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Thursday, February 22, 2007

more cheap randoms ...

because, amigos, i burned half a workday drooling over that gawdamn ToC coverage and i need to keep this job until that pole-dancing gig starts paying big:

  1. Michael Barry ... i know, he's kinda got that nerdy, nice canuck thing goin' on ~ but, hell ... i think he's pretty damn cool about bike racing. Check his scribbles on the dreaded VsNooze.

  2. BJM made it over Sierra close ... Brenty was up there and said our boy gave him the "oh shit" face but still looked strong cresting the beast. And, he was with some of the best. I mean, when Basso is making the "oh face" at the front ... you know that meter is pegged, yo.

    But that f'ing 1 minute chase group POUNDED it, man. They just pounded it. CVC, TMobile, Leekygas ... those fukkers were drilling it and the BJM group never made the gap.

    ah well ... this is the show. ToC has arrived. And Ben's team has a taste of the limelight and something to toss at the sponsors with that Prologue. But, you get hungry when that shit wets your tongue.

    go get it, brudda.

  3. Rain and muck and wind for todays long slog. Disco lost Davis to the time cut yesterday. Honestly, I don't think they'll have the horsepower to hold it together today. But, they'll have Credit Agricole and TMobile looking for field sprints (as well as CVC) ... so, they'll get help.

    And it seems you can't keep that bloody Slipstream team off the front. Stupid, but strong. And they are getting TV time. So ... stupid like the fox, eh eggbert Vaughters?

  4. Williams Wheels ... holey crap. Last week they sent me a set of wheels to test. They are the fancy-as-shit 19's and ... I'm gonna gush all over them in a later, more thorough review. What a bloody difference a 1405g set of wheels makes. And, hope they don't read this part, but I bashed the crap out of those things last weekend. I abused them like you wouldn't believe in that Dinbua crit ... carving hard through every rutted corner, pushing the wheels' lateral stiffness and durability to the limit.

    I was very, very impressed. Didn't touch them out of the box, and straight as an arrow after all that poundage.

    As some of you might know, I'm a locals only kinda guy. I ride local frame builders stuff, support local race scenes, highlight the locals as much as i can on, etc. Well, what I'm impressed with in Williams Cycling is that they are huge supporters of the local racing/riding scene. They provide neutral wheel support at races and really reach out to provide excellent customer service to folks who buy their stuff.

    mas later as I see how the wheels perform during Smelling.

  5. Dinuba/Cantua/Pine Flat race reports going up (and all the smack talk relevant to each) as soon as I clean some work of the desk.

    I promise, promise that i won't be looking at that live coverage today.

    ... yeah, right.


trac said...

CVC was dirlling it at the front of the ToC???

... CSC??

Anonymous said...

today is a brutal stage in a sense...wet and long

i expect many attacks today

disco's been working hard for the last two days and I saw Tony worn out yesterday on Sierra, they've lost Alan Davis coz he didn't make the cut off time

this could be a quick step day for Bettini - he could sneak into a break to the finish

KOM is tied between SlipStream and QuickStep...let's see who gets it today

the best team I can see winning possibly for the third time in a row is CSC, they were laying low and haven't done too much work except for Jens

Haedo, Jens and today could be Julich? that would be cool - CSC may have a good tactic under their sleeves for today and close it out in the time trial...

can't more hour before the start at Sea Side...

Olaf Vanderhoot said...

CVC ... bwaahahahahaa

those boys are fit!

(you saying i should spend more than 3 minutes typing per post, TracTrac?)

Ippoc Amic said...

CVC? - OV are you making a mean joke here?

1405g vs. say a 1600g wheel set?

you pole dance too?

Olaf Vanderhoot said...

CVC are my favorite bunch of hicks to make fun of... ;)

I'm usually riding the 2000+g wheelset ... so jumping on a superstiff 1405g set was ... well, fantastic to be honest.

I'm a guy who prefers performance and durability over simply what weighs less. As far as performance goes, that wheelset was frickin' amazing. The acceleration is superb, but more importantly in my book - the cornering and braking was top notch.

I had complete confidence in the wheels ... and that will get me in more winning positions than pure weight, every time.

Only time will tell about the durability ... but, like i said, straight as an arrow after 4 very aggressive races in 3 days down in the central valley's rutted pavements and never-ending cattleguards.

PAB said...

yes yes, local framebuilders are the best!!

i hope the norcal masters know what they are in for now that you are on some good wheels. heh heh....


my expert analysis of the TOC: CSC is in the sweetest spot. They have three guys who can ride a good TT all within a half minute of the lead (VandeVelde, Voigt, Jullich).

Today has got to be a tough one. A little wet, with cross/head wind all day long.

Echelons happen...


Oh, and today is EXACTLY why the TOC goes nowhere near the Sierras. Heavy snow at our house (3800ft)and I suspect it is sticking to the roads much lower than this. Rollers for me and migo today....

Brent Chapman said...

Brenty was as the KOM yesterday but mind was blown from the climb and the cold.
Seemed like Ben was further up on Bassos group. I need to read his comments...

Anonymous said...

It's snowing right now (2100ft)

jeninsb said...

looks like we might get something done today

weather's flickin' the vid

PAB said...

actually, if i recall, the vid feed was spotty last year, and that was in good weather.

yes, time to go do whatever it is i do....

marscat said...

ippoc made the coverage yesterday cuz she let the VS cameraman stand in her truck...

shawndoggy said...

Those wheels look like they're made from readily available components, which is nice if you break a spoke in the outback. But it also means that your local wheelbuilder could build you up the same thing (IRD Niobium 19 rims, tiawanese hubs, bladed spokes, alloy nips) without the stickers and fancy website for about the same price (or maybe less). This guy can clearly get you into the 1300g range for about the same amount of $$$... but he's not local and his website ain't nearly as pretty.

No knock on Williams -- just saying that the only thing truly unique about the wheels is the marketing.

PAB said...

SD--bad link.

the thing that is setting Williams apart, in my opinion, (Neuvation has been marketing similar wheels for a few years now, there are probably others) is that he is at the races, supporting racing.

for a small company, that is a huge bit of commitment.

he is out there earning support from the racing community the hard way.

Anonymous said...

suffer fest before Big Sur, 18km and there was about half a dozen of them has go to stick...

disco working hard covering all those attacks...and there's 195km more to go...ouch!

nosajpalnud said...

"Sorry folks, but the rain today is limiting satelite availaibility...."

ah bummer

Anonymous said...

CVC @ the ToC..........even I got a laugh off of that one.

Time for Sushi, Be back after.


shawndoggy said...

yeah, stupid blogger html tagging... (Mike Garcia)

Pab, like I said, I don't mean to knock Williams at all. Supporting local racing is mucho cool. And the wheels are certainly compare favorably to more expensive Campy, Shimano, and Mavic offerings. Just trying to point out that they're really just a "handbuilt" put together with readily available parts (and that's a good thing in my book!).

BTW, pretty sure Neuvation's longer running line of wheels is more like the Performance Titan wheelset (which is like 400+g (that's a POUND for us 'mericans) heavier than the Williams set.

Nome Agusta said...

I tried a set, used them at Paskenta.

I likey, I think Mikey likey too.

Lateral stiffness comparable to Campy Eurus wheels. That's pretty friggin stiff!

KW = Very likable and very into making the best product he can. I see a good future for his company. He has the right attitude.

Olaf Vanderhoot said...

"just a handbuilt" wheelset ...

oh, shawndawggy - you as much as anyone should know there is a HUGE difference between one wheel builder and another.

especially the lighter you go with components.

I'll spare folks with tales of all the wheels i've destroyed that were cheap buys and built up by lesser skilled hands.

jeninsb said...

vid's up, sorta.

beyewtiful shots of the coast

shawndoggy said...


I'm NOT SAYING that there's not a difference between builders. And neither is Williams -- Williams wheels are marketed as if they are some sort of unique "wheel system", not on the strength of the build with commonly available components. I'm just pointing out that Williams' wheels aren't unique (aside from the marketing) and that you can get similar/identical or even lighter wheels from other qualified, respected sources for the same price or less, and perhaps cusomized to your particular taste (rim color, spoke choice, nip composition and color, etc).

What's the difference between Williams and those (equally qualified) wheelbuilders who use the same components to build similar wheels? Marketing. Banner ads on Vnews. Which is all good, but it is what it is.

Take, as an analogy ConAgra's recent recall of peanut butter, marketed under the Great Value (i.e. WalMart generic) and Peter Pan labels. Same stuff, different marketing. Which is "better"? Well duh, Peter Pan of course... there's a cartoon guy on the stuff!

Olaf Vanderhoot said...

sometimes you're just a silly lawyer.

but gawd, i love ya.

Cal Giant Cycling said...

CSC all the way to the BANK!!! Must be the cool Team Car they have!!!

Nome Agusta said...

Shawn, your point is valid but has limitations.
Are the parts readily available to any one who wants to put up the mula to place an order? Yes.
But it's not about the parts, it's about which parts and how they are speced out with the rest of the pieces.
It's about the fact that KW listened to every nit picky thing I had to say soaked it up and is using it to make a better product. As PAB said, I one of those difficult kind of customers that demands perfection. I don't give out shallow compliments.
I am the Simon Cowell of bike parts, a company's nightmare if they choose not to improve, and a blessing if they want to be the best. Keith chose the high road and used my input to make the next generation of wheel even better.
Trust me, the 07 System 30s are going to not only be bomb proof, but they will roll smoother than butter.

Dr. X said...

wheels are the big round parts, right? anyone watchin lil Lukey Euser in the break! damn, gotta meeting.

Nick said...

Keith is a sponsor of our team for 2007 and he gave me a set of 30X to use for CX to see how they would hold up. I raced a total of 12? "A" races and never had any problems with them. The bearings roll so smooth you'd wonder if there were bearings in there at all. Much better than the Mavic Cosmic Elites I was using, and lighter!

Keiths whole thing is quality product straight to the consumer which lowers the cost, and he is an ex racer and wants to help and be involved. He drove all the way down from stockton to come to our first team meeting (in SF)of the year and gave us a great presentaion on his wheels and the new carbon wheels are the bomb! Mikey you'll likey!!!

Chico Cyclist said...

You know, I dig this buying local stuff. Never thought too much about it, but it is kinda cool. I've heard nothing but killer things about those Williams wheels. Haven't tried 'em yet. Hmmmm.....I Specialized considered a local company???