I was 15 minutes into my cyclocross ride on the Fullerton Loop last Friday, with the goal of continuing to punish the SRAM Rival group, when I heard that sound cyclists dreads to hear, the clunk of a large rock hitting the front rim, pinching the tire. Sure enough, the tire slowly lost pressure and I was forced to pull off the side of the trail next to the road. Just as I had finished putting a new tube into the wheel, a car pulled up next to me. “Do you need a pump?” I actually did. My mini-pump was not doing that good of a job inflating and my only option was to ride back to my car and re-inflate my tire. This kind hearted driver is an engineer at Raytheon and an avid rider and racer back in the day. In the trunk of his car were his bike, pump and spare tubes. After using his pump, we swapped stories about racing and running into fellow riders in the most random of places. Fel is really good guy and helped me out. My faith in mankind has been restored.
I finished my ride and as I turned into the parking lot where I had parked my car, I noticed that the rear tire was low. By now I was out of spare tubes, so I called it a day.
The trunk with anything a cyclist could need
The League of Shit Talkers convened in Orange County Saturday at Surf City Cyclery. They have a weekly morning ride rolling out of the shop. This ride we had a special guest, Toyota-United team member and soon to be Discovery Channel rider, Tony Cruz. Apparently, one of the League Members ran into Tony as he was training and somehow talked him into riding with us. He is getting ready for the annual Discovery Channel training camp in December by putting in chamois time. His goals: the Classics and the Tour. He rode from his house to the shop, and then did the ride for a total saddle time of about five hours. The League is not quite as ambitious as Cruz and so we all drove to the shop. But that’s why we’re the League and Cruz is Discovery Channel. The League Members don’t need to do five hour rides; we just need to hang-out, look good, b.s. and go from coffee shop to coffee shop. We rode south on PCH, up and over NewportCoast and back to the shop. It was days like this that I’m happy my parents immigrated to the States. It’s November and I’m in short sleeves. It was the usual hijinks and trash talking further instigated by Liz “Roubaix Girl” Hatch who was gracing us with her presence. She was here in SoCal from her native Florida getting in some training for the upcoming season. At least that’s what she told us…
Goolay checking Nad Boy’s resting heart rate
Sunday’s ride was a bit of a cluster. I was prepared to do the weekly world championships known as Como Street. This ride has been going strong in OrangeCounty since the 50’s and has always started at . There is another option that rolls out at , affectionately called “Old Man” Como, because, well, it’s old men. My buddy and I pull up and we see a small group of riders departing. After a very brief chase we caught them. It’s at this point I notice that we’re the youngest ones there. After going all “investigative journalist” I find out that the ride times have been switched and “Old Man” starts at and the world championships are now at ! Damn, now I have to get up even earlier to make this ride! It was still a good ride and it forced me to think of my lessons from Nathan O’Neill and staying within my heart rate zones. I got money on O’Neill having a good year!