|Jens Voigt in perfect climbing form. One of the true giants of the sport.|
I will really miss George Hincapie and Kloden when they retire. True hard men of the sport. I think this photo of Klodi says it all. If we'e talking about the greats, I just have to mention Jens Voigt as well. In the meantime, I'm really enjoying Thor Hushovd's reign at the top, and Cav's peevishly quick smile when winning.
|Andreas Klöden : Hard man|
On Monday we did a breakfast ride, and it was so cool I wore arm warmers both ways. Some good climbing, including Iron Point Rd, and some of the bike paths and neighborhoods where the views are magnificent and the houses are paid for by Intel stock options..
|The Tourmalet circa 1937|
I had to dig really deep after 2.5 hours of riding to keep the hammer down, but was very happy my legs felt so strong so late in the ride. Also nice that we started 10 minutes behind the main group of 30 riders and passed them doing about 23 mph on a long straight stretch.
I'm still a little tired though from that one, as I did about 45 minutes above LT, and 30 minutes of that at better than 90% of max HR. I think next time I'll stay with the peleton on the way out, and hammer home. Mostly though, SBHs are about riding. Just putting in a lot of miles, and not gear, or egos (well, not too much, anyway). They also put on their annual picnic last weekend and I met a lot of my FB friends in person for the 1st time.
So what happened to my old bike club, Hammerin Wheels? Not really sure, but they seem to have imploded. Not many rides and all very poorly attended. I put a lot of time and effort into teaching members there about gear and nutrition, so as sour as the vibe got to be there, I'm a little sad to see it come to this.
A couple of panic stops (idiot peds on the ARPT) ripped through the tread, and by the end of our speed run Monday, the chords were showing through on my back tire. I used up a gift card at Amazon, and dividends at Performance Bike shop, and put Conti GP 4000s on the front, and when they arrive, Ultra Gatorskins on the back.
If I am still getting flats in back I may move up to the Gatorskin Hardshells. I like the pointed crown on the GP 4000s better than the Michelin Pro3 Race I've been running for 3 yrs now. Very sticky rubber too. Like super glue sticky. Will have to see how they perform.
Conti has an asymmetrical Attack/Force tire combo with a 22mm in front and a 24mm in back, with construction tweaked for turning and pushing respectively, and it got me to wondering how much sense running identical tires front and back really makes. I think I may have flatted once in 3 years in front, and 2-3 dozen times in back. I also can wear through at least 3 back tires before the front goes, so I'm going to try tailoring the tires to the task and see how that works.
As expected, I have had to move the shifters enough to require retaping the bars, and after going from blue sidewalls to black on the tires, I want more viz than royal blue and black dapple provides, so I am going back to blazing Ferrari Red. The Black & Blue tape was Profile Designs, and it has no sticky on the back. Weird, but it did allow me to move the tape up a bit to follow the shifters.
The red tape is a new up-scale tape from Performance, which admittedly is a little like saying upscale Yugo, but I ride in the aerobars so much the bar tape isn't that critical. (although I am riding on the blocks a lot more now riding with the SBH, so wrist swelling is an issue again) At any rate, it seems worth a try, and I like the fog-horn subtlety of all that red up front.
Oh, I am absolutely swimming in my new PI Elite In-R-Cool shorts. I got back from the ride on the 4th of July and had to pull them up over my naval to get them fully stretched out. I don't know if they've stretched or not, but they are causing my back muscles to cramp that far up on my kidneys. (aside from being completely ridiculous) I've received a very strong recommendation for Assos bib shorts, so I'll try those after returning the PI shorts.
Finally, it looks like the Specialized Avatar Gel seat has done the trick. Yea!
|Descending the Tourmalet at 60+ mph. God's roller coaster!|