Sunday, February 25, 2007

Special Thanks To All, that helped make my Sebring endevor successful!

Update: 2/26/07 - Sebring photos! Check out photo # 34... ;-) Thanks to Rod Kuehl!!!

Sebring 2007! Admittedly, I had a Wonderful time at this event, but none of it would have been possible without a lot of people and companies that helped me get there. Immediate Thanks needs to go to John P at Motorola, for keeping me from bailing out of the event all together. Cindy G, also from Motorola likewise deserves a Big Thanks for reserving those rooms like she did! I actually had my own private motel room! I would have never had such a Great ride, if it had not been for Payton at bicycle spot. He not only put up with all my whining and last minute component changes; including getting my bike painted the color I wanted, but the end result was a Wonderful riding and performing bicycle! As for the event, the motel Four Points By Sheraton / Chateau Élan provided great service, nice and clean rooms and being next to the Sebring track, was a plus as well. Sebring Florida it’s self is probably THE Perfect Place to bicycle. And I don’t mean just on the track, but out in the area as well. The locals were friendly and the nice long stretch traffic free roads, really made a daunting 12 hour bicycle ride be a piece of cake! The Sebring 12/24 hours organization (Sebring Rotary Club) likewise put on a Wonderful, smoothly run event! Everyone from the flag wavers to the rest stops, to the track attendants and the rest, did a excellent job!

There were some last minute components I was needing and some online retailers were exceptionally helpful in helping me get my components ordered and sent to me, hassle free. Phat tire got me my Light & Motion light; while Beyond Bicycles sent me my back-up battery in a very short period of time. Atlantic Bicycles (Mark) got my Ti Egg beater pedals to me, just in time. (Thanks Mark, you are the BEST!) And finally, last but not least, my Charge Card company, Capital One was truly hassle free my online and in store purchases! I’ve got all the retails links listed below and I encourage you to do business with them; you won’t be disappointed! 12/24 hours of Sebring, Chateau Élan, Bicycle Spot, Phat Tire, Beyond Bicycles, Atlantic Bicycles, Capital One, AAA. (American Automobile Association) and last but not least, Light & Motion. Some additional notes: The Light & Motion ARC Li-ion Ultra lighting system worked perfectly and if I had lasted the whole 24 hours this BRIGHT light would have worked flawlessly. AAA is something no one should be without, PERIOD! On the way back my friends car died and we were in the middle of no where between Sebring and Ft. Lauderdale. One call to AAA and a tow truck actually arrived within the hour and towed us all the way back home! Folks, reguardless of the cost, AAA is worth every penny in my book!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

BREAKING NEWS! EZ Biker survives Sebring and receives an award!

YES, EZ Biker fans I have returned from FRIGID COLD Sebring! And YES what you are seeing is a 1st Place medal!!! More details to come; BUT for now, I have to flop in bed as I'm POOPED!!!

Update 2/25/07
My Sebring adventure started out with me not wanting go, due to my bike not working properly. Then in talking with John P. at Motorola, he persuaded me to do the ride. I should also add Thanks to Jose for suggesting the Euro Mesh seat for my Agio. It worked like a CHARM! Race day started out at about 29 degrees! I was already FREEZING just walking out the door. After 3 laps on the track, I headed out with a friendly bunch of cyclists and even had some bents join our group! At the 45 mile turn a round I stopped to rest while everyone else continued on. I ended up riding the return side a lone, but the roads were nice, the traffic very little of and beautiful scenery! Everything was good at tho point until I started heading North... THEN I ran into very tough 20+ headwinds that made cycling NOT FUN! Upon my return I got started on the 11 mile loops around a nearby neighborhood. Surprisingly, a lot of the entries had bolted at that time and the anticipated bicycle traffic was not an issue. Then as 6:30 PM, I was directed back to the Sebring track for the second half of the event. The Sebring track is really cool and fun to ride! It started getting cold soon and pit stops became a pain for getting back out on the bike and trying to warm up quickly. The one thing I remember from this part for future pit stops is to get in and out as quickly as you can! Don't linger, because if you do, your mind will start persuading you not to go back out. That's basically what happen to me around the 16th hour. I just took too long to rest and my legs turned to mush. Later I basically fell asleep on the sidewalk, inside a sleeping bag and a red blanket over me. I looked like a dead victim at an accident scene. John P, Cindy & Boris of the Motorola team continued on, with John finally ducking out, partly because no one (Like me) were awake to help him in the pits! Sorry John! Then as if things were not rough enough, I'm covered in blankets and then hear an urgent voice state there's rain on the way and it will be here in 5 minutes! Sure enough, as I uncovered, here came the drops! We managed to get everything in......... until I looked out in the rain and saw... my bike still out there. I started to LIMP (I could hardly walk because my legs were SO Tired) out to get the bike and I said forget it! Surprisingly Cindy & Boris finished the event in the rain on a tandem and did great! Special Thanks To Cindy for the professional message person she had come to the event! The the event was over and it was time for the awards event. I honestly didn't think I had won anything, but SURPRISE SURPRISE, I did win my age group in the 24 hour event and got a medal! (OK, I was the only one in my age group...) We haded back to the Motel and napped for a while, then headed out and stopped to seat and then headed back home. But then Johns Van malfunctioned and we ended up getting towed back home via a flat bed wrecker! BUT overall the Sebring event was a lot of and and some of the concerns I had never happen! When I did finally quit is was not because of craps.... OOOOPS! I meant to say CRAMPS! (But that too was a a slight concern... ;-) or even being sleepy! My legs just quit working, partly due to the cold I believe. SO will I be back next year??? I sure hope so, but this time I hope to be back on my Aero and not the Agio. The Agio is a nice friendly riding bike, but it's weight did wear on me through out the day. In conclusion, Sebring was BLAST!!!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Here's wishing all my Friends...

Gee, SORRY for the rather LAME Valentine Greeting. I really enjoy this day. BUT, I'm running around like a chicken with it's head cut off, trying to pull everything together for Sebring this weekend!!! And YES, things are going quite well and I'm really excited about the endeavor! In the meantime, I hope everyone reading this has a REALLY Wonderful Sweet Valentines Day and don't forget those flowers and candies, you hear!!!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

EZ Biker cancels Sebring Participation... :-( :-( :-(

WELL sometimes things look really Great on paper and in theory they should work flawlessly. BUT it's only when you actually have the real thing built and take it out and physically try it, do you sometimes realize, some things were just not meant to be. In simple terms my concept recumbent that I was planning to use at Sebring, just does not work. And when you are planning on being on a bike for 12, maybe 24 hours, the bike needs to work... A lot of people are REALLY SERIOUS about Sebring and have planned for it for months; maybe longer. As much as I LOVE cycling and have looked forward to doing this event for a long time; I have to be secure that the bike I'm riding is dialed in, safe and capable of being out on the road or track.
I have numerous Thank Yous, (And will be posting here those persons and establishments names, shortly) from the local bike shop person who FLAWLESSLY setup the bike, to on line bike stores that were wonderful to work with and got me the parts I needed for the endeavor! I do want to offer a SPECIAL Thank You to John, Juliet, Cindy and many others of the Motorola Bicycle League that worked with me and were allowing me to tag along with them to the event. That really means a lot to me and I'm sorry I can't continue the endeavor. Although I could still go and offer support; the thought of seeing you all roll off and start riding and me just standing there not able to be part of the show; is just something I can't endure. I surely wish you all (Along with my fellow recumbent cyclists) the best success at Sebring and I look forward to hearing your stories of the event.

Sincerely, EZ Biker :-(

Update: (3:30 PM) WOW, I've gotten SO MANY support emails from my fellow recumbent and friends that visit here! One (Troy) even offered me a loaner bike! What really great people you all are! Thank you all, so much!

Saturday, February 03, 2007

DUH!!! * WHY Women are the "essential key" to getting recumbent bicycling into the mainstream!!!

Recently I posted the following comment at the Bacchetta Forum! I have gotten quite a few responses from my readers here wanting me to elaborate more and so I will!
The post was done based on another thread about Team Bacchetta's FAST Female team rider, Sara Key making news headlines as the fastest woman cyclist to cross Kansas. One paper picked up and now numerous others are following suite.
Lets face it guys; we have been showing up at events for years and barely get a yawn from other cyclists or we are immediately cast adrift, because we have done so, on one of THOSE... recumbent things. However in my cycling gatherings through out the years, I've clearly noticed Female cyclists (Regardless as to what kind bike they ride) tend to draw a lot more attention, than some male cyclist that has the HOT new GO Fast bike at the event. It's just like what catnip does to cats! Personally, I believe the recumbent bicycle industry should seriously start focusing MORE (Not only on senior or older cyclists; which recumbents are MORE suited for) but also put fourth some serious promotions geared towards drawing MORE female cyclists into the recumbent cycling world. Unlike your typical cycling male (Of all ages) that continues to fantasize that one day they might ride in the Tour De France (Hence the reason they MUST continue to ride a Diamond frame bike) and/or are likewise terrified of being excommunicated or isolated from their cycling click, tribe or gathering if they show up on one of THOSE... recumbent things; female cyclists are usually at events for simple fun bicycle riding. Given the fact there are usually MORE male cyclists than female, the chance of a female cyclists being spurned from riding with a group, (IMHO) is pretty limited. (Hey, I'll do a 15 mph ride with a nice female cyclist over a bunch of hammerhead male cyclists any old day!!!) Women tend to be MORE practical than men and once they see the advantages of a recumbent over a road bike, I think women will readily invest in one, based on the practicality of it. And less you think women won’t be able to hang with their cycling male counter parts; WELL we already have a few women recumbent cyclists that can hold their own when riding with the male cyclist counterparts. I’m incline to believe, once more women start showing up on recumbents, the male side might just start taking a more serious look at recumbents and surely the news media will see tremendous human interest news story potential! Stay tuned! More to follow on this subject!!!