Thursday, December 19, 2013

more than vaguely familiar

somehow I think we'd get on with these folk... Minneapolis isn't that far away...

All-City: Bandit Cross from Brendan Lauer on Vimeo.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Did Somebody Say CX Worlds?

We should really be holding a fundraiser to help get ourselves to Hoogerheide for CX Worlds. But we're a lazy bunch. So we may as well help Mike and Willem go in our place.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

The President's Colnago...

will surely show up in the next video...

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Nordic Cross Cup Race #1 Report

Nordic Cross is back after a two year hiatus, and we kicked it off properly last night with an alley cat. Who will claim victory in perhaps the most illustrious cross series of all time? Who will rise to the challenge of defending their title as Nordic Cross champion? Does anyone even remember who the last champion was? Nordic Cross is less about winning and more about having a great time to pass the winter. And good times were had. There were beer pickups, chip pickups, beers on a bridge, some confusion around which bridge to drink beers on, apparently a lot of crashing, and a flaming barrier obstacle. here are a few photos of the event..

Tallying the results turned out to be a bit tricky, so here we go... At one point someone asked 'who won', and I heard G shout out 'I did', so there you have it. G wins the first round of Nordic Cross. After that, it's as best as I can remember.
 G - 25 points
JP - 22 points
Daniel - 20 points
Kevin - 18 points
Brad - 17 points
Craig - 16 points
Juan - 15 points
Chris - 14 points
Graham - 13 points
Vic - 12 points
Andrea - 11 points
Anna - 10 points
Mark - 9 points

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

TNR - NORDIC CROSS 2013 Kick-off

We've got something special planned for tonight's TNR.  Come out and have fun ripping up the sloppy streets of Winnipeg.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


This was left on the table. Perfectly tasty. And no, the President was not in attendance. Looks like we have 'another one' in the club, or it was an accident.

Let's assume it was an accident.

Name of guilty(?) withheld until cross-examination is complete.

TNR Minutes, and, Nordic Cross is on!

Dear Friends,

Winter is here. The TNR is love. Bikes were ridden by quite a few. Plans emerged.

In particular, Nordic Cross is, remarkably, taking shape. With no small amount of cross-table yelling, this is what emerged:

NC1 - Dec 3 (Next Tuesday) - The Hipster

NC2 - Jan 7 - The Impaler - Garbage Hill and Barley Bros (an over-priced, under-Klubhaus-classed establishment in this writer's opinion, but everyone should go there twice)

1st Special Event!!! Barn Cross - Anna is on it - date TBA

2nd Special Event!!! 24hr Studio Cross - Feb 1 - The Energizer has suggested bigger speakers are better... and will back that up in an acoustically controlled environment on the edge of the historic exchange district. No concrete floor, no gas fumes (thank-you very much Johnny M). Thankfully, we have two full months to kind of agree on a movie theme.

3rd Special Event!!! Feb 15 - Fire and beers at the Cricket's. Very possibly no riding at all. Maybe a drive out to an Actif Epica site to watch and heckle. Maybe not.

NC3 - March TBA - Hot Legs

While conversation raged, one item was returned to a number of times. Dave is fascinated by the weight distribution of the genre of cycle known so gentile-like, as the 'fatbike'. (Looks as classy as it sounds, but a topic of discussion nonetheless.) Apparently it's more 50-50 than a cross or mtn bike... so in pressing an old mtn frame into 'fatbike' service, an extension of the rear triangle would be necessary to get that floaty weight distro so desired by the 'fatbike' aficionado. Good luck Dave.

The Awesome One was fairly awesome in proposing toasts. Sadly, not in Hutterite-speak.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Anatomy of a Sprint

The J-Train gave it everything he had at at Southern Cross. And came up just short. Photos courtesy of Marc LeBrun.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Monday, September 16, 2013

DarkCross 2013 - first video

Crooked Bros. Matt and Jesse shot the footage, our own JP edited and applied the old skool looks.  Sweet.

DarkCross2013 from dnb on Vimeo.

Wednesday, September 04, 2013


Woot. No, double woot. Darkcross on All Hail the Black Market.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Anyone feel like a CycleChick-esque project?

70's Rossin Club Racer

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

TNR Report

Well, it was kinda like this video honestly.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Altona Gravel Grinder

The ABES and the OCC are putting on a gravel grinder this weekend in Altona. Perhaps more importantly, the bike riding portion of the event will be followed by a party in the Krahn Barn. The Dark Red Side will be well-represented. You should be there too.

Details here.

Monday, July 22, 2013

2013 TdF Pool - Final Results

We are back in the office and the Vicarious Racing Dept. is buzzing with energy.

The final three stage winners with Vanessa, Jonathan, and Jay.

In the overall race, Jonathan's dream tour continued right to the end. He was either first or tied for first in each of the post-race bonus points categories. In the end, he won by over 800 points. And Randy made a last-second move to grab second overall. He finished 13 points ahead of me. And Val was just 12 points behind. So just like the real race, at least we had a close battle for second place.

In the (first annual?) EMU vs. CMU Vicarious Racing Challenge, the victory went south of the border. Team EMU pretty much had their way with Team CMU, winning easily by an overall score of 22403 to 17534.

Full results and overall standings here.

Thanks for playing everybody. That was fun. Let's do it again next year.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Stage 18

Everything's coming up roses for Jonathan at the 2013 Vicarious Tour de France. He has Christophe Riblon as his TT man and Moreno Moser as one of his stage hunters. His climber is Quintana. And his two GC Men are Froome and Talansky. Those five guys combined to score 445 points for Jonathan and give him his second consecutive stage win. Well done Jonathan! Randy and Val tied for second on the day. They each had 345 points.

Jonathan's lead in the overall races looks pretty safe. It's up over 300 points now.

EMU no doubt continues to hold a big edge over CMU in their little side competition. But I'm too lazy to bother adding that up right now.

Full results and overall standings here.

Please note that this may be the last update until the end of the race. We are heading out to Falcon Trails for the 24 Hours of Falcon Ridge. Those EMU punks should really be there so we could settle this on the bike.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Stage 17

Big win for Jonathan. He took the stage with 355 points, thanks to Froome, Talansky, Quintana, and Kwiatkowski.  Dan, Mike, Miriam, and Randy tied for second. They each had 285 points on the day.

Jonathan's lead in the overall race is now over 200 points. Anna is still sucking it up at the bottom. She has 890 points, or exactly 2298 points less than Jonathan.

The CMU vs. EMU Vicarious Racing Challenge has absolutely no sense of suspense whatsoever:

EMU - 12611
CMU - 10984

Full results and overall standings here.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Stage 16

Matt wins the stage. Jonah, Leonie, and JP tied for second.

In the overall race, Jonathan extended his lead to 99 points. At the bottom end of the standings, Donna had a good day. She rocketed up eight spots in the standings and left Anna holding the lanterne rouge.

In the CMU vs. EMU Vicarious Racing Challenge, KK has moved ahead of Ben. But EMU still holds a commanding lead:

EMU - 11514
CMU - 10329

Full results and overall standings here.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Stage 15

Jonathan takes the win on Ventoux and jumps into the overall lead. With Froome and Quintana on his squad, it will be hard to catch him.

Six riders tied for second on the day. That is a lot. But there were even more who laid goose eggs. 16 teams came up empty on one of the biggest days of the Tour. Ouch.

Donna has freed Chris N of the burden of carrying the lanterne rouge. Anna is only 13 points from doing the same thing for Donna.

In the CMU vs. EMU Vicarious Racing Challenge, Team EMU has stretched its lead to 1145 points.

EMU - 10999
CMU - 9854

Full results and overall standings here.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

EMU vs CMU Vicarious Racing Challenge

After stage 14, EMU leads by 845 points:

EMU - 10179
CMU - 9334

Stages 13 & 14

King Andy won stage 13. And Steve took stage 14.

In the overall race, things are heating up. Jonathan, no doubt emboldened by the recently announced CMU vs. EMU Vicarious Racing Challenge, is now just 16 points back of the overall lead. And the Halfrican has moved into third. For real this time.

Full results and overall standings here.

Results for the CMU vs. EMU Vicarious Racing Challenge are coming soon.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Stage 12

With the show of Germanic force at this year's Tour de France (5 wins in 12 stages), it is surprising that Cousin Thomas and the Secretary are not doing better in The Pool. Their teams are usually stacked with Deutschlanders. Too bad Andreas Kloden is no longer the GC threat he once was. And where are Bernard Kohl and Stefan Schumacher when you really need them?

Today's stage was won by, well, me. In reality, it was Sagan, Lobato, Quintana, Kwiatkowski, and Impey who did all the hard work. But don't worry Anna, any hint of conspiracy will disappear soon. Between Pinot's fear of descents and J-Rod's less than awesome form, Jonathan and his dog named Froome will no doubt catch and pass me by the time the final allotment of GC points is distributed.

Mike G and Val tied for second on the day.

As for the overall race, we begin with a bit of revisionist history. It turns out there was some confusion in the spreadsheet between Dan and Tony Martin. Clearly the spreadsheet does not pay attention to teeth. In any case, Ben was not credited with all the points he deserved. And Brad got some points from Dan Martin that he did not deserve, while at the same time missing out on the points from Tony Martin's TT win that he should have gotten. It all gets a bit confusing at times. But everything has been fixed now and the standings from stage 8 onward have all been updated. The most important change is that Ben is in third overall. And the Halfrican never deserved the kudos he got for being there. He has not been higher than fourth. Sorry for the confusion.

The Awesome One now has the lanterne rouge. No bit of revisionist history is going to undo that.But lucky from him, a number of others are still lurking close by. It will no doubt change hands several more times yet before all is said and done.

Full results and overall standings here.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Stage 11

The Halfrican won today's vicarious ITT and moves up into third overall. Todd finished second on the day. Ben and Chris O tied for third.

In the overall race, Jonathan is now just 16 points from the overall lead. And Anna managed successfully to pass of the lanterne rouge to Cousin Thomas.

Most importantly, nobody in the TdF Pool had urine thrown at them.

Full results and overall standings here.

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Stage 10

Eryn edges Donna for the win. Chris D and Jonny B tie for third on the stage.

In the overall race, Randy bumped Jonny G off the last step of the podium and moves up into third overall. And Anna retains the lanterne rouge for a second consecutive stage.

All of this could change, however, if the race jury decides to relegate Cavendish for that shoulder check.

Full results and overall standings here.

Sunday, July 07, 2013

Stages 7-9

The last three stage winners were as follows:

Stage 7: Jonathan L-T
Stage 8: KK
Stage 9: Brad E

Note also the revolving door at the bottom end of the overall standings. Anna holds the vicarious lanterne rouge for now. But it could well change hands again tomorrow.

Full results and overall standings here.

Thursday, July 04, 2013

Stage 6

No time for chit chat. Everything you need to know is here.

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Stage 5


Stage 4

Thanks to some feats of spreadsheet wizardry, we have results for the vicarious TTT.

Mike G edged out Val and the Secretary for the win.

Full results and overall standings here.

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Technical Difficulties

We have a problem. Or in the parlance of our times, it appears something is fucked.

Usually in a TTT, individual results are posted along with team results. Only riders who finish with the team get the time of the team. Those who come in on their own are credited with the time they cross the line. This point was driven home today by the sad case of Ted King, who found himself eliminated by just 7 seconds and some less than transparent time keeping methods. Today, however, no such individual results were published. Just the team results and the individual times for the GC.

In any case, this is an issue for the TdF Pool. Unless we find the individual results for today's stage, we can't figure out the vicarious racing equivalent. At least not without putting in a lot more work than I'm willing to do.

If the results don't get published, our best bet is to subtract the overall times for each rider after yesterday's stage from the overall times for each rider after today's stage. If it were that simple, we'd have results already. But in order to do this, we need to find a way to translate one time format (e.g., 12h 47' 24") into a single number, say total number of seconds. If there are any Excel whizzes out there who can create a script that will do this automatically, please let us know.

Monday, July 01, 2013

Stages 1-3

We have results, finally! The first three stages were all won by charter members of the Dark Side. Have we finally figured out this vicarious racing thing? Almost certainly not.

At the other end of the standings, six teams have yet to score a point. Each of them is already 585 points off the overall lead. They'll no doubt be happy to leave Corsica behind.

Full results and overall standings here.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Tour de Spreadsheet

In the end we made it to 58 teams. So it'll take something special to win it. See all the players listed below.

One of the nice things about the new system is that it makes it much easier to share all the teams. Check out the competition and see just how many people picked Froome, Cavendish, and Sagan here.

The Vicarious Racing HQ is busy preparing the spreadsheet. That should be done by the end of the day. Thanks for your patience.

Friday, June 28, 2013

TdF Pool Entry Watch

Update [9:12 pm] - And the Secretary brings us to 44. With help from Jay, Donna, Auckland, Ian, and Randy. Only 10 hours or so left to scour the interwebs for sleepers.

Update [4:13 pm] - We have reached 38. Marc, Miriam, Jonah, Marcus, Dallas, and Leonie have submitted teams.

Update [1:04 pm] - We are up to 32 teams now. The Hipster, Jason, Paul K, Cousin Thomas, Charlene, and KK are in.

As of 10am this morning, there are 26 teams in the pool. There are also a good number of vicarious racing rookies. Welcome to you all. We will try to be nice. But being nice is hard. Almost as hard as math.

There is still lots of room. For those who are motivated by peer pressure, here's a list of the teams so far. Check back throughout the day to see who else has joined.

Matt H
Anna S
David S
Karel B
Peter D
Chris H
Chris N
Jonathan L-T
Jonny B
Graham W
Joe H
Stephen G
Chris D
Chris O
Ali A
Jonny G
Ben B
Terry M
Chris A
Paul S
Vic P
Catherine S
Brad E
Charlie C
Nate B
Jordan L
Mark R
Jason S
Paul K
Cousin Thomas
Charlene G
Marc L
Miriam H
Jonah H
Marcus H
Dallas S
Leonie T
Jay S
Donna H
Auckland L
Ian H
Randy H
Darryl N-B
Merle H
Adam B
Todd M
Andy L
Val L
Jenna S
Daniel E
Vanessa P
Dan L
Mike G
Andrea T
Olli H
Rachel H

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

TdF Pool is Open

The pool is open for business. Good luck and have fun!

Please note that there are a few small changes this year.

First, teams will be submitted a bit differently. Don't worry, it's easy. And it will make all of us a lot happier.

Second, instead of the usual pattern of picking one Stage Hunter and two Wild Cards, we'll be picking two Stage Hunters and one Wild Card. It just seems to make more sense.

The Rules

1. Choose a team of nine riders from the Rider List based on the criteria listed below. Submit your teams by using this form. Your team must be submitted before the race starts on Saturday.

2. Entry into the pool is free. There are no prizes. Other than bragging rights and a sense of smug satisfaction.

3. The pool is open to anyone. Feel free to invite others to participate.

4. Points will be awarded based on the scoring system below (scroll down).

5. Any rider who is disqualified from the race for a doping violation forfeits all his points. If he survives the race and gets busted later, you get to keep your points.

6. Trash-talking and other forms of vicarious racing banter is strongly encouraged. This is best accomplished via The Twitter. We are @Dark_Red_Racing

Picking Riders

1. Pick two GC riders. Their combined values (the numbers to the right of the riders name) must add up to five or more.

2. Pick two sprinters. Combined values must add up to five or more.

3. TT Men and Climbers - Pick one rider from each list. Their combined values must add up to five or more.

4. Pick any two Stage Hunters. No math involved in this one. Yay!

5. Pick one Wild Card. Again, no math.


Individual stages: 150 125 100 90 80 75 70 65 60 55 50 45 40 35 30 25 20 15 10 5

Final GC: 600 500 400 350 300 275 250 225 200 175 150 135 120 105 90 75 60 45 30 15

Final Points Classification: 120 90 60 40 20

Final Mountains and Classification: 120 90 60 40 20

Final Young Rider Classification: 120 90 60 40 20

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Tour de France Pool

It's coming soon. Very soon. As soon as Garmin confirms their roster.

Waiting is hard.

Sunday, June 23, 2013


It goes down this Wednesday at BHP. Good times are guaranteed.

In case you've forgotten how it works, all your questions will be answered here.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

TNR Report: Rumble at the Dump

They call him the Energizer Bunny. I think it's because of his predilection for dressing up in furry pink outfits. But it may also have something to do with his seemingly limitless energy. Either way, he put on quite a show at the Dump last night, winning six consecutive head-to-head drag races up the hill on his way to claiming the overall title: Drag Queen of the Dump.

Juan Eppstein has no quit in him either. And he also put on a show of his own. First, by demonstrating the rather awkward way he gets himself psyched up for racing.

And then for his equally interesting post-race purging ritual.

Jonny G also did well. He was the overall Drag Queen the last time we did this. And he proved it was no fluke by climbing his way into the final race against The Bunny this time around. But the three consecutive races he had to win to get there took quite toll, especially since The Bunny got to rest during that whole stretch. So the grand finale wasn't quite the nail biting battle we were expecting. But still, the VP Good Times gave the night's festivities two thumbs up, even if he had to lie down on the tarmac to do so.

As for the rest of us, let's just say that hill climbing is hard. Way harder than it looks on TV.

Friday, June 07, 2013

TNR Report - Welcome to Hoogerland

While it may not be Tuesday, or even Thursday for that matter, Friday is as good a day as any to reflect on the grand event that was the TNR. It was on the NTBFW* decree of both the Impaler and the Dark Lord that we pedalled ourselves directly to the Klubhaus for an urgent debrief of the arguably grander event that was the Gran Fondo Catskills with none other than the Honorary Captain.
This was good news for The Hipster who was portaging some rather delicate cargo.
What occurred in the Catskills was nothing short of epic, with not one, but TWO near death experiences for the DFL. The first was a near miss of being completely pancaked by a two car collision mere feet away from the group as they stood on the shoulder of the road. Clearly hillbillies are not accustomed to the sight of men in spandex.

The next day, perhaps in an attempt to win the attention of the Honourary Captain, His Lordliness did his best Johnny Hoogerland impression and rode into a fence (of the non-barbed variety) whilst avoiding a crash that happened right in front of him fifteen kilometres into the ride.
As you can imagine, the remaining one hundred and forty-five kilometres were powered by enough rage to fuel every illegal moonshine still in the Catskills.

Thankfully the Power of the Dark Side prevailed, and, like the hipsters eggs, the DFL returned home safely.

Carnage photo and catchy headline courtesy of Lesli Cohen, Editor in Chief of

*Not To Be fucked With

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Polemica! Or, Not So Fast, Randy

First of all, this is not 'Nam. This is vicarious racing. There are rules. Specifically, there is Rule #3. It reads as follows:
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.
Let us also remember that a certain Danilo Di Luca was tossed from the race last Friday. He was caught with EPO in flowing through his veins for, like, the millionth time.

This should have led us to determine which, if any, of the teams in the pool had selected the notorious Killer. But we did not. We were at the Spring Ride. We have gone back and checked now though. It turns out Jonny G chose Di Luca. No surprise there. He's always had a special spot in his heart for the shadier types. But there was one other team who had Di Luca on its roster--Randy's! This means that both Jonny and Randy forfeit the 270 points the Killer earned before he was busted. And here's where it gets really interesting. Before we caught the mistake, Randy's margin of victory over Prince Dan was 244 points. So with the application of Rule #3, it turns out that Dan, not Randy, is the champion of the 2013 FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool--by just 26 points. Crazy stuff!

Sorry about the confusion, boys and girls. And thanks to King Andy and his eagle eye for drawing attention to this rather significant oversight. It takes a village.

Check out the corrected final standings here.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Spring Ride 2013

Giro Pool Wrap-up

As expected, Randy held on for the win. Congratulations Randy!

The final podium looked like this:

Randy - 5006 points
Dan - 4762
Chris H - 4377

Full results and overall standings here.

Thanks for playing everyone. That was fun. We'll do it again in about a month.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Stage 18

Just as Nibali did to Evans in the real race, Randy beat back pesky Prince Dan by winning the vicarious uphill ITT. He placed four riders inside the top 20 and racked up an impressive 340 points. I was second on the stage with 320 points and Dan was another 5 points back.

One small change in the overall standings. King Andy drops out of the top three and is replaced by me.

Full results and overall standings here.

Due to the Spring Ride, there will be no more updates until after the weekend. Thanks for understanding.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

A Report From the President

It almost reads like a poem:
WE were almost F'd
The K & H [sic] did a tally for the WRONG group...
spoke with LEE this AM as to why no  returned call.
ALL IS good
Nothing is F'd
It will all be ready tomorrow for anyone i.e FGBC to pick up.
In other words: The Beer is Going to Ingolf. All is well.

Stage 17

More exciting downhill racing. Too bad Sir Bradley and his utter lack of descending skillz quit the race. That would be fun to watch.

As for the vicarious race, it was another stage win for the DFL--the fifth one of the race. This time it came courtesy of some guys named Giovanni and Fabio. In the Giro, it is never a bad idea to go with dudes whose names end with vowels. Which is but another way of saying that you should look for names that sound like they could be characters in trashy romance novels. David was second on the stage. Andy and Karel shared third place.

Dan has Visconti as well and Randy does not. So Randy's lead in the overall race got a bit smaller today. His lead over Dan is now down to 299 points. If the Prince of Vicarious Racing can convince Visconti to win two more stages, they'll be even. King Andy remains in third overall.

Full results and overall standings here.

TNR Report

The annual Spring Dogfest. It happens on the final Tuesday before the Spring Ride. Except that it almost didn't happen this year. But then KK took to the Twitters to remind us that this is what we do. And Brad the Impaler stepped in for Juan Eppstein and provided the venue. The only thing missing was dogs. And the Secretary. But the Awesome One grabbed the reins and, with a series of rather bold claims, made sure it was a night to be remembered. Though perhaps not by himself.

The Northwest Passage was traversed. The Hipster's birthday party was recounted and the CycleChick's birthday was commemorated.

There was some talk about Spring Ride details. But mostly we will wing it, just like we always do. Just be at Deacon's Corner on Friday at 9:30 am and all will be fine.

"I believe in the seventies" was his opening line.
It went downhill from there.

There was fire. But surprisingly few dogs.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Stage 16

Well, that was exciting. The real race, that is. The vicarious race, less so. Unless your name is Dan. He won it, with 170 points thanks largely to Tanel Kangert.

Full results and overall standings here.

Randy still leads the overall and looks pretty untouchable, with Nibali as his main GC guy. Dan sits in second overall and is probably the only legitimate threat to Randy's vicarious pink jersey. But Dan also has Nibali, not to mention 4 other riders he shares with Randy. So if he's going to make a move, it'll have to come from Kangert, Visconti, Pozzovivo, or Blythe.

For the record, here are their two teams:


Vincenzo Nibali
Damiano Caruso
Mark Cavendish
Giacomo Nizzolo
Mauro Santambrogio
Maxim Belkov
Danilo DiLuca
Peter Stetina
Wilco Kelderman


Vincenzo Nibali
Damiano Caruso
Mark Cavendish
Adam Blythe
Domenico Pozzovivo
Tanel Kangert
Giovanni Visconti
Peter Stetina
Wilco Kelderman

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Stage 15

Crappy weekend for riding bikes. But at least there's vicarious racing. Stage 15 details here.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Stages 12-14

Everything you need to know is right here.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

TNR Report

Big turnout. Good times. Rode the Silver Ave Bike Expressway. Sat outside for a while at the Klubhaus.

1. Hot Legs Dave gets asked about the fancy (not) paint job on his bike and he responds by throwing it in a very large ditch. That seemed to mark an appropriate time to head back to the klubhaus.

Dave retrieving his bike from the ditch.

2. Watching the plane come in.

where the planes go.

Stage 11

Charlene wins it, ahead of Karel and David.

No big changes in the GC.

Full results and overall standings here.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Stage 10

More bad news for Hesjedal, more good news for the Dark Lord. Is there a pattern here? I hope not.

There was good news for Randy and Dan too. Randy finished second on the stage and pushed his lead in the overall race up over 200 points. Dan was third on the stage and moved into second overall, bumping Andy down a spot to third.

Full results and overall standings here.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Stage 9

It was a bad day to be Ryder Hesjedal. It was a good day to be the Dark Lord.

Full results and overall standings here.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Stage 8

Ben and Dan tied for the win with 230 points apiece. Karel had 170 points to grab the last spot on the podium.

Randy still leads the overall race. He has 1191 points. Joe is still in second with 1173 points. But Dan has moved into third overall, just 1 point behind Joe. The top three are separated by just 19 points.

Full results and overall standings here.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Stage 7

Randy won the stage and moved into the overall lead. Vic was second on the stage and jumped into fourth overall. Joe rounded out the podium and held onto second place on the GC. He's just 18 points back of Randy. Leonie has dropped down to third overall, another 60 points back.

Full results and overall standings here.

It sure would be interesting to be a fly on the wall in the Team Sky bus this evening.

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Stage 6

KK, Miriam, and Randy shared the win. They each wound up with 215 points.

Joe has moved ahead of Leonie and now sits atop the overall standings. Dan is back into third overall.

Full results and overall standings here.

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Stage 5

John Degenkolb and his sexy creepy awesome interesting moustache won the real race. Karel won the vicarious one. He had 160 points. Vic was second, just 5 points back. And Helen rounded out the podium, finishing with 90 points.

Leonie still sits atop the overall standings. Karel has moved into second ahead of Joe. It's all very close still. The top three are separated by just 55 points.

Full results and overall standings here.

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Stage 4

And the winner is . . . me! By just 5 points over Karel, 275 to 270. In third place, with 195 points on the day, was Prince Dan.

Leonie still leads the overall. Joe is still in second, now just 20 points off the lead. And Dan has moved from 8th to 3rd.

Finally: yes, Leonie, Todd is still dead last.

Full results and overall standings here.

Monday, May 06, 2013

Stages 2 & 3

Karel and Leonie put in the fastest time in Stage 2's vicarious TTT. They had 158 points apiece. Prince Dan was third with 137 points.

Leonie took the win outright on Stage 3. She totalled 290 point day. Joe and Jonah were a distant second with 175 points apiece.

Leonie now leads the overall race. She has 618 points. Joe sits in second with 503 points. And Randy is third overall. 476 points for him.

Todd gets the dubious distinction of being in last place overall. He has just 43 points and already sits 575 points back of the top spot. I'm sure Leonie will draw attention to that repeatedly in the next little while.

Full results and overall standings here.

Sunday, May 05, 2013

Stage 1

First of all, welcome everybody to the 2013 FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool. There are 26 of us in the pool, including a couple of newcomers. Everybody give a warm welcome to Helen and Karel. And please be nice to them. Surely you all remember how awkward it can be to be the new person in a pool full of old friends.

There are also a couple of notable absences. Dallas and Chris O, what happened? We hope you make it back for the Tour de France Pool.

As for the racing, KK, Miriam, and Randy shared the win and squeezed onto the top step of the podium. They had 240 points apiece. At the other end of the race, there were two goose eggs laid. I laid one of them. Brad the Impaler laid the other. It was quite the scene in the old henhouse.

Full results and overall standings here.

Stage 2 results coming soon. It always takes a bit longer to calculate the TTTs.

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

2013 FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool

Update: there have been a few rider changes. Most significantly, Basso is out. Make sure to double check the spreadsheet before submitting your final roster. Changes will also be listed in the comments below.

It's Grand Tour season, boys and girls. That should mean that summer is just around the corner. But we'll believe it when we see it. What it does mean is that we get to race vicariously pretty much every day for the next three weeks. That is very exciting.

How does it work? It is all very simple. Pick a team of nine riders from this list.

Your team must be composed as follows:

2 GC men - values must add up to 6 or more
2 sprinters - values must add up to 6 or more
1 climber and 1 TT man - combined values must add up to 6 or more
1 stage hunter (any one from the list)
2 wild cards (any two from the list)

When submitting your teams, it is very important that you cut and paste from the spreadsheet and list them in a single column of nine riders with no spaces in between. That makes setting up the spreadsheet so much easier. DO NOT FUCK THIS UP! Please and thank-you. In case it's still unclear, it should look like this:

Rider 1
Rider 2
Rider 3
Rider 4
Rider 5
Rider 6
Rider 7
Rider 8
Rider 9

For the scoring system and the rest of the rules, go here.

Submit your team here by 10am Saturday morning.

There is no entry fee and there will be no prizes.

Feel free to invite others.

Monday, April 22, 2013

2013 Spring Classics Pool Wrap-Up

After 17 races and over 5500 points, the overall victory in the 2013 FGBC Spring Classics Pool came down to a scant 5 points. That is the vicarious racing equivalent of winning a race with a bike toss at the finish line because your tire tread is slightly less worn out. But anyone who's ever heard Bill try to start a lawnmower might invoke another, slightly more crude term to describe the thinness of the gap separating first place from second. Regardless of the preferred nomenclature, the Halfrican held on to take a very close win ahead of Prince Dan. The VP Style was a distant third, with Little M and Joe rounding out the top 5.

As for the final race of the season, I won that one. King Andy and Bill were second and third.

Full results and overall standings here.

I guess this means that the Giro is just around the corner. Check back for info on the 2013 FGBC Giro d'Italia Pool sometime soon.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Vicarious Amstel Gold

Leonie took the win. Dan still leads the overall race. Pete and Matt are right there waiting to pounce though. With two races to go, the top three are separated by just 45 points. The Secretary, meanwhile, is 3925 points from the top spot.

Full results and overall standings here.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

TNR Report

Poutine at Smokes, beers on the parkade.

Present by the end:
the dark lord, g, little luc, the hipster, daniel, the energizer, the awesome one, the impaler, cyclechick, juan eppstein, the secretary.

Monday, April 08, 2013

Sunday, March 31, 2013

A Letter from Spring Training Camp

About  a month ago, it was proposed that the family should spend Spring Break in Minnesota, with the in-laws.  While a similar situation a couple years ago proved to be a decent chance to do some early season riding in slightly better weather than back home, it was still a week-and-a-half in Minnesota.  With the in-laws. 

At first, I demurred.  Maybe I'd stay home; I could finally get the living room painted, after all.  But if I really wanted to paint the living room, I'd have done it already.  And I didn't really want to spend a week alone at home.  And then I figured out how to turn a trip to the states into a new bike, n + 1, as it were.

I would bring a bunch of parts with me, order the rest online, and avoid all the cross-border shipping BS by having it all delivered to the in-laws' place.  I'd get to build up a new machine (always a good time) and then have something to ride for the rest of the week. 

The most obvious hole in the stable is a gravel race bike.  Usually, the cross bike would fill this role neatly, but my Ridley is such a thoroughbred that it lacks even a single set of water-bottle braze-ons, making it a bit of a one-trick pony, and useless for even a medium length ride.  A gravel race bike, in theory, combines all-road capability (tire clearance, appropriate gearing) and light randoneuring duties, so a cross frame is an ideal starting point (provided it isn't too pretentious for hydration attachment).  Hence the Blue Norcross frameset.

In honour of what is arguably the pre-eminent event of its kind, Challenge has started manufacturing a tire specifically for gravel racing, the Almanzo, named after the the 100 mile Minnesota gravel grinder race.  When I left Winnipeg, there was exactly one shop on the whole interweb with stock: Calhoun Cycle in Minneapolis.  On previous trips, I've visited One on One and Freewheel, among others, and they're great, but I'd never been to Calhoun.  It has an urban, utility-cycling vibe, with a lot of high-end saddle-bags and such on display, and is attached to a coffee shop.  But most importantly, they had Almanzos.  Score!

What they - and four other reputable shops in the greater Twin Cities area - did not have, were the particular straddle wire cables that my Shimano cantilevers needed (and which I didn't have).  Pictured below are some of the most difficult-to-find small parts in cycledom.

I finally found them in a very neat shop.  Flanders Bros. (that's really the family name, apparently), on Lyndale, specializes in all things cyclocross, and is definitely worth a visit, next time you're in Mpls.

With those two last-minute items tracked down, I was ready to start building up the ideal gravel racer. 

As far as I can tell, the Almanzos are basically Grifo XS treads glued to a slightly narrower 30mm casing.  Having never sprung for such fancy tires before, I have little to compare them to, but they seem to be as supple as they claim, and they roll on pavement as well as any slick I have ridden.  They're not slowing me down, that's for sure.  The rack under the seat is for the saddle-bag.  I hadn't used it much, as it always bounced against my thighs before; with the new support, I don't even notice it's there.

There's still plenty of snow down here, but by waiting until midday, I was able to ride in temps between 3 and 7 degrees most days.  It's not California or Arizona, but it's still a whole lot better than back home, according to Environment Canada.  This, Andrea, is fleece bib-knicker riding at its best, and the cold, moist conditions make for effortless, injury-free farmer blows.  You do need to keep the boys insulated from the wind on longer rides, though.

I've been seriously neglecting the bike this winter (I rode the rollers a grand total of once), but with Brad's race just around the corner, some "training" was required.  I got a few good rides in, including one long loop on rolling hills on Saturday, when I took these:

Apparently, those are the remains of a World War 2 bomb making facility or something.  The car in the trees is just straight-up redneckery, I think.

And finally, to inspire you all for what is sure to be the most gravelly year yet, isn't this a pretty colour for a road?  It must be all the clay.

PS - I don't think "strike" is quite the appropriate term to describe a situation where the boss is the only person refusing to work.  So, what did everyone else do over Spring Break?

Happy Easter Everyone

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Saturday, March 23, 2013

noted while reading...

Reading “The Year’s Work in Lebowski Studies,” it’s hard not to recall some of the profound and not-so-goofy things the novelist Umberto Eco had to say about cult movies in his 1984 essay “ ‘Casablanca’: Cult Movies and Intertextual Collage.”
“What are the requirements for transforming a book or movie into a cult object?” Mr. Eco asked. “The work must be loved, obviously, but this is not enough. It must provide a completely furnished world so that its fans can quote characters and episodes as if they were aspects of the fan’s private sectarian world, a world about which one can make up quizzes and play trivia games so that the adepts of the sect recognize through each other a shared expertise.”
(If the phrases “Nice marmot,” or “You’re entering a world of pain,” or “I can get you a toe” mean anything to you, then “Lebowski” has entered your private sectarian world.) ...a cult movie must be “ramshackle, rickety, unhinged in itself.” He explained: “Only an unhinged movie survives as a disconnected series of images, of peaks, of visual icebergs. It should display not one central idea but many. It should not reveal a coherent philosophy of composition. It must live on, and because of, its glorious ricketiness.”
Garner, Dwight. "BOOKS; Dissertations On His Dudeness." The New York Times. The New York Times, 30 Dec. 2009. Web. 24 Mar. 2013.

Is this a bit like, "too much front!" or maybe more poignantly, "we are exactly what we are"?
I knew it wasn't nostalgia...

Monday, March 18, 2013

More Sunday Film Fest - DX 2012

Here's a DX 2012 video. Now the one person who seemed to care can relax. There may even be another one yet... following up the pre-ride! Where it's actually dark! But we'll see...

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

On Strike

The Dark Side's home on the interwebs will be shut down until we receive the kick-ass DarkCross 2012 movie we've been waiting for from the Secretary.

Essential services--like vicarious racing results and snarky observations--will be available via the Twitter: @fgbcdark.

Thursday, March 07, 2013

DarkCross Goes to the Movies

Two movies in one day? Let's just say it was a day full of pleasant videographic surprises at the Death Star today. This movie is significant  because it features not one but two cameos of our very own DarkCross. You will no doubt also recognize a few others who have been chosen to represent the cycling scene here in Peg City. Thanks to the Spectator Tribune for sharing it.

Maybe this will tide us over until the Secretary delivers on the long awaited DarkCross 2012 film he's been working away at.

Letter from Armenia

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Strade Bianche Results

Prince Dan and the Halfrican rode into Sienna holding hands. They shared the win with 500 points each. KK was third with 440 points.

The CycleChick continues to lead the overall race. Dan has moved into second, bumping King Andy down one spot to third place.

Full results and overall standings here.

Internet Famous

We always knew it was only just a matter of time until he became a household name. But now that he's under suspicion for sleep doping, it'll be interesting to see how long he remains on the front page. More at Pure--which is apparently also where you should head if you need to get yourself fixed.

Monday, March 04, 2013

24 Hours of Coens Report

It's amazing how much fun it can be to hang out in a garage with a bike, some Scrapper, and a pile of movies. Brad the Impaler finished the most laps. But really, all of us were winners. 

Here are some photos.