Friday, September 19, 2014

Jens Voigt Breaks Hour Record

   Uh, spoilers ahead. So everyone knows Jens Voigt is a badass. No one is arguing that. Colorado was lucky enough to host his last professional road race, The 2014 USA Pro Challenge where he took 28th. He was also voted most combative on stages 4 and 7. 


   In fact, if you look him up in Google image search, it suggest 'suffering' as an additional tag:

Suffering indeed!

   He's been at the top of the riding game for the last 20 years, with wins sprinkled throughout his career. Be it the Tour de France, Tour of California, the aforementioned Pro Challenge, he is a staple at big road races. What's left for a guy with this kind of career? Enter the hour record.

   The hour record is a track event in which a rider sees how far they can ride in one hour. Sounds simple right? Wrong! The hour is one of the most prestigious events in cycling and the past record holders are guys Eddy Merckx. On Sept 18, Jens gave it an effort at a velodrome in Grenchen, Switzerland. The event was broadcast on YouTube as well.



Here's the details of his ride:

  • Jens was riding a specially built Trek bike with newly allowed aero bars.
  • He was running a manly 55x14 gear ratio
  • He rode 51.115 kilometers, or 31.76 miles
  • Since it was an hour, it's an easy conversion, he was averaging 31 miles an hour
  • He completed 205 laps
The bike

   He beat the previous record of 49.700. It was super exciting to see him go out on such a high note. The velodrome was going nuts, the fans are going nuts, what a way to bring a career to a close!

GO JENS!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Look 795 Aerolight

   Look bicycles isn't shy when it comes to cool technologies. You may remember the super cool stem I wrote about a while back. 
   The Look AeroLight is no exception. It's packed with fun bits of tech to make you faster on the road. Here are a couple pieces of technology I found particularly awesome: 

1. Integrated fork and brake - The brake on this bike has been fully integrated into the fork leg. Here's a few pictures:

Side shot

Cut away

   This is a pretty cool technology as it harkens back to the vee brakes of BMX and mountain bike days past. 



   The proper name for this is the linear pull brake, and they had a brief popularity on cross bikes between the center pull brake and disc brake. Lots of power for a cable operated rim brake, good power modulation and feel. And when integrated into the fork leg, very low drag. 

2. Full carbon one piece crank - Look claims that this crank has a combination of weight and strength above 2 piece cranks. This crank gets installed by some wiggling anyone with experience with a 1 piece BMX crank is familiar with. 

Spindle close up

Shot from Look's site

   This crank uses the same technology that carbon frames take advantage of: carbon layup and construction that builds strength into areas where you really need it. This crank has added strength to resist pedaling forces and efficiently transfer power form the pedals to the chain. 

   There are some other cool things, such as adjustable stem, DI2 compatibility and vibration absorbing seat post. All this adds up to a pretty cutting edge bike. It's too new to get a good reaction from testers but we can assume that this Look rocks! 


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

eBay Users That Make You Want to Scream

  So I have this XO shifter on eBay right now:

(After price change)

And this guy asks me to drop the price a bit. Not a lot, just $5. I'm ready for this thing to go so yes, lets drop it.

User: Could you accept 40 buy it now? Please let me know.

Me: Sure, I'll repost it at $40 buy it now when the current auction expires (3 days). 

User: but you can stop the auction because nobody has bet or you can add a best offer option to the auction, let me know to send my offer and you accept it

Me: Done, better hurry before someone else buys it!

User: no man thanks that is a left i need the right.

   The second picture in the auction man!

2 freakin' speeds!

   I don't even know what to say!


Friday, September 12, 2014

Friday WTF: BMX Weirdness Edition

   How hard is it to jam a pedal through the top of the fork?


Not that hard, apparently. How do you even undo this? Remove the pedal I guess, then inspect that fork for damage! 

Monday, September 8, 2014

Campy Fanboy Edition

   A simple image search will show you that Campagnolo riders are nothing if not loyal. 

Various Campy tattoos

   Lets take a look at belt buckles, the true measure of any fan of something. How much can you spend on a genuine Campagnolo belt buckle? First is this fairly basic brass/bronze affair. Price: $60

"I like Campy."

   Any rider worth his weight in red anodized spoke nipples easily has a $60 belt buckle budget. Next is a little more creative. As a bonus, it even has two Italian words on it, increasing street 'cred 15% easily. Price: $118

"I love Campy."

   That's nice, but I want something that really says, "I'm a whore I really like Campagnolo". Enter the $200, gold plated buckle:

"I want to have Tullio Campagnolo's children."

   Just remember, your bike is only as fast as it's engine. And that engine is much faster sporting a $200 gold plated belt buckle. 



Friday, September 5, 2014

Friday WTF: Danger Edition

   Nothing says complete trust like riding passenger on a tandem while going over a huge jump:


Monday, August 25, 2014

Winter Park Race #6 Report

   Last Saturday was the sixth and last race in the Epic Single Track series at Winter Park. This marks the end of my first series and season racing in the expert class. Good riddance! Driving up, the weather was not looking too promising:

Cloudy and about 50 degrees

   Driving over Berthoud Pass was a little unsettling. It was very cold and cloudy and I didn't bring my handlebar mounted fog horn. I parked at Winter Park, but the start was way down in Fraiser, about 8 miles away. 

At the parking lot

   The question was - what to wear to the start not knowing if it was going to clear up or I'd need a snorkel. I wore my knees and arms and an extra jersey to the start and then carried them in my pack for the race, which worked out fine. 
   Here is a map and profile of the race: 

Warmup in pink, race in red

    I rode to the start with a Pro named Jesse who took 3rd in that class, that was cool. He was super friendly and not exerting himself at all in my 'warm up'.The starting line was a pretty calm affair, with people showing up no earlier than necessary to their start times.


   The race itself was pretty fun. It started on a pretty long hill that put me back on my class a bit. I made up some ground in the middle and actually caught a guy about halfway through the race. After that it was just staying consistent and staying out of the 35-39 and 40-44 age group's way. 


Results!

   I ended up with q 11 of 12. It's amazing how your outlook can change with one little position. I was kind of negative until I passed this guy, then everything changed. Suddenly things weren't so bad, maybe I belonged in this class after all, and the next gut was probably around the next corner.

   So here is how the series shook out: 

Series standings

   I am pretty happy with a  5th overall, but would sure like to not have finished in last so many times! It was fun to finally race with this class and see the talent. Now, who is ready for some CX racing?!