Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Manions CX

I was looking over my race results from last year and came to a unexpected conclusion. I used to think or label myself a mtb dude that races Cross on the off season. Well, I hit up like 6 mtb races a year and about 15 or more cross races.... Huh, I guess I am a CX racer that races mtb on the "summer off season".. Who would have thought! At least till next year when I start getting my roadie on, but that's a different story all together.

Anyway, my much anticipated debut to the cross season started on Saturday on on of my absolute favorite venues. Manions Baby!
I just told Jesse G-Funk (racing SS) that I would rather climb all race than ride around on the outfield of a softball complex and Manions offers just that. Although the climbing was a little watered down this year it still was a great, great course..

Had the wife and little man out cheering! Need to get Twin Six to do a kids race jersey!

Getting ready I stopped to introduce myself and talk to Joe Schmalz for a little bit, pretty cool hearing about his experiences with Bissell and racing the Tour of Utah and USA Pro Cycling Challenge in CO. 

Off to the start of the Cat 3 race. Having us line up behind the open guys and racing the same time is a flippen brilliant idea. I love it!
Not a very brilliant idea was taking one last pee break before the line up. I miss judged the time and everyone was lined up when I got there. So I got in line roughly 28 deep, which sucks so bad and inevitably probably ended my race for me.

At the start it was really congested as you could imagine, but thinned out pretty nicely. Until you hit the downhill switchbacks where it was a mess every-single-flippen-lap.. Felt pretty good out of the climbs and was settling in nicely. Once I got a game plan in place where I was going to just go hard and where I was going to go really hard my race ended.

I noticed I was going quite a bit faster than everyone else on this same downhill area, in fact I would kind of sit up a bit before the section so I did not waste any energy getting to the eventual bottleneck. (had to be my mad skills and nothing to do with my disc breaks since all I read is how they don't help in cross) Lap 3 I sprinted to get in front of as many people as I could before this section and once down to about the last 180 a dude when down right in front of me and I had zero time to react. Boom! a endo was in my near future.
So over his bike and then over my bike I tumbled onward down the hill, hood now 90 degrees inward and my rear derailer a little bent. 

I attempted to fix everything and actually completed another lap and a half with my chain slipping quite a bit. I was basically out for the day, but I at least found some hand ups!! Thanks guys!!

 Once on the other side of the barn, chain slipped again and down I go. That"s it, better quit before I really mess something up.. Bummed out to this day about it... But that's racing man. 

Its ironic that I have had a pit bike all last year and never used it once. Sold it and first race later I would have loved to have it waiting for me. 

So there you have it... I would have posted some pics but there isn't much out there for day one. Good to see some of last years Cat 3s up with the big boys this year. I hope to join you, but we'll see...

You can find some good tidbits (race reports, pics, etc) and results over at the race blog. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

My Strava Addiction...

This is soooo me.. Had to share, you can find it over here. Caught my eye over at the Black Market..

New Strava algorithms announced

Strava CEO Michael Horvath posted an entry on the company blog today about sportsmanship, competition, ethics, and a new focus on the social media site’s core users. “After doing a six-month analysis of rider usage patterns,” he wrote, “we were able to pinpoint the key characteristics of our avid regular users and of our paid ‘premium’ users. Our user review team has classified our customers as something known in the industry as ‘delusional assholes.’”
According to Horvath, Strava’s current KOM/QOM algorithm no longer correlates to the behavior of the web site’s most dedicated users. “KOM’s started out as virtual datapoints to mark your progress. Unfortunately, they’ve become real in the minds of countless users. People actually believe that because Strava describes them as a KOM, they are in fact the king of some mountain somewhere.”
Horvath relates the fistfight that broke out between cyclist Elmer Thudpucker and a local landowner when Thudpucker claimed feudal demesne rights to Pighumper Mountain in western Arkansas by virtue of his Strava KOM. “First they beat him senseless, then they tied him to a post, then they made him grunt like a pig. We decided something needed to be done.”
Too much of a bad thing?
Problems also arise when KOM holders interact with other actual cyclists and get their shit handed to them on a plate, according to Horvath. “The cognitive dissonance that arises when you think you are the king of a mountain, but then on a group ride you are the last person up the mountain you’re supposedly king of, creates so much depression, self-doubt, anger, and disillusionment that our most committed members are letting their memberships lapse,” he explains.
“We’ve decided to revamp the KOM algorithm so that all of our Strava users know exactly what their KOM’s really mean, and hence aren’t so dejected when they get crushed by the kid on restricted gears who hasn’t started shaving yet.”
Preview of the new, improved Strava rankings
“We’re in the process of gathering more personal data from our users in order to perfect the algorithms, but in a nutshell here they are. This entire system was dreamed up by Steven L. from San Diego, so we owe him a big debt of thanks even though he won’t see a dime from all his hard work, as we intend to pirate the shit out of his idea.”
COM: Chicken of the Mountain
Indicates that the rider never rides with others, and instead sets all of his best times alone.
FOM: Faker of the Mountain
Indicates that the rider never tells others he’s going for a particular segment, so they will do all the work as he moves from the back to the front of the group to collect the FOM.
POM: Peon of the Mountain
Idicates that the segment has been ridden less than 500 times, and the rider is literally a smallish-fish-in-the-tiniest-of-ponds.
WOM: Wanker of the Mountain
Indicates that the segment has never been ridden by a UCI pro or Cat 1 roadie.
Cit-OM: Citizen of the Mountain
Indicates that the rider doesn’t do road races.
FROM: Fraudster of the Mountain
Indicates that the rider is the one who created the segment.
SPROM: Sprunter of the Mountain
Indicates that the segment is less than 5k in length.
CHOM: Cheater of the Mountain
Indicates that the rider achieved the time with motor pacing or other pacing assistance.
EPOM: EPO of the Mountain
Indicates reliance on PED’s.
KOV: King of the Valley
Indicates net decrease in elevation, ergo it’s not a climb, stupid.
LOM: Lawsuit of the Mountain
Indicates idiot took outrageous risks on a descent or other twisty, dangerous road in order to score points on a stupid web site.
TOM: Triathlete of the Mountain
Indicates that the rider isn’t even a cyclist.
DOM: Delusional of the Mountain
Indicates that the rider thinks that his performance on Strava correlates to his racing ability.
“This is just the outline; we’re hoping to get it tweaked in the next couple of weeks,” writes Horvath. “Once we’ve gone through the AMA’s Index of Psychiatric Disorders to fully categorize our customers, we should be ready for launch.”

Monday, September 10, 2012