Monday, September 24, 2007

NHRA Fall Nationals

Alfred and I went to the Texas Motorplex this past Friday to watch the drags and met with Whit Bazemore...
(click to zoomify)

Whit is an avid cyclist who rides with his crew members and fellow racers whenever he can.
Oh yeah, he also takes a turn in this car on occasion...

Whit went to the semi-finals against Bob Vandergriff but hazed the tires at about half-track and pedaled, but Bob was gone.
John Force was involved in a heavy crash that sent him to the hospital with two broken legs and other injuries, serious, but apparently not life threatening. Hope is for a speedy recovery.

Monday, September 17, 2007

The Meet and Greet...Part 1

Kramer: George, you're becoming one of the gliterratti.
George: What's that.
Kramer: Ya' know, people who glitter...

I have been fortunate, in my various jobs, to have come in contact with some famous people, famous in there respective careers, be it atheletes, framebuilders, musicians, actors. Two that stand out are Roger DeCoster and Eddy Merckx.
Roger was a hero of mine back in the mid seventies when I worked in my family's motorcycle shop in LaPlace, La. my hometown. I met him at a meet and greet in Dallas in 1975, at a Suzuki new model show. My dad and I had our picture taken with The Man at the intro of the 1976 RM-125, Suzook's foray into a "works" production line. The photo appered in our local newspaper as a media blitz. Don't have the photo anymore - lif.
20 years later, I met Merckx at my first Interbike show in 1994, Anaheim, CA. He was promoting his products at the Gita Sporting Goods booth. As I was walking the hall, I ended up behind Merckx and decided to follow him to get peoples reaction as he walked the aisles. I imagined I was following him up a mountain pass in a race, with the crowd parting, nodding, and smiling. OK, it was alittle different than a race but you get the gist.
The reason I clumped these two together, is that they were born a year apart, in Belgium, and rose to the top of their game in the 60's and dominated in the 70's. Everyone in motocross knows Roger D and everyone in bike racing knows Eddy M, and I met them both.
Next M & G - just wait til I tell ya bout Richard Sachs.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

My Favorite Racing Bike

I was on my first go-round at NAHBS 07 when I rounded a corner and came face to face with Tom Ritchey's bike that he built back in 1974. It stopped me dead in my tracks. I first saw photos of it in an early Rivendell Reader and just marveled at the minimalist aspect and attention to detail. It's what a purpose-built racing bike should be. The dual-plate fork crown with open-top legs makes the assembly look trick and light, the rear brake cable routing thru the seattube uses no extra cable housing or ferrules, the delicate drop-outs with gussets and drilled hanger show strength and style.
Overall, the appeal to me is a no-nonsense, innovative, elegant machine that show-cased Tom's brilliance back in the day.
But the most important aspect of this bike was that he built it for his Dad.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

New Commuter-Oriented Website

Quaility Bicycle Products (QBP) is a leading component and accessory distributor for the bicycle retail industry. They are probably one of the most progressive in promoting company-wide bicycle use, many of the employees are year-round commuters. This means alot since they are located near Minneapolis. They are responsible for bringing Surly and Salsa branded bikes and products to our living rooms.
They are launching a new bike brand called Civia Cycles, and their interactive website is a must to visit. One can register and create a profile that provides weather info and maps pertaining to your commute; it will even give you a suggested way to dress.
There are no bikes posted yet, but I can't wait to see them.
Commuter bikes designed by commuters.