Monday, March 30, 2009

Busy Bees

Venturing out to Lysterfield today for the first time this year. It seems the trail fairies have been rather busy.

...and over. Makes for a nice new entry into the Comm Games bermed descent.

Speaking of the bermed descent...

...a new one has popped up. Very appropriate considering it's the one you carry the most speed into.

Still a gazzillion too many of these destroying the flow though.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

18 to spare!

Newsflash. UCI updated their rankings.

I've got 38 points next to my name, 18 more than required to line up in Offenburg and Houffalize. That'll be the best seat in the house for any spectator.

Got me a fancy licence with my photo on it as well.

It's all coming together...

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Ergo for Earth Hour

Played ring in for TeamMONASH in a Future Spark attempt today. An hour on the ergo pumping watts into storage to power the Earth Hour concert on Saturday.

That's a team of five, when we were meant to have ten to rotate through the four bikes. On mtb's we kinda ran out of gears but an hour on the ergo is an hour on the ergo and I still don't like it. Must be why I just sold my windtrainer on ebay...

With half a team and a ten minute computer dropout we nearly took top spot. So if you're bored sometime this week and can round up a few mates go steal the number one step yourself...but take an ipod or similar device as tunes are not provided.

PS. Anyone have a contact in Milan that would be willing to house me for a week? Plans kinda fell through.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

2009 Oceania Championships

Click that for the vid. Travelling company was the Peacock family this weekend and James pulled out the win in the Juniors. A very entertaining race from the sidelines with the top 5 separated by a minute. Understandable that he neglected the fact that my bike and kit was locked in the car while he carried the keys (and not his mobile) around seeing the sights of Thredbo post race. A little birdie must have whispered something in his ear though as he remembered with 45 minutes to spare and my worry was over.

Having never earnt a UCI point in my life before I found myself somehow sitting third row on the grid next to Dylan Cooper. Jokes were had as to how the rankings had been done but I certainly wasn't the one complaining. The gun went and the Tahitian rider in front of me was obviously experiencing that kind of start speed for the first time as I almost rode straight into the back of him before making my way around and latching onto the field mid pack. That was the end of anything resembling my being competitive though. As expected the combination of altitude and sickness was making breathing tough on a course that never seemed to reward all the climbing that was being done, not to mention being the course from hell for a back that hadn't been in a riding position for three weeks.

Long story short I kept the climbing smooth, stretched the back whenever possible and let the brakes go on the descents while watching the time gap to the leaders blow out. Knowing I was only a couple of minutes from being lapped by a flying Dan McConnell I upped the pace a touch to ensure I was in front of any nearby riders when that happened and hoped that it left me in a position to earn those 20 uci points.

Results are up and show me in 27th place. I believe 26th to give 20 uci points. The good news is I'm told that Under 23 and Elite riders have seperate points which puts me in 17th and points to spare. If not then I plan on visiting a couple of other races prior to the World Cup experience so hopefully I can pick up the remaining few then. If not then the original plan comes into play...I'm going to watch the Offenburg and Houffalize World Cups! How cool is that?

Some pics thanks to Russ Baker...very white eh.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Country Air

Was pretty hard to swallow this view as I sucked in some fresh Jindabyne air this morning. Spent some quality verandah time building the bike while taking it all in. I'm told that's Thredbo straight ahead, doesn't seem that high. I'm sure that the combo of a cold and altitude will make it quite a task to race tomorrow though.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Travel Begins

Sitting at the airport munching a chicken, pesto and salad sandwich while testing out the blogging capabilities of my phone prior to europe. The good and bad happenings are tied at one all. Stuffed up the flight bookings and had to purchase a new one...bad. Cafe chick liked me and i scored a buy one get one free cookie...good. Oh yeah, yesterday was the first day i've been well enough to ride since Tassie. So the total saddle time in preparation for oceanias stands at one hour. At least i'll be fresh.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


I felt a few days off were in order, obviously they were as the body decided to crash. Plenty of fluids, fresh food and the makings of an echinacea junky will hopefully have me back on the bike at full tilt come Oceanias the weekend next. The hope is for 20 UCI points, which mean I can pin on a number instead of playing spectator in Euroland next month.

Less bike time has meant some photo time. A gallery of bits I need to get rid of before heading OS, details to follow but if you're interested in anything let me know.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

The Garage Re-Opens

I board the big bird in the sky in under four weeks. Unfortunately the Aussie Dollar barely buys half a Euro now so it's time to raise some more funds. Keep your eye's on Grover's Garage over the next week as more stock arrives. First up is my fixie which will just be gathering dust so needs to go.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Bush Mechanics

I can't lay claim to this first hand, rather it was shown to me by Justin at Rollin'. Work is sometimes monotonous, it's things like this that keep the game interesting. Apparantly this customer left their bike to have a tube replaced saying he'd repaired the original and didn't know why it was still leaking.

Upon removal it was discovered that the 'repair' consisted of wrapping a stock standard crepe bandage around the tube...ten points for trying though.

National Round 5

Hobart's Dirt Devils hosted the National Series Finals last weekend. Results are up already. Sean and I made the trip and elected the lesser used boat as our travel option in conjunction with Simon and the Flood boys who had accomodation sorted for all of us.

Welcome to sunny Tasmania, the view upon arrival was less than stellar after a suboptimal night trialling alternatives to the oceanview recliner for some quality shuteye.

Making good time to Hobart including some L-plate hours for Sean we kitted up, grabbed a number and did some laps before heading south for the hour drive to our accomodation. Ninety minutes later and still a way off the decision was made, time to turn around, scrap that accomodation and hope we could find something in Hobart.

Calling ahead to try and find a place with some vacancies our luck turned and we didn't have to book a place. Gen turned lifesaver and offered up some vacant beds with Team Torq Nutrition fifteen minutes ride from the course. Upon arrival I had a very fitting little friend on my bed. With that we head to race day.

The hope was to turn that 303 into a 302 and with a little luck a 301 by the end of the day to finish out the series. Getting the holeshot as I've done in three of the four rounds I've attended things were going to plan on a course that didn't allow much passing. The one section of extended fireroad was through the start/finish and feed zone. First time through and we all looked to a roadie strongman wearing Praties kit. As expected he made his move and we all forgot about the top step.

We were down to a bunch of four with everyone trying their hand to get away over the next two laps before I got a move to stick and a gap opened. Unfortunately for me the one rider that had been dropped early in the cat and mouse games was the unranked rider I needed to occupy a position between myself and the others to guarantee a move up the rankings.

Up the final climb the two chasing were out of sight so I was able to descend risk free to cross the line second. Damien and Sean had never lost sight of each other the whole race with Sean winning out in the end to take the final podium spot and the series overall win. The good news for me was the extra gap to Damien meant I snuck into second overall. Sean summed it up pretty well post race, 'Welcome to Elite'.

Still a rather successful weekend for this little travelling party.

Well except for the boat. If wasting time in quarantine and a terrible nights sleep floats your boat then you may love it though. Us, we'll be flying next time.