Archive for February, 2010

Snow in Texas

Posted: February 24, 2010 in Uncategorized

Yep, it SNOWED in San Antonio, Texas yesterday.  It came down in its floaty way only to melt on contact with anything.  All over town the white stuff came down with the same results. 

I called my buddy Tim up in Leander, TX and they had a little bit stick. 

Really, Snow, in Texas?  I moved down here to get away from that stuff.

The weather is supposed to be better today and throughout the rest of the week.  Spring should be coming soon.

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The Florida Trip

Posted: February 19, 2010 in Bikes, BMX racing
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Zoie and I made it through security after the quick skycaps took our bags and my “golf”bag. Fernie and Fernie were on our flight and drove us to the track.

This was be the first race on the Supercross.  It didn’t go so well. I came unclipped and fell, hurting my shoulder and knee on Saturday during the first round and wasn’t able to race Sunday.

Up untill that point I was having a great weekend.  I felt really fast and was getting some great gates. 

Zoie won on Friday and took 2nds on Saturday and Sunday. 

It was a good trip for the two of us.  The weather was great and we were at a BMX race.

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There was a break in the rain this past week.  I think it stopped Thursday and as of Tuesday it’s still dry.  A nice thing to have happen.  This ment we were able to run races on Saturday and Sunday.  While the track wasn’t perfect, it was better than it has been in a while.  There were really only two soft spots, one coming out of turn one and one coming out of turn two.  I am hoping that these will be dried out for Tuesday night’s practice.

The racing was good both Saturday and Sunday.  We were supposed to have Valentines Day plaques, they got delivered at some point after Cory had to leave for the track and is the reason we decided to race on Sunday.  Saturday night we had 50 or so racers and Sunday about 20.  I think we would have seen more racers on Sunday if we had raced later in the day, but CapCityBMX was running a race with their sign-ups from 1-2 and we wanted to be sure that anyone that was planning on making that drive would have ample time. 

Those CapCityBMX guys have been having a worse time with the weather than we have.  They’ve had problems with their entrance not being passable due to the weather.  So they’re not as able to work on the track to get it back in shape.  They’re getting ready for their State Qualifer in two weeks and I hope things work out for them and they’re able to have a great race.

I’ve run Shimano DXRs going on two years.  They were a present from a friend(Josh) and my wife, they split the cost or something.  Josh installed them. They are pricey, but nice and I’ve had no issues with THEM.  

I got them along with another companies chainring.  This was a problem.  Weather it was the chainring or the supplied aluminum chainring bolts I am not sure.  The chainring snapped into three pieces, the chainring bolts stayed in the crank arms and no damage to the cranks.  Looking at the chainring, the aluminum bolts went through the holes in the rings.  Odd, yes and it hurt.  Had I not been wearing shorts and my knee/shin guards I’d been really bad.  One piece went into the kids in staging and another almost hit the finishline scores closest to the 1st straight.  The one piece that stayed with the bike had the chainring bolt stuck in the hole.  I fixed this with a Snap gear and steal chainring bolts.  I’ve since changed to Rennen chainrings.

Again nothing wrong with the DXR cranks or the bearings.  One day came across Enduro Zero Bottom Brackets.  And since I was getting a new frame figured it would be cool to get a set in Red.  Just as easy to install as the stock Shimano.  The biggest difference is they spin like a top and are super smooth.  These are still on my bike and on their 3rd frame. (adding this) I noticed that “Enduro” is bringing search results this way.  I’d like to add that these bearings have been on my bike without any cleaning or breaking.  I am about 225lb and at times are not the smoothest at landing when clearing 28 foot doubles.  They should hold up to Mtn. Bike abuse.

The Shimano DXR cranks are stiff, strong and light.  They are not cheap, you could buy a new frame for the cost of them depending on where you get them.  They are a main part of your bike and as that I think they’re worth the money.  I’ve seen a few new takes on Shimano’s idea, but they are just that.

N.A.G #3

Posted: February 11, 2010 in BMX racing

NAG stands for National Age Group.  Last year Zoie earned the #3 plate in her class, 6 year old girls.  She had some stiff competition from the other girls her age.  She did really good at the nationals we went to with a whole lot of 2nds.  At the ABA Grands she got 3rd behind the #1 and #2 racers and sealed the #3 plate.

How’d my 6 year old daughter get into racing?  She started off just going to the track with the family and watching me and her brother race.  At the age that I started running around behind Brody we weren’t making the weekly trips to Lincoln as a new track had been built in Iowa replacing the first Council Bluffs track. It came down the side of a hill.  It was super fast and not the place for a little one that couldn’t grab the breaks to try.  But she did have a 10 inch bike from Toys r Us that she pushed around the house and down the street.

One day I found a UFO micro mini complete bike on eBay for about $400.  A great price at the time, since there weren’t complete micros being made.  Untill the day after I bought the bike when Redline anounced they would have a micro complete in their line-up. 

I thought that getting it before Zoie could ride that I would have time to have it repainted a nice pink for her.  The bike arived a few days later in great shape.  I put it together to make sure everything was there and that it all was in good shape.  Being that Brody was also on a UFO micro mini, I figured he could take it for a spin.  We headed across the street to the church parking lot so that he could do a few laps in a flat area.  The bike was working great.

Zoie tiring of just watching asks to get on.  So I set her on the bike.  She puts her feet to the pedals and to my surprise is off and going.  Zoie had never riden a bike without training wheels, she just went.  And now I have to chace her down since she doesn’t know how to turn or stop.  Then she turns avoiding the curb and lucky for me and her starts making a big circle.  She’s doing this because she can’t get the bike to straighten out.  I never had the chance to take the bike apart after that and have it painted.

A few months later David Griswold, the Track Operator for Omaha BMX opened an indoor track in Lincoln, NE.  This is where Zoie will compete in her first race.  In the freezing weather, in an “indoor” track that is really just an open horse areana with billboard tarps for walls.  She was only 2 and we have photos of her in a kid carrier sleeping at the track. 

Zoie on the gate at LoneStar BMX, big brother holding her up.

Zoie on the gate at LoneStar BMX, big brother holding her up.

Now 5 years later she’s raced in a bunch of Nationals, gotten a NAG plate and is looking to better her number for next year.  We’re getting ready for Zoie and my first BMX trip, just the two of us.  Only a week away and the two of us are off to the races.

How He Got started

Posted: February 11, 2010 in BMX racing

I started back racing BMX in about 2002.  My son was 2 and starting to ride and I wanted to do something that we as a family could do.  I remembered BMX racing had little kids doing it when I was a kid, so we found the nearest track and started making weekly trips to Lincoln, NE from Omaha.  A drive that my wife made daily to get to work during the week. 

Brody started off with me running around the track behind him helping him make it over the big jumps.  I’d race and then chase him around a few more times.  He had a 12 Torker and did pretty good.  A track opened in Council Bluffs, IA, and was closer to our house.  We Geeked it up a notch and bought matching Redline bikes, a Proline mini for Brody and a XL Flight for me.  The Mini was too big, so we flipped the stem around and got smaller cranks.  That worked ok, but he couldn’t touch the ground.  Doubling the cost of his bike, we bought him some 18 inch wheels. This worked.

His first race was kinda by accident.  We’d taken a trip down to Blue Springs, MO for theirs and Raytown’s state race. Through out the 100+ degree day we heard that there was a local in Kansas, just over the boarder in Topeka.  We decided why not hit that race too.  As normal Cory and I decided that letting Brody ride around the track with me running behind.  He was able to make the whole track without help, a first.  We decided to let him try a few more times before we signed him up, of course he did it.  So we signed Brody up.  The lady doing sign-ups was a little supprised to have Cory sign-up a 2 year old.  She gave us a number plate with BR on it.  He raced and had a good time.

The next day at Raytown Bordy raced again.  As we’re in staging for the final round someone noticed he had a flat.  With out a tube and not waiting to hold everyone up, we ran and pumped up his tire.  He got out on the track but as he came around the first turn he was looking at his back wheel and needed help with making it up the big jump out of the turn.  The tire was flat, but he made it around the rest of the way.  We were proud of him and he was so proud of the trophie he got that day.  Even though it was a normal sized trophie, it was almost as big as him.

Last night the track was open, soft in spots rutted in others.  Some came out to ride and we had a few new members come and signup.  Brody was out practicing the last straight jumping and showing off.  Then he helped out a new kid make it over the same jumps.  He seems to like helping the new kids find their way around the track.

No where to ride.

Posted: February 9, 2010 in BMX racing, Workout

Usually when Josh and I go to the gym we do some on our race bike sprints before heading in.  Trying to go faster than the other from start to finish.  The lengths vary from 100 feet to 300 feet or more.  We do standing starts(when I have the G-Cog on), rolling starts and coasting downhill starts.  These are fun and with each of us using a Cateye wireless computer compare cadence RPM and Top speed.  It’s a friendly little competiton to not only see who gets to the end first but who went the fastest and who pedaled the fastest.  It’s been a while, but Jordan used to join us.

Josh and I planed on doing this a few times in the past couple of weeks, but the weather hasn’t been the best.  20degree weather was the first reason not to only to be followed by rain or at least wet roads since. 

It’s the rain that is causing the problem.  All the BMX tracks are getting hammered with rain.  Cap City BMX hasn’t had but a few races this year and their state race is coming up in a few weeks.  LoneStar BMX has had a few more nights open, but we’re way behind what we’ve had in the past.  I can only guess that the Huston area tracks are doing about the same.  Probably the only dry track in Texas, DeSoto’s Metroplex.

This isn't Metro Plex, its Veloport in Albuquerque but you get the Idea.

This isn't Metro Plex, its in Albuquerque but you get the Idea.

Tonight LoneStar is supposed to have practice, we’ll see how the track looks and make a decission.  I really want to have the track open and ride myself.  It’s really cutting into my being prepared for the Oldsmar, FL race. 

Last weekend the Chula Vista, CA national was wet at best.  MJT sent us a pic that looked like they were flooded using pallets as a makeshift boardwalk.  You can check that picture out on Facebook.

Well at least I’m not on the East coast where snow is piling up fast.  I should be able to find a dry parking lot and do sprints today if I can’t ride the track.