Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Roaring In

It started as a whisper. A slight smell in the air, a hint of cold in the morning. Really, it gave me plenty of warning but I chose to ignore it, not wanting to admit that summer was coming to a close. There's no ignoring it now though. Every leaf in town exclaims, "Fall!"

Fall is actually my favorite time of year in Colorado. Cool nights give way to warm afternoons that continually re-define the term "bluebird day." Trails are tacky and can be ridden without an agenda since most major races are behind me. Yet there is still a certain urgency in the air. Knowing that in a few weeks it may snow and put an end to mountain biking for months is all the motivation one needs to get out the door.

The team spent several days last week in Las Vegas at Interbike and now are beginning to turn their focus to cyclocross and the final mtb race of the year, Iceman.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Jury Duty Would Have Been Better...

Well, turns out jury duty may have been the better choice after all. Who would've thought? About an hour into the first stage of the Breck Epic, I was descending a high speed fire road when I got caught in a rough line, hit a rock awkwardly and lost my front wheel. It was a hard fall, but I took inventory of my bones and bike (both fine) and started in pursuit of the leaders. Almost right away I knew something was wrong because I was breathing really rapidly for my level of exertion. I knew there was an aid station a few miles away, and began a very, very slow walk. I thought maybe I'd just bruised myself and would recover enough to finish the stage after some time with the nice aid station folks, but I continued to be short of breath and every bump in the road was painful--not conducive conditions for a high altitude mountain bike race. I got a ride to my car from...Dave, I believe ( a Breck ski patroller) and headed to the ER where they declared I'd collapsed some of my lung. Hopefully it heals itself over night and I can avoid getting a tube put in there. In the meantime I'm kicking back and prepping for a new Mad Men, which is probably what I'd be doing anyways--just not in a hospital bed while hooked up to an IV and oxygen. Bummed to say the least; even after just an hour it was clear to me that the Breck Epic is a sweet race.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Fool's Gold and other Team News

Amanda Carey wins her 3rd NUE Series race, taking the Fo0l's Gold 100 in conditions so bad, the race was shortened to spare the athletes. Amanda is now 3 for 3 in the NUE Series races she's entered this season. She'll be going for the series title in a few weeks.

Colin is off and running at the Breck Epic. Updates coming all week long.

Read Judy's "My Life as a Bike Jockey on

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Athlete Update from Andy Schultz

After Nationals I have gone into hibernation from racing. Prior to Nationals I raced five weekends in a row and I felt like it was time to take advantage of a gap in the schedule to focus on training and getting faster as opposed to tapering for races every weekend. My training block started off with a bunch of long high country rides in Durango. These rides are all over 10,000 feet so the weather window to ride them is really small so it was nice to have a chance to take advantage of them. The air is so thin up there it feels like you are breathing through a straw but it is worth it to ride ribbon thin singletrack with a backdrop of peaks and wildflowers. The monsoon season is here which means we get some rain almost every afternoon. This leaves the trails tacky and my Small Block 8's stick to the them like white on rice and I've been ripping some really fun descents. After I got my fill of thin air I began to draw down the volume and bring up the intensity in preparation for the final races of the season. This weekend I'll crawl out of my hibernation cave and stretch with a Mountain States Cup race in Telluride, CO and then it will be time to hop on a plane and head to NY for the final big race of my season, the Windham World Cup.

Athlete Update from Colin Cares

A few weeks ago, the stage profiles for the Breck Epic looked innocent
enough. Now however, with the start fast approaching and some pre-rides
under my belt, the reality of what those squiggly profile lines indicate
is beginning to set in. I got some sage advice about recovery from
Amanda, which seems to be one of the biggest factors in a stage race like
this. In that respect, I should be in good hands since Hammer Nutrition
will be present providing valuable product and information. Today, I’ve
been getting my bike dialed and set-up with fresh Small Block 8 tires,
which I’ve found to be super reliable, both in terms of handling
characteristics and being tough to cut or burp. Still, having confidence
in my equipment only assuages my fears so much…I still have to do the

My participation in this race was actually thrown into jeopardy yesterday
when I reported for jury duty and was selected to a jury for a case that
was expected to last through next week. I had to stand up in front of the
judge, lawyers, and 60 other prospective jurors and describe my situation.
The judge seemed quite skeptical that I was professional mountain bike
racer and was unsympathetic, to say the least. After quite a bit of
pointed questioning, I was finally dismissed and practically ran out of
the courtroom before he could change his mind.

With a little luck finding internet access in Breckenridge, I’ll post
daily race reports for those that want to follow my progress. No matter
how much I suffer, it will still be better than jury duty.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Athlete Update from Judy Freeman

After Nationals, August started out with the Crankworx festival in Winter Park. I finished in 4th on the 26 mile point-to-point past the neighboring town of Fraiser back to the Winter Park Resort. The next weekend was the Colorado State Championships at Keystone. Amanda and I both rolled up to the XC and pulled in 3rd and 2nd respectively. Keystone has a lot of climbing, but a sweet descent payoff. The next day's short track brought another 2nd year! Decided to head to high country for a little riding in Crested Butte and on Monarch Crest trail. 3 days of R&R. We'll not really, someone in the group was always turning the screws. But it was 3 days of epic climbs, epic views and super sweet single track descents. Next stop....the World Cup Series Finals in Windham, New York with Andy. Wish us luck!