Monday, August 27, 2012

2012 US Pro Cycling Challenge



 By Bob

            The best pros in the world were back in Colorado this year and this time they were even closer to home when Stage One started in Durango and ended in Telluride.  A report: 

1.     MORE DRAMA THAN A DAYTIME SOAP.  Before we turn to Colorado we have some breaking news closer to home.  A couple of months ago Lloyd Ellis (more on this guy real soon) came up with the McGaffey Challenge.  I can hear the groans.  I know.  Nobody cares about the McGaffey Challenge but Dirk Hollebeek and Chuck Van Drunen.  I know. The McGaffey Challenge has created more drama than a daytime soap.  I know.  Before this is over it’s going to make the Hatfields and the McCoys look like kissing cousins.  But anyway, here is the latest news.  Chuck went out solo (yeah, solo) on a calm morning earlier this week and took 18 seconds out of Dirk’s standing record.  Rumor has it that all this drama is making Bob reconsider his normal brackets for the back yard pursuit races this year.  Each year, like clockwork, Bob announces the first round matchup of “Chuck versus Dirk”.   We have an inside source who tells us that Bob is really going to shake things up and instead of “Chuck versus Dirk” this year, the first round matchup with be “Dirk versus Chuck”. 

2.     THREE DAYS-THREE BIG RIDES.  Last Saturday, Peter Tempest raced in a 60 mile race in Durango to help ride in a new trail system.  After 50 miles the race was called after a downpour left the course super slick.  Only 10 miles away Bob Rosebrough was bone dry on the southern end of the Colorado Trail on an exploratory ride from the Junction Creek trail head.  On Sunday, Bob and Peter rode a route from Molas Pass to Cascade Creek that starts with a 10 mile section of trail above timberline that climbs to over 12,000 feet in elevation.  Bob had originally planned a ride that came out at Coal Bank Pass but they changed their plans at the suggestion of Lloyd (yep, him again) who suggested a “sweet ride” down Engine Creek to Cascade Creek. On Monday, Peter took Bob on a big loop that starts with the newly designed Prospect Trail at Telluride and drops down in the Illium Valley before climbing back up to Society Turn. 

3.     LLOYD MAKES THE BLOG.  Rez dogs we need to have a talk about this Lloyd Ellis guy.  You know the guy.  The really nice guy with the gentlemanly southern accent and manners.  Here is what I want to know.  Why is such a nice guy so intent on inflicting such pain on his fellow dogs?  We all know that Lloyd’s McGaffey Challenge has caused immeasurable emotional pain and physical suffering.  Half way down Lloyd’s Engine Creek route, Peter said to Bob, “I think you need to say something about Lloyd and this route.  This makes the descent to Grasshopper from Lost Lake Rim look like a piece of cake and I caught all kinds of grief for that one.”  Bob slowly getting up from his second-slow-motion-6’7”-235 pounds-over-the-bars fall said, “Don’t worry.  Lloyd has definitely made the blog!”  Simply put, Lloyd’s “sweet” route is one of the most epic descents in Colorado with big drops, big rocks, deadfall trees and major exposure.  It took Peter and Bob 5 full hours to finish a 20 mile route.  Or if you do the math: 4 mph!! 

4.     THE SCENE IN TELLURIDE.  The finish of Stage One in Telluride was pretty cool.  A big break had a gap of 1:30 at the base of the Lizard Head climb.  After Lizard Head the break was reduced to four including Danielson, Stetina, Nibali and Beltran.  After the Alta Lakes climb Danielson and Stetina (both from Garmin) were alone with a 30 second lead, but they got swallowed up between Society Turn and downtown Telluride.  Tyler Farrar (also from Garmin) took the sprint.  The intimacy of downtown Telluride made the finish and post finish festivities special.  Peter was talking to Frankie Andreau and shaking hands with Bob Roll.  After the finish, all the big riders were just within feet of the crowd.  

CONCLUDING QUESTION.  Brace yourself.  There’s a pretty wild rumor floating around out there.  Is it true that the Bread Springs sheep – after reading the Crested Butte blog about the hot blonde in the Ferrari threatening to sue Peter – is now shopping around for a lawyer?  

Crested Butte

By Bob

                        Paul and Sara Berry organized a great trip to Crested Butte a few weeks ago (warning:  the facts on this blog are always sketchy and they may  be even sketchier than usual because of the delay) that featured some great rides, Night Guy’s mandatory late night CB escapades and some long overdue revelations by Peter.  Along for the trip with Paul and Sara were Chuck, Jenny, Maggie and Zach Van Drunen; Bob, Brenda and Amy Rosebrough; Peter Tempest; Paul’s buddy, ‘Durango Andy” and Andy “Bobcat” Stravers as a last minute surprise guest.  A report:

1.     PETER FINALLY COMES CLEAN – AND MORE.   For at least two years now we have all been consumed by one overriding question:  “How in the world is it possible to T-bone a sheep on a road bike?”  Well, over pizza and a beer in downtown Crested Butte, Peter finally came clean and here is how he says it all went down:  “I was out on the Bread Springs loop and I had a pack of dogs after me that I was trying to ditch.  I was going down a hill and I just felt like I had gotten away from the dogs.  There were sheep on both sides of the road and all of a sudden the flock merged on the road right in front of me.  I was probably going over 25 mph and the sheep completely covered the road.  I had no choice.  I hit a sheep that was probably about 120 pounds broadside and went over the bars.  I was lying on the pavement surrounded by the dogs.  Both the dogs and I just looked at each other wondering ‘What happens next?’  I managed to get up and fight the dogs off.  I was hurt pretty bad, but the sheep just scampered off.  I broke my frame and some ribs.  I had trouble walking for a couple of weeks and couldn’t roll over or turn in bed for over a week.”  Peter must have been in the mood to bare his soul because he then went on to make a shocking and unexpected new revelation that we will come back to when we get to our concluding questions. 

2.      BAITING CHUCK AND THE BOBCAT’S SURPRISE ENTRANCE.  As usual, the conversation revolved around Chuck well before Chuck even arrived.  Paul and Durango Andy were hatching schemes to bait Chuck into buying Durango Andy’s snowmobiles and/or to become a franchise dealer of remote control miniature helicopters.  When Chuck and family arrived Paul and Durango Andy made a full court press, but Chuck was just nibbling and never swallowed the bait.  Soon word filtered in that Bobcat had aborted a trip to Kansas (Kansas in heat of late July???) and was making an emergency escape from the blast furnace. Predictably Andy’s appearance led to a mad search for night lights and Chuck’s now traditional night ride of Crested Butte.  Inexplicably, both Chuck and Bobcat were close lipped about this year’s escapades.

3.     IT’S TOO LATE AND YOU CAN’T STOP.   Paul, Durango Andy and Bob did a rock garden extravaganza ride Monday night. They thought they were going out for a tune up ride and ended up taking an epic thrashing on the Upper Loop and the Upper, Upper Loops.  On Tuesday, Bob snuck out with his trademarked head start (Bob was out the door well before Morning Guy made an appearance) on Paul, Peter, Chuck and Durango Andy on the Deer Creek Trail loop which climbs high on dirt roads and makes a spectacular, high traverse before making one of Crested Butte’s epic descents toward Gothic.  On Wednesday, Peter, Paul, Bobcat and Durango Andy did the 804 (they combined the 403 trail and the world famous 401 trail) while Bob went zip lining with Amy and then snuck out of town.  Peter’s comment about the 403 descent:  “It is steeper than I would normally ride, but by the time you realize how steep it is, it’s too late and you can’t stop.”  We have reports of a major fireworks show on the climb up to the top of the 401 with Bobcat, Paul, Chuck and Peter all taking turns at dealing the pain.   

A CONCLUDING QUESTIONS.  As Paul Harvey used to say, “Here’s the rest of the story.”  Peter dropped a bombshell when – after dishing the full story on the Bread Springs sheep T-bone – he revealed an earlier T-boning episode.  Yes, you heard me right.  This one took place when Peter was in med school at UCLA and he T-boned a red Ferrari driven by a hot blonde who bitched him out and then tried to sue him.  So that leads us to conclude that no matter where Peter is in life he is going to T-bone something indigenous to the area. In southern California, he T-bones a Ferrari.  In Gallup, he T-bones a sheep.  So what would Peter T-bone if he lived in Florida?  An alligator?  In Nevada? A black jack dealer?  In South Dakota?  A buffalo?  In Pennsylvania Amish county?  A horse and buggy?  Just askin.  


Bob’s sketchy and selective memory prompted this postscript from Paul: 

BOB’S PATENTED HEADSTARTS.  Riding with Bob is more like riding an hour behind Bob!  Chuck figured we saw Bob for a total of 13 minutes over the course of  3 days.

CHUCK LOSES A SOCK.  On the 804 ride we were grinding up this long gravel road climb, after about an hour of climbing we came upon a group of vehicles parked at the top.  Most of them had Texas plates.  A conversation ensued led by Paul about letting the air out of a particular BMW SUVB”s tires since they hadn’t put in any hard work in getting up the hill.  We decide not to be mean and left their tires intact, as we turn around to resume riding we find Chuck missing a sock as he decides to clean the seal on his forks with it.  Once Chuck’s forks are clean we ride on. 

MESSIN’ WITH TEXANS.   Further down the trail we came upon the group of SUV Texans admiring the view at a lookout point.  We came tearing down the trail and hit the brakes before going over the edge.  The jokes start flying from the Texans about brakes failing, etc.  Paul commented about,  “Hey what a way to go right?  Better than being hit by a bus or something.”  A look of horror came over the group of Texans.  It just got worse when he continued to say “If  I ever end up with a  terminal sickness I’d fly off the edge of this cliff, beats dying in a nursing home.”  The silence from the group was eerie, these guys didn’t get it, we rode on …..