Friday, June 30, 2006

race follow up

first, thank god that this was a bike race and did not have anything to do with running (other than up the hill) or g would have schooled us big time.

kudos to dr. h for a well executed race. hard on my tail the whole time until the last 200 meters or so where he passed me to take the race (i had blown up like a roman candle and had no gas left in the tank to use but a couple of cliches). some good back and forths through the race including a pass and re-pass on the uphill corner following the downhill, and a well placed elbow and forearm (by me) to prevent a pass through the gate at the top of the hill - racing can be a little cut throat.

of course my only criticism is that there is not enough technical elements to this race (this is only me crying). i look forward to the family race and wienner roast/knock down derby at bur oak later this summer because the course has more technical elements.

throwing out the date of Sunday August 6th for the Grand Beach ride and family swim day. hope this works for people.

finally...this bike was shown at the handmade bike show this year. it comes from ant and is made of wood and cooper...very cool...and of course, its a fixie

Ullrich, Basso Out

This is fucking huge! Operacion Puerto has dropped like a bomb and rocked the Tour. This makes the Festina scandal of 1998 look minor by comparison. Apparently, this is no longer just circumstantial evidence. These guys were the heavy, heavy favourites. It's like Gretzky and Lemieux being suspended from the NHL in the early 90s. Also gone is Francisco Mancebo who finished 4th last year. Vinokourov's whole team looks to be gone, despite the fact that he's not been implicated. Floyd looks to be clean. But so many Phonak riders have gotten in trouble in the last few years that it makes me just a little nervous. Apparently more suspensions will be announced throughout the day. We all knew the Tour would have a different look this year with Lance's absence. But this isn't just a changed landscape so much as a whole new world. Read the stories here and here and here.

If things stay as they are, the new favourites are Floyd, Levi Leipheimer, and maybe even George Hincapie. Or possibly some really young blood like Valverde. But Spanish riders are almost by definition under suspicion these days.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Garbage Hill Race Report

Yup, it hurt alright. A real lung-buster, this one.

Better turnout than I'd feared. Johnny G, Hal, and myself. And 2 fans: Charlene's Dad and uncle Karl. Tried to convince them to race, but they didn't bite.

4 laps of Garbage hill. Basically the standard training route minus the steep climb. So 3 times up per lap. Close race. The closest of any I can remember. Well, the messenger race was close I guess. But nobody really knew it until it was all over. All three of us pretty much stayed together for the first lap. Then Johnny dropped off a bit. Hal and I stayed together the whole race. I yo-yo'd off his back wheel for 95% of the race. Tried to pass a few times, but couldn't pull it off. Until the final climb up to the finish. I stood up, pushed a bigger gear, passed him and held on for the win by 15-20 seconds. Gears came in handy this time around. Johnny came in 1-2 minutes back.

Good times. Feels good to race again. Kind of makes me want to go out and get a race license to give Penner some company in the 30+ Sport gang.

Next race: Waterfront Dr. Road Race. Cobblestones, traffic circles. Classic Euro-style road racing. Coming in mid-late July, after everyone's back from their various trips. Don't forget to take pics on your rides to share on the blog.

The Tour starts Saturday morning. Despite the looming doping controversy, I'll still be glued to the TV every morning for the next three weeks. All are welcome.

Millar Time

Given all the talk about doping these days arising from "Operacion Puerto," this year's TdF is beginning on a rather sour note. Sounds like some big names are poised to fall soon. Ullrich, Basso, Beloki, Mancebo, just to name a few of the biggest ones. Ouch!

But for those who want to retain at least a glimmer of hope in these dim times, the story of David Millar looks refreshingly like it might be heading on the opposite trajectory. Millar is coming off a two year ban for using EPO. The difference: he was not caught by a test, but confessed to taking it. That alone is a breath of fresh air when everyone else uses the strategy of deny, deny, deny. Let's hope Millar can make good on his promise to show that it's possible to win while riding clean. See the full story at VeloNews.

another race....sorry, a ride for those interested

from paddy

july 2nd.(this Sunday)7am.4 laps.Epinnette Trailhead(Newfoundland Trail)100 miles.self-supportedbring your own whoppers.pass this along to whomever you think would be interested/capable...this is a "competitive" ride-not a sanctioned race, and it's 100 miles-offroad, and it's on rain or shine, and there's no prizes, other than bragging rights...and saddle sores......see ya at 7....

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Garbage Hill Race

The race is on. Need to get back to the one race a month minimum after the May layoff.

Thursday June 29 at Garbage Hill. Meet at 8:45 at the SW corner to go over the route. Race starts at 9pm. Hoping for a decent turnout, despite the rather meagre odds of that happening. It would be a shame to have a race with no racers.

Got out for a few laps tonight. Kind of drove home the point that while I have been putting in a decent amount of miles lately, I've been doing no focused training. And no racing at all. This is going to hurt. But it will be fun too--especially over beers afterwards.

Sounds like Hal is already throwing out excuses. Floyd has a nice take on excuses: "To my way of thinking, it doesn't matter if your goddamn head fell off or your legs exploded. If you didn't make it, you didn't make it. One excuse is as good as the other. There's only one rule. The guy who trains the hardest, the most, wins. Period." Consider that a challenge--even if one I'm almost certain I can't back up. Let's see if Floyd's law holds up?

Dave Z

We all know that Floyd has been named an honorary member of the FGBC. And we're expecting big things from him over the next few weeks. But I think his pal Dave Zabriskie might warrant consideration for honorary membership as well. Check out his latest report from Spain. Mullets, Skynyrd, riding bikes. Does it get any better than this?

Mentioning Skynyrd reminds me that Duane Roland died this week. You might think you don't know him, but really you do. He can be heard every now and then over the sound system at the F&H riffing it up on his guitar for Molly Hatchet. We are so lucky that our clubhouse has such good taste in music.

Critical Mass

Received this note from Kenton Lobe this morning:
Hello folks,

As a cyclist I am aware that there is much to be done in Winnipeg to truly make the city safe and inviting for people who want to make a responsible choice for their personal health, the health of our environment and our communities. This Friday (June 30) at 4:30pm cyclists from all walks of life will gather at Central Park and together ride through downtown as a peaceful protest to the dominant car culture.

You may be aware that the Winnipeg Police have had two previous incidents with this ride - both instances have resulted in formal charges of policy brutality. I invite you to a peaceful protest where we can, for a brief time, imagine and model together what spirited energy means for those who choose to view the world from two wheels
instead of four. Invite a friend (or two!)...


I'm aware that FGBC members are divided on these sorts of events. I find myself genuinely ambivalent on this question. Perhaps our next event should be a panel discussion at the F&H. We could hold it on karaoke night which, given the high turnout, might give us a sense of the barometer on cycling-related matters on our home turf.

Looks like we're leaning towards Thursday for the Garbage Hill race--unless there is an avalanche of other preferences in the next little while. I will post a confirmation with a course description later this evening. Didn't get there last night. My head was still ringing from ultimate on Monday. But I'm heading there around 7pm this evening. Call if you want to ride.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

want to race?

There will be a race this week at Garbage Hill. Guaranteed. Even if I'm the only one there. Hal leaves on Sunday for 2 weeks, and it would only be fair to give him the opportunity to show how all his training there in the last while translates into a dominant performance. Apparently today is out. Wednesday does not look good either. I doubt we'll find a day that works for everybody. So the race will be on the day most people can make it. So please respond with a comment (it's not very hard) and declare your availability (or not) on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Start time will be around 9pm. I hope to head over there this evening to decide on the course. Will probably leave around 8:30 or 9:00. Call if you're interested in joining me.

On my ride into work this morning, I started thinking about possible routes for a FGBC road ride. By my count there are now at least 7 FGBC riders with road bikes: myself, Unger, Johnny G, Jonny S, Hal, Vic, Juan Eppstein. Penner apparently has one on the way. And there may be others. What are we waiting for? I propose the following route. Start in Morden. Head west on Hwy 3 through La Rivierre to Hwy 34. North on 34 to Swan Lake. East on Hwy 23 to the Jordan Elevator. South on Hwy 3 back to Morden. By my count, that would be about 160 kms. Perfect. A century ride with a couple of good climbs. Thoughts?

The Floyd media coverage keeps pouring in. This time he's shown up on the cover of Bicycling Magazine. This one's kind of different. Not so much a standard profile as a transcription of a conversation between Floyd and his training partner Dave Zabriskie. These guys have a reputation as the goofballs of the peloton. Lance used to refer to them as Dumb and Dumber when they were his teammates on US Postal. Check out the article here.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Floyd wants you . . .

. . . to ride your bike.

Excuse the gratuitous Floyd post. But this picture, lifted from Velo News, was too good to pass up. The Tour starts next Saturday with a short prologue TT in Strasbourg. This is French Menno country, so it's almost as if Floyd is racing on home territory. The cable is hooked up. Coverage starts at 7:30 am. Bring your yerba and fruit loops to the official FGBC TdF headquarters in my basement. Coffee and meaningless chatter will be provided.

Looks like a good weekend for bike riding is shaping up. Perfect way to kick off summer. A whole whack of folks are heading out to Spruce Woods for the weekend. Officially billed as "Family Camping," I believe, this could also be considered training for the Blunderd Hunderd--Paddy H's race consisting of 4 laps of the Epinette trail. This takes place on July 2--next Sunday. Camping and drinks on Saturday. A relatively low-key affair, as far as races go. And no race license required, so a good opportunity to line up against the locals. Would be nice to put in a showing on behalf of FGBC, especially since we missed out on the single speed champeenship.

I believe I've successfully fixed my shifting problems. And Unger has found the source of his chain-skipping woes. No more excuses.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

no race tonight

Response to my latest race proposal have been lukewarm, at best. Some have promised, however, that they can make it next week. Would have been nice to have some sort of summer solstice race. But there will still be plenty of light next week. So we'll try again. Stay tuned for further details. Will try to hammer something out over beers this weekend at Spruce Woods.

Nice ride out to Lockport and back this morning. Johnny S, Unger, and myself. More and more road bikes are popping up amongst the FGBC rank and file. Perhaps some sort of largish road ride is in order. Once we have our jerseys we can go and taunt the FOG guys.

Exciting moment at the Cambridge last night: Some disgruntled and apparently grieving drunk very nearly hurtled a glass at our table after having been cut off by the server. Fortunately, he was still able to realize, as he was just about to throw, that this might not be the best response to the situation at hand. So we were spared the decision of whether it would be best to catch or duck. After being shown the door, the poor guy did charge back in. But with the numbers being roughly 30 - 1 against him, he was not able to consummate his rage with any sort of physical contact. Whew!

Monday, June 19, 2006

paddy in the hole

Wasn't there to witness Hal's latest. But spectacular as I'm sure it was, he'd be hard-pressed to beat the performance that Paddy H pulled on our ride yesterday. Flying down a gravel road at almost 70 kmh, he tries to skid around a corner. Impressive skid. Longer than James D, even. But he misjudges his speed and overshoots the corner. And then he just disappears. Problem is it wasn't just a ditch, but a 10 ft. drop into a boulder filled hole. Nice.

this is why they call me crash

By popular demand (well from Chris anyways)....on Friday I wanted to get a quick training lap in before I went to Morden (was there twice this weekend - for golf on Saturday and then a ride on Sunday). On my second intervals lap the extra tube I had strapped to the rail under my seat (never use toe clip straps for this) came out and fell into my freewheel, locking up my back wheel. Not a bad thing if your going up hill at 17 kmph - a very bad thing if your going downhill at 50 kmph. I lost control and spilled at the bottom of the hill on the North side (there is something about that downhill). Any ways, after the dust settled I took inventory and came out of the crash with scrapes on my right knee, right butt and hip, right elbow and abrassions to the 'ol melon because my helmet cracked in three places (I now have a brand new bucket). I was pretty ugly piece of work as I rode home with blood on my arm and leg, and with more dust and dirt on me than Pig Pen from Peanuts. Yet I will continue to go back - probably tomorrow for another training ride (maybe I am just perfecting my wipe outs on this piece of crap dirt hill). Your all invited to see if I make it through this next training session.

Tour Time

The Tour de France starts in two weeks. The cable guy is coming later today. The basement at 206 Home St. will be the TdF headquarters. All are welcome.

The articles on Floyd are starting to pile up. Now that Lance is finally gone, Floyd is getting plenty of media attention. Everyone loves a Mennonite freak show.

While Floyd now has to be counted as a legitimate contender, Jan Ullrich is looking awfully good these days. He blew away the field in the TT at the Tour de Suisse yesterday. And Basso is coming off a huge win in Italy, where he simply rode away from everyone in the mountains. A classic battle between the time trialists and climbers. Should be interesting.

Hal, tell us about your latest adventure at Garbage Hill.

Friday, June 16, 2006

race across america; and up garbage hill

Hal posted something a while back on Jure Robic, winner of the past two editions of the Race Across America. He didn't fare so well this time around, pulling out with pneumonia. Mountain bike legend Tinker Juarez is racing this year for the first time. He currently sits in 3rd place. See the current standings here.

It is time to resume the FGBC racing schedule. Last race was almost 2 months ago. Garbage Hill seems to be the preferred location for the next race. The days will be long next week. We could probably start at 9:30 and still race in the light. Tuesday?

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

lifted from the 117 blog

the way it should play out. the following text is from the 117 blog (blog site for one on one, the best bike shop in minneapolis). i highlighted my favourite line in the post.

Jun 10, 2006 - 1:06 pm
Well, you know bad things are going to happen when someone goes into Dan's apartment and helps themselves to a bike. I pity the sucker that is seen riding it. Dark blue/blackish Redline Mono-cog, silver labeling/pinstriping, Avid disc brakes, black Viscious cycles rigid fork, Kenda small-block tires. If seen, don't call anybody, just derby that bastard to the ground and bring the bike to the shop. Don't worry, if it's Dan he'll forgive you. If it's not, they deserve it. Dan says he will pay for any damage to your own bike, car, bus, whatever, due to the impact with said persons. If you're the culprit and you happen to read this I suggest either bringing it back today or staying far far away for the rest of your life. bh

Jun 12, 2006 - 10:46 am
It's baaaaccckkk. Props to our man Sam, hanging out at the Muddy Waters at the right time last night to see a couple of guys roll by on bikes, one of which was Dan's Redline. Chased them down, slapped a lock on the bike and got it back less than 48 hours fom the theft. Kick ass. bh

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

anybody have a torque wrench?

so, i've been doing a bunch more messing around... straightened the bent back rotor a bit more by taking it off (although it's still a little wobbly), and then had to learn how to properly re-align the brakes. I get it now, and they're better than ever... too good... I'm going to go over the bars yet if I'm lucky...

anyway, everything has a torque rating on it... is there a source that says x in-lbs = "tight" and x+10 means, "tight as you can make it". I don't want to undertighten, 'cause something might fall off, and overtightening can warp and screw stuff up.

bike maintenance is fun... so far...

Monday, June 12, 2006

spring ride

stellar event. can't imagine it being any better.

if you have pics, please send them to me at:
dnbarg @

I will gather them together and put them on the media page of our website. That way, they can be easily revisited, as opposed to lost in the massive archives of the blog...

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Spring Ride Pics

Nice riding this weekend boys and girls. Good times. Here are a few highlights and lowlights. More to come, I'm sure. Can't wait until next year.

Battery Rock, Jonny S. style

Clipped in



Where's Lump?

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

the campground

there are two campgrounds at Falcon: Beach and Lakeshore... I don't have my email from Juan handy, so I'm kind of guessing based on what I've gleaned from the docs on the Manitoba Conservation/whiteshell website that we're at the Lakeshore campground.

Here's a bit of the townsite map... I've put a yellow dot on what's designated group use until the end of June...

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

more spring ride details

the meeting times have changed slightly to 9:30 at Deacon's Corner and 3:00 at Falcon Lake Ski Hill.

Things to bring:
  • smallish change to pay for camping (could be around $10 or less) and dogs for dogfest
  • firewood
  • tarps
  • a spare tube for your bike (tools, pump, etc should be in ready supply)
- yes. the prescribed dogs are being brought in from Blumenort. There were 16 folk counted "in" last night at the meeting... I am ordering 3 per, plus maybe a couple extra... if you weren't at the meeting, and you're wondering if you were counted "in", please check with Jonny S in Altona, or me in Winnipeg.
- please let me know if you're bailing on the event so not too many dogs are... OK, forget it, can too many dogs really be purchased? I know Unger will be good for a whole bunch of them... Oh, if you're not coming, let us know so we can bring extra buns.
- condiment status is uncertain at this point.
- bring your own buns
- bring your own creamed corn

Scotch Club
- a few trios have been created to make a bit of higher end scotch possible... if you want to sample, get yourself into a trio

Clubhouse Beer
- those who contributed (even once or twice) to the tally at the clubhouse will have some beer available to them.

that's enough for now.