Saturday, December 31, 2011
If you have never been to Arches National Park in Moab, and you ride a road bike, I highly recommend you take a full day and ride the entire road system in the park one day, it's a bucket list item for road riders and a spectacular way to see the park and wonders it has to offer. I'll leave it at that and let these images tell the rest of the Park's story. It's the best $5 you can spend on a road bike.
Friday, December 30, 2011
Thursday, December 29, 2011
I had never ridden Sovereign Trail in Moab until today. Rolling solo on a soul mission to wind down 2011 let's just say the choice did not suck. I'll be riding this again and there is some good vij floating around I'll get to sometime soon...Cheers, more from the road bike tomorrow.
Simply put, Epic, tomorrow is going to be Epicker.
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
The weather has been a bit odd this winter here in the Vail Valley. The snow is God awful and the funny thing is that I've skied way more days this season up until this point of the season than I have for many, many years. It's Christmas, New Years week, and there is a freekin 18 inch base at the ski area, maybe. The forecast for the next ten days shows no snow and big round sunshine forever. It's gonna be 53 and sunny in Moab on Thursday and Friday of this week, my days off, so I'm heading west to Moab, and not just to ride dirt. I've ALWAYS wanted to ride the road through Arches National Park, and I'm gonna do that. I'm gonna wrap up this stress filled year with no stress and pedaling my bikes just to send off 2011 with a big ol FUCK YOU, I WIN.
With that said, the annual A2B Douche Bag of the Year will be announced once again on New Year's Day, it's still up for grabs and your last minute nominees will all be considered. I've got plenty of ideas myself, and it may end up being a big surprise, and someone that you all know very well. Douche Bag.
Sunday, December 25, 2011
Saturday, December 24, 2011
Friday, December 23, 2011
Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Brian Patrick from OnsightMedia has once again captured in short the essence of the Men's Open Colorado State CX Championships. On a classic day with classic conditions, Yannick Eckmann put on a clinic and destroyed the field.
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
Monday, December 19, 2011
Huge congrats to all racers at the CX State Championships this weekend. Nicole Duke repeats and Yannick Eckmann destroyed the elite men's field. Most dramatic finish went to two juniors out there. Two National Champions, Mina Anderberg and Ashley Zoerner battled to the line literally, both champions, with Zoerner edging out Anderberg for the victory in 2011.
Sunday, December 18, 2011
There will be some amazing photos and video floating around the internet soon from the Colorado State CX Championships. The "T Wrecks" flyover created some carnage for sure, on both sides, and will be talked about for many years to come. More action from Castle Rock today! Congrats to all racers yesterday who showed, it was a pretty Crossy day for sure.
Friday, December 16, 2011
Thursday, December 15, 2011
As this weekend approaches, which is my third year in a row calling the Colorado State Cyclocross Championships, I must thank all of you for your support and the great feedback I've gotten from so many of you. 2011 is the year that my dream of becoming a professional cycling and event announcer took a really big step, and I am so excited for what the future holds. This is what I love to do. This is what I hope to do for many years to come. I'll still jump on the bike on occasion and compete, but my true passion is calling the day on the mic, and watching every warrior line it up and punish themselves while having that incredibly personalized experience of competition under the most brutal of circumstance. It's just plain and simply the purest form of pain there is, and you all come back to participate every weekend. Cheers to you all and let's make it one hell of a throw down this weekend in Castle Rock, I'd like to race, but I'm tired, and owe all of you the right to a proper call. I'll see you there when we put a wrap on the 2011 season, and do not forget, Monday starts preparation for the 2012 State Championships!
PHOTO CREDIT, TERRY SMITH, I THINK.
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Monday, December 12, 2011
Another one bites the dust, this was just one of probably 50 crashes at this spot.
I need to thank Dejan Smaic today for a brief moment yesterday during the Boulder Racing Lyons race. My race was a shit show, from getting caught up in two crashes before we even hit the first run-up, to having the wrong shoes to even contemplate making it up the frozen tundra of Lyons, to ill advisedly bumping my tire pressure up just enough to beat myself into submission for 45 minutes of slobber knocking Cyclocross racing just prior to racing, there was a moment. I can’t say I’ve ever felt sorry for myself while racing cross (all though I was close in KC at Nationals four years ago), but I was on the verge today. The Cyclocross God (does he have a name?) was in the midst of battering me into submission in Lyons, and I felt like Gerry Quarry after fifteen rounds of left jabs from Muhammad Ali, when on the last run-up of the race, on the final lap, I caught three of the Cat 4 women whom were racing at the same time as my group, this also happened at the same spot the lap before with a couple of other women racing, and per order of our ACA race officials I just floundered up the hill behind them until I had a good place to get by. It did not matter anyway, I probably looked like a street bum scrambling for a wind blown dollar bill trying to get up those frozen fucking hills so I could remount my bike and prepare for the next crash. Well there at the top of that last run-up, with his camera in hand, was Dejan, and I looked at him and he was humored and laughing at my circumstance, because it was funny, really funny. I mean I had fucked up so many times previously in the race that I could have been relegated to the Stupid Ward. And when I saw Dejan laughing, all I could do was say “fuck this” and keep on rolling, I was done, but had to finish, and I was miserable, but I did manage to smile at how funny the entire debacle was. When I got back home to Eagle, as I limped to my front door, muddy, scabbed up and bruised, (understand that this was not one big crash, as I did not have one of those, but a 45 minute fist fight with my bike and the course which left me running, dragging my bike in all kinds of strange positions, busting my ass on nearly every run-up and simply having one hell of a grand time) I literally laughed out loudly at the absurdity of this great day. There have got to be some fantastically funny photos or video floating around of all of us from that race, and the Benny Hill theme song would not even do it justice. It’s good to be humbled by the CX Gods as it is inevitable if you race it long enough. Yep, 1000 jabs from Muhammad Ali, and we get to do it again next week at the State Championships. Gimme a day and I’ll be ready. There is no crying in Cyclocross, all though there almost was, kind of.
Saturday, December 10, 2011
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
And after trying EVERYTHING on and studying every single detail necessary to keep my feet happy and sweet for the next couple of winters, it was a close and tough decision, but the Atomic Hawx 120 was the winner, and after skiing in these bad boyz today it was a fine choice. With DFP custom insoles and Hotronic boot heaters installed, these boots ski BAD ASS. Now just give me some more snow and it's gonna be time to go KILL IT.
Monday, December 5, 2011
A front range junior during a "warm-up" lap at Adrenalin Cross 2011
Inevitably, it happens every year. I personally lose interest as a racer to climb on my bike and punish myself. It usually occurs once ski season starts and I've been distracted by swooshing down the snow covered mountains of Colorado and it's high country, because that shit is fun, really fun. This past weekend on the front range may have been the dagger for me as a racer with just two weeks left until the State Cyclocross Championships which I am once again looking forward to and honored to announce, it's gonna be fun. Remember that word "fun"? Well, I think there is a fine line here, and I personally feel that when we have conditions like we saw on the front range this weekend that there needs to be an age limit requirement, because I saw a lot of kids out there that were not having fun, and that is a shame. I did what I could on the mic to keep them motivated and focused, but when kids finish the "race" crying, that is not a good thing. For the really young juniors, give them the morning off and let them stay home and drink hot chocolate with whip cream and watch cartoons and play Chutes and Ladders, otherwise you may end up on Dr. Phil one day, and that would suck. That's just my two cents from a neutral view. Conditions were hard out there yesterday, really hard, and there is an age and time when it's appropriate to let the 8-9 and 10-12 year olds roll. Just my opinion and I do not expect everyone to agree, but that is what you sometimes get here on A2B.
BTW, I've got some vij from yesterday which should be entertaining when I get a minute to put it together, working 24/7 and burning it all all three ends right now so bare with me....
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Let's get caught up, it's been one hell of a roll here at A2B and here's what is up. It dawned on me when a woman I do not know walked up to me tonight at HP Provisions in Eagle Ranch, which is where I poach my night time internet access and Americano's from Burnsy (just two blocks walk from the bank owned condo I live in, hell, they always owned it, now they really own it.) and asked me, "so what happened?", She was with her two young daughters and explained she reads my blog all the time and was wondering how I ended back up in Eagle. I replied that "I had made some mistakes and bad decisions". Some really big mistakes and bad decisions, and that I was happier than a pig in a ten foot bucket of shit to be back, and that is true.
So why the few and far between blog posts lately? Well fuck, I had to move ALL my shit back to Eagle, deal with a cluster fuck of a situation to leave my lease and get square with my landlord in Longmont, due to some incredibly irresponsible behaviors out of my control, and then get settled back in all the while working three jobs, which I'm incredibly thankful for at this time. I know many of you wonder just what the hell I do for a living, or have done for a living. It goes something like this right now. I work five days a week at Christy Sports in Beaver Creek Lodge as their custom ski boot fitter and maker of insoles. This is Monday through Friday. I then drive down to the front range for the weekend to announce and race in bike races. On top of this I also write as a freelance writer for the Sneak Peak Vail weekly newspaper doing all kinds of product review and articles about cool and fun stuff to do in the Vail Valley and surrounding area. The schedule at Christy's Sports includes a three hour split from 11-2 everyday which allows for plenty of ski time, as well as access to every demo ski available to mankind, which does not suck. But I do get kind of tired once in a while. But I do ski once in a while. Let's just say it's damn good to be back. Oh fuck yes.
Above is the start of the Birds of Prey Downhill at Beaver Creek where practice runs were underway today.
Sunday, November 27, 2011
There is always Cross.....
In the middle of the chaos which has finally begun to subside, big time, there was Cyclocross this weekend, and a lot of it, and it was a damn goodin, catching up with friends who are true friends, announcing and racing, and it was damn F'n good. And it all started with a raging hangover after the Friday night debauchery at the Bonfire Brewery. Oh hell yes.
Friday, November 25, 2011
At the Bonfire Brewery as I welcome myself back to the high country and temporarily come out of musical retirement from 8-11pm and get the season rolling in correct fashion. See you there. Let's get a good ol hangover in store for CX racing on the front range tomorrow...I vote hell yes.
Thursday, November 24, 2011
Chaos, that's what my life has been for the last two months. And now I'm settling back into a great place, working three really fun jobs, have very little time to screw off, kind of, and it's a great Thanksgiving. Happy Thanksgiving to all A2B fans all over the world and I hope things have turned around for you as they are for me. Life is better than good, take nothing for granted and eat till you puke.
Monday, November 21, 2011
Sunday, November 20, 2011
Below is a picture, there are 9 cyclocross racers in this photo, find them all and you win. Rock Ledge Ranch is a very cool venue for a Cyclocross race, I would not call this a classic course, but the guys at Pikes Peak Velo did a pretty good job of putting a race course together. There was a punishing run-up, and another which I dubbed the "red rooster run-up". And many loose corners to negotiate, which were not all negotiated by all the racers. But it was a great November day to announce and race....
Friday, November 18, 2011
I'm pretty sure I paid $10 to get lost in this corn maze for an hour a couple of years ago. I had to dail 911 to have someone come and get me out of it.
Here it is folks, the 2011 Nats course in Wisconsin, I wonder where the Leinenkugel run up will be? They are gonna need something. Snore. As one observer said, "at least you will be hauling ass when you crash and smash your face on the ice in January".
This is an entire new level of one upmanship from A2B, the frontal rearal vij system which will get busted out as soon as we have a legit powder day and I'm not working, which may be an issue this winter. Life changes dramatically on Monday with my new full time gig at Christy Sports at Beaver Creek doing all of their custom ski boot fitting and custom insole work this winter, as well as writing for the Sneak Peak Vail, AND continuing to announce on weekend on the front range for another month. bring it, and let's start climbing out of this deep chasm I've created for myself....game on.
Thursday, November 17, 2011
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Monday, November 14, 2011
Dead in an early season avalanche in Utah...what a waste.
Wind, what a weekend of wind in both CX venues this weekend. Both venues provided some great racing and really fun courses. Pete Webber designed a classic on Sunday, but I once again paid the price for being a poor bastard with no pit bike and no tubies to race on, just the poor man's clincher set up which cost me dearly both days, in particular on Sunday. I mean, I'm so poor these days that Warren Buffet would see me as a huge risk investment. The days are getting very short, as some of these photos reveal, but in only five weeks the days start getting longer. Touche.
Darron Cheek Drops the ditch, then goes on to take Jeff Hall down in the 45+ race.
SS and Cat 3 riders race at days end...
Al Marvin drops the Ditch which ate his lunch earlier...thanks for the tube Al, all though I flatted that one as well....
Gates Carbon Belt Drive Sandwich with The Freak in the middle