Tuesday, January 3, 2017

As a cyclist, I don't think there is a happier day than when you get a new bike! This was yesterday for me.  But let's back up.  A few months ago I was offered a sponsorship from Stradalli Cycle. I couldn't be more excited to be working with a great company and riding on a team with Bob McCarty.  The last few weeks have been spent chatting with Bob about building me the perfect race bike.  I'm not very mechanically inclined so I didn't have a lot of input besides "make it fast" and "carbon please".  The weeks waiting for it to be complete were torture but I finally had a free day to head across the alley and pick up the bike!  Longest two hour drive ever!  I finally arrived and couldn't have been happier to see the results.  I love matte black so I picked a matte black and yellow frame. I like to name my bikes so I decided to name her "Honey Bee." I came up with the name because of the color but also, there is a Honey Bee nest on one of my home trails.  It always scares me when I pass it!
Tom, Bob, and I decided to head for Markham Park to test it out!  It looked pretty but, how would it ride??  Bob made some changes to my previous position on the bike.  We dropped the stem and changed my seat position which was great.  We also left the handle bars 3 miles wide! This is going to be strange to get used to.  I had my doubts about it, but when a mountain bike pro that's 10x the rider you are tells you to do something...well, you listen!

The ride went great! Better than anticipated.  Markham is one of the hardest trails in Florida to ride and I have not mastered it yet so I was a little nervous about taking my brand new bike there. I was able to make some of the steep punchy climbs that I previously struggled with.  The bike felt super light and fast.  I will admit, I even got used to the handle bars after an hour or so.

I gave poor Honey Bee a full test ride!  I took a wrong line and went down about 10 minutes into the ride. Rider error, not Honey Bee's fault.  Bob took us through a bunch of mud and I was not happy to be getting my new bike dirty! All in all it was a great day and I headed back across Alligator Alley with my new dirty bike and muddy and bloody shins. I love this sport!

This week is a taper week.  I will be racing Sunday at Piggy's Revenge.  It's a 40 mile race that is partial single track/two track/gravel.  Can't wait!

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