be ride-able we get rain again. I'm hoping the pattern breaks soon.

P.S. I hope at least one of the kits I've been impatiently waiting for arrives today.



For some reason that city name reminds me of Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings.
As if my nerdiness needed to be further confirmed...
Anyway, WORS #2 was this weekend, Rhinelander. As cool as that place is, it's Canada really and Canada is a long way away from a south suburb of Chicago.
Luckily we had an alternative, The Illinois Homegrown Series. Today's race was in Metamora and put on by PAMBA. This was just over a 2 hour drive for us.
We arrived in plenty of time for John to pre-ride. I didn't want to do a whole lap, just get a feel for the entrance/exit really.
So John got back and pretty much told me what I expected. It was 90% singletrack.
First was Zoe's race. Turns out it was a grass race and she was riding her small wheels. John and I had to push her the majority of the race, but that was fine. She still had fun. Even though she did cry.

For finishing she received a water bottle with a full size Snickers bar! Um, jealous!
John and I started at noon. Shortly after Zoe's race I lined up. Women's Open started with the sport men. This made me very anxious. I was relieved when the women asked to start after them.
I was second into the singletrack. I was able to get by the lead girl when she bobbled after the creek crossing. So it was me and Betsy cruising through the singletrack. I know she's a stronger rider than I am, but I also know I'm a good singletrack rider. Still though, I was breathing hard and she wasn't. My hip and back were already starting to hurt, not to mention I had numbness in my leg starting (I'm beginning to think I have some kind of sciatica going on).
The course was awesome. Bench cut singletrack, whoops, bridges, multiple creek crossings, log overs, ravines. GAH! SO.RAD. Betsy got by me when we were spit out on essentially one of the only places on the course not singletrack (there and the start/finish). It was about a mile long and perfect to get some food and drink in ya.
I would say all the sport men we came upon let us by right away, barely having to ask.
I only had one problem with one dude. I'll get to him later.
Moving into the second lap Beverly creeped up on me on the switchback climbs. She is such a strong rider. So is Betsy for that matter. I had settled on my 2nd lap riding my own race, however the hip/back/leg thing was very discouraging. I don't think my result would have changed, but not having any power and just being uncomfortable sort of sucks. To add to that, I had issues with my 2nd gel. It just didn't want to settle in my stomach. Yuck.
My favorite part of the course was the beginning singletrack (all benchcut and downhill and then there was a section with a few log overs. I just love that shit.
I finished 3rd. Beverly had actually passed Betsy to take the win! WOW. How cool to come from that far back and win. Good stuff.
I sat around waiting for John to come in and trying to stretch out when I saw John come in all by himself. I knew he had won! How very cool for him. I think I was more excited than he was.
Afterwards we cleaned up and headed for awards. Ryan was 3rd age, I finished 3rd in women's open and of course John won expert. Cash payouts for both of us. After race entries paid and gas money and food, we were still up over $50.
I hit a tree once while racing. Doris took the brunt of it. Her glass dome and fist are a bit bruised.

I was going to dedicate a paragraph to the sport racer dude I mentioned above- who is the reason I'm sitting here drugged on ibuprofen and an ice pack, but I'm not. I'm super annoyed at his lack of understanding what racing is about, but, I guess, that's racing.

There's a pretty cool photo sequence of John entering one of the creek crossings.
Start here and hit the arrow forward. I'm amused easily, but it is cool.

Next up: WORS #3. Wausau.


Because I'm so not going to Canada next weekend

Rhinelander is frickin' far.
I have no desire to sit in the car for that long for a 2 hour race.
It doesn't help that the kids are still in school, the drive back is hell, not to mention the next day.
PAMBA has a race scheduled for the same Sunday. I'm 99% sure we'll be going down there.

Anyone want to come? It'll be fun.


more frame talk...

So to get my mind off of waiting for the Form (which reminds me, I have to finish getting my measurements), I've been looking at full suspension bikes.
I'm not big on full suspension for cross country riding 'round here, but they can be fun. My reason for really wanting one is, well, let's be honest, it's another bike to geek over, but a couple Super D's on my tentative schedule have me really thinking on what I'd want.
I've been looking at the Yeti forever. I've always had a soft spot for them since Missy Giove's days. The A.R.C. was so pretty. I can't imagine riding one now... That rear triangle screams ouch to my back. But their full suspension bikes, yum.

I love the ASR-5 and just recently fell in love with the ASR-5 carbon. Yeti is one of my customers at work, so the deal I'd get is a steal. HOWEVER, their sizing is wonky for me. Like WTF- the XS has a 15.8" seattube with a 21.6 toptube, which is essentially my Eriksen- but the Yeti has a 68° headtube. Ugh. So the small jumps to a 18.5"! seattube and 22.6" toptube. Um, I'd have like 2" of post. So I'm not going to take a chance on either size and nobody has a demo. So I'm looking elsewhere.

Elsewhere brought me to the Ibis Mojo. I have a love/hate relationship with that frame. The only thing I can't get by on the Mojo is the cable routing on top of the toptube. Ugh. The only other way they could've routed it is under the downtube and I don't like that much either. On top at least it won't get muddy, and I usually don't sacrifice function over aesthetics and downtubes in my experience get pretty darn muddy.

Now, what color?

And since this wouldn't be a blog post without me complaining about the weather, WTF Mother Nature? At least we aren't getting snow like some of our friends up in Wisconsin.

Mom's day picnic today. Errands. Blah.


New frame... again

Keeping in touch with Zach and Sara since they've left, Zach has gone on about Daryl from Form. Forwarded me pics of his frames and just spoke of him as a friend in general. I had the fortune of meeting and riding with Daryl while on vacation. While we were out there, that Saturday, we spent the day essentially in Daryl's front yard- the Sedona trails.
He was riding a ti 29er that was pretty pimped out. Super clean and just beautiful, and you all know how picky I am about aesthetics.

At this point I was still on the fence about getting a custom 29er built up because I had maybe a ride or two on the Superfly. The Superfly was/is my experiment into a lightweight 29er, do I want to race one or do I just want it as a fun bike? Seeing his bike was definitely leaning me towards- yes you want a ti 29er (duh).
After getting some time on the Superfly, as much as I dislike the geometry, I climb well, it's fast and just plain fun. I love my 26" bike still, but there is just something about a 29er that is fun; I can't explain it really.
As mentioned before I've had issues with the Superfly steering and handling in general. I know I'd eventually adapt to that, but what I probably won't adapt to is the carbon. Carbon is sick light, but it feels dead. I'm not sure if I can explain it, but a ti or steel bike just feels alive; it's forgiving, yet stiff. I've been spoiled. It was pretty much a no-brainer that I would get a custom ti 29er and I've contacted Daryl at Form to do it.
So I dug the handling of the Ferrous, the climbing of the Superfly and the feel of my Eriksen- the Form will have it all, not to mention a killer headtube badge.
Some people say that mountain bikes don't have to be custom... most people who say this have never had a bike built just for them.

Anyway, it's going to be sick!



First race of the year = DNF for me.
I'm sort of bummed but not.

Doc today = antibiotic and pain relief.

Hopefully I feel better in the next couple of days.

John had an awesome result. 17th overall. Very nice! I'm proud of and happy for him.

Probably no Rhinelander for us. I wish. But it's like an 8 hour drive. Casey has soccer that Saturday. There's a PAMBA race that Sunday, so maybe we can race that.

I'd like to ride today but I'm just too tired. The dumb part of me wants to go ride the mesa; the smart part is like JUST GO SIT ON THE COUCH AND WATCH TV.