Oh. Whoa. It's here! Cross is upon us full stop here in Colorado. Already some 4 weekends in, it's on like Donkey King as our bud Dave Towle rips over the mic. For me...tranquility. Injuries are a distant memory and I am just melting into the season slowly and progressively. Pete Webber is keeping my body and mind moving forward with incredibly fun training and yet again I am back again to try and be the best that I possibly can in this life and in the sport that I bleed for.
The Boulder Cycle Sport Ambassadors Team is back and in effect. More on this as we get into the meat of our season. We've graduated Allen to his first pro contract with Raleigh-Clement, and have taken on a new Boulder transplant and all around good guy, Russ Stevenson. So stoked to have him and his knowledge on the team.
Now...let's nerd-out: The bikes. Oh yes. BCS riders have embraced bear hugged the disc movement with Ridley's newest 2013 X-Fire Disc. I'll do a dedicated post on the details but let's just say: I get it. Yes, the weight needs to come down and it will. But it is exactly like the moment we made the leap from V-brakes to discs in the early 2000's en masse and people simply could not believe why they waited. The one finger speed shaving let's my hand stay in a natural position in lieu of trying to gobble the levers with multiple fingers. The modulation of the Avid BB7's is extremely smooth. None of the ON / OFF syndrome people feared with discs on a rigid carbon fork and skinny knobbies. They modulate smoothly and totally predictably. I am praying for the rain gods to piss on us and turn the earth to shit.
Below is bike one in the stand with a set of training wheels on (and that is yet another discussion...as these are tubeless and are incredible). Oh, and yes, did you catch that? That's two maddeningly hypocritical statements of mine so I'm eating my hat. I'd said 'NO' to discs in a Mountain Bike article some years ago and anyone who knows me knows how I've thrown tubeless under the bus. They are not tubulars, no. But the combo of Clement and Stans Iron Cross rims feels...well, solid. A bit wide (35+ mm) but fun and cushy. And thus far, the bead is sick. Pas des burps.
So while all this bike building, rehabbing and working is going down, other good stuff is happening. Got to spend time with US Pro Challenge stage winner Rory Sutherland who manned the taps at Rocky Mounts with Timmy Duggan. Love these guys. Rory sought me out to do what he can to help mentor and work with our Juniors on BJC. He and Timmy did an awesome Q & A and we are indebted...
Now to the best stuff of all....the racing and my sons' involvement this year. It is HAPPENING! I wish for anyone to have the experience of their kids falling in love with a sport. God knows I've intentionally stayed out of the way, pushing the sons into just about anything else but they keep gravitating back to the bikes. My oldest in particular is finding his stride. Completely falling in love and enjoying his little grommet racer friends who like good little nerdlings wax poetic on Sven Nys, Ridley bikes and how Sagan should ride cross again. It's EPIC as all the kids say now...
And yes, the kid is as fast as he looks (ed. - proud father moment no. 1)
And Cat 4's...take note. Daddy's been working on za form this summer. Double hup. His little brother may even be slightly smoother... (ed. - proud father moment no. 2)
Oh, yeah...almost forgot. I got a couple of races under my belt. 7th and 13th. No real goals yet as I am still sort of ratcheting up and using these races to train, rail and learn the new equipment so we'll see where my season will take me. But I will tell you honestly that as I am racing, I am thinking less of my game, and thinking things like: "Oh, snap! This corner is tricky, I gotta tell Aiden and Seamus about that so they don't yard sale it." It's crazy...and I love it. Maybe I am growing up....
Someone in the family's got to 'represent! And Aiden is having so much fun shredding it's contagious. His little BJC buds are on a tear this early season. Aiden constantly is saying (no embellishment): "Mom....dad: I think 'cross has changed my life."
So much so, that notes like this are left for mom and dad. And no, the kid hates sitting still so for him to do this is a pretty big deal.
My season is here again. Our season is here. Our season of changing leaves, of achieving balance, of belief that I can go fast and my sons will too. Of flowing with our friends, of making it happen.
See you next weekend. Always.