I just drove 10 hours from Sedona, AZ to Mammoth, CA and that BEP song is stuck in my dome… “I Just Can’t Get Enough” – catchy jam, mv shot in Tokyo a couple days before the earthquakes… HOME for cinco de stinko… Shrimp burrito from Roberto’s, threw back a couple Tecates, some way-overdue family time, ok let’s blog… ps, view my full photo album on Facebook.
Cornholio as it is, I just smiled the whole drive home, thinking about the last few days spent with new friends in Prescott & Sedona. The Topeak-Ergon Mafia transformed an amazing opportunity into lifelong memories. Cheers!!
All kinds of crazy ish popped off on this trip. I’m gonna keep it short, because blogs are boring. Let’s start with the Idyllwild Spring Challenge. I was in crap form. Worked a 60 hr week, which = 12 hours/day on my feet = fatigue = painful race for me. Got off work at 11pm on Friday night, headed to the venue at 6am on Sat. morning. My body was hating on me from the first climb. I tried to stay on Paul Lorusso’s wheel, but just wasn’t feeling the mojo. So I treated it as a training ride, and enjoyed myself. Super fun course, lotsa great techy climbs really working the ss bike-handling skee-los… and 80% singletrack- fun, flowy descents and a 1 mile 20% paved road climb, which i walked mostly. 27miles, 4,500′ climbing overall. Forgot sunblock, so got the Patch Adams sunburns on my chrome dome. Ouchy. First time going tubeless- no problems, the only burping smelled like bananas and quinoa… Stans is the shizzle, and I know everybody else has been tubeless forever, but I’m stoked… so ha to you! Placed 7th. I jammed out right after the race to get to Prescott, AZ… this is where it gets good.
Crashed in Prescott late Sat. night, and woke up early to watch the Pros start at the Whiskey 50. What a fun town!! The start/finish is right on “Whiskey Row”, great old school western cowboy vibe. I met up with Michele (my partner in crime/other Topeak-Ergon Basecamp winner). She’s super coolio, and had a gang of cool peeps with her. She was hanging with George from Bike 29 in Vermont and Fuzzy & Dejay with Niner Bikes – good minds think alike. We picked up Melissa, who was beat down from racing the Pro 50, and we all kicked it at the Econolodge that night, laughing our asses off to “Walk Hard” on TV. “If your erection lasts more than 4 hours, get more women”. Went out for an awesome dinner at Cattlemen’s– this little BBQ shack that’s been around for years. I smuggled in my fadorade in a Dr. Pepper can and it was on like Donkey Kong. Deerslayer shots, brisket slices later, schooling a redneck about 29ers… with “Bin Laden” all over the news… memorable night fo sho tho. p.s. I’m definitely adding the Whiskey 50 to my tick list. Great town, great vibe… oh yeah, great brekky spot = Raven. ok…
off to Sedona:
On the way to Sedona, we stopped for some wine-tasting in at the Caduceus tasting room in Jerome, AZ. Fun times- Fuzzy dropped the news about the SICK new ALL BLACK Air 9 Carbon they’re releasing, we all got a little sideways off the “Flight 2”, tasty cheese, savory crepes, off to Sedona!!
What a rediculously gorgeous town!! We watched the sunset at a Vortex spot near Cathedral Rock, Dejay kissed some cairns, I popped a couple snaps- cut to: Meeting the team. Dave, Jeff, Sonya, Yuki, Eddie, and Namrita. They’re all super cool, down to earth, and obviously great riders- my kinda peeps. Together, they form like Voltron and catalyze into this wicked racing machine- awesome!!. We had a blast riding Sedona’s finest (Cathedral, Llama, Pig Tail, Big Park, High Line, Templeton, HT, Little Horse, etc) in between photo/video shoots, and then having great dinners and downtime at the Wildflower Inn . Views are like a3D ride at Disneyland, and we were right next to the trailheads and Circle K. Perfect. (thanks to Jeffrey Neal for the awesome meals and accomodations!!) – pics are all over the Team Topeak-Ergon Facebook page… “like” their page and peep the pics… At night we’d all pile into Dejay’s “Child Molestor” van… Sedona’s got roundabouts every 1/2 mile or so, and Dejay’s idea of fun is curb serving all his passengers- instead of going around the circles, he goes through them… it’s an aquired taste… but when the whole Topeak-Ergon team is sandwiched in the van, and we’re all a little lubed after a great dinner- nothing is better than “Roundabouting” as Eddie termed it… p.s. Sonya, you better HSB this weekend!!
The generous folks at Topeak & Ergon hooked Michele and I up with some choice stuff. I received a CO2-Bra Race Pod, Mini 9 Pro Carbon Tool, Race Rocket MT Pump, iPhone DryBag, Aero Wedge Pack, clothes, and much more from Topeak. The quality and thought put into each item they make is very apparent. My favorites are the new Carbon Mini 9 Tool- I’ve had my old Mini-9 for a while, and this one is even lighter! Also, the Race Rocket MT pump is perfect for racing. Fuzzy flatted on one of our group rides, and the Race Rocket had him up and going before I could finish my Clif Bar. NICE!! We rode all week with steezy Ergon jerseys, brand new GS2 grips, HX2 gloves, and BX2 backpacks. I have to admit, I never used Ergon grips before, but after riding for hours on end this week, with no hand fatigue, I’m sold. If I win Sonya’s contest, maybe I can get another pair!! These grips ROCK!! Super comfy gloves and the pack adjusts well and organizes all my gack. Riding with pros, and getting all this pro gear, it’s easy to start “feeling” like a pro… however, a few endos and the ability to write “rookie” with my blood on the rocks quickly squashed those feelings 🙂 I have no shame in admitting that they worked the s&!t out of me, and I loved every minute of it. Thanks again to everybody I met, and everybody that voted for my video and helped me have the time of my life!! See ya on the trails!!
Altitude training at home, skiing in a t-shirt, dipping in the hot springs, chillin’ at Mobile Mart, Yosemite, bring it! Next race is in Big Bear, CA on the 22nd (US Cup #5) and then 12 Hours of Temecula on June 4… will by trying a Rotor Q-Ring, and a couple minor bike tweaks… hoot hoot!!