Monday, January 29, 2007


And the euros were making fun of us for crashing our own teammates out? It's hard to talk about Page's effort yesterday and do it justice. The dude was so PRO. Yes, he let Erwin slide by on the last up/down section just before the up/over bridge, but he went when it was time to go, had the courage to stay off the front and not work or wait for Franzoi, he was calm when Vervecken made contact, and he attacked twice on the final lap. So much respect for Page.

Here's what you call "5-on1" action:

What happens when the US sprays the rattle can of "ugly" on the team kits:


When Nascar meets Fidea supporters:

Saturday, January 27, 2007


This is a frite fork. You eat frites with it. Preferrably, with mayo.

Just back from day #1. Juniors and U-23's rolled today. The crowds were out for both races and the u23 race felt damn close what tomorrow could feel like. Imagine this: get up, walk to a train, pay $4, have it drop you off at the front of the Worlds Course gate. In America? Someday.

It was supposed to be an epic battle between Niels Albert and Lars Boom but Big Orange Guy KILLED it today and put huge time into Niels after lap 2.

Saw a very rare, "you've seen it here first" bike in both races. We ended up scoping it out a bit more in the team area and yes, it looks like Time will be doing a cross frame for next year. Uh oh.

The course is tough: a difficult sand feature; many super-slick uphill drags; a wicked mud descent. It was sunny and about 5-10c so it was nice to have the continuous warm sans rain. Who knows what is in store for tomorrow.

Ran into Myerson, Dan, and Ben Turner at the race. Lots of US people here. Some great to see, some you run the other way. On the train home, there was a contingent of Dutch high schoolers who were wasted and psyched that Lars won and Niels lost. They were getting into everyone's face including mine. After a few racial slurs, it looked like it was going to get ugly.


Let the games begin

It's 12:30 am local time and we're just back from dinner in Brugge. CA Hupman Fred H is staying at the same joint so we hooked up with him for dinner. Great to see a Hup-dude out here and we're planning on taking the train with him to the Junior and YOUTWOTHREE race tomorrow.

I rolled with BW to the course today and saw some crazy DH action. There's a section of the course that is very, very, very steep, and super muddy. U23'ers were lining up and taking turns riding this today like it was a black diamond north shore tree stunt. The (cub) juniors roll tomorrow and they should warm up that spot nicely. Here are some photos from the Koppenberg. It's as steep as it looks. We were actually riding down it, too, for some photos. Having 32 Tufos with Carbone PRO's softened the blow. The climb is in the middle of nowhere and is literally just a neighborhood with houses at the top. I can't imagine the team car issues....

Wednesday, January 24, 2007


It was a huge day in Belgium today with the news about Lefevere and Museeuw. Coincidentally, we were visiting Museeuw in the AM, before his press conference and his admitting of not being 100% fair during his last season. His mobile was ringing off the hook while we were with him and we could tell something was up. At one point, he got up, looked out the window, and did a long stare at the industrial park which houses the offices of Museeuw Bikes. While meeting the Lion today was special, but I couldn't help but think how depressing this day was for me, for Museeuw.

As JM looked out the window, and then back in the room which housed all his trophies (I was sitting next to one of his Roubaix rocks) I can't help but assume he was thinking, what the hell has happened?

After we met with Museeuw, Mike and I drove over to ride some of the climbs on the Ronde: Koppenberg, Eikenberg, Bosberg, and of course, the Muir. The Muir wasn't as bad as I's long, but perhaps I was just warmed up. The Koppenberg kicked my ass. I can highly recommend using cyclocross 46/36 gearing! Museeuw talked about how you can't win the race on the Koppenberg, but you can lose the race there. Yup. I lost a few other things there, too.

Tomorrow we hook back up with "Luk" the Belgian Godfather and go see the Unibet presentation, and then head over to Brugge to prepare for Worlds.

Here's a clip for Hoogerheide before the race. Check out the veins!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007


Had dinner with the Belgian Mafia tonight and the word is that tomorrow we are getting up, driving to Museeuw's house, hanging with the Lion himself, and then maybe going out to the Muir to do the climb with him.


Went to Hoogerheide yesterday for the last World Cup. Insane. Will be posting photos when I find a better connection. Weather was absolute crap. Nys is officially non-human.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Man with a Plan

It's in the books. 07 Master's CX Worlds happened. Where to start? On the way to the venue, we flipped a "right on red". I commented how nobody followed us. Not good. It wasn't 5 mnutes later and the Belgie Po-Po was blinging lights and we were pulled over. It's a unique feeling to have an officer of the law say something very important in a stern voice and not understand what was said. F'ing Americans. "We do this at home, so why can't we do this here?"

After an explaination by the female officer of how this is done in the US, alpha male backed down. We were also lost at this point, and so we asked which way to the venue; it was behind us. We explained that we had 10 minutes to get to sign in for Ped's race and asked for an escort...jokingly. They weren't joking and turned around and busted it 30 km over the speed limit and we had a free ride all the way to Lake Zilvermeer. Hilarious.

Ped raced 40-44 at 2 pm and had a great start, and slowly settled in...only to gear down and stop "getting in people's way." Euro dudes. Saw some SICK bikes at the start, this one was over the top. (We'll let the shoe cover size slide b/c of the Lightweights)

My race (30-34) went off at 3 pm and while the "Secret Belgian Start" was used for every other race (draw a random number as "pole postion" and line up sequentially from there) our race was super-random and I got a nice last row call up; perfect.

The start was insanely fast on a straight pave section and then a 90-degree turn onto a beach.

I moved up on the pave and was sitting in low 20's for most of the race and then settled in to finish---on the lead lap--in 28th. Legs felt ok and had some memories of power from months ago, but a 12 hour plane ride is a 12 hour plane ride. I was sucking the wheel of a 6'6 Dutchman through the start/finish on multiple laps and he had some choice opinions on my strategy. I think he asked me "do you wanna get frites with me after we're done?" or something like that.

The fans were the best. Super-civilian fans all Belgified out for the event.

The guy below was down with the cause; the man with the plan.

Home-boy had a cart with a noise-machine that was used for Belgie's only.

The horn sounded like this:

Indoor cross

It's 2 am on Saturday of Master's Worlds and I'm up. Have been for about two hours. Ped finally made it into Brussels...albeit on a bus. Flight out of NED was cancelled so they booked 'em on a bus. Nice one. Randomly, I found him. Naturally, we talked about the mass of Quick Step homies kickin' it in the terminal. Our "mid-sized van" turned out being a soap box Renault. Think Honda Civic Wagon circa 1984.

On the way out of Brussels, we saw a bunch of CX bikes going somwhere. Cannondales. Ugly Cannondales. I'm digging the high variety and quantity of wicked-compact cargo vans....everyone makes one; they're diesel; they scream team vehicle.

So, the TV in the waiting area of the hotel just re-played the weeks news and I was able to capture these images. Indoor cross. On TV. At 2 am. Wicked!!!!!! Tomorrow we're going to haul it to Hoogerheide, NED for the last World Cup race of the season.