Wednesday, July 26, 2006

hill-ride writeup and scouting report

for a variety of reasons, mostly cowardice, i opted to do a hill ride yesterday, rather than the rahway practice race. this is my first time on anything steeper than a highway overpass since a duathlon in april and a long time off the bike, and so i was looking for some motivation. luckily, brandi, mike, and jay were willing to accompany/pull/taunt me.

we rode hills. it was sweet torture. ride writeup over.

now here's my scouting report. this team's got a bright future.
  • will: after a deal was made in a dim, smoky backroom of a small italian restaurant, cornell traded will to us in exchange for a promise to stop making fun of them. his results in the ECCC last year were pretty good (understatement), and while not many of us have had a chance to ride with him regularly this year, his ability to handle in a pack while being mauled by a squirrel are not to be taken lightly (see photographic proof, left). i expect that he will be an asset to the team, if only as a rabid sprinter (puns! on so many levels!).
  • mike: so what if he doesn't technically attend rutgers? mike's been racing in scarlet for at least the year i've been here, tearing up mountain bike courses and frightening small woodland creatures. well, i've got news, boys and girls: mike's got a road bike now. i've ridden offroad with him in the past, but he and charlie would drop me too fast for me to really gauge how fast he is. now that i've ridden hills with him, i can see that mike may be pretty freakin talented. i'm calling it now: mike will podium in one of his first few 'cross races.
  • brandi: after a year of mixing it up with a crooked helmet, sneakers, and exercise-induced asthma, brandi has established herself as one of the tougher members of the team. i hope i'm not spoiling the surprise when i inform you all that brandi has circumvented all of these obstacles. that's right, with a new helmet, an official diagnosis, and CLIPLESS freaking PEDALS, brandi is going to be a force to be reckoned with.
  • mark: because of (perhaps despite?) his rampant success at spring crits, our mutton-chopped, angry-faced friend has turned himself into a stage racer. now he uses words like "GC" and "ITT", neither of which are actually words. dude was fast before... now i'm just plain intimidated. my prediction: success on the sunday of every weekend; whereas everyone else will be burned out from saturday racing, marky fresh will have learned to recover quickly.
  • jay: it's fun to make light of jay, because he's so good natured. when you mock his hairy legs, he doesn't get angry. when you attack his handling skills (who crashes at six mile run?), he doesn't seem hurt. when you threaten him for not riding aggressively enough at a mountain bike race, he doesn't brood. what does he do instead? he gets fast. uh oh... jay learned how to ride a road bike. his cadence is higher, his line is smoother, and he's turned into a hairy little mountain goat! now if he can just lift the bike before going over the barriers, he's going to terrorize the MAC 'cross races.
  • dark horses: apparently we have a million new team members. as soon as we get them jerseys (i'm working on it!), there is going to be a swarm of scarlet all over central new jersey. based on absolutely nothing more than emails, i'm predicting that one of the incoming freshman is going to be the next tyler hamilton (minus the blood doping).
so there you have it. now all that's left to say is, "is it 'cross season yet?"

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