Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Smokey Rules

Our lil puppy rocks!

Smokey, at 6 months, playing with Freaky

Puppy luvin,
Kristy Kreme

Another Surly Affair

Surly Jones hit Block E downtown for the first (and maybe last) time ever last Friday to play the Ugly Mug.

The weather was hot and the doors were wide open as the crue rocked out some b1tchin' 70's tunes.

Daffknee and Daisy were the bomb...

And Coach, Daffknee, Farrah, and Daisy couldn't help but shake it to Gin n' Juice.

Unfortunately, some A-holes turned the night sour fast, but everyone's safe and accounted for. Next time, we'll all be sure to avoid Block E and kick it Station Wagon Style somewhere better.

Surly Gurly,
Daisy Jones

Falling in love with my little white fox

Last Thursday kicked off the "Thursday Nite Buck Hill" races and the event was awesome! Perfect weather, dry trails, and my hot new mtn. bike made the night perfect.

Just hours before, Hollywood swapped out my old, re-welded-together Tomac frame that Chucker had given me, for my new hot, white Tomac Cortez... a 26" hardtail, aluminum dream! All pristine and white, the matching everything completely steals your eyes away from all my hand-me-down parts that I still haven't upgraded. Uncle Sam may have given me enough to buy the new frame and fork, but he kept my crankset money.... grrrr.
I was just a fraction tentative about riding the new 'Little White Fox' for the first time at a race, but she flew threw my warm up lap so gracefully, it all melted away. Dork that I am, I got a pretty dull starting position, but was able to get her up the climb fast enough to be about the 4th woman into the trees. Once I was there, though, I felt so very at home. She was light and responsive, and floated effortlessly below me as I bombed downhills that last year I had to walk down. It was so exhilirating!

Not knowing how I finished, I was shocked as heck when my name was called for third place!!! YOWZA! Last year I couldn't even ride the whole course without having to walk certain sections, but this time I rode everything! So much fun!

To follow it up, we headed out to the Freewheel Frolic on Saturday for another warm sunny day of racing. Unknown to Hwood and I though, a storm was headed our way and ready to bombard my race with rain, thunder and lightning. After an hour and a half delay due to all the lightning, the races started up again on a crazy muddy course.

At the start, I took the hole-shot and led the gals through the prologue. As we returned to the line to start our first lap my teammates Desta and Sophia and another girl came around me, headed for the left turn into the single track. Desta was the first to arrive and find out exactly how slippery it was, washing out in 3 inches of slick, sloppy mud and causing the rest of the group to grab handfuls of disc brakes.

Sophie and I turned into the single track without hesitation and fishtailed like crazy around every turn... well, every straight-away too for that matter. It was unbelievably slippery, watching the riders we caught either struggle through the mud, or lose the fight and slide out completely. We were covered in mud - feeling in drop into the vents of our helmets, whip up onto your back, in our ears and mouth.... everywhere.

But it was awesome! I just kept thinking of how much it reminded me of riding snowy trails this winter and was overwhelmed with gratitude for all the things my husband taught me during those rides. The mud wasn't a burden or an annoyance... it was a blast! I'm not saying it was easy at all, but it was fun as hell so the challenge only made it better.

My front derailleur gotta lil dirty

Well, heck, the whole fox did.... but she sure looks hot wearin' the hardware!
The best part of having so much fun, was taking home another 3rd place finish! That, and a now-40-lb.-bike. Holy crap! There was so much mud on my bike that my front derailleur quit shifting after a lap, leaving me in my bad-a$$ big ring. By the last climb of my final lap, I was single-speeding it as my rear derailleur got too jammed to move too. Did I mention how awesome it was?!

My teammate Sophie sealed the win, and Desta came up with a fast 5th place finish. Hwood even rode awesome in the much less muddy Expert race, taking 10th overall and winning his age group. Too bad he felt the need to flash his wiener on the podium....

I love my Little White Fox!
Kristy Kreme

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Surly Jones Rocks the House at Lee's

Friday nite Hwood and I ducked out to join the crue at the Surly Jones & E.L.N.o. show at Lee's Liquor Lounge. The show rocked!!! As I've said time and time again, if you haven't seen them, what's wrong with you?! And if you have... see ya at the next show!!!
The whole crue rocked their a$$es off and got the entire crowd fired up and ready to go. I've never seen so many dudes on the dance floor!
I did my part as a retro Surly Gurl... love the tan lines?
It was awesome!

Surly Gurly,
Kristy Kreme

3-Point Ride

Saturday, Hwood and I packed up the weiner and hit the road for the Marty road race. Smokey couldn't resist the urge for driving lessons....
Although the winds were whipping up to 25mph, we saddled up and rode ourselves to the line with mere seconds to spare to get in on time. The turnout for the women's race was fabulous, but there was little cooperation as we headed into the wind.

The riders strung out along the center line, single file, pushing 28 mph and ripping my haven't-warmed-up-yet legs off. At 4.5 miles in, we turned a corner back into the headwind and the pocket I tucked myself into collapsed in on itself and a half dozen gals covered the road from ditch to ditch. I veered the Princess into the left side ditch to avoid running over one of my comrades and, by the time I assessed the situation and turned to see the remainder of the field, they were a kilometer or so up the road.

Without second thought, I charged after them, trying desparately to get my bike over 16mph in the strong winds. I chased for a mile or two before I realized it was useless... I was alone... and there were 38 miles to go. It was my longest time trial ever..... and somehow I didn't let myself give up.

Sure, there were moments when I wanted to quit.... but then they'd be followed by me imagining I was Fabian Cancellera, storming through the Belgian countryside on a solo TT in front of the field as I was forcing my bike up to 37 mph on the back side of the course. It was awesome! And I held off a few riders for the entirety, pulling in a decent 10th place finish. But I worked my ass off and never gave up.... the pride in that has stuck with me much more than the beating my ego took so early in the race.

To make up for some shortcomings on the road, I finished off my weekend railing the trails at Theodore Wirth. Practicing this winter with Hwood, riding at night or in the snow, or even riding snow at night, taught me tons! I learned a little body English to get me between the trees, how to look ahead, let the bike float, and even how to tackle a challenge with a little less fear.

So, when Wheels came and grabbed me for an afternoon in the dirt, I was ready. My first lap was mild as we warmed up and Wheels took a moment here and there to make me redo the obstacles I tried to walk over. (THANKS!) Then, for lap two, we ramped it up a bit as Wheels pushed harder and I tried to keep up. Come lap three, I was ready to tackle all the log piles and rocks and laugh at my previous hesitations....and I did.

I laughed at myself when I tipped over on the rock garden climb, still pedaling on the way down in some attempt to pull out of it. It knocked my rear derailuer a little out of whack, but I survived it, so who cares, eh? So we pressed on and kept pushing to ride faster and smoother.

With a load of confidence and new techniques to practice, I charged through a sandy left turn with just a little too much heat and not enough control, washing out my bike as though I was trying to steal home. Knowing it was going to hurt later, and reassured that all my arms and legs still worked, I jumped right back on my bike and kept going.

But the reaction when we got to all the other riders at the head of the trail made me realize I looked a little ragged. Blood had started to seep through the hip of my shorts and the blood dripping down my knee was more than obvious. My arm, which I thought was just dirty, revealed itself once I finally jumped in the shower and had to scrub the dirt out of the cuts.
Crazy thing is, I was grinning from ear to ear... man I love the dirt! Can't wait for the first mountain bike race!!!!! Until then, I'm just trying to get my body to heal up so I don't walk so silly and flinch every time I use an arm rest.

Limpin' around,