Friday, July 20, 2007

Up, Down and All Around



Sometimes life throws you a curveball, you just hope that it’s not coming from Nolan Ryan or Randy Johnson, even after they retire! This time it wasn’t really a hit batter, it was more of a strike out, but Jami has made up her mind that things are over. That’s a bummer for me, no doubt. I’ll be moving in with teammate Brandon Archibald soon.
Anyways, I went to Nationals and got a respectable but not exactly what I had hoped for 9th place in the time trial, 30 seconds back of the winner. I went as hard as I could, I do not question that. The top 3 were separated by .24 of a second! They calculated out the difference between first and second was less than 5 feet at 30+mph over nearly 15 miles, amazing! Okay, so we did 78,144 feet of racing and the difference between first and second was 5! Second place went 99.9936% as fast as first place and lowly third was all of 10 feet behind second or 99.98% as fast as first place. The timing was very accurate as well since we rolled over a sensor at both the start and finish lines. Had I done one of the better time trials of my life, the win would have been very possible. I’m pretty sure that the problem is that I’ve lost a bit of weight lately and that won’t help flat course time trialing. Oh well, that’s life. That night, we had to go pick up one of our teammates that was flying in for the road race. He was slated to show up at 11:30pm and the drive is a little over an hour from Seven Springs to Pittsburgh on open roads. We found out that the road we needed was completely closed for the weekend and the detour was extremely slow. Even a local bus driver had a tough time coming up with a re-route for us. End result: we get back to the condo at 3am and none of the partying to show for it. Luckily we had a couple days between races and nothing major to do but kill time (sleep). The road race went better and worse at the same time. The form was clearly there and a great place was definitely possible, but an ill timed flat on the second of three laps effectively took me out of the race. Oh well, that’s life… did I say that before somewhere? The racing went alright all things considered and the trip was fun too. The condo we were staying in was at the top of a ski hill that had a two lane alpine slide! How cool is that?! And what do bike racers do when in any competitive situation? RACE! It was on like Donkey Kong. I won round 1, but was taking a picture at the start of round 2 and lost out on the quick start and even messed up the picture trying to make up ground. After alpine slide racing, we found out that Somerset County, PA is a dry county other than at the Seven Springs resort which bought up all of the liquor licenses, so if by any chance you ever decide that visiting Seven Springs is in your future, BYOB or drink cheap beer for good beer prices.


In the between time from the time trial to the road race, we did some riding on the local roads and we went down a decent that can only be described as AWESOME! I hit my new max speed on a bike down it, 64.9mph!
After the road race, the condos went from hustling/bustling to cleared out and empty. It was all over, we packed up our bikes and headed back to Pittsburgh for the night before flying out the next morning. We had a night to spend doing whatever in Pittsburgh, so we decided that a quick bite and hitting the bar scene would be the way to go. To do that, it required driving around aimlessly for a couple hours. Not really lost I guess since we didn’t really know what exactly it was we were looking for. At some point, our stomachs desire for food took over the desire for just the right place and we found some random place instead. As for the bar, it was random too and did the job. We even got to taste Pittsburgh’s famous Iron City beer. The next morning, we found out that the original jet that was planned was not available and the replacement wasn't as big. The people first in line that actually got seats (us) were holding tickets that just became worth more than their weight in gold. We traded out the flight for a different flight plan which resulted in free tickets to anywhere in the U.S. Now we get to take two more riders to Chicago for Criterium Nationals. By the way, I’m not going to stop racing all together, just reduce the amount of vacation days I use to travel to big pro stage races that just kick me around anyways. I'll use those days to enjoy other things in life. The other major stipulation is that I’m not going to be half as strict about life and training. I wouldn’t be surprised if it makes me a better racer and a better person in general. Anyways, I’m back in the Treasure Valley, or is that Tragic Valley now and the biggest race in Idaho is about to take place in downtown Boise on Saturday night. 13,000 fans and some of the best racers in the U.S. will be there to make it hurt. Pro men start at 8:30pm on Main St and go in squares for 90 minutes at break neck speeds. Soooooooooooooo much fun. Come on down and watch us mix it up!
See ya out there-
MW

2 comments:

Stu Cycling said...

Dude I have been a little busy the past few days.....NOT! well kinda only the blog world should know of this right now but I'm staying in Boise and not going back to Mesa! I like boise to much and figured I would move here soon anyways so here it is. I first have to get accepted at BSU, then things will start to happen

Matt Weyen said...

Score! And I'll be in town now too. I've got most of my stuff moved in with Buster now.

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