After a season of setbacks, Jonathan Page did the unimaginable by becoming the first American pro cyclocrosser to finish on the podium at the World Championships. Starting in the fourth row back, he slowly worked his way through the field. In fact, he did not even realize that mid-way through the race he was in the lead; cyclocross is so hectic and the crowd noise was so loud that he was not able to tell where he was in the race. In the end, reigning World Champ Erwin Vervecken was able to bridge up to Jonathan, and after a nail-biting last lap managed to get a three second gap. An unbelievable result for Jonathan, and we’re very proud that he was able to achieve this historic result on a prototype R3X.
Which of course begs the question: What is an R3X? The answer starts back to 2004, when we began the development of a cross version of the R2.5, specifically for Jonathan, at that time already a multiple US cyclocross champion. Halfway through its development, we decided to change to the R3 platform. Not only did this open up the opportunity to increase the stiffness of the frame and the tire clearance, it also allowed us to construct the world's lightest cyclocross frame while at the same time making it the strongest.
Jonathan Page received the final pre-production frames just two weeks before the 2006 Cyclocross World Championships. He tested them, liked them and rode them to an impressive 10th place finish, the highest finish ever for a US cyclocross rider in a pro world championship. The development of the frame continued based on some of Jonathan's feedback. His season was interrupted by a torn rotator cuff but his incredible ride at the 2007 Worlds proves that both Jonathan and the Cervélo R3 are still on the way up.
There is actually not that much difference between the regular R3 and the R3 Cross, as the road-going version was designed with Paris-Roubaix in mind and is already plenty strong. The biggest difference is in the geometry of the front end (to accommodate the cross fork) and in the seatstays, which require pegs for the cantilever brakes. Though we have not assigned a release date yet for the R3 Cross, if it goes into production you will read about it first here in eNews.
Dirk Friel is an invaluable resource to cycling and to the Rocky Mounts team in particular as a key sponsor of the squad in '07 via his company TrainingPeaks. He will be personally walking us through the software underpinning the TP methodology and sharing his personal experiences with the gods of the sport as his company is now being embraced by major ProTour squads such as Astana. This vid is classic and shows how Dirk is "embedded" with the teams he is instructing the use of the training software on. It goes a LONG way when your coach can keep up with you as a pro rider (Dirk's a fomer pro...but running a business now in TrainingPeaks!) and have him REALLY understand your specific needs.
I posted about this GVA previously (my pics from the post got nuked via the site I referenced them) but came across this little gem set to some Rage. Nice. We're going to get this going on here next year:
This is some old school BMX right here and I am salivating.
Well, we finally got this thing together and launched! Herding kittens through a door simultaneously is a pretty complex endeavor but the team managers and I got the sponsors, kits and everything else lined up and ready for last night's kickoff. We had a great turnout with the majority of the racers and lots of their wives and kids. The agenda was to lay out the ground work for next year in terms o goals which amount to supporting our devo and women's squads who'll be making a run for it and allowing teh men's categories to break up into their groups by various categories (e.g. Cat 35-4's, 4, 3, 2/1 and of course 35 Opens) to allow each to meet new riders and see friends from last year and share a couple of Dales Old Chub's to talk through what their plans are for the upcoming season. Most of us see each other regularly but this winter has put a damper on things! The sponsors play a major role as well to help us out. Lance G (above) and crew from Izze came by to talk about the company and product which is quite an amazing story of how their "Project Reach" is helping build schools where Izze harvests the fruit used in their beverages. Awesome story and proud to have them as a title sponsor.
All-in-all, I was proud to look across the room last night at the wonderful faces and review the rich history of the squadra. We're going to have aboat load of fun this year and we're stoked!
Here's to 07.
We finally got outside as a group today. Good times, good times. 3 hours and rolling hills mixed with flats. Tons of teams out. We had a good showing with lots of new guys. Varying skills which will fall into place so each cat can ride amongst themselves and gel. I wanted to play today and all that weight work and living like a monk has paid off. More is needed. I played mainly to see who would follow of the new guys to get a feel for what we have to work with this year. New guy Dave W, a former pro MTB'er, is an absolute steal. He's got a great attitude and an equally great motor. He played my game. Others a very cool guys, but we'll have to drill them over and over until they get some road etiquette. Their squad leaders will have to work on them.
All in all great to be on the road. Snow's coming again, but hopefully not in the same volume. It's OK, I need to work harder on strength and core so this is all good to me.
Sorry, no pics, Camera's dead.
Mmm. 48 degrees. Yummy. It's Africa hot as far as I am concerned. Did a nice lunchtime roll and hooking up with my team mates FINALLY so we can spin together on our first ride of the season as a group. enough rollers, enough single speed and CX bikes on the sludgy roads and snowy trails (or now) . I am looking forward to spinning long hours on the roadie with good peeps.
My boys at Ritchey gave me the kind hook up to make the roads feel that much better on my Sycip. Jeremy and Jay Sycip built me this ride in 2001 believe it or not and I can't believe how well it's stiiod the test of time. 1000's and 1000's of miles on this.The new Ritchey stuff is like buttah. I am going with the new Streems to see what that is all about. I tend to ride on the tops of teh bars on the road so this is supposed to be more confortable.
The fork replaces a 6 year old LOOK and this is lighter and carbon from drop outs to steerer.
Seatpost bling will keep my heiney well positioned. I will do a complete write up of these after I have some time on the road. I use WCS everywhere so I expect the reviews will be stellar.
Looking forward to the LSD trip.
More fuel for my "Belgium 2008" chant I say to myself silently every AM.
Ives, from Baginton, just failed to make history in the event by becoming the first rider to win six World Masters Cyclo Cross titles.
He was beaten into silver medal position in the 65+ category by old rival and now five times world champion Herman Martens, three years his junior.
Ives had trained very hard to defend his championship and was a clear winner at the recent British Championships, but it is a very different ball game in Belgium, where the cyclo cross is huge and big events often attract 30,000 spectators.
The course at Mol, which Ives has raced ten times, is very fast and mainly single track through pine forests, with 500m of road and three big sand sections, some of which is rideable, the rest has to be run.
Ives has won the title five times, been second twice and third once. He has also been second three times in the UCI World Road Championships and third once in the UCI World Mountain Bike Championships.
MI Racing-EAS-Thule team mate Barrie Mitchell finished eighth in the 60+ category, just three places behind last year's World Champion Vick Barnett.
Barrie's race went exactly as expected and for the first time in five years he managed to get round without any crashes or problems.
He was happy with 8th, although he was only 15 seconds away from 6th place.
"Racing at Mol is very fast and even small time gaps are very hard to close up. Passing is also a problem as a large section of the course through the woods are on single track paths," he said.
"As usual the large sections of sand are a problem to the English riders as we have nothing like this in the UK.
"You can lose big chunks of time each lap if you are unable to ride through the sand sections. Local Belgians are very good at this as many events in Belgium are centred in sandy areas each weekend."
Richard got negged by Rabo this weekend too. They offered him a lower salary and he said take this job and shve it and drive off in his Bog Foot. He's outtie and will be picked up by another squad to try and get revenge on Rabo-Sven.
I had lots to do today. Heavy duty spin and then weights for 3 hours in the AM, kid play all afternoon then unpacking all the boxes from Verge and re-packing into individual bags for all the team-mates today. Thanks to our Devo team for assisting! They basically ran the show! One other thing was to visit BCS and pick up my new Rock Lobster for next season. (Don't ask me why i had it built up. It's sort of like having a bad case of blue balls I suspect. I needed to 'release' and see the thing built up).
It came out sweet. With Mavic Open Pro/Hugi's, a bunch of Ritchey WCS (although I'll have other wheels this coming season to race on) and the Alpha Q, this Easton Ultra Light is 18lbs. Not stupid light (my Scandium RL with the FSA's is 17.3 pounds) but light enough. I am 6'2 and about 180 when I race so I figure I can skip a couple-a Newcastles before I get stupid light equipment.
An interesting twist was related to the Alpha Q. I had this fork on my Scott Team CX this season and while on ,it had a significantly longer steerer. Problem: When you buy and install Alpha Q's, they are essentially on THAT bike for life. Why? You cut the carbon steerer, then permanently glue in this Aluminum shim which holds the star nut in place with the same shit they bond rotor blades of Apache's with. So, I'm thinking I am humped and have to buy a new fork. D-Wayne (THE MAN) at BCS called True Temper directly and got the green light to cut RIGHT through that shit! Good as gold. He cut through the carbon and on through the aluminum shim, pushed down the star nut and voila, correct steerer length for this bike.
I blinged out this bike with some carbon fiber love. Some FSA CX carbon cranks (175 x 110BCD) and a 42t FSA ring. Note the carbon chain guides. Hand made by Joe De Paemelaere of Primus Mootry here in town. Dope. Super stiff.
Lastly, Brandon waranteed a few Fizik Arione saddles for me. The guys at Fizik were cool and swapped out the seats I broke this CX season (2 of 'em). Apparently there was some flaw that cracked right at the flex points directly through the middle of the underside of the saddle....obviously exacerbated by 'cross regardless of how smooth your remounts are. I run 'em on my road bikes and love 'em so I wanted to try for 'cross. C'est la vie. I'm going with 'em again this season.
Finally, to my earlier point, the 07 uni's are in and they are sick. Verge nailed the design spot on.