Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Monday, April 28, 2008
Press Release - Nature Valley Grand Prix Organizers Launch Track Event
Minnesota Fixed Gear Classic, June 7-8, 2008, Blaine Minnesota
Minneapolis, MN (April 25, 2008) — The organizers of the Nature Valley Grand Prix, the top ranked race onthe National Racing Calendar, have agreed to host a track race before their event. The track race, named the MN Fixed Gear Classic, will be held on June 7 - 8, with the Nature Valley Grand Prix following on June 11 - 15.
“Partnering up with this major road event is a great opportunity to get serious media attention for track racing, something that our sport desperately needs,” noted Bob Williams, National Sports Center Velodrome Director. “We have commitments from some of the world’s premiere track cyclists, including several Beijing hopefuls. We are especially excited that Roberto Chiappa, the perennial Italian National Champion and former World Champion sprinter, will be taking part in our events. He will bring excellent form with him, coming off a first place sprint effort at the LA World Cup and a 4th place finish at the recent World Championships.”
The track races will take place at the National Sports Center Velodrome, just north of Minneapolis. The track is an Olympic standard 250m structure built by Ralph Schurman in 1990 and is part of the world-class National Sports Center campus. “Our track has, arguably, the best racing surface in North America and will likely be one of the last afzelia wood tracks ever built. The 1992 Olympic trials were hosted here, as well as the 1999 and 2000 EDS Cups and 2001 Elite Nationals. We hope to bring this beautiful track back into the national spot light,” Williams added.
The Nature Valley Grand Prix is the center of a frenzy of media coverage and hopes to bring track racing into the same spotlight. Both days of track racing will be webcast live, with Saturday’s racing on www.myfox9.com and Sunday’s on www.nscsports.org/velo. Track race highlights will also be included in the TV program aired on Fox Sports Net and on Versus in August.
“We have a unique opportunity to reach the broader cycling audience. On Sunday, June 8, the NSC velodrome is the destination for the MS150, a huge, two-day recreational ride with over 3,500 participants. These people, who are largely unaware of track racing, will be delivered right to our event. They are very influential throughout the cycling community and will be great messengers to help spread the word about track racing if we can put on a good show for them,” David LaPorte, Nature Valley Grand Prix Director, noted.
In addition to building the sport of track racing, event organizers are working to raise funds to support a major re-construction effort for the NSC Velodrome, a wonderful, one-of-a-kind structure. The racing surface is in excellent shape but the substructure is constructed of untreated pine and only has 3 - 5 years of life left. Event officials hope to build a national event to position the track to raise the money for an upgraded substructure. “Riders from outside of Minnesota can help us in the quest by attending and thus building the national profile of our event. We are excited to have the support of the world track community in improving this unique Velodrome,” Williams continued.
The racing program will include a mix of sprint and endurance events. There will also be an invitational flying 1 lap attempt (men/women) to establish a track record for this effort. The purse for the 2-day event is approx. $5,000. Rain date is Monday, June 9th. Host housing and low-cost dormitory housing at the National Sports Center are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Planned Race Events
Women 1 Lap standing TT
Men Flying 200 M TT
Women 1 Mile Sprint heats , 6 laps
Men Chariot heats
Women Miss and Out
Men 50 Lap Points Race
Women Keirin heats
Men Miss and Out
Women 1 Mile Sprint Final
Men Chariot Final
Women Keirin Final
Men 12 K Scratch Race Final
Women 10 K Points Race
Women Handicap heats
Men 1 Mile Sprint heats
Women Miss and Out
Men Keirin heats
Women Chariot heats
Men Miss and Out
Women Handicap final
Men 1 Mile Sprint final
Women Chariot final
Men Team Sprint TT
Women Team Pursuit TT
Men Keirin final
Women 12K Scratch final
Men 20 K Pts /Madison
Saturday, April 26, 2008
See that red thingofajig on the bootied foot? A Chip
ps. the results weren't perfect...
She's hot, smart, fast and when when you win the womens 123 category? You have a soigneur to take off the timing chip...
Durand Champ flexing before his 15 minute effort...
Durand Champs brother before he made a name for himself as Ken Woods Champ...
S-1's fender, I have no idea what Hex Wrench means, but she giggled uncontrollably when asked about it...
My finish line photo of Doug's winning sprint...
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Saturday, April 19, 2008
Monday, April 14, 2008
day 1, Left Joas house with Johnson, Tischler at 4:00 AM. Drove to southern Missouri and rode on a course that held a race the previous weekend. They didn't do a very good job cleaning up after the race, the ditch was full of water bottles, picked out the cool ones. Although I must say that I suspect not all the garbage was race related unless the race was sponsored by Busch Lite. Rode 70 extremely up and down miles, non-stop rollers, nothing huge, but killing my legs. I don't think I should've done lunges and one-leg presses on Monday night, I am hurting... The other 3 are frisky and we're sprinting at every city limit, county, insurance salesman sign. Somehow I win one sprint, Mikey takes the Juligan insurance sign... Found a pristine county road that was absolutely beautiful, one car in 15 miles, we ask him for directions, he has a wonderful southern drawl and tells us he's fished in Minnesota and Alaska, I believe him. Get dropped on the way back in after the boys charge up successive hills, I make the time cut but am drilled.
Spend the night in Branson, which reminds me of Wisconsin Dells except it has bigger and better churches. The one thing about Southern Missouri and Northern Arkansas, the people may live in squalor but god lives in big, spacious brand new churches, somehow he's rich but they aint, go figure. Day 2, the storm passes, bringing sunny WINDY 70 degree temperatures. Get the first case of sunburn for the season. Ride in the Mark Twain forest, another day of unending rollers and did I mention WIND. Do a 10 mile stretch into the wind that seems like 50. Feeling better today, hanging in there for the first 40 miles then I start to weaken. Get dropped on the steepest climb of the day, ride off the road, get buzzed by a cop. Catch the guys on time to refuel. Johnson and Joas hit it hard after the stop, Tischler motorpaces off a car to catch them, I miss Tischlers wheel and get hung out, I'm dead. Ride in the last 25 miles on my own. Ride by some kids with bb guns, they excitedly start pumping them up as I approach, I'm thinking FUCK i'm going to be the first victim for a future Timothey Mcveigh, so I charmingly smile and wave at them, they drop the barrels, saving their ammo for a whimsical bunny or skunk. Whew, there's no way they could've missed my ass, it's as big as the broad sign of a barn... I finally make it back, somehow I make the time-cut, I don't think I did but they guys are being generous. Head to Arkansas, drive over a dam that is about to be unleashed, flooding homes downstream. We're oblivious, trying to figure out why there's so much traffic, ambulance and TV Vans... find out later on the radio. The Metzapotamia wonder bus is supposed to be heading to Arkansas, but they've made a side trip to NORTH FUCKING CAROLINA! Mikey leaves them all love messages on their phones, except for Metza...
Day 3, the mild guy bus from CVCC is already at the cabin 10 miles south of Jasper Arkansaw, headed by Joe W, owner of Spring Street Sports, and 5 other guys, Frank, Tim, Dave, Joe and Potter. The cabins are awesome and the food is great. The Metzapotamia wonder bus in in Georgia/Alabama or Tennessee depending on which version of the story you hear. So now it's time to hit the climbs. The cabin is on a rocky road 1.3 miles from the paved road, I blast it, feeling like Tom boonen on the pave. Unbeknownst to me, I lose a water bottle in my joy. I discover this later to my chagrin, right before the 1st big climb of the day. Before that we hit a nice 3-5 mile twisting descent. With the addition of 20 pounds my climbing has declined severely since my last visit here 3 years ago, but funny, my descending has improved! I finish right behind Johnson and Tischler. Johnson is the best descender I've ever seen, and he's blind as a bat without his glasses, go figure. We hit the Ponca switchbacks and I'm suffering, then we hit the 14% climb at Low Gap then up to the top of Mt. Sherman. I'm hurting, I'm the last guy up, a snake sunning himself on the road is moving faster than I am. Finally I get the payoff , the 5 mile descent to Jasper. After some NOS energy drink and an apple puy, I get some energy and manage to ride pretty good for the next 20 miles or so up the never ending steep climbs that lead us to our prize of the day, Mt. Judea. 3 years ago I paced Johnson up this climb, this year? Last one up. The view on top of Mt. Judea is breathtaking as you can take in the Buffalo River valley, I barely noticed as I struggled. Thankfully Joas waited for me, so we could limp in together. The death march begins heading into an insane 30 mph headhind, crosswind, tailwind all at the same time. After 90 miles and 8800 feet of climbing, we hit the pave and I blast into camp, only a minute or two behind a group of 4 or so, so we didn't do too bad.
The Metzapotamia fun bus finally arrives, bringing the leader himself and Cehaski, Borgy, Tristan, Kent and Tim. Wow, these guys are just as crazy as I last remembered them. Day 4 starts with the wonderguys hungover, we're off for another day of fun and games. I'm progressively getting better as the days pass, Johnson takes the downhill sprint into Parthenon, splitting between a car and a van to take Metza, fucking unbelievable. We do the longest climb of the trip, the 5 miles up Mt. Sherman from Jasper. Again, 3 years ago I was the first guy up the climb, this time I wasn't last finishing ahead of a few others. There was a road race on this road today, they didn't have much of a turnout so they were still giving out gatorade in spiffy discovery bottles so we all got fed on the top of the hill, cool. Then another fun descent followed by the 3.5 mile climb up Boxley, another switchback climb. Metza stops at the bottom to piss, fart and scratch himself, he brings up the rear then collects us all and we fly up to catch the rest. He's got quite the engine on him. Another 70 miles down, bringing us to 300 for 4 days. The night brings a campfire and lots of beer and tomfoolery. We'll just leave it at that. The weather is getting colder, with a high of 40 for the Jasper area. So after about 6 hours of deliberation, fighting and cutting up a few roadmaps the Metzopatomians (the A team) and us (The B team) head south 45 minutes for a warmer ride. Surprisingly it was about 10 degrees warmer, and we get in a nice recovery ride of 60 miles with a few sprints, hard efforts and a funny fucking echelon, with Metza using eloquent language to keep us in line! Johnson wins the last sprint thanks the A team for being so gracious to let us ride with them and we head home. Fun shit....