In Northern California we have the pleasure of being graced with somewhat gentile transitions of the seasons; allowing those of us who choose to suffer on bikes in bright colored spandex with like minded individuals the chance of being able to race from the early pits of January till the colorful weeks of September. Well before this stretch of racing months are over, the riders who partake in this self-torture, like the seasons they ride through, endure undoubtedly their own personal seasons of change. Read the rest of this entry »
Tiger Woods used to dominate the Masters, in his first nine attempts at Augusta he won four times. A win percentage like that in golf is almost unprecedented, let alone in a major as storied as the Masters. Tiger was as dominating a figure as the sport has ever seen. In the seven attempts since those first nine though, Tiger has won just twice.
So what changed? Well quite a bit’s changed for Tiger, but the reason many believe he’s not as dominant as before can be traced back to two major course alterations that occurred in 2002 and 2006. Those alterations were aimed at making the par 5’s Tiger was so accustom to reaching in 2 shots outside of even his range. Lengthening those holes would force him to play 3 shots to reach the green just like everyone else. These changes came to be known as “Tiger Proofing” the course. Read the rest of this entry »
Chico Stage Race hosted by Chico Corsa Cycling Club and managed by Mike Painter is the event I’ve been most looking forward to in the early race season, I’ve been planning for this race weekend since November really. A 90 mile road race with two laps through a four mile stretch of gravel and a few well placed climbs, a challenging time trial that is usually windy, and Downtown Criterium finale add up to one epic race weekend. My team has similarly been planning to hit this stage race for months. Curt Mills setup a rental house; complete with pool, four bedrooms, three couches, multiple flat screens, and a large kitchen with bar stools for planning race strategy over beer, wine, and great food. We had a near full squad of cat three guys ready to race (Curt Mills, Andrew Shimizu, Eric Brickler, Tyler Janke, and Casey Fallon), while a few key players were temporarily sidelined and sincerely missed due to injury (Patrick Callan, Travis Retzger) or family travel (Nate Dunn). Collectively we planned to take this weekend by storm, and luckily for me the guys were willing to put together a race strategy aimed at landing me on the top step. Their confidence in me was apparent upon arrival when I was forced to take the master bedroom; while some of the others took up couches, shared beds, or slept in a twin. Confidence is a rare feeling for me but I did my best to start translating their humble support into a focused approach to the stage race weekend. Here is how the race unfolded… Read the rest of this entry »