Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Momma didn't raise no quitters


My Mom is full of inspirational quotes. One of which was "Can't isn't in the dictionary". When us smartalec kids would point it out in the dictionary to her she would reply "It's not in MY dictionary!"
So with that and a cornucopia of other corny saying hounding me I set off to exhaust all possibilities of racing my Singular at MT Ascutney.
I still had my spare tube in the saddle bag of my fixed gear. No light weight, but by choice I wanted to race a 20+ pound single speed mountain bike up a paved mountain road instead of a 16 pound 18 speed road bike; I'm not going to fret over 20-30 grams.

So down to the basement I descended.
Unseat the bead
pulled the tube
liberally talc the spare tube
carefully rolled it back into the tire
and then worked that mother onto the rim

I managed to got it on without puncturing it, and it didn't mysteriously fail either.



Here's the part where I complain about my thumb; please skip italicized text to avoid:

The effort left my thumb and hand stiff and throbbing Hopefully this will improve when the inflammation goes down. Racing Mt. Snow is definitely in doubt at this point, as well as the races in the beginning of August; I can't risk any ill effects to my ability to do my job.

Now here's my thinking with racing a singlespeed mountain bike:
In mountain bike races I climb faster on the singlespeed than most climb on their geared bikes. It just fits my style. Last year at Bikes for Bovines (results linky), I finished 6 minutes behind Kevin Hines (he was third in the Pro race). Big deal, you're saying some guy BEAT you by 6 minutes. Bikes for Bovines(course gps linky) is a 24 mile course that climbs for half that distance and then descends on some singletrack but mostly fireroads with a couple of long flat sections thrown in for good measure. If a bike handler like Hines couldn't take 3 minutes a lap out of me on the descents and flats, he was riding a flat or his brakes were rubbing. Having two guys in front of him, I doubt he was soft pedaling. I was also the fastest Cat1 on the day. I'm also the suckiest suck to ever suck descending whether I'm riding rigid or not.
So my thinking is if I get the right gear, and climb like I do in a mountain bike race (i.e. standing), maybe I can improve on past years times.
Plus it might be a really cool photo op; you don't have to wear a helmet on the climb so you can look all Euro-kool.
Not to mention half the fun of racing a hill climb is coming back down the mountain, where compared to most hill-climbers I'm a golden god on the descents. Now with disc brake this should be really fun.

Hill repeat trials are tonight!

2 comments:

Fat Chance said...

Love the 700c single speed...some might call it a hybrid..not me mind you.
Great bike.
Are you doing the DH40?

CB2 said...

Fat Chance,
No, I wish. I'm going to make my return to racing at Hodges Village Dam(n)/ MA State Championships. I didn't want to make any racing commitments until I knew I could handle it; I'm not Jens you know, and Hodges Village is less than an hour from home.