Thursday, January 31, 2008

Saddle up....

Well, I'm happy to anounce my first big event of the year, Queenslands Dusk to Dawn. This year it is presented by Ay Up lights, and once again at Kooralbyn, a venue I have really enjoyed racing at over the past couple of years. Such great memmories, like this one, coming third in both trackstanding comps, one at the 6 hour mark and the other at the 20 hour mark of the 2006 Marida 24hour. Must admit, the legs were a bit shaky for that one.

Heading out on lap 38 or was that 39?
And last year blasting out a 12 hour that felt like I was only on the bike for six or seven hour. Gotta love that.

I am super keen to see if my lack of riding of late will have a huge impact on how I race. At least when I do ride I am fresh. Maybe the recovery is what I have been searching for in the last couple of years of body abuse.

It's all about the bike....

Yesterday was my first courier day in about six weeks. It was pretty quite but that didn't bother me, I had a lot of people to catch up with. I also had a couple of maintainance jobs to do on my way in to work, combined with Fatties ride it was a full on day indeed.

It's all about the bike. Even Australia's largest recruitment company know it.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Mighty handy...

The Kona Ute sure is coming in handy. It's great to go to the shop see something you don't need, and buy it knowing you can lug it home on the back of your bike. It also turns a lot of heads.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Happy Aussie Day.

Today I needed to decide whether to do a road ride for fitness or a Randall MTB adventure in Melton. Wasn't that hard a decision really, the idea of looking for/making new trails to link existing trail to make a killer loop with two of my closest riding buddies wins every time. I'm a social rider who likes to race alone, if I do well in these races it's a bonus.

I left home at 7am but we didn't get riding till almost 9:30 because we needed to drop the Delica at a midway point so we could refuel, mmm coke and lamingtons. Aussie, Aussie Aussie.

Between us we had three GPS's and two types of maps to get to where we needed to go.

The rig for the day. My Hei Hei, now with FSA flat bars and white Ruffin grips for the shorter races. It got pretty steep, but we all know what goes up must come down, thank god for that.

Here Randall is showing us the track we need to link with.

We go to ride along a dried creek for a while, got pretty rocky after a while and forced us to higher ground. Ash shows us his style.
This is me laughing, we had to stop and do a fair bit of navigating. At one stage we had three compasses all reading different Norths. Gotta love technology.

Don't know how this old bute ute drove in, but I think I know why it didn't make it out.

A sign the locals posted.....Nice.

A quick buzz on the black stuff back to the Delica before we loaded up and drove to the starting point to grab the other cars. Time check, 4:30.

Did we link the trails? Yep

Did we walk a lot of climbs? Yep

Did we bomb the descents? Yep

Did we cover a huge amount of KM's? No, not really.

Do we care? No

A great way to have spent Australia Day.....sorry Rob.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Safety first you know....

Apparently I teach safe eating practices.

No legs....

Here's a quote from Andy Whites website

"Cycling is more mental than physical, so here's hoping a degree in couriering will enable us to tough it out, even when the legs will not."

I'm hoping that it is true. I am starting to feel very under done with the races I have coming up in the next month or so. With any luck when Jayden goes back to school next week I will be able to get some regular riding in place and start to make amends.

I have begun to pimp one of my race bikes so at least I look fast. I will post photos tomorrow if I get a chance to tinker in the shed tonight. Look fast, ride faster........I wish.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

EPIX.....Volume One.

The furthest thing from my mind when packing for the EPIX was using wet weather gear. But boy did it come in handy. I don't think it stopped raining for the entire 8 hour ride. This was not going to dampen our spirits as we headed off to ride some of the best trails Victoria has to offer. I won't go into detail on where we went, etc - I'll leave that to Ash on the new EPIX blog.

This is the riding group, Ash, Joel, Jason, Randall and myself, all nice and clean and not yet feeling the cold after a very wet night sleep at Sheepyard Flats camp area.
Less than 2km in and we all have very wet feet due to river crossings, we had 5 to do and the first four were all in the first 5kms. Yippee.
Some of the descents, although great fun, were difficult to control due to the presents of mud in our eyes. Sunnies were no help, you just had to hold on and hope for the best.
Randalls solution to "mud eye". A refreshing face wash.

And yes there was a fair bit of walking. But when you climb over 3000m in this area in the wet you have to expect it.
Ash having a little rest thanks to support vehicle driver Gez.

This was a most enjoyable day in the saddle, thank to the EPIX team and their partners for making it happen and all the best for future EPIX adventures.

Friday, January 18, 2008

EPIX...The Journey Begins.

This weekend sees me heading into the alpine region for the search for the ultimate single track. The brain child of Ash Thomas along with Jason Jackson, a few selected riders venture off into the not so well known riding areas looking for what we all dream about, the Ultimate single track. EPIX as they called it is being unveiled this weekend and Randall, Joel Read and myself are among the few heading off on its' Madden journey.

The Delica is all packed awaiting the arrival of Randall before heading to a camp ground in the Alpine area, then tomorrow is on, don't know how long we will be riding for, don't know who high we will climb, but rest assured we will be having a ball the whole way.

I don't know too much detail, you may be able to learn more here. But I'm sure I will have a bit to write about next week, so until then wish us luck in our quest.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


I see and use a whole lot of bike stuff. Some things I get excited about others not. This simple little pouch I picked up at Spoke(n) for $10 falls in the first category. I always have my music and mobile with me when riding and for years have been using those dicky zip lock bags to keep them dry. These Sugoi pouches are seam sealed and I don't understand why I haven't see anything like it in the past. A great little investment.

By the sounds of things up north, one or two of these would be real handy.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Load her up baby...

Those of you how know me, know I have no patience. Especially when it comes to new bikes. I picked the Kona Ute up today, and honestly I believe if you count the number of times rather than time spent on, this will be my most used bike in the fleet. The frame is so stiff you can hardly feel the weight of two kids on the bike at all. The trips to Coles will now use much less fuel, good for the budget, good for the environment! I grabbed an extra pair of pannier bags because two will go nowhere near fitting the $300 a week we spend on groceries. I will keep you informed of what I get up to with the Ute, won't be training or race orientated, but should be mildly entertaining.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Rolling on...

Today saw a few good mates out for a gentle roll around Lysterfied. Leaving from my place and spending 45 mins on bike paths getting there was not without amusement. We obviously don't "get" bike path uses. What they think is a close call we wouldn't even think twice about. Anyway, the two retired Felt Racing boys and I had a blast, enjoying each others company and pushing the limits of our fitness.

Jason and Ash, rolling home. These boys love mountain bike riding, so much so they have thought up an other avenue to expose it to the masses. They like to call in "Epix" and I think we will be hearing a lot more about it in the weeks/months ahead. I can tell you I will be involved in the first chapter due to be written next weekend around the beautiful trails of Mt Buller.

Me, showing off the new kit. My knee is still very sore from Wednesday night and not healing as I usually would. . Buy the end I was thinking it was a bad idea to have ridden and pushed it.

Jason should know better than to take a silly shot of himself when he borrows my camera.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Updated at last.

I have just added loads of cools stuff to my "for sale" blog.

I need to make room in the bike shed for the Ute.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Fun times...

It was a great welcome back ride last night with the Fatties. The pace was hot the dust was thick and just about everyone was there to test their fitness losses and gains from the Christmas period.
Randall showing off his new kit. It didn't look this shinny for long.

I was having a ball. Holding wheels and pushing both body and machine. Unfortunately I pushed to the point of no return as I attempted an overtaking move on James Dickey at 40km/h in westerfolds park. The sandy corner didn't agree with what I was attempting and after a long slide I was back up and riding in three seconds flat.

Even this journey on my butt couldn't dampen my mood. So much so I ended up accompanying Mr Ash Thomas home after he got a pit too excited and left all his energy on the trails leaving him with nothing to ride home with.
This was the outcome of my slid. The worse part is the corked calf. Oh well, hadn't planned another ride till Sunday anyway. Thank Ash for the top photo.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

A new chapter...

Welcome to 2008 on my blog. I can already tell you 2008 is going to be a huge year of change for my family and myself. Firstly with the imminent arrival of our third child (due Easter). The new addition will of course bring on more challenges in my role as a family man. I thought things were already tough with the two, but I have a feeling things will get much tougher. Not much I can do here but hold on and get taken on the biggest ride of my life.

The other big change is in my working life. As many are aware, we run our own businesses. My main role over the past 10 years or so has been as a push bike courier and in the last few year managing a fleet of riders and working on the roads myself has taken up much of my time and has also been the key ingredient to my training. I still am yet to figure out whether couriering has been good or bad as a MTB racer, but the one thing it definitely gave me was the ability to stay in the saddle for many hours on end in varying conditions. I started to wind down the time I spent as a courier towards the end of last year, only working a day or two a week for the last two months. With the new baby coming, Robyn will be staying at home whilst I head back out to earn the bread. My new role will mainly be managing property maintenance issues within my sister in law & Robyn's business called Boutique Stays. This role will involve office and on site work - a real change from what I have become use to.

The problem I now face with this role is when do I ride. Most riders find time outside of working hours to get enough riding in so I’m sure I can as well, but the 20-30 hours a week I have done in the past won't happen. So I will see how this reduced load effects my racing as the year progresses.

I think that’s enough typing. So here are some random pics to start the year off.

This may just be the next addition to the fleet.

I noticed this sign at the top of the decent down the on in twenty in the 'nongs. Reminded of the extreme single filing we have done at max heart rate down this hill in the past.

She sure rode the wheels off this one...

Jayden got this great jacket for Christmas off his Uncle Paul. Nice...

This is Paul Ryan. He has done a few solo 24’s and has come to me for some coaching to see how far he can go…