Monday, March 5, 2012

         A brief message from the Davis Bike Club Masters RaceTeam

DECEMBER 2012... It's been a fun filled Season so far... Team Rides...Team Races...Team Get Togethers!
We have had more things happen then I have been able to keep up on. Blogs have now become something for that those that have the talent, and the time, and keep them interesting.

For me, having like most fallen "Victim" to the FB thing... Short little shout outs... Great ride with the "Team" today kinda things! I really miss the great things that Blogs can bring. A little more personal, and a little more fun some times, and more fun to read.

None the less I can't promise how much will get posted here in the future, but we will try and keep it alive!

The one thing I would like is for all those that stumble on to this sight, that we the Davis Bike Club Masters Race Team have an awesome group of individuals that really enjoy Riding and Racing their Bikes together.

On this page are all the needed links to inform you as to what we are all about. Please if you are interested in Racing give us a look.

We at this time have Categories with a strong representations in most of the categories that Race in Northern California.

On top of all the Racing we do together... We really really enjoy our time together when we are not Racing, and are just having a good time riding our Bikes!

Please feel free to contact us as needed for more info...

Note: This is a Non-Alcoholic Drink!

                                                                       (But it looks good! )

With that.... Cheers and Ciao and Out... FF

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Just a Really Nice Day!

Well as most days go... Today was a great time with the 45+ guys, as we tackled just under 5000ft of climbing in and around the Auburn area. Picked up, and added to the mix was Bruce Hendler (, and Torre Phillips (ex DBC Jr.). Now the nice thing about having Torre there was the fact that I knew he would be able to keep Wink and Coach honest. The riding was "Brisk" but manageable... We made sure that we rode together, but when we hit the climbs... the Gloves came off!

One comment heard was Big asking Steggall where his climbing legs all of a suddenly came from? Steggall's reply was that he had been hitting the overpasses in Davis extra hard on his commute to and from Sac! Big mumbled something and walked away.  : )

By the time we finally rolled onto the last climb, Ridge Road . We were all pretty much ready to call it a day... But even on our last stretch of road, and as we entered into the final miles, it did not bring any peace to the group.  We were still launching attack after attack up and until the final Stop light!

Good stuff... Lots of Fun... Sore legs... Ready, and looking forward to doing more!

Now come's the best part of the day... A nice stop at the Islands Restaurant!

Thank you to Roddy for the hospitality, and the treat! It is always fun to end a great ride and day on such a positive note!

Ok... Enough for now, and the fast up-date

PS... In the picture you can see the "Love" that Steggall and Big are always trying to show each other!

Ciao and Out... FF

Friday, November 4, 2011

Let the 2012 Season begin!

So as a lot of Blogs go... This one has sat dormant for a few months. Well the Road Race season is over, and that most certainly has finally allowed me some time to sit at the keyboards, and bring things up to speed. One thing as a "Blog" reader that I like, are things that get to the point, and hit all the highlights. With that being said... In the next few days I'll, and others try to toss all of you some tasty goodies as to how we did in 2011, and were we are going in 2012. Ok already enough blab'n for now!

Ciao and Out...  FF

Monday, February 21, 2011

My BIG Idea

It was nothing new. Just the same sinking feeling on last weekend's rides up King Ridge and Sweetwater with Wink spinning right by me. I've had the same feeling when all the other ABS (Avian Bone Syndrome)-types spryly dancing on their pedals when we hit the steep pitches on Cantelow. What makes it even worse is when those ABS check out their fancy Powertap-thingymajigs and brag about averaging this much or that much power. Like on the Jesse Moore ride - "better be ready to ride > 215W for 3 hours." Really? Put me on the flats and I could do that all day. In the hills? I'd probably have to be above threshold while the ABS are still pulling 220W. So with a long weekend, I began to think, "Why are we FABs (Fat-Ass Boys) always doomed in the race to the summit?"

I'm sure all the ABS are saying, "Yeah, you have more mass, so you should be able to produce proportionally more power." And looking at their skinny, knobbly legs you would think this would be true.

Looking at the graph above, the ABS would seem to be right. Say we are going out on one of JM's ride and the ABS (75 kg) pulls a constant 220W. On the flats this will get him going 32.8 km/h. To keep up with him, a FAB (95 kg) has to generate 229W. However, relative to mass this is only 2.41 W/kg for the FAB compared to the 2.93 W/kg the ABS is doing. If the ABS keeps his power constant as the grade increases, the FAB has to increase his power to equal the ABS' speed but relative to his weight, the FAB never reaches the ABS relative power even on a 9% grade!

So us FABs must be really weak, eh? Not quite. It's nice to think that power increases linearly with mass but it doesn't. Assuming that increases in mass are proportional in terms of muscle, bone, lungs, fat, etc., the increase in mass is a function of the 3rd power (i.e. cubed, not Watts), but unfortunately power (i.e. Watts) only increases as a function of the 2nd power (i.e. squared). This is because power is dependent mainly upon the surface area of vessels, capillaries, aveoli, etc. So rather than being linear, the relationship looks more like this....

Using a 50 kg "Uber-ABS" rider as the baseline, a 75 kg rider would have 50% greater power if there was a linear relationship between power and mass (red line). However, the increase in power should only be expected to increase by 31% (blue line). For the 100 kg "Uber-FAB" rider, the increase in power is only 59%, rather than the 100% expected.

Back on JM's ride with the ABS holding the 220W, this is what the true power/"relative" mass relationship is as the grade increases.

On the flats, the FAB only has to use a power/relative mass that is 89% of the ABS - big advantage. But this advantage is quickly evened out on a 2% grade and on a 6% grade, the ABS has a 5% advantage on the FAB.

Does all this rationalization make us FABs feel any better? I'll let you know the next time I get dropped on the WW ride.

Friday, February 18, 2011

A Weekend to Remember!

Well here it is... One week later coming into the weekend, and all I can think about is the great time I had at our Bodega Bay Team Camp. You can see from the pictures that the weather was absolutely incredible! For some their fun started on Friday, and for the others we rolled in on Saturday morning. Our first day started with the Kings Ridge, 82 miles of all the great things that can come along with such a great ride. Ups...Downs...Ups, and more Ups!

(That Kings Ridge ain't no thang!)

A real big Thank You to Val for a long day behind the wheel.

Yeah... We can't believe that Steggall didn't get us lost either!

Wink thinking to himself... I hate that Keith... I hate that Keith  : (

Wink still thinking... I hate that Keith... I hate that Keith

Hey Darin... You done cleaning my Bike yet?

After the end of a great day of riding we all gathered for...The ever fun cycling talk...The how much I'm hurting... The "Man" I sucked today!... Oh Yeah, and the Recovery Drinks! Regardless of what is was that we talked about, we can guarantee you that it was a good time by all. You can see the line was forming for some great dinner grub, and more great conversation.

                    (Most of us even stayed up till 10:00!)

After a great nights sleep (Hmmmm). We all met for breakfast... Fueling ourselves up for the Ride of the Day! We had a different groups going out in different directions... One group doing what we call "The Bakery" ride, and the other doing a mix of "This Ride/That Ride", and the rest of us doing Sweetwater.

 Top O Sweet Water, and our lunch break.
(Thank you so much for the SAG support)

                                  Oh Gawd! Why Me? Why Me?... 
                                             Steggall please just go away!

                 The 45+ plus guys showing how to look good!

Anyway it is a quick recap to what was a great Weekend... Both in those of us that came to Bodega, and as we would also find out... A great weekend at the Races! With the DBCRT getting Podiums, and top 5's in a lot of the categories at the Folsom Crit on Saturday.

(I can't believe we are back to this!)

Ciao and Out... FF

Monday, February 7, 2011

Racing for a Piece of the Pie!

                                       Cherry Pie 2011
                                                   Racing for a piece of the Pie!
I did not want to do this race, there is a huge, monster, cardiac hill like
hill in this my mind and listening to others, it seemed this way.
Hills and me do not mix. Ken told me it was a power hill and it is perfect
for me. Michele and Leslie signed up...pre registration only! I was stuck,
once Michele does something I have no excuse! :) My last hope was my Coach
would say "NO do not do this are you nuts" so when I asked him I was
thinking about it...he said "yes, do it, it is a power hill and it is your
hill". CRAP! So I bit the bullet and signed up. I was stressed all week and
had visions of getting dropped first lap, there was no way I could climb
this mountain or any mountain fast. The night before Ken was showing me
video of the hill and racing, it looked like a mountain on the computer
screen. I asked Ken if I had a fever!

So we arrived and I went first to look at this hill. It was a hill but yes
in fact it is a power hill! I was still in fear of being dropped and I was
starting to think I was ill! I pre-rode the course and my legs were burning
just slowly coming up that darn hill. Michele told me it did not look as
large to her this year as it had before! I went to warm up on my trainer on
a hill where we parked. I was hoping to have fallen over off of it but then
Ken came and fixed it...darn him. Leslie showed and we talked, she is a good
climber so I knew she would be OK. Amber a new recruit whom we met at the
women's holiday party signed up too, it was her first race! So there were 4
DBCRT ladies ready to rock.

At the start, girls were asking stuff that made me fearful of them and they
separated out the female juniors out of our group, whew! There were 31 of us
on the start grid. They started us at the top of the descend hill, I had
never started a race down a hill but OK, I knew I could stay with them at
least for the downhill and through the first turn! Leslie and I had a goal
of not working on this race, the headwind was brutal and it was not worth
it, we had to save ourselves for the finish. Michele was not feeling well
and I am so proud of her to even suit up to race with us as ill as she was
feeling! Whistle blew and we were off. At the bottom of the hill, I
remembered I did not take my ritual GU before the start of this race....crap
I was really gonna suck!

Up the first hill, no problem. Many more laps, no problem...I was then
thinking WOW I am still in this race near the front....miracle! I was not
even taxed out which was surprising me! Once I figured out the laps and the
turns and who was scarier than the others I was sitting waiting. Leslie was
always next to me or in front of me so I could see her the whole time. I was
ready to cover had she needed to go in a break. Thank goodness she did not!
I was starting to think to myself, is this over yet cause I am getting
tired, no GU and this hill. Then I saw the lap counter 2 laps to go, oh I
could do 2 more laps! The pace picked up. I knew I had to get to the front
and be at the first one up the hill at the finish, it was my only hope to a
top finish...power up it. Last lap, Leslie was on the outside right, I was
on the inside left, going into the last chicane at the bottom of the hill, I
moved up the outside left, it was clear, I powered around the left to take
the inside last left turn, it was clear, my path was speed was
27.8mph into that turn...I looked at Leslie, she looked at me...she started
to move, I kept straight and all of the sudden....the girl on my right came
into my front wheel and her bars came into me...MID TURN...I pushed on her
and then pushed her off me, yelled something at her and somehow by a miracle
kept it upright. I went from 27.8mph to 20mph according to my SRM. I lost my
drive, I dug deep and pulled out a 12th place. I was a little angry.

I am becoming an angry crit rider...Brooke Miller is my hero (well, her and
Jane Robertson)! I did have fun after all and have the best teammates ever!
Afterwards my Coach, texts me...."I told you, you could do it", he rocks!
Michele was great for coming out sick, she rocks, I love her! Leslie is a
great workhorse and always there if you need her! Amber, for her first race,
picked a brutal one and hung in there to finish, good job Amber, I look
forward to many more races with you!

Next race is BP Crit is a 1/2/3/4 race...I called in the big guns
to help us 4' GF Trudy!

Again poached from Kristen... She Screams Team!  You can't help but love that!
Enjoy her Report as much as I did.   : )

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Freedom in Flight

Freedom in Flight by Michele F.

The love of bikes and a passion for racing exhilarates my life 365 days a year. I’m either riding my bike, racing my bike, cleaning my bike, staring at my bike, or just thinking about my bike. Am I crazy? No, I don’t think so. I have 10+ female and 50+ male teammates that can agree with that statement. Why are our lives so engulfed with cycling? To each to their own, we all have different reasons. I do it for the freedom in flight I experience while riding and the camaraderie and fun I have while racing.

Racing is exhilarating. It gets your heart rate pumping and the sweat glands flowing. All senses are engaged while you exert and push your body to its physical limits . . . the sound of the air whipping over your body . . the scenery flying by all around you . . . the smell of spring as you race through budding orchards . . . the salty taste of sweat as beads drip down your face. It is also about the love of my bike. There is a connection between cyclist and bike that only other cyclists can understand.

My 2010 Topsport Stage Race experience exemplifies the thrill and love I have for cycling and racing. The third stage was a 69 mile road race through the rolling hills of Copperopolis and surrounding areas. All was good until we came across some bad pavement. I started to hear rattling, LOTS of rattling. I looked down and my front water bottle was doing the happy dance in its cage. There was so much vibration that the screws were coming out and I was about to lose the cage! I notified my teammates about the situation. Just before a hill, the top screw popped out and the cage flopped over. Clunk, clunk, clunk with every pedal stroke I kicked the cage and water bottle. I grabbed the bottle before it fell out and had to stick it in my mouth because the road started going up. There I was, bottle in teeth bobbing in front of my face, out of the saddle, climbing trying to stay with the pack, kicking the cage… clunk, clunk, clunk. To make matters worse, I looked down and saw that the bolt scratched my new bike before jumping ship. I drank what was left in the bottle and chucked it to the side. I was cursing while the other ladies tried to comfort me, saying nail polish would fix it. I managed to bend the water cage enough to jam it into place. I was panicky because I realized that I was staying with the pack on this hilly course, but I was down to only being able to carry one bottle and my bike was scratched. I stayed on a teammate’s wheel, but I started to drift off every once in a while because I got distracted wondering if I needed shinny, gloss, or matte black nail polish. But then someone would come up and try to take the wheel which jolted me back to the race at hand.

Riding my bike is Freedom in Flight. Racing my bike is an adrenaline rush that keeps me coming back for more. Work schedules get shifted to fit riding plans, vacations are planed around training schedules, weekends are booked months in advance for races. My teammates are my friends and become part of my family. Cycling and racing isn’t just something that I do in my life… it is my life and everything else revolves around it.


Posted by FWS... Without MF's approval... Just thought it was a
great article, and she has access to this Blog, so she can delete it
if she see's necessary.  : )

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Let the New Season Begin...

Here we are and it's January 2011... Blogs are kinda a funny thing now-a-days. Seems as if they have become to much work for some (included). FaceBook and Twitter have stepped in as the new means of... Well, saying your couple of sentences... Hey! I think I forgot to rinse the shampoo out of my hair?  Or, at the coffee shop, and really liking the looks of that maple scone! Things like that. Always simple and to the point. Sometimes funny, sometimes sad, sometimes stupid. None the less... It's the future (for now) of how we stay in touch with friends we know, and friends we don't... But hey! There our FB/Twitter friends.

Blogging for some reason seems to be more involved? Maybe it's just me. But I can't see posting on your Blog that your at the produce isle, and can't decide between organic or non-organic blueberries?

While your Blogging, you are always spending time wondering what it is that you would like to say that might be of importance, and something that someone might be interested in.

On Team Bike Racing Blogs... The one sure thing is... You want to talk about Bike Racing or Bike
something. You'll find that you are either telling everyone what a great Race/Ride that you, and or you and the Team had. Or you spend time telling everyone why you rode and felt like Crap! 

Maybe your the "Bolder Blogger" type, and you like to slam the others that you Ride and Race with. Those for some reason are always fun to read. They always seem to get the most comments... Like...Well you suck too!  I can't say that you'll get to much of that here, but we on the DBC Masters do have our occasional disagreements. We just had a good one the other day. As you can see all things are fine now, but trust me these two will be at it again sometime soon.

So while I'll be the first to admit that I'm not sure how often I'll get back here. I just had to put this out to those that visit this page, that we will try to add something as to how things are going with the Davis Bike Club Masters RaceTeam in 2011.

If your new to the site... Use the links to find out what else might be going on in Nor-Cal, or
simply to send us an email to let us know that you might be interested in joining the DBCRT.

Ciao and Out!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Norwegian Bike Adventure

During my first trip to Norway in the summer of 2005 for a 2-month sabbatical, I had brought my bike along and enjoyed cycling around Oslo. Getting out of Oslo by bike, however, is very difficult if not impossible so my only ride outside the city was with Stig Tollefsen, a local Norwegian I met at work. I had returned to Oslo last year for a 2-day meeting and immediately set back on the 18-hour journey home. Making my third trip to Norway this summer for a 2-day meeting of the International Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis Study Group, I was determined to make the trip worth my while before heading back.

I contacted Stig for recommendations for a 2-day bike tour and help with locating bike rentals. Stig is a hardy Norwegian type, about my height who in ubber-John Steggall fashion bikes to work year-round even in the cold, dark Oslo winters. He kindly offered me to stay at his home, leave my luggage there and use his 63 cm steel frame Tommasini and suggested that I consider starting my trip in Fagernes. He also offered me a ticket to ride in the Vatternrundan the day after my planned trip. The Vatternrundan is a 300-km ride in Sweden with over 20,000 participants – something for the Davis Double Century to aim for - but I would have to catch a plane home that day.

I arrived at Stig’s home for dinner and enjoyed a traditional salmon and potato meal with his wife Mona, children Johannes, Marie and Peter, and another friend Benedicte and her son Axel. Johannes is 11 and speaks perfect English. We talked about the World Cup and bike racing. Surprisingly, rather than being a big Thor Hushvold supporter, he was a big fan of Cadel Evans, at least until he found a YouTube video of him slapping the hand of someone trying to pet his dog. After dinner, Stig and I sat down to map out my route and make some adjustments to the Tommasini. At 11:00 pm I was off to bed with the sun still high in the sky.

Day 1 Fagarnes to Gjendesheim (72 km, 560 meters elevation gain)

At 5:00 AM the sun was up and so was I. After stirring around in my room a bit, I joined the family for breakfast. Stig dropped me off at the Sandvika train station where I hopped on a bus for the 3 hour ride to Fagernes. After a quick stop at the Tourist Information Center to get my bearings and a kebab pita for lunch, I changed into my cycling gear, cinched up my backpack and headed north on Route 51.

The climbing started right away but was gradual. The bike fit perfectly and my legs felt great. I was starting to enjoy the scenery when 30 minutes in I had my first flat tire after hitting a hard crevice in the road. I quickly changed the tire using a CO2 cartridge I picked up in Oslo to replace the ones that had been confiscated from my checked bag in Frankfurt. I was hoping this was not an omen of things to come.

Up the road, I passed the beautiful green scenery awash with abundant purple and yellow flowers and spotted with red barns. I had to stop when I passed the Guinness Book of World Record’s Largest Witch’s Broom.

At Beitostolen, the surroundings quickly changed. The luscious fields were replaced by rocky mountains. I took a quick break to eat a Clif bar and was back on my way. The skies became grey and the wind grew colder and stronger in my face. The further I went the bleaker the area became. With only my racing jersey and a lightweight long-sleeve jersey Stig had given me, along with my bare legs, I was getting quite cold and my legs were starting to tire.

I was also starting to feel the altitude as my breathing began to labor and my head throbbed. I had finished my 2 bottles and filled them with water flowing down from the melting tundra without hesitation remembering that Stig had told me that there were no parasites in these waters.

There was a brief downhill stretch going to Bygdin but I had still had to work because of the strong headwind. I thought of stopping at Bygdin to warm up and put on the long sleeve thermal I had in my pack but decided to press on. Continuing to climb, I became colder and colder and my legs began to feel weak. I thought of the green lusciousness of the valley below and turning back to Fagernes. I wondered why Stig would ever send me this way. Did I mention that in addition to cycling and his work at the university, Stig is a part-time lumberjack? Thanks to him, I was suffering Norwegian style.

I felt some relief when I came across a line on the road with “KOM” painted under it. Just ahead was the Valdresfliya Hostel (elevation 1384 meters) where I warmed up with a hot tea and waffle with jam. I put on my thermal and asked the owner how much farther to Gjendesheim.

“13 kilometers. All downhill,” she said with a smile.

“Excellent!” I replied.

At Gjendesheim, it was much warmer. I checked into a nice hostel run by DNT (the Norwegian Trekking Association), had a shower and a nice dinner of tomato soup and cod with bacon. I laid in bed reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and fell asleep.

Day 2 Gjendesheim to Ringebu (110 km)

I awoke at 4:30 AM with the full morning sun beaming through the window. I finished The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and then went down for breakfast where I met a Swedish family, a Brit, an Aussie and a German couple. One of the Swedes was trying to sell a Specialize Roubaix which new cost him over 8,000 euros.

After breakfast I took a quick hike to get a better view of Gjendes which is supposed to have a peculiar green color, but not today. It was a beautiful lake nonetheless.

I changed back into my cycling gear and was back on the road by 10:30 AM hoping to catch the 15:24 train to Oslo from Ringebu. There was a nice steady descent and it was clear the worst climbing was behind me. Unfortunately, 45 minutes onto the ride I had my second flat. I found the whole in the tube and was set to patch it when I realized that I must have left my patch kit in my luggage at Stig’s. I carefully checked my tire for rocks, glass and thorns and put on my last spare tube.

I continued down route 51 through wooded forests following the Sjoa River until I came to road 257, a 32 km stretch once named the most beautiful road in Norway. After a nice long descent I stopped in Heidal to eat the sandwiches I had made at Gjendesheim.

Back on the road, I followed route 257 along the Sjoa River as it ran through a deep canyon. At the end of 257, my plan was to go south on an old road on the west side of the river that paralleled the busy E6 highway which ran on the east side. After an unsuccessful attempt at finding the old road, I stopped in a Shell station, bought some water and asked the clerk if there was another road besides E6 to Ringebu. She looked at me oddly, clearly not understanding my English. After checking my map for a third time, I decided to take E6 about 8 km south to Kvam where there should be a bridge where I could cross the river and get on the old road. During the entire trip I felt totally safe on the Norwegian roads. The speed limits are pretty restrictive in Norway and the drivers were always courteous when passing. E6 was another story and I was glad when I was able to finally get off it.

The remainder of the ride to Ringebu was relatively uneventful although the backpack began to feel like lead and every minor hill took a major effort. With 10 km to Ringebu the road turned to dirt and I prayed that I’d make it to the train without a flat. I guess it worked.

At 16:30, I arrived at Ringebu too late to catch the 15:24. After a sponge bath and some refueling, I took the 17:54 back to Oslo, exhausted but satisfied.