31 January 2011

Teams for 2011 Tour of California announced

Who will we see in California
The Amgen Tour of California will be May 15-22, 2011. The attending teams were announced, but I want to know what happened to Tom Boonen and his Quick-Step team? I'll miss seeing Boonen. To see dates and location of the stages please visit Tour of California Stages.
Teams lineup for 2011 Amgen Tour of California:
UCI ProTeam:
BMC Racing Team (USA),
HTC-Highroad (USA),
Leopard Trek (Lux),
Liquigas-Cannondale (Ita),
Rabobank Cycling Team (Ned),
Saxo Bank Sungard (Den),
Sky Procycling (GBr),
Team Garmin-Cervelo (USA),
Team Radioshack (USA)
UCI Professional Continental: Team NetApp (Ger), Team Spidertech Powered By C10 (Can), Team Type 1 - Sanofi Aventis (USA), Unitedhealthcare Pro Cycling (USA)

UCI Continental: Bissel Cycling (USA), Jamis - Sutter Home (USA), Jelly Belly Presented by Kenda (USA), Kelly Benefit Strategies - Optum Health (USA), Kenda Presented By Gear Grinder (USA)

Garmin celebrates their overall team win in 2010 (huge winnings, don't spend that $5,000 all in one place).   Photo by: PedalDancer.com
Amgen Tour of California teams to undergo rigorous testing By: Kirsten Frattini Published:February 3, 2011
The Amgen Tour of California race organizers AEG have tasked the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) with executing its anti-doping protocol, which was announced in a press conference today. The comprehensive program will begin 90-days prior to the event's scheduled start date on May 15.
Teams are now required to submit provisional rosters of 12 riders to the race organization with in the next week so that all riders can then be added to USADA's registered testing pool for 90-days prior to the start of the race. Teams must select their final eight-man rosters from that original 12-man registered list.
During the 90-day period leading up to the race, domestic racers may be tested with no notice. International racers will be subject to no-advance-notice, out-of-competition testing prior to competition in accordance with their international federation and national anti-doping organization testing pools.

28 January 2011

How to order a Coffee in France

Ordering and enjoying the drink you want in France
The treasure hunt between my cups of coffee in France is as much about the location as it is the drink, but it helps to know how to order what I want to drink while traveling. There can be a difference between what is on the menu and how to best order a coffee in France. Also the terms are not exactly the same around the world, and the pronunciation a little different. More importantly there are customs to enjoying a coffee in France that took me awhile to learn. Knowledge, even about coffee, makes the discovery more pleasant. Now all you have to do is concentrate on that perfect coffee location.
A morning café north of Girona Spain. Photo by PedalDancer.com
Your coffee drink options are:
  • Un Café (café noir) (kuh-fay) : plain strong coffee usually brewed like espresso but in a bigger cup with sugar cubes on the side.
  • Une Noisette (kuh-fay nwah-zett) : a small espresso coffee with a dollop of foamed milk/cream and a tiny bit of milk (a macchiato) with sugar cubes on the side. (This is my drink of choice)
  • Un Express : an espresso
  • Double Express: double espresso 
  • Un Crème (kuh-fay khremm) : an espresso with half of warmed milk (small café au lait). 
  • Grand Crème : a larger Crème
  • Un Café au lait (kuh-fay oh-lay) : a big-size coffee with a jar of milk. May be served separately to be combined by you. Served with breakfast. (Un Crème is really the drink that the French order when wanting milk in their coffee).
  • Un Cappuccino : espresso coffee and steam-foamed milk with a sprinkle of cinnamon, or powdered or shaved chocolate, atop the foam. Served with breakfast. (Again, un Grand Crème is a better option to order)
  • Un Allongé (Café Léger) (kuh-fay lay-zjay) : an espresso coffee with double the amount of water (weak black coffee). The additional hot water might be served on the side so you may add it to your desired strength. This will taste the closest to a 'drip coffee'.
  • Un Serré : an espresso coffee with half the usual amount of water (strong black coffee).
  • Un Déca (un décaféiné)(kuh-fay day-kah-fay-uhn-ay) (un (café) faux) : a decaf coffee.
  • Un Américain (kuh-fay uh-meyhr-uh-kan) (café filtre) : filtered coffee. Dark roast and from Arabica beans, but honestly you are in France, don't order a filtered coffee!
  • Un café glacé : iced coffee.
  • Sucre - (soo-khruh) - sugar (You can request this, although cafés typically bring a cup with two cubed sugars on the dish. Since French coffee is strong, you may want to request more, or ask, "Plus de sucre, s'il vous plait," ploo duh soo-khruh, see voo play.)
  • Edulcorant - (ay-doohl-co-hrahn) - sweetener
  • Chocolat chaud - (shah-ko-lah show) - hot chocolate
Here is a link to hearing the proper pronunciation of coffee drinks in French: (Audio)
Coffee customs:
  • At Bed & Breakfasts, or homes in France, a pot of coffee and a pitcher of warm milk will be served in the morning. The coffee and milk are to be poured into a bowl and sipped holding in your hands. Don't look for a coffee mug (as I have wrongly done in the past). You may dunk your (often leftover) baguette in the coffee bowl.
  • Cappuccinos and Café au lait are ordered at breakfast only. 
  • You can drink a café noir (black) or espresso any time of day, but the only time you should drink coffee with food is at breakfast time. Coffee is enjoyed solo at other times of the day.
  • That is why you will not be served your coffee until after you have finished your dessert after dinner. It will be a small espresso and is considered de rigeur. Never order a cappuccino or café au lait after dinner, it is expressly espresso only (café noir). You may request Un Déca.
  • Unless you are with friends and plan to chat all afternoon, have your coffee at the bar, standing up. Never order at the bar and then sit down at a table. 
  • You don't order coffee to go in France. If you want a rapid coffee, stand at the bar, order un café, be polite to the proprietor, drink up, pay, and leave after your quick drink. No tipping is necessary (unless you want to become a regular).
  • Also if you are a cyclist, looking for a quick break (and a chance to use the WC) do not sit down at a table, it will take you forever to be served and pay and leave. Your 10 minute coffee break will become 45 minutes very easily. 
" I like my coffee strong, not lethal!"  ~M*A*S*H

This is a fun visual poster to Italian coffee: Coffee Field Guide by Bianchista 

27 January 2011

Word of the Day: Penultimate

pe·nul·ti·mate / peˈnəltəmit/ adj. last but one in a series of things; second to the last: the penultimate stage in the Tour. (you must pronounce it as Paul Sherwen does, try it again). Used in a sentence (when referring to the Tour de France): There are really only 20 stages, the race is over after the penultimate stage. Or: Let the champagne flow after the penultimate stage. Or: First there is the penultimate, then there is the ultimate. 

As opposed to the Queen Stage (the hardest stage), or as we would say in American jargon The Mother of All Stages. Used in a sentence: What a Mother that was.

26 January 2011

More Images from the 2010 Tour of California - I

ATOC - Palmdale, California May 21, 2010 
In this hiatus between big races, I thought I would share more pictures of the 2010 Tour of California. I have so many cool pictures that I have not yet used on this website. This will be part one of maybe 7 or 8 (maybe more, I have a bunch of pictures from over the years).
I highly recommend going to a stage start whenever the Tour of California selects a small town. The experience is unmatched. The town of Palmdale was very laid-back. I parked my car 5 blocks away from the town center and walked toward the shady neighborhood park where the start line had been set up. The buses were parked in line around the square which had shade trees and green grass and nice sidewalks that connected the team buses. 
There was little sign of the now typical VIP Area blockades (only 1 small tented area). Us common folk could enjoy the entire venue with ease. This remains one of my top 5 favorite days as a cycling fan. I was able to bounce around the start area happily taking pictures and standing right next to the action.  No traffic, beautiful day, easy access - perfect. I also had fun calling out "Hi Jens!", "looking good JV", and tried to cheer up and get Zabriskie to crack his shy smile (it was a tough day for him, the news of Landis had just hit the press). You too could be here (come to California!):
Please click any and all photos to enlarge
Palmdale, CA stage start
Johan Bruyneel making plans for the day's stage at ATOC
Chechu Rubiera delighting the fans (he makes everyone smile!)
Team car. This is my own new car, wish this paint job had been available
Relaxed scene, most of the crowd was outside the RadioShack bus
Bikes glorious bikes
This was Saxo-Banks Team Bus (tiny sign). 
No one hardly noticed Fabian Cancellara sitting in this team RV. 
Then Andy Schleck popped out
Andy Schleck talking over the plan for the day
 didn't have time to zoom-out
I rarely see tattoos at this level of the sport, I snapped this shot of Simon Zahner's
The great Tom Boonen
JV selected pastel argyle for Palmdale, California
Theo Boss
Levi Leipheimer
Paul Martens
Alexander Kristoff
Mark Cavendish
Manuel Quinziato
Tony Martin
Christopher Butler
David Zabriskie
Chechu Rubiera
Mark Cavendish and David Zabriskie
Photographers ready to head out, small crowd!
Jens Voigt rolls by
Andy Schleck takes off
time for breakfast for Bert Grabsch and the others
And my new car again, in yet another paint job
Then I walked the 5 blocks back to my car, and drove an hour home. The Tour of California is SO easy. 
Please look back at my previous post on the actual day at the Tour and more photos: Pictures from 2010 Tour of California. Or all posts from PedalDancer.com about the Tour of California (lots more pictures).

24 January 2011

I got in!

"Congratulations Double Triple Bypass Rider!"
240 miles, 20,000 ft of climbing, 2 days in July

23 January 2011

The Sports Interview

How to be uniquely predictable 
Do you think you can take the win today? Does anyone ever answer no to this question?
Same questions, different outcome, same answers. That is the Sports Interview. Practice the stance, the tone, the responses, the balanced enthusiasm. Do not reveal too much. Never say anything bad about a sponsor, coach, or teammate. Always say you are ready to win, and tried your best after losing. Be slightly arrogant. Always say you will win next time or say something nice about the losers. Always thank the fans and everyone who contributed to your personal glory as far back as your first grade teacher. 
The Sports Interview is a learned skill. I am certain I just spent my time watching a unique game or stage, but the interviews afterward are all the same. It leaves me thinking I just deja-vu'ed the last 3 hours.
Why didn't you win today?
Matt White was sacked today as directeur sportif for Garmin-Cervelo. The article was standard, the interviews were standard, no one said anything bad about anyone, no one really told the truth. I learned nothing. Bridges are too short in the world of sports to ever burn bridges so tightly strung together. I always questioned why Matt White was in a leadership position for Garmin in the first place. Whenever I'd watch the team's strategy talks in the back of the bus prior to a stage start, there was a awkwardness between the riders and Matt White. But I will never know if what I perceived was true or why Matt White was fired today. No one talks. 
I love my team. I love the management. I love the fans. 
Same old responses. I am happy with this (highly dysfunctional) team, I am happy riding for my (less talented) teammate, using the team sponsored equipment (regardless of fit). I happy handing my bike to my teammate or carrying his food for 7 km up a climb, I am happy giving up the win for a teammate while worrying about my own pro contract next year knowing I only have another 4 years in the sport to make my own mark. But I will remain positive and predictable in every Sports Interview. Because I am paid to do so. Perhaps that is the true discipline of an athlete.
I recently attended a cycling team launch party in Denver. I watched Dave Towle introduce and interview each rider. He made them seem unique. Dave Towle is very good at what he does, but he needs the athletes to give a little during the interview to make it somewhat interesting. I remember watching Neal Rogers of VeloNews interview David Zabriskie at the Tour de France a few years back, Rogers unleashed a much too planned out 10 sentence long question to Zabriskie packed full of facts and then paused expecting an insightful response. Zabriskie gave him 3 words and looked at Rogers with a smirk. Nose dive.

It is tricky from both sides of the interview, here Mark Cavendish gives back a little attitude at a "silly question" by an interviewer (in the video on this page) Video: Cavendish ready for sprints at Tour of Qatar By: Cycling News

Chris Horner comfortably chatting at the Tour of California is Palmdale, CA in 2010
Please say something different - please
I wish the Sports Interview was a bit more unpredictable. That is why I like Mark Cavendish, Jens Voigt, Chris Horner, and Mario Cipollini. They are Characters and not predictable, somehow managing to both ask and answer questions with true individual style, not like well trained professional football, baseball, hockey, or golf stars. It is refreshing, and worth my time to listen to them. The rest is just filler. I accept I may never know the real facts, but I wish it didn't waste my time. 
The battle is good
Battle and controversy in sport is what keeps the fan interested. I liked the battles between Cavendish and Greipel, Armstrong and Contador, Armstrong and Pantani, Cipollini and the Peloton:

What is your strategy against Cavendish today? Greipel: Wait until I'm on a different team and take him out.
What is your strategy against Contador today? Armstrong: Show him no support until his pistols don't fire and he is accused of doping.
What is your strategy against Pantani today? Armstrong: no gifts!
What is your strategy in the race today? Copollini: I intend to win and will grind it out till the end with machismo.

What is your strategy against Matt White today? Jonathan Vaughters: If he won't wear loafers and argyle - he's fired!

I think I will start posting when I see a good interview/video.  They are rare. But when an interview is good, it is well worth my time. 

My brother just sent me this scene script from the movie Bull Durham:
Crash Davis: It's time to work on your interviews. 
Ebby Calvin LaLoosh: My interviews? What do I gotta do? 
Crash Davis: You're gonna have to learn your clichés. You're gonna have to study them, you're gonna have to know them. They're your friends. Write this down: "We gotta play it one day at a time." 
Ebby Calvin LaLoosh: Got to play... it's pretty boring. 
Crash Davis: 'Course it's boring, that's the point. Write it down.

Post post follow-up 04/04/11: some smack talk from Dave Zabriskie, he could be talking about any sport in this oddball interview video by DZ

21 January 2011

Photos of 2010 – the Run

Run Kenny Run! 
My Nephew Kenny was recently featured on SlowTwitch.com's best of 2010 photos of triathletes from all over the world. Kenny's angular form appears in the run collection. "The form of the triathlete runner is peculiarly pleasurable with an elegant equation of balanced power. A 2010 gallery by Timothy Carlson."
Best of SlowTwitch Run Photos from 2010 

18 January 2011

Quote of the Day: Mike Singletary

"Do you know what my favorite part of the game is? The opportunity to play." - Mike Singletary (American Footbal player and coach)

And that about sums up my feelings right now, as I am full-steam-ahead in regards to recovering from breaking my pelvis (in four places!) 3 months ago. The fractures now feel quite intact, the muscles are firing away, and I am enjoying swimming, walking, spinning, and some incredibly annoying stretching exercises. Movement is a blessing.  (more on my recovery and big goals for the year ahead later). 

Right now I am wishing I was in Adelaide, Australia, watching the Tour Down Under. What a brilliant idea to have a stage race based in one city, where all the riders and fans stay together in one location day after day. I hear the viewing tents and mall area are great fun. The ability to ride out to different parts of the course is convenient for cyclists, logistics are much easier for the ProTeams, and the atmosphere of simply being there seems fantastic. Just the fact that the Tour Down Under's Get Involved section on their official website is so large says a lot. Australia does it right.

I am also wondering if Phil Liggett M.B.E. (Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) is wondering if he was the personal target for the idea of the matching kits in the Peloton in 2011 (Team Sky, Garmin, and Leopard Trek). Poor man, he has always gotten the men confused in the last 3 km as is, now it will be one big blur to commentate on the finishing sprints. No worries mate, he may generate some new Liggettisms.

17 January 2011

Quote of the Day: Dan Wuori

"Perpetual lanterne rouge. My suitcase of courage got lost at Laguardia." - @dwuori Columbia, SC

Inspired on a Liggettism: "He's really having to dig deeply into the suitcase of courage"- Phil Liggett, 2000 Tour, commenting on Pantani (who was trying to keep the wheel of Lance on the Mont Ventoux. More Leggettisms.

16 January 2011

Levi's GranFondo

Registration for the King Ridge GranFondo begins tomorrow 
Levi's GranFondo has grown into what could be the most successful GranFondo's in the USA. On October 1, 2011, 7,500 riders will ride one of the three possible routes from Santa Rosa, California. The 103-mile GranFondo route climbs over Grand Ridge, out to the Pacific coastline, and back.  

Update 10/03/11:
January 17th, 2011: Registration opens at 9:00 AM Pacific Time!
January 18th, 2011: Registration 12:00PM (PST)
September 29th, 2011:
Festa del Fondo gala fundraising dinner
October 1st, 2011:
Levi’s GranFondo!
The Granfondo sold out quickly last year. Registration was overwhelmed on the first intended day of January 17th, at 9:00am. The server crashed within 2 minutes as they struggled for the rest of the day to get it back up and going.  http://www.levisgranfondo.com/p/registration/

Registration crashed on January 17th, 2011. 
New Registration date of January 18th, 12:00pm (PST)
Registration was down from 9:00am-1:30pm(PST) on January 17th. Open 1:30-1:45pm, then down again at 1:45pm. Registration tried to re-open at 4:00pm(PST), then they gave up and issued heart felt appologies. They feel really bad about that. Now registration is set to reopen on January 18th an 12:00 (PST). So if you are looking for registration and event information for the 2011 Levi's Gran Fondo in California? ..... click here for more information (but don't open up 12 browsers and crash the thing again)  01/18/11 at noon - go to the official website Levi's GranFondo 

A description of the ride from the official Levi's Granfondo website: "Levi Leipheimer’s King Ridge GranFondo is a challenging, long distance, mass-participation cycling event that welcomes professional, amateur, and recreational cyclists of all abilities. While not strictly competitive, our rides are timed to ensure cyclists complete the entire course and have some way to gauge their performance along the route."
Route maps may be viewed here:  http://www.levisgranfondo.com/p/course/
Route Options for 2011 King Ridge GranFondo:
  • Gran Route: 103 Miles, 9,000 feet, 8 rest stops $135
  • Medio Route: 65 Miles, 3,500 feet, 4 rest stops $115
  • Piccolo Route: 32 Miles, 1,000 feet, 1 rest stop $75
Read more information from past participants:
Cycling King Ridge & Meyers Grade, Sonoma - Granfondo Preview by Steephill.TV
A rider's view of Levi's GranFondo By Bob Norberg
Levi’s GranFondo 2010 Ride Video by Fat Cyclist

Map of Sonoma County
Map of Levi's GranFondo 103-mile route

15 January 2011

11 Travel Tricks and 1 Tip

More tips to save money on Traveling
January seems to be the month to start planning: devising training schedules and filling the calendar with races and rides. And so my thoughts turn to travel - how am I going to get where I want to go? The New York Times recently summarized 11 Tricks to reducing travel costs: 11 Tricks to Cutting Travel Costs in 2011 By MICHELLE HIGGINS Published: January 4, 2011. A basic summary of the tricks mentioned are:
Travel Tricks
1. Shop Private Sales for travel deals. Similar to Groupon sites including SniqueAway.com, TabletHotels.com TripAlertz.com TripAlertz.com and Jetsetter.com. (I am not one for cruises or package deals, but if you are, this could be your ticket.)
2. Buy your airline tickets on Tuesday.
3. Search for coupon codes (use the box at checkout for a promotional discount code). Sites like PromotionalCodes.com or CouponWinner.com organize such codes into categories so that you can search specifically for airline, car rental or hotel deals.
4. Ask for a refund. Many airlines will refund the difference in price if the fare drops after you purchase a ticket (minus a change fee). Yapta.com. A new site, Autoslash.com, offers a similar service for car rentals. 
5. Avoid Roaming Charges. Skype and Truphone offer free apps for making cheap international calls using Wi-Fi. The Vonage Mobile app for Facebook allows travelers to make free international calls over Wi-Fi to Facebook friends who also download the app.
 6. Avoid Credit Card transaction fees. Find out if your credit cards charges a common 3% currency conversion card. Capital One does not charge foreign transaction fees, and Chase recently began waiving the fees on certain cards. 
7. Save on parking your car. Bestparking.com steers drivers toward the cheapest parking at off-airport lots near 79 North American airports. Rates are updated frequently, and sold-out lots are highlighted.
8. Avoid Holidays. Avoid the crowds and save by traveling the week after a major holiday.
9. Negotiate. Though many hotels say that they offer their best rates online, it pays to ask the front desk for a lower rate. (If you have the nerve - go for it).
10. Travel like a student. Student travel agencies like STATravel.com, StudentCity and StudentUniverse have begun to extend their low prices to nonstudents and older travelers. 
11. Don't check a bag. Checking bags can quickly add up, with airlines charging between $15 and $35 a bag. (This does not work for bikes however) 

Travel Tip
1. Use Twitter. I learned long ago that if my flight is canceled, do no get in line at the customer service counter. I always keep the phone number of all my airlines in my cell phone so that the instant I find out about a canceled flight, I am on the phone (being incredibly nice) talking to the first customer service person I can reach. If there are only 8 seats available on the next flight, I want on the fast track to get one of them. Now there is a new faster trick, certain airlines now employ Twitter Specialists, trained and ready to read and respond to your tweets. So before you travel, remember to follow your airline on Twitter. Then you will be ready to tweet for help. You are not simply putting your tweet out to the world, you are speaking to an airline representative. Read more in this article: For Some Travelers Stranded in Airports, Relief Is in 140 Characters.

Flash Sales: follow the major airlines on Twitter to take advantage of "Flash Sales" that come up for limited times and are announced on Twitter.

14 January 2011

Cyclists donate to flood victims

In the News: Tour Down Under racers donate Sunday’s prize money to Australian flood relief By Published Jan 14th 2011 2:21 PM EST, VeloNews.com
Excerpt: Riders at the Tour Down Under are donating prize money from the event’s kick-off race to victims of the flooding in Queensland, Australia, race officials announced Friday. All the 133 riders have agreed to donate the entire individual prize list from Sunday’s Cancer Council Classic, $12,000 Australian ($12,015 U.S.).
Fellow Queenslander Robbie McEwen and his RadioShack teammate Lance Armstrong are raising funds through a group ride, promoted via Twitter, to be held Saturday. Victims of the disaster will be remembered with a minute’s silence prior to the start of stage 2 on Wednesday. To bid for a signed team jersey visit ebay.com.au starting Sunday. And donations can be made directly to the Flood Relief Appeal.

The Santos Tour Down Under in Adelaide, Australia begins January 16-23, 2011.

Sponsorship pays off

In the News: Study Shows Armstrong Sponsorship Paid Off for Postal Service By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Published: January 14, 2011
Excerpt: LOS ANGELES (AP) - Studies commissioned by the United States Postal Service estimated the agency received at least three times the value of the $32 million it spent sponsoring Lance Armstrong’s cycling teams during their heyday.
Reports by two marketing firms covering 2001 to 2004, obtained by The Associated Press, state the Postal Service received $103.6 million in domestic value from sponsoring the Armstrong-led teams during his run of Tour de France wins from 1999 to 2005.

13 January 2011

2011 Vuelta a España route

The route of the Vuelta a España was announced yesterday 

VeloNation.com did a good write up describing the stages of the Spanish Grand Tour (August 20-September 11, 2011) and it's ten mountain stages.

Vuelta 2011 very much for the climbers, but lacks explosive finale of 2010 VeloNtaion, by Shane Stokes, Or

PEZ On The Scene: Vuelta a España '11 Presentation Friday, January 14, 2011  9:03:21 AM PT

12 January 2011

Talk about personality

HTC-High Road Men's Team Bio
This is the time of year of formal team presentations, jersey design announcements, and team training camps. The fun time of year when I see the out-of-lycra personalities of the riders. As a fan of pro cycling I enjoy reading the magazines and watching the online news and live videos. Why? Because later in the spring and summer when I am at races being a fan, I have a split second to recognize a rider, so I study up ahead of time.
When you watch this HTC-High Road team press release you can see the individual spirit of the rider shine through, when you are at a big event, the colored lycra tends to meld the riders into one. But the more you see them out of their lycra, being themselves, the more fun it is to recognize the riders and cheer them on at races.
Have a gander, I dare you to understand what Mark Cavendish is saying ... ("nothing worse than a bland person." I couldn't agree more!), or Bob Stapleton, (lard=lot).

video posted by @Mark_Renshaw on Twitter today

Here is the team Liquigas-Cannondale "Never Settle" video (these moody video montages are getting very popular). Oh those Italians - such emotion. 

video posted by @IvanBasso in Titter today on Twitter

11 January 2011

USA Cycling Events for 2011

Time to start planning for the year ahead
2011 USA Cycling National Championship Calendar
April 16: BMX National Championships – Chula Vista, Calif.
May 6-8: Collegiate Road National Championships – Madison, Wis.
May 28-30: USA Cycling Professional Road & Time Trial National Championships – Greenville, S.C.
June 22-26: USA Cycling Elite, U23 & Junior Road National Championships – Augusta, Ga.
July 7-10: USA Cycling Junior Track National Championships – Frisco, Texas
July 14-17: USA Cycling Cross Country Mountain Bike National Championships – Sun Valley, Idaho
Aug. 2-7: USA Cycling Masters Track National Championships – Trexlertown, Pa.
Aug. 20: USA Cycling Professional Criterium Championships – Grand Rapids, Mich.
Aug. 31-Sept. 4: USA Cycling Masters Road National Championships – Bend, Ore.
Sept. 15-17: USA Cycling Collegiate Track National Championship – Indianapolis, Ind.
Sept. 17: USA Cycling Marathon Mountain Bike National Championships – Bend, Ore.
Sept. 24-25: USA Cycling Gravity Mountain Bike National Championships – Beech Mountain, N.C.
Sept. 29-Oct. 3: USA Cycling Elite Track National Championships – Carson, Calif.
Oct. 1-2: USA Cycling 24-Hour Mountain Bike National Championships – Colorado Springs, Colo.
Oct. 28-30: USA Cycling Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championships – Davis, W. Va.
Jan. 4-8: USA Cycling Cyclo-cross National Championships – Madison, Wis.
Date TBD: USA Cycling Track Tandem Sprint National Championships – Trexlertown, Pa.

For those of us who don't do National Championships - you can check out:
Bike (and running) events at:  PreRace.com or at Bicycle Events Colorado
Local Colorado race schedule at American Cycling Assoiation (ACA)

08 January 2011

20,000+ views and growing

I write a cycling travel blog, a pro tour cycling fan blog
What exactly does that mean? I had no idea. Over the past 9 months I have learned a lot about writing a blog. I have a friend that I used to talk to about cycling all the time, then I decided I needed to write out my curiosities which were far too numerous and varied. My blog topics come from my daily thoughts. I am motivated from what excites me, through reading and researching, and by talking with others (mainly my cycling crazed family members). 
Cycling is a fascinating sport. Racing, riding, training, equipment, traveling, being a fan, following the athletes, planning rides, recovering from rides, and for me, mainly enjoying the social side of this sport. It has been quite the journey, and like so many journeys in life, I had no idea where it would lead.
I quickly realized I was not going to write the typical cycling blog about my training ride where I cranked out all of 250 watts, came home to a blueberry recovery drink, and went all wild and crazy once a week and drank a beer. I couldn't bore myself more. What I did learn is that every day I am curious. Curiosity drives me, and delights me. I also learned that once a ride or race is over I quickly forget who won.
This blog is not about race results, this blog is about the experience of cycling. The fun whimsical ability to push ourselves and laugh at ourselves in sport. Sport is fun. Cycling is fun. Which brings me to the second lesson I learned: good information allows us to relax enough to have fun.
And so I have adapted. I realized that people come to my blog seeking information to help them have fun. Chances are if I am curious about a topic someone else might be too. My knowledge might be 30 percent, but my interest is 100 percent, and my willingness to share what I learn is 110 percent. I have found my rewarding niche in being able to offer information and laughs about cycling. Thanks for joining the journey.
PedalDancer.com has had over 20,000 views from visitors from 2700 different cities in 96 countries. Thank you!