Saturday, May 30, 2009

Lyons Fat Tire Festival

After hearing about how cool it is for a couple of years now, I finally made it to the Lyons Fat Tire Festival. It helped that the organizer, Redstone Cyclery, is my local GT dealer, so I was able to set up the tent there and turn some people on to the GT Comeback.

It was a record turnout for this little festival, which started nine years ago as a housewarming party for Redstone's owner, Dave Chase. This year, 90 people showed up to ride, party and hang out. I was able to meet a bunch of them, not only at the tent, but on the ride I did, which had 27 people in attendance. Nice!

Like many rides in Colorado, it started up a steep-ass forest service road, that led to yet more steep-ass forest service road.

But like pretty much every ride in Colorado, some sweet, sweet singletrack awaited.

It eventually turns steeply downhill, following a little creek, and gets fabulously rocky and technical. I love that stuff! Naturally, I was having too much fun to stop and shoot any photos during that section, but I got in one last one before the little climb back to the car.

The great thing about representing GT at a little festival like this one is that people are chill and there to have a good time. They're ready to chat and get to know each other and talk shop. They're not all bound up about their preparation and performance like they are at races. I think a number of people had a good impression of the bike and the brand, and that's what I'm here to do. Success!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Battle the Bear

Well, the first race for GT went without a hitch, I am happy to report. The tent went up without any problem and we got in right next to Dan Porter from Fort Collins.

The rad blue artificial turf for our cosy floor looks great, but I'm a bit chafed that the guy put in charge of getting the GT logo on it completely dropped the ball, even though he had almost a month to pull it together. I have to start all over in finding someone to make me a stencil so I can get the logo on there.

The carbon Marathon, dubbed Leonidas (I can't help naming my bikes) got quite a bit of attention. People came by the tent to scope it out, and people talked to me about it while I was warming up. It's a great bike; I'm very pleased with it.

I'm less pleased with my fitness. But I can't help the fact that I have not been training as much as I'd like. My back injury is just not resolving in the manner I had hoped. Seven months in, and I'm still having pain pretty much every day. It's a buzzkill, for sure.
I haven't ridden my mountain bike for 30 miles yet this year, much less raced for that long, so I didn't really expect to do well. Sure enough, I was 4th out of four.

I don't really understand what's going wrong with the women's fields in Colorado lately; it's strange that there's only a handful of women racing in a state where everyone rides a lot.

But regardless of that, I got through my three ten-mile laps with minimal pain and totally dug the course. The bike performed beautifully and I was very happy to be out there.

I hope that by my next race on June 13th that I will have some resolution to my injury.

On a side note, I wish you could see an actual bear at this race. It would certainly make everyone ride faster.
I did, however, see a snake. It was sunning itself on the trail, and since I have a strange attraction to snakes and frogs, I had to stop for a quick second to check it out and shoo it off the trail. It was huge; I think it had no idea its tail end was still hanging out there in the line of fire.
I could have bunny-hopped it, but I'd have felt really bad if I missed.
Just because I was getting slaughtered myself didn't mean I needed to take out another innocent creature. :)

However, I must say that I'm in an insanely fast category right now. The 40+ women were the fastest ones out there. I got some work to do!

Monday, May 04, 2009

At Last!

I apologize for the internet silence here, but Mother Nature has been perversely uncooperative with my need to ride my new bike.

I still can't believe that some people have won races on their bikes and I've just barely now ridden mine. But that's what spring in Colorado is like.

And to be fully honest, I was also waiting on these rad frickin' wheels. It's a match made in heaven!

And then it was time to hit the trail. 

The bike feels good, but I'm considering taking it to Push Industries to have the suspension customized. Seeing as I'm only 120 pounds, those components were not set up with me in mind. The ride's a little harsh right now, but I know with the right tweaking it can be perfection.

The first race of the season is in Denver this weekend. I'm stoked to get GT Central set up with fellow Dirt Coalition riders Joe (Durango) and Dan (Fort Collins). I'm just training through this race, since my back injury is still causing problems, and the fitness I'd hoped to have at this point has yet to materialize. But an MRI later this week will hopefully provide some answers. 

In the meantime, come by the GT tent to scope out the bikes, chat us up, and grab some free Sport Beans!