Ryan Dahl: Relentless pulverizer of the master’s 35+ SoCal ‘Cross season in 2013. It’s been amazing to watch him leap away from the field in the first few kilometers and then basically ride solo for the rest of the race. It’s been not quite as amazing to have him lap me halfway through the events we’ve done together.
Ella Johnson: Stood on top of the podium in both of the only ‘cross races she’s ever done. Plainly taking after her dad, and even though her super human strength is without peer in her age class, the most awesome thing was the way she cheered me every single lap. Dad & Mom have brought this little girl up right!
Carey Downs: Anyone can pay an entry fee and drag his ass around a ‘cross course for 45 minutes, but Carey’s the only guy in SoCal who can follow it up with a four-star barbecue clinic. Although beer is strictly forbidden and never consumed at ‘cross races, he also complements his feasts with a collection of Lagunitas, Sierra Nevada, and Stone IPA bottles that are filled with, uh, water. Supporting Oscars to Marilyne, Jeff, Todd, Will, Arik & Craig.
Robin Kaminsky: Spends her weekdays putting people back together in the ER, spends her weekends ripping them apart again in ‘cross. Robin typically races three events per day. Do I need so say anything more? Oh, maybe I do. She wins most of them.
Brian Zink: Named after an element in the periodic table, Zink the cyclist has an amazing similarity to the history of zinc the metal. When Italian doctor Luigi Galvani discovered in 1780 that connecting the spinal cord of a freshly dissected frog to an iron rail attached by a brass hook caused the frog’s leg to twitch, he discovered properties that led to the process of galvanization of metal and to the discovery of the galvanic electrical cell, which in turn led to the first battery, or the Voltaic pile. Zink lived up to his family history of dissecting live animals when I stopped to “help” him after he had flatted on the Holiday Ride. I’d been shelled and he was standing at the road side. Grateful for the chance to get off my bike and moan, I “helped” him change his tire by handing him his spare tube. Once he changed it, he returned the favor by dragging me all the way back to Encinitas … at 32 mph. It was like being dissected alive while having an ox gore you in the groin while pulling you with a chain behind a dump truck while going over an unpaved road filled with exposed tree roots and land mines. The ride concluded with what felt like being beaten by galvanized steel, in a nod to the history of galvanization through the use of zinc. Thanks, Zink.
Prez: Doesn’t get any sweeter than a lead out by a speedy sprinter. Returning from the Wheatgrass today, Prez hauled me up the final bump before the Hawthorne sprint and deposited me 300 yards from the imaginary victory sign. So what if it was just the two of us?
That Cop on PV Drive North: When I blew through the stop sign, saw the cop at the last minute, locked up the brakes, skidded out into the intersection, hung my head, shamefully pedaled BACK to the stop sign, stopped, and put my foot down, I knew the only possible thing that could happen was a ticket. Instead, the cop shook his head in disgust and kept going. Winning!
Alan Hill: Amazing conversation about Sean Kelly’s autobiography and “grit.” Real, true, honest to goodness grit. Not that plastic fakey shit they get out of a syringe or a can or a volcano or Rapha catalog or Velominati web site and prance around as if they were really bike racers. No, not that shit. Grit.
Erik Johnson: Some people ride well, some people think well, few people do both. Zen Master + Yoda Adept + Cap’n Bill Flog ‘n Guzzle, Erik had some words of wisdom about the journey vs. the result. I’ll tell you what he said, but I’ll need your credit card first.
The Hillbilly Cooperative: Founding members Sherri Foxworthy, Marvin & Mea Cambell assembled at Chez Davidson to discuss pubic shaving prior to brain surgery, how hillbilly teenagers used to occupy themselves before the Internet and cell phones (let’s just say nature took not only its course, but several unnatural deviations as well), the relative complexity and severity of various laws pertaining to the transport of various things across state lines, and what happens when you mix fine home-made beer with good wine and lasagna. Hint: what happens requires large quantities of oily food the next morning.
Dave Wehrly: Made South Bay cycling history by hiring an artist to body-paint a model in an NPR kit as a promotion for our upcoming book signing and wine bottle draining event. When I was in San Diego on Sunday I had countless people sing the praises of the artwork and admire the beauty of the model. My dad even called up and asked, “What was that girl wearing? It sure was skin tight.”
Phil Tinstman: Explained how the lateral trochantric medial laryngectomy in his foot, which had happened in the Tour of Vietnam, was going to require surgery. But in the meantime he just figured he’d keep racing on it. Dayum!
Chris Gregory: In sympathetic coordination with Phil, she decided to do a 60-mile North County ride despite having torn the bipolar arachnoid process in her knee. Halfway through the ride the pain got so excruciatingly bad she had to return to camp with only 30 miles for the day. Fortunately, her medical background taught her to treat the injury with the two giant Lost Abbey taps in the parking lot at SPY headquarters.
Dandy Andy: Perhaps jealous of Phil’s ankle and Chris’s knee, on Lap 3 of today’s ‘cross race Dandy charged into a tree root with his head and severely strained the subnominal orbital disc that protects the Achilles heel from getting twisted into the appendix. The result was a terribly sprained foot, which was bad, and a self-diagnosis of two weeks off the bike, which meant that he is damned to gain 200 pounds in the next fourteen days. Say a little prayer for him, and be sure to drop off some chocolate bon-bons.
Greg Seyranian: After G$ received a bogus ticket for legally leading the Big Orange club ride in the lane on PCH, Greg took the sheriff’s “advice” and did the ride today with all 70 riders riding in the lane … single file. It showed the utter ridiculousness of the sheriff’s illegal order. Hopefully, change will come soon, in the form of Deputy Doofus learning how to properly apply the law.