Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Indoor TT at Vision Quest

So 2 Sunday's ago I was looking to ride. It was the first Sunday after the end of Cross season and I was still looking for a way to beat my head in for 1/2 hour. I had a power test that I was going to try to do, but MJH2 called me up and said there was an indoor TT that Vision Quest was putting on for that day.

I checked out the site and decided I would have a more effective power test if it was in actual competition. So we both decided to go.

First off let me say that Vision Quest is owned and run by Ex pro cyclist Robbie Ventura. He rode with Postal and 7-Eleven during his career. He was/is also Floyd Landis's coach. you might remember Floyd as the 3rd Americna to win the Tour de France in 2006 who was later found guilty of doping and stripped of the title, banned, and whose trial turned into a circus of a show that included members of his entourage calling another Tour winner Greg LeMond and threatening him with revealing his secret that he was molested at an early age by his uncle......

....now where were we?

Anyhooo....the TT. First off this was a really nice facility. Top notch. A lot fo money went into this and it shows. The setup is 24 computrainers all wired together in a multi-trainer package. They had a table at the door for registration where they took your bike, wiped off the tires, set it up in the trainer for you while you changed and weighed in.USAC officals and all this was a sanctioned event.

VQ Indoor TT #1 2008
This shot was sent to us in Robbie Ventura's Holiday e-mail. That's myself in the front row next to the red sleeveless jersey guy. MJH2 is right next to me.

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The setup from the other side. Notice the large flat displays? Rocky was giving me strength.

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So the TT went OK. I ended up placing 8th out of 16 Cat 4/5 racers. I had a lot of caffiene that morning so my HR averaged 185 for the duration of the event. That hurt. For the last sprint I peaked at somewhere near 198 bpm. The USAC official was looking at me like he was going to have to take me to the hospital. Meh.

Good news is I established an FTP or Functional Threshold Power of 266 watts. Not super high, but about 3.3 watts/kg....woughly half what a TdF contender can put out.

On the way out of the locker room I spied this poster:

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For those who don't know me that well let me just say that I started riding "seriously" in 1988. That year I was picking up cycling magazines and soaking up everything that was in them. I picked up an issue of Winning at some point and started reading about this squirrelly looking blonde kid wearing a pink jersey.

Hot pink was in back then, but still I thought, "what a panzy. Who would want to wear a pink jersey. I would be so PO'd at the organizers." Then I saw the picture that is in the poster above. It is simply a picture of Andy Hampsten riding across the Gavia wearing shorts on his way to sealing up his 1988 Giro d'Italia (Tour of Italy) victory.

It was, and is, the toughest picture in cycling I have ever seen either before or since. Sure there are some other great ones, but this one is mine. I have a copy of the poster sitting in my dining room still unframed that I got by writing a letter to Andy's brother when he was still selling them. This picture changed my life. If you saw it in real life you would know why. Stare at it. Think about all the posting I do about cycling and suffering. Think about the raw will that it takes to ride like that. That is cycling to me. You become a machine blinded by pain and focused on one thing. It's beautiful.

Anyway....to see that poster hanging on the wall autographed by Andy himself.....I just about swooned like a 13 yr old girl at a boy band concert.

After the TT we got to look through the new flagship Trek store atached to the facility. Tons of lance stuff on the walls. I'm not going to say that I ma not a Lance fan. I am not going to poopoo what are great achievements. I'll just say that while in there MJH2 and I both found the Landis stuff more interesting as well as both of us wanted to ask where the LeMond bikes were....

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A set of all 7 of "official" TdF yellow jerseys signed by the man himself.

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A cool wall of Robbie Ventura's stuff from his career. The bikes are junior track bikes he raced in Northbrook and Kenosha as a kid.

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MJH2 posing in front of 2 podium presentation jerseys from Floyd Landis. One from the TdF and one from the Tour of Georgia. These are uber rare as it is. Floyd's story makes them even more interesting. To many they are worthless to some like us...they are priceless.....and shoved in the back corner of the store...

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Beauty of a Phonak team jersey from Floyd. "Thanks for the help."

The TT was cool. I want to do another one, but the holidays have my all a jumble. Want to lose some more weight this winter, but lifting has me adding weight right now....lifting weights as well as beer and cookies that is.

Trying to focus.


Velosnaps said...

Very cool. Thanks for sharing!

L*I*S*A said...

Now I could seriously get into that.

When's the next one?

CyLowe said...

Beauty of a Phonak team jersey from Floyd. "Thanks for the help."

I'm not sure if this is comic or tragic. Just having it on the wall is priceless.