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Sun, 31 Oct 2010

Photos from the SS worlds week - 15:58

Climbing a hill on the course in my baby outfit
As mentioned the other week, I was in Rotorua for a while to have fun on bikes with friends. Coinciding with the 2010 SS World Champs and the 2010 Whaka 100 race. I am now back home and with the additional bandwidth available I have uploaded all the photos I took during the week. I also took a lot of shweeb photos I will upload separately, and have got a lot of helmet cam or chest cam footage of the single track fun to be had over there. I will get it in a nicer format/more manageable size before uploading that anywhere too. (4.5 GB from a Contour HD 1080p camera set at 720p Brent was using and 7.5 GB from a GoPro chest cam that Col borrowed from Liam at Swell).

My photos from the 2010 World Single Speed Championships are on the link.

[/mtb/events] link

Thu, 21 Oct 2010

SS Worlds, Whaka 100 and the Rotorua Bike Festival - 15:56

Shane half way through setting a fast 52.4 second three laps on the shweeb
So I am in Rotorua in NZ for 11 days for a holiday, this holiday takes in the Whaka 100 mtb race which I did on Sunday. Then a week long cycling festival and the 2010 World Single Speed Championships. One of the festival activities is a Shweeb championship for all the single speeders to enter. The photo to the left is from Shane's laps today, we are planning to head back for another go tomorrow.

I have not been updating much this week, and am definitely not providing as much entertainment on the blog as Burky and Coops from Swell on their Swell Design Group SS World Tour but thought it worth putting up a photo after riding the shweeb today. (Mikal insisted I get footage of it anyway).

I arrived on Saturday afternoon, the direct flight from Sydney to Rotorua made the trip here easy and I was able to be here in time for the 100 km race on Sunday. That was a hard race, I made my normal mistake of going out far too hard, average HR for the entire 100 km was 150bpm over 6h46m, however most of that is from having my HR above 170 for the first 50 km. I then of course began to realise I had gone out too hard once more and was suffering on the climbs (most of the hard climbs came in the last 40km of this event). Still it was cool to do a race taking in almost every good trail in the Whakarewarewa forest in one event. I had been hoping to come in under 6 hours however with the amount of walking I did late in the race up hills I was well over that.

Monday I had off the bike, wandering around town, settling in, recovering. Tuesday morning I headed out for a 42 km ride with Heather, Shane, Rob, Gaye, Juzzy and a few others. Each night so far here we have all been soaking up the atmosphere (and beers) in the Pig and Whistle and a few other locations. Morning coffee at Zippys every morning has also been a good start to the day.

Wednesday morning we headed out for a lap of the SS Worlds Course (it is a tough one, more climbing then expected, but I guess they have to break up the over 1000 rider field somehow). I grabbed some lunch and ran in to Col and Adam (mentioned above) some other Canberra riding buddies so headed out for another ride with them after lunch, getting 70 km on the single speed on Wednesday which was all good fun.

Today I had a chat to Jeff at KiwiBikes for a while in the morning about a new Cyclocross frame I am getting him to custom build for me (I miss having a CX bike). Had some lunch and was sort of thinking about going for a ride when Shane, Heather and I made plans to go do the Shweeb thing instead. Agroventures (run shweeb) recently were given a Google grant to develop the shweeb technology to implement it as public transport somewhere. After riding in it I can see that it could work out pretty well for that sort of thing. As well as being fast, dry, safe, away from traffic, it is a lot of fun to get around on. We are planning to go back tomorrow and I will get some better video footage then. Fun will be had (especially with some of the costumes (myself included) that I hear may be worn on Saturday for the SS race)

[/mtb/events] link

Tue, 12 Oct 2010

Faith in your training buddies - 15:47
So this is a story (heard through the grapevine) I found most entertaining recently. When Michael "Bling" Matthews won the world under 23 road cycling championships the other week, a whole bunch of his training buddies were down there watching and cheering him on.

This bunch of his mates were watching on the final climb, they watched him come up the final climb in the bunch that remained at that point and said to each other. Cool he has won it lets go find a pub and celebrate. This was before he had gone through the formality of crossing the line in first place. Great to see such faith (rewarded too) on observing his form on the final climb compared with everyone else around him. Go Bling.

[/mtb] link

An N+1 in the family - 13:15

Jane's new Kona Dr Fine (fullsize)
So not a bike for me (though it is damn sweet, I almost wish it were), my sister Jane last got herself a new bike in 1994 when we returned from England. That is a Diamond Back Topanga. She has still been using that bike to this day which means it has had a long useful life (and will continue to do so, more on that later). However she started asking me a while ago about a new bike, most of her riding is a commute in Sydney to her work at Macquarie uni, grocery shopping and sometimes a cruisy weekend ride.

My recommendation for her was a flat bar road bike, set up to be a kick arse commuter. The bike I found for her (thanks to an excellent price from Maladjusted) was a 2010 Kona Dr Fine. Pictured to the left, I got full length fenders put on to make the commute experience more pleasant in Sydney wet weather and also the pannier rack as she carries her gear in panniers for the commute and grocery shopping.

The very cool thing about this bike (apart from it being fast, light, new, etc) is the internally geared rear hub, so it only has a single speed drive train exposed to the elements, also with hydraulic disc brakes it really should be bomb proof for lots of km without much maintenance work. Now I just need to add the bidon cage, U-Lock mount (for the new lock, so do not even think about stealing it from her, bastard bike thieves) and a pump mount or similar.

I am somewhat jealous, this is a very nice bike, though I guess one benefit is I will get the Diamond Back so I can turn it into my shopping/rough treatment town geared bike, so it does at least stay in the family.

[/mtb/gear] link

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