Thursday, May 28, 2009

Back on the Bike

So I've been back on the bike (for a period that will remain untimed) and it feels great. Not so much that my shoulder feels brand new, but just pedaling around in the sun and the feel of the wind is great. The shoulder doesn't feel bad at all on the bike, no worse then if I was drenched in sweat riding the trainer inside. All I can really do is stay seated and do no pushing or pulling on the bars. It's great though as it forces you to use nothing but leg muscles.

Last weekend since I wasn't gone racing like I normally am this time of year I got the opportunity to go to the Indy 500 from Sherri (mother in law) and Larry. Larry has gone for over 30 years, but recently has ownership over 8 seats every year, and they saved me a seat this year. I was able to take part in their traditions that began with eating donuts, followed by a drawing to pick drivers to win a trophy, walking to the track from the same spot 2 miles away, eating fried chicken, cheezits, and chocolate chip cookies, walking back and taking a photo based on how well you did in the picking of drivers. I showed my rookie form by finishing last and lack of knowledge as I had picked two rookies myself, out of the three we each picked. The whole thing was so much fun and I have to find a way back next year.



Me at the race track. Thanks for the sweet hat and shirts Will!

The following day I headed up with my bike to my Uncle/Aunt's and Cousins Inlaws lake houses. My wife left the previous day as she didn't want to spend the Sunday while I was at the race all alone, so I left early Monday morning on my bike to meet up with everyone. I left plenty early as I was able to arrive in time for my second breakfast at 10am. Nothing like having 120km's done before 10am. The weather just so happen to be subpar that day so the activities of the day were minimual, but I did find time to partake in my first race back but I lost to Alex a 3 year old rider with lots of power. I was very dissappointed in my peformance and am going to have nightmares about that baby blue streak that went flying away from me. My luck continued to fail as Jeff and I sat with fishing lines in a lake with apparently no fish.

As for future races go it looks like Fitcburg will be my first race back. I was looking at Nature Valley for a while, but that would have been just over the 4 week mark and that would be on the edge of safe as any crash would probably sideline me for another 5 weeks. I really, really wanted to do it as it is a big race for the team, but with the way everyone is riding now I think they will do just fine without me.

You can follow how or what the team is doing now on Twitter at http://twitter.com/KendaProCycling

That's all for now

Breeze On

Sunday, May 17, 2009

One week down...

As of yesterday it's been a week since my crash and I broke my clavicle. It's felt like one of the longest weeks of my life.

There really isn't much a guy can do with one arm. I even tried subbing one day to keep my mind off of riding and to try to pass the time more. It went alright and was a good day in terms of not having to do to much. All I really had to do was press play on the dvd player 8 times, and make sure no one hurt anyone. The challenging part was trying to stay awake, it felt like I was back at school.

Well the bruising on the shoulder has gone down which has to be a good thing. I've even managed to ride the trainer for 30min to an hour a few days, relatively very easy, but at least it was something. I go back to the doctors on Tuesday again for another check up to see how things are progressing. Hopefully I'll be able to ride the trainer a bit more seriously this coming week, and I guess move my arm more then an inch or so, but the bike thing would be nice.

I guess life would also be better if I could enjoy the things I usually enjoy without pain such as eating, drumming, napping, and sitting on the morning throne. And of course my wife would enjoy it if I got back to making the bed, dishes, and vacuuming. Soon enough everything will be back in order.

Breeze On

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Joe Martin Update

Prologue:

Well it went ok, not great. I did the time I was hoping for, but it just turned out everyone went faster as well. I guess I'll have to shoot my sites higher next year.

First Race:

Let the disastrous weekend begin. A km or two after the 7km neutral I ended up with a wheel in my derailleur and it pushed my hanger all the way up into my cassette so it wouldn't spin. So I look back to get a bike change and by the time the team car rolled up, and got me a new bike the caravan was out of sight. Luckily Ben hung back and helped me start to chase. We rolled for a while and finally the car came back up and helped us along, and at this time we are in regular traffic. A couple miles later Bennet and Ty roll back and try to help me out so I can get back in the race. We were on our own for a while as the offical had told our car to get back in the caravan. We're chasing, and chasing, and just hanging to far back from the caravan. Eventually the team car pulls over so Tennyson can take a 'pee' and so they ended up behind us again, and so in front of us. I ended up behind the car on my own trying to chase down the caravan at 48mph (on a compact crank) and finally I got back on the tail end. I chased through the caravan and finally after 30km I made it back in. The field is still rolling as the early break is trying to go away, and till it did I was just trying to recover.

My day wasn't quite over there as I did flat at about 120km in, but to a real quick fast change and was the back of the caravan in no time. After all that, a cop car in the middle of a corner a km out and the guy who snapped his chain 500 meters from the line I was just pretty happy to back with the leaders.

Road Race two:

Crash 15km from the finish and a broken clavicle. My dad earlier in the day said he found a lucky penny the day before and said I should get rid of it with all my bad luck the day before. I guess we were to late.

I guess one of bright spots on the weekend was the eating at the waffle house next to our hotel. I was going to skip on day for subway, but subway had a line all the way out the door so it was back to the waffle house. I thought about what I had there and it's quite funny. Here it is in order:
1: Pecan Waffle with side of eggs. 2. Double Pecan Waffles side of ham. 3. Pecan Waffle side of a hamburger. 4. Pecan Waffle side of triple chocolate pie. Guess which day was after the crash?

So in the two major events I've down this season I've had 3 bike changes, 3 flats, and one broken clavicle. Can't wait to see what happens next!

Breeze On

Time Out!

I've been forced into an early season break with a break in my left clavicle while at Joe Martin. Not much to say about it other then we were fairly lined out and someone came over from the left to the right and took out my front wheel and bam! I hit my head hard and don't remember the caravan passing, Tennyson jumping out of the car, or the ambulance stopping by me. I wanted to get back on my bike, but my head hurt so bad I couldn't and the medic just came up, grabbed my arm and said I broke my clavicle. Game over.

From that second on the team once again took care of me like non other before. Tennyson hopped in the ambulance with me, and before I left the Arkansas hospital I had an appointment with one of the best orthopedics in the Indianapolis region thanks to team doctor Jason Brayley.

I visited with the doctor today and he said since my break was anglelated and not displaced surgery wasn't necessarily warrented. But since it could go either way he said he would call his partner who was on call and get his opinion. After he came in and thought about it, they looked at me and told me "If you weren't who you were, we would have already set you on your way. But we are going to get a third opinion after some more x-rays." I don't know what Jason told them, but I felt like I was a pretty big deal. After 3 consultations and call back to Jason it was decided to go all natural and let it heal itself. I will go back in a week to make sure everything is ok, and should be back to riding 'outside' in about 3 weeks.

Also just because some have brought it up I showed the orthopediac my elbow after he metioned I would have a bump on my shoulder for the rest of my life and the shock on his face was priceless. He said he hadn't seen anything like it in 15 years and knew exactly what it was. It was amazing.

Thanks to all for the notes I'll be sure to keep you posted on the process. Right now I'm shooting to be out racing by Fitchburg.

Breeze On

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Joe Martin

Joe Martin here in Fayetteville, Arkansas starts in a few brief hours.

Yesterday was just going to be the standard pre race type of ride, but turned into much more. It wasn't that it was hard, or long but it at the end of the ride it had that epic ride feel. My father and I started the ride off in the fog/mist/rain for the first half hour. Rolling along the countryside in a new place. I looked at my phone and found a loop that would bring us back down into the den where the tt is, but low and behold the road we were riding turns to dirt.

I still had my sweet Kenda 25 tires on and it felt like I was back at Battenkill. The road was pretty awesome just rolling up and down, slightly muddy from all the rain and there was nothing but hills around us. Of course while out there we made one wrong turn and had to back track a bit more, but it was all in good fun.



Here I am rolling on the dirt. I did clean my bike before the mechanic got it, I didn't want to be a complete a-hole.

All of the team and support finally arrived last night and it feels good to have everyone around gettting ready to race. We went for an easy spin this morning, the staff is doing there thing which is awesome to have and their amazing, and the rest of us are just relaxing.

Send the good vibes this way, it's going to be 4 days of hard racing with a really good field.

Breeze On

Monday, May 04, 2009

Down South

So I'm chillin down south, and I don't mean Martinsville. I'm shacked up Winstead, who must have real life because he is never home.

Anyways I drove down on Thursday in preparation of Sunny King and Joe Martin. We did a couple of rides and drove down to Anniston Saturday afternoon for the night time criterium. Nothing like having the first crit of the season being one at night. Luckily the course was a pretty simple and self explanitory. The home stretch was a drag uphill full on sprint followed by two quick left's and back down you went before making another two quick lefts before the full throttle drag back up.

Team Kenda Pro Cycling p/b Spinergy had a simple game plan. Be in every move, and don't miss it. Seems obvious I know, but with 4-6 riders from a few good teams you didn't want to be that one team who missed out. The team rode amazing and Bennet slugged himself to get into the first main move of the day and rode it out with some strong dudes. The only flaw of the whole race was when Menzies (who was in the original move) countered his own move and was off the front again with 3 dudes, but none of us. Ty took a strong dig to get across, but just couldn't get there. Luckily a few teams missed it and with a mix of Jelly Belly, Kelly, and mainly Nic from Rock they kept it close, but not close enough. Menzies who won stayed away with Wamsley from Colivitia. The rest of us were left to fight it out in the field sprint. I took Marco to the front and was in the middle of taking what I was hoping a great lead out into the bell lap before the others took him the rest away, but two guys attacked and things got out of whack. There was a bobble in the 3rd corner causing Marco to loose the front and we miss a great chance for an awesome result. The good thing was that we had 5 of us there near the front at the end ready to finish the job, but just missed it. We are learning to race together and it will come.

Today I did a decent training ride out here in Huntsville, Alabama. I've never ridden in this area before, but it is very nice. Although I have one question for those around here, does every hill around here half to be at 20%? Good grief. The second hill today I was ready to get off and start walking as I thought I was barely moving. I'm not talking like a couple of meters, it had to be close to a km. Once at the top I was ready to turn back home with my tail between my legs and call it day. Brutal. I persevered though and hopefully I am better for it. I did tackle the back side of Green Mtn. twice today. This thing is 2km with an average of 13%, with quite a few steeper pitches. I felt like I was doing the San Francisco GP again. I was wishing I still had my compact for most of the day.

Tomorrow I'm taking off from here and heading to Fayetteville, Arkansas for Joe Martin. Last year was my first year doing the race and I think it is definitely one of the better stage races of the year. I hoping and know that Kenda Pro Cycling p/b Spinergy is ready for that big result. We have four chances and an overall. Get ready for the men in pinstripes.

Breeze On