St. Paul / Red Wing / St. Paul
1. The Third Annual Stay Classy Classic (or #StayClassy as it will be known going forth) took place on August the 30th of the year Two-Thousand and Fifteen.
2. Five (5) Teams of (about) five participants toed the start line. They were as follows (from first start to last) :
- The Radlest (p/b Birchwood Cafe)
- Team ??? (p/b Also Birchwood Cafe)
- Flux Redux (p/b Grand Performance)
- Freewheelers (p/b Freewheel maybe)
- Team Musette (p/b This Blog)
3. The weather was nice, if sort of gloomy at the beginning. The sun eventually made her debut.
4. We were once again blessed to be sort-of but not-really officially sponsored by Pearson's Salted Nut Rolls. This year we ran out of the Saltiest Nut Roll at around Mile 70. It's proprietary combination of peanuts and salt gives riders the fortitude necessary to tackle the 4,500 or whatever feet of climbing the Stay Classy possesses.
5. 27 of 28 Participants Finished, which is good enough to pass regional requirements for a successful race.
6. HW 61 in Red Wing, MN is a torn up mess.
7. The climb out of Welch Village is just as pretty as I remember. It has the same amount of shoulder as well (none).
8. It cannot be stated that existential crises arose from the vast expanses of farmland riders faced towards the second-half of the event. It also cannot be stated that the vast expanses quieted any fears riders had about their place in the vast nothingness of our Universe.
9. Three 'Papa Sized' Papa John's pizzas were consumed at the end by finishers. Three 'Large Sized' Papa John's pizzas were also consumed after it was discovered that the race director had greatly underestimated the strength of the finisher's appetites.
10. Five (5) Teams of (about) five participants made it all the way to Omnium Bike Shop in Saint Paul, MN. There were as follows (from first finish to last) :
- The Radlest (Official Time : About 6 Hours or Whatever)
- Team Flux Redux (Official Time : Like, 30 Minutes after The Radlest)
- Team Freewheelers (Official Time : 7 Hour and 30 Minutes, I think)
- Team ??? (Official Time : Almost the same as the Freewheelers, dawg)
- Team Musette (Official Time : Last! As it should be)
Presented in glorious, not-exclusive P A N O V I S I O N
1. 'All you have to do is ride your bike. You don't have to keep up with anyone. You don't have to crush it. You just have to ride your bike all damn day long.' - John Lewis
2. The Deerfield Dirt Road Randonnee (or D2R2 as it is known) is an organized ride born in 2005.
3. These six (6) descriptions are listed on the D2R2 website. They are as follows :
- The courses will use the narrowest, oldest, twistiest, quietest, and most-scenic roads available.*
- A range of courses will provide access to novices as well as challenge the world's strongest riders.
- D2R2 will never offer prizes for anything other than gags, nor will finish results ever be presented like it was a race.
- Riders shall cover the course in a self-sufficient manner, without motorized crew vehicles.
- The organization will put as much effort into its food offerings as it does the ride itself.
- D2R2 will remain a key fundraiser for the Franklin Land Trust's efforts to conserve land in the region.
4. There were five (5) of us attempting the 160k route :
- John Lewis
- Neighbor Jon
- Sam Leadholm
- Andrew On-holy-fuck-25c-tires-you-have-got-to-be-kidding-me**
6. 'Warning : Road No Longer Maintained - Proceed At Your Own Risk'
8. The Pasela PT as described on Panaracer's (poorly translated) website : 'To meet a wide range of size variation in various situations, such as commuting, touring.'
9. The Watermelon Lady at the final rest stop.
10. It was all so fucking gorgeous. I mean, really, it was a little too much, New England. Stop being so quaint already.****
11. My greatest mistake was leaving behind those Sweet Chili Doritos at the Market. They matched my kit perfectly.
12. 'Just make it to the next rise.'
*They never let up. Not even five miles from the finish. These people are sadists.
**Not only did he ride 25c tires for the entire 160k, but he probably ended up with more since he kept doing hill repeats. Plus, he basically downhill MTB'd on them. This dude was insane in the best way.
***It really was. I've had some hard days on the bike, but nothing like that. Without the encouragement and steadfast waiting around that all four of these gentlemen did, I would not have made it twenty miles, much less the whole thing. Thank you, dudes.
****Seriously, New England. Jeeeeeez.
1. Breakaway Bikes : 'Holy shit - a new Madone?'
2. Philadelphia Bike Smith : Mitch is one heck of a mechanic and nice dude. Also : Tuesday the Dog!
3. Trophy Bikes : That's a lot of Surly. Also : Grand Bois tires!
4. Firehouse Cycles : 'Oh, look - a brewery. There's bikes parked out front. I wonder if there's a bike shop around...'
5. Bike King : Little Italy
6. Ciel Bikes : Bike boxes in the bathroom. The struggle is real.
7. Conrad's : Legendary
8. Ride Brooklyn : Cannondale
9. NYC Velo : 'SAS, Speedvagen, nice staff - what's not to like?'
10. Rapha Cycle Club NYC : Fuck you, this is my blog post. Also Derek Lewis is a nice dude.
11. R&A Cycles : It's not fair that a shop with that many Colnago's also has a friendly staff. It's just not.
12. Redbeard Bikes : YES. Also : primo food truck placement.
13. Bicycle Habitat : 'Oh, another new Madone? Whatever.'
14. Ride Studio Cafe : There's a neurosurgeon working the coffee bar and two of my favorite mechanics behind the stand. What's not to like?
15. JRA Cycles : Best CX bike selection.
A small sampling of the photos Mr. Bahr has taken this past season during our Saturday morning jaunts.
I, for one, am a fan.
Contributed By : Mikesonn
1. 264 miles and ~16 hrs of time in the saddle.
2. Northern Wisconsin has a lot of capitols of things. Mostly animals.
3. #PROTIP : E. Louisiana Street is *not* the best way out of St Croix Falls.
4. If you find a velodrome, ride said velodrome.
5. The key to riding your bike for long distances is to keep riding your bike.
Stay At The Front
For those of you not in the know, there now exists a #MiniMusette. More often than not, I find myself drawing on my small puddle of cycling knowledge to guide myself through the trials of parenthood. More often than not, it works (sort of). For those of you who think 'pffft... like I care' - that's just your opinion, man.
When you first start dipping your toes into amateur bike racing pool, you'll be inundated with advice. It used to be that this advice was precious - obtained only through entering the good graces of some veteran of the pack - but no longer. Now, advice is no longer in short supply. 'Good' advice can be found just about anywhere online or - failing that - step into any number of bike shops to learn how to quickly obtain cycling stardom.
For those of you who are also parents, you may be familiar with this concept. I don't think I've read two parenting books (all of which are vetted to be the highest of truth) that agreed on anything.
But there are a few nuggets of truth that this ocean of lies possesses.
Tell someone you're going to race a bike and they'll tell you to stay at the front. Just stay at the front. And it makes sense - everything is easier at the front. You can set the pace. You can watch the moves as they fly off. You can pick the best lines. Everything is easier at the front.
So it goes with parenting.
Of course, being at the front requires preparation. You have to have the fitness to get there and stay there. You have to have the knowledge of how to move in a pack. You have to know what wheels to follow and which to abandon. Preparation is the key to being at the front. No one tells you that part, however.
There are a million tricks, but only one reliable way. Prepare. Get sleep. Plan ahead.
And stay at the front.
-- RUN PROGRAM --
Is Bird talking?
YES - OK, you're safe for now
NO - See below
Is Bird asking a question?
YES - Answer Question with varying degree of wit
NO - See below
Is the race still going on?
YES - See Below
NO - Shut up
Say some sponsor cards, quick!
-- END PROGRAM --
2. It is warm.**
3. In 1937, Vernon Rudolph [founder of Krispy Kreme] opened his own store, deciding on Winston-Salem, North Carolina for the location when he learned that his favorite cigarette company, Camel Cigarettes, was headquartered in the small North Carolina city.***
5. Bike Shops Visited w/ Easiest Recalled Memory (chronologically ordered) :
- The Spindle ATL / Watermelon Punch + Fancy
- Atlanta Beltline Bicycle / Sick drop-in to the Beltline out back
- Loose Nut Cycles / Did not have Erin Young's**** Lock
6. There is a ton of kick-ass art in and around the City.
7. To the Caribou Coffee on 10th St. NE & Piedmont Ave - thanks for a little slice of home and your ridiculously great air conditioning/wifi.
8. To the Atlanta Cycling Festival - you're doing the good work. Hard to believe that was just your second year. I can't wait to see where you take this.
10. Atlanta, GA is sure to become a cycling hub for the Southeast in the coming years. It is impressive how far they have come and the momentum that can be felt. Like an energy buzzing beneath the surface. Between the ACF, amazing shops like the Spindle, MARTA and advocates like Atlanta Velo City, it certainly won't take long. These are dedicated, smart, engaging folks working towards a common goal.
So take some time and visit. You won't be disappointed.
And in the wise words of my new friend Alex - only go to Waffle House if you're drunk or hungover.
*Full Disclosure : Luke at Calhoun Cycle allowed me the use of one of their Brompton Bicycles for the trip in exchange for words typed on a keyboard. Of course the bike was flippin' rad so that wasn't difficult. Expect to see more Brompton antics on the blog soon.
****Track Heartthrob Extraordinaire
1. Mattio Montesano
2. Erin Young
3. Sam Morgan
4. Ben Hovland
5. Lilah Guertin
7. Brandon Krawczyk
8. The Adam Gorski
9. Nate Ryan
1. Fail·ure ˈfālyər/ noun :
a. Lack of success.
b. The omission of expected or required action.
2. Success is objective, though omission of the expected is not.
3. Unforeseen obstacles produce the best opportunities.
4. Walking two miles to knock on farm house doors ain't so bad when you get to meet chickens along the way.
5. Dirt is as cleansing as rain.
6. Friends who bring beats are some of the best friends to have. (EDITOR'S NOTE : Michael Mason)
7. I need a Saint Paul kit (but wow is this one beautiful).
8. The Route
1. It is relatively easy to get around the City using only your two feet, MUNI pass and good looks.
2. Bike Shops Visited w/ Easiest Recalled Memory (chronologically ordered) :
- Rapha Cycle Club SF* / Maple Bacon Raised Doughnut
- Sports Basement / Not exclusively in a basement
- Above Category / Fantastic natural light
- Mash SF / A dog pee'd on the door while I tried to take a photo
3. Randomly meeting Mark (member of the indomitable SFCC) at the Rapha Cycle Club SF. As he is a fellow Seven Cycles owner and as of such is required to be a gentleperson of the highest caliber, he took it upon himself to show me around the Marina District, Presidio, Golden Gate Bridge and Marin Headlands. It ended up being one hell of a good bike ride. You can check it out in this video he made.
5. SF2G makes it mighty easy for an out-of-town individual to make his/her way to Google from the Downtown area. Without Ben's guidance from the Millbrae BART/Caltrain station, I may still be lost in the wilds of Silicon Valley.
7. Strava has an entire second floor dedicated to Yoga, Stretching and other Well-Being-esq activities. I assume this is to properly recover from product testing on the way into work every day.
8. The predominant smell of Eucalyptus
9. If you order from Escape From New York Pizza, a medium is more than enough.
10. Everyone knows of, and misses, Mikesonn.***
* Kind of but not really a bike shop
** Thanks, Homer!
*** Not even true.
Welcome to the new home of the Minneapolis Musette.