Archive for November, 2009

Cyclocrosser Shaun Adamson: Looking for Support

Posted in 'Cross, Cycling Bloggers on November 30, 2009 by bikealberta

Provided by Shaun Adamson

In order to help me raise money to fund my 2009 cyclocross campaign, I have a autographed frame pack from United Cycle to give away!

It includes:

* Framed Battle of Alberta picture signed by Sam Gagner and Mikka Kiprusoff (value $210)
* 2 West Edmonton Mall Choice Passes (value $70)
* United Cycle gift card (value $20)

Help me to raise funds for my 2009 cyclocross season, and this awesome package can be yours! All you have to do is fill out this form and correctly answer who is the current Canadian National Cyclocross Champion.

Tickets are $25 each or 5 for $100.

10% of all funds raised will also be donated to my charity of choice, the Stollery Children’s Hospital.

Payment can be made directly by joining the Shaun Adamson Supporters Club or by filling out the form indicating the number of tickets you want and I will send you payment request.
Thanks for all your support!

And a big thanks to United Cycle for the frame pack!

Pedalhead Hockey – A Call for Players

Posted in Bike Clubs, Training on November 29, 2009 by bikealberta

Provided by Pedalhead Cycling Club

Pedalhead Cycling Club has been playing hockey in the off season for the past few years. Think you’ve got the skills to toe-drag stay-at-home d-man Chris Check? Want to see Roddi Lega stickhandle through your entire team? It’s a great way to stay fit and a nice break from the trainer or rollers. We are looking for a few players from the cycling community to add to our games. So, if you want to play just send an email to bikeguy67@hotmail.com We try to get out once per month until March. Beginners are encouraged and welcome to come out. Remember it is full equipment. We try to have 20 skaters + 2 goalies so it’s a fast game.

Once I have your email, I will add you to our players list. You will get a notice one week before the next skate. Please email back to confirm if you are coming out.

ice_hockey_monkey
Pedalhead hockey is back on December 1st @ 10:30 P.M.

Please note the ARENA FOR THE GAME…

We are playing at Donnan Arena

9105 80 Ave.
Edmonton, AB T6E1T4
780-944-7422

We need 20 skaters for a fast game so get your name in soon if you want to play. We also need 2 goalies and they always play for FREE!

Please remember to bring a WHITE jersey and a BLACK or RED jersey. No other colours please.

***NO SLAPSHOTS & NO BODY CONTACT***

Pedalhead hockey is unique in that we encourage beginners to play. If you are just learning or have not played in a while, don’t let that hold you back.

$20 per skater and that includes a beer for the first skate and after that it’s $15 per game. That is to ensure we have enough $$ for beer + games where we don’t get 20 skaters.

We are on the ice at 10:30 P.M. for 1.5 hours.

See you Tuesday night.

Scott O.

Roddi’s best race update ever, long one too. make sure you have time. really.

Posted in Cycling Bloggers, MTB, Racing on November 23, 2009 by bikealberta

Provided by Roddi Lega

For 2010 Roddi has agreed to be a BikeAlberta contributor, sharing his thoughts and experiences racing the Canada Cup circuit. So we though we’d share a little of what it’s like to be entertained by Roddi’s insightful race reports.

This race report goes back a few years, to 2005 I believe.  Enjoy:

Hi there,

I last left off with an update from the first 2 Norbas and that was quite a while ago. It was over 2 months ago actually, and there has been a little racing action going on. Many of you have been telling me that you love my updates more than puppies and kittens, so i figure i will throw down the most exciting race update ever (maybe not, but you will have a better time reading this than if you went to Disneyland, which costs you $100 bucks. You can pay me later).

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The Sea Otter classic was my big race for the month of April. It’s a 4 day stage race in Monteray (san francisco), California. Day 1, Super Cross Country (I don’t know what that is either). Day 2, time trial. Day 3, Short track. Day 4, cross country. Here is a quick day by day report. It went like this, really bad, a little better, even better, best. Once again the race was stacked with talent as some of the worlds best showed up to take part. I won the “B” short track race which is the race for the guys in the bottom half of the field after day 1 and 2, and since on the first day, I lost a lot of time due to my panties catching on my purse, which tangled with my high heels and a huge crash ensued (I just sucked that’s all). It was a tough race and I lost a lot of time that day. For the short track I wanted to show to myself that I didn’t belong in the “B” race, I attacked early and took the lead. It was a huge effort and I was hoping to get as many suffer face pictures as I could for the magazines. I did all but the first lap of it solo and there should be many pictures to come because all of the silly cameramen think it’s the “A” race. So keep your eyes peeled in the magazines. The cross country is always the main event and I had a pretty good day. I felt great during the first half, but got a little carried away a few times on the climbs when I noticed some very strong guys getting dropped while I was pushing the pace at the front of our group. I paid for my manly efforts later and lost a little time in the last few minutes of racing. I ended up 16th on the day and was ahead of many of North Americas best.

By then it was late april and I headed home to edmonton which is where I’ll be all summer. I did plenty of riding at home and found a bunch of new trails that some drastic, (drastic is the new word for extreme, don’t forget it) guh-narly kids have been building. They are getting a little better each year I come home. But there is some questionable trail building out there. The other day I was riding on a trail by downtown where the bums spend their day (this will all make sense later in the story, please, read on), and I went to do a log ride that is about 8 feet above ground. The kids put a board in front of the log that hooks you up so you get a straight line. Well, as I was rolling onto it the board wiggled and fell off the log. I did an amazing drastic gymnastical twisting back flip maneuver and landed on my feet, then I heard a, “sprain ankle sound here”. The american gymnast Kerri Strugg with the sprained ankle in the ’96 Olympics (remember her, she is the one who’s coach carried her off the mat in all her glory), would have been proud of it. Actually, I must say I put her pommel-horse routine to shame. Shame like little kid being sent to her room while stomping their feet. As I lay there in my semi-gay (Not that there is anything wrong with that) gymnast glory, I was unable to get up. It was the same sprained ankle injury that Kerri Strugg had thrashed. Luckily, one of the bums, who was wearing a sweet “8 ball” jacket, saw my stounding mis-hap and came over. He picked me up, and carried me to the safety of his shopping cart. To my amazement, all the other bums had also witnessed the ordeal. The roar they made was deafening, they were jumping, screaming, burping, farting and high fiving each other. Then, to my surprise, they all put up paper plates with “10” written on them in ketchup. It was truly the finest moment of my life. Aaaahhh haaaa, this was all a huge lie just to mess with you. I hope it worked. Anyways, back to some exciting racing stories.

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While I was home I did an Alberta Cup road race. It was in Ardrossan(edmonton) and I figured I might have a shot at the title since I had won it the previous 2 years. Well, I was in for a treat When I showed up and forgot to be fast. Man, did I ever suck. In the end I gave birth to a bouncing 10 pound baby 4th place. Yeah, it was tough but I’m okay with it, since i think road racing is really silly. Silly like a cat playing with a string, or a dog chasing a light that you flash on the ground. Now, I want everyone to know that I didn’t mean to make fun of bums in my story. Ever since I was a little kid I felt horrible for them. I hope no one is offended. But you probably though, what the heck is going on in this story?

Next I was out east in Quebec for the Canada Cups. There was about 5-8 of us traveling together at different times. Apart from the constant smell of poo it was a good fun. This year there is a lot more competition at the Canada Cups. For some reason (cream corn-which means $) all of our top racers are not doing the early season world cups in europe. That means most of them will be coming to the Canada Cup races, which are pretty much labeled as a developmental series. So they were set to be very tough races.

First up was Canada Cup 1 in Bromont, which is about a 1hr drive east of Montreal. I had a cold all week and ate monkey pace amounts of nanners and fruit to try and get my vitamin C. But nope, I was still coughing up fur balls before the race, maybe I should stop cleaning myself with my tongue. I did a couple of laps and stayed in the lead group of 4, then started to fade fast and thought I should save myself for the next race. So I didn’t finish the race. Too bad, I hate quitting.

Now a story about dirty underwear. Where we stayed in bromont it was at a house we rented from a super nice Swiss-German guy named Walt. He rented out the upstairs to us and the downstairs was his house. It had a laundry room and bike stand. We were doing laundry over the week because it was pretty muddy. Well, the last day we were there I did a load of laundry, got dressed with my clean-fresh shorts and headed out for our days humid and sweaty drive to Mt. Tremblent. Then, after we arrived at our place I went to do another load of laundry, so I got undressed and go to throw my sweaty underpants in the wash, and whooaah, size 38″. Wait a minute, I don’t own a pair of size 38″ shorts. What the heck, I’m thinking, then it hit me. eeewwwwwwww! I thought those things felt baggy. Uuuggghh, they were Walts shorts, ugghh. They were pretty gross looking when I looked closer. Crap! Walts pooh shorts I wore. I hope he is a clean guy.

About Canada Cup 2, it was pretty much a running race. Everyone had to run about 10k during it. The mud in quebec is orrible, just orrible. It rained hard all night before the race, and I know from experience that when it rains in Quebec, it’s going to be a running race. The mud there turns into a bog, so you end up sinking deep into it and it takes twice the energy to ride through it than it does to run/trip over my big goe-loshes. I got off to a decent start and was in the front group of 10. Then my first mechanical of the day was a flat tire. Which should be about a 1 minute stop. Well, I broke my CO2 cartridge and ended up taking over 5 minutes. So my race was really done in the first 1%. There was no way I was going to drop out of this one after my quitting the race last weekend. I soldiered on like Keith Richards is with his life, and was feeling pretty good. I actually worked my way back up into about 15th spot. I was enjoying myself and was riding well, tearing down a muddy descent on my Norco hard tail, when the rider in front of me slammed hard. I had nowhere to go and this is a play by play on how it sounded. Weeeeeeeeeeeeee (me having fun)-eeeeeeeeeee (me screaming like a little girl)-klank-klank-klank (me trying to go around him in some big jagged rocks)-kablammo (me hitting his bike)-gggggh-ggggh (the air coming out of my lungs)-plop (my panties getting stained)-hsssssssssssss (another flat tire)-ugh. Since I had only 1 tube and it was already being used I had to do something to continue the race that I refused to quite. So I remembered back when I was a kid and a friend of mine flatted when we were in the middle of nowhere. We filled his tire with woodchips and rode on. It had big lumps in it and wood chips were falling out all over the place. Just thinking about it right now makes me laugh. Back to my story. I started to fill the tire up with mud, wood chips and gravel and was laughing at how my race had been going. I was actually looking forward to riding the mud filled wheel back up to the technical pits just to get a laugh from the thousands of spectators and screaming women, but I never had to. You see, soon after I was filling my tire with mud, a friend came down and gave me his tube and CO2 cartridge. He quit and went for a beavertail (grease and chocolate desert). It was that kind of day.

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I got racing again after fixing it and realized I had broke one of my shifters in the crash. Oh well, it’s just another mechanical, I still wasn’t going to quit. Just like how the amazing Edmonton Oilers never quite, or how Don Cherry never shuts up. I will spare you all more details but I did flat one more time and finished the epic day. It took 3hrs and 10 mins of action, I rolled home in 23rd place out of over 70. This was the longest xc race I have ever done. There are many other long races but an XC race is supposed to be about 2 hrs. Usually you pace yourself for that kind of effort, but this day, most of us had gone out fast like speed racers and came home, beaten and exhausted like a tired, spanked beaver that has it’s leg caught in a trap. I have never seen a, “tired, spanked beaver with it’s leg caught in a trap” but I bet they are pretty darn slow. It was a pretty crazy race huh. It has to get better right? Because I don’t think it can get much worse. I still love to ride my bike. That’s all I need to remember. It’s a kids sport.

After Tremblant we then stayed for a few days at a bed and breakfast that didn’t include breakfast (I think we should sue). it was in Hull, which is the Quebec, french speaking side of Ottawa. I liked it there but the others were a little unimpressed with the dirty underwear hiding under Drews bed and the shower/living room which was crazy because the shower was in the living room. Anyone could take a peek if you were showering. Nuts huh. Aaahh haa.

Then we were on to Barrie, Ontario for the Harwood Hills Canada Cup. On the Saturday was the short track, which is not really a Canada Cup. It’s just a short track race that doesn’t mean much but maybe to make a little money. The course was so much fun. We did about a 30 second climb and then came down a BMX track. There were 2 sets of double jumps that a few of us were airing. I had a great time. A lead group of 5 quickly broke away from the pack with me in it. I sat in the 5th spot and we got a pretty large gap on the rest of the field. Then with 1 lap to go I figured I would go for the
win somehow by staying in 5th and getting dropped. Maybe if I could time it right I could get lapped at just the right time and they might think I won. But nope, I was just a little behind the front 4 and got no love from anyone. Damn it again. Then it was on to the big one, the XC and Canada Cup 3. It was so hot, 33c. I was so hot during the race I felt like Paris Hilton in a steamy-humid bikini shoot, only hotter because I’m really really really good looking. I raced super hard and my legs felt like they were mush. I was suffering and sweating like a fatty in “Sweatin to the oldies with Richard Simmonds”, and came home in the 7th place.

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Next up was National Championships in St. Anne (Quebec City). Dang it’s hot there. It was so hot that we used my baby modeling pictures to start the bar-b-q when we couldn’t find a match. That is pretty darn hot. During the week I stayed at a house with the Alberta team. It was pretty packed with 9 of us. There was not much room with 1 small kitchen but our little junior racer kept cleaning people out with his hideous gas emitions. They were absolutely unbearable. Evan “shermanater” Sherman would get a suffer face like no other when he would catch wind of the mini bomber. Really, how can someone so small make such a massive stink. About the Nationals, this is supposed to be the most important race of the year for me. A great ride at Nationals can automatically get me funding from the government and qualify me for the World Championships team. Alas, it was not to be. I had an okay day but, once again, the legs just didn’t have full gas. It was super hot, like an oven, 350f I think, and I’m sure if you put some spices on me I would have tasted scrumptious. Man was it hot for about the first hour until some clouds rolled in and saved my life. During the first few laps I didn’t think i was going to make it. I stayed with it and rode smooth to finish 6th just one spot off the podium. Spank, it was hot. A 3rd/4th place finish would have put me on the Worlds team. Oh well, I still have a couple more chances. I think everything is slowly coming around. The next bunch of races can only get better. Yeee-haw!

Now I’m back home Edmonton where I’ll spend a week taking it easy and getting ready for the World Cup which is right back in Quebec City. Whew that was a long one. Thank you to Neil, Mark, Pete and the folks at Norco for the support at the races, and congratulations to everyone who was able to read this far. Your hooked on fohn-icks gold medals are in the mail. I hope you enjoyed my update, and remember, when you are doing laundry, make sure no one else’s underwear get mixed in with yours.

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Talk with you all later.

Roddi

Photos by Brad Chisholm

Calgary Information Session: On Street Bicycle Routes

Posted in Bicycle Commuting on November 18, 2009 by bikealberta

Provided by the City of Calgary

The City of Calgary will be hosting an information session on on-street bicycle routes in the Strathcona area November 23 at the Strathcona Community Centre.  The purpose of this session is to share our proposed plans for the Strathcona on-street bicycle routes and to obtain feedback from Calgary cyclists about these routes.
Monday, November 23, 2009
5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Strathcona Community Centre
277 Strathcona Drive S.W.
Strathcona community bicycle route improvements are being proposed along Strathcona Drive S.W. from 69 Street S.W. and around the Strathcona Drive loop (both directions). This will be a joint information session held along with the Strathcona Community Traffic Study.
Please join us!

A Story About La Ruta: From the Handlebars of Cory Wallace

Posted in Cycling Bloggers, MTB, Racing on November 17, 2009 by bikealberta

Provided by www.ctwally.blogspot.com

When it was snowing and minus 10 in Canada La Ruta seemed like a good idea. While pushing my bike through gongshow mud for 1.5 hrs in plus 33 temps with humidity on day 1 with Costa Ricans sprinting pass me I began wondering why I thought this was such a good idea. Racing day 1 of La Ruta with improper training is about as smart as sticking a metal fork in a socket. I like sticking metal things in sockets though especially in Costa Rica. Midway through the day was a tour de france type climb for 22 km over a mtn. Ben Sonntag from Cannondale had some troubles in the mud as well and caught up to me half way up the climb. He probably had the 3rd best legs in the race this yr. I tried to keep up to him for 15 minutes, blew up for the 3rd time on the day, got passed by 4 more riders and was soon pretty much over the race and began looking for ice cream. Half way down the back side decent Rune Hoydahl ripped passed me asking “What are you doing”? “Looking for a ice cream shamefully replied”. He shook his head and continued on his rampant decent. Having a World Cup downhill winner rip past you doesn´t happen often so I put my ice cream aspirations on hold and took to eating his dust. For the last 3 hrs of the day we road togethar. We made good riding partners as we were both suffering hardcore from being 165 lbs riders from snowbound countries trying to keep up to a bunch of freakish mountain goats.

Day 2 is probably steeper then mount everest. I road hard staying in 13th place, just behind the lead group of 12. Decending down the back side of everest I caught up to 3 riders including Bishop who had took a wrong turn. Riding with Bishop we caught up to a Costa Rican taking a feed from his car and holding on for an extra ride. A little after he took some pills from the car. With the race organizers stating that anyone receiveing help outside the feedzones would be disqualified Bishop and I reminded the Tico of this and he had a spaz attack and began riding into Bishop. Bishop told the guy if he ran into him again that they were going to get off there bikes. The next 10 minutes included me being run off the road, having gum spat at us, being called ass holes by 5 guys supporting the rider and finally Bishop sprinting off to get away from the unright Tico. A little after I was gaining on my friend before he took a short cut. At the finish line there was a confrontation as I wanted to jersey the guy but his support crew stepped in and his sister sweet talked me out of it.

Day 3 Bishop ripped over the Volcano with Tinker and would get lost going down the decent and would eventualy finush 10 minutes behind a Tico that knew the way. I spent the day riding in 11th, 15 minutes behind the lead group and 15 minutes ahead of 12th place. On the decent I made it to 8th before losing my back brake and eventually finishing 10th. Decending Costa Rican roads with brakes is sketchier than Guatemalan street food but without brakes its pretty much suicide as dogs, cars, kids, chickens and donkeys are all over the place. At the finish line I talked to Bishop to see how his day was. He responded “Great, I still have control in this uncontrollable environment. I knew coming in that racing down here was full of suprises and I´m just running the course.¨ Pretty solid words to come from a guy who had the legs to win the race but had mechanicals, route finding problems, and ticos trying to fight him.

Day 4 is a day for the diesel engines. With my legs coming around I managed to get over the first two climbs of the day with the leaders and was stoked to get down to the flatlands to give some payback to the climbers for making me suffer for 3 days. Unfortunately my bike self imploded with 2 broken chains, a ripped off front derrailur and a bent rear derrailure. I was soon back in the 40´s riding a 3 speed. I caught riders for a while but then a Tico sped by me motor pacing behind his support vehicle and I got rattled. This wasn´t proper racing so I changed tactics on the day and slowed down to help American Louis Kobin. Louis was in 2nd overall in the womans gc and needed to gain 5 minutes on the Costa Rican that was winning the race. Apparantly the Costa Rican had two male riders helping her and a support scooter throughout the race. After my experiences at La Ruta over 3 yrs I decided it was time for a whitie to get some help and let Kobin draft off me for 80 km to the finish. She suffered hard but won by 23 minutes.

In the end La Ruta is always a great adventure. I will probably be back for more but it will either be as a reporter as an end of season cool down or possibly with a support crew and proper training to try and even a few scores. For now it is off to Panama for spanish school so I can learn new trash talking words.

Will Cyclocross Become the Way of the Hipster?

Posted in 'Cross on November 17, 2009 by bikealberta

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FireWheels: Vote on Bike Plan funding – Edmonton

Posted in Bicycle Commuting on November 13, 2009 by bikealberta

The Transportation and Public Works Committee is voting on the Active Transportation Strategy this Thursday, November 17th.Here is the report: http://ereg2.edmonton.ca/sirepub/cache/2/0tdddp2qbsyr3x45myv31a45/1325711122009114753247.PDF

The bad news: the recommendation is not the $100M ($10M over 10 years) for cycling that we had initially expected. The city may be missing out on a golden opportunity to safe the city money and achieve its goals of having a more active city, less auto-dependent, with a compact urban form.

Funding PR, such as the maps, promotional programs, and such won’t get people cycling: infrastructure investments such as on road lanes for bicycles will. It has been proven in other cities; New York, Toronto, Montreal, Copenhagen, Vancouver. If you want to get people cycling you have to make it safe.

This is the test for Edmonton City Council. Are we serious about cycling and reducing our auto-dependency, or are all of these plans just nice words?

Investing in cycling will require a small sacrifice: that means money not going into some ring roads or overpasses. It might mean a proposal for a few more dollars in taxes. Those are alternatives I’m willing to face if It means traffic reduction, a safer commute for cyclists, and a healthier, more active city.

THE GOOD NEWS: The TPW committee is voting on Thursday and we still have a chance to give our feedback.

Please, call and email your councillors. Let them know the benefits of cycling. Let them know how this is a win-win for everyone in our city.

Take Action:

IF YOU HAVE 10 MINUTES:
Please email your councillors: Councillors@edmonton.ca
– Tell them to fully-fund the original bike plan and the infrastructure as soon as possible
– Tell them when you cycle and why.
– Tell a friend and email them this message.

IF YOU HAVE 30 MINUTES:
– Call your councillors. A phone call means more.
– Write a letter to the Journal: letters@thejournal.canwest.com

IF YOU CAN COME TO THE HEARING:
– Come. Register to speak. Tell them your thoughts and that this money makes a big difference.
– The Transporation and Public Works Commitee meeting is Tuesday, November 17th and the items are time specific for 130PM
– Email me (michael.janz@gmail.com) if you can come and we can try to coordinate messages

http://www.edmonton.ca/city_government/city_organization/council-committee-meetings.aspx

If you are interested in registering to speak to these items please call the office of the city clerk. The number is available at the above link, just scroll down to the bottom.

JOIN OUR FACEBOOK GROUP:

http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=50755059533&ref=ts