September 22, 2008

Support Mountain Biking and Veto A.B 2923

Tell the Governor to Support Mountain Biking by Vetoing Dangerous Bill


The California Legislature has sent Assembly Bill 2923 to Governor
 Schwarzenegger's desk, with potentially disastrous results for popular
 mountain biking destinations. The bill is the first step in possible
 Wilderness designations that would eliminate classic mountain biking
 trails at Henry Coe State Park, Robert Lewis Stevenson State Park and
 Austin Creek State Recreation Area. State Wilderness may be
 appropriate in some areas, but not these parks

. You must act now!


Small Cyclocross Program Fires Off Surprisingly Strong Roster

SUNNYVALE, CA (September 22, 2008) – Sterling Sports Group is pleased to announce their 2008 Cyclocross Team roster. Built around a core group of 14 riders, the team is composed of an exciting combination of talent, experience, youth, enthusiasm, and attitude. The team scored a bit of a coup by landing Mike Sayers as it’s lead rider. Sayers is a long time stalwart of the US Professional road scene, and is eagerly embracing his first foray into the world of cyclocross. “I’m honored to have Mike on the team. His leadership and approachability will be great assets to our young team,” says team manager Matt McNamara. In addition to Mr. Sayers, the team boasts several top tier athletes including multiple State Champion Liza Rachetto, promising juniors Matt Valencia and Anthony Delivannis, several speedy Masters and a quartet of Elite B riders looking to move up.

Mike Sayers puts it all in perspective when he says “It’s going to be really nice to be a part of this program. I’m sure having fun is the name of the game.” That aura of fun is certainly be enhanced by the other members of the team. From Masters to Juniors this is a truly unique program. Chris Carroll is perhaps the most inspiring member of the team. Chris had a heart transplant in 2002 and is super motivated to race to his hearts content, to turn a phrase. Add to the mix experienced riders like Aaron Hunter, Matt Idler, Jason Sage and Bill Strachan, rookies like the junior terrors Matt Valencia and Anthony Delivannis; and masters like Ed Miszkiewicz and Justin Kromelow and you just know we’re in for a fun season!

The team is focused on rider development through an innovative program that provides each rider with a personalized coaching program, weekly training rides, event and equipment support, and camraderie. Events wise the team will focus on the Northern California calendar including the Bay Area Super Prestige Series, Central Coast and Sacramento Series’, with a couple of National level events likely. The team, officially known as presented by Leopard Bikes, will ride the brand new, 1100 gram, Carbon Fiber Leopard CX1 bike adorned with Ritchey WCS components, and SRAM drivetrains.

Mike Sayers – UCI Pro / Elite A’s – 12 year professional for BMC, Health Net, Mercury
Liza Rachetto – Womens Elite A – 2008 Idaho State Criterium Champion
Matt McNamara – Elite A’s – Team Manager and USAC Level 1 Coach
Matt Valencia – Junior – multiple top 10’s at 2008 Junior Nationals
Anthony Delivannis – Junior
Aaron Hunter – Master 35+A
Bill Strachan – Masters 45+A
Jason Sage – Elite B’s
Matt Idler – Elite B’s, Team Coach
Justin Kromelow – Masters B35+
Chris Carroll – Elite C’s
Ed Miszkiewicz - Master 50+ C

Frames: Leopard CX1 1100g Carbon Fiber
Components: Ritchey WCS
Drivetrain: SRAM

Sterling Sports Group ( is the result of over 20 years of passion for the sport of cycling. Launched in late 2003, Sterling Sports is a growing company focused on creating a seamless interface between athlete and coach, technology and personal attention.

September 16, 2008

Finally I'm A Category 1*

*Ok, so really I'm still an Expert off-road, but with USAC changing the categories for mountian biking in 2009, I'll be a legit Cat 1! Truth be told I haven't done a MTB race since probably 2000 or 2001, but the license still says EXPERT, err CAT 1 come January 1st!
Of course this brings me to another point - Crits. Love 'em! Went up to the city and snookered my way into the SF Twilight race on Saturday so I could ride around with some fast guys, feel cool, and try to look competent. Race started and I was pretty far back...far enough that I couldn't see, much less get to, the front for the first 15minutes or so (I actually almost threw up - which has NEVER happened in a race..gotta be the coffee 30minutes before the start). Anyway, after those first arduous minutes I kinda settled in and started picking off guys on my way to the front. 3 or 4 each lap, maybe 10 on a good one (there were 118 at the start) and slowly but surely I was into the top 20 with about 30minutes left. It was fun! It also pointed out something that seems both odd and strangely euphoric - cornering. You'd think that Pro/1/2 riders would be very adept at handling high speed corners in tight quarters - and they are for the most part. The interesting thing on Saturday was the willingness to simply follow the wheel in front, even if it meant slowing down precipitously, then having to jump hard out of the corner - every time. Now, I'm not very fit so I can't afford to be surging too much - I gotta keep as much momentum into corners as I can! Don't think I 'dive' corners - I'm old and have a family so that sort of reckless riding is in my past. But, and here's where the strange euphoria came in, it seemed that every time I came into a corner a natural lane would open up. Didn't matter if I was outside, inside, or stuck in the middle - a couple of inches (or feet) would suddenly appear between the riders in front of me and I'd have room to maneuver. It was great! Especially the uphill-into-turn-4...I rolled through in an easy gear (53x19 or 21) with lots of momentum and a lane to exploit - that's where and how I picked up those 3-10 spots each lap. For whatever reason it just seemed that everyone else was over-geared and riding slow. As evidence I'll point to Fred Rodriguez - for the last five laps or so I followed him around. Time and again he'd shoot up the outside of the road into turn 4 and it was wide open each time...easy path forward. Which is the point late in fast crits - defending your position and rotating forward!! Anyway, I finished 27th....but was happy with that considering my relative lack of riding, fitness, or muscle endurance. A few numbers for those that care - 1h15min, 26.4mph avg (yea, slow eh?!), but my Normalized Power was 313 for the whole race - pretty high considering the speed. Interestingly the race was more 'surgy' than normal - I was either at 0 watts or over each lap.

September 09, 2008

Masters Track Nationals

This past week Hellyer Park hosted the 2008 Masters National Track Championships. Run over the better part of the week (tuesday - sunday) it was a veritable cornucopia of speed. Events ranged from 200m to 30Km, and ages ranged from 30 to over 70! There were over 900 event registrations, and something like 450 athletes i don't know if that's a record, but it certainly made for some busy lanes on the cement during warm-ups. Nor Cal really made a good show with hometown athletes taking over 25 golds, and better than 50 podiums for the week. As for me...well, let's use my race performance as an affirmation that one should really train for an event of this stature! You can look at my 'performance mgmt chart' below to see that the last couple of months have not been very productive on the training side. Being ever optimistic i still set goals for the events that I thought would put me in the mix for a top 5 result. My goals: 1:10 kilo, 3:40 3k, sub 12s 200m, and 25 points in the points race. My performances...1:14.9 kilo, 3:56 3k, 12.4s 200m, and a DNP in the points race (with 2 points). Overall fairly mediocre (best place 11th in 3k pursuit). On the plus side i really enjoyed the atmosphere, saw a few friends from long ago, and got to play 'bike racer' for the week. It also affirmed that I need to focus my training a bit more and get out of my 'pack fill' slump. So, as i look to cyclocross and 2009's race season, i feel a renewed sense of desire and purpose to train hard, race smart and get some flipping results! ok, enough speech'n