Sunday, May 31, 2009

Long Miles #2!!!

Today was another long day, but awesome day in the saddle.

Novian, GMac, Justin and I headed out from Decorah Bicycles at 8am for a long day. Justin had to turn back after an hour, but the rest of us continued on. We traveled from Decorah-Castallia-Postville-Clermont-Elgin-Gunder(famous for the 1lb Gunderburger)-Postville-Yellow River-Waukon and back to Decorah. Ended the day with 82 miles, 4.25 hours in the saddle, averaged 19.5 mph and had a few good climbs out of some river valleys down south.

Overall for the weekend, it was 8.5 hours in the saddle, 165 miles.

Weekly totals were 277.85 miles with 14.5 hours in the saddle. AWESOME to get that endurance back up. Now the first week of summer officially starts here in Decorah, with a few days of work, but plenty of time on the bike. This is gonna be a great summer for riding, lets just hope I can get away some weekends to race!

Congrats to Taylor Phinney, first American and only 19 years old to win Paris Roubaix!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Weekend Slug Fests!

Been a pretty uneventful week after Memorial Day weekend. Took a day off and then a couple just nice slow recovery/endurance rides. Those all ended with today and tomorrows slug fests. Today, the group include GMac, Lee Ventiecher, Sarge, Novian and Justin. We headed out pretty chill for an hour or so to warm up the engines, then hit it hard. We finished the ride with 75 miles and quite a bit of climbing.

We went north of Decorah into Minnesota for most of the day. Very nice countryside with windy roads and punchy climbs. Tommorrow will be similar to today but maybe not as intense, just another day of long riding.

Would have been nice to get down to Tulsa to race, but thats a long way to go without partners and with the gas prices going high. More updates from tomorrows ride later.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Melon City and Rock Island Crits

Muscatine, Iowa and the Melon City Crit in Weed Park. A park over looking the Mississippi River. A 1 mile course with a fast descent and a speed bump to maneuver over before a long grinding uphill, a tricky S-curve. The course was 1 minute from Chad Bishop's house, which was sweeeeeet! Got everything ready to go and lined up for the race at 3pm. Over 70 riders started the Cat 3's 28 mile race and it was fast from the start. Many looking for a breakway chance for victory. The way the course is set up and with the wind yesterday, no break was going to make it. I sat in the pack and tried to conserve energy. I did win a prime, bringing home a new floor pump! So fast forward to the last lap, I was sitting about 15th-20th going down the hill in the group and moved to the outside, knowing this is where to be. Punched it with a couple guys in front of me and made it to the top of the hill before the S-Curve in 6th. Finished the race in 6th....not to bad. Two crashes, one at the top of the hill and other in the S-curve took a few guys out of the road, including GMac who hit pretty hard. Glad to see he was ok. So a 1st and 6th places in 2 days, I was pretty happy. Celebrated with some chinease food !!!

Rock Island Crit in downtown Rock Island. Fast 8 corner figure eight loop with 24 laps. It started raining right before the start, which looked as though it was going to be just like Snake Alley. Started in a good spot and started to move up to the front when a break of 4 went off the front. The pack sat up and went curb to curb for some reason.....? There were about 4 crashes in one corner today....and I didn't think it was that slick. This disrupted our chase a couple of times. So we then started to chase after a couple laps, with 6 guys trying. The break kept getting farther and farther up the road and I quickly knew it wasn't coming back. With the pace high however, we did catch Derek Cassidy who fell off the back. With a couple laps to go, the field began to fight for position and on the last lap, I came around the last corner not where I needed to be and came in for 16th. I did end up in the money, but the race didn't end up like I wanted it to. The 2 men in the break fought it out for the victory. I wanted to get into a break today, but it didn't happen.

Will have some pictures of the weekend up soon, hopefully.

Next, I will be relaxing for a week or so and then start up again trying to build up for Northfield Crit/State Crit and Clear Lake Weekend. May do the Tour of the Dairyland at the end of June.

Good job to all this weekend, it was a lot of fun!

A large THANK YOU! to Chad Bishop for this weekend. Chad, you were a great host and thanks for sharing your home for me!

A few more pics from Snake Alley thanks to the Snoops.

Final Attack.
Win #2

Saturday, May 23, 2009


Went down to Burlington yesterday for the road race. 33 miles, dead flat, no wind. It's a total crap shoot. Not going to say much, we averaged 27mph. The race was won by a Cat 4. The finish wide open and anyone who doesn't do much work during the race..wins. Oh well, I knew this was to be expected, and I wasn't involved in any of the sketchy crashes that occurred. Snake Alley is the real race.

Snake Alley, one of the hardest races in the midwest, and on the most crooked street in the world according to Ripley's. Got up this morning at Chad Bishop's house and had some breakfast, watched the Giro d'Italia and got the bikes ready to go. Left for Snake Alley and got there in time for the Cobble Climb. THen just kind of hung out, got sprinkled on a bit. Watched as Dewey road away from the Masters field, Amanda Miller won the Womens race, and is riding so well this year!! Then it was time for our race. 75 riders lined up and I was able to get in the front row. A couple strong teams here with Wheaton having GMac, Sarge, Nick, Addi. Whistle went off and the gauntlet was thrown down, I was able to get 3rd wheel going up Snake as to avoid any carnage. It started to rain during our race and so I was glad I put the 27 on the rear, so I could spin better. After a couple laps we had a group of about 8 riders off the front. Brian West was the only Iowa rider in here with me. Sam Stone (Baraboo Sharks) through off a big attack and went solo for 9 laps. We chased but didn't make up much ground. The course started to dry up and I knew I could use my power to get up the climb. By this time, Shrek had made it back into our group as well. With 2 laps to go, we were catching Sam and so I punched it up the Snake and caught him by the top. When I looked back, it was just Brian, Sam and I so we kept the speed high. Last time up Snake I punched it again and when I was at the top, was alone! I soloed down the decent and won by about 5 seconds over Brian West and Sam.

Setting pace up the Snake!

Setting pace again.

Final Podium. Brian West, Myself, and Sam Stone.

Iowa boys went 1,2!!! It was my second win in as many years at Snake Alley, first in Cat 4's and then Cat 3's this year. Shrek, Jimmy Carrico and Chad Bishop all ended up in the money and it was a good day for Iowa racers!

Another thing that made the day so awesome was Bethany and her parent's came down for the race. We then went out to Applebees after the race!

Tomorrow is Melon City and then Rock Island on Monday. Will have pictures and those posts after the races!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend

So tomorrow starts the best weekend of racing in the midwest.

Burlington Road Race, Snake Alley Criterium, Melon City Criterium and Rock Island Criterium.
A race for everyone this weekend with 2 "sprinters races, a climbers race and a puncheurs race.

The Burlington road race is always a crap shoot, with no one wanting to waste to much energy, even though it is only 33miles. DICE always has all the racers do this one race and usually do very well, looks like 8 have signed up again. The sprint is very hectic and the best racer in the race could end up last because of loss of position. Don't know what to expect here, just open the legs up for Saturday.

Snake Alley Crit, I was lucky enough to win the race last year in the Cat 4's. This year will be totally different as there are some large teams represented, it is a longer race and just will be faster. I think I have a good chance with this race, it is more of a power climb rather then a small guy climb. One of the best venues to watch a race in the midwest, with a Cat 1,2 Pro race that keeps you on your toes!

Melon City was another success last year, resulting in a 2nd place. The only real test on the course is the long power drag up a slight incline, that can hurt your legs after a while. Always look forward to ramping off of speed bumps in this one, but with the very hairy corners, many riders bring their sketchy sides out. Should be a great race!

Rock Island Crit. Pan flat with long straights, it is hard for a break to succed here, and has come down to a sprint finish almost every year. Another course where you have to be careful not to move up to quick or risk getting swarmed. I should be able to do well in this race, being a larger guy with some decent power.

Overall, I am pumped for the weekend. I look forward to seeing how everyone is doing with their preparations, but locally and regionally. This tells each rider where they stack up against everyone else. See you at the races!

Chad Bishop is hosting me this weekend, thanks man!!!

Sunday, May 17, 2009


After today, it is time to taper for Memorial Day Weekend.

Put in just shy of 15 hours this week on the bike with two VO2 days, 3 Tempo and a couple recovery. Almost 300 miles.

Next week will be awesome, done with school Wed. and some short work intervals for prepping the legs. Went out today with Novian and Justin for 3 hours of tempo. It was a great day, and besides Novian ripping legs off on the climbs, lets are feeling light/fast and ready to go!

Leave for Cedar Rapids on Thursday, then driving down to Muscatine on Friday. Chad Bishop was nice enough to open his house to me for the weekend, since I am a poor college student. Thanks much to you man!

Speaking of poor college student, I am going to be working every weekend in June on Saturdays. Don't think I'll race much if at all. Maybe the two races at Nature Valley but I don't know yet.

Have a great week and see you Friday night or Saturday!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Finchford Roubaix 2009

Went to Cedar Falls with Bethany on Friday night for the race on Saturday. Just hung out and made some homemade Peanut Butter Cups!!!

Got up on Saturday and had pancakes, eggs, fruit :) MMMMMMM. Thank you Paula :)

Went out to the course a couple hours before and got registered. The winds were strong and only getting stronger as the race got closer. Chris Reed managed to make it up, good to have a team mate. Another team mate, Rob McKillup won the 5's after soloing the last lap in that wind, sweet!!!

50 miles, 10 laps and 20mph winds to contend with as we started with the Masters 1,2,3 at 1PM. First lap, I see Chris Reed and Brendan Keeley go into the ditch after cooking the turn. DOH!!! I lost my valuable team mate. The next lap we lost Chad Bishop due to same problem, read his blog and he will tell you everything about what went wrong. It was a shame, he is a beast!
Derek Cassidy (DICE) is the man to watch this year, well what is left of his Cat 3 experience. He is an absolute motor and pushed the pace all the time. At one point, Derek, a guy from LaCrosse, Brian West, Shrek got off the front, and I had to peg it for a good 2 miles to bring them back as I lost all help in the "pack". Luckily I was able to reel them in and make a group of 7 guys. This was on lap 5, and so for the next 25 miles it was just us. We rotated well and everyone tried to conserve energy when they could. It came down to a field sprint in the end with Derek pulling away after leading out?? Yea, strong especially into a head wind of 25mph. Rich Wince (DS 5000) got 2nd and Shrek 3rd, I came across in 4th and Brian in 5th.

Overall my legs felt pretty strong, even when I had to open them up 2 times to reel in breaks. The cat 3 field in Iowa this year is very strong and is a great group of guys to ride with. Lots of competition. I am pumped for memorial day, we have to show those Illinois, Wisconsin boys whats up!

Here is a video of the finish thanks to Pig.

Went to Old Chicago in Cedar Falls after the race and headed back to Decorah with Beth.

So anyway, made some money, had some great food. Next up is a crit in Madison this weekend(maybe) and then Memorial Day!

Last week of this block of training and a taper. Did 50 miles EN pace today and legs felt great! Tomorrow are hill intervals!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Tempo Day

Tried something new. Pulling out the Kerkove with some pictures on the ride.

Good tempo ride for a few hours. Getting geared up for finals, but not before Finchford this weekend!!

Did an anaerobic test (Windgate Test) in exercise physiology. Had a max "seated" power output of 990 watts peak over 5 sec. Over 30 sec, my average power was still 777watts. This put me in above 95th percentile and also beat the 2 other football players who did the test.

Doing some LT work tomorrow.

Monday, May 4, 2009

LaCrosse Criterium

Sunday morning, we left Baraboo at 8 in order to get to LaCrosse for Sarge's Cat 4 race. When we got there, it was surely to be a great day, nice weather, right on the Mississippi River. Sarge got ready and lined up, and finished 2nd in his race, getting him the points he needs for the upgrade. He is very strong and will make an impact right away in 3's.

Our race wasn't until 3:30, so we hung out, watched some races and walked around downtown LaCrosse for the afternoon, stopping in a CoOp, an outdoor store. When it was time to get ready, I could see that GMac's team Wheaton Fransiscain had shown up in force with 6 guys, and a couple other teams were rolling around. We pulled up to the start line and saw there were probably 40 guys or so. Going to be fun!

Right away, into the 45 min race, the pace was really fast and found it hard to move up quickly. A break of 4 got up the road with 3 major teams in it, CRAP! They quickly built a lead and their respective teams did a great job of blocking. I tried in vain a couple times to either get across or to help bring it back, but was shut down by the teams. Settled in after a while accepting that I missed the win. The All9 Boys of Doug Klahson, Robo Brothers and Gumm also tried hard to bring the group back. Only Iowa riders seemed to wanna work yesterday, even though other teams didn't have riders up the road....

Well anyway, a prime lap came up and I decided what the heck, why not. So came out of the final turn and opened up, a little early I thought but I held on and won a multi-tool! SWEET......

Eventually got caught by the pack and the pace really picked up for the leadout for these 4. Got in the front, not where I wanted and sprinted to probably 8th in field sprint, but maybe top 10 overall. I ended up with 8th place.

After this race, the Cat 1,2,3 started and I decided to start it quick. So with a 1/4 bottle of water and a GU, I started the 60min race. It started off really fast with men like Matt Brandt(racing for Italian team), ISCorp, Bianchi and Grandstay all wanting men off the front. I hung on and was able to move up throughout the race. Sean Walker, Will G, Bryan M and Lee V all made it up from Iowa to race for B2U. Anyway, I was able to make it the whole race and I think the only 3 to finish that started from the previous 3's race. Finished mid pack. I ended up in 25th spot, ahead of a majority of the riders! It was a great time.

Total about 1.45 hours of crit racing, 2.5 total riding and 55miles of speed work in the legs!!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Baraboo Road Race

Got up early this morning and went to the road race course. Sarge had to race at 9. We drove the course, two steep climbs of about .75-1mile in length and 8+%. The rest of the course was rolling and a lot of false flats. The winds were also very much a factor today, 15+mph.

Sarge did a great job in his race and brought out 2 guys with him, only to win in the final! SICK!

Next was Garrett and I's race. 45 Miles, 3 laps which meant 3 times up the big hills. Started out almost like a crit, pegged the first 3 miles until the first climb and then directly up the climb. Guys were falling off already and the pace was kept very high the first lap. Never thought a road race would start this fast. After the 2nd "two-step" climb, a group of 12 got off the front, myself included. This was the winning "break". We ended up losing 3 riders, and ended up being just 9 for the last 1.5laps.

I was surprised to be here, and just sat on. My legs didn't feel great today, don't have much racing in my legs. Hung on, but found myself cramping at the start of the last lap. Tried to drink and eat, but I think I waited a bit long. We slowed the pace down as I think everyone was watching everyone else and just waited for the sprint. Cross-wind sprint from the left, I was in great position, but just don't have the anaerobic effort yet. Came across 9th out of 9. Oh well, I was happy to be climbing with the best in the race, and hanging in there in the cross-winds. Haven't raced with that much climbing since Tour of Ohio last year in June.

Got some great training in today, with some anaerobic work tomorrow in the La Crosse criterium. I'll post some pictures from the race, don't have many.

Post from Crit either tomorrow night or Monday! See you at Finchford!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Race Weekend

First of all. Happy Anniversary to Bethany. 1 Year and it has been the best of my life :)

It's Friday! Just two classes today and then I am done for the weekend....kind. I have a very big Neuroscience test on Tuesday that is haunting my brain. Luckily I am getting away and racing twice, so hopefully I won't forget to study!

Last day of swimming lessons and then I am out of here with Sarge and Garrett, both of Team Wheaton Fransiscian and graduates of Luther College. All packed up and ready! Legs are feeling pretty good from the first week of training block after rest week. Did some LT and high intensity stuff. Gonna open the legs this weekend and test myself as I haven't raced very much!

First race is in Baraboo, Wisconsin and held by the Baraboo Sharks Junior Team. It looks as though it is pretty hilly which isn't all that bad, I have to climb a lot just in and around Decorah everyday. Will be a good race to test my legs after Eagle Point and before the upcoming month of Memorial Day races.
Second day is a fast/flat criterium in La Crosse, Wisconsin. Both of these races are less than 3 hours from my home at Luther, which is nice as a lot of Iowa races would be the same or farther right now at this point of the year. Never have raced in Wisconsin, so it will be cool to see new faces, test my mentality.

Hope to see some Iowa faces maybe. Sounds like Moritz and some of the B2U guys will be heading up!