Wednesday, December 28, 2011


(Today's photo) Albert wiining another one with style, with beer cups everywhere. The boy has mad skillz on a cross bike and if he makes the front group in sketchy conditions you can wave good-bye to the Little Prince. This race happened just this morning in Loenhout. Take a look the exciting Last lap of Loenhout right here.

Yeah, I'm getting totally addicted to Cycling Fan / Sporza live feeds of European cyclocross. These things are fantastic. If you haven't got the bug, get it - it's simple it's free. There's nothing like watching Styby, Nys, Albert, Pauwels, Wellens and the boys slugging it out on the best courses in the world.


It was a true Crazy Bastard night of a ride that's for sure. About a dozen or showed up and rolled out, but owing to a miscommunication and a late arrival, the group was split and rode in opposite directions. (The front group didn't even know it until we were at 5 mile!) Here's a tip: if you know you have someone that is going to be a little late for the 6:00 roll-out let us know when you arrive, not at 5:59:30 before we're warmed up and ready to roll. If we know we're going to have to wait, we can sit in our vehicles and keep warm until the late people arrive and get ready. While we're waiting can play with these guys, in our cars, trucks, vans and Granpamobiles until everyone is ready to go:

Actually this looks a lot like the people that were riding in the second group last night.

While I don't have a lot of shots of lights bobbling along the muddy and snowy roads, here are a few shots of the aftermath which are always enjoyable to view - especially if you don't have to go to the car wash today to clean up the mess.

Amazing Feets! A ride in icy, snowy, and muddy conditions would be complete with out the obligatory shot of Tom Boonen's Sister's Naked Ankles™.

Tom Boonen's Sister, AKA Julie Whalen likes it cold apparently. The running shoes she rocked last night had mesh all over the toe decks. Perhaps, though, they were plugged. My boots were entirely encased in a sheet of frozen mud that looked and felt like frozen peanut brittle and shattered when stomped.

After sitting in the warmth of the GrandpaVan™ the peanut brittle mud finally fell off, and this is what greeted me this morning for the Morning After Unloading™. The crank arms were entirely coated in that  shit. Thank God for Single Speed Cross bikes!

I wondered why the rear brake was frozen and wouldn't work. Rolling into the lot at the very end of the ride I grabbed a handful of brake (first time in miles - with an SS you don't really use much brake) to discover that the lever wouldn't operate - completely frozen until it had a few good squeezes.  I'm thinking that the peanut brittle was frozen right up to the stop. The area where it's missing is from the last pull that broke it free.


I'm getting tired of the same-old bad service that refuses to evolve with the times, so I'm taking a break from the same-old-after-ride joint for awhile.
Again the group broke up last night when it came to selecting the bar. I'm swearing off the Old Haunt™  and am searching for alternative water-hole that:

1) Has the ability to split the bill
2) Brings drinks to your table
3) Brings food to your table
4) Doesn't charge you for other people's food and drinks
5) Doesn't offer fights in the parking lot as a dessert item

While I know habits are hard to break and the Old Haunt™ is closer and familiar, I went to another after-ride favorite in Ada last night, Vitatles, with Flying Bats. The service was great, and I was able to get decent wine and spaghetti, which is an after-ride favorite of mine. Compared to the Old Haunt™, Vitales felt a lot like this, only with Flat Screens with sports on them:

Could you put the Red Wings on, and I have another Two Hearted with deep- fried cheese-stix? Thanks a million - and I do mean million!

Okay, it wasn't really this good, but it was definatly much better. Better service, better food - but despite my cynical veneer I'm always hopefully that the Old Haunt™ will mend its ways. What I am suggesting is that they call in John Taffer from Bar Rescue to help them out.

This piece of work is John Taffer. If he comes into your bar or restaurant to help you out, run for the nearest exit!

Here's the show. Go here to see a clip of one of last season's shows that reminded me a lot of the Old Haunt™ and some of their issues. Bar Rescue is my second favorite television program right after Cycling Fan / Sporza live feeds of World Cup Cyclocross Racing.

This month's issue of Cyclocross Magazine looks a lot like this. Oh, it is. You can pick up a copy at Velo City in Holland, or sometimes, if they're in, at Barnes & Noble in Grand Rapids. Watch out for the gunfire!

Back tomorrow with a Preview of what's going on before the New Year's Resolution Race in Chicago this weekend. And have you picked up the latest edition of Cyclocross Magazine. Your disgruntled writer has an article in it - but best of all there's words of wisdom and photos of some of our local favorites in it.

1 comment:

  1. It was a bit of a frozen mud/brittle ride. Is there a ride tonight?