Sunday, April 30, 2006

Easterns wrap up

What a crazy weekend!

The intrepid RU crew made the trip to Ithaca, NY for the Eastern Collegiate Cycling Championship this weekend.

The road race on Saturday was promised to be difficult and difficult it was. 1600 feet of climbing per lap took its toll, but Brandi had a breakthrough ride for 16th in the womens C. Dave also had an amazing ride to finish 12th in the men's D. In the Cs, Mark decided to take it easy and finished 48th. Lori had a difficult day with some cramping to finish 7th.

Sunday, Dave and Brandi headed back to NJ. Lori and Mark remained behind to contest the criterium. With the brutality of the road race, Lori was afraid she had gotten herself sick again and opted to sit the crit out. Mark found some legs to finish 12th in a blisteringly fast race.

Special thanks to Cornell rider Vanya and his family for putting us up and feeding us this weekend.

With this race, the RU collegiate road team wraps up another successful season. Racing continues next week as some of the team head to Wawayanda State Park for the first Campmor H2H mountain bike series race.

Thursday, April 27, 2006


We're just one weekend away from the Collegiate National Championships in Kansas, and the ever eager RU team is in action once again in hilly Ithaca, NY for the Eastern Collegiate Championship weekend hosted by Cornell and Ithaca College.

Looking to tackle the hills this weekend, Lori, Dave, Brandi, and Mark look to be in good form as they tackle a brutal road race course on Saturday (1600 ft of climbing per lap!) and a fast and technical criterium on Sunday.

Both Dave and Brandi have had a spectactular first season on the road for Rutgers Cycling and this weekend will bring a close to their first collegiate season. Look for Dave on the mountain bike in the Mid-Atlantic Super Series this spring and summer where he'll join the rest of the RU mountain bike crew.

Coming back from illness that kept her from racing Army, Lori returns this weekend still in the hunt as she is ranked 9th overall in the conference. With one week to go to Nationals, this will be her final test of form.

This weekend is a sort of a homecoming for Ithaca College alumnus Mark who is also returning to collegiate road racing for the first time since the Grant's Tomb Criterium in March. After this weekend, Mark will turn his attention to the dirt and join the dominant Rutgers Mid-Atlantic Super Series team in its 2006 campaign for even more podium spots.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Army Day 1 race report

From Chris' race report:

So Brandi, Ted, Dave, and myself headed out to West Point despite
the not so joyous weather conditions. We all finally got there
around 9ish and set up our trainers in what we thought was a primo
spot, which turned out to be right in the cross wind of the spot-a-
pot. After The TTT, and a hour delay on all of our starts, we were
ready to get going. As it turned out all races were cut by one lap
of the 14 mile loop, accept for the C's, I think they were scheduled
for 2 laps and I know they did 2 laps. To prevent any headlines in
tomorrows paper reading, "Mass Death of Beginner Cyclists on Hill at
West Point" the Men's D and C racers, as well as the women's B
racers, had to take the dreaded downhill behind a pace car going a
blazing 10 mph, this was possibly harder than actually taking the
hill at speed, but did prevent any accidents. So after the downhill,
we began the climb back up and then endured the rolling hills of
West Point. All and all, we fared pretty well, keeping to the
rutgers motto, "We may not always come in first, but we never come
in last". The best result of the day was ted, taking home 38th in
the C's (he did it for his mommy!!!). Dave was around the middle of
the D pack with 49th place, Brandi also did very well in women B's,
although I don't know here exact place (sorry brandi), and I
finished 57th, after crashing due to massive crampage in my legs, I
forgot my banana this morining (damn bananas!!!!). After we changed,
ate some awesome vegitarian chillie made by ted's parents, who rock,
with a very cold team from Hamilton, and watched an awesome sprint
finish by a huge group of B riders, we decided we better head home,
which was probably wise since we had no place to stay tonight.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Running of the Dogs Results

It was a long time coming, but the RoTD results have been posted and RU cycling did very well. Dave tied for first in the beginner solo men, Charlie finished 4th in the super competitive open single speed, Alicia and I apparently won the coed duo category, but the results don't seem to bear that out.

This weekend Charlie, (maybe) Alessandro, and I head to French Creek for the first MASS race of the season while the road crew of Blake, Ted, Lori, Dave, Dan, Brandi, et al. head to West Point for the Army Classic Weekend.

On the road and on the dirt, RU is poised to have another great weekend!

Monday, April 10, 2006

what i learned this weekend

having attended both races this weekend (Running of the Dogs as a soigneur, the Ten Dollar Duathlon as an untrained competitor) with absolutely zero ambition, i made it a point to learn as much as possible. the following is a list of lessons i compiled over the course of the weekend.

Running of the Dogs
- gritty mud will destroy disc brake pads, says dave
- ramming into a tree is not an acceptable alternative to braking, says mike's hip
- knee warmers would be good things when racing in sub-freezing rain/sleet, say alessandro and ted
- "sexy cream", aka warming lotion, is a misnomer and should be used sparingly, lest an uncomfortable, unsexy burning sensation afflict the user, says (nay, screams) ted
- mud breaks bike components and sleet breaks spirits, say the majority of saturday's racers
- anyone who finished the race (Charlie, Alessandro, Dave, Mark, and Alicia) is awesome and deserves congratulations
- anyone who started the race is a brave fool and deserves a combination of congratulations and pity
- anyone who spectated the race is just plain stupid
- i am NEVER soigneuring again unless it's 60+ and sunny, says don, emphatically

Ten Dollar Duathlon
- starting 2 minutes after everyone else because you slept in takes a lot of pressure off
- running is fun when you have a cross bike on your shoulder
- running is not as fun when you've run twice so far this year (but it's still pretty damn fun)
- there's a reason triathletes practice their transitions
- losing time to help another racer fix a flat in transition is totally worth it
- losing time because you made a wrong turn is just plain embarrassing (thanks for the save, heather!)
- it's really hard to not draft when every training ride and race has been crit or crit-oriented... you just latch on without even thinking
- running 2 miles is an improper post-TT cooldown
- heather can sprint! she chased down some other girl over the run and took her in the last 10m with a killer kick
- a chamois is great for riding, but is, um, sub-optimal for running
- our jerseys look pretty freakin awesome

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Dan's Race Report

From Dan:

"I guess I'll take this opportunity to write a report for the weekend. So first of all, let me start by saying that everything driving oriented in Mass. is a catastrophy. I stayed in Cambridge at my friends dormroom. On the way there, there was one instance where I went down a one way street. At the end of this street, there were only other one way streets, and they all pointed the wrong way!!! I was trapped! With such haphazard road planning, naturally the drivers in this state drive in an equally confused and perilous fashion. . .
but I digress. . .
this is about cycling.

So after following pretty lousy directions, I found the road race and met up with Lori. The start to the race was just as confusing as everything else so far encountered. About 300 some riders from every category gathered into one big formless mass. I stayed around some other C riders to make sure I was in the right place, and before I knew it a start had happened, and we were off. . .and I was in the very back of the pack unfortunately. The yellow line rule was in effect, and with 100 riders, it was awful hard to advance.
The course was very nice with many ups and downs (you know... hills), and lots of really fast sections. Unfortunately, it was FULL of potholes, ditches, and various other obstacles which undoubtably claimed a few cyclists). At the beginning of the second lap, (each of which was 14+ miles, the total race coming in about 45 miles), there was a GIGANTIC crash on the uphill. It separated the field, and with my unfortunate starting position, I was one of those cut off from the lead group.
The rest of the race was devoted to playing catch up, and I did just that. I think I was in about dead last place, and I forced myself to suffer as much as possible until I caught some people. Before I knew it, I had a collected an Army guy and a Umass guy and we started a paceline taking about 30 second pulls. The Army guy had no legs for hills, but was really fast on the flats, so I ended up pulling on most of the hills (but trust me, this was not that much better. . .if it weren't for washington rock repeats, I'd have been in big trouble) By the third lap we caught another group of about 7 riders, and things were looking up.
Anyway, those in charge of this race thought it a good idea to add an extra uphill sprint before letting us finish. When approaching this hill, I thought back to the lehigh crit and the cycling workshop I attended with ted. We had discussed when to attack. Following their advice I waited until we were 3/4 up the hill, and I put the proverbial pedal to the medal. At this point I passed about 5 guys or so, and maintained it most of the way to the end riding next to a really nice guy from Delaware who had this to say: "Well, looks like it's just you and me, ready to duke it out?" . . . to which I replied :
" *gasp*, *cough*, *grunt*, *pant*, "it's. . .all. . .you. . .buddy. . "

He went on to finish of me, but fortunately I maintained most of the space I created on that hill.

After all of that. . .I got 48th??!?!? Doesn't sound so great, but I'm more than happy with it. I had a great time, and I kept my bike up during the race (although I did take an unfortunate spill in the parking lot of all places, re-injuring my elbow in the exact same spot as the Bucknell incident. . .this, I'd rather not discuss any further!)
As for the Sunday crit. I was pre-reg'd, but staying with friends I had a little bit too much fun that sat night. Ended up sleeping in and getting dim sum in the morning. I think it was for the better.
And that, dear team, is my race report.

See ya'll on the road (mountain?) this week.

What a weekend!

Wow! Rutgers did an awful lot of racing this weekend.

On the road front, Lori and Dan headed up to the legendary Boston Beanpot Classic. In the crit, Lori once again had a heck of a ride to finish 5th. In the road race, she put in another great ride to finish 11th. Dan put in a brave ride in the road race to finish 48th.

In the dirt, the Rutgers mountain bike team tested its endurance and cold weather toughness at Kittatinny State Park at Team Bulldog's Running of the Dogs. Cold rain greeted the 9 deep RU crew. Early on rain turned to sleet. The sleet gave way to snow. Mechanicals were the order of the day as Ted lost his derailleur in the mud and snow, Mike lost his brakes, Jay lost his brakes, Alicia lost her brakes, Dave lost his brakes. Charlie rocked out 5 laps on the single speed. Alessandro did so many he lost count. Alicia and Mark finished 2nd in the coed beginner category with 2 laps. Dave put in an impressive 3 laps. Mark was so smitten with the course he took an extra lap.

Dave and Ted rode their first mountain bike race in brutal conditions. Way to go!

Biggest thanks on the day go to Don for braving the weather as soigneur extraordinare and he wasn't even racing!

Next weekend RU is in action on the road at Mercyhurst College... featuring a race on a NASCAR track!

Friday, April 07, 2006

RU Split weekend

For the first time this season, RU Cycling will be dividing its forces between road and mountain bike racing.

Dan and Lori continue the collegiate road campaign and are heading up to Boston for the Beanpot weekend.

Closer to home, Charlie, Dave, Alessandro, Alicia, Mark, Mike, Jay, Ted, and soigneur Don head to Kittatinny State Park to kick off the mountain bike season in style with Team Bulldog's "Running of the Dogs."

On both fronts, look for Rutgers to ride strong with Lori continuing to tear up the road races and some of the furry-legged set coming out of winter hibernation and looking to lay the smack down in Kittatinny.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Penn State Weekend

With most of the RU crew at the Sandy Hook TT this weekend, Lori was flying the Rutgers flag solo at PSU.

Without her fabulous cheering squad, Lori still put in impressive rides to finish 5th in the women's A criterium and 19th in the women's A road race.

Way to go Lori!!