Monday, October 29, 2012


As predicted (for a change...)  it was the first weekend of "Real" cross conditions,  blessing the big bubble weekend once again with everything from frozen ruts to snot on ice,  to just plain glop.  It was looking downright fun out there this weekend.  Made it out to parts of the "Rez" race,  but missed the Valmont show.

Here are the usual video goods from Saturday.  I also shot a bunch of more "interesting" angles with the Go-Pro,  and am working up a little "artsy-fartsy" clip from that stuff.   I KNOW you can't wait.

SM35+  Open

Colorado Cross Classic - SM 35+ open Lap1 from Dale Riley on Vimeo.

SM35+ cat 3

Colorado Cross Classic - SM35+ cat 3 - Lap1 from Dale Riley on Vimeo.

SM35+ cat 4 - Lap 1 in the whoops

Colorado Cross Classic - SM35+ cat 4 Lap 1 from Dale Riley on Vimeo.

SM45+ cat 4 & 55+ Start

Colorado Cross Classic - SM 45+ cat 4 & 55+ Start from Dale Riley on Vimeo.

SM45+ cat 4 - Lap 1
Colorado Cross Classic - SM45+ cat 4 Lap 1 from Dale Riley on Vimeo.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

View From The Front

The Rain and snow is coming down.

"it's beginning to look a lot like 'Cross-mas..."  or some such nonsense.  Given the forecast,  all you lucky 'Crossers are looking to get a REAL dose of cross this weekend.  Just makes it harder and harder to NOT be out there.  Sigh.  

With that,  a nice little video edit from a friend,  labeled as "Some highlight footage from the handlebar of the 2nd place bike,  augmented with some video from a kind bystander and well-wisher".   a new twist on the race lap video edit.  Hats off to Johnny D. for this one.  Enjoy.

Blue Sky Velo cyclocross race, Mens 35+_4 highlights from John Deibert on Vimeo.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Blue Sky Velo - Xilinx

Some video from the Beer-Drinking-Dads-League on Sunday

SM35+ cat 4 - Start

Blue Sky Velo Cup from Dale Riley on Vimeo.

SM35+ cat 4 - Lap 1

Blue Sky Velo Cup - SM35+ cat 4 Lap 1 from Dale Riley on Vimeo.

SM35+ cat 4 - Lap 2

Blue Sky Velo Cup - SM35+ Lap2 from Dale Riley on Vimeo.

SM35+ cat 4 - Lap 3
Blue Sky Velo Cup - SM35+4 lap 3 from Dale Riley on Vimeo.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Mmmmm... Enchilada.....

I hear there was some kind of big-time national tour kind of Cyclocross race-thing last weekend up in Ft. Collins.  Also hear that for at least some of the groups,  the tradition of snotty weather for the USGP here continued.  The old guy fields looked stacked to the gills with fast guys,  and as usual,  KFC and J-Pow did their usual thing up there,  generally beating everyone up.

Me?  Just heard about it.   I was "otherwise occupied" a bit further west.  Did a quick trip to Moab and Fruita,  catching much of the same rain that got the USGP all "Cross-ey" on Saturday.  I think we may well have managed to catch THE last day you could do all of "Burro-Down" (AKA the whole Enchilada..) in Moab for the year.  Managed to eke out a few short rides on Friday & Saturday between the rain on the Kokopelli system in Fruita,  and topped off the trip with a less than 12 parsec time on the Kessel Run,   er,  well really just a few shuttles runs on Kessel,  with lights,  in the dark,  with Knob Creek shots at the start of each.   Good,  clean fun.

Highlight was still the Whole Enchilada.  Pretty damn cool riding up to treeline,

Getting a good Aspen dose,

Then getting to ride ALL of Porcupine rim,

ALL the way to the river.

In general It was a trail one can approve of,  even in election season.

I Approve....... from Dale Riley on Vimeo.

I guess if you are going to miss Cross season and be broken,  got to make the best of it.  While a lot of fun,  the Enchilada just about killed me.  Even riding mostly downhill for 4 hours was enough to leave me drooling and in bed asleep at 8:30 that night.  Party on,  Dude.

Guessing there is not a lot of partying around the Lance Armstrong home right now.  Got to watch that (predictable) debacle unfold on my little vacation.  Lots of hate (and even some support... at least for his non-bike/cancer work..) out there in the cyber-sphere.  Do have to say LA has some BALLS for all these years,  playing the martyr.   I had not really ever been a "fan" and had lost a lot of interest in pro road cycling for years,   partly because I thought the domination of the Lance teams made the races somewhat boring.   But still it is just plain SAD to see that competitive cycling will just be seen by the "normal" masses as a bunch of skinny dopers for years to come.  Already,   the non-cyclist people I know ask about it all the time.   SAD.  <<begin sarcasm mode>> We can only hope he can at least he can hang on to the G-IV after all the sponsors dropped him like an Italian sprinter on a mountain stage.  I mean,  what would life be without that? <<end sarcasm mode>>

I have joked about doping.  Lately,  I really wish I COULD get some EPO,  just so I can ride "normally".  Ride for more than 2 hours without coming apart at the seams.  Be able to go on a ride without having to think "how long is the climb"?  Thinking maybe that would let me be able to ride more than one lap at the Wednesday "Not-Boulder Worlds" right now.     But really,  are you going to cheat yourself and everyone around you?   Cheat as a local master,  or for that matter a pro?  Motives of "making it" and pro contracts enough?  Getting that bit of gas to make the top 10 in the beer-drinking-dads-league for once?

Nope.  not really.  at least for me.  Apparently there were plenty it was OK for.  Sad for the sport we love.   Just Plain SAD

Monday, October 1, 2012


Hanging out at my first Cross Race of the season at Xilinx turned out to be a lot harder than I thought,  and I'm not talking about the long day helping the Beyond Limits guys put the race on.    I'm talking about how hard it is to NOT race.  I really thought that I was going to be "good" with not racing this season.  Turning out,  it's being a lot harder on my brain than I thought it would be.

Since confirming what I had suspected since early this spring,  that my Hairy Cell Leukemia had built back up to the point it was seriously affecting my already pretty poor aerobic performance on a bike,  I had come to terms with me missing this cross season.  All was well.  A season off was good.  More time to spend in the fall with my long suffering,  cross-widow wife.  Rest up.  Do some other things.  Hang at a few races.  Drink more beer.  Beat myself up less.  Sounded good.

Turns out,  This silly bike riding and racing thing seems to fill a pretty big part of my life.  While I AM enjoying some of this time,  the extra time with my wife,  NOT flogging myself with the odd interval session in a semi futile attempt at turning my limited bike racing talent into a somewhat less limited talent,  that is good.  The rest is not doing so good.  It is amazing how the slow & ongoing deterioration in the ability of my body to ride a bike up some hills,  or for more than a few hours at a time can influence your mood when you have spent SO many years working on the ability to do just that.

I have had to watch myself slowly degrade from this spring,  where I could still ride "reasonably" well,  at a moderate pace (no full efforts,  but could still get up a hill..),  to here in the fall,  where even an "easy" ride is starting to really leave me pasted.  In the last few weeks it has gotten bad enough that I have been declining ride invitations,  as I don't feel like I can gracefully do some of the rides,  or get up a larger climb without unreasonably holding people up.  Picking rides based on how much climbing,  or how long it will take to finish,  or the altitude,  rather than what is a "good" ride just plain sucks.  Looking at who is going on a ride,  making sure they will be "OK" with my "new" pace sucks.  All my riding friends would say they don't care,  but you still think that way.

I'm still getting out some,  but I am finding riding more & more frustrating,  not how you would ever want to feel about riding a bike.  Going to a cross race just drove it home.  Nothing like reality slapping you right in the face,  reminding you of where you are REALLY at,  no matter what your desires are.  That is just what one has to live with for any chronic medical issue,  cancer or not.  That being said,  it still just plain sucks to be in this mindset sometimes.

I was given my choice of when to get treated for my Leukemia on the last visit to my Oncologist.  Looking like I'll go do my Chemotherapy after Christmas,  just so I can have a real riding season next year.   The other symptoms (Strange,  not much of the info on ANY disease talks about your Vo2Max or Functional Power Threshold as a symptom of a disease....) are starting to show up,  and the timing for a New Years treatment should be good.  Now I just need to get there without getting any more misty-eyed about how I "can't ride".  Compared to so many,  I am a VERY lucky person,  given that my cancer is a "baby" cancer,  an "easy" one and it could be SO much worse.  Riding like crap is really a pretty petty whine in the big picture when it comes to this disease.

I caught myself thinking I hoped the weather would turn crappy,  so that I could have an excuse to not ride.   But really,  that is not what I want.  This weekend,   We'll be heading up to Frisco to catch the race,  stay with good friends,  and maybe take the big bike out for a easy spin before the high country changes seasons.  The following weekend plan to hook up with some folks for a quick trip out to Moab for a "Whole Enchilada" run,  and then a few days of relaxed riding in Fruita.    Riding may get a little frustrating right now,  but it ain't over yet.  Cancer does NOT get to take that away.

The Whole Enchilada: Top to Bottom - Moab, Utah from Phil Shep on Vimeo.

Thanks for listening.
I feel better.
Whining complete.