Thursday, December 20, 2007


Colin has done it all, yesterday he did a 2 hour ski up at the CB Nordic center. He took in the views, and watched through his little window as I charged the hills. I could almost hear the 3 month old say, "faster papa" on the descents. He loved it. We took in part of the Jeep King of the Mountain in TRide, watching Palmer take on all comers. I used to live for riding sideways and going big, today I think I will tele.

Pics of next season are in my mind, lacing up black carbon beauties on fresh KING hubs, DT spokes tie them together. Visions of bar-to-bar single geared action float above in my sleep. Training is in full effect. A new friend has let themselves be know, another single track mind just 10k from where we will be in a weeek or so, they are still riding there.

Looking for gravities gentle tug, like a form of affection or validation, enjoying the last few days of winter here in CO.


Saturday, December 15, 2007


My dad told me never to bet on something that wasn't a sure thing. With that advice in hand, I would not lay down any bets on the two Elite CX titles up for grabs. This especially so on the men's side where it is anyone's title. Jonathan Page's lack luster season has to have the experts second guessing which Page will show up in Kansas. Trebon has shown some great speed this season, but also has had some bad races, KC may prove to be too technical for TreeFarm. Johnson and Powers have had some strong surprise rides, with Johnson showing he can beat the best regardless of the conditions or course. This could be his year to add another National title to match his Junior title, again taking one away from Page. Powers is the future of racing, but needs to back up his USGP win to take things to the next step, KC could be that race. Others wild cards include Wicks and Wells, both have won this season, and could easily play the spoiler.

In the women's field, it is a two horse race between Compton and Gould. Most would write off Gould with Compton a shoe-in, but Gould has built her speed and power over the season. Compton is the only US rider to have won a World Cup, but Gould is the only US rider to have beaten Compton (twice).

I am not placing bets, but I will go out on limb with some predictions:


1) Johnson
2) Trebon
3) Page


1) Gould
2) Compton

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Independent Fabrication SSX

Independent Fabrication SSX

Having been a "Steel is Real" guy for most of my mountain biking life, in the last few years I found myself gravitating towards the lust of Ti bikes, in fact prior to getting the SSX, all of my bikes were no longer steel. After being more involved with IF, I was persuaded to test the SSX (Stainless Steel Cross) and I was excited at the prospect of getting back on a steel bike.

The Tubing: Before Reynolds came out with the new 953, Columbus back in the day also had a stainless steel offering. The Columbus tubing that was flimsy, brittle and small diameter tubing with only Rygin Cycles playing around with it, and from my understanding, none of those bikes exist today This new stainless steel tubing from Reynolds is sexy and cutting edge with its large diameter tubes that are paper thin and glimmer in the light with slight gray tint. It is funny because I get asked all the time if it is Ti. The standard 853 steel tubeset has wall thicknesses in the realm of .08 and .05, 953 is .05 and .03, basically stack like four sheets of copy paper and you will have it. Another benefit of 953 is its tensile strength, 3 times of that of Ti! It is as difficult to work with, even more so to weld than Ti due to the thin walls, and hardness of the metal, but how does it ride...

The Ride: During my transition I had the opportunity to own two identical hardtails, one was ti and the other steel. I could tell the differences and felt like the steel was a bit too harsh, which lead me to a full Ti quiver. Once again, I had two identical 'cross bikes, one Ti one 953, but this was not your average steel. The SSX was up to providing a similar if not superior ride quality to the Ti bike, but with added BB stiffness and a feel of transmitting power right donw to the ground. After pounding out several singletrack rides and laps on 'cross courses, I found myself loving the feel. The ride quality fell somewhere between steel and Ti, but better than both. Snappy, quick and supple were words the churned in my head as the wheels went around.

Light, Sexy and a Great Ride.

So would I convert? Absolutely. Reynolds 953 maybe the most cutting edge frame material out there in an unlikely package. Steel bikes have gone to pasture in the mainstream as Carbon and other exotics have taken center stage. But make no mistake, 953 is as exotic as anything out there, and just as beautiful. Weight? 3.45lbs for my 56 frame (my Ti weight in as 3.3 lbs), and there is room for lighter weight frames as the tubing gets dialed in.

Riders looking for an alternative to the sterile carbon-mass marketed deigns with little to no ride quality need not look any further. Indy will be offering a full line of 953 bikes (already with SSR road and SSX 'cross) with the soon to be released mtn version. These make for great Gucci/ head-turning rides that back up the hype, and offer real world riding benefits. I am working on the converting my quiver over to 953, Steel IS Real baby!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Training Partner

Actung! Baby on Board!

The weather Gods have blessed us w/ an extended riding season, hell, I might make it out again today. But they seem to have forgotten that we like snow as well. If it were not for a small little patch up on Lily Lakes, we would have ridden bikes again yesterday, but we made it out for our first (actually my second) nordic outing. In doing so, we have utilized all of the kits we purchased for the Chariot (a night run in the falling snow on Friday put the jogger through the paces). By far the biggest training benefit has been the bike version, add 30lbs and a parachute to your rear end and you will get my drift.

The ski has been the most fun thus far. It actually makes you feel more stable on skis, and it glides great. My training partner Colin, now 11 weeks old takes everything in stride, mostly he just sleeps through it all. But once and a while he is alert and like a sponge takes it all in. We are looking forward to skiing with him in Europe on the myriad of XC trails that network small picturesque villages, most of which have a lot of snow already.

Team Bloomer

Colin also has been to 7 races so far, yes I know, people think we are pigeon-holing him into being a cyclist, and I am sure it will have an influence on him. However, I secretly want him to be a really good fussball (that's soccer to you Amerikaner). In fact I am going to take a camp myself to be able to play with him, right now I am pathetic at best.

Friday, November 23, 2007

On the slide

I thought it smelled like snow last night, sure enough we have a dusting this morning. I hope we get enough up high so they can set some nordic trails on Lily Lakes for the CB Nordic Thanksgiving camps...

Adam, meet Mr. Top Tube, Top Tube meet Adam.

I pulled these pics off the net, perfect example of how things can go wrong even for the best. Busted out the single speed for another great late season ride in Hartman's. I didn't look at the temperature when I left, but I am thinking in the low teens. Still, it felt great to get out and earn my Thanksgiving dinner, which was pretty good I must say.

I think it is down here somewhere...

Work is focused on Germany, get everything set for the big move, and IF/ Edge launched, I am very excited. Already looking and booking our event plans over there.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Riding On Borrowed Time

Cranking out a ride up Prince Creek. Carbondale, CO

I should be skiing by now, but the riding has been great. I have logged more miles in the past few weeks than most of this season. Trying to ride the ‘Greatest Hits’, Fruita, Eagle, Carbondale, TRide and CB. A few weeks back I hit a new trail near TRide, courtesy of one Mr Micheal Guskea. Sweet, tight, wet in the trees riding that I love so much. The trail was still soft from being so new, but was pretty freakin good none the less.

18 road was an adventure, at dusk on my cross bike. I basically descended the trail coming down through the campground by feel, and when I reached the car, I couldn’t see the door handle. Up Prince Creek has been beautiful with the change in season, riding under the canopy of the Scruboaks. That place is going to explode!

One last ride in Eagle this week, I was working over the Bone Yard, when on my second descent, I crossed Charlie Brown’s (Mt Pedaler – the Peanuts) path. I rode back to the top with him, and had a great discussion about 29’s, suspension, and trends in the industry. It should be known, I don’t like 29’ers, and yes I have tried them – but I also don’t care for dualiies either. What stuck with me on this discussion, was how much front suspension. Mike Skellion has been riding a Roark Ti hardtail bike with 120 (Charlie was on his Kona single unit with a Maverick fork on the front – 6inches). Where is the point of diminishing return for a hardtail? How much is too much?

I have ratcheted up my front end in smaller increments, Mag 21 (50mm), Judy (60), White Bros (70), SID (80), FOX (80 & now 90). I truly believe you have to look at a few factors when determining travel on a hardtail. Quality of suspension, style and type of riding, frame type and wheel setup.

This discussion begins and ends with FOX, having ridden most other forks, FOX is where it is at, period. As a racer who likes to descend, I have really grown to like the 90mm, but I am considering going to 100, but maybe to 110… Efficiency, sluggishness, and weight all are things to consider, ultimately, I will go with what IF suggests based on my goals for this bike…stay tuned. The bike will be a 953 hardtail, smooth, compliant, light bike, that is still rigid laterally, and quick. Tires a huge part of suspension choice since one can tune so much in the tires. Being that I run a softer setup (25 – 28psi), I don’t feel the need for more travel. The flip side is with a little more up front, I can have better handling via more grip from the suspension.

There will be some more new products on this bike, and I will be playing around with the single speed as well – can’t wait to crack that badboy open on some Euro’s!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

flogging it...

Me Flogging it like a Rented Mule

Boulder was on the docket for the weekend with 2 UCI events and our last chance to spread the word on our UCI MountaineerCross this coming weekend. Not too mention shopping for the baby (he scored) and ourselves - Gunnison does not lend itself to shopping, and there is no Whole Foods. And Sunday I jumped out there with the 35+ for my first and only CX race of the season.

Once again DBCEvents and Chris Grelish put on a hell of a weekend of racing in Boulder, continuing his vision of holding premier cross events. If you haven't, thank this man for his hard work - and believe me it is hard. Boulder Res served up day one, and shortly after posting our bills for our event, it was off shopping. Besides many thing for Colin, I bought my first pair of Organic Jeans at REI, something I have sworn I will only do in the future - buy consciously sustainable and ethically produced consumer goods.

Afterwards, I pulled some laps in a park in LoDo to prep myself - I certainly haven't ridden at all - for a puke fest the next day at the Boulder Cup. Reverting back to Standard Time not only gave us an extra hour of sleep, but made life much easier getting out to the venue. Sandi went for a spin on my new SSX prior to the my race, while Colin and I posted some more bills for MountaineerCross.

After catching up with a few old friends, I suited up, MIB style so as not to draw any attention to myself, it didn't work for Vino or Rasmussen, but it seemed I was under the radar. I started dead last, I mean dead last, which was fine because I felt my race was a crap shoot. The top 10 in 35+ are freaking fast, and with no training this fall, I wasn't going to get myself into dicing it up with those guys. After a five sec delay from hearing the start, we got rolling. I pick and chose some lines through the back of the pack, slowly working my way up through the field. While I had no speed on the flats, I was actually dropping or picking up guys on the climbs and sandtraps (I rode all of them except on the first two laps in heavy trafic). Anither thing I noticed was the lack of handling skills in the back half of the field, guys would blow it on corners, and pick poor lines, and I was the only one where I was riding cleaning the sandtraps. I saw the leaders on occassion, opposite of me on other sectors, but I kept "Flogging it like a Rented Mule" as Dave Thile would say. A couple last lap surges put me into the top half of the field, where exactly doesn't matter. It was fun. It was fun because unlike in years past, I had no expectations, and was doing it for the joy and pleasure. Also a reminder for what I want to accomplish in the future in my racing while keeping grounded on what is really important.

Afterwards, I threw Colin in the BabyBorn for a mid-afternoon dinner at Whole Foods with Sandi, and it was great to see him looking around and absorbing it in. I enjoyed being close to him and looking at things through his eyes. And the smiles he put on others faces was priceless. I look forward to many more experiences like this with him, and getting to relive childhood through another person.

If you haven't thought about it, think, no, make plans to come up to our race this weekend, the MountaineerCross. Beers and Wine at number pick-up Friday evening at the Brick Cellar winebar, great racing all day Saturday with some big names from this weekend and top ACA races. Killer prizes and the fun will continue the next day in Durango at the SqwakerCross.

SSX 953 Stainless Steel IF

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Nijs, Very Nijs

Nijs and Stybar showing how it is done over the barriers.

All is right in the world, 'Cross is in full swing and Nijs is back on top. There is more smack talking going on prior to a World Cup CX event than prior to any of Foreman and Ali's meetings. But winning is the best deoderant and Nijs came out smelling like roses.

It is only a matter of time before UCI totally eliminates barries like in Tabor, for the 'disadvantage' it puts riders who cannot bunny-hop them. I say get some riding skills or have the fastest dismount-run-remount out there. If anything, I say make the course more technical, balance out the physical with the technical. But I am sure we will hear some more whining from Wellens on this topic...

Wellens and Fidea better get used to this view for 2008.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Sprechen sie Deutsch?

Well, it is official. Sandi, Colin & I will be taking up residence in Germany as of 12/28/07. We are very excited, especially since we will be working with Independent Fabrication as the distributor for Germany (and surrounding countries), along with soon to be named companies. We will be back to racing over there while building the brand, getting reacquainted with some old friends and riding spots.

We are sad however to be leaving such a great community here in Gunnison and the cycling one we have come to know through racing. Hope to see most of you at our last race, MountaineerCross, and thanks for the good times over the years.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Western Slope Cyclocross Series Wraps up in Eagle

SM 3's winner on the weekend, Tom Hopper of

Mafia Racing Jake Wells dominates weekend as series champions are crowned

The 2007 Western Slope Cyclocross Series was a diverse series in courses and conditions, and the series final in Eagle, Colorado was no different with Indian Summer conditions on Saturday and 6 inches of snow and full winter conditions on Sunday. Locals and riders in pursuit of series standings filled out the classes, putting on a great show of racing and fun.

“This series was more than what we expected,” claims series organizer Ken Bloomer, “We wanted to bring cyclocross to some new venues on the Western Slope (Colorado), and what we got in return was a great series with excellent venues and a strong following.”

The EagleCross took place on the Eagle County Fairgrounds and was organized by local bikeshop Mountain Pedaler owner, Charlie Brown. A combination of grassy fields, dirt paths, pave and some unique barriers (logs & ditches) made up the two courses on Saturday and Sunday, with snow as an added obstacle for all on Sunday. Bar to bar racing could be found in each category with Tom Hopper ( dethroning the strangle hold of the Mullervy twins (Clif Bar Development Team), Kevin and Conor, at the front of the SM3 field. Hopper took wins on both days, while Kevin wrapped up the series title for the 3’s, racking up more total points for the series than any one else in any category. Brother Conor was 2nd in the series.

Conor & Kevin Mullervy

Tom Hayles continued his winning ways from Aspen in Eagle after a rough weekend in Gunnison that included a broken bike, rebounding ands taking 2nd and 1st on the weekend, sealing his series title. ZG teammate Thomas Usek nabbed the win from Hayles hands on day one, but found the snow on Sunday more difficult, leaving Hayles alone to solo in for the win.

Sandra Hyra pulled the double win on the weekend over fellow Squadra Velocita rider Annie Deprey, for a one-two in the series as well. Hyra rode solo both days at the front, while Annie was challenged in the early going both days, but pulled away from third place Megan Myrick.

Jake Wells (Mafia Racing) gave a cross clinic, showing why he is the real deal and a threat at any cross event. Day one saw Wells launch a vicious attack from the gun, dropping the likes of National Mountain Bike Champion Jay Henry (Tokyo Joes), along with Mike Jannel (Tokyo Joes) and Glen Wright (Moots). Wells was the only rider to consistently bunny-hop the ditches, and doing so smoothly easily gaining a few seconds each lap with his riding skills. Henry tried to counter about 2/3’s into the race, and while he cut slightly into the gap, he had to eventually concede the win by nearly half a minute at the line. Wells continued his winning ways with his blinding speed and riding skills on Sunday despite the adverse conditions, leaving only two others on the lead lap on day two. Joel Mischke (Basalt Bike and Ski) took the series finishing 6th and 3rd on the weekend.

Racers and spectators alike had much praise for the 2007 WSCXS, taking in some great venues in Aspen, Gunnison and Eagle. Courses and weather offered many challenges to the riders, and much fun was had by all. Many of these riders are looking forward to the upcoming UCI MountaineerCross, November 10 in Gunnison, and to the promise of more events in 2008 on the Western Slope.

2007 Series Champions

Juniors – Ryan Lake, Two Rivers Cycling

SM 35+ 4 – Brian Schaefer, Basalt Bike & Ski

SM 4 – JP Hutchens, Basalt Bike & Ski

SM 45+ - Chris Canfield

SM 55+ - (tie) Eric Nordsen, Blue Bicycles & Jacques Houot

SM 3 – Kevin Mullervy, ClifBar Development Team

SM 35+ - Thomas Hayles, Team ZG

SW Open – Sandra Hyra, Squadra Velocita

SM Open – Joel Mischke, Basalt Bike & Ski

Thank you to the series sponsors: Two Leaves and a Bud Tea Company, Wells Fargo, Chris King, Independent Fabrication, timbuk2, Kent Eriksen Cycles, DT Swiss, Voler Team Apparel, Crested Butte Mountain Resort, Clif Bar, Thomson, Kona, Cravens Coffee, Aspen Rec Center, Basalt Bike & Ski, Mountain Pedaler,, Crank Brothers, Paul Components, Shimano, The Alpineer, Monarch Ski Area, Dos Gringos Burritos

Thursday, October 18, 2007


Flash of Fall Colors in Carbondale

Racing seems so distant, and yet a big part of my life. Since Colin (& actually long before) racing as a participant has taken a back seat to other activities. WSCXS & GunniCross has been a great comfort, seeing others dice it up on courses that I have designed brought me a vicarious pleasure. It is not that I am not riding, it is just once it comes to maintaining a regular schedule and actually racing myself, it hasn't happened.

Snow in the High Country has me thinking nordic already, and then pending 2008 season, comeback.

Monday, October 08, 2007

sustainable cycling

Beautiful, functional, the last hub you will ever buy. Chris King SS Disc.
Sometime my mind races more than I do on my rides, contemplation of life, sport and a wide array of topics roll through my head like the revolution of my wheels. I thought about bike/ component companies and their role in manufacturing/ production vs. affordable-quality products.

I'm a whore when it comes to tech and bike gear, but I like to think one a with some virtue. For instance, I ride for KING, something I am very proud of for 1) the quality of product they put out - second to none, 2) their social awareness (sustainable manufacturing, made in USA, support of bicycle advocacy - the company as a whole). I have a 17t & 18t that I have raced on since 2001, both are in great shape, and there is no reason for changing them - just to get something new. My headsets and hubs all have several thousand miles on them, and look as nice as the day I put them on my bike.

Independent, they have built me some sweet bikes, and while I have recently added a couple to my quiver, my single speed has 3 season and no signs of retiring. Unless I am testing new products for them, my quiver will likely look the same in 10 years.

I have toyed around with the idea of springing into the componentry business myself, racer driven components, built by hand or least by a skilled local tech, using sustainable practices & designs. I wonder if there is a demand for that? Will consumers pay more for something that is not only a great design, but has a larger social component to it? KING thinks so.

It has come to my attention that a couple component manufactures are going abroad to save some money in manufacturing costs. This doesn't sit well with me because it will take more resources to ship these items back over here, and someone will be losing a job. I say create a better product, something that is better than the rest, will last longer, and has added social value. We as consumers have the responsibility to patron companies that will fill our need as enthusiasts and ensure that we will have a future in riding by protecting the resources at hand.

Monday, October 01, 2007


World Champ Julien Absalon with the Hutchinson crew including Marc Gullikson (right)

My trip to Vegas was what it needed to be, short. Despite my disappointment in the show, which I felt was well overrated and lacked any appeal, business there was good for me. Being part of the Hutchinson Test Tribe, it was great to spend some time with Marc and others from Hutchinson at their booth. I am excited at racing on the new Tubeless Ready Bulldog's, finally a real answer for tubulars. Marc, experienced cross veteran and Marketing Guru at Hutchinson, has been a champion for this product development. It has the makings of a real revolution in the sport of cross, and makes a lot of sense to me. I have been running Tubeless Ready on stock rims for mtb for some time with zero issues, I expect the same for cross. Plus, with clincher carbons like that of the new DT Swiss road wheels coming in at around 1200g's for the set, and tires at around 350g's, weight is not an issue. Not too mention the even lower pressures one can run with tubeless and even better flat protection.

Julien says he will finish out his season with a MegaAvalanche (think really big Super-D) that his brother has won for the last couple of years and some cyclocross. He equated the Beijing Olympic course to a cyclocross course, while physically demanding, lacked any technical riding skills. Maybe we will see a Sven Nijs afterall...

My new race steed on display at Reynolds UK booth

I also got to hang with Matty B and Joe from IF at the show, who were proudly displaying their first 953 stainless cross bike, which also happened to be my new bike. Be looking for a test ride in the MountainFlyer soon. While Indy was absent with an official booth, they had a couple of bikes sprinkled through the show. IF will be in full force at NAHBS show in Portland.

CrossVegas was pretty sick to see first hand, hats off to Chris and Brooke for their efforts in producing a top notch event. The venue was great and the racing even better. I was kind of glad my sense of direction failed me in my efforts to join the the race - I went south looking for the race instead of west...

No sooner after the races ended, I found myself back in Colorado by day break, and not a moment too soon. Vegas is a land that perplexes me, a city built on greed and consumption beyond my comprehension. Why would we place a tradeshow for an industry that should promote healthy, active outdoor lifestyles in a city that promotes just the opposite? Next year I will be at EuroBike, once again in a different capacity...

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Here's a little something I think y'all are really gonna like....

"If steel were discovered tomorrow, it would be the new wonder material." - Keith Bontrager


The future is bright.
It is like I awoke form a 9-month nap and now I am in hyperdrive. Colin Joel Blomer is to save my soul, my little bear. 7lbs 13oz, which since he is feeding so well (does he know something about the coming winter I don't?) he has blown past his birth wieght. Training, work and life has become much more complex, yet rewarding.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007


Harlan Price

I take issue with Floyd Landis showing up to races these days, regardless of his innocence or lack there of, it is inappropriate. Bound by legal ties that bind, he has found a way a marring the accomplishments of true avid cyclists (although they - Dave Wiens, Harlan Price and Chris Etough - have been sticking it to him). Save the circus for his court room plights, and keep good, fun and honest racing out of his web of lies. Faia wrote Floyd won the Tour, comparing that to this years TDF and its scandle, along with how Faia is glad to see Floyd return to his roots. But Faia didn't look out for the rest of cycling, especially that of endurance racing where more times than not it is hard working athletes making big sacrifices for the passion to the sport. If Floyd were true to this passion, his sacrifice would be his absence until his sentence is served.

Monday, September 03, 2007


Pimping my ride

In the spirit of the season (cross that is) and to try somehting new, I have converted my Ti Deluxe to a 1x9. By removing the stock XTR rings and front der/ XTR STi shifters, then bolting on a MRP carbon guard w/ a 32t middle ring, and mounting a 3rd Eye to the inside (I would eventually like to add another inner guard), the drivetrain conversion was quick. What slowed the process down was mounting an XTR hydro lever that needed bleeding. Had I opted for the separate triggers and levers to begin with, the process would have been much faster. However, I like the performance out of the XTR STI shifters.

As a devoted single speeder, I fell for this new system within the first ride. I should mention I also dropped my bar ends, threw some lighter wheels and tires- the new Hutchinson TubelessReady Pythons, all together made for a snappier, faster and efficient ride. Today I hit Hartman Rocks aboard the freshened ride, and it was a blast. This setup rides similar to a single speed, feeling more free, lighter and efficient, but with the mechanical advantage of a multi-geared bike.

simple, clean drivetrain

The new tires, which I have been involved with the development for a couple of seasons were incredible. Predictable cornering, confident purchase and subtle smooth ride, everything one could ask from a tire, all in spades.

I don't get it why Shimano doesn't embrace 2x9 as a drivetrain for serious racers and riders. We all do not need a granny, and we would not have to pay for redundent gearing in weight. Another idea I am working on is converting some hydro XTR levers to be compatible on road bars. We are looking and molds for the hoods, and means to route the cables. This will be a winter project for sure, stay tuned.

Saturday, September 01, 2007


my coach racing last year

Long time ago, when I was just getting hardcore into snowboarding back in the midwest, someone once said to me, "It is good to keep your hobbies and passions separate from your spouse, that you should have different interests." Meaning this guy liked to get away from his wife and hang with the 'bros'. We on the other hand (Sandi & I) have always enjoyed sharing our passions for the outdoors, adventure sports and more so, cycling.

Sandi was a top 800m runner in Germany when we met, and actually our first date was a mountain bike ride. Since then, we have progressed in cycling together, and all along Sandi has been my un-official coach. She would layout my training weeks for me and has been good for feedback on how I am feeling and progressing. She does a lot of studying and knows not only a lot about training methods and physiology, but also nutrition and holistic healing practices.

Today she was a great coach once again, after a fast warm-up lap and 4 race=pace laps, I was ready to pack it in, but she insisted I pull one more lap, having cheered me on each lap, shadowing me around the Western State campus course. With her motivation behind me, I not only pulled one more lap, but my strongest and fastest, despite a late accident that tore my knee open.

Thanks Sandi.

Total AVG 142 1hr 42 min

lap 1: 8:14 MAX180 AVG 167
lap 2: 7:30 (short course) MAX182 AVG171
lap 3: 7:56 MAX182 AVG 169
lap 4: 7:51 MAX182 AVG 170
lap 5: 7:43 MAX178 AVG 171

note: this is on the same course (with the exception of lap 2) that will be used for both the ACA Oct 13 and UCI Nov 10 races.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Wanted: Lifetime Partner

Sexy young firey single seeks equally ambitious mate for adventurous lifestyle

I love my bikes. Each one has been built with a purpose, and they perform perfectly. That is why I cannot believe I am selling one of my friends. I listed it today on EBay, and it saddens my deeply to see this one go. But something has to give, it is either it or my wife... With a new arrival on the way (bike that is), room has to be made. So with a saddened heart, we are about to part ways. If youknow a good home for her, go to EBay, and show your love.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


Get the 411 on the new cyclocross series on the western slope. Six races, 3 race weekends, lots of fun. Our GunniCross will be one of the venues, did my Wednesday morning Worlds workout on the campus course, felt great, but got some funny looks from students in between their classes. Tried to drag Dave Wiens out, but he was working on his 'Honey-Do' list. Sounds like Dave is planning some 'cross racing this fall.

Sandi's blingle speed is all set, ready for action - be looking for pics soon, also on the webpage.

They are bending my stays as I write this, the 953 project is rolling along, can't wait for this bike.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

New Hutchinson Bulldogs

Hutchinson Bulldog 34c cross tire

I have been riding these new Hutchinson Bulldog cross tires for a couple of weeks now, and as a guy who loves his tubulars, I have to say that these are great tires, even though they are clinchers. Mounted up on a set of the beautiful white DT Swiss RR 1450 Mon Chasseral wheels, DT's 'light' climbing wheels, this setup was very light, and fast. I ran just under 40psi in both front and rear.

As mentioned, I love the ride of tubulars, and have ridden my wife's setup on occassion, Ksyrium SL's with Kenda Small Block 32c tires - which I dislike as much as long visits from in-laws. Her setup is harsh, the wheels are too flexy and unpredictable in corners, and sketchy all around. My preferred setup are my Reynolds Cross carbon tubulars w/ Dugast 34c Rhinos, which I run around 32-35psi in. So going to an all aluminum wheel w/ a clincher, admittingly I was skeptical.

To my surprise, my first ride out, I warmed up quickly to this new setup. The wheels proved to be stiff laterally for great cornering, but supple enough to smooth out the ride. The 34c Hutchinson Bulldogs complimented the wheels, with predictable grip in various conditions, supple ride, not too mention a cool Euro appeal in their silver/ black skin, pairing nicely with the white scheme of the wheels.

After hitting the Lower Loop trail up in Crested Butte on my Indy Fab Planet Cross, I found this setup to be much more. The wheels hooked up nicely on loose climbs and descents, and were a blast to ride through the corners. I never felt like I was over-riding the wheels, and even ran down a couple of mountain bikers.

Perfect pairing

Back on the campus cross course, perfectly timed sprinkler systems afforded me the opportunity to turn some wet laps on the grassy lawns. Off-camber, downhill and tight turns were no match for these tires and wheels. I pushed hard through the turns, and lept out of the saddle on the steep inclines with not a hint of any slipping. Even on very slick corners these tires grabbed like velcro.

So would I race this setup? Absolutely. The Hutchinson Bulldogs paired up with the DT Swiss Mon Chasseral's provide a inspiring package that would benefit any cross rider. These will be seeing much more action this season, including some races.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Brewing the midnight oil

my home for the 24hours in the sage

I spent the weekend brewing up coffee and espresso for my fellow riders during the 24hours in the sage in Gunnison. From early afternoon 'til 1am and then 4am until the finish, I kept those turning laps well caffeinated, some of whom came back w/ high fives for turning their fastest laps on my juice. It was cool to be on the sidelines for this one, but couldn't help thinking Sandi & I were giving up our Single Speed titles, as Eldora was also going one. It was cool to see Mark Compton taking the men's title while a timeless Charlie Hayes was 2nd. The womens field looked very racey as well with Judy Freeman among others our there.

Hope the heat dissipates soon, and we get some more monsoon moisture, maybe a delivery from Dean??? Colors are starting show in spots on the hillsides, signs of things to come...

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

the build up...

Piss Off #36, Owner: Erik Lindner,Bavaria, Germany - a Ferrari in the driveway could not be any sexier.

The build up for the CX season is long been under way. The buzz is rampant in the blogosphere, mags, shops. It is palletable. Today will serve up 2x 20min at full throttle out Goldbasin Road on the cross bike. I love cross workouts, more than any other. Just turning laps on a cross course is a joy.

Squadra is printing up my new IF kit - just for me. It will debut at CrossVegas on my new 953 cross bike, also a one-off. Slowly getting my build dialed in as well.

Trying to pull everything together for out CX events, a lot in the works! Can't wait to get a chance to throw down in Belgium this season, having raced there before (Houffalize MTB World Cup), I look forward to being back there in the thick of the action.

Saw some leaves changing on my drives this week, just hints of the coming season... also I have noticed many cyclo-tourists out on the roads this summer - more than any other.

Monday, August 13, 2007

time for a change

riding the UpperLop in CB

Saturday was spent revising our two 'cross courses in anticipation of our ACA double points weekend (October 13 & 14) and the UCI C2 (November 10). Kelly Hall is getting a remodel, forcing us to make some changes to our campus course, but change is good. I turned several laps on the latest version, and feel that the course is even better, more turns and elevation change. The grass is already getting faster, and made for 7 - 8 min laps (4-6min last year). The course across the street will feature a new section, adding time and a bigger run-up onto the course. Clean this section and se your gaps open up.

Spent the rest of the weekend pedaling the mtb, following Frischy's lead, I lay down around 3 hrs of followup to saturday's efforts out in Hartmans - definetly can sense a change in the air.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007


I am not much of a roadie, I like to feel dirt under my wheels. So today for my tempo 'road' ride, the bike path from Carbondale to Basalt lead me to West Sopris road, and eventually a nice dirt climb. Sweating under the return of the summer sun, I climbed, continuing my game of catchup in prep for the 'cross season. No weight training (just started), no big races in my legs, just the desire and fire inside to be fast come the meaty part of the season.

My reward for my efforts, besides some good feeling pain, was some sweet singletrack going down Prince Creek, a ribbon of twisting and turning singletrack. Sorry no pics, I was having too good of a time to stop for a photo op of my bike (or tagging links of my bike and sponsors like a NASCAR driver - leave that for when you are on the podium at a big race - not a town series). However, I will say riding a cross bike on singletrack is one of my more favorite things to part-take in, not too mention the skills gained in this endeavor. Down in the drops you can get flying, and once you have the rhythm, you can really haul the mail - and Greg, I did not roll any tires.

The road descent from the bottom of the singletrack is so fast, I dropped a car going back into Carbondale.

Jonathan Page will be joining us for our Koppenberg Cross Week in Belgium for two days of riding and dinner. We will pre-ride Koppenberg with Page the day before the race and have dinner that night, and will also ride with him the following Friday. The trip is from October 28 - November 4, and costs $2500 not including airfare, but most everything else! It will surely be a great time. for all of the details.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

cycle of things

I wish 'cross season followed nordic season. when I come off the skis, my fitness is there, and I can just hammer. with the lack of many races on the mtb this season, I am playing catch up, building towards 'cross season. I would be so much easier hoping on the bike after snow season. It should from winter to fall, and fall to winter, no wait. Spring is pretty good too. I love the cool, yet warming spring riding, thos first few times out on the bike, heading to Fruita for the warmer riding weather (it is frigging cold in Gunnison in the dead of winter). The buzz of seeing 40 - 50 degree days down there. OK. It should go spring, fall and then winter, and keep cycling this way. Summer sucks.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Now that is PRO

I'm going to show her my 'Oh Face', OH...OH...OH...

Not being an Olympic sport, there are some serious resources going into winning 'crpss races. I guess it comes down to popularity and selling bikes. Is a gold medal worth more than a Tour win, or a Classics win???

Good day in the saddle, as it was perfect riding weather, gloomy, cool and sometimes wet. Slowly building for cross...

Saturday, August 04, 2007

The Small Guys

Spending my day canvasing the shops around Denver/Boulder, it was great to see so many small shops thriving. Props to many of these forgoing the big brands and supporting smaller companies and framebuilders.

Growing up in Burlington, Iowa, we had a great scene. My first intro to cycling was actually cyclocross, when I was about five. I remember going out on a cold day, my father was interested to see this bike race that he had heard about, and we watched men on road bikes turn laps around Perkins park. I remember the mud, and the hills they had to ride up and down. I don't recall getting hooked on biking that day, but the memories last, which may mean something...

We had The Cyclery, and shop run by Tom Clayton. His daughter was a good rider on the track, and he supported many of the local roadies. Peugot, Redding, Rosa were some of the bikes he carried and I scored my first pair of shoes and helmet from him, out of a pile of old gear he had in back. I remember that the helmet, which was leather had a musty scent, almost moldy and the buckle was rusted. I didn't care, in fact I was so stoked to put it on and ride those shoes, I think the laces snapped the first time I laced them up.

The Cyclery is no longer, and besides the annual Snake Alley Criterium, Burlington's bike scene has seen better days. Maybe what they need is a good old fashioned cyclocross race to get the next generation hooked.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

AVG 172

172. That was my average for an 1hr 45 min ride last night. Went on the group ride for some good road mileage to pile onto my 'cross training regiment. Broke out my 1x1 IF cross bike, 44x17. Between headwinds, undulations in the road, and some overzealous counterparts, I had it pegged. It felt great, and I know if I keep that up, come the bell lap, it will come in handy - the chaser becomes the chased.

September 26, VegasCross
September 29 - 30, AspenCross
October 13-14, GunniCross
October 20-21, EagleCross
October 28 - November 4, Koppenberg Cross Camp, Belgium
November 10, UCI MountaineerCross, Gunnison
November 11, UCI SqwakerCross, Durango
November 18-25, Thanksgiving Cross Camp w/ Katie Compton, Koksijde, Belgium

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Sopris in the background.
Through my travels of being a coffee rep, one of my luxuries is that I get to ride various places, and have hit a number of new rides this season. But I have found a few that are so good, I keep tagging the same ride over and over. Carbondale has been pushing in serveral new trails, all just south of town in the shadow of Mt Sopris. Trails like Monte Carlo (has a hub cap as a trail head sign), XMas Tree zig zag the contours of the base of the hillsides, clamoring to the top. If you are ever in the Aspen valley - it is very worthy.

Riding through the canopy of trees.

Coffee biz is buzzing...ha ha. It seems people pallet for a good cup of Joe never fades. We just installed a new Franke Evolution in our tasting room, very nice. It is a good thing I live two hours away...

Cranking up the intensity for 'cross season, which brings me back to Carbondale, I look forward to a nice cool autumn day on these trails aboard my new IF 'cross rig.

Monday, July 09, 2007


my sweet new IF @ FTBW

I am consumed - consumed w/ starting new, a baby, a business and racing. having missed out on the first half of the season - or so it seems, I have rededicated myself to the challenge of getting fast again. it all came to a head yesterday on a ride where I peeled the layers and through proclamation realized my desire, desire to ride fast.

my baby is already strong, not yet showing his cards to world from in the womb, he moves about with purpose and I have felt him many times. it is a amazing, I can't wait to meet this guy.

check out:

ride fast.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Something happened to me on the wat to...

I have been in a toxic haze since the replaced my transmission. After a follow up visit to the dealer, they said it was some anitfreeze leaking onto the engine, my headache and continued lung burning would beg to differ.

To get some fresh air and purge the toxins out of my system, I stopped in Carbondale in my lethargic state, and forced my self out on the bike. Moisture in the air and on the trails lifted my spiirts as I rolled out south of town.

Oh, whats this? A singletrack, I remebr the one I have ridden on a couple of occasions further up the road, lets check it out. Nice, swoopy ribbon, peppered with rocks and roots. Smooth, nice flow, I am getting into this. Hey what the... a car? With a bridge/ ladder over it, sweet!

And whats this, a bermed out drainage? Cool! Man you can haul the mail on this thing. Nice climb out, check out the Lupines in full bloom, and those view back over the green valley, with the contrast of the white and grey clouds. Man what a nice day. Check out this nice grade, I bet it contours back around the mountain back to the road. The trail is so fast and tacky, this is so nice. Yep, here is the road, so if I go up I can catch that other singletrack. This is a bit more sloppy, but great for my Euro-style mtbing and 'cross training. Hey Mr. Cow, wait, Ms. Cow, I mistaked you for an-utter.

There's my entrance. Sick, yep I remember this. Whoa, watch it, its a little greasy here in the shade. Man I love these rollers. That was sick, I wonder if I can hit that single track I climbed up rather than rolling back down the road, yep, there it is.

Hell yeah, over the car! Mazn who ever built this trail 1) loves to ride, 2) knows this area very well, and 3) knows trail building. This has so much flow, and ducking under and through these tress, woo-hoo!!!

Man that was great, 135 average HR and 1:57 riding time, sweet!

Maybe it is my auto emmissions induced haze, or that was a sweet ride, either way I will be back for sure!

Monday, May 21, 2007


It is great to see all your friends each season, and to see what everyone has going. It is kind of funny, we have been doing this for so long, and we know so many people, and yet I always meet someone new, sometimes someone I have seen around.

Jesse Swift, Matt Unger, Tim Barnes & Colin aka onegear McKernin have formed a new team, GoFast/ Bikeparts. This Super-D team will be at most of the MSC events this summer along with otyher regional events, and from the looks of things, have a pretty good deal rolling. Colin is off to a fast start, killing it in the single speeds, 2nd @ Nathrop and won Battle at the Bear. It is awesome to see Colin doing so well.

Look like Jay Henry is riding for Tokyo Joes this season, as is Kerry Barnholt who won the womens single speed class at the Bear.

Is it me, or is Georgia Gould like scary fast this season???

Kelly McGelky, Jennifer Gersback, Kristina Maier and a few others make up the new Sports Garage squad, all of whom are riding the BMC machines.

We are helping U23 racer Dylan Stucki, who is sponsored by IF, we just shot some riding tips segments for RSN to be aired this summer. Dylan is racing in the semi-pro class aboard his sweet ne custom ti Independent Fabrication decked out with a FOX Shox, Shimano XTR, Titec, Hutchinson and Dt Swiss wheels.

Did my first race a couple of weeks ago, need some more miles and work, finished 2nd. I am looking forward to future competitions.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


Pedros was on hand at Sea Otter with their Love Van promoting their new Bio-Fizz cleaner, and Bio-Lube. Both are environmentally friendly and do a great job. Check out their website,, and give their new Bio-products a try. We will have samples at some of our clinics this summer.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


me ripping down some sweet german singletrack in what is now the new Mountainbikepark Pfaelzerwald, photo circa 1996

Well it is up, our new website, Sandi & I have often spoke about doing something like this when we were done racing (no were not done), and after brainstorming and picking other peoples minds, this is the end result. It should be a lot of fun to share these experiences with others, spreading our roots even further in the cycling/ outdoor industries, and offering some unique opportunities to others. We will have to see what happens. The website is new, there are some things to be added and cleaned up I am sure, but please give it a look over and shoot us your thoughts and comments.

Enjoy the ride!

Monday, April 02, 2007


Sandi & I headed out to Moab for the weekend for Myia & Mike's wedding, which was at the beautiful Rad Canyon Lodge & Vineyards along the Colorado River just east of Moab. The wedding was very nice, it was great to be in such a relaxing setting for a special occassion, and had a lot of fun talking with everyone, eating some tasty food, and of course bruched up on some dance moves. We had a quaint and cosy cabin we shared with some friends, and we could hear the water rushing over the rapids just a few meters from our balcony.

The next day after a filling brunch, Sandi & I venured into Arches and did an hour 45 min trail run on one of the longer loops, we called it sprint-site seeing. And with camera in hand, ran to all of the arches on the trail and branches off the loop. There were some great viewpoints, obstacles and trails to run on, although I believe the other tourists thought we were nuts...

My new steel IF geared bike is about finished, and I will have some bike porn up on it soon.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Hazed & Confused

Lets see, last week consisted of two days of riding in Fruita last weekend, a mtb ride here in Gunnison, skate skiing in CB, another ride in Fruita, snowboarding in Telluride, a run and it looks like snow as I sit here and write this. If variety is the spice of life then I am chowing down on a chilly-smoothered, Thai-tufo filled, Chipotle pepper, ina basil-feta cannoli. It is a mixed bag of activities right now.

Anyone catch Simoni's debut on the mountain bike (see picture). 5th at the Marathon World Cup opener, not bad for a small Italian roadie, and I thought Savaodelli was the one with riding skills... Is this the beginning of another wave of roadies coming over to the mtb scene? Probably not.

Looks like Tim jumped ship turning in his green colors for those of Fischer, what the hell are their colors anyway? Wonder if this is just a move for mountain bikes or something more permanent. Hopefully this means we will see him at some races this year.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Spring Break

Sandi & I took a week to recharge in Mexico, we were in Playa del Carmen to just drop out, which was perfect. Besides getting a great tan (got rid of those silly biker tan lines!), we did some sea kayaking- actually getting some great wave rides in, sailed a Hobie Cat each day, played lots of beach volleyball, and even some beach bocchia. Ate lots of sea food, and local cusine, checked out the ruins in Tulum, and enjoyed the great atmosphere down there. I was suprised how much the climate there rejuvinated my skin and hair. It was a much needed break, and we feel fresh.

The day we returned to Gunnison it was near 60, and I broke out my tan by riding two days in a row in a shortsleeve jersey and shorts! The trails up around the college are dry, and it felt so good to be on some single track again.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Year of the Townies

There is no shortage of townie inspired rides at the Small Framebuilders Show this year. I love a good commuter, and especially love this Retrotec from Curtis Englis, absolutely beautiful. Curtis turns out some great rides up in Nothern California, and is a pretty good rider, having ridden around Santa Rosa with him and Jeremy Sycip a few years back.

Can't wait to see more pics from the show...

Thursday, March 01, 2007


It recently came to my attention that someone was petitioning USACyling for a 35+ class like that of cyclo-cross, sort of an Elite class for the 35 and older crowd. What a great idea. I mean I would ride that class over single speeds! There are Master Worlds and in Europe there are master classes at most events, I have done two Master World Cups myself (Houffalize & Mount Saint Anne). Mountain states Cup has this idea on their forum right now, and while it is great to see a discussion on this topic, it sounds like nothing will happen this year at the National nor Regional levels.

Seeing the influence that the MSC series has is great, but at the same time it seems that the NMBS series is ever slipping into the pages of history. It is time for a change, to go along with the 35+ debate, here is one, how about a MTB USGP series? Only it would be great to see each region host a weekend of racing, (Noth East, South East, Midwest, Intermountain West, North West, and South West), with the respectable regional series hosting each one at new venues each year. These would be UCI and the largest national points events, with regional events (fewer National points) being the next tier and local events the next below that (fewr points than regionals). Riders then could compete for National Point Series titles, and not have to travel accross the land in the process, and this would also create a more structured feeder system for Juniors and beginner classes.

Time to clean house my friends...who will step up to the plate...

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Somewhere on the descente of the Teva Games

Colin shot me this link: for the Teva Games, it seems they found my face not too offensive and put it up on their webpage for this years edition of the cycling events in Vail. It is a sweet shot on a very small sliver of good single track on the course, I wasn't too impressed with the rest...

The Tour of California has turned out to be a great event, artly because of the great VS. coverage, and due in part to the great riding! I have three good friends out there, Jason Donald who had that great Prologue and has since slipped down the rankings, but is still getting he face and name on the coverage everyday; then there is Jason MCCartney, my old highschool friend from Burlington, he has done awesome moving up to thrid! Man I am stoked for him, he has worked hard for a long time, and it could not be happening to a nicer guy. And my good friend Dan the Mavic Man, driving around in one of the Mavic yellow cars providing tech support.

Tried a fish taco dish tonight, Baja style slaw, and seared Halibut, yummy.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

California Dreaming

Watching the Tour of California, it is hard to believe that it is so green and warm elswhere in the world, but I guess that is just me walking around with my blinders on. Not that i think we have it bad, I mean Fruita is still unridable, the front range has a much harder winter than us. This weekend I did a sweet ski with KT up in Mill Creek, and then a nice 2hr road ride with Sandi on sunday. In fact I have logged more days up here riding than last year driving to Montrose to ride (which we have yet to do). On the traininer I have like four or five days, from the sounds of Nat Ross's blog, he has many more than that. We have had it pretty good up here in the high country- well except for the fact I have been on my snowboard only once - but it was a powder day. The nordic skiing has been killer, in fact, I think I will hit it again today, but you can't help to be California Dreaming with those beautiful pics on VS. coverage. Hope Sea Otter will be that nice...

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Kicking the habit

This is not a 'new' album, first released in 2004, but it is for me. After hours of soaking my ears in the fresh, edgy sounds of XMU, I have discovered some new tunes to listen to, Grand National is one of these groups. The album "Kicking the National Habit" is a rebirth of the classic punk sound, but with a mix of European eletronica for an up-beat lively sound. I first heard Grand National on Sasch'a "Involver" album, featuring the track "Talk Amongst Yourselves", and loved it from the first listen. In fact "Kicking the National Habit" offers up Sacha's remix as a bonus track. Never dule, nor repetitive, I found myself eagerly awaiting the next track, and not wanting to fast forward or skip a song. It is on my iPod now, and prbably will be there for awhile.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

first rides

Gunnison has not been Gunnison this winter, only a few days of -0 temps, and it already feels like spring. after a day of the coffee trade, I hopped on the cross bike for a road ride, along with several others in Durango. Travis had told me he had been riding so I brought the cross bike figuring if the trails were dry (they weren't) I had options. It felt great to get out, Sandi & I had ridden last sunday following the alley loop. it is so figgin' cool to mix it up this time of the year, my weeks look like this:

Mon - 45min - 1hr run or 1 to 1 1/2 hrnordic ski + 1hr yoga
Tue - 1hr spin/ ride or run
Wed - 1 1/2 to 2hr skate ski hard
Thu - 1hr run
Fri - 2 hr spin/ride
Sat - skate ski race/ or 2 hr skate ski hard
Sun - classic tour or 2 hr road ride and 3 hrs snowboarding

all the way into april we can go to telluride for snowboarding or go skate skiing up in cb, then follow it up with road rides or mtbing in fruita. sounds like Colin is heading to AZ soon to ride, he'll be hooking up w/ Dejay...sounds like trouble to me.

I am building up my new IF hardtail and will have some reports on some new products soon.

remember, enjoy the process.

all things nordic

the winter has been great, despite the illusion by everyone else in the country that Colorado has a ton of snow (sorry, just denver), nordic skiing has been awesome. having hit the Grand Mesa nearly 10 times this season, and several other worthy locals, my skiing has come a long ways. proof is back in december I finished 3rd in the master's 10k in crested butte to some fast skiers, guys who burried me in the past by several minutes. then at a sprint race on western state's campus (it was fun to throw down on skis around the same places we have our cyclo-cross events) I pulled out a 2nd against a bunch of younger and more experienced skiers. then over the past weekend I won the master's class in the 21k in the alley loop in cb taking 3rd overall. Traveis Brown was in attendance doing the 42k and took an impressive 4th overall, he has mad skills on the skis just like the bike, wow.

skate skiing to me is much like single speeding, hard efforts on the climbs, ripping the descents and especially at areas like aspen, frisco, leadville (tennessee pass) and the grand mesa, it is so much fun. your out there, flying down trails, through trees and some great scenery, just epic. next year i will be having clinics specifically for cyclists looking for a great winter training programs to boost their summer performances along with picking something up that is so much fun.

Salomon has me on their '08 Equipe 10's and they are sweet. new construction, more 3D shape, nmex core mean lighter overall weight, but more so verylow swing weight, more snap on the kick means more power transfer, and they are fast. I have been loving breaking these guys in.

I glued up some semi-slicks on the 'cross bike as I am slowly mixing in some riding for the coming season. Fruita is in bad shape, snow mud, and long ways before there will be riding down there.