Monday, July 11, 2011

Little Miss Muppet

A few months back while randomly going through good ole stalkbook I came across an event that the crew from Race Elements were putting together... Muppets To Champions..... After a little more research and a little help from my work, I was enrolled in the Muppets program.. 8 weeks 3 mornings a week of organised rides, road rides, mtb rides, skills training, and great company.. 

Starting off with a welcome dinner at Arrivedeci Pizza on Good Friday it was quite a quiet dinner being that we were all meeting each  other for the first time..

Saturday morning was a Time trial up a section of  single track and Mt Nebo fire trail, 4.7kms. Timed on the way up a 10 min break and then timed back down the same section.  This was going to be our base line to beat in 8 weeks time.

6am starts usually at Cootha or the river loop during the week meant 4:30am starts to get there on time.. (can't say I am missing that part)  Road riding in a group on our first Wednesday ride, this was a first for me, I usually do all my training alone and had no idea what so ever what all the bloody hand signals were about.. but it was a lot of fun..

A couple of mornings up at Bunya we had MTB skills training with Aiden Lefmann.. Didn't this show up the lack there of skills I had.. Track stand?? I think I lasted about 5 seconds.. oh well at least there was room for improvement,...

Freddo and  Trav mixed it up for each session.. keeping everyone interested, singletrack one morning, Cootha reps the next.. The little tips here and there made all the difference to my improvement.

Saturday 18th June was the final day  and was the Time Trial of the section we did on day one..
With a Niner frame as the prize for most improved (thanks to FTR) we were all wired to smash our best times.. I was off an I was on it... I managed to shave off  3 mins on my time and when got to the top, I was very close to spewville, Sam can vouch for that... 10 min break and then back down we go... All I kept thinking was don't  brake, (being that I am a serial braker) faster, faster, faster.. 1 min off my down hill time. Happy little muppet.. 

Dinner that night  was suppose to be the presentation of the most improved but with a couple of peeps not being able to attend  testing that morning we waited till the next week (post 8hr) so the others could do their testing..

Dinner Friday 24th June at Simon's and Sam's, awesome feed of taco's thanks guys..  After a couple of beers and a bit of a discussion Simon announced the most improved muppet as myself.. Stoked does not come close to explaining how I felt and the support of the boys in the decision was very humbling. I finished off taking 4:04 mins of my time and lost 5% body fat.

So another trip into FTR (which is becoming a common occurrence) to see Tim to discus options.. Air9, One9 or the last minute suggestion of SIR9.  Too many options I had to think this one over.. After a week of deliberation I decided on a Kermit Green SIR9, being steel although heavier a lot more forgiving  on the body with amount of time I spend on the bike.

Impatiently awaiting its SS build kit

I can not thank Simon and Trav enough for all their help.  I would recommend to anyone wanting a little extra help with their MTBing to give these guys a bell  they cater for all skill levels..They have helped me so much with my confidence on the bike and cutting my times down and on a side note have gained some pretty awesome mates.


Tailwind 8 Hr 19th June

The final race of the series..

Rolled up at daylight to Old Hidden Vale for the final race of the series.  Although there nice and  early  I didn't get a chance to get out and do a practice lap, but after racing the 24 here only a month ago and the course was the same, I was happy that I knew what I was in for..

For a change I started a bit forward of the middle, Usually I tend to start towards the back.  8am and wheels were rolling.  My plan for the race was to try and stay nice and consistent and get through a minimum of 8 laps.It was great to be out racing with so many mates... new and old..

No mechanicals or flats and an awesome crew in Kel Pearson allowed me to keep rolling around this awesome course. A very close encounter with a Brown Snake was more than enough to get the heart racing.. The Carbide felt awesome after having it fitted properly only days before.. Thanks FTR

8 laps, and finishing 4th in the Solo women's gave me the points needed to finish 3rd in the series overall.

Massive thanks to Kel for single handedly crewing for 4 of us.. you rock!!! Congrats to Boris for getting back on top of the podium..

Bike Fit @ For The Riders

Thursday night beers and pizza with the Muppets clan @ ForTheRiders we wandered around the new store in awe.  After having a run down on basic mechanics and maintenance from Matt we were taken into the Bike Fit room with Tim and we were given the run down about actually setting up your bike properly.

After the recent acquisition of my Tomac Carbide I decided that having it set up properly is the least I should do.. I rolled into FTR during a heavily extended lunch break to get the bike sorted before the 8hr.

Starting from the ground up, cleats of course they were wrong as was the rest of the set up of the bike.  
After sticking velcro dots and sensors on points along your body, ankle, knee, hip, shoulder you start spinning on the bike and so does the little stick man on the computer... :-)

Although the changes didn't look like much, few mm here and there the change in comfort was amazing.  I went from a 90mm  to 60mm steam with a flat bar instead of a riser.  On completion of the bike fit, all the key point were digitally measured and recorded along with all the other information from the fit and emailed through to you for future use.

I managed to get one roll on the single track before tackling the 8hr, the change was noticeable straight away.  The bike felt amazing, the race is gonna be fun.

I can not recommend highly enough to go in and see Tim at FTR and get your Steeds set up. The best thing you can do for your riding.  Just wish I had done it months ago.