Race of the living dead, or, Torrance Crit 2013, 35+

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Seth Davidson

 

Race of the living dead, or, Torrance Crit 2013, 35+

The previous week we raced the Brentwood GP, set in the heart of glamorous West L.A., smack in the middle of the homes owned by the rich, the famous, the divorced, and those serving life sentences in Nevada. What could be better than a craft beer garden, silicone breasts galore, curbside cafes with froo-froo drinks and menu items that end in -eaux, -aises, and three digits to the left of the decimal?

Ah, Brentwood! Home to Brooke Shields, who swung by to check out the action, home to a fabled bike race intertwined with L.A.’s oldest and most respected cycle club and high-dollar payday for the fastest wheels in the West, all recorded with a Hollywood sound truck and 50-man crew from Time-Warner Cable.

But I digress …

Taking it down to the next level

This Sunday, with only a few races left on the 2013 road calendar, marked the running of the Torrance Crit, a race as different from Brentwood as a $5,000 hooker is from a jar of peanut butter. By the middle of August we were all completely exhausted and even sicker of bike racing than we were in January, which was very.

After seventeen races at which I spent an average of $75.00 per race (for a total of $1,275.00, plus $1,932.83 in equipment, clothing, beer, and lodging), I had already wasted — yes, wasted — $3,207.83 in order to garner an average race finish of 31.6th place. The good news was that after Brentwood I was clearly on an uptick in performance, having crossed the line in an almost impossibly good 19th place. If I could only keep doubling my results like that, I’d be winning in no time!

It would be the challenge of a lifetime to improve on the Brentwood finish here at Torrance, but I was up to it. At season’s end when others were running on fumes, I could feel victory, or at least 18th Place, coursing through my veins. [Read more...]

SPY-Giant-RIDE Team

 

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Seth Davidson

By Seth Davidson

Our SPY-Giant-RIDE team had spent a lot of time analyzing the course for the Brentwood Grand Prix in West Los Angeles, scouting the competition, and figuring out the best battle plan for bringing our main man, “Nails” Flores, to a second consecutive win. It was kind of a complicated plan and I drifted in and out of the pre-race discussion, catching only bits and pieces.

“…counterattack…after the prime…”

“Watch out for…”

“…going well right now…make sure to…”

“…sprint…”

“…breakaway but keep the pack…”

“…Thurlow…”

Focus, WM!

Problem was, I couldn’t focus because I had my mind on much more important things, like the colors of our new summer kit and whether everyone would be matching. I had always wanted to be on my junior high school cheerleading team, but that was back in the day when male cheerleaders were gruesomely beaten to death, so, as they say, I chose life.

As everyone knows, in order to be a pro masters 45+ prostate-challenged bike racer, you have to have at least two kits. You need a spring-ish one that has dark colors to represent the departed winter and the windy, rainy, muck of March along with a splash of color for the flavor of flowers and greenery in April and May. Summer, however, must be bright and sunny and redolent with the smell of freshly mown lawns and new car purchases that you can’t really afford but that you were suckered into by the Toyota Tent Sale.

Master designer Joe Yule had been commissioned to do our summer kit, and had apparently knocked it out while watching re-runs of “I Dream of Jeannie” or while wearing a dress and heels. I pulled it on, admiring the way it flattered my chest and butt, and thought it looked great until I saw Brett Clare.

“Hey, Wankmeister! You guys all wearing Tink’s old SPY kits now?”

Then the other riders chimed in. “At least you won’t need separate orders for the men’s and women’s team!”

“Powder puff blue will go great with your eye shadow!”

Of course I recognized that they were simply jealous, and continued to focus on what really mattered: Making sure our team was properly coordinated. It wasn’t my fault that their mothers had raised them to think that electric green kits looked good with tongue studs and tattoos of dragons eating the sun while fighting St. George in front of a death’s head on top of a naked woman with angel wings and huge breasts.

At that moment up came Erik the Red. “Dude, you got my kit?”

“Uh, no. Why?”

“I thought it was being shipped up to you from San Diego.”

“Crap! Maybe I left it in the van.”

We only had a few minutes before the race started, so I rushed back to the parking lot. I was driving a borrowed 1975 Chevrolet van that had originally been “customized” with a bed and blue shag carpet and then used for another thirty years as a plumber’s truck. I tore the thing up looking for Erik’s kit.

He came over. “Find it?”

“No. But this may help.” I handed over a dust-covered dildo and a broken monkey wrench.

“Um, thanks, dude,” he said, and wandered off in search of clothing to borrow.

Getting on the same page

As we lined up I noticed that Nails was wearing the wrong color helmet. His was black with blue highlights, whereas the proper matching helmet should have been blue with black highlights. Before I could say anything to him about this horrific fashion faux pas, the gun went off.

The pace was fierce. Of the hundred starters, twenty decided that they had better things to do that Sunday by the end of the third lap. Each time I tried to advance towards the front to tell Nails about his helmet and offer to switch, a sweep would come up the side and put us all back into the gutter.

On the fourth lap a nice fellow wearing a kit that said “Ryan Construction: Building Relationships” chopped the shit out of my wheel in the fourth corner and almost ground me into the curb, into the air, onto a barrier, and into the meatwagon. I looked at him as he chopped me. “Really?” I asked.

He glowered in fury, unapologetic for having tried to kill someone for a bike length’s advantage in the middle of an old fellows’ race. We entered the 180-degree turn after the start finish, and Mr. Relationships was on my wheel. Just before I came out of the turn he reached over, grabbed me by the chest, and threw me backwards in order to pass me and sprint out of the turn for an “attack.”

I hopped on his wheel and watched him lay down a searing, brutal, inhuman, impressive effort for a solid 400 yards, after which his piston threw a rod, the transmission fell out, the wheels came off, and he went spinning wildly off to the side, never to be seen or laughed at again.

Helping my teammate

By now Nails was off the front with nine of the best riders and mix of the biggest teams in the race. Their gap was substantial; they were gone for good, it seemed. I began to panic, thinking that there was no way for me to tell him about his helmet, so I decided to ride up to where he was and let him know.

The ten-man breakaway hammered as hard as it could, but nothing was going to keep me from helping my buddy. I went to the front and, lap after lap, poured on the coal. Stupid teammates of mine who don’t know shit about color coordination screamed incessantly.

“Ease off, dumbass! You’re pulling back the break!”

“Quit hammering, dumbfuck! That’s our guy up the road!”

Teams Amgen, Surf City, and BBI also panicked, as their breakaway riders were imperiled by my efforts. “Quit pulling, you moron!” they screamed.

But I was on to their wily tricks. They wanted Nails to cross the line first in that uncoordinated outfit and make him a laughingstock, and it wasn’t going to happen on my watch.

Fortunately, with one lap to go I was able to cross over to the breakaway and bring the remaining fifty riders with me. As I sprinted for the front to tell Nails about his desperate helmet mismatch, my legs failed and I coasted in. My teamwork had paid off, though. By bringing fifty fresh riders up to the exhausted breakaway, I had ensured that six other riders crossed ahead of Nails so that his awful fashion mistake would be lost in the excitement of celebrating the winner.

Nails didn’t appear too happy when I told him about my efforts. “Dude, are you telling me you pulled the whole fucking race to chase down my break because you didn’t like my helmet?”

“Yeah. That’s what buddies do for buddies.”

“But I wanted to win that race, you dumbass.”

I nodded sympathetically. “You did. The guy who crossed the line first was wearing a terrible red-and-black combination with mismatched socks. Not even close. You owned his outfit by a mile.”

Letter to a little kid by Seth Davidson

Letter to a little kid by Seth Davidson

Letter to a little kid by Seth Davidson

http://pvcycling.wordpress.com/

When you grow up you’re going to ask about your father. You’re going to ask how he died. You’re going to feel the wordless pain of going through life without your dad. You’re never going to have the guy who gave you half your blood, half your genes, and all of your heart standing next to you at those moments in life when you most desperately need a father. Little kid, you’ve lost half of the most important thing any kid can ever have before your life has even begun.

 

Your dad died racing his bike in a stupid weekend crit. And you want to know why, and no one’s been able to explain. How can anyone explain something as senseless and pointless as dying in a weekend bike race, chasing the glory of a candy bar prime and twenty-five bucks in prize money?

 

Why we race

[Read more...]

Why Los Angeles is way better than San Diego

Why Los Angeles is way better than San Diego

Why Los Angeles is way better than San Diego

Why Los Angeles is way better than San Diego

By Seth Davidson

It’s really simple: We have the best early morning weekday rides. San Diego doesn’t.

What is a “best” early morning weekday ride? It’s one that begins around 6:30 AM, has a huge regular turnout, and rips your legs off.

“Oh, no!” I can hear you wailing. “We have the awesome Tuesday-Thursday ride! It’s hilly and it shreds the field!”

First of all, our ride is better because yours doesn’t even have a cool name. That’s because you’re too dumb to think one up. All that supposed surfer-cyclist-artiste creativity in North County and the best you can do is two names of the week? Sad. [Read more...]

“SHIFT_er” by Seth Davidson

"SHIFT_er" by Seth Davidson

“SHIFT_er” by Seth Davidson

 

SHIFT_er

By Seth Davidson

I was Campy until about 1990. That’s when I got my first downtube “click shifters.” I rode Shimano from then on, and in 2008 upgraded to “handlebar shifters” along with my first plastic bike.

The handlebar shifters were always mushy, never crisp. It was explained to me that the sloppiness was the result of the longer cable. Downtube shifters have a shorter cable so they’re snappier. Being a stupid mule, I accepted this explanation, since it was prattled by people who knew so much more than I did, i.e. people who could change out a cassette or tape their own handlebars.

In September I got a ‘cross bike and it came with SRAM stuff. When you go from one long-owned brand to a new one, especially shifters, it causes you to break out in hives. “SRAM!! Oh, wow…can I really do this?”

I could, and did.

SRAM v. Shim

The SRAM stuff had one really nice feature–gigantic shifter paddles that were easy to reach and easy to push. The SRAM stuff had another really nice feature–it was much sharper than the sloppy seconds Shimano.

But it had one killer downside, too. It hated upshifting under a load, and upshifting on a road bike is what it’s all about. You know what I mean. You’re flailing up the Switchbacks as Craig and John Hall and Danny Heeley and Dan Cobley and Stathis the Wily Greek and the kindly old lady with the basket in front are riding you off their wheel, and you madly try to upshift, mistakenly thinking that the problem is the gear rather than your puny legs, feeble heart, and teacup lungs.

This is when you need to upshift, no questions asked, and it needs to be right every single time. Shimano understood this when it designed its stuff, because for all the sag and droop it never mis-shifted with pressure on the pedal going uphill.

Don’t think. Just click. Or as the Nissan ad says, SHIFT. Or a I say, SHIFT_er.

After a few thousand miles of SRAM-ming it on the road, I found that however much smoother and solid and quick the SRAM stuff was, once you started trying to shift uphill or under a big pedal load, it shifted reluctantly, or worse, it did that thing and made that sound I’d forgotten even existed: The sound of grinding gears.

Money can’t buy you love, but it can apparently buy you the perfect shift

One fine day, however, Shimano corrected all aspects of its infamous mush with the introduction of electronic shifting. Now it was just as perfect and effortless as the transmission in your car. You touched the button and boom–you got a perfect shift every single time.

What’s that? You don’t have $4k to spend on your bike’s transmission? Sucks to be you.

And so it sucked to be me, as I fiddled along with my recalcitrant upshifting SRAM, dreaming of the day when I could retire, cash out my IRA, and use the entire thing to buy my dream gruppo, the perfectly shifting Shimano Di2.

Then one day while climbing Via del Monte and trying to upshift a chain that was covered in dirt and sand and old lube and slathered with bad memories of my BWR recon ride the day before, all the while cursing a bit at the reluctance of the derailleur to quickly and cleanly do its job, a thought occurred to me. “What if I do what we used to do in the old days?”

You know, the days when shifting was a skill?

Oh, you don’t?

Let me explain.

When shifting was a skill

Time was when bicycle chains didn’t shift themselves and hop all over the place at your beck and call. In fact, they obeyed Newton’s Law of Chains: A chain at rest will not upshift unless you know what the hell you’re doing.

There were lots of ways to know you had a wanker in the group, and not just because he was wearing tennis shoes with his toeclips. You knew because he couldn’t shift properly. Yep, that’s right. Shifting up a cog, especially under a load, took lots and lots of practice.

Even the best stuff made, the awesomely incredibly drool-inducing Campy Record that we actually saved up for and that no one ever, ever, ever put on his very first road bike, required you to slightly ease up on the stroke between noon and two o’clock in the pedal rotation when going up a gear. And since easing up meant slowing down, the art of the shift lay in relaxing the bare minimum to coax the chain up onto the next cog. Slow down just enough to shift and don’t relent one fraction of a pedal push more than necessary.

When you were in deep dookey and you had to hop up two or even three cogs, the differences in ability became more pronounced. Wankers would grind and clank and mash their chain between the cogs, and true flailers would throw the chain and tip over. Part of riding a bike, and absolutely part of racing a bike, meant mastery over the chain.

Push just right and fiddle with your Sixth Sense

If there was an art to relaxing pressure on the pedal in order to sweet talk the chain to upshift, it required a sixth sense when it came to finding the right cog. It took thousands and zillions of shifts to know exactly how much and how far to push or pull the shifter in order to get it smack on the cog you were seeking. Once on the cog, it often took a micro adjustment or two to get rid of the slight rattle and buzz.

This little memory lane trip as I thrashed up Via del Monte brought back the other things we actually had to learn through flail and error, things like getting your foot into the toeclip, getting the groove in your cleat over the edge of pedal before cinching the strap, reaching down to cinch the strap just enough to be tight but not so much that the other four toenails also turned black and fell off, loosening the strap prior to coming to the stop sign or stoplight you would probably run anyway, all those things that you learned rather than had gifted to you in the form of some magical invention or mechanical improvement that took out or at least greatly reduced the flailing curve but that also made idiots the equal of pros in many respects without having to pay anything except money.

As I hit the stop sign (and stopped, of course), I clicked the upshift paddle, and ever so slightly, every so Campy Record-ish, ever so old school, relaxed a tad between twelve and two.

Bing.

She shifted smoother and with less resistance than a forefinger poked into the smooth top of a newly opened jar of Skippy. It was magical. All this fine piece of post-space age equipment had needed was a bit of old school finesse in order to perform to perfection.

Tired as I was, I eagerly awaited the little bump before Granvira Altamira. It rose up. Relax. Shift. On the money, to the penny.

I got home and sat down to the dinner table. “Why are you grinning like that?” she asked.

“Am I?”

“Yes. Ear to ear.”

I thoughtfully chewed, then swallowed my food. “I’m smiling because…”

“Yes?”

“Shift.”

 

 

 

 

BWR by Seth Davidson

BWR by Seth Davidson

BWR by Seth Davidson

I got the final results via email. There I was, #95. And who beat me? Who took the coveted spot for 94th? According to the results list, it was someone who had registered as “Dragon Butt.” Get it? Dragging butt. Beaten by someone who was dragging butt.

Har.

Har.

Har.

It sure hadn’t seemed like it would end so ignominiously at the start. Oh, yeah, the start…

Prez had carefully selected his BWR rig from his quiver of orange and red and lime green bikes, and decided to go with the one that had the ultralight brakeset that doesn’t stop very well but is waaay trick. In order to save 3 grams or so of weight, the brakes don’t have the little flipper dealie to open the calipers when you take off a wheel; instead you have to actually disconnect the brake cable from the brake to release the tension so that the calipers open wide enough to slide the wheel out from the fork. Prez had yanked the wheels for the drive down to North County, and upon arrival, in his excitement he reassembled his bike and forgot to connect the brake cables. [Read more...]

Don’t Miss Your Chance by Seth Davidson

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Don’t Miss Your Chance
by Seth Davidson

You get one chance every year in Southern California to prove you’re a bike racer. In this case, “bike racer” doesn’t mean “dude who rolls around a business park for 45 minutes and outsprints 100 other idiots.”

It doesn’t mean “dude who goes all out for a few minutes on the velodrome and gets the fastest time.”

It doesn’t mean “dude who rides a $10k aero road bike on a TT course.”

It doesn’t even mean “dude who has the nicest Rapha stuff and hangs out post-ride longest at the coffee shop,” although that’s pretty darned close to the perfect definition of a SoCal racer, not to mention Manny Gooseman.

Nope, in this case “bike racer” means something sort of like this: “Dude who enters a long, extremely hilly road race with zero chance of winning and with every prospect of getting shelled and finishing alone.”

Who said anything about fun?

Please don’t tell me that you don’t do races unless they’re “fun.” Real road racing isn’t “fun.” It’s misery compounded by pain compounded by gradual collapse and marked by the relief of finishing. People who seek fun in bike racing have a whole world of events prepared for their pleasure: Crits, some TT events, some types of track racing, BMX, mountain biking, certain categories of ‘cross…

But real road racing? It’s the opposite of fun. It is a bad time gone bad. And Boulevard is the worst of times plunged into depression, inadequacy, and loss.

Please don’t tell me you’re not doing the 2013 Boulevard road race, but you’re going to do another road race later this year, as if that makes up for your slinking cowardice. Unless the “other race” is Devil’s Punchbowl or Vlees Huis, those other races lack the quintessential feature of Boulevard, which is that you will get dropped quickly and struggle by yourself for hours on a lonely, desolate course frequented only by drug smugglers, gun runners, human traffickers, and mobile home people who are badly drunk and made a wrong turn coming home from the Golden Acorn casino or the meth lab.

Please, please don’t tell me you’re not doing Boulevard because it’s too far and a waste of money. Traveling even 100 yards for a bike race is too far, and wasting money is the very foundation that the pyramid scheme of cycling is built on.

No, you’re not racing Boulevard because you’re going to lose before you even line up, and your tender ego is too weak to handle the message “YOU REALLY SUCK, YOU FAKER!” shouted at you by you about in large, internal capital letters. You’re not racing because you’re going to be eviscerated. Because your mathematical chance of victory is a perfect zero. Because the racer you wish you were is the racer you’ll never, ever, ever be.

So why do it?

You shouldn’t. Far better to stay home and test your mettle at Food Park, show your sparks on the Donut Ride, or flex it up on Swami’s.

This way you’ll be fresh for the crit on Sunday, when you can play bike racer again, and duke it out in the final 500 yards.

For you, if you were to do Boulevard, it would be far too harsh on your tender ego. You would see all of your friends ride away the moment the peloton crossed the railroad tracks. You’d be shrieking to yourself, “Shit! There go all my friends! I’ve only done part of the first lap, which was all downhill!”

Then you’d realize that none of them are your friends, especially your friends. They would prove this as they recede in the distance. They would not think about you at all, except perhaps like this: “He really sucks.”

For you, the pain of being dropped and abandoned would be compounded when you slowly slogged through the start-finish area. If anyone cheered for you, it would be with embarrassment. Since it’s the first lap, they might cheer slightly loud enough for you to hear. They’d look at you, not with admiration, but with a kind of satisfied contempt that said, “He really sucks. What’s he doing here? He’s no bike racer.”

This would get a thousand times worse on the second lap, because you’d have been picked up and dropped by someone who flatted, or by riders in another group. Each one would pass you and drop you and think, “He really sucks. He should stick to the easy stuff. He’s not tough enough for real bike racing.” You’d feel their contempt. They’d shout it with their pedals.

The second time up the long climb you’d feel okay physically, just slow and fat and worthless, but when you go went the start-finish no one would even look at you. “Why’s he still out there? Why doesn’t he just quit? He’s proving nothing besides what he’s already proven: He sucks. Now it’s just demeaning.”

On the final lap you’d completely run out of gas with most of the lap to go. Each pedal stroke would hurt. You’d get passed by old people, weak people, fat people, bony people, and finally by the carload of drunks again who would feel so sorry for you they’d pull over and offer you a ride home, wherever home is. You’d decline, but only because the car was filled with cigarette smoke, empty beer cans, three weeks of dirty laundry, and couple of flatulent old hounds.

There would be two people at the finish, one of them an official. As soon as you crossed they’d mark your name off and the race would be over. For you, for everyone. They’d give you that look like, “Because of YOU we had to stand out here in the fucking cold for an extra hour. Why’d you even show up? We hate you.”

So, enjoy your weekend

Once you got home, you’d ask yourself, “Why in the hell did I just do that?”

You’d have no good answer, but many bad ones.

I just wanted to prove I could do it. (So what’s next, proving you can survive a fiery 10-car pile-up on the freeway?)
I wanted to be there for my teammates. (Who think you suck and who were embarrassed by your miserable performance in THEIR team colors.)
I think it will help my crit racing. (You are now, in addition to being officially crazy, officially stupid.)
I was goaded into it by guilt and by the Wankmeister. (Add “officially pathetic” to the list.)
It was a good chance to get some quality racing miles under my belt. (No, it wasn’t, unless you plan to do future races at 12 mph.)
I’ve heard so much about Boulevard that I just had to do it. (Yes, but have you ever heard anything good about it? No? Me, either.)
I wanted to see if it was as tough as mountain biking. (Nothing is tougher than mountain biking simply because trees and boulders have zero give when you hit them with your forehead at 35 mph. But nothing hurts like a hard road race…haven’t you ever seen or heard of the Tour de France?)
I wanted to get out for the weekend. (East San Diego County isn’t “out.” It’s “in,” as in “in the crapper.”)

Of course by now the car is packed and you’re headed down to the race. Good luck. You’ll need it, along with a miracle. And in case you didn’t get the memo, there are no miracles. On race day at Boulevard, there are only sad stories of failure, defeat, and enduring the awful for no good reason. This…

…is bike racing.

News from around the Empire

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News from around the Empire
by Seth Davidson

As of today I’m free at last, free at last, thank Dog almighty I’m free at last. “Why?” you ask. Because henceforth when I get asked The Question(s) about The Cyclist I get to say, after thoughtfully furrowing my brow, this: “Well, it’s a good question. I suggest you go out and ride your bicycle in order to answer it.”

Elbow testing: Junkyard thwacked his rebuilt elbow yesterday at the start of the NPR, right where the electronic circuitry connected to the shoulder bone, which was connected to the brain bone, which was connected to the new PV Kit bone, which got shredded and tore a hole bigger than Dallas. The ‘bow, however, is rock solid minus a touch of cosmetic road wear. They DID build him better than he was before.

Bellyflop: Neumann/aka Hockeystick/now known as “Belly” did a track stand at the turnaround on the NPR, had his wheel chopped, and tumbled off his bicycle. No harm done, and he was quickly helped by Rahsaan. He did, however, bounce when he hit. I’ve never seen that before. Belly, time to try the South Bay Wanker Diet. It’s painful, but it works and it’s free. PS: Track stands in the middle of swirling roadie packs = Numbskullish.

First blood: Charon Smith scored his first win of the year at Ontario last week, finishing so far ahead of the field that he had time to completely recover from his sprint effort and shave his head by the time he crossed the line. The finish photo shows everyone with teeth gritted, faces twisted, bodies hunched over the bars looking like they’re running from a zombie army, and Charon with arms raised, mouth closed, and no visible signs of exertion as he cruises to the win. I’m pretty sure there were some intense post-race team huddles at MRI/Monster Media, and they went like this:

“Don’t ever let it finish in a bunch sprint again, dogdammit!”

“I told you we’re going to have to break away to win! Only way to outsprint Charon is by making him do the 1/2 races, where he belongs.”

“We can’t have him in a break, ever!”

“At CBR we’ll attack the entire race until we get away!”

“If we work together with the other 99 riders in the race, we might have a chance!”

Etc.

By the way, good luck with that plan!

Get ready for CBR: The first South Bay crit of the year happens on Sunday when Chris Lotts puts on the Dominguez Hills Anger Crit Thingy. Please show up to support local road racing in SoCal. Yes, you’ll be pack meat, just like last year. So what?

Winter’s over: The South Bay endured seven (some say eight) days of brutal winter this month, where early temperatures got down to 39, and the highs never crested 65. Thankfully, the bitter temperatures are over, and we’re slowly returning to lows in the high 40’s, highs in the high 70’s. Don’t put away your heavy winter clothing yet, but for sure rotate it to the back of the closet.

Bad wind news: G$ is in Scottsdale testing his bike position in a wind tunnel. Great. A faster G$. Just what those of us in the Elderly Fellows category need.

Gitcher waffle on: The Belgian Waffle Ride is set for April 7, 2013. It will be the hardest one-day ride of the year, where chicken tactics, wheelsucking, and letting others do all the work will earn you nothing more than infamy and a purple card. This will be first and foremost a contest between you and the road. Finish it and you’ll know satisfaction!

Mad props to Dorothy: The 2012 cyclocross season has ended in SoCal, and it couldn’t have gone better or been done without the extraordinary efforts and work and innovation and enthusiasm of Dorothy Wong. I bailed after about ten races. That shit is hard. Next year, which I suppose would be this year, I’ll be in for the whole season now that I know what I’m in for. Thanks to Dorothy for making ‘cross such a success.

Equipment flail: After dissing on my Night Rider lighting system and replacing it with the tube-shaped Serfas light, I can happily report that the Serfas is far superior except that it shuts off every time I hit a bump, and after about four or five bumps it won’t restart without a 1-minute pause or longer. That’s a long-ass time when you’re bombing down VdM on Bull’s wheel at dark-thirty. For $150.00 you’d almost expect something that would work, but then you remember, “It’s an elite cycling product, so of course it’s a pile of shit unless you spend at least $500.00.”

Smooth looking skin: Since incorporating kimchi into my diet, Mrs. Wankmeister has advised me that my skin is softer, more lustrous, and gradually shedding the leathery, scaly, rough, scabbed-over look that comes with road cycling. Though I don’t give a rat’s ass about the beauty aspect, I do believe that healthier skin will stave off the skin cancer in my future for at least a year or two, and Professor Google confirms that kimchi is the wonderfood for healthy skin. The downside of course are the kimchi farts. Those things are vicious, however, they too have a beneficial effect on skin, as anyone on your wheel gets an instant facial dermal peel when one of those suckers rips into their face. You have to be careful, though, because they can also melt the polarizing slits on your expensive cycling glasses.

Wankmeister cycling clinic #17

 

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Wankmeister cycling clinic #17: coaching assistance for the New Year

By Seth Davidson

http://pvcycling.wordpress.com/

Dear Wankmeister:

Every year I buy the updated version of Joe Friel’s training bible, re-up with Training Peaks, subscribe to a new set of Hunter Allen’s power-based training plans, and hire the services of a cycling-specific nutritionist.

And every year I still suck.

So instead of blowing my Christmas gift money on charlatans and fraudsters, I thought I’d hit up a fraudster like you because you’re, like, free.

What I need are New Year resolutions to improve my cycling.

Wankmeister, help me!

In extremis,
Puddly Piddles

Dear Puddly:

Ride more.

Succinctly,
Wankmeister

Dear Wankmeister:

I know you knocked off the booze couple of years ago, and except for a couple of one-off drinks you’ve been dry as a bone. I don’t have a “drinking problem,” but I do drink a lot, I mean, like, a case of beer before dinner and a case for dessert. If I quit drinking, what changes can I expect? Will my cycling performance improve?

Staggeringly,
Sammy Swillsabunch

Dear Sammy:

If you quit drinking, I guarantee that you are sober. Will your cycling performance improve? No.

Bluntly,
Wankmeister

Dear Wankmeister:

I’ve been totally following your South Bay Biker Hunger Starvation Diet From Hell Diet it is awesome I would love to do it but it sounds so terrible that I’ve been putting it off like flossing. Now that you’ve done the self-guinea pig thing I have a zillion questions about how it’s affected your cycling performance I don’t even know where to begin you’ve lost a ton man that’s awesome I bet you climb like Lucien van Armstrong now huh?

Frothingly,
Tommy Tubbs

Dear Tommy:

The only thing you will get from my diet, or any other, is hungry.

Gnawingly,
Wankmeister

Dear Wankmeister:

I know this is off the topic, but what do you think about Lance and Oprah and the whole confession thing? Pretty crazy, huh?

Starstricken,
Sella Britty

Dear Sella:

Yes.

So over Lancedly,
Wankmeister