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Blog: Cycling

The dreep is back

28 Sep 05 by DL Byron

RideMy favorite time of the year in Seattle is the Fall. The rains will start again soon, no allergies, relaxed riding, and training for another season of bike racing. In December, I'll kick off the big miles in Hawaii, then a trip to SoCal in February, and an extended stay in Austin for SXSW, where I'll moderate a panel, hang out, and mostly ride Texas roads.

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Blog: Cycling


07 Aug 05 by DL Byron

GhostCycle I ride my bike around the city a lot and as a cyclist, have had my share of close calls, road rage, and frustrations with the amount of cars in the city. Last week, I started seeing cyclist struck here GhostCycles installations. GhostCycle is an activist-art project “to raise awareness for everyone regarding bicyclists on the streets of Seattle.” I now see at least one of the 40 GhostCycles on every route I ride. Backing up the installations, is an impressive map with notations, Flickr clusters, and statistics.

This year I started really lamenting how the traffic in Seattle is affecting the quality of life. That may have come from the failing Monorail project, visiting cities that have working light rail, or just being plain tired of SUVs, stalled traffic, and frustrated drivers. What’s happening is that highway traffic is spilling into the side streets where I ride and roads like Lake Washington Drive, a bicycle right-of-way, are becoming thoroughfares for drivers. I expect to get to hear the yells, honks, close calls, and more — a week ago, we had a driver try to run us off the road. I hope those drivers see the GhostCycles, think about cycling in the city, and driving their cars.

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Blog: Cycling

Vive Le Tour

25 Jul 05 by DL Byron

I watched the last stage of the tour 3 different times yesterday. Live at the crack o’ dawn, the end again, and the beginning. I got a bit teary each time I listened to Lance’s unprecedented speech from the podium. As he noted, it was a dream podium for 3 great champions. The reports on Lance often talk about what he means to millions. Here's what he meant to me, during those seven years and more

  • I’d think about his training when I felt too tired or burned out to ride my bike
  • I rode technology that he helped develop with Trek
  • I wore a wristband for the two women with breast cancer I know and for my grandfather that died of stomach cancer
  • Lance mainstreamed a sport I love

Velo Images I’ve also been a fan of Jan, before Lance, TDFblog once quipped, “you’re rolling with the T-Mos.” In OLN’s behind the podium coverage, you could see the emotions, the utmost respect, and love between the competitors. Jan is critized much, when compared to Lance, but he makes no excuses, never quits, and rode his way next to Lance on the podium. I cheered him the whole way and thought the podium should each up just as it did.

In his final words about the 2005 Tour, OLN’s Paul Sherwin said, “It’s sad to close a book,” and Phil Ligget added, “except when it’s a good book.” Following the storybook theme, George Vecsey wrote Champagne on Champs-Elysees Sends Armstrong Off to Act III.

In their coverage, USATODAY writes about Lance’s next mission and this quote from one of Lance’s doctors stuck with me

“There’s this ancient Chinese belief that when a person is held in the hearts and minds and souls of so many other people, they can do better.”

After David Zabrieskie fell, CSC’s Team Director Bjarne Riis, exclaimed, “Lance has all the luck.” And he did, tour after tour. “I have to think so because this race is too hard to win once: too many obstacles, too many problems, accidents, illnesses, other guys get better, you get lazy, you have a bad day — I’ve just never had too many bad days — and perhaps that’s because I’ve got this army behind me.” Lance had an army of fans, survivors, and their hearts, minds, and souls behind him.

As for racing, Lance’s legacy can be seen in the Tour results: 3 Americans in the top ten. Be it Basso Jan or someone else, Vive Le Tour with a new champion and memories of the greatest one.

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Blog: Cycling

Time Sport's Blog

20 Jul 05 by DL Byron

For another look at the Tour, from a cycling equipment manufacturer, check Time Sport International's blog.

So, I needed to get caugh up this morning, didn't turn the tour on and even more drama with the Team Classification!

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Blog: Cycling

T-Mobile Team & Hincapie

18 Jul 05 by DL Byron

For another view of the tour, check T-Mobile's Team site. It includes english translations of Jan Ullrich's blog, tons of resources and reports.

The watercooler topic being discussed today by Tour fans everywhere is Hincapie's big win or big wheelsuck. Ce'st le Tour! A win is a win, but he did say he'd work and didn't. You can't blame Pereiro for being upset about it. George said he couldn't come around because of the crowds. On the other hand, Pereiro should know what happens when you drag a sprinter to a sprint.

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Blog: Cycling, Design

Riding with

14 Jul 05 by DL Byron

I meet Eilon, an developer, on a bike ride yesterday. Funny sometimes how small this world is. I flatted and he stopped to help. We started talking and waddya know, it lead to Internet Explorer, Web Standards, WaSP, tabbed browsing, and geek talk. I've been chatting and meeting with his bosses to collaborate with Microsoft to promote web standards.

Nice guy and good to continue the goodwill with Microsoft. I also noted, how he we stayed wheel to wheel, up the climbs and on the trail.

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Blog: Cycling

McEwen Diss ad

07 Jul 05 by DL Byron

McEwen I read this report on a L’Equipe ad dissing Robbie McEwen. Checked around and found a scan of it.

“Well rested?” says the caption pointing to Boonen, while, next to him, McEwens head lay horizontal on OGradys shoulder underneath a second caption: “Tired?”

For the McEwen hater, it rules. Of course, he won the next day, so that was a counter diss to the ad diss, but the ad still rules.

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Blog: Cycling

Sketchy Guy

07 Jul 05 by DL Byron

Every race scene has their Sketchy Guy. The guy they call sketchy, cause he's all over the road, doesn't hold his line, chops your wheel, is in the way, and is just generally, "sketchy." In a Procycling article today, Saunier Duvall - Prodir Team Director discusses Tour de France racer Nicolas Fritsch sketchiness and said, "I think that he has got some problem with balance or to do with vertigo." A team mate said that riding behind him is "like shaving in the dark," and the Team Director continued, "Were going to take him to a specialist. Its not normal. When hes in the peloton hes always got his head up, looking ahead, lacking in confidence." It is normal. He's the sketchy guy of the tour!

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Blog: Cycling

Le Tour is on

02 Jul 05 by DL Byron

Each year, the hype builds and Le Tour delivers. OLN’s coverage keeps getting better, and I’ll watch it everyday. I’ll also follow it online

And listen to the Lance podcast. Check the Lance Armstrong Infographic for more on the tour. As Lance said, in a recent episode of Chasing Lance, “it’s a marathon, chess, and a Nascar race.” I’ve been into cycling for 12 years and watching Lance in HD was amazing, especially the behind-the-scenes with the team mechanics.

My favorite to win is Jan Ullrich and T-Mobile. As the great champions have done before him, Lance will crack, finish valiantly, and a new winner will ride into Paris.

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Blog: Cycling

Lance Armstrong Infographic

29 Jun 05 by DL Byron

LanceThe Oregonian ran a doubletruck infographic on Lance's Last Tour yesterday. It's amazing. I grabbed 3 copies out it from the papers in the hotel lobby. Later, I checked with Frank and suggested he post about it on the TDF Blog. Frank did some checking and found it online via

The graphic and design was done by Michael Mode and Steve Cowden, the text is by Bonnie DeSimone and James Yu.


Jeremy Gilbert has pdfs of the Times Tour graphic at his site. A small one (1MB) here, a big one (6MB) here.

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Blog: Cycling


13 Jun 05 by DL Byron

From Telluride to Lizard Head Pass

It was a cold day, mixed with rain, hail, sleet, snow, and a climb up Lizard Head Pass to an altitude of 10, 255 ft. My clothes were soaked through in less than five minutes, as the dark clouds I'd been watching opened up and the downpour started. Pam agreed to drive a support car or I wouldn't have started the ride. It's 9 miles from the Mountain Village near Telluride (aka To-hell-u-ride) to Lizard Head Pass and the most difficult miles I've ever ridden. I tried to stay focused on my cadence and breathing, while my mind drifted into worrying about how much could go wrong. As I descended into the first of several valleys on the way up the climb, I noticed that there were no guardrails or shoulders. It's a long way down jagged rocky cliffs, over the edge of the road, and I was scared. I tensed up on the bike, as I swerved to avoid rocks that had fallen from the cliffs above.

More photos are posted here.

Passing the 10kt feet mark, my thighs ached and my heart rate was elevated. I breathed shorter breaths, backed off the cadence, and stood up occasionally just to stretch. To me, riding at elevation feels like riding in the winter: heavier, heavy bike, and stiff legs. Nothing felt fluid or good. I'm no climber, live at sea level, and completed the ride in 1:07. I rode very cautiously on the descents, around corners, and s-turns. I'm sure my fear was heightened by the weather, fast-moving black clouds, and 32 degree temperatures.

Pam passed every ten minutes in the car to check on me, take a photo, and ask if I wanted to continue. After a few times, she stopped asking. I'd nod at her, take a sip from my water bottle, and keep pedaling. On the final ascent, I did start wondering when it was going to end and how much longer the climbing would go on. As I neared the summit, the euphoric, adrenaline rushes started. I didn't have anything to sprint across the line, but felt the rush, it was like completing a 40k time trail and realizing you've done well. Any climber could kick my ass up to Lizard Head, but that didn't matter today. I was at altitude and finished a ride in hellish conditions. Pam urged me repeatedly to get in the car. She knew how quickly I'd get too cold.

I opted to not ride back to Telluride, stripped out of my soaked cycling clothes, and got in the car. I hope I can return one day and ride it from the other side, up from Rico. It was a challenge, fucking scary, and a total rush.

More on Lizard Head

Lizard Head Pass is between the towns of Dolores and Telluride and is named for a 13,113-foot pinnacle of rock that protrudes abrupty above the eastern end of the the San Miguel Mountains. In the 1890's the peak apparently resembled a lizard. It doesn't now and the story goes that a large rock fall off the peak and it lost its lizard-like appearance.

I was in Colorado for a speaking gig at the Colorado Ski Country's Annual Meeting. I've posted more photos from the trip on Sample Blog. I found information on the ride on the Cycling Mountain Passes website.

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Blog: Cycling

Only happy when it rains

04 Mar 05 by DL Byron

Living in Seattle, you'd think I worship the sun and anxiously await the golden orb's arrival in the Spring. Well, I do, but not when the allergy season starts early and I'm miserable. I'm taking enough drugs now to satisfy a Rush Limbaugh jones, but the drugs don't do much for the asthma. From now until the end of April, I'll be hoping each day for rain to wash the skies and suppress the pollen. I'll just ride around and wait until I can go harder and breath easier.

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Blog: Cycling

PainJunkie Experiences Pain

09 Feb 05 by DL Byron

The painjunkie blogs on his experiences buying a Trek Bicycle. I'm sure many have had a similar experience and I've often wondered about how some bike shops stay in business, but disagree that bike shops are notorious for being unfriendly. You need to find a shop that still has a passion, like Elliott Bay Bicycles, where my Custom Davidsons are made or Bicycles West, where I buy the Treks that I race on. The problem shops are indicative of the industry, which has had it's problems, but it's recovering and chugging along nicely now. I've worked in bike shops and suspect that Painjunkie maybe a pain to work with and if that's correct, he's the shopper that wants everything you don't have on the sales floor and wants to talk about it all day and then buy it mail order. As his slogan states, "nothing is fun until it hurts." I wonder how hard it is to sell to PainJunkie, especially if he isn't having fun unless it hurts.

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Blog: Cycling

Davidson Titanium Frame

06 Feb 05 by DL Byron

small frame The old "D" is on sale at eBay. It was a tough choice, the Davidson was my first custom bicycle and I'm attached to it. The attachment was even stronger when I brought it home from the shop all cleaned, polished, and with new decals. I rode that bike many miles, including a tour of Alaska, and sold it to downsize my collection. I had another custom Davidson built, specifically to tour and ride in the rain. When I stop racing, I'll have another built. It'll be another love bike, like the first Davidson was.

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Blog: Cycling

Riding Las Vegas

24 Dec 04 by DL Byron

Redrock You don't know a town 'till you ride through it. Vegas was a miserable ride of strip malls, side streets, heavy traffic, horrible tasting water and urban decay until we got out of the city and into Red Rock Canyon. Once there, we rode a scenic, curvy, and hilly 13 mile loop with a fast descent back into town. Just like our visit to the Hoover Dam, the serenty of Red Rock Canyon is another stark contrast to Vegas, especially to the clattering and smoky casinos.

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