Saturday, October 31, 2009

Uncork the Champagne

This competition is over. Gary has it all sewn up. With 550 points today in Colorado, he's stretched his lead up over 800 points. Fortunately, it looks like we have a good battle shaping up for the rest of the podium spots. Dallas remains in second. But Vic and Jay have switched places again. Vic got shut out today. That is no way for anyone with podium aspirations to act. He deserves a reprimand. And Jay was eager to supply it. He did so by dropkicking Vic off the podium and reclaiming third spot. Vic didn't plunge too far down though. He sits in 4th. But look out for that guy behind you. He's just 25 points down now and itching to make a big move.

Sharing the podium with Gary today were three vicarious racers who found themselves tied with 400 points each. King Andy and Prince Dan were among them. So was Matt. Remember him?

Two more races tomorrow. Superprestige #2 at Hoogstraten in the morning. And then the Americans go at it again in Boulder.

Full results here.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Old School CX, Part II

Cyclocross is awesome. We all know that. But apparently it used to be much, much awesomer. We got a sense of that a few weeks back with that video of the national cyclocross championships in Coventry. And it is only confirmed with this video of a race in Montmarte in 1945. Long stair run-ups. And in general, very urban. Not unlike your average FGBC Tuesday Night Race. It leaves us with plenty of ideas. And as soon as the official cx season is over, we'll put some of those ideas to good use.

And don't miss this one. It is not embeddable. But is perhaps even more awesome yet.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Because Thursday nights are for Fashion...

And because you all deserve to look as good as I did this morning...

I will be in attendance at the Junk-shon tonight, and I will bring the wool.

Shall we say eightish?

Thursday Anticipation

We already dress like champions, what with the sweetest jersey in the world and its younger cousin, the sweetest wool jersey in the world. And the beverage of champions? We've got that all figured out as well. But do we have a genuine champion in our midst? Or maybe a few? We will find out on Sunday at the Provincial Cyclocross Championships, which will be held at Woodhaven Park. The format is different for this one. It's based on age this time around. More info from Olympia.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The wool is here!

Just when some of us had almost given up hope... I came home to a box of wool tonight, and they are very sweet indeed.

The short sleeves have the traditional three pockets in the back, secured with buttons; the long sleeves have a big, single pocket with a zipper. Both are very nice.
If you need yours before the weekend, email me.

The Light Project

"Get your lamps lit, get your lamps lit,
If you don't I will soon run you in,
Miss Wise was all right for she had a search light,
So safely along did she spin,
Get your lamps lit, get your lamps lit,
Miss Foolish was fined the next day,
Which opened her eyes; Miss Foolish got wise,
And bought a search light right away."

From Gianni, on behalf of the Dept. of Special Projects:
I’m interested in trying to make my own bright LED light. From what I’ve read, it’s doable – there are many plans out there, and the parts are pretty straightforward. It seems like you can specify how lightweight, how bright, how [in]expensive or how much burn time you want, and then design a light that meets those needs (in some cases, these specifications conflict with each other, of course).

So, here is one that looks about like about what I had in mind.

It’s about 350-400 lumens, burns about 2.5-3 hours (off of rechargeable AAs, or you could use a 9.6V power tool battery) and prices out (based on some crude research) at about $50 (plus your batteries). Only change I had in mind was to make it a helmet mount, so that one could keep the batteries under their clothes in the winter. I recognize this isn’t substantially cheaper than buying a light, but thought that (a) it would be interesting to try and (b) this little design could be a stepping stone to something more sophisticated.

Two Questions:

Question 1: are you interested in building a light this winter?

My very rough idea was to sort out a plan in the next couple weeks, get parts in November, and do most of the building in December. I really have no idea how many hours of work it would be to build a light, but safe to assume more than 8 but less than 30.

Question 2: do the above specifications appeal to you? Or have you seen any plans that look better?

Colin A. is willing to offer his expertise on all things electrical to the project, and knows suppliers of all the bits. Perhaps once we have a sense of who is interested (and what they are interested in), we can come up with a more detailed project plan/cost/timing. I’m willing to coordinate the ordering of parts, etc.

Please post below if you are interested, have thoughts about if/how/when to do this, or thoughts about design.

TNR Report

It was another working ride. We are such an industrious bunch. This time around Halberto enlisted our help in thinking through the possibilities for the course that will serve to determine this year's collection of provincial cyclocross champions. In good Canuck form, there will be a hockey rink ride-through. And that hill to the south of the park? There isn't much of it that won't be used. But perhaps the biggest thrill of all comes in the form of what they are referring to as the death spiral. This initiative comes from our friend from Vancouver who joined us for last week's ride. It will be dizzying, but delightful. All in all, the preliminary course design looks good. Very good.

Back at the klubhaus, imagine our elation when we pulled into the parking lot and discovered evidence that the poosher might be present. Indeed, he was warming up the seats with Jonny B when we walked in the door. He reports that the Pinedale project is proceeding nicely. They are taping the drywall. And after a while, he even got to talking about bike racing again. He's not back yet. But we have reason to believe that the much anticipated return journey will commence shortly. So excited did he get, in fact, that by the end of the evening he'd submitted a bid to host the annual winter 24 hour race. He has a brand new big-screen television that sounds like a perfect fit for the film screening portion of the race. This location would allow us to construct yet another new course--the fourth different course in the four year history of this venerable event. It would feature the much beloved river trail, the Forks, and Whittier Park. And it only gets better: there would be not only one but two Sals per lap! It all sounds very promising. But he's got to get the house finished first.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


9:30 at my place.

At the klubhaus, some discussion of this summer's big undertaking is on the agenda.

And talk of the upcoming Nordic Cross season is in order too. Sadly, cyclocross is almost done.

Be there.

More Cross-Tastic

Good thing Charlene didn't pack it in after the first lap. Otherwise we wouldn't have this photo of her showing us how to run the stairs.

(via Charles Feaver)

More photos and a short video over at the Cross-Tastic HQ.

Monday, October 26, 2009

FGBC CX Pool Roundup

The Fraggle won Koppenbergcross with 455 points. Halberto and Charlene were 2nd and 3rd. They had 405 and 335 points, respectively. In Louisville, Chris O took the win with a 390 point day. I managed 365 points for second place. And in third place, we had a four-way tie between Andy, Dallas, Gary, and Dan. Each of them finished with 340 points on the day.

In the overall race, Jay briefly reclaimed his spot on the podium. He replaced Dallas on the third podium step after Koppenbergcross. But by the end of the day, Jay fell back into fourth place. Dallas moved up to second and pushed Vic down to third place. Gary's lead is now over 500 points. Hopefully he will blow up like he did in his real race on Sunday. But with the rest of the podium challengers beating each other up to become second best, it doesn't look like that will happen anytime soon. There was a little more excitement at the other end of the standings. Graham has moved into last spot. Solidly ensconced in the middle of the back just three weeks ago, his fortunes have been falling for a while now. And by the end of the day yesterday, he found himself clinging to the lanterne rouge. He took it from Rachel and Naomi, who found themselves in the awkward position of having to share it after the Koppenbergcross.

Full results here.

Cross-Tastic Report

There is no question that this has been the best season of cx racing we have ever seen. Gary served up another sweet race yesterday--even though the FGBC got shut out of the draw prizes. It was the fastest race of the season by far, but it still hurt just the same. Other than a short singletrack section and a few small hills, it was a hammer fest. The swoopy corners were a highlight.

Thanks to Cousin Thomas for the A race photos. And apologies for the shortage of B race photos. I spent most of that race trying to find Jonah. He was hanging out by the mud. Of course. More photos from Garry Stewart.

Results here.

The highlight of the day took place before the racing even began, when KK rolled up on his bike. It was the first time he ventured out onto the road since that fateful day back in August. Welcome back KK.

After Altona, the kids race seemed non-existent. There were only six of them. But the Wolseley Wheels duo of Jonah and Auckland were back for their weekly U7 battle. They were as enthusiastic as ever, at least after the race. They didn't like the hills so much. But when they discovered, along with Mike's boys, that Tim Hortons coffee cups could be squeezed between their brakes and tires to simulate a motorcycle engine, they were good to go for hours. The dogfest was a big hit too.

Not afraid to risk another navigational disaster, the Impaler took the holeshot in the B race. But it wasn't long before he faded, claiming that this was not his day. Cousin Adam, where were you? This was your big chance to win that Belgian side bet you so boldly initiated before you dropped off the face of the earth.

Or maybe Brad was just tiring out the competition for Artur, who took command after a few laps and won by a big margin. Having upgraded to a full license, he finally got the recognition he deserved. Except that all the prizes were draw prizes. And he got shut out. While Brad won a cowbell. Where's the justice?

In the A race, Jonny and Mike were ready to do their part in the 2009 FGBC-RRR FGD Challenge. Jonny got the better of Mike last week in Altona. But Mike got his revenge yesterday, finishing a couple of places ahead of Jonny.

It didn't take long before six leaders separated themselves from the rest. They stayed together until the end, before Olli thanked his companions for the free ride they gave him by attacking over the final barriers to take the win. The Finnish Fox. Or is it the Foxy Finn? Either way, that guy is so sly.

As we have come to expect, Craig was at the front all day. In the end, he finished 5th.

The dr? He couldn't hang with the leaders. He seems to like riding alone. Somewhere between the leading group and the rest of the field. That's where you can usually find him. 7th place for him.

(via Garry Stewart)

Every time he got to the mud, Jonny G thought about how awesome it is that he's no longer sharing a bike with Charlene. Her old road bike did not take so well to the river bank section. It got caked with mud and left her with a big deficit after the first round when she had to stop to clean it up so that the wheels could turn again. She almost packed it in after the first lap. But after being reminded that points were at stake, and that it was permissible to run through the mud, she decided to continue. Good thing too. Without her 25 points, we would have failed to achieve our goal of surpassing the 2000 point plateau in the Challenge. In any case, Jonny's Redline handled the mud just fine, no doubt in part because Charlene's running packed it all down for us.

The Fraggle rocked.

And Mike continues to be sucked in to the awesomeness of cyclocross.

Paul B took the sartorialist prime.

As for the Challenge, the FGBC brought 8 racers, while RRR showed up with 5. The FGBC wins 136-77. If Gilles hadn't broken his chain on the second last lap, it would have been a little closer.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Saturday, October 24, 2009


Three dudes named Chris found themselves on the podium today in the vicarious version of the USGP race in Louisville. And there was also one imposter named Mike, who elbowed his way on there and ended up tied with Chris D. The best Chris on the day was yours truly. Taking first and second place in both the mens and womens races, it was a 550 point day for me. Chris O was second with 375 points. And Chris D and Mike shared the final podium spot with 335 points each. The 4th Chris in the pool (Chris A) was not anywhere near the podium. He ended up in a tie with four others for 13th place. But at least he's moved out of the cellar in the overall race. All the way up to 3rd last, where he's tied Graham.

Gary continues to enjoy a big lead in the overall race. He has almost 500 points to spare. Vic has moved up to second place. And Dallas nudged Jay off the podium. The race for second is tight, at least. Vic, Dallas, and Jay are separated by just 50 points. But from there it's another 300 points back to Charlene in 5th place.

Full results here.

No races in Europe this week. Koppenbergcross (aka GVA #2) is tomorrow. And they're back at it in Louisville for round two as well.

Can we break 2000 tomorrow?

That is the goal. Who is going to be there to help us achieve it?

Friday, October 23, 2009

This year, it's Jonny B's turn . . .

. . . to grace the front page of the Altona Echo for their annual Southern Cross story. Well done Jonny. That jersey looks good on you. Then again, it just looks good period.

Read the story here. I especially like the recycled interview with Deanna. I guess she made such an impression with her incisive comments a few years ago that they just decided to use it again.

Jonny, I have your prize money ($10). And I also have $50 for Paul, along with a sculpture and some farmer sausage. I also have his big beer glass. It is no longer full though.

Yet another one for the collection

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Thursday Anticipation: Late Edition

Not to be outdone by Gary, Halberto turns to what he does best: food.

Thursday Anticipation

Gary is working his ass of to make sure the level of awesomeness we've come to expect this season is met, and quite possibly exceeded. All kinds of details and information are available at the official race website.

Among other things, he has lined up an impressive collection of draw prizes. In addition to the brakes we've already mentioned, you might win a jersey.

Caps, socks, and cowbells are up for grabs as well. Good times. It kind of makes you wonder why we bother with anything else.

FGBC CX Pool Roundup

Wait a minute. Isn't there a vicarious race going on?

Three races, three different winners: Bill, LeAnn, and Adam. But the big winner last weekend was Gary. He stretched his lead out to over 400 points. This is starting to feel eerily familiar. Surely we're not racing for second place already.

Full results here.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Another Reminder of Good Times!

p.s. thanks to Michelle for the great competition
p.p.s. thanks for all the cycle cap support

Awesome Race!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


9:30 pm at my place. I'm not 100% sure I will be there for the start. But it is okay to stick with the regular meeting place anyway. Consistency is good.

Southern Cross Video Report

Southern Cross 2009 from dnb on Vimeo.

Click on the Southern Cross 2009 link to watch it in HD. Good times!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Southern Cross Photo Report

Altona has developed a reputation for putting on some big cyclocross races. Yesterday the ante was upped yet again. 132 racers and the biggest field of the year. By far. All hail Johnny S.

Simply put, it was awesome.

The Secretary filmed. Check back for the official 2009 Southern Cross film.

Dave and Vic were stationed at the six pack to judge for style points. Luc won it. Hands down.

11 first-time racers kicked things off in the C race.

The kids constituted the largest field of the day. I think there were 54 of them. Sadly, I have no photos.

The combined B/Citizen race was pretty big too. 51 riders took to the start.

And yet there is only one action photo. The official FGBC photographer spent most of the race responding to the minor fiasco that ensued when the Impaler inadvertently led a handful of racers on his own special alternative version of the course.

The A race field was pretty much the same as usual.

The six pack was a highlight. Or at least it was memorable. Funny how it seemed to get harder with each subsequent lap.

There was mud. Not Supercross mud. But just enough to make things messy.

Three times up the hill per lap. It felt a whole lot steeper than it looks here. Especially from the back side.

The Cricket was awesome, as usual.

So was Jonny G.

The sand pit saw a range of different approaches. Some rode.

Others ran.

Paul went with the one handed tightrope walk.

Luc simply dragged his bike through it.

And Jonny G seemed to float right over it.

Good times at the curling club, post-race. Next year Johnny says he will have more Southern Cross IPA on hand.