Collegiate BMX National Championships head to Georgia in 2015

USA Cycling News - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 10:15
USA Cycling has announced the 2015 Collegiate BMX National Championships will be held at the Dixieland Nationals at the Cobb County BMX track in Powder Springs, Ga., April 25-26.
Categories: News

inside the box... we need to stay within the parameters of the box... or I guess we are supposed to

gwadzilla - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 10:13

a series of images by Bruce Buckleythanks for the shots Bruce!
on LinkedIn there was an article about "looking the part"conforming... fitting in... not standing out...
it is a tough thing to weigh inwhen looking for a job... should we be ourselves or should be try to be the person that they are looking for?I shaved my beard for interviews... but did not get the jobI kept the beard and landed the gig I have now
as the IT Specialist at CBS News I was bearded and dressed as I felt comfortableand here at the Smithsonian... no one seems to bat an eye
but... I get iteven those who accepting of non-conformity will have presupposed notions of people for how they lookI get it... I really do

Categories: Fixed

Ohio DOT Hosts Transit Meeting That No One Can Reach Via Transit

Streetsblog New York City - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 10:02

Ohio DOT is one of those old-school transportation agencies that’s still just a highway department. The director is a former asphalt industry lobbyist. The state — despite being fairly densely populated and urban (about 1 million people don’t have cars) — spent only $7.3 million supporting transit in 2013, far less than it devotes to mowing highway medians.

 Urban Cincy via Google Maps

ODOT is planning to gather feedback about transit service in the Cincinnati region at a location that is entirely inaccessible to people who rely on transit. Map: Urban Cincy via Google Maps

To its credit, however, Ohio DOT is currently hosting a series of meetings asking for feedback about public transit around the state. Unfortunately, writes Paige Malott at Urban Cincy, the meeting for the Cincinnati region will be in exurban Lebanon, essentially impossible to reach without access to a personal automobile:

By car, Lebanon is roughly a one hour drive north of Cincinnati, and a 30-minute drive south from Dayton. It’s also the city where the regional ODOT office is located; understandably why the administration would opt to hold a public involvement meeting here. What went unconsidered are the needs of people that the public meeting is focused on: citizens reliant on public transportation.

The closest Metro bus stop to Lebanon is 8.3 miles away, near Kings Island in Mason. Let’s say we’re feeling ambitious and attempt to take the bus, then bicycle the remaining journey to Lebanon. It would take 48 minutes to cycle to the meeting in addition to the 1 hour, 11 minute ride on the bus. Cincinnati Metro, the region’s bus system, only offers select service to the northern suburbs. In order to arrive on time for the 10am meeting, a person dependent on transit would have to catch the 71x at 7:45 a.m., arrive in Mason at 8:52 a.m., then continue to the meeting on bicycle.

Getting back home is another story. The public involvement meeting adjourns at 12pm, but the bus route that services Mason is a job connection bus, meaning it only runs traditional hours when people are going to and from work. After another 48 minutes of cycling back to the bus stop, the inbound 71x picks up shortly after 3pm and returns to Cincinnati at 4:40pm.

In summary, if a citizen dependent on bus transportation wishes to give ODOT their input, they would spend 7 hours commuting to the two hour meeting, and need to able-bodied to ride a bicycle for eight miles. What about senior citizens and people with disabilities? Who can afford to take an entire day off work to attend a meeting? As a transit rider who has a car, driving an hour each way to attend the meeting — in the middle of the work day — for me, is inconvenient and unfeasible.

The poor choice of trying to combine Cincinnati and Dayton into one meeting was an unfortunate oversight in event planning. Instead, meetings should be hosted in the downtown of each city, just like they have been in Columbus and Cleveland, which are also participating in the ODOT series.

Classic ODOT. In better news, WCPO Cincinnati is reporting that Nelson\Nygaard — the consultants ODOT hired to conduct the study — are recommending twice the current level of transit funding from the state. Hopefully Governor Kasich will heed that advice, and that will be just the beginning of the reforms to come. Because even after doubling support for transit, ODOT’s contribution will remain scandalously inadequate.

Elsewhere on the Streetsblog Network today: Bike Portland points out that even as Portland residents complain about parking problems, they report their neighborhoods are improving for the better. Transportation for America says new grant programs used to distribute transportation funds in Oregon and Pennsylvania could be the wave of the future. And the Virginia Bicycling Federation reports that a proposed $100 million bond issue for transportation would be a boon for walking and biking in Fairfax County.

Categories: Culture

Pantani’s Giro ban examined, Gotti ‘ready to concede’ 1999 Giro

VeloNews - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 09:39

Marco Pantani (Mercatone Uno) was poised to win the 1999 Giro d'Italia ahead of Ivan Gotti (Polti). But he was expelled from the race before the final mountain stage after a doping test. Photo: Tim De Waele |

MILAN (VN) — Ivan Gotti is ready to give up his 1999 Giro d’Italia win if a new investigation centered on Marco Pantani’s expulsion from that race shows foul play linked to the mafia.

“I’ll accept the decision that arrives,” Gotti told Italy’s Il Tempo newspaper Tuesday.

“Rewriting the story is not a problem in respect to what happened to poor Marco. If they were to assign him that Giro, I would not feel privy to anything. I’m ready to concede.”

The 45-year-old Italian from Bergamo won the 1999 Giro by 3:35 over Paolo Savoldelli and by 3:36 over Gilberto Simoni. It was his second Giro win after his 1997 victory. He also placed fifth overall at the 1995 Tour de France.

The 1999 win came under a cloud of scandal as Pantani, winner of the 1998 Giro and Tour the year before, was excluded the morning before the final mountain stage, following an anti-doping test.

Pantani won the Madonna di Campiglio stage on June 4 and held the race leader’s pink jersey by 5:38 over Savoldelli and 6:12 over Gotti. Before he could leave the ski village the next morning, June 5, testers checked his hematocrit level. His blood showed 51.9 percent — above the 50 percent limit — indicating use of EPO, a banned blood-booster drug.

“Il Pirata” had to sit out two weeks. He returned to win two stages in the 2000 Tour de France, but those were his last two victories as he faded from competition and died due to cocaine overdose on February 14, 2004.

History could be rewritten, however. The public prosecutor in Forlì, in the region of Emilia-Romagna near Pantani’s home in Cesena, is examining if the mafia and sports fixing had a hand in Pantani’s exclusion that morning. Already, Prosecutor Sergio Sottani called career criminal Renato Vallanzasca. Vallanzasca said over the years that the Camorra [an Italian crime syndicate] was involved, and in 1999, he was warned against betting on Pantani’s win.

Romano Cenni, head of the Mercatone Uno company that sponsored Pantani’s 1999 team, has heard enough and already hired a lawyer to push for changes. He wants the overall classification to be rewritten to how it stood the evening Pantani won at Madonna di Campiglio, and he wants winner’s pink jersey from Gotti.

“I cannot say if it was a conspiracy, an error, or other circumstances, but what I am sure of is that new facts are emerging that, together with those already assessed, demonstrate that the decision taken in respect of Marco Pantani, and team Mercatone Uno, should be amended and revised,” Marco Baroncini, Cenni’s lawyer, told Italy’s TGCOM television.

“Mercatone Uno, and in particular its president, Romano Cenni, would like that Pantani is given back what was unjustly taken away.”

Cenni and his lawyer will be able to draw on the evidence of the criminal inquiry in Forlì for their sporting case. They will likely have to wait until the inquiry closes to begin their push for Gotti’s pink jersey.

At the same time, just 33 miles away in Rimini, a separate investigation is looking into the possibility that Pantani was murdered. Pantani’s family hired a lawyer that argues that men forced their way into Pantani’s hotel room and made him to drink water diluted with lethal amounts of cocaine against his will.

Any sporting case will look at the outcomes of the Forlì and Rimini investigations, and back over Pantani’s career. Besides two previous cocaine overdoses, Pantani’s hematocrit read high, 60.1 percent, after a crash in the 1995 Milano-Torino and his urine collected en route to the 1998 Tour win showed evidence of EPO according to a 2013 French senate report.

The post Pantani’s Giro ban examined, Gotti ‘ready to concede’ 1999 Giro appeared first on

Categories: News

Ritte Goes To Malibu with The Rider Diaries: A Chance Encounter

Urban Velo - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 08:59

“You got this.” Amazing short film from Ritte.

Categories: Fixed

100MoN: Winner of the Iowa County Gravel Grinder In the Dead of Night Division

Fat Cyclist - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 08:56

A Note from Fatty: Today’s 100 Miles of Nowhere race report comes to you courtesy of Martin B, who first caught my attention when he posted this shot of himself on Twitter as he was riding Ragbrai, on a fat bike:

Screenshot 2014 10 30 07 10 59

Clearly, this is a man to be reckoned with. Plus I like his choice in clothing and his hair style, for some reason.

Anyway, when he started tweeting that he was going to do his 100 Miles of Nowhere as a gravel grinder, I got excited…and a little bit suspicious. Excited if he was going to really make it a “nowhere” ride—a true short course going around, on a gravel course, in the middle of nowhere, in the middle of the night, sounds about as perfectly “100 Miles of Nowhere” as is possible.

But I was also suspicious: was this going to really be what he was going to do? Or was he going to just do an epic 100 mile point to point at night and call it his “100 Miles of Nowhere?”

Note that there’d be nothing wrong with that; it just wouldn’t be quite as “nowhere,” as it were.

As it turns out, I had no reason to be suspicious. 

Screenshot 2014 10 30 07 07 23

100MoN: Winner of the Iowa County Gravel Grinder In the Dead of Night Division

2014 has been the year of gravel. I dipped my toe into the gravel scene last year and was hooked. I bought a fat bike and rode the gravel roads all winter, signed up to ride Dirty Kanza (the 100 mile “Half Pint” version), and even rode RAGBRAI on my fat bike.

I was having a ball.

So, when Elden announced the date for the 2014 100MoN, I knew I had to ride it and I knew exactly what that ride would be. It had to be on gravel. And to make it more interesting I decided to do it at night because I needed experience riding in the dark.

In hindsight I should have thought about it a little bit more.

Since I’d done several century rides this year I didn’t give much thought to preparation. I’d ridden Dirty Kanza in May and the memory of my suffering had long since been forgotten.

It didn’t take long for my legs to remind me that I should have prepared more.

With less than a week until the ride, I started thinking about my nutrition plan, what I was going to wear, and what music I wanted on my iPod. My box of swag for entering the 100MoN came in handy. I supplemented it with some peanut butter sandwiches, some small cans of Coke and baggies of almonds and peanut M&Ms and pretzels.

The day before the ride, I was ready, except I hadn’t yet chosen a route. I knew I’d ride somewhere west of town but not much beyond that. So off I went Friday afternoon to do some reconnaissance.

100MoN 006
Friday afternoon reconnaissance 15 miles west of Williamsburg, Iowa. Love the jersey!

There were several possibilities, but all had tons of climbing. Finally, I found a loop that measured a mile square and had “just” 304 feet of climb for each 4-mile loop. That works out to around 7600 ft of climb (Eric Gunnerson: I was happy to get it down to this).

100MoN Route
My route was in the middle of nowhere. Five farm homes and two abandoned homes.

100MoN Elevation
Up and down. Up and down. 7600 feet of climbing.

I had a four-mile loop with just over a mile of “Level B” road. In Iowa those are the roads that receive no maintenance. They can be full of ruts, random rocks and debris, and usually no gravel whatsoever.

100MoN 009
“Minimum maintenance” roads = Primitive.

I mentioned my route to someone who lives near there, and she cautioned me to be on my guard for coyotes. “They love to hunt along those “B” roads. Bring mace,” she advised.

Day of Reckoning

The forecast called for calm and nighttime temps hovering right at 50 degrees. Perfect. I loaded up the car and headed out to my staging location. At the edge of town, I realized I’d left my warm clothes and food back at the house. Damn. I’m glad I went back.

I got to “home base” around six. A family on the route was gracious enough to let me use their property as my headquarters. Sunset was around 6:30. A riding partner of mine, Mike, showed up to ride the first 25 miles with me.

Mike and I hit the road around 6:30. We did one lap before darkness took over. The moon set shortly after the sun, so I had dark skies the whole night. One lap done, no problem. Laps two, three, four, easy. We took a nature break on lap five (20 miles) and pulled in again after lap six. It was 8:30 and Mike was heading home to heat, food and TV.

100MoN 001
Mike (on the left) looks happy. He’s heading home after riding 24 miles.

My lights were working well. I had no trouble seeing the road and any hazards that lie ahead. About two months ago I’d bought a Salsa Fargo with the intention of using it for long gravel rides. Tonight would be my longest ride on the Fargo. It was comfortable all night and descended the gravel roads like a champ.

100MoN 008
Love this bike!

Around mile 35 a group of deer ran across the road just ahead of me. You’ve all seen Bambi.

Sweet Bambi.

Well, up close and personal Bambi is a freight train that could send me flying into the next county. Now I’ve got to worry about deer bursting from the fields and man-eating coyotes.

I learned a few things about riding at night.

  • It gets really cold in low-lying areas.
  • You can’t tell how steep a hill is if you can’t see it.
  • You can’t see what you’re eating.
  • You can’t see your Garmin so you never know what speed you’re going. I like knowing my cadence, average speed, climb, yada, yada, yada. But tonight I would be in the dark when it came to my riding performance (pun intended).

100MoN B Road
What I saw for nine hours

At mile 48, I picked up a baggie of almonds and M&Ms and dropped about five unwrapped snack-size Snicker Bars into my Revelate Designs Gas Tank. Trick or Treat to me!

I ate the rest of a Subway sandwich, and got a fresh bottle filled with CarboRocket. This is my new favorite drink. Raspberry Lemonade is wonderful.

You’ll note I’m not mentioning my hardworking support crew. That’s because there was no support crew. My friends were home in bed.

It was now around 11pm and time to start the second half of my 100MoN. Only 13 laps to go. I noticed it had gotten really cold. This didn’t feel like 50 degrees. I learned later that it was in the high 30s. I hadn’t planned on temps that cold.

I felt warmer after a couple of laps. Sometime around mile 60 I dropped my water bottle. As I turned around to pick it up I noticed something large and black coming straight for me. I started screaming, hoping to scare the beast away. Was it a dog? A panther? A raccoon? Nope. It was my shadow. Headlights on dark nights can play tricks on you. Trick or Treat on me!

I picked up the water bottle. I didn’t bother wiping off the dust because I knew it would have a fresh coating in a few miles anyway. Down to the bottom of turn two. Stay to the right and miss the washboards. Halfway up the hill, get to the middle of the road where there’s less gravel.

Crest the hill and stay in the middle because it’s smoother there. Go another half-mile and turn south at the cemetery. This is a little downhill segment that I could get up to 22 miles an hour. Up over the first two stair step hills at a good clip, then crawl up step three at 5 miles an hour.

Then it’s downhill again at 22 miles an hour. Turn west on the “B” road and hang on.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

Here, the video kind of tells the story:

I stopped at mile 72 for something to eat and sat inside the heated workshop that my host family opened up for me to use (flush toilet!).

Done Is Not Done

I was shivering. It was 1:00 am. By my calculations I could be at this until 4 am. I had hoped to finish around two. I went outside.

I looked at my bike and said to myself, ‘I’m done.’

But it didn’t seem right to quit at 72 miles. Who does that? I would feel better if I quit at 75, so I got back on the bike for one more lap.

Somewhere around mile 80 I spied two glowing eyes on the road ahead. Coyote? A Cougar? I could barely make out the shape of its sloped back. My blood went cold(er): Hyena!!!

Then the deer turned its head and walked away. Those weren’t the eyes of any normal deer; he was on this earth to claim the souls of those unlucky to cross its path.

Of that I’m sure.

100MoN 002
Aftermath of my encounter with a soul-sucking deer with glowing eyes

Then the countdown was on. Five laps to go. Then four. I was going to miss the four spent shotgun shells lying in the road. I was going to miss the dirt-caked vegetation on the side of the road that look strangely like dirt-covered snow that refuses to melt in late spring.

At 3:30 am, I pulled into the farm drive for the last time. I took a few pictures and let folks know I had finished.

Riding at night is dark. It’s lonely and quiet. The stars were spectacular. I learned a lot about myself and what I’m capable of doing when I’m cold, tired and hungry.

Thanks, Fatty. You make cycling interesting.

100MoN 003
I’m glad it’s over.

100MoN 004
I actually rode faster than the 0.2mph this shows!

Categories: Culture

Froome remains undecided about 2015 Tour de France plans

VeloNews - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 08:56

Chris Froome could skip the 2015 Tour de France because the route does not suit his style. Photo: Tim De Waele |

Chris Froome (Sky) remains undecided if he will race next year’s Tour de France, reiterating his initial reaction that the 2015 route isn’t ideal for his style of racing.

Speaking to the Spanish daily AS during a recent critérium in Japan, the 2013 Tour winner said nothing is decided about his coming season’s schedule.

“We haven’t even started to discuss yet with the team, something we’ll do in the next few weeks and months,” he told AS. “I haven’t discounted any race yet. This Tour features very little time trial kilometers and a lot of climbs. It’s an unbalanced Tour, but the Tour is always the most important race. This Tour doesn’t favor the most balanced rider, but nothing is decided yet.”

Froome made headlines earlier this month when he suggested after taking a first glance at the 2015 Tour route that he might skip it entirely.

As he told AS, nothing appears to be decided yet. Froome will sit down with Sky management and coaching staff to decide the best possible option. With the Giro d’Italia offering more time trial kilometers, Froome has also hinted he might race the Giro instead.

“We will make an agreement by consensus,” Froome explained. “I wouldn’t consider it impossible to win both the Giro and Tour, but it would be very demanding, with little rest or recovery. I see it more realistic to aim for the Giro-Vuelta double, with the possibility to recover, and hit two peaks of form.”

Froome crashed out of his Tour defense in July, but bounced back to finish second in the Vuelta a España to Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo).

For 2015, Froome knows he will face plenty of competition from all sides.

“Injuries really hurt me this season,” Froome told AS. “In this sport, one day you’re up, the next you’re down. Contador confirmed his class at the Vuelta, he was better than me. Nibali also demonstrated his quality at the Tour. Alberto is probably my biggest rival right now, but you cannot forget Nibali, Purito, Valverde, or Quintana.”

The post Froome remains undecided about 2015 Tour de France plans appeared first on

Categories: News

bon voyage

Milano Fixed - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 08:52

Categories: Fixed

this video has stirred up some conversation... so... I need to watch the converse of the situation with a man walking 10 hours...

gwadzilla - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 08:40

a woman walked for 10 hours in NYC and they documented the activity around her with a GoProworth watching... give it a glance
some of this was pretty tamein fact... some of it was just people being nicewhile other activity was creepy and intrusivethat saidI am not sure if the video entirely proves the maker's point
but I get it...I am not a womanI do not know what it is to be a womanbutI think that the effort to stop any\all cross interaction between people on the street because there are troglodytes cat callingwell... that will not make our planet any more warm and fuzzy
if I walked for 10 hours in DC... I know that I would evoke a number of responses from peoplein my day to day I get remarks from peopleit is not uncommon for woman to remark on my beardor to initiate a hello on the sidewalk
I hate when I am in the park and a woman walks by and a person I am sitting near shouts out to the passerbyit brings down the group's property valueit fulfills a stereotypeit does not increase the odds of that person making contact to that woman
but...I do like to make contact with strangersmen and womanI will ride up along side another person on a bike and initiate conversationI may see a person on the sidewalk and say something as we pass
I do not believe that all interactions between strangers needs to be eliminated
in this age people are so dis-attachedthe use of electronic devices has really decreased the use of face time
in DC people shout out to other people all the timewe must rememberwe live in a society where people are not just judged by their actionsbut also by their intentions

Categories: Fixed

Former and current CGI executives deny claims in sexual harassment suit

Bicycle Retailer & Industry News - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 08:32

SAN DIEGO (BRAIN) — The former president and CEO of Competitor Group Inc. (CGI) and the company’s current senior vice president of sales are fighting a sexual harassment suit filed by a San Diego woman who formerly worked as their executive assistant.

Scott Dickey left CGI in November 2013 to become chief executive at TEN: The Enthusiast Network, owned by Source Interlink Media, which owns Bike Magazine, Powder and Surfer. Also named was John Smith, currently CGI’s senior vice president for sales. Both have denied Leah Shearer’s claims and are now embroiled in an ongoing lawsuit.

Attorneys for Shearer filed the 35-page lawsuit earlier this year in San Diego County Superior Court. Attorneys for Dickey and Smith have filed documents in response to the suit denying Shearer’s allegations. Shearer worked for CGI from June 2009 through mid-June 2013.

Attempts to reach the attorneys for comment were unsuccessful. BRAIN also sought comment on the status of the lawsuit from a spokesperson for Calera Capital, the private equity firm that owns CGI, but the spokesperson has yet to respond.

CGI is a sports marketing and management company that organizes and operates dozens of running, cycling and triathlon events. It also publishes Competitor magazine, Velo (formerly VeloNews), Triathlete and Women’s Running. It also owns VeloPress, a book publisher.

Dickey joined CGI in 2008 and later was instrumental in selling the company to Calera Capital, a firm with more than $2.8 billion under its management. It bought the San Diego company from Falconhead Capital, another private equity firm, in December 2012.

Dickey was formerly president of Transworld Business before joining CGI. Prior to that he had worked for K2 Licensed Product and had been a chief operating officer at Sundance Entertainment, marketing director for Disney Regional Entertainment, and had worked in marketing and sales with the National Basketball Association early in his career.

Smith, who helped launch Competitor magazine in 1987, has remained with the company through its sale to Calera. He has been responsible for the company’s print products as well as advertising and sales

Shearer’s attorneys, Timothy Williams and Stephanie Reynolds, told BRAIN that a trial date has been set for May 22, 2015, and that Smith has undergone an initial deposition. Depositions have yet to be scheduled for Dickey and other witnesses in the suit, Williams said.

Besides answering phone calls and emails for Dickey and Smith, Shearer claims she also booked travel for CGI executives, assisted with event planning, arranged golf outings and helped their wives with personal matters. And in 2011, Dickey and Smith gave her access to their email accounts that, at times, contained explicit and sexually suggestive photos of women, the lawsuit claims.

According to the suit, both men engaged in “pattern of unwelcome and inappropriate” remarks that increased in frequency during her four-year tenure at the company. However, she claimed that Smith engaged in inappropriate touching as well as an attempt to massage her shoulders at work, which she resisted, the suit states.

Shearer said that in 2012 she went to Dianne St. John, CGI’s director of human resources, to report the ongoing harassment. St. John allegedly told her she was “powerless to stop” their behavior. Shearer claims in her lawsuit that St. John never conducted an investigation into her allegations nor did she take any action to stop the improper behavior.

In April or May of last year when Shearer again went to St. John with additional complaints, St. John attempted to transfer her to another position and even suggested that she look for another job, Shearer claims in her complaint. Shearer left the company that June. 

Categories: News

Interview: Charlie Kelly, author of ‘Fat Tire Flyer’

VeloNews - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 08:32

Charlie Kelly rounds switchback No. 1 on the Repack downhill in December 1976.

Charlie Kelly is often recognized as one of the inventors of the modern iteration of the mountain bike. He recently published “Fat Tire Flyer” with VeloPress, which provides a firsthand account of the sport’s early days in Marin, California. Web editor Spencer Powlison spoke with Kelly in October to learn more about the book, Kelly’s experiences and how modern-day mountain biking compares to the days of the clunkers.

VeloNews: I’ve been riding mountain bikes since I was a pre-teen and I have to say, it’s pretty awesome to learn all of the little stories behind the history of it.
Charlie Kelly: I’ve had to listen to the phrase; ‘you invented the mountain bike’ for about 35 years, and it is so much more complicated than just inventing the bike. The actual hardware was there, but the sport came from just one place, and that’s basically the theme from the whole book.

VN: Along those lines, can you talk about the transition you made from being an avid road cyclist to riding on trails almost exclusively once the movement really took off?
CK: I have a very nice road bike, but I haven’t ridden it in three or four years, it’s just gathering dust, hanging from a hook on the ceiling. The transition is complete. I am mountain biker, I own a number of mountain bikes and my friends have been pretty good to me, giving me bikes over the years, but the transition is very much complete. One of the things that really inspired that transition if you will, we were really one of the only people that converted our bikes. When you just took that converted 1937 Schwinn, put it next to your Italian road bike, it wasn’t hard to see room for improvement. We just took it in the natural direction, but the impetus was that we were competing against each other, and I don’t know if any of the people that came up with the hardware came up with the competitive idea also, because that’s what really drove us, the competition.

VN: Can you talk about how racing drove the changes in equipment, as well as the Repack race and what it meant to your friends and acquaintances?
CK: You know, it was so special, it was like we were the only 15 people who could surf at Mavericks, and it was just so cool. It started out as a contest, with who is the fastest, but what it developed into was to just get in the zone and stay there. Because no matter how well you did against the competition, you only had five minutes to do whatever you felt like knowing that you had the place to yourself. For me, I was moderately competitive, although my friends were faster, but I could really just get in the zone and just stay there. I use skydiving as an analogy, where there is a big thrill, but only for a few seconds, where what we were doing, we could get that same thrill, but keep it going for a longer amount of time. We all became so passionate about it. It became dominant in our lives. We were looking for that edge all the time, studying the course, working on our bikes as much as possible, and it really took over some of our lives. It was so cool, that it was hard to think about anything else for a while, but now I’m used to it I guess! But when we first had this thing, we just couldn’t do enough of it. That’s why even when people come out here with modern equipment, they have a hard time doing the same speeds that we did on junk. Gravity is gravity. You only fall so fast, no matter what you’re on. And the difference is that we put an immense amount of study into what we were doing.

All I can say is that this took over our lives for probably two years and certainly mine. It was a place where I found a stage where I could be a star, and everyone loved me. I tell you, there is nothing more addicting than adulation.

VN: Speaking more about the bikes themselves, one of the bikes that comes out of the Repack races is the Breezer, and you’ve got a chapter in your book called ‘The most important bike of the 20th century,’ speaking about the Breezer.
CK: Well that’s an opinion and my opinion. … To begin, there are only 10 of them. I don’t know that such a small number of bikes could cause such a tectonic shift in the direction of cycling. By the time Joe built that bike, I had been at this thing for two years, so it didn’t just pop into existence. Even before Repack racing started, I realized that there was a lot of room for improvement on the bikes. Repack just accelerated that, but more importantly it got Joe Breeze interested in the project. Because yeah, I wanted something like [it], but I’m not the one to build a bike and I needed a friend who understood what I was trying to do, and well Joe Breeze was the perfect person, in the perfect place, at the right time. It took two years to get it done, eight months of building, but when those 10 bikes hit the road … We had a few people riding around on the coolest bikes in the world, and then we saw ‘garage entrepreneurs’ started to look into that market. That was the ProCruiser, Koski Brothers’ Trail Master, and then eventually Tom Ritchey. But that bike inspired three or four other people. That was the pebble coming off the top of the hill that became an avalanche, but when you look at the modern mountain bike, working your way upstream, that’s where it hits, with that Breezer bike. Maybe the safety bike inspired that kind of tectonic change, but we’re talking 20th century here.

VN: As we go down the line with the Breezer, you and Gary Fisher got involved and worked with Ritchey. From there, one of the things that I found interesting was learning about how the term ‘mountain bike’ was coined, the trouble with the trademarking and that sort of thing.
CK: The mountain bike is one of those things that, boy, who knows who said it first. I mean, we had to distinguish the difference between our road bikes and the bikes we rode on the mountain, Mt. Tamalpais, but it was at first just to distinguish our fancy road bikes to our bikes we rode off-road. … That was just a distinction that we made. I know that the first reference in print was in 1979 in reference to Gary Fisher and myself, and it was already as the company name, which was true, but at that time, it was just the common way to distinguish the bike. … It was just a common parlance in our group. Unfortunately, I can’t trace the etymology any more than that. … It was a casual conversational term up until that point, and I couldn’t really begin to identify when that first conversation took place.

VN: One thing I really enjoyed from the book was how you would go out and ride road centuries on your Ritchey mountain bike to promote the brand.
CK: Well, if you’re in a road race, you would never be competitive on a Ritchey bike, but a century isn’t a race and elementary skills and tactics will allow you to keep up just fine. With fat tires, you lose some of the acceleration, and you can’t climb as quickly, but once you get rolling out on the road, the tires don’t make that much difference. So that was a real selling point, that this guy on this bike could finish road centuries in reasonable time. I mean, I worked on being fast, I was never a competitive racer, but it wasn’t a race or competition, but everyone notices who is going fast, and these bikes made people realize that you weren’t giving up that much when riding them, and it was really fun. When you smoked a guy on a Masi, well, he knows he’s been smoked.

VN: In terms of racing, can you talk about the history behind NORBA, how that came to be?
CK: By 1983, there were at least four or five people in California promoting races for this type of bike. At that time, the [Specialized] Stumpjumper was out on the market and you could buy one in the store. So racing was becoming very popular, and it was real clear that you needed insurance to protect the race promoter. I quit promoting the Repack calendar because a guy got hurt, and the exposure was way too extreme. It’s OK if it’s your friends and no one will sue you, but if it’s full of strangers, it becomes a different story.

So the first order of business was to just find insurance so we could have races without having to put your house on the line, if you will. So insurance was the very first order of business.

Then came minor races rules. This is not road racing. What are the rules? The rules were pretty simple: You just had to wear shoes! … There had to be some form of rules because you aren’t going to get insurance without some sort of structure, so the whole thing was not so much to unify the thing, but find some common ground among the four or five people that were promoting competitive events. One of them, Victor Vicente, never wanted any part of that, he would say, “here are the rules, I say ‘go,’ first one to the finish is the winner.” I certainly understand the philosophy, I took part in it myself, but if you’re going to expand outside of our immediate circle, you need some protection.

So it started off with “how do you get insurance?” And you aren’t going to get it without an identifiable insurable party. That was the basis. The other part was rules. I didn’t want to it to be cyclocross. Cyclocross is infinitely replaceable machinery. And perhaps you’ve noticed, cyclocross bikes didn’t take over the world. They’ve been around for 75 or 80 years, and they didn’t take over the world because they have no practical value.

Because Repack had done so much to improve the machinery, we didn’t want to restrict the machinery. In our minds, we wanted to keep the, “You run what you’ve brung” mentality. When we created the rules we didn’t want the governing body to freeze the technology at a certain point. Part of the purpose of a racing organization should not be to freeze the technology at a certain point. It should be to encourage technology. The UCI basically froze the technology around 1955. … My feeling is, if you could run a recumbent successfully in a mountain bike race, then go for it! It won’t happen, but that’s an extreme example.

VN: Speaking of cyclocross, you mentioned in the book that you never wanted to see a pit with spare bikes for mountain bike racers, but now modern cross country races offer that type of outside assistance.
CK: Well, they didn’t let me make that rule, I made the other rule. By the way, the Tour de France had that same rule. Back in 1903 or whenever, the guy broke his fork, and had to forge it, but got penalized because a kid pumped the bellows. … One of the classic stories of the Tour. … Had the Tour kept that rule, mountain bikes would have arrived in 1915, but they didn’t. But one of the things is that the technology of mountain biking is no longer dependent on the “Run what you bring” kind of thing. I now own a stable of modern mountain bikes, but the price of that performance is maintenance. I understand the back-to-the land movement of singlespeeds, rigid one-speeds, because they are so much less maintenance now, but if it was up to me, it would be the old rule of, “you run what you bring” and if it breaks, then you’re walking. That is the real mountain bike experience.

VN: Are there any aspects of modern mountain biking that harken back to the days of Repack?
CK: There was something that struck me recently at Interbike. I was prowling through some of the clothing, and they are now making mountain bike jerseys that look like a flannel shirt. As I’m sure you know in all the photographs, flannel shirts, work shirts, were the style of early mountain bikers, because, “Hey man, jerseys? Are you joking?” I’m not sure what the inspiration was … but the new thing is to look like the old thing. I guess maybe it’s the freerider types. They’re the spiritual heirs. They’re the guys that don’t want rules. They will make their own rules. I mean, if you can do that stuff, man I’m not going to tell you how … [laughs]

Now and then I’ll be riding one of my new bikes down a trail, and I’ll say “Man, I rode the same trail on a bike made out of plumbing.” Almost no one in the world — maybe Joe, maybe Gary — can appreciate how far this thing came.

But if I appreciate one thing more any other with modern mountain bikes, it’s the brakes. I could live without suspension, but man disc brakes … If nothing else got invented in the last 30 years, that would have made me very happy right there. The big thing, back in the day was, “Man these things are hard to stop,” and you almost have to have done it [back then] to appreciate how great these new brakes are. Because man, stopping was almost not an option.

VN: Anything you’d like to add?
CK: All I can say is that 35 years ago I did something immensely cool, and it took 35 years to digest it, to understand it. I tried to write about this stuff then, but you actually need a modern perspective to write about it in a meaningful way. … I can now look at it with a little more jaundiced eye. I’ll tell anyone that I had the best bicycle adventure of the 20th century … and mountain biking took me places that I would never have been otherwise. I’m certainly fortunate in all the things that I got to see and do.

Fat Tire Flyer” is now available in hardcover from VeloPress.

The post Interview: Charlie Kelly, author of ‘Fat Tire Flyer’ appeared first on

Categories: News

people do not like being passed... when passing... pass on the right... that is the smart\safe\courteous way to pass

gwadzilla - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 08:22

Great Video By IntheCrossHairs from Tacchino a few years I am expressing my displeasure with being passedthis morning I was not as expressivebut I was a tad grumpy
at a stop light waiting for the light to turn greenjust as the light turned green... I was passed on my right by a casual paced cyclist
looked like a cyclist in business casual on his commuter bike
Dana Wolfe HATED being passed on the rightwell... I hate being passed... which makes me really hate being passed on the right
passed on the right without an audible?the audible should be the basic courtesy in traffic when dealing with bike on bike interactionI can see that there are times when passing on the right would make sensein this case... I think that the other cyclist just caught me off guard and grumpy
but...I would prefer to be passed on the leftandI would like an audible when being passed
the funny thing... after I asked this guy to pass on the right he started micromanaging my behaviorwe were not talking about wearing headphones, stopping at red lights, riding or not riding on the sidewalkmy point was on passing on the right versus passing on the leftsorry if we got confusedI appreciate this guy pushing things to my favorite topic... MEbut we were not really talking about me or himwe were talking about appropriate passing
fantastic... chase these links
Categories: Fixed

simon riviere

Milano Fixed - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 08:18
Categories: Fixed

Another Hour Record Attempt Tonight

Bike Hugger - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 08:12

Another hour record tonight from Scott Sports and Matthias Brändle, an Austrian rider with the Swiss UCI Professional Continental Team IAM Cycling.

Categories: Culture

Today’s Headlines

Streetsblog New York City - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 07:59
  • MTA Bus Driver Kills Man at Same Intersection Where Ella Bandes Was Killed in 2013 (WNBC, WPIX)
  • Cement Truck Driver Kills Man Crossing Northern Boulevard in Astoria (WCBS, WNBC)
  • Turning Driver Injures Elderly Man Crossing Cadman Plaza West at Clark Street (Bklyn Daily Eagle)
  • The Times Editorial Board Is Pleased With the Citi Bike Deal
  • Teen Driver Who Killed Ariel Russo Indicted on New Charges for Dragging Cop With His Car (News)
  • No Charges Yet: NYPD Seeks Witnesses of the Crash That Killed Sui Leung (Bowery Boogie)
  • Trottenberg Opposes Council Bill to Give Free Parking at End of Meter Hours (News, Post)
  • Bushwick’s 83rd Precinct Credits Safety Checkpoints With Increase in DWI Arrests (DNA)
  • Bklyn DA Charges Two Drivers for DWI, Manslaughter After Crash That Killed Passenger (WCBS)
  • DOT Finishes Installing Traffic Calming on Park Avenue in Clinton Hill (Myrtle Av Bklyn Partnership)
  • At a Venerable Newspaper, a Victory in the War on Cars (CapNY)

More headlines at Streetsblog USA

Categories: Culture

ci faccio solo casa-ufficio

Milano Fixed - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 07:54
Categories: Fixed

Stoopidtaller – The Making of the World’s Tallest Bicycle

Urban Velo - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 07:54

We covered Stoopidtall, Richie Trimble’s 14.5 ft tall bike that reigned supreme at CicLAvia in Urban Velo #37, and he has since followed it up with the 20 ft tall Stoopidtaller. This video gives us all a look at the building and riding of Stoopidtaller, now officially a Guinness World Record holder as the tallest rideable bicycle.

Categories: Fixed

Brajkovic joins UnitedHealthcare through 2016

VeloNews - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 07:52

Janez Brajkovic is a strong time trailer and can also compete for general classification wins. Photo: Tim De Waele |

Janez Brajkovic has signed a two-year deal with UnitedHealthcare, the team announced late Wednesday.

Brajkovic, who first turned professional in 2005, has won three stage races during his career, one world title, and one national title. Now 30, he brings a wealth of experience to the U.S.-based Pro Continental team.

“I’m very excited to join the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team. I’m extremely motivated and I know we’ll have great years together,” Brajkovic said in a press release. “I’m ready to lead when appropriate, and also to work for my new team as the race and situation demands it. Teamwork is a very strong component with this program and I’m looking forward to contributing to that.”

The team added that Brajkovic’s goals for 2015 will be competing in weeklong stage races in Europe and the United States, including the Amgen Tour of California, the Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah, and the USA Pro Challenge.

A strong time trialer, Brajkovic was the 2004 world under-23 champion in the discipline. He also won the 2011 Slovenian national time trial title.

In stage racing, Brajkovic has a trio of victories: the 2007 Tour of Georgia, the 2010 Critérium du Dauphiné, and the 2012 Tour of Slovenia. He finished second and fourth in two stages at the 2006 Vuelta a Espana and held the leader’s jersey for two days.

In 2012, Brajkovic rode to ninth in the Tour de France.

“Jani was looking for a team where he could be a leader and get back to his winning ways, where teamwork is a primary focus. An atmosphere in which the team will rally behind him and one that he can also give back to,” general manager Mike Tamayo said. “We can provide that tight-knit community and level of support to get Jani back to a place where he is winning races. He’s a great fit for the UnitedHealthcare Pro Cycling Team, as a rider and a personality.”

The post Brajkovic joins UnitedHealthcare through 2016 appeared first on

Categories: News

pic of the day

Milano Fixed - Thu, 10/30/2014 - 07:30
Categories: Fixed
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