Monday, February 25, 2008

More Than A Team

While Matt's death has come as a shock to Chicago, it has revealed something to me about my team. By 10:00am today I had heard from no less than 5 of my teammates regarding this unfortunate accident. We all wanted to make sure each other were safe and promised not to do anything stupid on our bikes that would endanger our safety. It seems that we are transitioning from just a team to something more. The thought that a fellow cyclists wife had to take a phone call about the death of her husband put things into perspective for me. Now imagine your wife getting that call because you decided to do something stupid or risky. Hearing from my teammates this morning made me realize that we do hold a responsibility for one anothers safety each time we ride together. It also made me realize how tight we are becoming as friends and more.

Ultimately everyone is responsible for their own actions, but everytime I go out on a group ride I feel a responsibility for those around me. Hopefully those people feel the same and wouldn't do anything to put themselves and others in the group at risk. Also keep in mind that we as cyclists are ambassadors for our sport whether we like it or not. Everytime we are riding in traffic we are making an impression upon those drivers around us. And if we do something stupid it may not have repercussions then, but that driver that we just cut off may take it out on the next cyclist he comes across.

So as a team lets try and make the right decisions when we ride together. Because the decisions we make on our bikes could have a lasting effect on everyone around us.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Beverly Bike-Vee Pak to host CTTS Stage

I learned a long time ago that if you want to see change, you must be change. So with that philosophy in mind Beverly Bike-Vee Pak, Inc. Racing Team has signed on to host the Willow Springs Stage of the Chicago Time Trial Series on June 15th. As a team we will be responsible for course set up, corner marshalling, timing, as well as registration and scoring.

The Chicago Time Trail Series is an exciting new series for the 2008 season put together by Steve Hansen from North Branch Cycling. The series will consist of 6 30k individual TT's throughout the Chicago area. Riders will be scored in each race based on their finishing times, and an overall series winner will be announced at the culmination of the series in August. The CTTS is currently working on sponsors for the series to help pay for the prize purses as well as merchandise sponsors.

The goals of the series are to increase the exposure of perhaps the most difficult cycling discipline in a new and unique way. The CTTS hopes to build a start house with a ramp such as seen in big European stage races. Also, because the series will be a USAC sanctioned series, valuable upgrade points will also be available.

If you have never done an individual TT then 2008 is year for you! The CTTS will have races every month from April through August. For info check out

Sunday, February 17, 2008

European Stage Racing-Indiana Style

Do you think you are fast enough to wear the Green Sprinters jersey? How about the KoM jersey? Maybe you are a GC contender, or perhaps your team can win the team points classification. Ten perhaps the all new Le Tour De West Lafayette is the race for you. The Tour will be held May 17th and 18th and will be a stage race format based on overall time. The race will only be open to categories 3-5 and will award points, cash and prizes in each of the three events. Here is your chance to be able to race three events in two days, just like the pros always get to do. The Tour kicks off with a very respectable 8 corner crit, 35 minutes + 2 for the 4-5 race and 50 minutes +2 for the 3's. The following morning begins with either a 20 mile or 32 mile road race, followed by and individual TT in the afternoon of 5.8 miles.

Racers can score points in three categories; sprint, KoM, and team classification. You also are racing for the overall as well. The best part about the race is that it is only two hours away. The registration fees are pretty reasonable, and they actually feed you lunch, and give you a coupon for dinner. The fields are capped at 75 for the 3's and 80 for the 4-5's race. If Hillsboro was any indication, you might want to sign up sooner rather than later. And since it is a USAC sanctioned event, upgrade points will be available. Where else can you score upgrade points 3 times in a single weekend? For more info check out

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Here's A Thought

Wow, who would have guessed that most of the Hillsboro Roubaix would be full by the end of the first day of registration? It just goes to show you what a high quality road race can do. There has been quite a lot of chatter lately on the local blogs about the fact that Hillsboro closed so quickly and many of the races were shortened for the sake of safety. The amazing thing is that Hillsboro isn't even in the Chicago area, and yet 95% of the fields will be filled with Chicago based racers. I kind feel bad for all of the St. Louis racers since this is their hometown, and I don't see even one name from St. Louis on the roster.

All this comotion and talk about Hillsboro has gotten me thinking. Why don't we put together our collective promoter heads together and see if we can't possibly get a race of Hillsboro's caliber going in the Chicago area. Obviously it couldn't be held to close to Chicago proper, but with all of the rolling terrain available to north, south, and west of the city, surely we could come up with a suitable venue.

This won't be an easy or quick task, but anything that is worth it never comes easy. For inspiration take a look at the Chicago Cyclocross Cup series. This year they are talking about perhaps 10 races! Sure a road race involves closing down public roads, but I know that with the proper planning and tons of work, we just may be able to pull something off. Why should we have to send all of our racers over 4 hours away to race anywhere from 22-88 miles when we should be able to put something together here that rivals or even betters what Hillsboro has to offer?

Maybe the Chicago area promoters can come together and share some info with one another, perhaps even work together to see if a great race can be held here. Lets make Chicago a destination on midwest racers programs, rather than us going to some podunk town in the middle of nowhere.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Hillsboro is Now Closed

The registration for the 2008 Hillsboro Roubaix has now closed for the cat 4/5 and 5 races. The races were capped at 75 and 50 riders respectively and closed within 5 hours of the registration opening. Thanks to Luke at for posting the link to register. More importantly a big thank you to Rich Pierce for all the hard work that has gone into organizing this great race again. If the sell out status is any indication of how well this race is organized, other promoters should take note. To those who waited too long, I guess there is always next year!

Registration for Hillsboro Now Open

The registration for the 2008 edition of the Hillsboro Roubaix has finally opened, and by the looks of it if you wait till tomorrow you may be locked out. They are capping the fields again this year and as of an hour ago the 4/5 race was 1/3rd full and the 5 race was already 50% full. Yikes!

Our roster for Hillsboro will be:
Elvis Falbo
Paul Morrison
Tony Rienks
Damon Nelson
Jorge Cerritos
Joe Castello
Dan Bomben
Sergio Moreno
Brian Smith
This should put us at a distinct advantage since we will comprising over one-tenth of the field. Since the race is only 46 days away, we need to really commit to a cohesive training schedule that will bring the team together as often as possible. The more we can ride and train together, the better we will know how each of us will react in certain situations. Once this weather finally breaks, we will be hitting the road as often as possible to begin to start working on tactis and such. Until then keep up the base work on the trainers or rollers.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Glory Through Suffering

I have adopted a new motto for not only cycling but also life; "Glory Through Suffering". This motto is a way of reminding myself that we can only achieve great things through hardwork and perserverence. Nothing comes easy in life, especially winning bike races. If you are only now starting to put on base miles, or haven't even looked at your bike since last year, then guess what? You may already be too far behind your competition to make it up. I myself have been putting in the most pre-season work that I ever have, and I know several of my team mates are as well. I should hit 1,000 miles by the end of this week and hopefully come spring that means something. And why am I along with countless others doing this? For the glory of winning. For the satisfaction of showing up in incredible form. For the ability to dictate what happens in a race. To not only react to what happens in a race, but to make others react to what I am doing.
I do it to bring glory to not only myself, but also to everyone on my team and all those that support us. To our parents, and wives, and friends that show up time again to our races all year long. Those supporters help to fuel that competitve fire within all of us to do better. They help to put a smile on our faces everytime we pass them along the course as they shout words of encouragement. We train so that we not only don't let ourselves down, but also don't let those around us down. So if you haven't been riding as much as you would like, quit making excuses and get on your bike. Some effort now will pay dividends in the next few months. If you are part of team, then you should be training even harder. Those other 10-15 guys are all counting on you to be able to do your part come race time just as much as you are counting on them. So get on your rollers, lock into your trainers, crank up the music, and get to work! Glory Through Suffering!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Chicago Time Trial Series

A new series has finally come to fruition through the hard work and determination of Steve Hansen from North Branch Cycling. The Chicago Time Trial Series will debut this spring in Sugar Grove and continue all the way through the end of August. The impetus in creating the series was to have a Chcago based series that didn't involve several hours of travel. All of the races are located just a short drive from the city in the collar suburbs. Each race will be a 30k individual TT and since it is a series, points will be tallied toward an overall winner. So far the tentative schedule is:
Sugar Grove April 20th
Monee May 11th
Willow Springs June 15th
Hampshire July 13th
Richmond July 26th
Woodstock August 30th

If you have any questions, or would like to volunteer your time contact Steve Hansen at

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

New Logo for CX

Eric at Mango Design has come up with another idea for a logo we could use when it comes down to 'cross season. I was thinking we could use this for any promotional materials such as flyers, postcards, stickers, even t-shirts. I would love to get some feedback from everyone. Heck maybe we could even sell the copyright to the Chicago Cyclocross Cup! I would like everyone to try and leave a comment with their feelings about the logo.