Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Super D

Bruce Almighty, the Mighty Bruce, called this in: "The Super D is tonight. 6:30 PM, you know where."

That announcement is a lot of things all at once. Late. Cryptic. Perfect.
God forbid you actually use this blog to get news of some sort and you don't know where this is going down, then you better axe somebody.

See you at the gate.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Super Muddy D?

With no confirmed start list, no registration, and no officiating body, it's tough at this point (1:30 on Tuesday) to notify the seedy underworld of local racing that the Super D is postponed due to rain. That's if it were actually postponed, which would require someone in charge to postpone it, which would require both someone actually being in charge and it actually existing at all. Which, officially, there is not and it does not respectively.


It's 1:30. It's been raining for 18 hours. Don't do anything dumb.

Monday, August 23, 2010

What a $6,000 pillow looks like, or how the 18 Hours on the Farm went

The thing is, after 18 hours of racing, you'd HAPPILY pay $6,000 for a pillow. Even a titanium one that was stuck in 34x19 all damn night.

Some other good napping pictures, because apparently that's most of what I managed to photograph this weekend.

What a really good wrench looks like after an 18 hour race.

You'll notice the slight sunburn, insect bites, and full REM sleep while sitting upright at the awards ceremony. All good indicators of a mechanic who poured himself 100% into his racers for 18 hours and has now come to a grinding halt.

And sometimes, just coming home turns out to be all the rest you really needed. Shannon rallied. She also crashed. She also shook it off, rallied some more, endured some nasty wet roots, and brought home some victory cash.

As you can see, Bailey loves cash.

Some further thoughts...

This just in: in case you hadn't noticed them blurring by you on the race course for the last year or so, Gordon Wadsworth and Jay Catlett are freaking fast. I feel this photograph represents pretty much how the men's duo race went the entire day.

Shawn re-affirmed himself as the solo racer to beat at the 18 hours on the farm. After a 2nd place finish last year, he came back loaded for bear and fully prepared to pee on himself if necessary to win out there.
He won.
He smelled like pee in the photo below.

I'll let you draw your own conclusions.

Fast Joe Fish attacked hard down the stretch, relentlessly, even after some setbacks during the night which he could have avoided if he weren't such a damn fine gentleman. Watch out for him at Stokesville in two weeks - he's strong, and the Karma pendulum is about to swing back his way.

In a notable sub-plot, the summer of Toph concluded with a spectacular flurry of mostly unnecessary rallying, much like it began and progressed all summer.
The Toph rode the fastest double lap on file to barely make it in under the 10 AM gun and claim 3rd in co-ed 4 person, nearly 3 laps up on the competition and still 45 minutes back from second. And yet, despite the futility, it's the rally that really counts anyway - and that was one for the Summer of Toph record book.

Other big winnna's...

And on and on...

Plus, I'm told that Jazzy Geoff Keenan rallied in multi-sport, hardman style and brought home the serious bacon at the Walnut Creek Xterra. Other near-podium stories there as well? I'll leave those for someone else to tell.

What I will tell you is this: The Super D is on like Donkey Kong. Seriously, Donkey Kong is coming and everything. 6:30 PM tomorrow night. The location? I can't tell you that. But ask around, search the underground, troll the dirty underbelly of Charlottesville bush league racing in the right place, and you'll find it.

Thereafter, I'm told that a trip to the 12th street taphouse will be necessary to ease those aching bones. Hopefully, all bones will ache, but remain mostly unexposed to the elements. If not, the scheduled taphouse stop will have to be pushed back until after an Emergency room stop.

Any questions, ask the person in charge, whomever that may be, if you can find them.

Until Wednesday, then.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Endurance Racing

Someone who doesn't know me very well asked me the other day why I was into endurance racing. Seems like a miserable thing to put yourself through.

I couldn't really come up with any reasons to do it, only that when you go to an endurance race as a spectator and you see it actually happening, it occurs to you that you'd like to do it too. Mostly, if you look around at all the pain people are putting themselves through, you actually see a lot of smiling, laughing, and generally having a good time. It defies logic in a lot of ways.

For fun, I thought I'd put up some pictures of that fun.

The 24 hours of Moab.

The 24 hours of Winter Park

18 hours on the farm

The Paranormal

Camp Hilbert Enduro

The Burn 24

In every one of those pictures, I can pretty much recall that exact moment. Riding, having a good time, enjoying being on my bike for a long damn time. And as I was putting those pictures up there, something occurred to me...they're all taken during daylight.

Because it gets dark, and it really starts to hurt a lot, and I don't remember many night laps but for the most part, they're hard and they suck a little.

And when the sun comes up, you look like this sometimes:


You just gotta hope that all that pain you put yourself through during the night pays off, and when it gets light again, you're somewhere near the front and still moving forward. The memory of all that pain during the night fades away quickly, like a bad dream.

I am one of the few lucky enough to get to race with family. Shannon, though a self-proclaimed runner who is dabbling in mountain biking, has started to full-on rally. Riding with your wife is cool. Racing with your wife is even cooler. This is a real question she asked me, "Is running 12 miles on Saturday morning before the 18 hour race really a bad idea?"

And of course, Shawn is pretty freaking great at this stuff. Lots of experience, a huge engine, and the sort of stubbornness that it takes to successfully put yourself through that kind of pain for a long time. And yet, he's been through the worst of it enough times to still have some humility and fear it a little too. So when the 18 hours on the farm rolls around on Saturday, I've got him picked for that $500. The real payoff, though, is getting to pass him in the wee hours of the morning and slap his ass one time, real hard, because it's a rare occurrence to be riding with him when he can't catch me. So I've got to take advantage. What are brothers for.

Photo, circa 1981 or so. Shawn, as you might imagine, is pulling the sled. I am the good looking one in the Planter's Peanuts stocking cap. I only wish we could still go that fast.

Good luck everybody at the 18. Don't forget to rally a little bit while you're out there.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

August is upon us

A little August update:

Rumors of my death are unsubstantiated and incorrect. I've been in Ontario. But not before racing the Wilderness 101 in absolutely primo conditions. Pennsylvania, my new favorite place to ride.

Let's get down to business:

First, the call has been made for the annual Super D Brownie Crit.

From: davidtevendale To: james.gist; brucewtj2; jeremy.senn; danielo.mail
Subject: Super D Brownie Crit
Date: Tue, 10 Aug 2010 13:36:48 -0400

Super D Champions of Yesteryear - August is upon us, and with it, the annual super d brownie crit. By tradition, as reigning champion, Bruce Almighty gets his pick of location and date. If he fails to perform, former champ James "super d" Gist is allowed the privilege. And failing that, one time super-stud Jeremy Senn, whose whereabouts are largely unknown, will be offered the chance to pick a location and date.

Failing all of that, Danny O, last year's runner up, whilst not an actual champion, will be allowed to make the holy call.
Rally the troops. If we're going to use BRS again, sometime in the next two weeks is a must.
Let me know.

Dave T.

As a follow up to this, sadly, it appears Jeremy Senn's whereabouts truly are unknown, as his email address got bounced back to me as "This is an automatically generated Delivery Status Notification. Delivery to the following recipients failed. And he's not that fast anymore anyway." Sad.

Moving on, all of us who have been following the summer of Toph will be simply thrilled by what we got in the BFR mailbag:

It would appear the good people of Idaho may have overserved our boy by a glass of chardonnay or two. But he seems otherwise healthy.

Moving on, I decided to cut Bender's ears off.

It's not like he had that much to listen to anyway. There are really only two words he can hear, "Ball" and "Rally." Everything else is insignificant.

And that's a good way to live.

Last but not least, longtime fastguy, Fooftown all-rounder, and 5 time keg-wearing paranormal champion , Iron Mike Walling, has been gunned down by this deadbeat economy in this hellish year of our lord, 2010, and is being forced to move to Cleveland.

(for gods sake, if someone has a better picture of iron mike, send it to me and I'll replace this disgrace of a photo with something that really shows his softer side. if he has a softer side.)

You heard me, Cleveland. His memorial will be held this evening here at the farm, which most of you in the know already know. His ashes will be jettisoned via rocket-fueled space cannon into orbit, or perhaps the pond, and we'll all be allowed the opportunity to say a few words in memorium.

That's the news, kids. See you when I see you.