Monthly Archives: August 2009

Commuting on the old beast

All bikes are in England now, apart from my 1994 Kona. I pulled it out of the garage, and have commuted on it the past two days. It needs some love though! I have changed the cables, and just ordered a new chain and cassette. Actually, it isn’t as old as you would think… having last been rebuilt with XT in 2004, that is still 5 years ago though.

Last night we were at a colleagues place for a BBQ. I like this sort of German meat fest that they have, with free flowing beer. It was a bit male heavy though (8 guys, 2 girls) and the conversation for the most part was bike related.

Let’s see how quickly the cassette gets here, the chain is way too short having snapped previously, and until I swap it, I think it is a really bad idea to ride off road!

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Germany Looms

Today is my last day in the UK before flying back to Germany for a couple of weeks. The more time I am in England, the more it feels like home again, and that going to Germany is ripping me away from everything. That is pretty dramatic, and perhaps I should calm down a bit!

It has been an interesting couple of weeks, with travel (Denmark), racing, riding, crashing – yes, lots of crashing, babies and Spotify!

Those of you not familiar with Spotify, it is amazing. Like iTunes, but free and completely legal. Download it now.

I have been listening to Little Boots (I have to buy this CD) and the Kinks, but pretty much anything is on there.

Yesterday I cleaned the bikes, filed off the lawyer tabs on a pair of Maguras and Rock Shox (was this a good idea? Bare Magnesium will oxidize and corrode?) polished and put them all away.

As of tomorrow, I am back to two weeks of rigid Kona! Should be fun.

Wiltshire Riding

Got a 50km loop in today in 24 – 30 degree heat.  Wiltshire is undulating and the roads are for the most part quiet.  My loop took me past Stourhead Gardens, the on to Longleat where climbing the hill out of the grounds you can look over and see Giraffes amongst over animals in the Safari Park.

What was also nice for me was riding all around my old haunts, it really took me back to being a teenager.

A few pictures for you….

Longleat, or somewhere in Iraq

Longleat, or somewhere in Iraq

Another reason to be in the UK

Actually two of them. A new nephew and a new niece were born within three hours of each other within The Pretty One’s and my families. Today, I jumped in the car and drove down to congratulate my brother and his wife on their new addition. The first Heir of the Worksrider family!

In case you were worried, I chucked a bike in the car too, for a cheeky ride around tomorrow!

Fat Tyre Buzz

There is a thing about being spoilt and having a selection of bikes. To be honest though, I don’t feel that spoilt as I did buy them all! That aside, if, like me, you started as a mountain biker, and took many years to get into road cycling, then you might be able to relate.

Yesterday I went for my mid week ride with Trevor. He was riding well, and seems fresh and ready to go following his 24hr podium. I am trying to get a little fitness, and having ridden 3 or 4 times recently with The Pretty One I am beginning to get there.

My decision yesterday was that I would ride to the meeting point, and then start the ride from there. I had been told that it was 13miles, which sounded reasonable. It was 16 miles in the end, but the main point of what I am writing is this.

Riding a mountain bike on the road isn’t ideal! I know that it is good training and if you are double hard like Jeff you can do it, but I would prefer not to! I chose the hardtail, with Conti Race Kings, because they roll so well. After the road bike though, this setup will always feel really sluggish, and trying to TT to the meeting point I was sorely missing the road bike. The route included a few long straight uphill sections, and is traffic heavy with commuter traffic which passes mere cms from my bar ends. It was a case of tucking in, ducking down and concentrating on turning the gears. The wind was against me too, so the 17.5mph average was extremely good work.

Once in the woods though, the bike came alive again, and all was forgiven. The singletrack was twisty and demanding like always, and my nerves aren’t as strong as they have been following my face plant last week. Also, the race king tyres met their limits on some of the more polished compacted gravel sections, where the small knobs of the profile couldn’t get traction and the front end was a ‘little’ wishy washy.

50km on a school night is a good effort in my lardy arsed opinion.

Thanks to Trevor for bringing me home too.