• the big stories

    by  • August 11, 2008 • too random • 16 Comments

    On a Monday … begging for typin’ time … we discuss the haps ~

    – – –


    CalGiantStrawberries have gone back-to-back with National Men’s Road Champions. Last year it was Maximus the Jenk(ins) winning a U-23 title against an uber-stacked field of young bull, farmfresh and laboratory approved.

    This year it’s James “sliderule” Mattis winning the ELITE Natz jersey with AndyJM slamming down 2nd, with Steve the Rean nailing the coffin shut with a 5th.

    … wait a minute, does that mean KatCuriMattis can’t keep making James do the dishes since she’s the one who had the Stars’nBars in the household?

    huffit.jpgDamn good showing for NorCal, especially considering that Evan Huffman took himself a 17-18 Title as well. But, there was definitely some weirdness to this Natz weekend. Apparently a 3 minute rule was put into effect for the road races … meaning, if anyone got 3 minutes behind the LEAD enclosure, they were yanked from the race.

    So … in the u-23 race, a group of 20 or so got a 3 minute gap on a field of 50+ … and all 50 were pulled.


    Or, better said by a cat who was there to see the mousin’ around:

    “The promoter’s road closure permit only allowed for 3 minutes at a time, then they had to start letting traffic thru again whether or not there were still riders coming thru the intersections. Have to let the SUVs through to get the kids to the soccer game and buy triple lattes Starbucks.

    What was funny is that going into the 6th and final lap, the main field (70+ riders) kept the gap to Mattis, AJM and Thurlow at exactly 2:50, then once we crossed the line everyone sat up and went into grupetto mode. By the end of the 6th lap the gap was over 6 minutes. We were told in prerace instructions that the only place the field would get pulled was at the finish line.”

    There you go.

    SoCal + USAC = clusterf*ck

    – – – – –

    cokeychina.jpgChina … the OpiumWars all over again

    Not opium this time … instead, have some coke.

    or, HappyMeals, Frappaccinos, RedPepsi, PizzaHut, …

    they deserve it, if they want it.

    just like us.

    – – –

    As one corpo-fuck was quoted as saying, “Olympic sponsors are staring at a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to engage and snare the Chinese consumer.”

    yeeesss, ensnare them. Get them!

    Consume them.

    – – – – –

    brithotness.jpgRoad Racing … Oly-style

    Ok, I’m pretty ‘snared’ by NicoleCooke.

    i know i shouldn’t be this shallow (in public) … but daYUM ~ this photo makes me squirmy in the nethah-regions if you catch my drift.

    But, of course, the story for me of this year’s Olympic Women’s road race is the abysmal number of athletes competing. 66 starters? that is criminal.

    I can only gasp at the budgetary requirements of the Olympic Games (see corpo-influence above). However, i’m not really sure i understand limiting the number of women cyclists competing. As the real Armstrong said,

    “I understand that perhaps the depth isn’t there for every country, but cycling is a team sport, so each country should have equal representation, whether it’s four, three or just two riders,” she said. “We should all be equal.”

    Armstrong also believes that each member of the winning team should receive a gold medal, not just the rider who crosses the finish line first. Since riders work together to help a teammate win, everyone should receive a medal.

    “Just like any other team sport, if you win, everyone deserves a medal,” Armstrong said. “The Olympics is looking for individual effort if they’re only going to award one medal. [Road] cycling isn’t just an individual effort. It’s a team sport.” VN

    ~ ok, that’s another one making me squirmy…

    – – – – –

    yeah_babyyeah.jpgOne Last BitOHotness

    The Drumm won Carrera this weekend.

    I haven’t gotten any reports on this one yet … but it looks like BamBerger was the meat stuck ‘tween two slices o’ PROMAN’wich.

    I love the expressions in GLau’s pic …

    Shelley is happy like the clam to see her Teammie win the prize. Drumm looks like she earned it the hard way, and BLAMberger has that shrug of … “hey, whatyagonnado against two?”

    so cool.



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    16 Responses to the big stories

    1. August 11, 2008 at

      the “official” San Rafael press release stated that Drumm and Olds were competing against each other for the win. it’s clear the writer didn’t understand the team concept of the sport. I cringed when I read that statement.

    2. Adam
      August 11, 2008 at

      Ok, I usually have a hard time complaining about Nationals since I know it takes a lot of work to put them on and the host club receives little to no funding from USA Cycling, but this year was a complete disaster. I tried to stay away from complaining to the promoters and officials at nationals since I knew they already had their hands full, but I need somewhere to vent my anger.

      First off…parking lot crit. Really? for a national championships?

      For the rr, the rules put into effect were kind of bs. When announced the three minute rule on the line, I think all of the riders in the U23 race (who went before the elites) believed it to be a “three minute behind the main field rule”. This is how it has almost always been done in the past.

      Yes, riders like Max and myself should have made the first split, but we didn’t, and it went on the first lap. They were out there for a long time. Finally, on the 4th lap, a group of fifteen of us was able to break away from the pack and establish a strong chase. Coming through the line with 2 to go, we were 3:20 behind the SOLO leader and about 2:45 behind the lead group. Despite being told to stop with 2 laps to go, our group decided to take another lap to prove what we could do. On that lap, 7 of us closed the gap to the group still i n medal contention from 2:45 to 1:20. And we still had a lap to go, but we were forcefully stopped by the officials. I have no doubt that with the lead group being out there so long, we would have caught them on the last lap.

      That being said, congrats to all the National Champions out there and to my teammate Justin Williams winning the U23 crit in his first year as a U23.

    3. Michael Hernandez
      August 11, 2008 at

      i hear ya, Adam, about not wanting to dis the folks who make it happen.

      but, we are talking about the national championships here … i mean, if there is anything that USAC should be investing in…
      well, maybe i’m wrong.

    4. Ren
      August 11, 2008 at

      gotta truly hand it to Helene..while the rest of us enjoyed an early season of racing, she was fighting the wildfires…awesome comeback for the season!

    5. Michael Hernandez
      August 11, 2008 at

      it was just a form of altitude training for her … fire-induced lack of oxygen is SOOOO good for your Vo2 max.

    6. August 11, 2008 at

      Yeah, I love the expressions in my photo of the San Rafael finish. A full recap of the women’s race is in Flandria’s blog:

    7. Adam Abramowicz
      August 11, 2008 at

      This is a great flippin’ photo. ProMan, you GoGirls!

    8. ddt
      August 11, 2008 at

      Didn’t know Mattis went to my old school! Got this on a mailing list today:

      “MIT alum and former MIT cycling club president wins USA Cycling Elite National Championship road race

      James Mattis, a former MIT cycling club president, won USA Cycling’s annual Elite National Championship road race last weekend, besting a field of the top amateur racers in the country. James, now racing for the California Giant cycling team, won the 166 km (103 mile) road race in 4:28:39, finishing 8 seconds ahead of his teammate Andy Jacques Maynes. James participated in collegiate bicycle racing with the cycling club while at MIT, and served as club president in 1997-1998. A photo of James in action while racing for MIT 10 years ago can be found here (http://web.mit.edu/~cycling-club/www/Photos/1998/slides/image13.html)”

    9. Pingback: Gossip talks » Blog Archive » Comment on the big stories by Garrett Lau

    10. August 11, 2008 at

      San Raffy was impressive. Shelly bridged to a well established group of 5, that had one rider fall back (Karla?) outta the break. No worries, Shelly was coming across no matter what and at first Kristin didn’t realize it & was still pulling in the break. But once Olds got there, dragging Karla back into the fold, it was all over with. Helene put in a solid attack prior to the bell, and Shelly/Kristin sat and smirked, knowing someone else had to answer. Sarah was forced to do so and did a great ride for 3rd.

      The men’s race saw a monster ride from Scott Z, attacking the “break” of 25 with 25 mins to go. Bernard and Jared were oh so smooth coming across. Jaren is SO strong, but may have laid too much out there because an acceleration from Bernard popped him back to the chasing Wohlberg. Bernard deserved the win, pulling all the uphill sections everytime, but Scott Z was spirited.

    11. F Lee
      August 11, 2008 at

      I feel bad for the U23 kids who came from across the country to only be told on the line that they had to keep the lead down to 3 minutes. The cops said that the volunteers were allowing cars back on the street too early, while riders were still coming.

      This needs to be worked out before.

      Originally, they were told it was a 10 minute gap would get ya pulled.

    12. cycloscott
      August 11, 2008 at

      Way to go James!

      And now to pick nits. The Men’s Elite race is 24 hours old, and mysteriously there is still not a single mention on the VeloSpew site. I don’t know why I even expected some sort of coverage from them. Wishful thinking I guess. Apparently if Horner, Hincapie or Leipheimer aren’t involved, it doesn’t really happen. Lame. Simply lame.

    13. Sabine
      August 11, 2008 at

      See if you can find mention on Velonews of who our new women’s national road race champion is….

      pretty sad

    14. mrg
      August 11, 2008 at

      just the mention of Vn, a huge upswelling of angst. it’s the USAToday of cycling. wtf?

      mad props to mattis & promans.

    15. August 13, 2008 at

      Big props to Helene for the win! But I gotta give my teammate Amanda Seigle of Code 3 Racing more props for getting into the break, workin’ it and hittin’ the line for 4th place!

    16. Michael Hernandez
      August 13, 2008 at

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