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Monday, April 02, 2007

monday morning rambling randoms

800 miles of driving this weekend.

we pretty much hate being in the car right now.
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Ojai puts on one heckuva good show. This was our first trip down there and i was very, very impressed. The logistics are top-notch ... a gaggle of volunteers who are right pleased to see you in their town, an easy-clean reg and prize pick up area, excellent course marshalling, and a smoothly run ship, all around.

Great event.

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Dave Towle really is the voice of American Cycling.

Yeah, part of it is that he is so intimately familiar with the pro peloton, for the both the men and the women. He can spot and identify the swaying shoulders of Webcor's Curi or the low-hunched drive of Successful Living's Gunn at 200meters, before most DS's can. And he blends sharp knowledge of cycling with a fun and open vibe while announcing. What it does is please the afficianados, who can sit back and smile at his intelligent commentary, while also making the sport accessible and enjoyable to the walk-by spectators of the venue who might not otherwise stop and be interested in the 'bunch of spandexed bikers clogging up the downtown.'

But more than just the pro peloton ... for those of us who usually arrive early and stay late to the races ... we see that Dave announces with equal passion and commitment to ALL the day's categories. He shouts out names of cat 5's and 50+'ers, he explains race situations to families of amateurs so they become more excited for their loved ones races, and always gives up laughs with his colorful play-by-play.

He gives races atmosphere.
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VanGilder the bodybuilder nabbed some nice cashola this weekend by winning both the money crit in Indio and the NRC Ojai event. Cheerwine was very active at Ojai ~ i think Ruiter was the one doing most the damage ... putting the entire field on the defensive with her attacks and covers of moves. Van Gilder just swept it up at the end like any good finisher should.

Brooke Miller got 2nd at Indio, but was surprised when Van Gilder jumped away at 300+meters to the line. Flat out, TIBCO needs a veteran sprinter to guide Miller in those final laps. It wastes too much energy trying to solo it through the pack all the time, fighting for position. Sometimes, you just need a wheel to plant yourself on ... knowing that she will put you in the right spot and protect you from wind ... allowing you to save up all your concentration and strength on that final sprint.

TIBCO doesn't have that right now for Miller. They need to dig somebody up for the job.

Touchstone's Borowski is nutz. Certifiable. She snapped her collarbone at Merco ... what? 4 weeks ago? And now she was racing at Ojai in an NRC crit.

kryst ... i don't know that kind of tough.

Touchstone's Jill McLaughlin is making strides. She was top 15 at Ojai ... but, more importantly ~ was looking like she's getting more top-end speed. And, honestly, that is the only thing she has been missing in her arsenal, in my opinion. She's got endurance and incredible steady-state climbing power ... but, you've got to be able to pull out the knife and cut viciously in this game. You've got to be able to go ballistic.

she's getting there.
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Johnny "Boots" Eropkin won in style in the men's 2 race. He finally found himself some patience and waited, waited until the last couple laps and then whooped them boys something fierce.

Let's just say ... it was very satisfying to see him enjoy those final hundred meters.

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Gawdamn Mark Noble stomped me in the geezer sprint. But, that's ok ... cuz i cashed in on all the primes and took home $160 to his $125. So, bleh on him. Besides, that's his race. I was on foreign territory and he had to protect the local's lore.

And his boy, Chance looks like he's finding some spark again after one hell of a long season last year. Chance rode mtb, road, AND cross at the International level ... while still doing the whole 'young-man' thing with school and developing and learning about who he is in life.

The guy is on his way to becoming one of the good ones. It's really good to see.

He attacked the crap out of that Cat 3 field and about stole the show. I like the way he rolls.

yeah, winning is great and you don't turn your nose at it ... but, it's the ride that keeps you coming back.

and i want to be thought of ... not for my wins, but for how i rode.

with passion.
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L. Christmas said...

I go down to that race cuz Ojai's my bro's hometown.. and it IS my favortie race.
Great to see you & Sabine down there! I had fun trying to hang-on to that geezer race as long as I could! Man you guys are fast! Way to grab all the primes..

Towle has a man-crush on you :-)
(but well deserved the way you've been racing this year)

Seriously, there's nothing more fun listening to him announce your races. "1TOGO!1TOGO!1TOGO!1TOGO!!!!"


Marco Fanelli said...

OV, you rode great yesterday ...quit being so dang modest about it! I knew what was coming in that 35+ race--would have bet my house on it--yet was still unable to respond. In the P/1 race, you looked completely comfortable whereas many of those "pro" guys were really suffering. Nice work. Between the two races, you rode more laps than anyone out there. Please admit to being tired!

dr-nitro said...

Sounds like your getting soft, giving it up so someone can win on his home turf. It does sound like a fun course, though. And I heard the the p1 race was wicked fast, so you are certainly firing on all pistons.

Olaf Vanderhoot said...

Lloyd - good seeing you out there, man. and obviously, it's me the one who has the man crush on Towley.

but he hangs around all those pro-hottie women ... so, i've no chance.
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Fanelli - thanks man, but i really blew the pooch in those final laps. after all those times i wanted to attack and get some prime glory and go off the front a bit ... just to save it up to take a dig at a mediocre result.

all for nothing because you crushed my legs in that stupid f'ing geezer race, gawdammit!
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DocNitro - shit, i didn't give nothing to that limey bugger. he took it from me and didn't even use any lube.


and, the prosey crit wasn't that fast. i paid a good number of those shitters off to keep it slow for me to survive.