Friday, September 30, 2011

MennoCross Update

The course is coming together nicely. Most of the stakes are in. Taping begins this morning. It will be fast and flowing: part roller coaster, part drag strip. You will be smiling, even as you will be crying inside.

See the MennoCross website for details and updates.

The payouts will not quite be at the level of DarkCross, but they will still be decent. $1100 in cash will be doled out, with $300 (10 deep) for the Cat 1/2 Men, Cat 1/2/3 Women, and Cat 3 Men. The Cat 4 Men and Women are racing for $100 each (5 deep).

For Saturday, just remember that the Dark Side is putting on this race. If something needs to be done (e.g., repair torn tape), do it. If you can't do it yourself, find someone who can.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Thursday Anticipation: Special MennoCross Edition

Only two more sleeps, boys and girls. This will be our last race to organize this season. Let's finish it off right.

Course set-up starts at 1pm today and will continue until the sun goes down. We will be back at it again Friday morning.

Yes, help would be appreciated.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

TNR Report

We previewed the course for MennoCross. It will be a little bit different. But no less awesome.

At the klubhaus, we sat in the patio. It was too nice outside not to. This led to some interesting encounters with strangers. One boasted to us about his friend, a certain velodrome hero of years gone by. He also seemed excited to show off his motorcycle to us. Another fellow offered to do some sexy things with us. We politely declined. And then the northern lights showed up and danced in the sky. The patio closed before we were ready to head home. So we moved inside to finish off the evening, where the Giant entertained us with talk of LeMans and Formula 2 car racing.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Tonight's ride is dedicated to Brad the Impaler--for reasons that may or may not become clear as we make our way into the wee hours of the morning.

9:30 pm at my place.

Bring a cx rig if you can.

One last sock post

Most of the socks have been distributed to their owners - I hope they're being enjoyed. Please check the original post. A strike-through indicates paid, but I may have forgotten a quickly passed twenty - or been confused by an indirect payment - here or there.

Paddy, I now have your new address via FB, so unless you're putting in a cameo around these parts sometime soon, I'll get yours in the mail next week.

There are some extras, so if you missed out or want more, let either the DL or myself know. Sartorial Department out.

 P.S. The Hipster has raised the issue of a new wool jersey. Expressions of interest appreciated.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Tour de Whidbey

As part of my ongoing work to lure FGBC colors to the West Coast for fall riding (or any season), here is a couple of photos of the geography to be enjoyed riding the San Juan Islands. Today I rode 70 miles as part of the Tour de Whidbey. The elevation charts from the ride show what I now know, that the early 70's PX-10 I rebuilt this year is not set up with climbing in mind.

The PX-10 project

Oak Harbor and Olympic Mountains

Whidbey Island western shore looking out to the Strait of Juan de Fuca

Friday, September 23, 2011

Thursday Anticipation: Still Hung Over From DarkCross Edition

The 2011 MBCX Season continues on Sunday with The Barrier.

Read the Race Bible to find all the relevant details. And make sure you know which race you're riding in by taking a look at the revised category lists. If the numbers keep growing like this, The Tenor may get his wish for a Clydesdale Category yet.

Good times.

TNR Report

It started off on a sombre note. "Hummelt Hockey is dead," sang The Tenor. There was silence. Maybe even a few tears. This is where it all began. What will winter TNR's look like without Hummelt Hockey? Will the numbers swell? Will it all fall to the ground with a dull, deathly thud now that the roots are no longer there to keep us securely anchored? We will find out in a few weeks.

The mood was not fit for riding. The cold wind and rain didn't help either. So we mustered up our best dirge and marched mournfully toward the klubhaus.

Happily, the mood was lighter once the Dark started to flow. We put Hummelt Hockey behind us and commenced with the DarkCross debrief. Our man from the Speedway showed up and we came up with a handful of ideas that will make DarkCross II even bigger and better. But it would be inappropriate to reveal those now.

Eddy was there, singing and dancing in his chair.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Speedway on Thursday?

Our friends at the Speedway thought DarkCross was awesome! So awesome that they showed up at the klubhaus last night for the unofficial debrief. They also want to say thank-you to us for throwing down a kick-ass event. So they have offered us tickets to this Thursday's race. Send me an email by 5pm today if you want to go.

This limited time offer is open to any and all members of the FGBC, RRR, and to anyone who helped out with the event in any way (volunteers, sponsors, race announcers, commissaires, DJs, etc.).

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


Yes, we will ride. There will more than likely be a little reminiscing about DarkCross.

9:30 pm at my place.

DarkCross Report

Once there was a bike club. Some called them the FGBC. Others called them the Dark Side. Still others called them things that are best left unmentioned. They weren't always agreed on the importance of racing bikes, or even riding them. But they were of single mind when it came to the question of good times. One day this bike club discovered cyclocross. It was at this point that they realized good times and racing bikes were not necessarily incompatible. So they took their commitment to good times and started organizing races. First there was Southern Cross and its pregnant podium girls. Next came MennoCross. And then they got together with some friends and came up with DarkCross. It was awesome! So dark. And so electrifying. What will they do next? Stay tuned to find out.

Here are some pictures to round out the story:

The best thing about setting up a course is figuring out how to take a chunk of land and turn it into a roller coaster.

Pounding posts is not ideal work for short people. Fortunately, the Giant showed up later in the evening.

The kids were alright.

And the Farrell Brothers were more than alright:

The Giant had fun playing Super Fan:

The B Race was enormous.

Cousin Adam's race started better than it ended. For the second week in a row. While the FOKK chugs along, it has become clear that it is definitely not the FOCA.

The Fraggle was back in action.

So was Unger.

The CycleChick chose the right socks.

Monday, September 19, 2011

DarkCross is Done

That was awesome! Good job, boys and girls. It will take some time to get everything processed and posted. But others have already begun to digest the event. Search around the interwebs and you will find it. We will try to gather together everything in one place. Eventually.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Starcrossed Photos

Enjoyed a 60 mile round trip ride out to Lake Sammamish for Starcrossed. Very different feel than watching the race after dark at the Marymoor Velodrome. This track favored the riders who could put the hammer down on the grass track and traverse the beach.

Bart Wellens (BEL) crossing the finish line.

Katerina Nash (CZE) dominated the women's race.

Great race review at

Saturday, September 17, 2011

It's Go Time

See you all at the Speedway.

This is going to be fun.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Thursday Anticipation: Special Kick-Ass Edition

Giddy up, boys and girls. The next few weeks are going to be awesome. Very awesome. We have two cyclocross races to put on in the next 15 days. First up, of course, is DarkCross. Yes, there has been a lot of talk about this one. An event this big can't be described adequately without spilling a few gallons of ink. But lest you think everything has already been said, you should know that we still have a few surprises up our sleeve. You'll have to show up on Saturday to find out what they are.

For now, just enjoy another look at the Sweetest CX Poster in the World.

Then surf on over to the DX website to see what else the CycleChick and her gang have come up with.

With all the talk about DarkCross, it would be easy to forget about MennoCross. But that would be an unforgivable oversight. Because MennoCross is awesome in its own way. As far as the course goes, once again it will be as much a roller coaster ride as as we can make it. But we have a few new features to throw in, just to change things up and keep it interesting. Plus a new location for the start/finish line. Yes, the bunker and stone pit will be back again. And we will stick with the plan of alternating the direction in which the stone pit is ridden from one year to the next. This year it's clockwise. In case you haven't ridden it both ways, it's the harder, more sluggish of the two. That's because you get to ride the deeper, smaller stones last, after you've already lost all the momentum you carried into the stone pit.

Also new for this year is free childcare. So bring the kids, watch them race, and then let them play on the bouncy castles while you do your own race. The course will pass right by the children's festival, so you can check in to see how they're doing each lap.

But perhaps the most significant defining characteristic of this year's MennoCross will be the food. In good Mennonite fashion, there will be lots of it. Not only will there be faspa during the race. There will also be a barbeque after it's done. One race, two meals. Perfect.

And last but not least, there is also a poster. After all the talk of darkness and the puerile posturing that typically goes along with it, we are happy to serve up a little sunshine.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

TNR Report

We found a new venue for a potential off-the-grid cyclocross race. Call it Post-Industrial Wasteland Cross. Or perhaps Concrete Cross.

The Secretary and the Impaler skipped the ride and drove to the klubhaus. Some thought they were the wise ones. Our fingers and toes did not approve of summer's unexpected decampment. They froze pretty quickly. But KK and the Hipster showed up with a couple of pizzas to warm us up. And then the Hipster entertained us with stories from his recent visit to Quebec and Montreal for the two Pro Tour races.

We did a bunch of DarkCross business. And enjoyed some rugby on the TV and a solid night of tunes.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Another posterless TNR. Two weeks in a row. But this week will not involve another poster blitz. Two weeks of that was enough. We need to go for a bike ride. KK and I learned of an intriguing new site that might be worth a visit. Bring your good lights.

We also need to spend some time finalizing things for DarkCross.

9:30 pm at my place.

Vicarious Racing Updates

King Andy won the 2011 FGBC Vuelta Espana Pool. I was second and KK was third. Full results and overall standings here.

Andy continues to lead the Fall Classics Pool as well. But Ian won the two races in Quebec and Montreal to move into second place overall. Sandwiched in between those two races was Paris - Bruxelles. It marked a dubious first in the history of vicarious racing: goose eggs laid by every single team. Full results and overall standings here.

CrossVegas goes down tomorrow night. It should be a good one, especially if Bart Wellens karate kicks someone in the gut. But unfortunately, the 2011-12 FGBC CX Pool will not be ready in time. So treat it as an opportunity to do some advance scouting. We will get things started eventually.

Monday, September 12, 2011

It Takes a Village

. . . to put on the sweetest cyclocross race/party in the world. The DarkCross Planning Committee is meeting tonight to finalize all the details. One of those details is the question of volunteers. We need people for registration, marshalling, and other race day tasks. The goal is to have more volunteers so that the time commitment is relatively short and painless. Let us know if you can help out with an email or a comment below. Family and friends are welcome too.

MudFest Report

Good times, boys and girls. I'd forgotten how much it could totally suck and be awesome all at the same time. Thanks to Hal, Ian, and the OCC for getting the season kicked off on the right foot. We are up next with DarkCross.

Token photos:

Stefan Isfeld has lots of photos too. So do the Taints of Steel.

These two sum it up nicely:

Friday, September 09, 2011

Thursday Anticipation: Late Friday Edition

Cyclocross season starts this weekend! How awesome is that? The local season starts Sunday with Mudfest in St Adolphe. The UCI season starts on Saturday with Nittany Lion Cross in PA. We are not ready with the 2011-12 FGBC CX Pool. Hopefully we can be ready for CrossVegas on Wednesday.

There is lots of important information on the local scene over at CXMB, including an announcement about the 2011 Season Pass. Be sure to surf on over there and read everything.

If you are not already over the moon with excitement, do not worry. Tatyana Storm can get you there.

The King and I

I won a couple of stages to take the lead over King Andy. But it's still his race to lose. He's just too well placed on the GC. We both have Mollema. But he has Wiggins sitting in third place, which should be plenty to seal the deal.

Two more stages to go. Here's hoping Wiggo finds a way to shit the bed.

Full results and overall standings here.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

TNR Report

Another working TNR. We were a busy bunch. Many things were accomplished.

The VP Style showed up to dole out some socks and collect cash. Everyone was happy.

Then we split up and did a second round of the DarkCross outdoor poster blitz.

At least two of the groups bumped into this fellow pilgrim. He called himself the Bike Marauder. He said the handlebars were made out of old shopping carts. Clearly, he is not concerned with how much his bike weighs.

It just so happened that the last poster was posted on a board outside our favourite parking garage. So we rode up. And hung out at the Hipster changed a flat.

At the klubhaus, we pretty much solved everything related to cyclocross. Let us know if you have any questions. The conversation was so gripping that I can't even remember a single tune. At the north end of the table, they were talking about something else.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011


There is no poster this week. But we will still ride. The Secretary will make his long anticipated return. Once again, he will attempt to debut his new cx bike. He tried a couple of weeks ago. But it broke down on its maiden voyage. Hopefully the President will be there with tales about his battles with the 11-12 year old set at the Laddie's Loppet this past weekend in Maplelag.

There is lots of cyclocross related stuff to talk about. We might do another DarkCross poster blitz. Bring your staple guns, just in case KK shows up with more posters.

And there will be socks. Lots of socks. Wool ones. Don't forget to bring Matt your money. I'm sure he would not say no if someone offered to buy him a beer as well. He put a lot of work into this. $10 per pair. See the list below if you forgot what you ordered. And if you forgot to place an order, bring money anyway. We have some extras.

9:30 pm at my place.

SJITW in the WFP

Page 7 of the Sports section. But for those of you who don't like paper, you can read it online here.

Just one thing: Lindsay, there are no lights allowed. We will supply the lights. You just ride and be your awesome self.

Monday, September 05, 2011

Stages 13-15

KK was first on stage 13, ahead of Greg and a gaggle of others.

Andy took stage 14. Kim was second and Greg third.

Kim's team garnered the most points on the queen stage up the Angliru. Andy and I rounded out the podium on that one.

That climb up the Angliru looked positively terrifying. If you missed it yesterday, grab yourself a beverage and watch the final 8 kms. It will make living on the prairies look like a stroke of good fortune.

In the overall race, King Andy has taken over the lead. He has 1879 points. I am in second place, 61 points back. And KK sits in third overall. He is 108 points off the lead. Val is holding the lanterne rouge, so the King and the Queen have bookended the race.

Full results and overall standings here.

September Long Ride Report

First, Jonny G organized a cx race and clinic for the kids.

Then we rode the sweetest singletrack this province has to offer. Thanks Tinker.

It was very, very awesome. Except for maybe the burrs on our new socks.