I don’t care about any of the riders that got busted.
But, Mancebo? How could you?
I don’t care about any of the riders that got busted.
But, Mancebo? How could you?
I started this season with three established goals that I told everyone about in an earlier post. I wanted to finish the year with a Cat3 license on the road, a Cat2 license on the track and have a sub 1:12:00 kilo at the State Kilo Championships in August. I am happy to cross one of those items off of that list!
I got upgraded to a cat3 on the road last night. I am in shock. Actually it is a little bit more Awe than Shock. Perhaps it is a little something I like to call “Shock and Awe.” After a long deliberation process I finally bit the bullet and decided to ask for my upgrade. Originally I had planned to wait till after Superweek, but with my participation in doubt I decided to go ahead and get the sticker now so, if I want to participate at Superweek I won’t have to pre-register in order to get entered into the fields.
Like an idiot I upgraded right before the State Road Race Championships down in Peoria. Somehow, I got milked into going with the Courteous Fellow and Jason “Good To Go” Alvarado. I can’t wait to camp out with them and get ripped to shreds in the Cat3 field. I am a little nervous for my first Cat3 race. I haven’t trained for anything road related in over a month and a half. Everything I have done has been for the track. I just hope that a break goes up the road in my race and all of the big teams are represented and I can sit in the pack all the way to the finish.
I am sure that TeamClifBar is sending out a secret team email about my upgrade and I might find myself in a ditch choking on a nasty IcedOatmealRaisanBananaNut Builder Bar. But, I am still excited for the possibility of riding one more time with Alan. He probably has a lot of “pain” to throw down on me this weekend. Either way it will be fun sitting in the back of a pack of a lot better racers than me. When I say “sitting” I mean struggling to keep in with the pack. Please oh please let a break go up the road. Please. Do it for Super-Rookie.com. You already beat one of my friends in a race and now I won’t be able to hang. I am in “track mode.”
I am now officially a pretend bike racer. Entering the cat3’s is kind of like making a junior hockey team. You are surrounded by a bunch of good players, and a bunch of players that think they are really good.
I went up to Northbrook to watch the Courteous Fellow, Ansgar, Rick Dearworth and the Harrison’s race. They all did fairly well. The Courteous Fellow got severely screwed when the officials didn’t score the Snowball properly. He went off the front for two laps and clearly won a sprint, but they gave him second place points for it. How hard is it for three judges AND a video camera to get that wrong?
I don’t get it. The cat3 field looked rather strong, but a lot of racers didn’t show up because of the big weekend ahead down in Peoria.
Sounds like the boys back home did fairly well out in Blaine. Not to bad of a week for everyone. The MCF board has been heating up with discussions about proper results and promotion of racing. People need to stop taking the MCF for granted. To properly appreciate what you have sometimes you need to take a step away from it to fully understand. This is the case in life in many different aspects.
GopherJ gave me a call and assured me that he and SuperFriend Matt are going to be taking me out for a “guy’s night out.” I can’t wait. I bragged about my future tickets to Gopher Football games and I could hear the wheels turning in GopherJ’s head. I will definitely miss those two guys.
Oh. I predict that the Tour De France won’t start on time as there will be a huge rider protest because of the Operation Puerto ordeal. My friend Sparky is in Spain right now and is getting me some of the newspapers. I am stoked to have the real primary source!
Francisco Mancebo is the most underrated rider in the 2006 Tour De France. He gets a big award from Super-Rookie.com.
What award is that?
I will continue to aspire to ride like him during really long, painful races.
For the past month Smithers has been begging all of us to participate in his 1st Annual Tour de France Pool. Since, I couldn’t resist his smile I decided to go along and enter a team and even convince Sarah to put one in as well. The pool is real simple. There are a total of 300 possible points. You get big points for correctly naming the final podium as well as the winners of the Green and Polka Dot jerseys. You get some minor points for correctly picking the winners of the Prologue, Alpe d’ Huez and Champs de lee zay. He also decided to add in a best team category as well as the wearer of the Yellow Jersey on both of the rest days.
39 people felt sorry for Smithers and decided to enter his little game. He just posted the picks and I have already gone through them and see that my podium is unique as are some of my other picks.
Before I decipher the picks I would like to point out my goals for this game.
1) Beat (dis)pencer.
2) Beat SickBoy.
3) Not fail at 1 or 2 as I will never hear the end of it.
Now that you have seen my goals I will let you know my selections for the upcoming Tour Day France Pool over at Smithersmpls.com
1st Place Overall- Jan Ullrich
I know this pick isn’t unique, but he is going to win the overall. I feel that Basso blew his wad at the Giro and won’t have enough to hold off Der Kaiser in the time trials. It is Jan’s year.
2nd Place Overall- Francisco Mancebo
Yeah. Only one other person picked him to finish 2nd and only one more took him for 3rd overall. This man is the best rider in Spain. Everyone talks about Valverde, but Mancebo finally has a strong support rider in Moreau and was one of the only men to stay with Lance and Basso in the mountains these past 2 years. Mancebo is going to blow everyone away. His two 4th places are not enough for this man. Watch out.
3rd Place Overall- Levi Leipheimer
Levi just cleaned up at the Dauphine and did it in pure style with his attacking on Mt. Ventoux and making Mencov be his little bitch. Levi will take down Landis for the final step in Paris. Plus, Levi is awesome.
Green Jersey (points) – Robbie McEwen
Robbie would of won the jersey last year but got screwed with the headbutt ordeal. You should seal his victory up right now. Thor is solid, but can’t sprint against McEwen and Tom Boonen is to busy trying to steal my girlfriend to even finish the Tour.
Polka Dot Jersey (mountains) – Rujano
Rujano is the big question mark on my roster. He dominated this competition in the Giro last year and this year he had a contract problem with his former team. He dropped out of the race after launching an attack and went back to Venezuela to train, or smoke weed, you decide. Only one other person picked Rujano for this competition.
Team Classification – Team CSC
How can you not pick the team that goes to Combat Training Camp? They will dominate in this category. That is a Super-Rookie.com Guarantee.
Prologue – Bradley Wiggens
This was an easy pick for the short 7km prologue time trial. Wiggens is the defending Olympic Gold Medalist in the Pursuit and is a trackie. Great minds think alike. Skibby picked him as well.
Alpe d’ Huez – Gilberto Simoni
Simoni will win on the Alpe and will drop out of the race the next day. After another solid Giro he will be concentrating on this stage. If he is in a break watch for him asking others to pay him for a stage victory. But, he knows that I picked him and he will purposely say to high of a number.
Champs dee lay zay – Hushvold
Thor will win this stage of the race because Robbie doesn’t care to win it. Thor also has a much cooler sounding name.
Yellow Jersey Rest Day July 10 – Basso
I didn’t really think to hard about this one, but I did pick Basso. I will be the first to say I am an idiot for this pick. I should of went with Jaske or Voight, but oh well. It is after the first time trial. Basso definitely won’t have it. Oh well. I am man enough to admit my mistakes.
Yellow Jersey Rest Day July 17 – Ullrich
Jan will climb with the best of them through the Pyrenees and will take the jersey just prior to the rest day. Jan will wear the Yellow all the way to Paris and will retire upon stepping down from the podium. He will then have his victory taken away later in the year when he gets caught up in the Spanish doping scandal.
Analysis of picks.
- All 39 teams had Basso or Ullrich as winning the Tour. 23 for Basso and 16 for Ullrich.
- Ullrich was the most popular pick for 2nd place. The only other 2nd place picks not Ullrich and Basso were Mancebo(2), Hincapie(1), Landis (5), Mayo (1), Evans (1), Popovych (1).
- Third place was all over the board. 4 teams held strong and selected Vinokourov for the third spot although his participation in the tour is doubtful.
- Boonen had 25 picks for the Green Jersey. 9 for McEwen. 2 for Hushvold and 1 for O’Grady, Zabel and Freire.
- There were quite a few picks for the Mountains competition. Rasmussen was the hands down favorite with 18 picks. Only 1 other person picked Rujano with me. The same person that picked Mancebo for second. Way to go Cricket!!! You rock girl.
- CSC was the most popular team picked with 22 selections. Disco next followed by T-Mobile and a few single picks for Gerolsteiner, Casgne’, and Credit Agricole. One person picked Astana-Wurth. I will keep my fingers crossed for them!
- Zabriske is the run away favorite for the Prologue.
- Valverde is getting the nod from a lot of people to win atop the Alpe d’ Huez. I think it is a very smart pick. But, I am happy with my Simoni selection.
- All three of the main sprinters scored well on the Champs dee lay zay stage. But, I like the pick of Backstedt by ‘Fride’
- First restday had the popular pick of Ullrich. ‘Paul Comeau’ selected Voekler…perhaps another glorious run in the jersey for the man from France!
- The final restday was a landslide towards Basso. Right after the Pyrenees before the last big days in the Alps and last TT.
- Sickboy is playing the numbers game and is being a statistical numbers geek and picked Basso to finish 1st, 2nd and 3rd on the podium. What a douche. But, he is kind of smart so I won’t give him a hard time on that…except he isn’t any fun. I do applaud his pick of Perio in the Mtns Comp.
- (dis)pencer will lose.
- I am fairly disappointed in Tuffy’s picks. They are so run of the mill. I was expecting more.
- Sarah has a nice line up of riders. She will also beat (dis)pencer.
- A big hearty “good luck” to Tyler’s Bad Boys for picking Astana-Wurth in the Team Classification!
I had a lot of fun out at Kenosha last night. The schedule for the cat3’s was as follows; Sprint Heats, Sprint Final, Snowball, Main Event Madison or Consolation Points (for cat3s outside of the money). I went into the night not having a Madison partner, nor the desire to race it. So, the plan was to get into the Consolation race and work for Ansgar and Matt Moran who are getting very close to being able to move up to the cat3s. I thought this was important because Ed White and I could sure use a lot more company in the cat3s!
I was in the first heat of the Sprint. The sprint was basically a 3 lap scratch race. Most of the time sprints first lap and a half are relatively slow with everyone marking each other and playing the waiting game. But, some punk decided to “kilo” everybody at the start and got a huge gap. I played my cards by waiting for the others to chase knowing that they would because they two teammates in the field. That gambled paid off and I won my heat by about a bike length over the rest of the field…including the failed kilo-er.
When I say “kilo” in a sprint it means that the individual is trying to win it a long way out. This of course is very hard to do, but from time to time it works because it forces you to chase and exert a lot of energy. The “kilo” refers to the 3 laps of a tt event. The same distance as the match sprint. The Little Guy once tried to “kilo” Captain Midnight up in Blaine. He almost had him that time.
I got into the second heat as did my teammate and two teammates from Beans and Barley. There were two other guys in the heat, but for the most part I decided I was going to keep that guy from trying to “kilo” us again. I chose the bottom starting position and from the gun I was in the front and brought the entire field to the top of the track. I found my ‘enemy’ and boxed him in at the rail. I positioned myself so he could slow down and come around me, nor accelerate over me. Basically, I looked, really pro, like the Taint.
As I was marking at the top of the track I could see him getting really frustrated with his positioning. It was really fun. Going into the bell lap a jump came from behind and I chased. I was in second wheel coming out of turn 4 and I ‘sat-up’ as I came in to avoid getting in the money. I got 4th for my troubles. But, damn it was fun.
The second race was a snowball. I got the points on lap 3 and finished a little behind the pack to take 4th place again. One spot out of the money. Sweet. Mission Acomplished. So, I thought. Turns out that Kenosha pays to 4 deep! I had screwed up. Oh, well.
I lined up for the points race and went to the front right away and ran a team sprint for Matt on the first 4 laps. When I came around for the bell I shot straight up turn ½ and Matt took the first lap points. I reintegrated and went to the front again and did the same exact thing for Ansgar who took the second sprint. At this point I bagged it and called it a night as I didn’t want to get myself, nor the team in trouble for racing in the Consolation. Ansgar ended up pulling off the victory and will be a cat3 next week. Matt took 3rd and had a real good night of racing and should be in the 3’s as well.
The best part of the night wasn’t the 4th meal we had at Taco Bell. It was being able to race in front of Sarah for once down here in Chicagoland. I hope she had fun.
Listen to the NPR story on Lance Armstrong. I am particularly looking in the direction of a few people. These two individuals read my blog daily and are very important to me. One of them lives on the gulf coast in Florida. The other lives in St. Paul and comments from time to time.
Here is the link. Tell me. Do you still think that Lance is innocent? Or, does everyone just want to come after him?
I will have my Tour De France line-up soon.
I was checking my old email account the other day and as I was filtering my way through all of the spam and useless garbage that is usually in there I got a nice note from the President of the Southwest Youth Hockey Association. The president wanted to know if I was interested in once again coaching at the association for the upcoming year. Instantly I forwarded the email to my friend BGotch19 who had coached with me for 3 seasons at SWYHA.
We didn’t know what to say or do at first. We were both honored by getting an unsolicited email from SWYHA, but at the same time we didn’t instantly feel the need to jump at the offer. We had spent a lot of time with them and felt that we kept getting caught up in the politics of coaching kids. We were two 20 year old kids that loved hockey and wanted to teach kids how to play and act accordingly on and off the ice. I feel that we excelled at doing that.
The decision to move to Chicago wasn’t official until the day that I got the call from the Athletic Director at Southwest Minneapolis High School. The call was regarding my application and interviewing for the head coaching position at the High School. I made it to the finalist stage and was outgunned by an individual that had loftier credentials than me. But, I felt that I had come along way since my start with the association. An individual on the hiring committee said that I was a strong candidate and had phenomenal references from individuals and families with children that I had coached. When I didn’t get the position I knew that it was time to move on and come to Chicago.
Now, BGotch19 and I are being approached once again to coach at SWYHA. We have given a lot to them and feel that if we come back we need to coach the top team. The Bantam A’s. I doubt they are going to give us that team. There has always been politics involved with who gets to coach what kids. So, perhaps another year will roll by without the feeling of standing behind the bench and yelling at a bunch of kids.
The number one rule of our team was; NEVER HAVE FUN!
Sometimes people take themselves too seriously. That is almost always the case when it comes to youth sports.
Nothing cycling related. Holy Balls.
The Senate is going to vote on a Flag Burning Ammendment (I don’t care how to spell it). I am sure that it is going to pass. I naturally don’t agree with this as the Republicans are looking for anything to label the Democrats un-patriotic. I don’t even agree with Burning the Flag. But, that is because I think it is a waste of time to even recognize the government…
But, I will be donating some money to some kid’s legal defense fun when he gets caught burning a flag with 47 stars on it. I bet most of these “patriots” that are pushing for this ban don’t even know that a flag with 47 stars never existed.
I had to post this one. It is just to funny…
Times are getting pretty tough here in Chicago. For instance, Sarah went into work on Saturday to get some overtime while the clinic got its carpets and floors cleaned. She was there for over 10 hours. We are doing all we can to save up money and then I go and spoil that by racing in Whitewater and wasting a hard earned $20.
I normally don’t talk about money on here. I know that I am better off than most people in this city and country because I have a roof over my head and have food to eat. But, the next few weeks are going to be really tough. We are going to be paying double rent and I am continuing to make not so much money at the bike shop. Couple all of this with the price of moving and how expensive racing is I think something is going to have to go.
I will still show up at Kenosha this week and the week after, but I definitely can’t go to Proctor for the State Road Race Championships. Between paying for my race entry and the cost of gas and lodging I have to consider myself out of this one. I am kind of leaning towards skipping Superweek altogether as well because I can’t afford to miss anymore work. I don’t want to admit that I might have to miss Superweek because I have planned on going all year, but it wouldn’t be fiscally responsible of me to race there.
Some people may think that this is a joke. But, sadly it is not. I might still do one of the weekend races, but without the likes of the Courteous Fellow, (dis)pencer, Little Guy and Tuffy making their way up to the races I am able to do I will have to bag my hopes. If you put all of this together with the fact that I got killed in the crit the other day it might be a wise decision not to do so many races.
So, there you have it. I am going to go to Superweek for one race. The crit in Mantiowac with the Courteous Fellow (if he agrees to this) and then asking for my cat3 upgrade. Hopefully I will get my upgrade and I can put a big checkmark next to one of the three season goals on my list. Sometimes, I have to remind myself that I shouldn’t get to down on my road performances. I have never really enjoyed riding on the road all that much and I have only done it in the past for training. In my opinion, I race, train, live for the track when it comes to cycling.
*Kenosha is still on. I am usually able to atleast win back a little bit of my entry fee…
The isht is about to hit the fan with the linking of Jan Ullrich to the Operacion Puerto doping affair that is going on over in Spain. Read this link on cyclingnews.com to get your fill.
The best part about this article is the little bit on Tyler Hamilton. Funny that his wife, Haven, is his biggest supporter….makes you think.
Also, how can people continue to think that Lance, Vino etc… are innocent.
Today as you may have read earlier I went to a race in Wisconsin. I wasn’t totally excited about this as I got to bed real late and didn’t sleep to well. I was hoping to have a fun race with the Courteous Fellow and Jason. Oh boy did we have fun!
We showed up about an hour and a half before the race. I went to the registration in the middle of the parking lot on the campus of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. I asked around where the course was and then I saw a pack of racers go by…in the parking lot. Yep, the parking lot.
I will admit now that I wasn’t totally stoked to race in a parking lot. Well, the race wasn’t totally in a parking lot, there was a little stretch of road that the race traveled on. That road contained a few open driveways with cars entering and leaving, as well as, a section of road way fenced off for construction. So, to all of those racers that did the Hutchinson crit and said it was sketchy I will see your bet and raise you a shit-ton more. The best part of this course was the section when you got off the road and entered the parking lot on a real sketchy lip of concrete.
About a quarter of the way through the race I found myself near the back of the pack of about 40 racers and told the Courteous Fellow, “Fuck this shit. This sucks.” The Fellow could only nod in agreement as we both avoided getting anywhere next to a Baraboo Sharks rider that was all over the road…er…parking lot.
I then found myself sprinting out of corners to hang on to the pack. That sucked. Then a South Chicago Wheelmen guy flatted in front of me and I had to hit my brakes hard to avoid him. At this point I was pretty blown and I had to unclip to avoid going down. I finished the lap and went to the official and told him of the crash. He asked if I went down. Since I hadn’t gone down he said no to the free lap. I wasn’t in the mood to fight it, nor did I really care about the race.
I had absolutely no fitness and I probably would have gotten dropped on my own. Actually, I did get dropped on my own. A real racer would have dug deep and gotten back onto the pack. But, I am a pretend racer so I don’t really care. Maybe I will quit the team.
The Courteous Fellow and Luke stayed strong and stuck it out to the end. I guess there was a nasty crash going into the real sketchy turn that took Luke out. Matt ended up taking 9th but was also affected by the crash. Maybe it was good that I wasn’t in the end of the race.
I was pretty bummed about the race and left the lovely parking lot at UW-W with a bad taste in my mouth. Jason wasn’t feeling so hot either after his tough race in the cat5s. But, everything changed when we found out in the car that Jason (our resident Mexican on the team) had never eaten at a Taco Bell. So, naturally, the Courteous Fellow and I took him to the Fiesta that is also known as Taco Bell. He was really fascinated with all of the options of food that are made with the same 8 ingredients.
I was shocked to find out that Chalupas aren’t a common staple of the Mexican family diet. According to Jason the taco at Taco Bell wasn’t all that great. But, the Crunch Wrap Supreme was “Good. Good to go.” The fact that I got to help make a hard working Med Student take in all of the culture America has to offer made me feel really good.
Thank you Taco Bell!
Sunday at 2pm is the one of the only NASCAR races that is worth watching. While some of you are big time haters of NASCAR I will assure you that watching the telecast at 2pm CST is going to be awesome. Why? Because it is one of the two road races that are on the Nextel Cup Schedule this year.
Some of the best drivers in the world will actually be turning their car to the right! How awesome is that? I think it is pretty cool and I am a track racer. Speaking of which, that may be a valid excuse for my lack of skills at the crit today. Whatever the excuse is I didn’t do very well today. But, I do know that Jeremy Mayfield is not going to do very well. He doesn’t do to well with right handers. But, I will be pulling for Kasey Kahne. That is because he is #9.
I will say that Jimmie Johnson has a good shot at winning on Sunday. He has a decent history with this course and as (dis)pencer will surely point out he is #48. I think that #48 is goign to be #86ed out of the race for doing something illegal.
On Saturday (dis)pencer and The Little Guy suited up for the big State Road Race Championships back home in Minnesota. While you would assume that both of them would run away with the victory Tuffy and his Cat6 Racing Squad stood in their way. From what I have heard from all of the big players of the race is that Tuffy launched tons of furious attacks and got a good 15min gap on everybody. I heard it was his superior climbing skills. Later in the race The Little Guy led a crazy decent that was reminiscent of Il Falco at the 2005 Giro. This brought the pack up to Tuffy who was blown off the back and (dis)pencer went to town and fell just a few meters short of taking the overall title with an admirable 5th place finish.
This may or may not have happened. I do know that all three are good riders and I can’t wait to race with them in August. Hmmmm. What am I alluding to?
For some reason I said “okay” to my two teammates and will be getting in a car shortly to drive 2 hours for a Crit.
As some of you may know another allegation against Lance Armstrong hit the French press. This allegation has an interesting twist as Betsy and Frankie Andreu are the main witnesses. I won’t go into all of the gritty details, but once again Lance has some close personal friends that are coming out against him and he has already started the “swiftboating” of the Andreu name. He says that Betsy “must have a grudge against him, and Frank is only supporting her statements because he is married to her.” Wow. Why do people close to Lance in the end always come out and say something about him and he destroys there character instantly.
I still don’t understand how people can have believe this pig. He is a cheater.
Oh. Lance also discredits the Andreu claim, that was made in an court case over an unpaid debt from and insurance company, by having a signed affidavit from his doctor, Craig Nichols. In the affidavit Nichols claims to have never asked the important questions. I think it is in the best interest of everyone that it is know that Dr. Nichols is on the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Immmmmaaaaagggggiiiiiinnnnnneeeeee Thaaaaaaaat.
But, it will all just get written off as a French witch-hunt.
Can someone remind me why I agreed to do this damn crit in Wisconsin? I think it has something to do with listening to Rush and Iron Maiden while hanging out with a few friends on some country roads.
The Minnesota State Road Race Chumpionships is today. It is a sweet course. It features a tough climb and some flat open roads where wind can play a major factor. Before the big climb there is a nice mile long decent along some crappy roads that can really blow the race apart. I wish all of the luck in the world to the Little Guy, (dis)pencer, Gilby! and SickBoy as they go for the championship.
The only person I wish mild luck for is Tuffy. And that is because it is Tuffy.
Courtesy of Sparky in Spain.
He found this for me and I thought it was pretty funny. Especially with the recent “I care what people think posts.”
How did the name “rookie” originate for first-year players?
Although the term “rookie” is used mostly to describe first-year athletes, it can refer to anyone new on the job. There are rookie cops, rookie rodeo clowns, even rookie presidents. You name the occupation, and odds are it’s got rookies in way over their heads.
ESPN credits author Rudyard Kipling with the first usage. In his “Barrack-Room Ballads,” published in 1892, Kipling writes “So ‘ark an’ ‘eed you rookies/Which is grumblin’ sore.”
Ask Oxford believes “rookie” might be an alteration of the word “recruit.” Eh, maybe so, but that’s a pretty dull explanation. The Word Detective postulates a different and far more interesting theory. They believe “rookie” comes from “rook,” a European and Asian bird famous for annoying farmers.
According to the Word Detective, in the 16th century the word “came into use as a disparaging epithet for a person of low repute” and later applied to the easily conned or fooled. See the connection? 1.) A rook is an annoying bird. 2.) Rook becomes slang for a disliked person. 3.) Rook comes to mean a gullible person. 4.) Those with experience call the newer workers “rooks” because they’re believed to be easily fooled.
And there ya have it — the rookie’s roundabout story.