Saturday, September 29, 2007

tune in next time for, "a racehorse's life is always on track" or "Those who throw dirt are sure to lose ground."

i surprisingly got some comments about not updating this thing in a timely fashion; please excuse the delay. i'd say i'm busy, but the truth is i'm just lame.

"a racehorse's life is always on track"

Thursday was the last points race. Mike was nice enough to let me hop in his car on the way down, which i was very happy about because the car i am sharing with my roommate is in a sad state at the moment. (hang in there little suzuki swift!)

I wish I could give some insight about my last track race of 2007, but to be honest it seems like forever ago and I remember very little. But I will do my best. It went like this. Tor would sprint really fast around everyone. Then the pace would drop. Then one of the ladies would attack and get a gap. Then one of the ladies would bridge the gap and get the field back up to whomever attacked. Then Tor and Wyatt would sprint around us. This happened for a few laps and Julie told me "let the men bridge that, then counterattack!"- so I resumed my favorite role as wheelsucker and hoped the men would do the work. Julie was very smart this race, cause the women would do all this work bridging gaps, and then the men would get the points. Julie did a great job of getting points each lap, and although I wasn't getting a ton of points, it was good for me to stay close to Julie and just see how she does stuff. The second half of the race was a lot better for me, once I heeded Julie's advice. I could tell I really lost my snap in the sprints this past week, although I felt pretty strong otherwise. I took one win that was pretty good, and had a good breakaway the last five laps, and got a couple points here or there. Of course, there were some sprint laps I was dumb in-- but that is bound to happen. I ended up with 4th, but it wasn't close. I needed to have gotten more points in the first half of the race. After the race, Julie was really awesome and gave me a bunch of pointers on how race smarter and how to position myself better. It was really helpful. Then I had some of Jen's yummy cookies, drank a tecate, and watched maurice and nole tear it up in the B race. The B race was FAST and exciting! Thursday points races have been a blast-- and I definitely think I have gotten better in my position, smarts, and fitness. Thanks Larry for putting these on- they have been great!
there is me eager to start at the front.

...oh yes, and i almost forgot-- although i neglected to post, i did measure my quads and they are 60.75cm

"those who throw dirt are sure to lose ground"

michiko convinced me to give cross a try. what she did not know, is what an uncoordinated clutz i am. the reason i have taken a liking to the track is it is very easy. all you have to do is pedal. you don't even have to turn. so if you can just suck it up that your legs are burning and your lung is going to rip out of your chest- you are fine. yeah, i am sure there is some skill...but it is mostly just learning to ride in a straight line and being gracious and looking over your shoulder, like when you are parallel parking. cross is a lot of skill and super hard! i have ridden my bike three times.

there is me and my bike that is too nice for me.

Ride #1
-- last sunday she took me out to the marin headlands. this was my first time riding in the dirt ever. i didn't ride a bike as a kid, so when i say ever, i really mean it. i was very lucky and got a great deal on a beautiful used sycip bike...but i definitely feel like a lame-o who is riding something about 100x better than what she can handle. it is certainly true that i got an amazing deal, but i am very self-conscious of banging up such nice equipment. and i am definitely banging it up.

anyway, i think michiko was really worried when we first went out. first, she tried to teach me to dismount. but i was so uncoordinated, she made me start trying to coast with one foot. i couldn't do this at all and was wobbling all over the place. i couldn't even coast like a skooter! i think she was worried with what she got herself into. i am a slooow learner. but i eventually could do this, then she had me kick my leg back like a ballerina. then over the seat. then dismount. finally, she let me bike over to the headlands. Eeek! downhills are supposed to be a time when you have fun and recover from going uphill. but i think i was so nervous going downhill, that my pulse was even higher. luckily i made it back with just one gnarly bruise that has been getting bigger and darker by the day.

Ride #2- having ridden my bike once, michiko thought it was a good idea for me to do the fairfax lion "race". i put that in quotes, cause it was not really a race for me. after having shat my pants and nearly suffering an anxiety attack, michiko left me, patted me on the head, and told me: "that is what helmets are for." i attempted to ride the course. i fell coming up to the first barrier...then another time on my "warm-up" lap...which was pretty snails pace. lots of people were very nice to me and tried to give me points, but i was just trying to stay upright, not go fast. a couple people even told me "you do track, you'll do fine." the amount of cross over between track and cross is....well, i would say 5%. (i.e. both use bikes).

well, anyway, the race started and i let everyone else roll out and then i started. i lowered my expectations during my warm-up and thought just finishing and seeing what these races are like would be the best idea. i really didn't want to get in anyones way who was racing. i knew i'd fall a bunch, so i wanted to do that alone and not mess up someone's race. i was very good about hopping off the course when getting lapped 1 (or 2) times.

as for the dismounting i practiced, i only did it about 3 times the entire course. i needed a lot of mental prep to dismount, so that one in the field was the only one i could do. as for all the other times i got off the bike, i did it the old fashioned way...and i was also panzy and got off the bike and ran up just about every hill. as for the actual running, that was FUN and i was good running up those hills. i was sprinter when i ran track, so i know how to pick up my knees....the key to running fast uphill! but everything else pretty much sucked.... the getting off the bike, getting on the bike, and going down the hill. that downhill was a bitch....someone told me to put my butt off the seat, so i did that once and then rammed my pelvic bone into the back of the seat four times. i don't think i can have children any longer. that is fine. i didn't want them anyways.

everyone tells me cross hurts so bad you want to die. i can't say i ever felt like that. mostly cause i can't figure out how to ride the damn i couldn't ride fast and just had to ride within my means, which at my skill level was a snail's pace. had i gone any faster i would have eaten it more times than i did. thankfully, that wasn't too many. i'd say 2 times during the "race" plus 2 times during the warm-up.

Ride #3- Sunday, i went to the albany landfill with michiko to practice some more. i ate it twice. once was me being dumb and trying to take a sharp turn. the second time was me also being dumb and getting my leg stuck on my saddle while dismounting, then falling over. when i got up, i looked at my rear wheel and saw some dirt clump. i said: "that isn't helping anything" and wiped it off. then michiko said: "is that shit?" i smelled it, and yes, indeed it was dog shit. i screamed "aaaack" We threw our bikes down and ran across a field to where our water bottles were sitting...michiko squirted some cytomax and chain lube on my hands to disinfect. as for other highlights other than the dog shit, i tried to ride in the sand, but that only worked for approximately 2 pedal strokes til i'd fall.

as for the bruise count, well it is quite numerous. it definitely looks like someone is beating me. i have TWELVE bruises just on my left leg. there are lots more on my right leg (including one my neighbor said "was the size of Minnesota!" it is a good thing i have designated october to be the month of self-loathing.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

yay! thursday points!

bike racing is so much fun!!! absence does make the heart grow fonder; i was sick last week, so didn't race. anyway, i trained really well the last two weeks for this race; let's just say i was really rested!

hanan came down with me for her first thursday night. on the ride down, she asked me what a points race was, so i did my best to explain the madness of points racing and lap ups and lap downs. anyway, i should have just told her to be properly geared. poor girl started the race in an 81", so i don't think she had as much fun as she would have. but she'll be back next week.

i just had a blast racing. it was really fast, then slow, then fast. crazy race. the first 3 or so sprints i didn't go for points, but then started going for points. i kept getting passed right at the line, so i got a lot of 4ths, 5ths (no good!), and maybe a 3rd. i was getting better, though, at being in good position going into the last lap...not so great at my sprinting to close the deal, but getting better. nevertheless, i was pretty happy i was contesting a lot of the sprints. my night was really made by one awesome move around lap 25. me, julie, and some other guy had a small gap on the field. with one to go, julie was on the guys wheel and i edged up close to julie (on her right), boxing her in. then at the 200 line i jumped for a long sprint, came around the guy. i don't know if i got 1st or 2nd on that one, but it was pretty awesome move- cause julie told me so- and i believe everything she says cause she is awesome! anyway, the sprint on lap 20, i totally led the whole pack out like a ninny, then got pooped and totally missed *the break* of the night. my last 3 sprints i wasn't really ever in a place to contest cause i wasn't with the break, but i did get some good practice bridging up. i have also perfected the art of finding the big guys and tucking behind them to get their drafts. (why don't people like racing with men? you get a sweet draft and can usually sucker some dude into bridging up for you. hahaha.) well, all in all, a fun fun night.

when i came home, i measured the quads and, despite me not doing much the last week i grew- now at 61cm. i am guessing that is not muscle growth- but what can you do?

Thursday, September 13, 2007

no race, but i will measure

I am a bit sick, so I didn't go to Hellyer for the points race tonight. That e-card really says it all. I think I was so tired from Saturday and Sunday that I was a hotbed waiting to incubate any virus. Lucky for me, lots of people were sick at my work, so by Monday night I felt crappy. But I am starting to feel better after my 16 hour sleep marathon! My pee looked like lemon-lime Gatorade when I awoke cause I slept for so long without even getting up for a sip of water.

Well, I measured, and my quads are holding strong at 60.25. I think that they will start to shrink pretty soon as I stop doing sprint workouts. I wonder how much they'll shrink....this will be very interesting.

I think I will re-cap some of my season goals. Thinking back to last September, I have made great accomplishments. Below are some of the goals that I achieved, and a couple I did not.
  • Ride no-hands. This took me a VERY long time to learn because I have a bad sense of balance. I was very, very happy when I could finally do this and told everyone I knew.
  • Get up out of the saddle. Yes, that sounds dumb. But 1 year ago I couldn't get out of my saddle at all while riding. Now I know how to do this while going up hills (which can make going up hills a lot easier!) and while sprinting. This took a long time to figure out, but happy I can finally do it.
  • Drink my water while riding. Last summer I was in a constant state of dehydration, so it is very good I can grab my water bottle, now from both cages.
  • Walk my bike by only pushing the saddle. I feel totally bad-ass now that I can even go around turns.
  • Ride the rollers! This also took a very long time. I spent a long time with my roommates holding my handlebars. But now I go for 35 minutes without bumping the door frame.
  • Finish a race (without crashing).
  • Tuck on the downhills. Michiko taught me how to do this. Except I am a pussy and keep my hands near the breaks, not on top of the bar like her.
  • Try out the track.
  • Of course, there are a bunch of other things I learned, but these were my actual goals last September.
Some of my goals I did not accomplish. These are:
  • Ride a century. My first attempt ended in the I still have yet to ride the full 100.
  • Corner not like a grandma. I don't think I corner like a grandma anymore, but it is still something I need to work on a lot more, so I am not checking it off the list yet.
  • Take off my coat while riding. I can go no hands, take off arm warmers in a unique fashion with one hand on the handlebars, but I still can't take off something over my head.
  • Learn to descend well. I am 10 times better than I was, but still need to work on this a lot more.
In addition to the ones above, I have a couple I am going to add:
  • Try cross and riding in the dirt!
  • Learn to ride on the black line on the track, even when i am going really, really fast.
  • Learn to do standing starts better-- so I don't skip my wheels and swerve all over the place.
  • Do one of the motorpacing sessions.
  • Drink water during a race. This is important. I still haven't done this. (Well, you don't at track races. It is no biggie for a 40 minute crit... but, that Berkeley Hills road race was a long race with no water.)
  • Ride the rollers no hands. Maybe that is a bit ambitious, but I want to try.
  • Figure out better positioning in the crits
  • Go to LA and ride the velodrome there. I think they have women's only days on that track and it'd be fun to road trip there to try it out!
  • (I'd also like to try out those arrow bar things-- just cause I think it'd be neat to try them.)
Of course, I would like to generally improve and get faster, but I try to make skills my concrete goals because that seems more meaningful to me improving as a bike rider. Corner and descending, though, is certainly my #1!

Monday, September 10, 2007

day 2 - track championship

when i woke up sunday morning, i felt so bad it was hard to make my way to the bathroom. i really felt like shit and was wondering how the hell i was going to ride my bike. anyway, i made it down and once i started warming up, i felt a little better, but not too much better.

200TT: i was hoping to break 14 in this cause i was pretty close to that a couple of times. i figured with the fancy wheels i would. nope. 14.06. just a tiny bit faster than before. i got some good advice, though, about the TT. 1) ride the black line. i was apparently swinging wide in the pole. and 2) either a) start my acceleration a lot earlier so i am at top speed at the line, or b) jump hard coming down the bank. i didn't do either of those. 3) use my arms and upper body more so i am pulling on the bike. Good advice.... then we started our match sprints. Only 6 of us.

#1- My first one was against Courtney. My goal of all the match sprints was to keep the speed high. I kept the speed up, jumped into turn 1, and held off for the win. That meant I made the semi-finals.

#2- My second one was again Annabelle. Annabelle is really fast and really good at tactics. She came in 3rd at Masters Nats! I knew I had nothing against her, so I thought I'd try to play to my strength, that being a long sprint. I was happy when I drew inside position-- cause then I figured I could jump early and maybe hold it off. But right off the start, she swooped down and took it and starting moving me up to the wall. A lot of times people slow down to try and get behind, but I knew this would be a mistake for me because of my jump, so I just tried to ramp the speed up. I wanted to hold my position where it was and not get moved further up to the fence- she tried moving me up, but I didn't budge and we knocked arms. I don't know if this was bad form of me or not. Anyway, I kept the speed really high on the back stretch and around curve 1 or 2. I really wanted to jump, but she was holding me tight right at her hip--so if I accelerated, she move up, and I didn't want to get slower cause I'd mess up my jump for sure. Anyway, she went down into the pole after turn 2 and I was right on her and after turn 3 I started to come around, but I was lame and swung WAY to far out, so by the time we were out of turn 4, we were sprinting to the line, and it was really close, but she had won. Had I been better about not swinging so far up, I *may* have had a shot at winning that, but regardless, it was a good race and I was pretty happy to finish so close to her.

#3- Now I was racing for 3rd place against Amanda. It was best 2 out of 3. Amanda and I are pretty similar sprinters, so this was going to be interesting. Amanda is pretty crafty and really likes to pin people up and shove a bit, but I just held my position strong and kept the speed high again. Just out of turn one, I was a tiny bit ahead of her, so I took that opportunity to cut down hard into the pole and sprinted it out for the win. It was a good move, I gapped pretty well, and held it off.

#4- I really didn't want to do another sprint (it was best 2 out of 3), so I wanted to win this one bad. This time I got the lower position and held it. Amanda got right on my wheel coming off so I couldn't pin her and she was just riding it good. I did some of the swurvy business trying to shake her off. But no dice. I figured I would do it a couple more times. On turn 4 I swerved up and instead of coming down normal, I popped it and jumped hard and started in for a long ass 1.25 lap sprint. I dug hard and got the win. I was pretty happy with this one.

I was pretty happy with my match sprints, and definitely won them on speed and not tactics- cause I have none with the match sprints. But, this was a lot of fun and I got a little better throughout the day.

me, mary ellen, and annabelle

Scratch Race: I no more than rolled around the warm-up circle a couple times, put my bike down, than they called the women's scratch race. Luckily, Matt made it 12 laps; I think he felt bad for me and Amanda. I was still exhausted from my long sprint. We rolled up to the rail. It was only 4 of us -- me and Amanda, really tired from our recent sprint, Mary Ellen, and Mary. I was so tired, I was just going to try and suck as much wheel as possible and never pull. I didn't feel one ounce bad about this because Mary hadn't done an event since the team time trial in the morning, and I just finished my 4th match sprint less than 3 minutes before the start of this race. Things were pretty mellow. Mary attacked some and I'd make Mary Ellen real her in. Amanda and I were just catching wheels. With 4.5 to go, Mary attacked hard. I came around Amanda to try and catch it, but her and Mary Ellen had gapped pretty big at that point. Amanda and I started taking pulls and keeping the pace high-- I figured we'd be racing for third...kinda like our 3rd match sprint. Anyway, with 1.5 to go I saw that Mary and Mary Ellen were getting all cat and mousey fighting for position up track-- and me and Amanda were barreling around. The bell rang and we were really close to them. Everyone in the stand were cheering for us, and silly Mary and Mary Ellen were way up track with no clue! It was pretty awesome. Anyway, we come out of turn 2-- start to pass Mary and Mary Ellen -- at this point I had taken over a lap pull and was dying, so I was hoping Amanda was gonna come around me there and take the win, but she stayed on my wheel. They see us start to pass, then they jump hard down the track and start sprinting to the finish. They still ended up winning (Mary Ellen first, Mary second), I came in third, and Amanda fourth -- but it was still pretty awesome. Just shows to never give up and dog it during a race, cause you never know what is going to happen in front of you.

me, mary ellen, and mary

Well, I was pretty happy with day 2. The turn out was really low, so that sucked, but I rode pretty well and improved, and wasn't nearly as tired as I thought I was that morning. All in all, I was pretty happy with this weekend. I think I improved a lot from when i started track racing in late June, and now know more concretely what I need to work on for next year. Track is a total blast and I hope more women show next year for the races! (4 people in a scratch race at the state championship meet is pathetic!) Can't wait for more people to show up for these races next year!

see, look how we all love each other at the track!

photo digest - championship day 1

these were all taken by mike and already posted on his website, but this is mostly for my mom. hi mom!

i don't know when this picture was taken, but i will guess during one of the TTs. observe how well i am riding on that black line! HA!

thanks peter!

what up black castelli jersies and big quads?

i feel like a big dork

these are from the beginning of the points race

also near the beginning

who knows what the hell i'm doing up there.

me, about to commit suicide (i.e. take my solo flyer)

suicide, in process. awaiting getting caught. look how nicely i ride that black line!

me struggling to hold on to shelley's wheel after she caught me. also trying not to projectile vomit all over her fancy disc wheel.

chase group caught me and i could now suck wheel for a little while

until i decided to start taking pulls with them. wow, i am so great at riding that black line.

mary, much better at that black line business.

alicia, much more ready for the team sprint than me. why did i do the two laps again?

this is just an awesome picture of peter.

hot quads. ow ow.

me and jen warming up for the 3k. saddle problems?

me and julie, warming up for the keirin. saddle problems?

me and mary, warming up for some race. saddle's great! this really explains a lot about my failed relationships in the past year.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

pretty tired--- track championship, day 1

as i was driving down the 880 this morning, my least favorite highway because of the awful road quality (at least in oakland- i always think i blew my tire), i was giving myself mad props for being so good and remembering everything and packing the car the night before. then i was thinking about setting up my stuff, and then i realized i definitely forgot my trainer. michiko is a lot of things, but today we will add "clutch hitter" to the list for bringing her trainer for me. Aces.

Warmup: Like most races, the day started off with a warm-up. As I got on my bike and started pedaling, I realized how easy it was to pedal! I mean- really, really, really easy... it was definitely those pimpin' wheels fred let me borrow. i never imagined in all my days that wheels could really make riding so much easier. I was quite excited to see what I could do in the next event.

500TT: I was quite excited for this, cause last time I did this it was the timed events day, my first "race". I was pretty happy that day, and I think got just under a 44. I was hoping to be in the 43s today. Well, I had a really terrible start. My rear wheel was skipping all over the place. I got it together, but it kept skipping out of the turns, which kinda through me off. The wheels were so much lighter, I wasn't putting my weight far enough back...usually in the starts I have my weight far forward, but with such light wheels this is not a good idea because I was riding like popcorn. Anyway, I was pretty happy with my speed and that I held it the whole time; I think I was very consistent and didn't slow down at the end. My time ended up being a 42.18 - so way better than I expected. I think this was 5th or 6th. This makes me happy cause I think if I can practice with those wheels more, and improve my start, I can probably get in the 41s- which would be awesome!

3000TT: Yep. This is hard. I couldn't hear my lap splits at all, so I just tried to hold it as fast as possible. I don't really know what to say about this event, other than it is a suffer-fest for sure. My time was a 4:35. I don't no if this is really bad or not, but definitely something to work on. I came in last here, but I totally expected to cause everyone else was much faster than me. This race certainly takes lots of practice with knowing your lap if I do this again, I will want to practice more so I can get my pacing better. But thanks to Mike for yelling at me-- it really helped me go harder!

Keirin: I was kinda tired when this race started from the 3k-- I didn't have much time at all. I really wanted to do well in this, so I tried to think of a race plan. There were 5 people in my heat, and all of them were really, really fast. Ideally, sitting 2nd or 3rd would be best. But Julie Granshaw and Mary Maroon were in the heat- and they know how to race well and fight and hold position, so I figured the best I'd be able to get was 4th wheel if I didn't get the motor. It is really hard coming around that many people at that speed. So, my plan was to take the motor, and expect I'd get passed by 1 or 2 people...and hope that 3 bike lengths is too much to make up, and I could hold on for 3rd. Well, this is just what happened! Peter ramped us up to 30mph... I dragged the field around, Mary FLEW by me going into turn 3-- whoa she is faaast! Then Julie came around me in the homestretch. I was fading fast from the long sprint, but thankfully held onto 3rd....just barely. but, happy all worked out. Next year, I want to practice not being on motor and braving the race.

Points Race. 40 laps, sprint 10. At this point, I was pretty tired. Also, the field was only 5 people! And super fast people. I was hoping to holdon for dear life. Surprisingly, it wasn't too fast. It was really weird doing a points race with only 4 sprints. On Thursdays we did every ten laps-- but the races were so long and bigger fields. With such a small field and short race with sprints so sparingly, it was kinda hard. Things were on the slow side, would speed up for sprints, but there was such a big distance between points that no one really wanted to take a flyer cause the distance of the points was so far apart. (At least, that is what it seemed like.) I started to get dropped, caught back on. At that point, Mike told me power through cause everyone was sitting high up track. I figured I was already in 4th or 5th place, so I'd just take a flyer, figuring I'd get caught in a lap. Nope. I had a big gap and everyone was sitting back not catching me. Weird- I just kept going around and around, wondering what the hell was going on. Well, I find out later that Mary Maroon totally had my back and was apparently blocking big time. Anyway, 5 laps of sucking wind later (thanks Mike for yelling so much!) Shelley caught me. I got on her wheel for two or so laps-- it was pretty awesome to ride her wheel and I felt quite bad I couldn't pull, but I was toast from my flyer. I got dropped by her, came in 2nd on lap three. Then hung out a couple more laps till Amanda and Mary caught me. We took pulls through to the end. I didn't sprint that last one cause Mary was the one in front of me and I owed her big time. Anyway, fun race...but tiring to be alone sucking wind for so long especially after a long day.

Done? Not yet! Alicia and I had a team race! What up O-town?!

Team Sprint- Well, we hadn't practiced at all, and it was quite obvious. She has a good start and great jump, and I was wobbly and all over the place and accelerating like a sissy. I finally got on her wheel, but it was obvious I was toast from the day before cause I was having a hard time drafting. She pulled off and I did my best to hold it, but I certainly wasn't on top of my game. We were definitely the antithesis of smooth-- and it must have hurt to watch how I riding her wheel...but, a good opportunity to try it and next time we'll definitely practice more!

Well, I am tired and ready to do it again tomorrow! But it was a blast and i definitely learned a lot and now know what i need to work on. It was quite an honor to be out there riding with so many fast woman. Also cool was how many people were out there to cheer! Major thanks to Glen for being my great holder/pusher and for all the tips and help throughout the day. Also thanks to Fred for yelling at me and Michiko for the trainer and chocolate cake! You two are the best! Thanks also to Mike and Sabine for being such great cheers and letting me use your tent for shade. Also great to see Rick, Sarah, Angela, and Doug!

...Ready for another ass whoopin' tomorrow. (That was for you, Michiko.) [apologies for this being a very boring, un-funny post. i am too tired to be witty right now.]

Thursday, September 06, 2007

quads, wheels, blah blah blah

it is thursday. no points racing for me tonight. i am bummed cause i feel like racing, but i am trying to rest for the weekend ass-whooping session. but, thursday doesn't just mean points racing day, it also means it is quad measuring! 60.25 I'm back, baby!

just a day more until track states. i am very excited! i figure cause i am new and don't know what i am doing, i am just going to try every event.

my wheel sponsor really came through BIG TIME. fred is letting me borrow his zipp 440 wheels! ahhhh!!!! i am very nervous cause they look expensive and totally bling bling. i just hope i don't fall and crack them. i am kind of scared riding something so nice. but, it is also very exciting cause i always look at people's fancy wheels and wonder what it feels like to ride on them, and this weekend i guess i'll find out. hopefully these wheels will mean i will only get lapped 2 times instead of 3.

i keep fred's name on my jersey cause he is my awesome wheel sponsor.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

mary maroon is the quad queen! oh yeah, and friday night racing....

thanks to sabine we did some more quad measuring on friday night. of particular note is mary maroon. get this--

that is unreal and awesome! Mary had Mark Paton measure his quads and he was really impressive, but not like mary maroon impressive. she had him by 2cm. (he rang in at 63cm) in addition to having big quads, mary is also running for board of directors at the velodome. i read her campaign statement this morning. it was an okay statement; however, it didn't mention her quad size. i have taken it upon myself to make a new campaign statement and poster for her. it is below (included in the poster is the below picture and caption)

vote mary maroon: 65cm.

"these are mary's 65cm quads. next to her is mike hernandez, also running for BOD. his quads are significantly smaller as you can see, but he's a pretty nice guy and kinda fast none-the-less."

we also measured another person running for the board, jim ryan. he rang in at a 58cm. he's kinda young, so we'll cut him some slack, as he has lots of potential for future quad growth, and i guess there are other attributes that will make people good board representatives.

mary's 65cm in action!

oh yeah, so other than quad measuring i also raced my first friday night last night. it was a ..... humbling experience. i was planning on racing with the masters. because i ride with fred so much, i was prepared for the mental challenge of racing with masters. masters are devious, but i am clued-in to their shanangans. what do i mean by shananagans??? let me share you a few stories of "masters tactics" that i discovered this previous year, while riding with fred.
  1. Fred stuck me on a 68" fixed gear all winter and then would yell at me why i couldn't keep up with him. It wasn't until two months later that I figured out different gear inches, and realized that he was riding high 70s/low 80s. Shanangans.
  2. To drop me, Fred likes to speed up through yellow lights in downtown Oakland, so I have to stop at the red and he can get a few blocks up on me.
  3. Another time Fred dropped me, he took me on some "short cut" or "back way" to the Oakland hills through Peidmont. It was 6:00am and it takes me awhile to warm-up. He pulled away from me purposely and darted around a few corners, leaving me lost in Peidmont for the next 20 minutes going up some really steep pitches trying to find my way out. When i finally caught up with him, I got yelled at.
  4. My favorite was another ride with Fred. I had really bad period cramps, and told him I wasn't feeling well so couldn't go hard. Fred goes "yeah, yeah yeah. rough night at work. we'll take it easy." All this time i see a sparkle in his eye and then hear him click down two cogs and start hammering it.
  5. Or the present day shananagans-a smirk comes across his face, "oh bethie i can't wait til this state meet is over and i ride with you in the hills and i will be able to kick your ass for three weeks until you get your climbing legs back." and this always follows with an evil laugh.
Tricky, those masters. So, I was mentally cued-in for the master's shanagans at the track. They are smart and devious. But I am sharp as a whip, so I was ready for trickery. However..... most everyone was in Trexeltown for masters I raced with the 3/4s instead. Next time, gadget. Next time.

Yeah, I will just say - friday night was faster than wednesday c group..... I don't know how exciting of a race report this will be, so i will keep it brief.

  • 12 Scratch Race- Hung on for dear life. Didn't get dropped until lap 10 and finished 1/4 lap behind the pack.
  • Miss n Out- Intelligently managed to box myself in and was the 4th person eliminated.
  • 7 laps to Win n Out- Serge, get dropped, bridge up. Repeat. Didn't get dropped for good until the big attack on lap 6 or 7. Then I just rode as hard as I could til they stopped ringing that bell.
  • 20 lap Points Race- Was with the pack until the first sprint. Just after the 1st sprint I had to work to get back up to the pack, stayed with them for a lap or so. Then there was another attack, I got dropped. But I bridged up again. Then it was the 2nd sprint and I got dropped again. Then I pulled some dude for the next 2 laps but made it back on the pack. (I was getting some good bridging practice) Then I was toast and there was another break and I tried to go with it, but was dropped approximately 2 pedal strokes into it. With 8 to go, I was pretty much TTing. I figured with was good practice TTing, so I just went as fast as I could and tried to stay steady. My big accomplishment was the field didn't lap me. That was actually really happy I didn't get lapped when I was by myself for 8 laps.

Last night I couldn't get on the attacks- maybe I was a bit sluggish from Thursday, but probably the attacks were a lot faster than I am used to and I just couldn't hang. I need to get better at accelerating a lot really fast and catching wheels quickly. Oh well, very good practice. I feel kind of pathetic for saying my big accomplishment of the evening was not getting lapped, but it is true. There were some fast people in the race and i was happy I didn't get lapped. Well, I wanted to have a hard workout last night, and I did that for sure.

Well, I believe that is that. 65cm?! unreal!