Friday, July 31, 2009

Gurus, Happy Hour and child labor...oh my

The fridge pre Happy Hour!

Melanie in for her prefit. measuring steerer tube an aero bar extension length. This allows for perfect cable runs and such in the build process.

The Canadian Express! Dacree helping dad...carry a frame to the car...

Finished with race wheels
Finished with training wheels

So Monday I decided to have a last minute happy hour. I found myself with more beer in the fridge at the shop than water, sodas, and sports drinks. I don't really drink some time to unload and have the first happy hour at Shama Cycles. Having about 15 people through the shop was awesome and everyone just kinda hung out. Though Greg and a couple others got stuck turning wrenches. I also learned something new that evening. Papa John's had $5 pizzas if you pick them up. We went through 4 that night. Fun times and I had plenty of requests to do it again so I shall. Once a month for now.
This week was exceptionally busy with Retul fits and consultations. Not to mention being able to receive and deliver a customer's bike this week. Guru knocked out a full custom carbon Magis tri frame in like 3 weeks. AMAZING! I got the bike in Wednesday, did a pre fitting yesterday and I built it last night and today. She came by this afternoon to get her Retul fit done on her completed race rig. The bike fit was pretty easy, some tweaks here and there and checking her knee tracking and such with the Retul and she was ready to try it outside. This is the part I love the most. Watching them ride away from me down the strip and then as they hit the brakes and slowly turn around I see it...the huge silly grin of just sheer delight. The kinda grin you get from being told that eating ice cream will help you loose weight or something like that. I saw the cheesy smile as she rode back towards me and as I admired my work in action! Days like today... work hard for these days and love every second of them when they come.

First real attempt at a shop day

Rolling along on a beautiful morning. All I see in this picture is the white Euro Cool!!!!

Jess, Wilmer, Kristen, Chris.
It was Chris's birthday that at the Shell station 44 sweaty, smooth legged, Lycra clad men serenaded him with a song. There were 6 girls there too...
Its a tough job but someone has to do it.
And YES those are white bib shorts Helen is wearing....quit possibly the single hottest pair of shorts I have EVER seen.
The roll out...just a little late...
With the help of my friend Chris Lockwood putting out emails and a great map. Shama Cycles had its first real organized ride from the shop. Open to all...even triathletes and their tri bikes. We did the Lake Houston route and rolled out about 40 strong at 7am. More joined us along the way creeping our number to 50. The group stayed together pretty well and the pace was rather quick for our normal group ride. In all a great ride...that was followed up by Le Tour playing on the TV and food and drinks out for some post ride recovery. A very fun day and I can't wait to do it again. Look for weekly postings on rides to come soon.

NYC Triathlon race report

Great shot of an awesome bike and a great fit. Nothing....NOTHING beats custom. Proof is in the results.

Chip time...2:13:08 good enough for 6th in his AG 77th overall out of over 2000 racers.

Ripped and out of the water.

Notice the proper post race finishers shot. Shama Cycles tech t and Coach hat.
Well done Rich...well done...

With the customer base I am building I am getting race reports from races each weekend it seems and pics to go with sometimes. Its always great to get and love hearing about my athletes having great race days. This one is a great one. Just started racing two years ago, took a year off, came back this year on a Guru Crono and with a vengeance! Thanks Rich for the report and congrats on the great day you had....


Thanks for all your help in getting me prepared for the NYC Tri. First of all, your advice to use the HED Jet 6 C2s was right on. They climbed awesome and handled really well in the cross wind even though the roads were nasty wet. Dropping my position by cutting the steerer tube and narrowing the aero bars felt great. On several of the steep descents I caught some nice rest tucking and getting super aero. The guys that I kept trading position with on the ride must have been really confused as I passed them without even peddling...them cranking away in their big ring. When I got off the bike, my legs felt great allowing me to hold a 6:42 pace for 10K. I came in with a PR of 2:13:08; a 7 minute improvement from CapTex earlier this year!

Thanks again man,


Monday, July 20, 2009

Guru Magis for Teresa....

This time last year I met a girl through some mutual friends named Teresa who came to me for a fitting. After some quick assessments it became clear her bike was too big for her. I did what I could we put on some shorter cranks to help her out with that ill fitting frame. Of course from then on every time I saw her at the park or out on a ride I would harass her about getting a new Guru bike. Finally I broke her down and she gave in back in June and we started the process. There are two ways to buy a Guru. One is you come in and put down more money on a completely new bike than you did on your car or you buy a frame and maybe a couple new parts....but strip the rest from the bike you currently own and ride. This is what Teresa did. We looked at the parts she had on her frame which are Ultegra but her aero bars had to go. We pieced together a great build. Her shifters, brakes, front and rear D, wheels, tires and the cranks that I sold her a while back were all used. What did we add? HED Classic Aerobars, Ultegra cassette, KMC chain, Enduro Zero pulley wheels, Rotor SABB ceramic bottom bracket, KCNC stem, Selle SMP saddle, XLab SuperWing, Elite cages and Jagwire premium cables. The build was awesome and it came out great and at 17lbs...not bad...not bad at all. Now for the best part. The bike came in and I did a pre-fit. This is to double check the stem length choice and to cut down the aero bars to perfection and already she said it was felling better. After the build she came back for her Retul fitting. She has some pretty major back issues and the bike was designed for this purpose. We spent our time on the fitting and the bike was ready. Today she rode it for the first time. Post ride I got a text from her talking about how awesome the bike was and the compliments she got on it today. This is what I love to hear and why I do what I do. I can't wait to hear about her future rides on it...

Sunday, July 19, 2009

La Vuelta de Acadiana- 2009 Stage Race

Chris Lowry second in the first stage to Matt Davis, current National AG champ.

Eric Attayi finishing first with Greg Bauer close behind...the pack is back there...way back!

Me on the front of the crit....that was FUN!

LOWDA on the podium after her crit win on stage 1.

Team work
Aimee giving Laura her feed. Aimee is the best team mate!!!

Well I attempted another stage race this year. This time building up a tt bike the week before the race...not the night before. The main draw was not even the race but the people going and staying all in the same house. In all it turned out to be a great weekend! For me it started off leaving the shop at 5:30pm to go home and pack and then pick up Joy and Jorge. Support crew/photography. Going out of state I was not sure if there would be a photographer and being the picture whore that I am I had to bring my own just in cases. So we made the hike into Louisiana and after missing the 1,2,3s and the woman's crit race that night we made it to the house about 11ish. Who needs sleep before a race at 8am. I found out the time of my race when we made it in. Yeah an 8am 60 mile race, then an afternoon 3.75mile time trial and a Sunday morning crit. OUCH! I was not the one taking this one serious. Thankfully I have racers who do. Highlight of the weekend...Laura Meichan aka LOWDA won the first stage which was the Friday night crit, second in the road race, second in the time trial (which put her 2nd into the final crit by 4 seconds) and then after winning back hot spot points on a solo break away and then winning the crit by drilling it out of the final turn and holding them all off for the win...LOWDA won GC!!! That had to be one of the most exciting races I have watched and most rewarding since it was one of my girls who won and was on a custom Guru! ha!
Next up...Eric Attayi won his first race as a Cat 3. Good for him you say? Yes...but this was no ordinary race. This was a SUPER FLAT 80 mile road race of which he was in a break for 60 miles. The pack brought the break back and with Eric rolling as the lone Shama in that race and since ruining GC chances with a wreck in the crit the night before...he offered to help a friend of ours who was going for GC...Chris Lowry of Sugar Cycles. Chris said for him and Greg to get to the front and lead it out in the last 5k. Eric and Greg got to the front and then began to ramp it up and line it out. Greg looked back and saw a huge gap...the pack did not react till it was too late and Greg and Eric rolled to the line with a 15 second gap. Eric and Greg were having a discussion of who would get it and Greg did not want to sprint against Eric aka The Juggernaut. Eric had won his first road race and as a Cat 3 and done it with some serious talent in the field. AMAZING! Greg Bauer (part time Shama wrench and Sugar racer) enjoyed a second place finish. From there Trey Copeland with Southern Elite finished the weekend as highest GC Cat 3. I happened to mention several people on Facebook but then got word from his wife that he felt left out when I forgot that info in my Facebook posts. HAHAHA So I am sure to list it here. ;-)
Next up...Chris Lowry...we were Cat4s together on the same team 4 years ago. Now...he is one of the more respected Cat2s in Texas and I am still a Cat 4....he takes racing WAY more seriously than me. Or maybe he is just fitter and faster than I am. Not likely but what ever!! ha So three weeks ago Chris came in with his road bike and tt bike. We hooked him up to the Retul and played with some cleat positioning and slight saddle adjustments. First test at a Memorial Park Crit his HR was lower for the same power. This weekend all of his training and hard work paid off with his first win in the final crit on Sunday. Brant Speed of Austin Flyers and a Herring Gas guy went off the front in about the first lap. They had 30seconds on the feild and disorganized attacks and efforts did not bring them back until Brant was reeled in on the final turn on the final lap. True Tour de France style. But I was routing for my Houston boyz no matter the team! Greg Bauer (team mate of Chris) attacked and drew out the studs on his wheel...Greg began to swerve all over the road trying to shake em and when he went left...Chris stayed right and drilled an open line right to the line. He held over 1000watts for 22 seconds for the WIN! His first win...yes FIRST! This made it all the more sweeter and everyone could not be happier for him!
Oh yeah...I raced too. Flat 60mile race...PERFECT! The pace was pretty easy and only got a little challenging at times so in lap 2 of 4 I started to get on the front and test the waters. I found my friends there with me (even though on other teams Houston/Texas boys were looking out) and was having a blast. From my last decent TT the weekend before I was thinking maybe I would get top 10 GC or something. We rolled into the 3rd loop and I heard the sound...the sound of a latex tube letting the air out of your tire. But it was cool...I have wheels in the wheel truck behind us and our pace was like 22 or something. I got my wheel and started chasing...actually I was not feeling that great after the stop and was hitting 24 to 25 for about 5 -6 miles getting with in 100 yards of the pack...and then I saw it went from a mob to a line...NOOOOOO!!!!!! It broke me...mentally...which for the next two loops broke me physically. There were times I road and felt I could not even do 16mph. I even stopped to stretch and have a talk with self while peeing on the side of the road. I made it in and finished so I could continue to the TT in the afternoon and the crit the next day. I was pretty bummed but what can ya do. I was riding my bike and that would just have to be good enough. I finished just in time to wait about 10 minutes to watch the 123s finish thier 80 mile race. Which was awesome cause I was able to watch Eric come through solo for the win for SHAMA! Ok....back to the house to eat and rest before going back to the TT. I was a little too relaxed about getting there and found myself slipping on my white shoe covers and new Lazer Tardiz tt helmet with 5 minutes before my start time. Who needs a warm up for a 3.75 mile tt??? (thumbs up and silly grin on face) This guy!
I get in line and I don't know the guy infront of me but he looked as serious as I looked and behind me was Todd Stamm, a friend of mine on my old team, so I quickly began to talk smack to him about how this is the last time he will see me till the finish. My time came and I quickly displayed my power by sprinting up to 30 miles per hour before sitting down and settling in to my aero bars. This lasted for maybe the first .75 miles. Then it began to hurt...bad! I had to back it down...shift...catch my breath and try to get the acid out of my legs that quickly reminded me they already gave me a 30 mile TT in the morning after my flat. I settled in again and found myself at 27 and was gaining on my 30 second man. AWESOME! I AM GOING TO KILL IT!!! I hit the line barely able to keep myself from throwing up the Raising Cane's chicken tenders I had for lunch. No sooner did I down shift and start to brake here comes Todd rolling up on me. That dude nearly caught me! Here I am feeling good about my TT and here comes this guy putting just under 30 seconds into me. No matter...I did the best I could and left everything out there. Time to party! We all seemed a bit more tired after that than the rr in the morning. Got back to the house and found the girls and Jorge drinking this wonderful frozen Daiquiri mix from a gallon jug that they got from a drive through. Yes, only in Louisiana!!!! We showered and 18 of us mobbed a nice eating establishment for dinner and good times. Probably one of the best parts of the weekend...just everyone cutting up and talking about the racing that morning as well as just about anything else. Post dinner...Sonics was calling my name and I had to get a Sonic Blast. Did I need it? No...but I enjoyed it none the less. Morning came...I got to the races in time to watch LOWDA attack for the hot spot points and then watch her sprint for the win! I was PUMPED! I saw my effort yesterday in the TT was good enough for 10th place. Had I not flatted I could be in my goal...a top ten. But I am not so what to do??? I notice my friend Todd is in first with the fastest TT. I talked to him and his team mates and said I am in for helping. I would rather see a friend keep his first GC win than try to race for myself since I am second to last in GC. I knew there were some strong teams there that would go for the hot spot and finish to take back time on him. The crit started and I waited a couple laps to warm up and feel the rhythm. Then I started having tons of fun. Attacking the other teams after they pulled, covering attacks and sitting in on them, and then I happened to be off the front when the hot spot lap bell rung. I was caught going into the last turn but then I just ramped it up even more giving it all I had to till the contenders came around me to sprint to the line...Blake (Houston boy sitting in 3rd) nipped 4th place on the line for the time bonus helping Todd keep his lead for now. That effort to the line was hard and I totally blew myself up and was expected to get dropped. As I barely turn the pedals over at 20mph I roll back into a tired group. I guess I did a good job to make everyone tired. So I recovered too and started attacking and driving the pace all over again. Finally I pulled out with two to go to watch the finish. I was done and did all I could do. The result of my sacrificed race??? Todd won GC overall and Blake Krause 3rd overall, so I was proud of that. Not to mention Jorge got some great pics of us all out there. Myself and others that raced could not have done it without the help and support of our team mates and loved ones out there. A special thanks to Aimee and her parents for letting us stay at their house and for Aimee, Joy and Lynn being the best hand up, pre and post race crew anyone could ever have. I drove home tired but happy with a great weekend of racing with great friends! Next year... I want revenge on that road race course!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

OnURLeft Duathlon

Above, the new Guru Crono which did me right today.
Below, Maite updating her FB status. Jorge pointing at the window treatments. Greg pondering taking up competitive bowling after I SPANKED him on the bike. haha

Time to start catching up on the blog. I am being harassed for letting nearly a month go since my last update. Lots going on. But no excuses right???
Today was a sprint duathlon, the Onurleft Duathlon. Not a bad race for the first one. I hope it grows and gets bigger for next year. The first hard part about this race was the start time. 6:45am. OMG! Are you serious? But in light of our triple digit temperatures lately actually a really good call. Ok, to the race. I have not been riding and just this past week built up a tt bike. I hadn't ridden a tt bike since Feb or March. But with a stage race next weekend I figured it might be good to get on it a couple times before the race. So I put in a huge training week finished off with pulling Dacree 55 miles yesterday just to finish me off properly. So this morning as tired as can be and with some very sore legs I made my way to the race. The only thing that made me look like I was ready was my bike. Pretty sick if I do say so myself. I got to the race a little later than planned but still enough time to get my number, bike racked, and pee before the start. Yeah, but my only warm up was the run to and from the bathroom. Had I ran any more I am afraid I would not have been able to finish the race since I have not been running except this week. haha
I am not alone at this race. I am joined by some of my faithful (better trained and race ready) Shama Tri team members and friends. The most fun is the trash talk amongst friends. I spend my time saying hi to everyone trying to keep my mind off of the pain to come. The gun goes off and I start to run. Trying to keep my friends in sight but its not easy. I keep in my mind the advice that Coach Trent gave super slow on the first run, bleed on the bike and hobble in the second run. YEAH RIGHT! But that is about what I did. I cruised the first run. Got to the bike and had a hard time getting past 24 at first. But then by mile two I warmed up and started cruising. I starting passing people and picking off friends and competition. I started seeing 27 and knew not to kill myself past that or I would be stopping. Slowed down, had to drink, but found a good carrot, a fellow road racer ahead and the pain began. It took me nearly 7 miles to make the catch but it was worth it. I was not passed by anyone, the first for me in a du. Also the first time for me to ride a custom (for me) tt bike. Guru Crono. Smooth and fast. Not sure of my tt split I rolled into T2 tired and not knowing how I am going to run two more miles. I am not sure of my first half mile but it could not be pretty. I wanted to stop but I kept going. I got to a turn and some one was calling out a count of runners ahead. After being passed by 7 people before that I heard 26 ahead. WOW had I passed that many on the run? I kept it up. I wanted to come in top 50 at least. (200 racers) So I tried hard and kept a decent pace. My legs were screaming!!!! I was tired and wanted to sleep. I couldn't even keep count of those that passed me. Amazingly the finish line came up on me quickly and I came through the finish. I don't remember much of what I was thinking other than try not to suck too badly. LOL I was happy to be done saw most of The Shama Racers already done. Which is where they should be. ;-) But we still had a couple on course to cheer on!!!! As soon as we were all in...FOOD! We started making plans of where to eat. We packed our bikes and on the way out we saw the results being posted. I rushed over and low and behold I was 2nd in my AG and had the 2nd fastest bike split of the race!!!! (official web results show me knocked down one spot in each. But no worries I still got some bragging rights and with a bike split like that I could not have been happier. I was more surprised than anything. I have not had this good of a split at a race yet. I just might have to keep running and do some more of these....maybe even swim a little and dare I say do another triathlon...

The goods! Shama Team and FOPs

Kristen A 2nd in AG
Jenny H 4 in AG
Laura M 1st in AG (fastest female bike split)
Anne F 7th in AG
Dave D Masters Overall
ME 3rd in AG
Jorge M 4th in AG
Jeremy Rowe 2nd in AG
Greg B 4th in AG (I beat him on the bike!!!!! haha)
Brett Cole 1st in AG
Greg C 4th in AG
Andy A 5th in AG
Nigel W 3rd in AG

CONGRATS TO ALL on a great day of racing.