Monday, May 31, 2010

Dallas Does It

Apologies to those who were not at the Spring Ride. But sometimes vicarious racing must take a back seat to the more tangible variety of bike riding.

We will keep this short and sweet, so as not to take away from the post Spring Ride euphoria that is currently being played out below.

Everything you need to know is here.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Good Times

We should do that again some time.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Thursday Anticipation: The Big One

It is all but here. Only one more sleep and less than 24 hours to go.

Here, again, are the relevant details:

1) We will meet at my place at 9am or Deacons Corner at 10am for the North End crew.

2) It looks like we are well on our way to getting the ride situation sorted out. See the discussion here. Bill has plenty of room for gear, bikes, etc. He's leaving at 1pm. If you can drop off your stuff at his place, he says he can bring it out. Some of us are bringing cx bikes. It's never inappropriate to ride a little cx.

3) Friday's ride will be at Falcon. Hopefully this will make it relatively easy to hook up with the folks who will be trickling in throughout the day.

The weather forecast is looking slightly better. High of 27 and no rain in the Whiteshell on Friday. It looks like we might have to contend with some rain on Saturday and Sunday though. That is hardly the end of the world.

The Secretary only arrives back in town later this evening some time. No word on the projector. Should he be able to come through, perhaps Colin would be so kind as to loan us his copy of the Big Lebowski. It would be even better, of course, if he were there to watch it with us.

Greipel, Finally

Andre Greipel has not enjoyed the Giro so far. And yet while all the rest of the big sprinters have long since abandoned, he is still hanging around. If he did not manage to win today, we'd have no doubt heard Mark Cavendish's laughter from Winnipeg. But the big German did win. And so the 10 teams who have him on their squads each picked up 150 points for his effort. Some picked up points elsewhere too. The best of those was Chris O. He had 125 points thanks to Julian Dean's second place finish and another 40 from Arashiro. He finished with 315 points and kept the streak alive, becoming the 18th different winner in 18 stages. This does put a wrinkle in his plan to go for the lanterne rouge. But a stage win is a stage win. You get vicarious podium kisses, after all. There was a three-way tie for second place between Queen Val, Matt, and me.

In the overall race, Val is showing that she's not going to let Dallas take this thing without a fight. We would expect nothing less. Dallas's lead is now at 79 points. The big casualty of the day was Jonah. Not only has he lost his podium spot again. He plummeted all the way down to 7th place. Ouch. Greg the Lunchbucket Kid replaces him on the podium. But Olli, Matt, Dan and Jonah are all within 105 points. Meanwhile, at the other end of the pool, Chris O may be out of contention for the lanterne rouge but Bill and Rachel are locked in a heated battle. Rachel currently holds it, as she has since taking it over from Vic on stage 12. But Bill's goose egg today brings him to within 22 points of the dubious honour.

Full results and overall standings here.

They're back to the mountains tomorrow. And Basso and Evans are sure to give it everything to steal the pink jersey from David Arroyo. It promises to be a very exciting weekend. Sadly, however, there will be no further updates until Sunday evening, due to the Spring Ride.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

TNR Report

Some people love to ride their bikes. Others, apparently, just love their bikes. They aren't so keen on getting them dirty. Perhaps they do not have access to water. Last night's ride along some muddy riverbank trails gave us an opportunity to determine who among us belongs to which crowd. We will be charitable, though, and refrain from naming names. We will not, however, refrain from declaring this turn of events more than a little disconcerting.

After the mud, we hit some alleys, tunnels, and parking garages, before racing back to the kulbhaus. The President showed up to take care of some presidential business. He has officially closed the book on The Book for this year. And Tom K showed up for the first time in 4 months. Yes, we keep track.

To say we got everything figured out for the Spring Ride would be an overstatement. But a few things are clear:

1) We will meet at my place at 9am or Deacons Corner at 10am for the North End crew. Breakfast at A & W will be as tasty as ever.

2) It appears there are enough vehicles. If you still need a ride, see the comment button below.

3) Friday's ride will be at Falcon. Hopefully this will make it relatively easy to hook up with the folks who will be trickling in throughout the day.

4) Sadly, the weather forecast looks less than ideal. Happily, we have shelter. Everything will be just fine.

5) Anything else? Again, see the comments button.

Token photos:


It means grit. Or determination. And it's always displayed on Stage 17. That's what happened in 2006 with the Honorary Captain at the Tour. And that's what Gianni demonstrated today, albeit in a more vicarious fashion. With 255 points from Hondo, Efimkin, and Konovalovas on today's not-so-easy "transitional" stage, he becomes the 17th different winner of the 2010 FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool. Queen Val demonstrated some grinta of her own. She had 195 points to finish second, inching ever closer to Dallas. And the divisive one rounded out the podium, with 185 points. He isn't really inching towards any destination worthy of note. But a top 20 placing seems a little more likely after today. We can always hope. There are, after all, Challenge points at stake here. So one mustn't scoff at those of us who scrap for the minor placings.

Dallas continues to lead the overall race. But Val and Jonah have switched places once again. Val is back in second. And Jonah, despite a goose egg on the day, managed to hold onto the final podium spot. There is a pretty fierce four-way battle for third place shaping up. Jonah, Greg, Dan, and Adam are all within 67 points.

Full results and overall standings here.

Those lucky few who have sprinters left in the race have a chance to make up some ground tomorrow. After that, it's back to the mountains before the ITT on the final day.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Prince Dan keeps the streak alive

16 stages, 16 different stage winners. I'm guessing that Corones probably has something to do with crown or coronation. How fitting is it, then, that the winner atop the vicarious Plan de Corones should be a member of the FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool's royal family? Today's winning combination was Evans, Uran, Samoilau, and Arroyo. Together, they managed 270 points and a stage win for the heir apparent. Mike had 255 points to finish second. And Dallas and Jonny B once again found themselves tied. This time they shared the final step of the podium, with 250 points apiece.

Dallas's lead in the overall race continues to grow. It is up to 259 points now. Jonah has moved back into second. But Val is just 25 points back. And the Lunchbucket kid is only another 15 points back of her.

Full results and overall standings here.

That the riders are thinking they finally get to see a slightly more humane stage tomorrow is confirmation that Angelo Zomegnan, the Giro's race director, has an insatiable desire to make riders hurt. They are still in the mountains and it still ends with an uphill finish. Is there any wonder that most of the sprinters have long gone home.


Last one before the spring ride. If you have any questions, best to show up and ask them tonight.

9:30 pm at my place.

Monday, May 24, 2010

This one's for Dallas

Regular visitors to this site will know how much Dallas loves the Giro. They will also know that he always finds a way to include a cx rider on his pool team. How fitting is it, then, that Dallas cemented his grasp on the overall lead, in part thanks to John Gadret's top 10 ride up the Zoncolan? Evans's second place finish helped too, as did Arroyo's 11th place showing. Dallas wound up with 230 points on the day. Good enough to win the stage. But he had to share it with Jonny B, who has the same combination of riders on his team. So Dallas becomes the first repeat stage winner of the 2010 FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool. And yet Jonny B keeps the streak of different winners alive. Jay had 205 points to round out the podium.

No change to the overall podium. But the gaps have gotten a bit bigger. Dallas's lead is over 100 points now. Val leads Jonah by just 20. But Olli has fallen back a bit. He's 75 points from the podium now. Greg is 45 points behind Olli. And Cousin Adam has entered into the mix. He is just 7 points behind Greg.

Full results and standings here.

Rest day today. Tomorrow is an uphill ITT. It just keeps getting better at the Giro.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

That is more like it

It only made sense that Nibali, Evans, and co. were going to try and get back into this thing. Nibali won it on the downhill run-in to the finish. Scarponi was right there too. He ended up finishing second. With Nibali and Scarponi as her two main GC guys, this was good news for Miriam. She finished with 275 points, and picked up her first stage win of the race. 14 stages, 14 different winners. Prince Dan was second. He had 235 points. And Cousin Adam managed 215 points, good enough for third on the stage.

Dallas continues to lead the overall race. But Olli has fallen back to 4th place. Val and Jonah are 2nd and 3rd. The gap between 1st and 3rd is still just 29 points. And now Adam has managed to make it a five person race. He is in 5th place, just 111 points of the pace. Another fine showing by the VP Road. We expect nothing less.

Full results and overall standings here.

Another big stage tomorrow, this time with the mountain top serving as the finish line. And then after Monday's rest day, an uphill ITT. Good times on the menu.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Where did all the studs go?

Every once in a while in a grand tour, there is a stage in which the top 20 is populated by relatively unknown riders. That is what happened today. That this often seems to happen on the day before a big mountain stage should not be terribly surprising. Nor should it be surprising that the implications of this phenomenon for vicarious racing are quite substantial. Since most of us really know nothing about this little game, we routinely pass over the lesser known riders. And so this can result in some low numbers in the pool. This has happened before. But not to the degree that it did today. We will get to that. But first, let's find out who won the stage. Jonny G won, that's who. He's the 13th winner in 13 stages, keeping the streak alive. He got lucky and picked Iban Mayoz as one of his wildcard riders. It is likely that he confused Mayoz with Iban Mayo. They are not the same person. But that didn't matter to Jonny today, as this felicitous confusion netted him 100 points and a stage win. Perhaps we are on to something with this mistaken identity strategy. It worked earlier with Gabriela Sabatini. And now Iban Mayo. Is there a Gretzky in the peloton? You may want to consider it next time you're staring at a long list of unfamiliar names. 100 points for a stage win is low. That is noteworthy in its own right. But even more noteworthy is that Jonny could have had 60 less points and still won the stage! That is right. 40 points would have taken the victory today. That's because Mike, who finished second, could muster only 35 points. And Olli's 30 points for third place were almost double the next highest point totals. As if that wasn't enough, there were nine goose eggs laid today. Too many to name them all. Wierd.

One would think that the implications of such small numbers for the overall standings would be negligible. One would be wrong. There was actually a fairly significant shakeup of the top 4 spots today. Dallas still leads. But Olli has moved up from 4th to 2nd. Val is down from 2nd to 3rd. And Jonah gets bumped from the podium altogether. He now sits in 4th place. And there is a good chance this could all change again tomorrow, as the distance between the top four spots is still under 50 points. We are on a good run with this Giro. Indeed, one could be forgiven for thinking that this is vicarious racing at its finest. Enjoy it.

Don't expect this same thing to happen again tomorrow. We have the first of two big days in the mountains. And so the big players will come out to strut their stuff. With the GC carnage that took place earlier in the week, this could be very interesting.

Full results and overall standings here.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Thursday Anticipation

Another late edition.

There are really only two events worth thinking about at the moment. Both of them take place at Falcon Lake.

1) The sweetest weekend of the year.

Only one more week to go.

2) The sweetest weekend of the summer.

Think of it as the summer version of the Spring Ride. Registration is now open. What are you waiting for? Here.

3) If you are still looking for more, Halberto has invited the FGBC to a Morden/Tinker ride on Monday. More info here.

Welcome Back Mike

Everyone's attention may be focused squarely on the Honorary Captain right now. But there is a thrilling little bike race that is also taking place at the moment. We call it the FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool. And there's not a bad race going on in Italy too. Theoretically, they are linked. But the latter is merely a vehicle for the former, which we know to be far more exciting.

Today it was Mike's turn to play the resurrection card. Remember when he was able to say he hadn't ever lost a vicarious race? That feels like a long time ago by now. And so far his vicarious Giro was shaping up to be just another one of his unremarkable performances. But today he managed to give us all a glimpse of his former dominant self. It's not like he's made his way back to the top or anything. He's still mired in 16th place, below even the lowly duo of Chris's D & H. But he did pull off a stage win today, just barely pipping Olli at the line. It was 305 to 300 for Mike. Matt finished third, with 285 points. In case you haven't noticed, Mike is the twelfth different winner in the twelve stages we've had so far. How we like it when that happens. The FGBC is into spreading around the joy. As long as we get to take home the final prize.

In the overall race, Jonah's run in the pink jersey has come to an end. It was Dallas who finally managed to pin him down and rip it off his shoulders. Maybe Dallas would like to come over and explain this development to Jonah. There may well be tears when he finds out about this. But he's a tough little kid and will no doubt bounce back. Besides, it is all still very close. Dallas is just 29 points ahead of Queen Val. And Val is only 5 points ahead of Jonah. As if that wasn't good enough, Olli is only another 5 points back of Jonah. Which means the top four are separated by just 39 points. Woo-hoo!

Full results and standings here.

Go Big or Go Home

We have always admired the Honorary Captain's desire to bring it. That is what makes him one of us. If you're going to throw stones, our mothers always told us, make sure you aim at big targets.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Vicarious TNR at the Giro?

It was almost like a Tuesday Night Ride at the Giro today. At least in the sense that the stage was animated by a bunch of riders clad in darnkness. Cervelo, Sky, Caisse d'Epargne, and Saxo Bank led the charge. All of their jerseys, like the sweetest jersey in the world, are predominantly black. There was, however, quite a bit more drama in Italy than what we've seen at the TNR in the last little while. We typically experience drama only when the President shows up. But he has been busy saving lives. And so, not coincidently, our drama levels have plunged. KK had a couple of flats last night. But that little bit of misfortune hardly compares to the obscure calamities that the President is capable of coming up with. There was plenty of drama on hand today in Italy though. Before today, it looked like Vino, Evans, and Nibali were the men to beat. Sastre and Wiggins, by contrast, were victims of bad luck and basically written off. And yet somehow they found themselves in a group that got a massive 17 minute advantage at one point, and ended with a 13 minute lead on the main contenders. Sastre and Wiggins are all of a sudden back in it. But so too are Arroyo, Tondo, and a surprisng Richie Porte who now wears the leader's pink jersey. This sets things up for a pretty exciting second half of the race.

Just as in the real Giro, today's stage in the vicarious version offered a chance for redemption. Rachel hasn't had a very good run lately. She was stuck in last place heading into today's stage and pretty much just sucking her way through the first 10 stages. Ian has fared a bit better. But 17th out of 30 is nothing to write home about. And while Greg the Lunchbucket Kid did manage to eke his way inside the top 10, he was still well off the pace of last year's impressive debut performance. And yet it was this unlikely trio that found itself on the podium today. Greg won the stage with a 215 point day. Ian had 180 points to finish second. And Rachel's 165 points were good enough to find the third podium step.

In the overall race, Jonah and Dallas continue to occupy the top two spots. But the revolving door that is third place continues to change. This time it's Cousin Adam's turn to reside there. Let's see how long he can survive.

Full results and standings here.

Final Tabulation

Vendor Credit

Dogfest Report

Good times. Very good times.

But not as good as the kids at Omand's Creek, apparently. When we rode through around 2am, they were just getting started. Crazy kids.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Wildcard Bingo

In order to taste success in a vicarious grand tour, it is necessary to have significant contributions from one's wildcard picks. Often they toil away in thankless anonymity. Working for the team and all that. But every once in a while, one of them is given a chance to shine. And when they do, it usually spells Success. With a capital S. Let's spell it together, shall we? S-U-C-C-E-S-S. Good work boys and girls. Today it was the wildcard Fabio Sabatini who came though. He finished second, beaten only by the Wenatchee Wunderkind, Tyler Farrar. And well ahead many more well-known sprinters. In doing so, he spelled Success for Paul and Charlie. They were the only two to pick him out of that long list of obscure names. And even though they were probably thinking of the late 80's tennis sensation, Gabriela Sabatini, they hit the jackpot on today's stage. Charlie's jackpot was quite a bit bigger, thanks to solid rides from Dean and McEwen, and another top 20 from Pozzato. He ended up with 330 points and the stage win. Paul was second, with 275 points. Once again Brad and Josh were forced to share a podium step. This time it was the third step. And this time Dallas was not there with them.

Jonah is getting pretty confident, having worn the vicarious pink jersey for the better part of a week now. The longer he holds onto it, the more it's going to hurt if Dallas or Olli manage to take it off his shoulders. Queen Val is right there as well. And everybody knows how hard royalty is willing to scrap to hold onto the reigns of power. We're just about half way there. This could get interesting yet.

Full results and standings here.


The annual spring rite is upon us. That is good news, as it means the Spring Ride is just around the corner.

Be at my place at 9:30 pm to ride over. Or you can just head straight to Juan's.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Three's a Crowd

Pozzato, Farrar, and Evans. That was the day's winning combination in the FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool. Brad, Dallas, and Josh all came up lucky and so had to squeeze themselves onto the top podium step with 270 points apiece. It was quite an entertaining scene. Especially when Brad pushed the other two off the podium and did that little victory dance he does.

In the overall race, Jonah continues to cruise along as his challengers beat themselves up in the race for second place. He's been watching old videos of Armstrong at the Tour. Dallas has moved up to second overall, bumping Olli down to third. Queen Val's time in the top three was short lived. But something tells me she'll be back.

Full results and standings here.

All Hail the Queen

Queen Val, that is. She scored a big win yesterday on the vicarious slopes of Monte Terminillo. 255 points from Sorensen, Vinokourov, and Mollema. And not only does she win the stage, she also vaults into the top three overall. How do they do it?

Greg the Lunchbucket Kid was second, 100 points back. And Craig the Cricket finished third, five points behind Greg.

In the overall race, Jonah and Olli continue to occupy the top to places.

Full results and standings here.

Today's results coming soon.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Vicarious Mud

That was awesome. It doesn't get any better than this. Best to just watch. Here are the final 30 km, beginning with Nibali and Sastre's crash.

Over in the FGBC Giro Pool, the gaps were as big as they were in the real race. Dallas and Jonny B tied for the win with 300 points apiece. That's the highest point totals for a stage so far. Meanwhile, there were a number of goose eggs laid today as well. Ian, Keith, Kevin, and I didn't manage to score a single point. And Craig had just 5. But Jonah is still cruising along. He was third on the day, with 265 points. He pushes his lead back up over 100 points. Olli has moved up into second and Adam dropped into third.

Full results and standings here.

On the menu for tomorrow? Mountains. How can you not love the Giro?

Friday, May 14, 2010

Vicarious Breakaway, Part II

Jonah has been explaining to me how he does it. Finally, it worked. Hondo thought he won the sprint. In reality, he won the field sprint for third, behind today's breakaway heroes Lloyd and Bertogliati. 150 points for the win would have been nice. But 100 is good too. 80 points from Pozzato, another 70 from Modolo, and it adds up to 250 points and a stage win. Ian and Val tied for second place.

For the fourth consecutive day, Jonah and Adam sit first and second, though Adam has narrowed the gap a bit. And also for the fourth consecutive day, third place overall has changed. Jonny N's time is up, and Olli is now back in the top three.

Full standings and results here.

Tomorrow they hit the strade bianche. That should be fun.

Did Somebody Say Challenge?

Actually, it is Challenges. With a silent S.

Although everything was only recently settled, we have actually been at it for a while. Happily, it seems as if we have ourselves a couple of close races. Here is how things look after Wednesday:

If anyone is interested in evaluating the draft itself, here is the draft order with the number of points earned so far:

The Victors

Vic 0
Chris H 25
Jonny G 67
Brad 31
Adam 57
Josh 31
Tomek 15
Johnny S 25
Ian 16
Luke 0
Unger 0
Thomas 0

The JPs

JP 40
Kevin 63
Craig 20
Mike G 0
Bill 21
Dallas 27
Jonny B 0
Chris D 0
Darryl 0
Penner 6
Larry 26
Matt 19

As for the 2010 FGBC - RRR FGD Challenge, the FGBC won April by a score of 210 - 63. After the first inning, The Dark Side leads 1 - 0.

But RRR currently leads the second inning: 76 - 22. It looks like we might be heading toward a tie.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Thursday Anticipation: Late Edition

The days are flying by right now. How is a guy supposed to keep up? It is not easy. But we do our best.

1) Two more weeks

It has been said before that the FGBC does not have its temporal sensibilities governed by something so formal as seasons. That is not quite right. A better way to put it is that we have slightly different way of organizing the flow of time. Tuesday nights are pretty important. But our season always begins good and proper with the Spring Ride. In other words, it begins in just over 14 days with the annual A & W breakfast at Deacon's Corner on the way out to the Spring Ride.

2) Brandon

The pre-season has been going on for a while now. If you need to get some racing in before the sweetest weekend of the year, it sounds like Brandon will be a good option. More info here.

3) Back 40

Once the season is safely under way, we can turn our attention to other things. Such as the Back 40. Always a good time, even if a slightly crampy one. Pre-registration is open until May 15. Sign up now and you get a t-shirt. Details here.

Vicarious Breakaway

"Born and raised in Pineola, his mama believed in the Pentecost. She got the preacher to say some words so his soul wouldn't get lost." Whenever I happen upon the name of Jerome Pineau, I always start singing that Lucinda Williams song to myself. Four common letters and a subliminal connection is made. It's a long way from Pineau to Pineola, however. And luckily for Jerome, his experience over in Italy today was much happier than the one Lucinda sings about. He won the stage, the best of a breakaway group that managed the rare feat of surviving all the way to the end. This was good news for Jonny N. He was the only person to pick Pineau from the list of stage hunters. And he was rewarded for doing so with the 150 points that comes along with the stage win. Combined with 70 points from Graeme Brown, the Burger Cat champ totalled 220 points to grab the stage win. That gives five different winners in the five stages that have taken place so far. We like it when the happiness is spread around like that. Such a happy group we are, despite our fondness for the dark. Jonah remains hot. He got points from Farrar, Bonnet, and Weylandt, good enough to finish second with 195 points. And Chris O rounded out the podium with a 165 point day. Those who have been paying attention will know that Chris always picks at least one Japanese rider, if possible. This time around, it is Yukiya Arashiro. Arashiro was also in the breakaway today. He went for the win, but didn't make it. He held on to finish third, though. So Chris's loyalty was rewarded.

In the overall race, Jonah's lead continues to grow. It has now crept over the 100 point mark, but just barely. Adam remains in second place, 102 points back of Jonah. But Jonny N has moved into third. He is just one point ahead of Olli. Matt has dropped down to fifth overall, 45 points back of third place.

Full results and standings here.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Vicarious TTT

Matt wins, ahead of Chris D and Miriam. Jonah continues to lead, and even extended it a bit. Adam remains in second overall, but Matt bumps Olli out of the top three.

Full results and standings here.

TNR Report

A stellar evening. The ride was sweet. The post-ride gathering even sweeter. We headed north to meet up with the NK chapter to escort the President back to the klubhaus. He made it without incident, despite passing the chain link fence in which he once got tangled up. The Secretary, however, was less fortunate. He got tangled up with a large branch and had to stop to restore his chain to its rightful place. Still, this was a minor inconvenience and did nothing to dampen the high spirits that were on display.

Upon arrival at the klubhaus, where Bill was waiting for us, we pretty much filled up the table. A final push to overtake the Taverners before the Spring Ride. More importantly, however, there was a palpable sense of nervous excitement in the air as the appointed hour for picking of teams for the 2010 Playground Challenge drew nigh. We began by scrapping the earlier decision that Brad the Impaler and President Penner would serve as captains. A random draw to pick captains seemed more fitting. And besides, the President was a nervous wreck. One can only handle so much responsibility. So we let him off the hook and drew randomly. Vic and JP emerged as the chosen two. This was followed by a brief discussion whereby the criteria for admission to the playground were clarified. Some names were stroked from the original list. Others were added. In the end, everyone was satisfied that the talent pool was just right.

Vic won the coin toss and proceeded to pick with the confidence of an experienced leader. JP was less confident, and had to ask on numerous occasions who some of the people on the list were. But his first pick, KK, was on hand to help him out. A competent assistant captain goes a long way. At the end of the evening, the line in the sand was drawn. This is how it looks:

On one side:

Chris H
Jonny G
Johnny S

On the other side:

Mike G
Jonny B
Chris D

Two even teams of twelve. Let the hostilities commence.


Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Maybe it will stop raining. Maybe.

And maybe President Penner will show up so that we can draw some lines in the sand.

My place at 9:30 pm.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Stage 3

Here is how Jonah picks his teams. I read through the list and he invariably zeroes in on one name and shouts it out. Sometimes with an explanation, sometimes not. This time, he seemed pretty certain about Evans. He hadn't recalled having him before, so figured he should give him a chance. Especially since his favourite rider, Boonen, is not available. He picks Boonen every time, in part because it reminds him of a good weekend he once had in Boone, NC in the fall of 2008--hiking, spelunking, and watching me race cyclocross. He is also partial to riders whose names remind him of explosive devices. Or guns. For example, Bonnet was chosen because he "sounds like bomb." Rohregger somehow reminded him of a gun, though I can't remember why. Nor can I remember why he picked Weylandt. My guess is that he was somehow intrigued by the difficulty I had in pronouncing Wouter. But whatever the reason, it proved to be a good choice. It got him 150 points today. And with Gerdemann and Rohregger chipping in another 130 between them, he ended with 280 points on the day. Good enough to win the stage and take over the overall lead. Jonah is six years old. Cousin Adam was just 5 points back. Second on the day and second overall now too. Queen Val demonstrated that the King and the Prince of vicarious racing aren't the only talented ones in the family. She finished in third place today and moved into the top 10 overall, just ahead of King Andy. Olli sits in third overall.

That was a crazy stage. The GC contenders are all over the place. Looks good for Vino and Nibali so far. Not so good for just about everybody else.

Full results and standings here.

We Have Results

Olli and Paul won the first two stages. But Charlie leads the overall race. It's very close though, with the top three spots separated by just 20 points. Stage 3 is on right now, so this will all change soon.

Full results and standings here.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Leading by Example

That's what Brad the Impaler is doing. He submitted his team for the 2010 FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool in a timely fashion. The President? Not so much. Nice.

No teams from Halberto, David S, and Paddy. That's a first for each of them, I believe. A changing of the guard in vicarious racing land. And some other big time Challenge participants passed on the opportunity to contribute to their team's efforts. No Fraggle, Charlene, or Larry? We were led to believe that Michelle and Artur were going to make their vicarious racing debuts. They did not. But Josh G did. And so did Queen Val. Welcome aboard. Jonny N is back in the pool. That is nice. He looks so hot in those pink speedos.

Teams here. Look them over.

It will take a little while to get everything else set up. Be patient.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

2010 FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool

The FGBC Low Stakes Gambling HQ is pleased to announce the official launch of the 2010 FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool. We will stick with the same system that we typically employ for the vicarious grand tours. It seems to work well. And yes, this will count toward the Challenge. Both versions. So don't let your team(s) down by failing to submit an entry.


1. Pick a team of nine riders from this list. Pay very close attention to the different categories and the criteria governing your selection or riders. Note also that TT guys and climbers kind of count as one combined category, from which you have to pick one from each list. This little bit of information management is especially important this time around, as I will be in Toronto and likely unable to send back screwed up teams for second or third chances. Funny how it always seems to be the same people--cough . . . Fraggle . . . cough. It really isn't that hard. Just read the instructions carefully. And then follow them.

Note that if any rider appears in the wild card list who is also listed in another category, that is a mistake. Mistakes happen. Especially when one is rushed. But you are responsible for spotting them and making sure you don't multiply them. Don't try and beat the system. The system doesn't like that and will find a way to penalize you. Here is the rule: special categories trump wild cards, always.

2. Send your team here before 9 am on Saturday.

3. Any rider who is disqualified from the race forfeits all his points. But only if he's caught during the race. Take your chances.

4. Entry is free and open to all. Feel free to invite others.

5. Points will be awarded as follows:

Individual stages:


For the TTT (is there a TTT this time around? I haven't checked), each rider who finishes with the team will be credited 25% of the points earned by the team for the stage.

Final GC:


Final Points Classification:


Final Mountains Classification:


I think that is all. Any questions?

Thursday Anticipation

1) The Spring Ride is just three weeks away:

2) The 2010 FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool, however, is just hours away.

Rider list coming soon.

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

TNR Report

We rode. It was wet. And cold. Cold we can deal with. But wet and cold is a combination that the FGBC does not endorse. So the ride was a short one. Upon arrival at the klubhaus, we did not receive the hero's welcome we felt we deserved. On the contrary, we were cussed out by some drunk guy on the patio who objected to the fact that we rode our bikes in the rain. We kept our mouths shut. The gloves stayed on. If this is what the early crowd is like, we'll stick to our regular schedule from now on.

Once we got settled, we entertained ourselves for at least an hour rehearsing stories of the President's misfortunes. We also considered the legal intricacies of the poosher's recent vehicular encounter. The FGBC's legal counsel seemed to think he might have a chance. "One person's wrong does not make another's right," is how he put it. And then he went on to spew a bunch of big multisyllabic terms like "contributory negligence." We also spent some time weighing the relative merits of Uma Thurman's curiously sexy nose against Sandra Bullock's rather more straight ahead beauty. Brad Pitt's torso--especially in its Fight Club incarnation--came up for serious consideration as well. We were informed that we are behind a group of cricket players called The Taverners in The Book. They currently have us beat by about $200. But then we were also informed that they are there three times a week. So really, we're kicking their buts. That is appropriate. We also thought it appropriate that we are involved in a competition with a team of crickiteers. Slo-pitch and hockey are so 1990's. We only wish we had known about this earlier.

But the biggest news of the evening is that we have a Challenge. Actually, we have two.

One will more or less follow the classic formula. Except the scoring will be month by month. The winning team for each month scores one point. There are eight months. Which means it could end up in a tie. That would be super sweet. And it would no doubt make for a thrilling windup event. After April, the FGBC leads 1-0.

The other Challenge will be slightly different. It will employ the same basic scoring system as last year. But the makeup of teams has changed radically. Echoing the Apostle Paul, there is no longer FGBC nor RRR for this one. Rather, it's all one big happy pool of riders. Until it gets divided up again into visciously warring factions. Hearkening back to the playgrounds of our youth, we have appointed two captains: Brad the Impaler and President Penner. They will take turns choosing riders until there is nobody left. The beauty of this is that the teams will have the same number of riders. Actually, the beauty will be in watching the draft take place. And it will all happen live on the FGBC blog, starting sometime in the next day or two. The Impaler won the coin toss. He will choose first.

Everyone seemed happy with this decision. It didn't even have to go to a vote. The decision was unanimously approved. And as soon as it was, The Impaler and the Secretary immediately went after each other with the trash talk. This will be especially fun to watch if they should happen to end up on the same team.

The tunes were dialed in. Until about 12:30 am, when they got dialed out. KK left his credit card behind. We took care of it. Anybody need to order anything?

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Yes, we are riding

Even though it is miserable outside. It might be a short ride though. Maybe as short as straight to the klubhaus. We have plenty to talk about. So it wouldn't be the end of the world if we showed up earlier than usual.

Poosher Down

He was vehicularly pooshed from his bike yesterday on his way home from work. He's okay. The bike isn't. It sounds like it's all Morgan's fault.


Tuesday? Already? We will ride.

9:30 pm at my place.

Monday, May 03, 2010


If we were to stick with the original formula, as some behind the scenes RRRers seem to prefer, after the first four events it would look like this:

Fortunately for them, nothing has been settled yet. We might give it another try at the klubhaus on Tuesday. Then again, it might make the most sense to let the Challenge remain a good memory and move on to other things. Change, it's not your enemy. If you want a voice and a vote, if it should come to that, you know where to find us.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

It's been said before...but

Dallas is awesome.

nuff said.

The race was wet and cold and super fun. I was up with the front group until the rock garden. um...wet rocks suck. Apparently so do I when i try to ride over them. Moments earlier i witnessed Josh G. find himself awkwardly embracing the earth. At this point I realized that today was for when I approached the rock garden with caution, I quickly found that this technique did not work well. On the bike, off the bike, on the bike, off the bike...I sucked.

Post rock garden, things did improve, that is, until a brake pad fell off the rear of my bike. This slowed some of the downhill single track sections for me. The two laps of front brakes alone felt slow. they were.

I ran into Dallas on my second lap. His new niner is super special. We rode and chatted for a bit in the twisty stuff. He told jokes of me moving up to expert with him. That guy is funny. He did (in his own Dallas way) motivate me to press on. So I did. Not catching anyone. Not getting caught. biking is hard...and super fun.

oh yah, KK beat me again. I had 6th and he 4th. nice one.

Saturday, May 01, 2010

King Andy, Life Bike Coach

In case you missed it, our man Andy got some much deserved props in today's WFP. Page D9. We love you Andy.

Now, back to the raging discussion below. I love it when the comments go hyper. We have always maintained that talking about bikes and stuff is often better than riding them.