Thursday, February 12, 2009

Thursday Anticipation

This is going to take a while. We are a busy group. But before we really get into it, take a moment to ponder with Aiden how sweet the sweetest weekend in the world is going to be.

1) Spring Ride

2) 24 Hours of Coens

It's just around the corner now. You don't want to miss this one. Among other things, we have a new venue and a revamped entertainment program. And we will have a new winner. Bring it on Anton.

3) Spring Classics Pool

The cyclocross season is almost over. I find that a little bit sad. But the good news is that the spring classics are just around the corner. The cobbles and sharp leg-burning burgs are coming. Once again, the low stakes gambling office of the FGBC presents the FGBC Spring Classics Pool. It starts in just over 2 weeks, on Feb. 28, with the race formerly known as Het Volk.

One question: we have used two different approaches so far: (a) the original salary and cap approach and (b) picking riders from a series of lists approach that was used for the CX Pool. I can go either way. Any preferences?

4) Spring Training Camp

Halberto's plans are coming together nicely. He will join Alex and me and perhaps some guys from our NC sister club, Bull City Cycling, for five sweet days of riding. We are going to ride him into the ground. Needless to say, others are welcome to join.

5) Birthday Ride

The route is planned. Don't forget to RSVP. Details here.

6) Gianni's Grass Track Glossary

Last but not least is the latest entry from our grass-stained friend Gianni:

Note: I don’t if or how we’ll work this into the grass track series, but hey, a guy can dream… and it’ll be something to think/talk about during those lonely hours in the early morning during the 24h race.

A Derny is a motorized bicycle for motor-paced track cycling events such as during six-day and Keirin racing) or motor-paced road races (relative uncommon thesedays). It is driven by a 98cc Zurcher two-stroke engine and by being pedalled through a fixed gear, typically of 70 teeth on the front chainring and 11 on the sprocket on the back wheel. The combination allows for smooth acceleration and slowing, important when the rider taking pace is centimetres from the pacer's shielded back wheel. A coupling between the motor and the back wheel ensures the machine will not stop dead if the motor seizes.

The first Derny 'Entraineur' or 'Bordeaux-Paris' models, with their characteristic petrol tank across the handlebars, were built by Roger Derny et Fils of the avénue St Mandé, Paris, France in 1938, but the name derny is now applied to all such vehicles, regardless of manufacturer.

On a derny, the driver (often a fairly large dude … for aerodynamic reasons) sits close to the back in an upright position to provide an envelope of low wind resistance for the cyclist drafting behind. The machine can pace riders up to 90 km/h, although races rarely exceed 80 km/h.

For most derny races, the cyclist sits in the slipstream of the derny for the duration of the event. In keirin races, common in Japan and familiar elsewhere, the derny brings several riders up to speed, at which point it pulls off and the race finishes in a sprint without the pacer (a future post will deal with keirin in more detail).

Even the most modern of dernies are noisy and smelly. Part of the “atmosphere” of a six-day. It goes without saying that racing behind a derny requires nerves of steel and a massive ability to handle high speeds.

Video of a derny race from the Ghent Six Day:


Brad the Impaler said...

Track racers have stones.

Regarding the Classics Pool, I vote for the list approach like the CX pool.

Gianni said...

Stones? Here's stones (also involves dernies):

Brad the Impaler said...

That's very impressive. But then this is in a whole other category:

500 kms a day for 25 straight days. I think we ought to get out there and lend some moral support a couple of times in July.

Brad the Impaler said...

Actually this is a better link:

The Dark Lord said...

Moral support or psychological help? That's crazy.

Brad the Impaler said...

It's pretty ambitious. If anyone can do it, Arvid can.

Gianni said...

Honourary co-lieutenant (vice admiral?) territory, for sure.