I’m in Vegas ‘working’

I skillfully took this shot of Tim and Jeff Louder no handed. I’ve got mad photo skillz

Tim and I had the opportunity to stay at the Red Rock Casino for three days and two nights to test ride both the Synapse SL and System 6 Cannondale bikes. But just to make things a little more interesting, we also test rode the Lew wheels and hung out with Heath Net’s Jeff Louder. Its trips like this when I realize again how good my job is.

Both Tim and I have ridden the System 6 and Synapse before and continue to love the bike. As a racer I appreciate the System 6’s handling. I feel really confident on this bike and have tread the needle through tight gaps on this machine. The Synapse SL is about the same weight, but with a slightly more relaxed geometry that appeals to riders putting in long days in the saddles. The Synapse SL is still very much a racing machine. Three riders on Liquigas use the Synapse SL as their bike of choice.

The Lew wheels are an amazing set of wheels and for $6000 they better be! Going up slight gradients the Lews silently spun along. The usual of ‘whirling’ noise from aero spokes is absent due to the lack of deflection coming from the spokes. The deflection from the spokes is similar to the chop sound from a spinning helicopter blade. No deflection, no chopping sound. At 850 grams for the pair, climbing with the Lew wheels made hanging with Louder a little more possible.

The cool part of these types of trips is to hang with the pro. This can either be really awkward if the guy is a pain in the ass. So far that hasn’t been the case and the pros I’ve hung out with are easy to get along with. Like I mentioned, Jeff Louder was the guy who was going to be riding with. He’s an easy going guy on and off the bike. When the schedule started to change for the time we were going to ride he just went with the flow. When the ride started he kept the pace at a non-pro speed and we just rode tempo through Red Rock Canyon. Interviewing him was also painless. In fact we spoke for 45 minutes and I still need to call him and finish the interview! Look for the interview with Jeff, the review of the Lew wheels, Red Rock Casino and more in the July issue of ROAD coming out mid June.

6:45 AM in front of the Red Rock Casino and it is 87 degrees and dry

The view from highest point of the Red Rock Loop