Archive for December, 2010

1. The potential low temperatures.

2. It is physically IMPOSSIBLE to eat enough calories.

3. My back hurts.

4. My knees hurt.

5. Those icy corners of doom.

6. I cannot afford to have enough sets of different tires for the changeable conditions from lap to lap.

7. So I will end up riding my worn out inappropriately heavy and low treaded Ardents with patched sidewalls from a summer and winter of zooming.

9. I have turned into a roadie in an effort to get fit enough.

10. The freezing precipitaiton.

11. My inadequate physical, mental and meta-physical preperation.

12. The 3-week recovery period.

13. Numb finger-tips and tootsies, despite primaloft gloves and neoprene overshoes.

14. The expense of having to replace brakepads alarmingly often (especially if they have not been bedded in before you start a lap).

15. Sleep Monster attacks!

16. If I don’t acheive as many laps as I want to I will feel unmanly and a total failure.

17. Dealing with the sheer embarassment of having to wear full lycra. Oh my!

18. Seeing photographs of myself riding chunky monkey with a full compliment of geekily uncool mudguards.

19. Not winning anything.

20 .Taking it too seriously.

21. Not taking it seriously enough.

22. The Contin trails will suffer from erosion.

23. I may have to pretend not to get annoyed when someone accidentally sprays me with a jet of icy water when hosing their bike down.

24. This list.

25. I will have to use wet-lube on my bike which makes the chain all icky.

26. The kids don’t think endurance racing is cool.

27. I am not a real singlespeeder because I only have to shave once a month.

28. 42″ is for “pussies”.

29. I am a “pussy”.

30. Meow!

31. My beautifully preened fur will get all damp and mud splattered.

32. Portaloos are grim at the best of times.

33. Removing layers of clothing and unhooking bibs from shoulders in said portaloos only to find that there is no where to store aforementioned removed layers but the yucky floor.

34. If I use Ergon grips I might not get tingly fingers again from squishing my nerves, but the metal locking collar will annoy me when I climb out of the saddle with my fingers curling over the edges of the bars.

35. I might be less than excited to ride behind someone who is utilising a blinky red light on their seatpost to warn fellow racers of their presence.  Come on!

36. A voluntary avoidance of alcohol means I don’t have the option of quitting and getting twisted at the campfire.

37. My voluntary avoidance of alcohol means I am not a real singlespeeder.

38. My steel singlespeed weighs more than than your geared fully.

39. Why does no-one sell unsulphured dried apricots in the highlands?

40. Having a runny nose.

41. Blowing and wiping away aforementioned mucus too much, so that the skin beneath my nostrils becomes tender and aggrevated.

42. Not hardening up.

43.  Continuing to ride the steep climbs so that I don’t walk and rip the bottom of my new Endura neoprene over shoes.

44. My overshoes having to be a size to big to fit over the strange shape of my shoes’ soles, so it looks like I’m wearing clown shoes.

45. Ben might draw attention to the fact that my clown shoes match my clown wheels.

46. As might any other big wheel hater.

47. Who cares?

48. I care.

49. If I ride to close to Duncan on the singletrack our curly handles might get snagged and a crash may ensue.

50. The limiting factor of riding fast at night is the power of you lights.

51. Bright lights are very costly.

52. Even if you are lucky enough to have the opportunity to buy said bright lights at cost price.

53. Lapped racing is monotonous.

54. Lapped racing is uncool on the forums.

55. That rock slab which is fine in the dry.

56. That long rocky bit after the climb up from the bridge which beats the heck out of you.

57. I have no time for a full suspension bike even though it would make sense at the time.

58. If you did have a springy bike and jetwashed it after every lap (to check for wear etc) you would need a new bush kit at the end of the race. £!

59. If you run Fox Forx and followed their guidelines for service intervals, a soloist would have to drop their lowers off and replace the oil part way through the race, after 15 hours of riding.

60. If you run Rockshox and followed their guidelines for service intervals,  a soloist would only have another hour of riding left in their forks before having to drop the lowers off  and replace the dirty oil.

61. Calm down! We offer full fork and shock servicing packages.

62. The tales of glory will sound thin and unsubstantial to those who have not experienced the event.

63. If I stop too long in the pits I will be drawn towards the fire and will not leave.

64. When I do leave I will have temporary lung damage due to smoke inhalation.

65. Green and Blacks Mayan Gold is no longer vegan friendly. 😦

66. If I camp over the night before I will feel like a carp compared to my competitors with heated motor homes and egyptian cotton sheets on their duck feather pillows.  Shame on you.

67. If I had a motor home I would probably take full advantage of the hot showers and grill provided within.

68. The threat of sneaky cheats! I don’t know if people do conspire to cheat, but you would only be cheating yourselves, losers!

69. Following locals on the good lines and realising that even after 24 hours they still know how to ride them much better than you.

70. Illogically fearing that the timing hardware is innaccurate.

71. Getting nasty spasms and involuntary twitches in your muscles but especially those poor tired eyes.

72. Getting home and realising that you will have to do more than one wash because the laundry will not fit into the drum no matter how tightly you pack it.

73. Your friends may or may not be holding a sweepstake regarding how many laps you can acheive.

74. Betting is bad news.

75. Servicing your bike to get it in race condition, only to realise that post-race its going to be humped regardless.

76. Realising the money you spend on food is more than the race entry fee.

77. If I use lobster mitt gloves I will have to adpot two finger braking again. bwurgh!

78. I swore never to build my character with a bike ever again after I laid my flatland bike to rest.

79. That humpy bumpy bit before the final descent that is a flowy joy of pump-track on a trail in the summer, turns into a quagmire of trench warfare after a heavy monsoon-like proportions.

80. How can a fire-road climb be that slow?

81.  Maxxis beavers are going to arrive in the country the day after the race.

82. Your positive mental attitude might be destroyed by people consistently reminding you how much you hated the experience last year.

83. You could put the entry fee and the fuel money towards another bike part that won’t make you enjoy riding bikes any more than you currently do.

84. I do not identify as a racer.

85. If I wear two pairs of cyling shorts as advocated by some endurance riders, I would have to lower my seat a few mm from the perfect height that it has taken months to locate.

86. There might be ghouls in the dark woods.  Eek!

87. Ben thinks this list is nearly as ridiculous as his life.

88. But he secretly loves it.

89. The time spent writing this list could have been used more effectively eating a high carbohydrate diet whilst turbo-training.

90. I might get caught up in the moment and run during the le mans start and pull a muscle in my heel because I am not used to running.

91. If I walk in the le mans start I will give off the impression that I have no interest in doing as well as I can in the race.

92. I have asked the support crew to beat me if I stay in the pits for more than 10 minutes, after the start of the race. Which I might regret as I bruise easily and my girlfriend likes my bone structure as it is.

93. I have no interest in taking down camp after riding my bike for so long.

94. If it rains alot, my rejection of loc-on style grippers mean I might get throttle-grip.

95. I prefer to ride gloveless, because it feels nicer to me, but my fingers would turn into icicles.

96. You won’t win any money, a car, a new T.V., any bike parts, a holiday, a massage or an inner tube repair patch (non-self adhesive type).

97. It would entertain me very much  to see someone ride down that slab on a giraffe unicycle, but I bet no-one will even enter the event on a giraffe unicycle.  And if they did, they would probably walk that section.

98. Your tongue might become literally frozen in your cheek.

99. You might have to go to work the next day.  Unless of course you had a great boss, who is handsome, witty and a dab-hand on a bike, who allowed you to take the following week off to recover.

100. You might enjoy yourself.

Personally I can’t wait.

See you there!

Here are a few songs I enjoyed listening to whilst typing this up:

Nana Grizol – Circles ‘Round The Moon

Wingnut Dishwashers Union – Trash Rules Everything

Andrew Jackson Jihad “People II: The Reckoning”

Madeline Ava “I’m a Little Dinosaur”


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Salsa in the snow

This is my lovely new Salsa El Mariachi 29er built up with Semi rims, White Industries cranks and hubs and some nice silver bits to finish off. Feels great although I’ve not managed to go far yet in the snow – 15psi in the tyres helps but only so much…

Salsa El Mariachi in the snow

It’s also my first attempt at a “tilt shift” snap – it would have been better if I’d climbed up on the roof, but if you look at yesterday’s photo you’ll understand why I didn’t!

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Snow’s a wee bit early this year…

Luckily we have lobster mitts and snow tyres in stock so we can still ride our bikes – and so can you!

Home Blitz – Feeling Cold

It's nice and warm inside...

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