Friday, October 31, 2008

birthday time

Im in Sydney for a work conference (mmmm not so exciting at times) and we came up early to celebrate my birthday. The weather was no so crash hot on arrival with rain combined with humid heat. We toured the town a bit and hit a restraunt later that night that Tam had found for a birthday dinner. It was a fantatic meal in an impressive venue that was combined with good company and great wine. Yesterday we headed out to Taronga Zoo and checked out the wildlife (man the snakes were on the go in the reptile exhibit and I was glad we were parted by glass) and the view which was awesome. The view whilst on the ferry was second to none.

We went to the welcoming cocktail party at the conference venue where I discovered some local boutique brew called Red Oak which was way better than the generic ale floating around. It was the usual talking crap with the industry reps who either have equipment in our unit or want it in there. From there we headed out for a meal and then kicked on to a bar or some more drinks.
Today was slow attending the various trade displays and presentation's on the latest ICU treatments.
Looking forward to a open bar session tonight at a local bar presented by one of airway support supply companies, so it could be a rather large evening.
I am looking forward to getting home and getting back out on the bikes and getting organised for next weekend!
Thanks to all that sent me birthday wishes.

Some of the opening night freaky shit.... a red back spider, I think!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

in the box

Yesterday NZ Gav and I checked out the Surfcoast 6hour race. The reason was to get in some fun racing and test the legs. Gav had a brillant ride and finshed high up in about 23rd place (bloody awesome on a single speed rigid 29er) unlike me who was in the 60's. I had a shocker. I could give way to many excuses (too much work this week, the heat, too big gear, soft in the head, dehydration, bad nutritional plan - none!), in the end it was not my day. I had a few issues to say the least and will have to work at ironing them out before the Gravity 12 hour. Some were body related and some where minor mechanical issues.

Me looking a little over it and a little larger than life!

Gav giving it a little nudge and enjoying himself

I have a plan for a bit of a epic ride the day after the Gravity if the body feels OK and the weather aint too shitty to be up on the Bogong High Plain. More on this later!
I have just crept in after a roll home from work which was bloody hot at 30 degrees and gave me flash backs to yesterday in dusty single track, sweaty and gasping for breath. But I feel all the better for the pedal home and will keep the legs ticking over till I come right in a day or two.
Happy trails

Friday, October 24, 2008


This morning I caught up with the man of the hour Simon Gerrans for a bit of breakfast and shooting the shit. He is wrapped to be at home and putting up the legs and having a bit of down time before getting back into training. He has said he has confirmed his signing with a new team for next year. He is off to the Cervelo Test Team and will remain in good old Monarco. He was looking fit and still cruising in his Credit Agricole kit. Great to catch up and have a bit of great breakfast down at APTE (A place to eat) in Alphington.
Other news to hand is that Richie England has signed with Amore e Vita which is fantastic for him to get some hunger again for racing and results and prove himself in Europe. Best of luck for him in tomorrows Melburn to Warnie which should be a bit of a smash festival. One of the longest races in the world at just under 300km.
Me, well a quiet week with alot of work and little bike time. Got out on Monday and commuted to work. Will get out later today after a bit of garden time. Have to get the bike sorted for the Surfcoast 6 hour tomorrow which I am really looking forward to. NZ Gav is joining me in the 3 hour race which will be good prep for the upcoming Gravity race in November. Post this race we are going to try and check out a ride up at Falls Creek that has been suggested to us by a friend. Should be great if it comes together.
Happy trails

Monday, October 20, 2008

these don't mix well

So much for dividing a road into specific lanes. Nothing pisses me off more than people trying to use a bike lane to there advantage when they are in a car or on a motorcycle. On the way home today from work whilst cruising through school mum traffic in East Ivanhoe a tool on a motor bike pops in the bike lane, chopping my line to try and get the jump in the traffic. He was slowing me down so when I pull up next to him and gave him the "what the fuck are you doing speech" as we rolled along in the bike lane, he looked a little perplexed. I gladly flipped him the bird and told him to fuck off and eat some dick!
I am all for sharing the road but stay out of a defined lane meant for cyclists! Given the last 24hrs on the roads of Melburn is it any wonder that cyclists are seriously injury or killed.
I have been sneaking in the km's and got a decent ride in through Research and Kangaroo Ground yesterday which gave me some nice hill time with no traffic lights. So fingers crossed that I end up with some good legs for Saturday at the Surfcoast 6hr.
Happy rolling!

Friday, October 17, 2008

friday again, its going quick for some!

Been a busy week, but it has only started for me with work right through till next weekend. Heading tomorrow up the Nongs early with my old mate Huzza. Haven't been up the Nongs in a while and I am sure the legs and lungs will complain, but life could be worse I could be a Wall Street banker!

seems like some are looking above for inspiration!

On high rotation today is the latest offerings from the Thievery Corporation , check em out!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Finially got the body to reset itself after my night shift stint. This has been hard this time but at least it has come back together. After some house maintenece (putting in roof insulation.... not easy when you are my size) yesterday I managed to squeeze in a quick ride before heading out for dinner. Did a nice loop down through the local trail towards Warrandyte and headed down to the river along some special trails with nice stairs and narrow bridges. Spied a massive Echinda which was not to keen on my presence and soon buried itself.

The above picture is for the northern hemisphere readers who have no idea what the hell a Echidna would be! They are elusive and harmless.

The bike was almost running perfect after its quick pull down, clean and grease up. The new Conti 2.2 Mountain King's are great tyres, hooking up when they are needed and they roll pretty darn well. I am still trying to get the right pressure as the bag of the tyre is pretty small in comparioson to other tyres I have run, and you can feel it crab under you on certain trail conditions. The bottom bracket noise is gone thanks to me servicing the pedals and a new bottom bracket, and I was impressed to say that I had no trouble pushing a bigger gear yesterday around the trails.
Today is core strength day and then off to work for a bit of OT to pay for Big-Mak Canada 09. More on this later!
Happy riding!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

back in the saddle

So the weekend has come and gone. It started yesterday with a bit of pain for me and what should have been a nice easy post nights recovery ride with Jase from Epix . Well after about 10 mins my body was not agreeing with the gentle pace and the bottom bracket on the Gorilla was screaming for attention. Now I put it away last weekend with out any noise. Got it out yesterday with it screaming for some love. It turned out that one of the cups had shat itself. So after a bit of mucking around post ride it has been changed and I am back on the hollow tech cranks as the White Industries have done their time.
So after cutting the ride short cause I was feeling like I was ready to hurl and felt like I had a nasty post night shift hangover. We headed straight to the bakery for a brew and a muffin. We headed back over the 4th hill and then on a descent I scored a flat... not my day.
Today I headed out with the Bundy bunch which heads out North from Melburn and up the Humevale climb towards Kinglake West. It was a good pace just what the legs needed with a little over 70km's covered. The bunch had a couple of hubbard's in it..... full of useless recommendations and glad to share their small mindedness, not to mention their snot as Jase will tell you. One guy was lucky not to get a bottle in the back of the head.
A young rider new to the sport overlapped a wheel and had it connect with the rider in front. Next thing he did a 90 degree turn in the bunch and somehow kept it up. It was a sphincter tightening thing to see when you are only 2 wheels behind. The rest of the ride was without incident and you barely needed to touch the pedals on the way home. Today the post ride has been spent chillin out with a bit of vegie patch building, and watching the Sun Tour on TV.

Friday, October 10, 2008

check it

found this gem whilst sucking on a brew and surfn the net recovering from my week of night shift.... damn cool clip

Danny Macaskill : Next level street trials from brainchild-films on Vimeo.

Big weekend planned with some serious km's on Sunday.... time to get the ball rolling!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

New rubber

Got some new hoop coverings from Continental via Bike29 in the US. Mountain King 2.2's which look all mean but appear narrower than the described width. Will post more when I have given them a flogging.

Oh and I got a YAWD cap which is mighty cool and I can now store my brew tops whilst pedaling!

Monday, October 6, 2008


Happy Monday

Found the Yowie results posted on the net. The GMBC server has been down and been frustrating the shitter out of me. I ended up mid field in 27th out of 50 odd riders. Not to bad.... plenty of room for improvement!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

done and dusted

Woke yesterday to what looked like it could be a good day. Plenty of rain had fallen overnight and i was sceptical to what might lay ahead at the Yowie race. It was a early start and the car was packed and ready to go. I new Jason would crack when he saw the car with the bike on it and the boot open with all my gear packed in it on his way to work.
Drove down and had a perfect run and got to the Stockyards with plenty of time to spare for a warm up and pre race preparation. Worked out where to pick up my number from and then realised my licence was sitting next to the computer at home. After copping a spray from the person handing out the licences (I am a nice bloke but don't poke the bear! I informed him that I had been pedalling a bike and done the whole licence thing long before it became the new golf, probably where he entered the sport sure anybody is entitled to a mistake and I did offer to pay for a day licence).
Spotted the Baum tent and checked out there single speed 26er that looked all good but there is a greyness around the Baum product (I checked the website when I got home) especially when they have removed the price list off their website due to the financial crisis. You build frames not retirement plans!
Got the kit on and did a roll around to check that the bike was all good. Spotted by some guy who was parked close by said "you are mad doing this single speed" and I replied with "man got the bike here and the derailleur broke so I had no choice!".
Anyway lined up for the start and decided it might be easier to do it from the back cause the first km was on fire trail into a hill and I didn't want to smash it and run out of steam. This was mistake number 1.
So off we went post count down and looking at the 99 and 66 km groups in front I realised that I was at the back of 100 + riders. As we snaked our way along the fire trail there were a couple of falls with people getting tangled together and one rider over shot the corner with no brakes (pity the fool with some of the trails ahead). As we moved to the hill I saw that mistake number 1 was leading to a frustrating effort of passing riders in their granny gears. As they were spread all over the trail I was having to smash it to get around them as they swerved all over the trail. Then the fun started with one guy going down in front of me straight in to the bushes. Me on the other jumped off and stepped over him and decided to run, passing other riders as I went it on foot. Other riders fell as I headed up the trail and I felt like I was dodging falling chunks of space rock. I couldn't hold the frustration and let loose with "get the fuck off your bikes and run cause it is faster and easier than smashing the granny gear".
As I crested the top of the climb I got back on and was greeted with the clogging of the single track entry. The entry and gaggle to get in was busier than Bourke Street Mall in peak hour.
Once making my entry I could see that this descent over some nasty rocks and drops was going to be the end of some of these riders. Sneakers and flat peddles gives me a nervous feeling when following them down a technical descent with large boulder strewn rock gardens. I witnessed a couple of nasty falls one resulting in a broken collar bone (not to mention the familiar sound of air being smacked out of lungs as the body hits the deck). Some of the course was above the ability of some riders judging by the braking and falls and I was glad to get through without getting caught up in falls that I witnessed. The race entry did sell it as a race to suit even the most basic skilled rider - when we entered the downhill trail with rock berms and ladder runs I felt for the inexperienced rider.
Once we had navigated the Stockyards area with a section of new trail that I had no chance of riding we headed over to the plantation side which was fantastic and flowing with some cool berms. I even rode the massive ladder bridge much to the horror of the rider below me. As we navigated the plantation I was able to pick up a few riders and breeze past them. The last section of the course was fire road leading to a large climb. I was passed on the fire road but caught most who passed me on the climb. I was glad to get to the end after the last section of single track. From there it was a short put back up the fire trail and into the finish area.
On the whole it was a great course but the 33km was enough for me. Geelong put on a decent race but there was no coffee cart (I missed my morning heart start) or food vendor that I saw, it was promised in the race website. There was a guy selling helium for your bike tyres....mmmm don't really understand that!
I didn't hang around at the end for long and packed up my gear and got on the road. I dont yet know where I finished (the GMBC website is down at the moment), but it was more about getting the body used to racing again. I reckon I will do it again next year as it was a fun course. I will post a result when I find it out.
Happy trails!

Friday, October 3, 2008


Ok all ready for tomorrow. Bike is just on ready and the car is packed. Got a early start and a hunch it might be a bit on the wet side if this afternoon's downpours are anything to go by. Looking forward to the Yowie and giving it a dig..... should be interesting.
A package arrived today and like everyone I love packages in the mail. It was my stuff from Twin 6 which I was glad to see cause I needed some new socks and I had to get a Deluxe Jersey. Ordered last week and here this week from the US. Cant complain cause I have had stuff on back order through the Australian distributor and still no joy after a couple of months..... makes me think that I will only order direct.

Wool at the right length and the right colour!

Hit the local system last night with NZ Gav and took him through some local trails that well, shouldn't be ridden but when they are primed for big wheels who can refuse a tipple on them. Invited Jason from Epix but he had other ideas with skinny tires and the Tour of the Burbs. We had some of the best riding in a long time and with smiles from ear to ear and the weather was spot on at 23 C and no wind. Even cracked a couple of cold brews once home.
The legs and lungs enjoyed working together so I am hoping they agree to work together tomorrow!
Happy trails!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

my precious

I want one! Shame the Specialized Bike Co are not bringing them into the country this year.....

all systems go

OK the 12 hr Gravity team has been set up so I guess I better get the shit together and get the bike fitness on form. Dont know the name of the team but I am in a 4 man, so should be a nice pace. Hey its a weekend away and I have a idea of a trail to explore the day after before heading home, not to mention a brew stop along the way.
Yowie this weekend so I will get out tomorrow to make sure the Gorrilla is set up to go. Think I will stick with the 32/19 combo cause it will give me some joy on the hills. Got some product coming from the US to spice up the rubber and the sock collection. Should be here next week.
My daily commute continues.... spring is here and weather is fine but the Magpies are back in force and I have had some taps on the helmet all ready. I was washed out by the rain on Monday but did it yesterday and pushed down the local bike path on the way home so I could grab a coffee and avoid the traffic. Its nice tapping out a gentle tempo and rolling along. But fuk me the bike paths are a dodgy find cause pedestrians, dogs and little kids with bikes is a nightmare, and not to mention that the extension of the trail to near where I live was built by a non bike rider (thing has some nasty grades with sharp corners and some of the surfaces will be interesting come next winter).
Gerro is home in a week or two so I am sure it will down the beach for some riding and catching up.
Happy trails