Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Record Unsupported Commute to Work

Time: 28mins 32 seconds, unsupported.

This morning, Lee Nailing set the record for his commute to work, unsupported. This means that he completed the gruelling ride with no support team, carrying all his supplies and water, and picking up every single piece of litter he encountered along the route. Lee reports here, now, below. Here:

I woke up feeling fresh at 7.31am and wolfed down a bowl of my sponsor's fantastic Kellogg's Bran-Flakes. I then ironed my work shirt for the day and had a shower with my sponsor's great product, Original Source Lime. I climbed aboard my Trek 4400 Alpha Aluminium to complete my commute to work. Sprinting out of my front door, I felt I could be on for a record time when the traffic lights at the bottom of my road didn't change to red: This could be the day.

Halfway through my commute, I came across a woman trying to show me who owned the roads. I certainly taught her a lesson, by leaving her in a trail of my shit as I accidentally followed through when I farted as I passed her, straining with the effort.

Coming up to the offices, I knew the traffic light sequence was crucial as one red light would ruin my time. When I saw the lights change to amber, I gunned it, knowing my I was risking a £60 fixed penalty notice but fuelled by the adrenaline of winning (which I regularly suffer from). The risk was worth it, and I did a skid as I pulled into the office car park with a record time.

To celebrate my record time, I did another skid with a turn in the car park, before trouncing into the office to beat my chest and claim bragging rights to my commute into work. These worker bees will never know the feeling of winning.

I rule.

Saturday, 9 August 2008

Puncture Repair World Record

After smoking it past some noobs on the Spooky Wood section of Glentress, I realised I had been riding for the preceeding 3 days in Scotland with a flat tyre. While we had a breather at the bottom, Shane challenged me to break the puncture repair world record. After much discussion, we realised that this record didn't exist - I couldn't believe it either! So we set about setting a new benchmark. 1 minute 19 seconds later, the record was set.
Here are the conditions of entry:
- The wheel must contain an existing inner tube.
- The puncture must be a 'snakebite' type, induced by a drop of at least 3 foot.
- The pump used must be a mini-pump that can be fitted into a backpack.
- The backpack must be worn at all times during the tyre change.
- All punctured tubes must be carried for the remainer of the ride.
- All tyres must be pumped to a pressure of 40psi (at 0-500m above sea level).

We shall be waiting with a warm pint at the bottom of the trail for any rider who breaks this record.

Sunday, 20 July 2008

Megavalanche 2008

Upon taking my first ride aboard a gondola, my intitial thoughts were 'wow wee, there's a lot of grey rock'. Sure, I'm used to shredding our domestic trails but nothing could have prepared me for the Alps.
The Team and I arrived one week before the Mega, thereby allowing time to acclimatise to the altitude and the colloquialisms for "PRO RIDER COMING THROUGH".
It's true that the Brits are making the Mega-style races their own. While making little impact at the top of the field, the mid to lower end of the pack was at least fifty per cent British. On one practice run I passed at least fifteen guys and three girls, all British (and all understanding my calls to pass). This was four days before the race and it was as I flew past one whipper snapper that I realised I was really on it, mind, body and bike all at one. ON IT.
The day before the qualifier was spent resting. The boys and I took time to fettle with bits and bobs after watching the non-serious Mega racers compete in the sprint-avalanche. The evening was spent carb-loading whilst catching highlights of Le Tour.

Thanks to finishing as one of the highest placed English-speaking non-pros in the previous years' MegaEnduro, I enjoyed the luxury of being gridded on the second row for my qualifying heat. I chose to take it easy as I didn't want to jeopordise my chances on race day. Despite not having ridden some of the qualifier I eased in to the top twenty, earning myself a start on Row C for the main event. Not wanting to detract from the brave attempts of the competition, I was amazed with the ease in which I passed everybody on the climbs. My Lapierre certainly climbs well. I was slightly dissapointed with the seeding that the organisers had implemented as Lapierre and I were getting seriously held up on the descents.

What awful, awful weather. And we top riders were expected to be at the start line by 7am! My casual approach to joining Row C meant that all the prime positions had been taken. Essentially I ended up in Row C-and-a-half. Not a problem I thought. However, following the scary Euro-pop beat that precludes the start, a thousand fully hyped, fully armoured, fully grown men made for such chaos at the start that my chances of finishing as the best-placed non-pro of Welsh heritage were dashed within 10m. Undetered I got up, back on the bike, made lots of places on the snow, then crashed again. This time I suspect it was the tyre-pressure differential – whilst inflating the tyre at approx. 800m above sea level I hadn't factored in the difference this would make at 2500m. The resulting lack of grip meant that I had absolutely no chance of making it as the highest placed English-speaking contact lens-wearing non-pro on an orange bike.

When I finally finished (barely inside the top 100) I could not hide my disappointment. Shaking hands with the highest placed French-speaking semi-pro on a dual-crown bike (whom, incidently, I have had the better of in the past) was in the least of my interests. I promptly refused the finishers' chilli con carne, dusted myself down, grabbed my orange Lappierre and heading back to the top of the mountain. By now, everybody had long since started the race. However, not everyone had finished – I must have passed at least 200 riders. Boy did it raise my spirits to see so many beginners giving it their all. Some asked how I managed to ride so fast. On any other day I might have told them. Not today though. Right now I was beasting myself in order to become faster, stronger, and ultimately more winning-er.