Sunday, April 30, 2006

Trans Iowa

Lindsay, Paddy, Steve and some other local guys drove down to Iowa this weekend to take part in the 2nd Trans Iowa race. Looks like it was a wet and sloppy affair. And after all that suffering, nobody won because nobody made it to the halfway point inside the time limit. But apparently Lindsay and Dallas got closer than anyone else. Check out the video here. Anybody want to try to go next year? According to Hal, Lindsay and Paddy are also talking about a race around Lake Manitoba. Should be fun in a masochistic sort of way. We might have to start making our races a little longer.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Dogfest on Tuesday

This Tuesday we will be leaving the familiar cozy confines of the F&H and venturing out into the cruel suburban world for the spring dogfest at Juan Eppstein's. Same deal as usual. But for those who don't know what "usual" means, here are some instructions from the dogfest czar himself:

For dogfest, bring dogs or reasonable facsimile, buns, drinks, munchies (peanuts, spits, etc.). I can supply condiments. Any drivers should bring extra lawn chairs and roasting stick.

I assume we will do some sort of group ride before hand. So meet at my place at 8:30 once again and we'll decide where to go from there, planning to arrive for the dogfest at around 10. Last time we rode out to NK to meet Darryl and Penner (or did Penner take the van?). Should we do that again?

Thursday, April 27, 2006

it's the truth ruth

fixie is where it's at

(take note of the headline)

ride report

dr.h and i enjoyed (if that is the right word for it) an early morning ride to lockport and back this morning. we started at 5:15 and we were finished before 8:00 so i could shower and change before my reference desk duties at 8:30. i hope to be doing this on a weekly basis, look for emails inviting those interested in doing some early morning road rides.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

alleycat race results

by all accounts it was a well received event, but i'll leave the report of the race to the participants.

8 riders showed up for the race: penner, james f, aiden, darryl, jon , john, juan and chris. times and placements were as follows:

james f: 56:30 (+2:00 minute penalty) = 58:30
aiden e: 58:10 (+2:00 minute penalty) = 1:00:10
darryl: 1:00:08 (+2:00 minute penalty) = 1:02:08
jon g: 1:05:09 (+2:00 minute penalty) = 1:07:09
john k: 1:05:12 (+2:00 minute penalty) = 1:07:12
juan e: 1:05:30 (+6:00 minute penalty) = 1:11:30
chris h: 1:10:10 (-12:00 minute bonus) = 58:10: (winner)
penner: DQ

1st place - chris h: bottle of wine and $20
2nd place - james f: loaf of velo artisan bread
last place - juan e: loaf of velo artisan bread
1/2 of collected entry fee - penner: $20

here is the manifest the particpants had to complete:

1. Pick up package from Geez Magazine Headquarters; instructions for delivery location will be on package.

(the package was an empty six, which they had to deliver to the Fox and Hound beer vendor for $.60 and verification card)

2. Globe Theater (Portage Place) – Who is the director/producer of the movie U-Carmen e-Khayelitsha?

answer: Mark Donford-May

3. City Hall – What does the red plaque on the South East corner of City Hall commemorate?

answer: Winnipeg General Strike

4. What is the make of the bike hanging on the wood-fired brick oven at Velo Artisan Bread (293 Carpathia)?

answer: CCM

5. St Boniface Basillica – Find Louis Reil’s gravestone; what is the exact date of his death?

answer: November 16, 1885

6. Exchange – What company occupies room 706 of the Silpit Building (70 Arthur St)?

answer: Sofa Logic

7. Osborne Village – What is the phone number of the Medical Clinic located at 478 River Avenue?

answer: 453-4310

8. St. Boniface Hospital – What is the name of the Research Centre building?

answer: G Campbell MacLean Building

9. Forks – What are the hours of operation for the Explore Manitoba Centre?

answer: 10-6

10. Finish – Fox and Hound

2:00 minute penalty for every mistake on your manifest; more than 4 mistakes disqualifies you from the race.

11. BONUS RUN (-12:00 minutes): Go to Kenaston Wine Market, ask for AJ and get his middle name (1855 Grant).

answer: Kampeas

Monday, April 24, 2006

the race is on

the course has been mapped and we're good to go for tomorrow. remember, you need a pack, lock and pen. the last post by chris, attesting to his riding skills, bodes well for the other participants in the race. see you at dr h.'s @ 9:00.

rider down

Now that the snow is all gone, we can go fast again. But watch out for loose gravel around those corners. Took one a bit too wide this morning, and caught a bit of winter sand. Boom. Have a bit of road rash on my knee and hip and my elbow is banged up. But it's the missing chunk of my pinkie that hurts the most. Doesn't hurt enough, though, to keep me from racing tomorrow. Can't wait. It should be fun.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Floyd holds on

Floyd Landis is a certified badass. Tom Danielson can really climb. Last year he took over a minute out of Floyd on this same climb. But this year he couldn't shake Floyd. They attacked and counter-attacked each other all the way to the finish. While Danielson took the stage win, Floyd didn't concede any time and so keeps his 4 second lead heading into tomorrows final stage. Barring disaster, he should be able to hold win his third straight stage race. Can't wait for July. See the full report here.


To help everyone get prepared for Tuesday's messenger race, an article on Pittsburgh Alleycat races courtesy of the Bike Blog:

Pittsburgh Tribune Review, April 17, 2006
By Andrew Johnson

Gothic black bottoms, down-the-back dreadlocks and pierced septums don't exactly mesh with Lance Armstrong's image. Michael Camp, 29, of Rochester, is no Armstrong. He likes to combine his bike rides with a trip to the 31st Street Pub, a Strip District staple.

Camp recently downed a Presque Isle Pilsner before riding in The Caffeinator Alleycat, an organized bike race around the city. Other participants of the same race prepared for the aerobic test by smoking.

An "alleycat" is a bike messenger-style race, where renegade riders compete in an urban setting at breakneck, red-light defying speeds. It's one of the last remaining vestiges for these mostly male cyclists, whose profession is disappearing in a digital world where electronic court filings have replaced hard copy documents.

Ian Newell, 27, works for Quick Messenger on the South Side and said the trade is down in Pittsburgh.

Triangle Messenger Service lasted in the city nearly 20 years and grew to 25 bike messengers, before closing four years ago. Newell said he's one of four messengers at Quick, one of the city's bigger companies, among several small ones.

Brad Kenner, 27, of the South Side, said he biked briefly for Jet Messenger Service, Uptown, before quitting. He said after an eight-hour shift, he sometimes pulled in $40. Kenner blamed technology for the dwindling need for bike messengers.

With the Caffeinator Alleycat earlier this month, they brought the street spirit of maverick bicycle riding back to Pittsburgh -- at least for the day.

In this race, about 40 bikers tried to navigate the quickest way to seven coffeehouses -- downing beverages at each -- between Mellon Park and the Mexican War Streets.

Alleycat races, in general, are a nod to bike messengers' creativity in finding their city targets, organizer Brian Janaszek said. Janaszek said there are about six to eight of these under-the-radar local races a year. They are advertised in a magazine called Dirt Rag and on blogs.

The group at this alleycat was more Social Distortion than Tour de France.

Frank Elia, 41, brought eight members from BABE -- Beaver Area Bike Enthusiasts. Elia drank a Pabst Blue Ribbon and wore a utility man's blue workshirt that said "Kirk."

He said his group loves the fixed-gear bikes popular among messengers. The stripped-down bike, with super-skinny tires, gets him close to the road, producing a "Zen"-like ride.

"It's a pure feeling," Elia said.

A fixed-gear bike doesn't shift, not even into neutral, and a biker can't coast on one, even downhill. If the cyclist stops pedaling, a heels-over-head handlebar flip often follows. Some at the alleycat added brakes to their rigs, but many bike messengers slow down solely using their pedals.

Camp, a child therapist in Beaver County, has a burgundy-colored Schwinn Traveler steel frame, dating back to the time of President Reagan's near-assassination. The bike cost him $55 to construct.

Adam McNeish, 28, of Butler, crashed the single-speed party with something more elaborate. It still fit the category of low-tech, though. McNeish used a section of gray plastic outdoor floor mat for a super-long banana seat for his recumbent bicycle. He said the gray mat was better than the green mats with flowers on them. He had to look hard to find it.

A recumbent bicycle is the kind of extended low-rider bike one sits down in. It looks like something made for circus performers.

McNeish, after a wobbly start, went missing from the finishing line.

But Brian Rayburn, 20, a University of Pittsburgh sophomore, was there. Rayburn crossed the finish line first. He ditched his bike and ran into Beleza Community Coffeehouse on Buena Vista Street in the Mexican War Streets, practically heaving.

Rayburn was the only non-courier who said he aspired to be a full-time, bike messenger.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Tour de Georgia

Floyd's scorching form continues. Today he used his unique "praying Landis" time trial position to shred the field at the Tour de Goergia. The long course, with a steep climb and a technical descent, was perfect for Floyd. Only Tom Danielson was able to keep it close, finishing 4 seconds back. Floyd and Danielson now sit 1-2 in the GC, setting up a nice rematch on Saturday for the nasty uphill finish at Brasstown Bald. This is the place where Floyd lost his lead to Danielson last year. It is also the place where he had the much publicized run in with Lance Armstrong. Let's hope he'll leave with better memories this time around. A full report is available at

Also, check out the nice little profile of Floyd courtesy of Daily Peloton.

Spent last night getting the IRO set up. Back to grinding it out at 48 x 15. Should be able to hold your wheel now, Vic.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

fgbc messenger race - tuesday, april 25

okay, here is the skinny....

be at dr h's by 9:00 to receive your manifests. you have 5 minutes to study the manifest, and then the race is on. you need to have a pack, lock and pen. don't bring your good bike if you have one - remember this is a messenger race, and they don't ride the shiny or wear spandex (okay - orgininally I had the word latex in here , but that is way too kinky and wrong on so many levels - i think it was the image of dr h. in a chocolate latex suit that was just too disturbing...).

minutes april 18, 2006

a fine gathering.
five riders: g, jonny n, juan, dr. h, secretary
post ride additions: james, hal, president

the secretary met the riders half way at city hall, then we visited a trail in point douglas, saw the oldest house in winnipeg (it sure looks old) and examined the site for the new community centre in that area. next to the bike dump... not a place you'll likely stumble on by accident. we have committed to a visit there some time when it's open. next to the red river college princess campus where juan enthused over various elements of construction and design... finally, to headquarters.... oh, passed the fraternal order of eagles eyrie... now that's a clubhouse. columns, orange and blue neon, the works...

- first kids of mud event for the offspring of the president and secretary. lots of kids, lots of bikes. moderate to minimum volume of tears. the 8 & 9 yr olds practiced using the front brake on slight declines... the goal: the appropriate amount of "front".
- the most massive bike parts catalogue was brought by hal. incredible. bicycle seat for $550 anyone? bike armour for the president - priceless.
- hal laid the special fgbc bike deal terms on the table... certain persons are feeling a certain amount of heat over this opportunity. a deal so good it can't be published on this site.
- next week's meeting: the messenger race. stay tuned for more details. start time 9:00.
- week after: dog fest at juan's. sweet.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

bike for sale

it just sits in the basement any ways...

anyone interested in a 2001 Rocky Mountain Instinct? some changes to the bike include:

  • Avid mechanical disk brakes (the Magura Clara's sucked)
  • new bottom bracket last year (rode bike a handful of times since installation)
  • newer rings (rode bike a handful of times since installation)
  • newer cogs (rode bike a handful of times since installation)
  • replaced all bushings
  • maintenance on shocks (new seals and oil replacement)

I am going to do a compete tune-up on the bike including ordering some bushing for the rear shock (need because of a little play). It comes with SPD pedals if you want (sorry Penner, I will need these pedals for the bike, unless the purchaser does not want them - I have a set of older Ritcheys you can have for free).

price - I haven't decided yet; will know soon once I talk to James - but it will be very fair.

how do I pay for this mess - FGBC members are eligible for a wide variety of payment plans (O.A.C. - kidding), I will negotiate

this is a time limited offer before I put it up for sale on the MCA site, etc.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Bicycle Film Festival

Perhaps a trip to Minneapolis is in order sometime in July.

Thursday, April 13, 2006


Paris-Roubaix has got to be one of the most interesting one-day races around. No real climbs or anything, just cobblestones. And they can do a lot of damage, as George Hincapie can attest. Here are a few videos to check out: another highlight package from Velonews and a bunch more, including Hincapie's bike exploding, as well as the controversial train-crossing incident, courtesy of OLN.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

new bikes, new rider

Another good ride last night: Penner, Vic, Darryl, Jonny G, Jonny N, Chris, Hal (and Unger at the F&H). Highlights included a movie shoot, VJs, a tall bike sighting.

Penner and Vic debuted their new bikes at last night's ride. I believe Penner's bike has already made an appearance on the blog. Vic was moving too fast to get a picture, but here is one from the Devinci site:

Also making his riding debut last night was Jonny N. That makes it three Jonny's, by my count. Perhaps we should all change our names to Jonny. Kind of like the Ramones.

Looks like the race schedule is switching to Tuesdays. Makes a lot of sense. The messenger race is scheduled for April 25. Perhaps also a race/relay around the Leg. or the formal gardens next Tuesday.

Monday, April 10, 2006

sign of the times

Congrats to all of the participants of the LRL; if I don't start showing up to more races I'm going to start getting the rep of being a softie (maybe I already have a rep).

Planning on a ride at Bur Oak on Thursday evening - Wednesday night races start next week - anyone interested in trying the trails?

Also, going to try Grand Beach sometime next week in the afternoon and was wondering if anyone would want to try that as well?

Finally, from the wire services....

(KP International) A man aroused suspicion from a taxi driver taking him to the Durham Tees Valley Airport in northern England after the man requested the driver play music that sparked terrorism fear.
Harraj Mann was headed for the airport to catch his flight to London, when he asked to listen to The Clash's punk anthem 'London Calling' and began singing along.

Some of the lyrics from the song, including "War is declared and battle come down," along with Mann's demeanor made the driver apprehensive so he notified police who arrested Mann while he was on the plane. (Mann also reportedly sang along to Zeppelin's 'Immigrant Song' that includes the line "The hammer of the gods will drive out ships to new lands, to fight the horde, singing and crying: Valhalla, I am coming").
Mann was escorted from the plane, had his luggage searched and was put through rigorous questioning.
After a thorough check under the Terrorism Act, Mann was released, but his plane had already taken off.
"Safety is paramount and we respond to concerns from members of the public in the way they would expect us to," said a spokesperson for the Durham police.

"I was laughing about it," said Mann. "But all my mates are absolutely furious. It's just left me bemused."
Mann said, "I mean obviously the political climate these days is like walking on egg shells, but I mean there's caution and then there's taking it to the point where it's absurd and ludicrous."

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Louis Riel race report

Sweet little race this evening. Six racers showed up to honor admirable acts of political insurrection by taking part in the Louis Riel classic. A bit of a different format this time around. A 20 minute relay, doing laps around the ramps by the Louis Riel statue behind the Leg. Kenton got a significant gap off the start and he and Jonny G were able to maintain it for the rest of the race. They even threatened to lap Vic and Chris for a while, but were held off. Penner did not crash. But the yellow flag had to come out for Unger. His front brake cable broke and he nailed the cement wall virtually head on. His nerves were a bit frayed for a while, but fortunately there was no physical damage either to Unger or his bike. After the race resumed, the gaps all pretty much stayed the same for the remaining 15 minutes.

Final standings:

1) Kenton/Jonny G - 22 laps
2) Penner/Unger - 21 laps
3) Vic/Chris - 21 laps

This was of course preceded by a few rounds of knockdown. A bit different without ice, but still good fun.

Prizes (courtesy of president Penner) and post-race bullshit followed in my front yard.

Tuesday night ride is on again. Meet at my place at 8:30. F&H around 10pm.

Friday, April 07, 2006

the jersey redux

Last chance for comments.



Wednesday, April 05, 2006

ride report, next race

Nice turnout for the Tuesday night ride last night: Darryl, Jonny G, Unger, Vic, Hal, Chris. One minor incident involving a spontaneous dismount into the bushes, but nothing serious. This occured while previewing the course for the next race. And while my latest demonstration of bike-handling ineptitude did prompt some discussion, the course was deemed race worthy. The race will take place on Sunday at 9pm. Meet at my place around 8:30 if you want to ride over together. Otherwise, meet at the Louis Riel statue behind the Leg. Some sort of post-race gathering will take place somewhere. There may even be some prizes. Hal is working on an Alley Cat/Messenger race later in the month. Start memorizing your map of downtown Winnipeg and stay tuned for further details.

The jersey discussion is coming along nicely. We seem to have reached a decision about design basics. Waiting to hear back about some technical details concerning images. Hopefully that won't set us back too much. Perhaps the secretary can relay that info if and when it is received.

A flurry of bike-purchasing activity has taken place at Olympia recently. The formation of the next generation is apparently under way.

Official tally at the F&H: $903 spent so far, which translates into $135 in FGD. How close can we get to $200 before the spring ride? This is starting to feel like a fundraising drive.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Tusday night ride

Ride tomorrow. Meet at my place at 8:30. Estimated arrival at the clubhouse around 10pm. Where we go in between to be determined. Would be nice if some folks from the NK chapter could join in. If it's too far to ride the whole thing, drive up to here and ride from there.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

learning to ride all over again

natural cycle comes through and the green machine is now an it. the fixed learning curve is a not too steep, but some schooling still needs to happen; hmmm, my shoe lace is untied, maybe i should stop pedaling and take a look...nope...nadda...not going to happen.

everyone should get neutered, it makes biking even more fun than before

big thanks to darryl for the jersey work; with a little bit of luck we'll have something by mid summer.