Monday, September 22, 2008

Mt. Diablo

Geesh, last weekend after the River Ride I got a sore throat and missed three days of riding. It was some kind of little virus that made me really tired and sore. Luckily it went away and I had a fun ride on Wednesday on the bike trail.

This Saturday, I got two rear flats. I hit a little staple at the chatty beginning of the ride. I fixed it solo and got back in with the pack on their way back after the first sprint. Last week I broke my old record of 37.2 mph-- it was in a crazy serpentine sprint down the levee spinning like mad on my compact crank-- 37.8 mph!! Awesome. I got another flat on the inner loop and called it good. Dino and I rode back home on the bike trail.

Sunday was a reunion with an old friend, Mt. Diablo. It has to be one of my favorite places to ride my bike. I've never had a bad day there. I love the views, lack of cars and other cyclists. We started in Walnut Creek, went to the top, then back down to the south gate (with brand new pavement) and back up to descend to the car. The weather was perfect. Kevin Metcalf rolled all stylish and nonchalant by me on the way up the south side. A great day.

Saturday, September 6, 2008


So when I was deciding what field to sign up for for the Giro de S.F., Dino mentioned that racing with the pros might be more "festive". It was, but that might not be the word that I would use.

The Giro is one of my favorites! Great atmosphere. A bumpy, but fun course. I saw the April Bella got 3rd in the 4's! Yay! I saw Andrea Bella and gave her a quick hug-- she got 7th in the 3s field. I saw old pal Flavia O.-- she had already won the Cal Cup points. She works really hard all year long. She always makes me feel welcome and justs expects me to race with her field. I hung out with Dave in the Vanderkitten tent and got cute socks, tattoos and stickers. Another old pal Mary M. offered to share her energy drink and watch my bike. I love that girl-- she always smiles her crooked grin when she's off the front (or sticking her tounge out). So freakin' strong.

I lasted about ten laps with them but kept going. When they came back around I jumped back in for a while. I put aside my fears of looking like a bloomin idiot and started looking at the number sequences. There were only about 6 of us 3s left. If I finished I could place well (and I needed the workout). One of my early role models for sticking it out is Ellis. It's always better to finish. I started to have fun when the crowd started yelling for me. Michael, who was MC, made some nice and funny comments every time I went by. A huge group of guys at the top of the hill made me smile every time- screaming all sorts of stuff including "Look at the booty!" I ended up 4th for the 3s. The race had some awesome solo breakaways and chases. Unfortunately, I could only see some of it from my perspective. Sarah Bella finished 22nd in our field (training for cyclocross). I was sorry to see Shelley Olds crash on the last lap.

I am proud of myself for even trying to race with people of that caliber. LOOK AT THE NAMES! I wanted some autographs at the starting line. Christine Thorburn!!! Now I can say that I raced with National and World Champions. Geesh.

This year I learned how smooth and safe the pros can be. I also learned how tactically smart they are (it was mean how they drove up the hill every lap). I realized that I was mentally handicapping myself by relegating myself to the back. "Just try to hang on." Anyone worth their bike-racing salt knows that that spells doom and it takes a lot more energy to hang out in the back. You are always in danger of being popped off. Thing is with them though, it's not like Women's 4 races where I could boss people around, pushing people off wheels and taking the front whenever I wanted, the crit boss. If I did that they would hang me out to dry so fast. It's hard to move up. You have to be really good at cornering and keeping wheels to stay in the game.

I had fun!

Giro Results

Women 1/2/3
1 826 Martina PATELLA Unattached
2 831 Brooke MILLER Team TIBCO
3 828 Karen Brems Webcor Builders
4 829 Christine THORBURN Webcor Builders Cycling Team
5 815 Flavia OLIVEIRA Unattached
6 824 Karla KINGSLEY Easton/SugarCRM/Specialized
7 809 Starla Teddergreen Dolce Vita
8 834 Virginia PERKINS Unattached
9 802 Kristin DRUMM PROMAN Cycling Team
10 836 Vanessa Drigo Village Peddler
11 822 Olivia DILLON Unattached
12 816 Jane ROBERTSON Unattached
13 808 Liza Rachetto TEAM TIBCO
14 837 Stacy MARPLE Unattached
15 812 Mary Elizabeth MAROON Vanderkitten
16 807 Jane DESPAS Unattached
17 830 Victoria BASTIDE Team TIBCO
18 800 Sarah Bamberger Cheerwine Cycling
19 803 Amanda Eaken Metromint Cycling on Marin Bik
20 817 Katharine CARROLL Unattached
21 813 Laurel GREEN Dolce Vita Cycling
22 835 Sarah KERLIN Velo Bella
23 832 Alison STARNES Dolce Vita Cycling
24 819 Laurie FURMAN Code 3 Racing
25 827 Jennifer VAN MUCKEY Easton/SugarCRM/Specialized
26 810 Anna Woldring Code 3 Racing
27 811 Lauren HECHT Webcor/Alto Velo
DNP 801 Patricia Black Morgan Stanley/Specialized/24H
DNP 804 Sarah Kayfetz Dolce Vita
DNP 805 Melodie Metzger Cal Giant Cycling Team
DNP 806 Yukie NAKAMURA Team Kenda Tire
DNP 814 Shelley OLDS PROMAN Racing Team
DNP 818 Anny HENRY Unattached
DNP 820 Brianna HAND Metromint Cycling on Marin Bik
DNP 821 Katie Kelly Mako/Mellow Motors
DNP 825 Elizabeth HATCH Unattached
DNP 833 Hanan Alves-Hyde Proman
Cat 3(B)  Women
1 198 Carol Irving Touchstone Climbing
2 188 Rita SZETO NorCal Velo Women's Cycling Te
3 193 Lesley JENSEN Mako
4 197 Katie Norton Velo Bella
DNS Karena Shannon Code 3 Racing
DNP 187 Jessica CONNER Dolce Vita Cycling
DNP 189 Lucia MOKRES Easton/SugarCRM/Specialized
DNP 190 Kimberley PAYNE Webcor/Alto Velo
DNP 191 Marissa Axell Roaring Mouse
DNP 196 Kate Riedell Roaring Mouse Cycles

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Calling it a season...

Three tough downtown crits with super fast smooth women:

Carerra de San Rafael
Susuin Harbor Criterium
Giro de San Francisco (big scary pros-- more later on this)

Mostly I was dangling at or off the back (not a good place to be). I got better at cornering, keeping a wheel and keeping my composure.I finished even though I got dropped by the pros. I had a lot of fun.

I just need a little bit more "umph" for next year. Dino helped me get some of it back. Next year I'll make it.

The face says it all (yesterday's 1/2/3 Giro):

The new skin-suit is the bomb!