The Waffle House Chronicles...

Monday, November 21, 2005

Wi State Cyclocross Championships Race Report-
Location: Angell Park Speedway, Sun Prairie, WI
Date: November 20th
Weather: Overcast, 41F, 7-10mile winds

So I guess it has become tradition to do this race because it is the only cross race I’ve done the past two years. Brozek and I each told each other that we would be there…thus we were both committed. Which was confirmed when I saw him in the parking lot…crap I can’t back out now. But at least I would have someone to race with/against. I also saw Chuck in the parking lot and he said he was doing the same race I was. Crap. He is better at road biking than I am…he is better at mountain biking that I am…he has a USCF license…thus my championship dreams were already dashed.

But nevermind that, the only reason I race this race is to ride on the speedway. This is were some of my racing idols have raced and it is a thrill to be where they once were. Well they had to take the speedway out of the race this year because it was all mucked up. Bummer! Fortunately though registration is in the National Midget Car Racing Hall Of Fame. Inside I saw a plaque dedicated to Tony Stewart (who had a good Sunday) and finally my boy Jason Leffler. Even the Kasey Kahne Mountain Dew Machine outside of the HOF was pretty cool! But alas I was here to ride bikes…I signed up! Last year I put my team down as Racing with Jesus as I wasn’t on a USCF team. Of course the person couldn’t read my writing so in front of about 30 people he asked me to clarify my team name. Funny! This year I raced as part of Schwinn Regional team.

I pre-rode a couple laps, stripped off some clothes and rode one more. I tried to talk Chuck into starting in the front with me and finally he did. I didn’t really see Brozek before the start, I think he was near the rear. Anyways in true me fashion, I planned on leading out the race, trying to hold it to the first row of trees maybe 100 yards away. Well I didn’t click in as quick as I would’ve liked and started about 10th, passed a couple people and entered in 6th place. That is where I was exposed as a pretender and the backwards spiral began. I settled into a pack of about 10 riders about a half lap in and rode with them for a lap or so. The pack got smaller and smaller as some people rode ahead of us and a couple dropped off. Then it seemed like a faster rider would catch me about every half lap. I would ride with them until I was cooked, drop off and wait for the next one. Kind of how I used to run cross country that year in high school. By the last lap I realized 2 of my goals were going to come true, I wouldn’t get lapped and I would finish ahead of Brozek. The last lap was nice since I had a good 45 seconds to the riders in front of and behind me so my position was pretty much locked barring a debacle. I am not the state champion (I never thought I would be) and I didn’t even score any points for being in the Top 20. But I was out there, having a good time!

After the race I talked to Super Fan Jess! J She was hanging with other Super Fans Stephen and Emily, Shiroma (of Person of the Week fame) and Jill and Melissa. Not sure who won the other races but I heard Jordan took a big digger on the barrier section of the A race (still got a Top 10 or so though.) I know Garett and Jerry were going to race but I didn’t see them. Chuck was smirking with pride after the race. You see, the person leading after they cross the finish on the first lap got a free pint of Guiness beer…and Chuck did it! My co-worker Greg also raced but I barely saw him before during or after the race and I just know he finished somewhere between Chuck and myself.

For those of you that have no idea what the hell I am talking about, cyclocross is a form of bike racing. It is a criterium-style race with laps from 1-2k in length. They have barriers where you have to dismount and run and hurdle with your bike. They have hills that are so steep that you have to run/drag/trudge up them while carrying your bike. It is on varied terrain on grass, trails, through beer gardens wherever they can make it random and interesting. They make sure you ride the hills off-camber. They make sure to loop you through mud if they can find it. Yesterday we rode next to a race track, near a grave yard, through a picnic shelter, on several sidewalks, and everywhere in between. I guess yesterday was still a tad nice for cyclocross…the temperature was ok but from what I’ve been told there needed to be more rain/snow/sleet mix…maybe next year!

Other Race Reports:
Chuck He didn't even question the sexuality of his bike!
J.Bro I guess my rusted SPD's are better that his Ritcheys but I am pretty confident (I know) I would have beat him regardless of pedal issues...I was feeling pretty strong!

Photos to come soon!!!

Holy Weekend!

Talk about busy! Mostly good though. The low point was actually the beginning of the weekend. After work on Friday some of us went down to Big Ten Pub for some food before going to the UW/Michigan volleyball game. The food there was average (at best.) The worst part is when they were serving us they dropped a whole thing of ranch on Jess’ lap. It was all over her jeans and a little bit on her winter jacket. Not cool. On top of that they continued to charge us for extra ranch and we didn’t get a discount or anything. All we got was a half-assed apology and a bar rag to use. That is piss-poor service. I don’t think I’ll be going back…again the food was overrated and although there was always someone around to get you a drink the accuracy and quality of service was bad. Also was disappointed at the turn-out. Seems like Riz ended up sleeping in (and not bringing Kari) and Vale and Koebler were no call, no shows as well (both also were tired.) No worries though, we still had a solid group! And Wisconsin won 3 straight and kicked some Wolverine butt! It was a good time…one of those times that makes me wonder why I don’t go to more games!

Saturday was the usual…wake up and play basketball. Played for almost two hours and then I decided I needed to get a run in since I didn’t run on Friday and wasn’t going to run on Sunday. My goal was to do a marathon a week for the three weeks before the Berbee Derby. I was at 20 miles and saw the truck race was on Saturday morning (it was rained out on Friday.) I thought, I would just go home and watch this so I’ll see if I can run until it is done. The drove about 125 miles in the time it took me to run 6.3… Goal met. What should I do now? I went home, soaked in the hot tub and decided I needed to see the new Harry Potter so I drove down to Star, bought me a ticket and I was that weird guy by himself with the snuck-in soda and Sour Patch Kids. Anyways the movie was awesome. I wasn’t familiar with where the last movie left off but that didn’t matter at all. I just watched and enjoyed and tried to figure it all out. Each time I see one of these movies I become a bigger fan. Anyways I got home in time to watch the 2nd half of the OSU/Mich game and see Michigan blow it. Bummer but it helps the Badgers two-fold so no complaints there. I pissed away the rest of the afternoon not working on my road bike and then on to the Dodgeball tourney.

Dodgeball Tourney! We had to get there a good hour early because Jess was the captain and had to fill out paper work and go to a meeting and all that crap. We built up a formidable team of Pacific Cycle’s finest. We warmed up for game 1 with some hoops. Game 1. I look across and thing that the team we are playing is beatable. We won 2 of 3 from this team and then watched the other two teams would play, both of which looked beatable. Team 2 was Gasner’s team. He is an old friend of mine from the college days. Anyways, his team really brought it that game and we didn’t bring anything (especially me.) In one game I was eliminated 6 different times, only to be brought back in by my teammates catching balls. Anyways, one game it got down to one on one and the ref ruled our one player (Casey) crossed the center-line. What a crappy way to lose that game…we lost all 3. We had to wait another hour and a half for our last game but we already knew the best we could do was tie for the lead in our division and lose the tie breaker so that sucked. Vale, Koebs and I played 21 four times (3 wins by Koebs, 1 by me) and then we watched the game before us. Two girls playing were so drunk they could barely stand-up. Imagine drunk and slutty girls playing Dodgeball with lots of guys. Hilarious! On to our final games. If we swept these we would be second for sure so that’s cool. And that is what we did. We all started to gel, learned how to throw, learned some strategy and all that. This should bode well for the next tourney in two weeks! Only 1 team per division made the playoffs so we went home early.

Sunday was fun too! I entered the WI State Cyclocross Championships that morning (Race Report and photos to follow later today) and then tried the new Chipotle Steak Burrito at Taco Bell. My assessment? A decent menu item, albeit a little pricey, that with work could be awesome! My advice? The one I had was made inconsistently which is hard to recover from when grilled. Fortunately I started on the end with all the beans and ended with a delicious medley of sauce, steak and sour cream. My advice: Order one with no beans and ungrilled and order an extra side of the sauce. The sauce is basically the reincarnation of fajita sauce!!! Awesome! Order it on your seven layer burritos! The burrito itself is basically the grilled stuffed fajita from last year, take out the peppers and onions and add beans. $2.99 is steep but if you use caution and order some value menu with it, you can still escape for around 6 bucks. After the Taco Bell we headed to Johnson Creek (I needed Basketball shoes and Jess’ was jonesin’ for a little shopping.) I bought a bunch of stuff for running, for looking good and the basketball shoes I needed. We came home to watch the last Nascar race (Congrats T.Stew and Biff) and the awesome Colts game! A little Chilis in the late evening with the Smulkas, a little Family Guy after that a little organizing and into bed I thought to myself…what a long, full and fun weekend!
This whole week should be busy as well! The Russ going away party is on Wednesday…if you need info let me know… I wonder what Riz is doing right now?