Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Veloshop Rickreall Rampage pt.4

video by Milkshake.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Veloshop Rickreall Rampage pt. 3

Tiahdactyl was a little hesitant on her first descent but she settled in and completed the race on what proved to be a very tricky course, especially after the first few races. The dirt turned to dust and all the roots were accentuated.

Tiah was always good for a smile.

Caitlin too seemed to keep a positive attitude over the difficult course. That looks like Beefa's shadow at the bottom. In retrospect I should have shot these from the other side, looking at the spectators. Amateur.

Dawn rode well, finishing 2nd in her category.

I hadn't seen Tony Kic all day and then all of a sudden there he was coming over the RWD a little too fast.

He pulled it off, said a polite hello and continued on. 

A friend of Dawn's doing her first race, I didn't catch her name. Every lap Drew offered her a beer and encouragement.

She finally stopped on her last lap.

Possible Team WRECK material.

Veloshop Rickreall Rampage pt. 2

I found some really great photos of the Rampage at pdxcross.

I got a few decent shots of Brian from Team Veloshop. He spent an afternoon working on the trails.

It was a heated battle for the Bearded Singlespeed class. 

New team member Milkshake dominated the Mustachioed Singlespeed class.

Will had some mechanical issues and dropped out.

I wasn't sure about Will's new glasses at first but they may be growing on me.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Veloshop Rickreall Rampage pt. 1

What a crazy weekend. I took over 300 pictures and I'm still deciding which ones I like but here's the first installment.

OBRA surprised me by opening up the RWD for the A race. It's a great short cut but very sketchy. Those that cleared it could move up a place or two. Those that went around got heckled mercilessly.
I sponsored Drew's entry with my volunteer work hours. He was going strong until he blew a sidewall and had to ride flat to the pit. I gave him my Fat Chance, which was great in the woods but a little slow around the orchard with a 34X20 gear.

The overpass held up better than I expected it to but it still required work between every race. Dabby gave himself a promotion from head minion to minister of erosion and did a good job shoring and shoveling.

Scott had good form.

Everyone ducks the first time they ride the underpass.

I took a break from the race to play chess with Baby Beefa. She's still a little vague on the rules but her instincts are good.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Veloshop Rickreall Rampage!

photo by Cory the Kid

This is going to be a fun weekeend. The course is shaping up. Kenji, the executive director of OBRA stopped by today to walk through the trail. He lives just over the Eola Hills from me and we ride many of the same local roads. Awesome! We walked through the route and he seemed mostly pleased with it. *
*technical notes :
Kenji identified and Dabby and I reconfigured several areas. The knuckle was taken out completely and smoothed over. The leaner right after the RWD was taken out. We're working on widening the top of both ramps on the over/under and stabilizing the whole thing by watering, adding dirt, running/riding and repeating. Both ramps are rideable now for anyone with confidence but for the race there will be a barrier positioned to make it a run up. It'll be open before and after, but be careful, it's a long way down. 

Tomorrow we are working on the ditch style segment, hoping to make it so all beginners can run it and the most skilled can ride it. Also we are pressing on with the widening and stabilazation work on the underpass and addressing the SE corner, a high speed, flat, off camber turn that could send racers skidding right into valuble Xmas trees. Dabby says logs, I say berm, Kenji says bales. We'll see. 
We'll also be working on smoothing anything that can be smoothed.
If you want to help come on down, you're welcome from now until Monday.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Project Underpass

I had some great pictures of people working, riding, tractors, etc. but that memory card seems to have failed, neither computer will read it. I found another card and tried to recreate the excitement by getting Natty to pose. She's a trooper.

The work party turned out smaller than expected, just me, Uncle Bill and Tad and Meghan from Team Veloshop, but we got it done. 

The tractor broke again, blowing a hydraulic hose and also breaking some welds on the bucket. Bill was able to fix the hose and take one more smoothing run and we finished it with hand tools.

It's a lot more solid than it looks. After a few setbacks Tad and Bill did some improvisational engineering and came up with a 3 piece design that we bolted in place. The 4X4s are socketed deeply into the hard earth and the pressure of the ramps on both sides keeps the whole thing rock solid.

This week I plan to add some logs to the ramps and make some steps. I might buy some long hoses and water and reshape the ramps. I think it'll need a winter of rain and lots of shoveling before it will be rideable but as a run up it's almost ready and as a ride under it's superb, fast and fun.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

getting ready for the work party

Uncle Bill fixed the tractor and we gave it a trial run before Project Underpass kicks off tomorrow. It scraped up the hard dirt a lot faster than I had imagined.

Natty was a big help, as usual.

The Make Out Ladder with new and improved run-around.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Prodding the huge, slumbering beast that is....Conspirasteve!!!

Dear Conspirasteve,

This article started off in a promising way...

How much in additional taxes are you willing to pay now in order to ensure that the Earth would not be 3 degrees warmer 100 years from now (assuming the science is even possible) - $100 or $1,000 or $10,000 or more? Should the government prevent us from selling some of our body parts to allow others to live or have better lives?

Are we likely to get better health care in the future with more or less government involvement? Are the advances in information technology, such as the Internet, increasing or reducing the power of governments to monitor and control our lives? Is the current global financial crisis the result of too little or misguided government regulation of the financial industry? Does globalization increase or reduce income inequality?

Then devolved into utter bullshit...

For instance, assume you believe global warming is both real and man-made, but you also understand that expensive actions taken now to deal with a future problem may not be cost-effective. Technologies are improving rapidly so it might be far cheaper to wait until the new technologies become available before taking action. It also might be less expensive to find ways to adapt to climate change (either cooler or warmer) than try to change the climate - people in Minnesota adapt to cooler climates and do not suffer lower incomes than those in warmer Florida.*

*Editor's note : If sea levels rise as projected most people in Florida will be under water which may lead to lower incomes.

Anyway, I thought you might mine a few column topics from it....the people are clamoring for more Conspirasteve!

Dear Readers,
Some of you have inquired into the inner workings of  the Conpirasteve Nation. While  broaching a topic of such taboo and tablue is usually down my proverbial "alley", I will have to refuse. I would also like to point out at this time (along with my absolute and resolute opposition to body surfing) that I will not be taking any questions into the workings of the Conpirasteve Nation's inner sanctum of round table discussion sessions @ any time in the near/not too distant future!  However! I will give a little insight into the latest Inner Sanctum Discussion Topics. Here on in referred to as ISDT.
.ISDT 1: If global warming is indeed man made, and indeed that man is Sean Hannity, what will my future grand children pay me @ this time to off the fucker?  Since my grandchildren have yet to be born on any specific date, or for that matter at all, is it cost effective and also what is the cost/benefit ratio if I was to OFF the shit bag, if my future grandchildren have yet to come up with a plan to pay their future grand father within any reasonable time frame? 
 ISDT 2:How will Humanity deal with the humiliating defeat of Hannity at the hands of Hussain Obama?
ISDT 3: If, in having dealt with Hitler first (Munich anyone?),  who and in what form would the republicans have culled their inspired electioneering playbook? I do not take for granted the intellegence of Dawhite's  readership, so I'm sure in the fact that referencing  specific dates to the afore mentioned matter is beneath you Dear Readers! I will not discuss further!
ISDT 4:Will Sarah Palin deliver us from the pump pain along with Mc-I-was-a-P.O.W-so-dont-ask-me-a-god-damn-thing-Cain with a (OMG this is my favorite) Drill Here Drill Now philosophy? (For the sake of brevity, here on in the republican ticket will be referred to as Mcpain.) 
ISDT 5:Will Conpirasteve be able to continue with this entry without more beer?  Who drank all the beer? Who is going on a beer run?
 Irascible much? If you prefer! I do!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Do not miss the Veloshop Rickreall Rampage

It is going to be awesome. Team Veloshop came down on Sunday to help me plot and prepare. We ended up going with my course design except instead of going the long way around the Xmas trees the course will hug the woods, minimizing danger to the trees. We also widened and smoothed several parts of the trail and took out all the low hanging branches. I think ducking is an integral MTB skill but I guess it doesn't fly in cyclocross. We also modified the hump and pit into a hump and dip. Both sides are rideable but neither is easy. We cleared all the brush behind the tall ladder and added a log step-up so racers can ride the ladder or climb across the log. We macheted and raked the blackberries along the south and east sides of the woods. We added what Dabby would call a "sittin' log" by the firepit thanks to Uncle Bill and his John Deere 4010. Unfortunately, after pushing some other giant logs around the tractor blew a hydraulic hose and we weren't able to start on the underpass. 
The work party next weekend will focus on the underpass, course layout through the wheat field, a little ditch shaping and lots of shovel, hoe and rake work in the woods.

Monday, September 15, 2008

photograpic evidence

The Kid finally sent me a working link, so here are his photos from the Open and the last Deathmarch. Plus a bonus video of a dogfight.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Guest Post : Conspirasteve!

Conspirasteve drops some political poetry on us....

which was later removed at his insistence...

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Death Barge!

I was almost hoping that Dee might forget about the Death Barge idea and move on to some new mania, but no. He keeps sending me links, which means he's engaged , which means I'm on board, which means it might actually happen. 
So Team WRECK, get ready. Start collecting styrofoam, pickle barrels, anything that floats, plus lumber, plywood, rope, etc. After the 2009 Rickreall Open we will launch our rafts and barges into the Willamette (or possibly the lower reaches of Rickreall Creek) and race back to Portland.

The Miss Roackaway Armada
We are floating down the Mississippi River on a raft we built from trash. The catch is that we don’t know much about boats or rivers, and we don’t have any money. We know we are blowing crazy hot air, but if the idea makes your eyes glow like coals then you understand what we’re doing. 

"Swimming Cities of Switchback Sea" by NYC based artist Swoon is a flotilla of seven intricately hand crafted sea vessels that sailed up the Hudson river from August 15th to September 7th of this year. The ships were a hybrid of boats, furniture, household objects, and other found materials that the artist compiled an then constructed into a floating barge. Check out the link below for more details on this interesting homebrew art piece.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

The Golden Mallet!

Drew called in today with a brief report from NACCC Chicago. As you may recall he won the Rickreall Open and a ticket to represent the team. He opted to skip the main race and concentrate on polo. He reported that in an early pick up game crash he suffered a traumatic end of the handlebars blow to the back. We used to call this a core sample, now we call it a Billdozer. Drew shook it off kept playing, and though TW didn't win the tournament, he went on to score 27 goals, averaging 3.375 goals per game and winning the coveted Golden Mallet.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

A missive from Doom

Original Team WRECK member Dr. Doom writes in with news from the Single Speed World Championships
Team Durango brought home the 2009 SSWC by utilizing Chad's skills at bowling and Ms. Pacman.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Unburdened by Gas Costs, Bike Couriers See a Chance

I've been waiting for this article for a long time.