I get 'cross

My journal of cyclocross
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Baby wipes are a staple and always in my race bag. Especially in the cross season. They are handy to for  wiping your face post race, pre podium. Sprucing up your bike pre race when you don't have time to splash a load of water all over it.
The number one rule of pro euro cycling - ness. Is a gleaming clean bike at public events. Am I right?

Got some of these new Muc-off wipes to try. Not ideal to rub them on your face becayse they are beaded and ideal from removing serious grime. I found they are handy for getting in nooks and crannies.Good for removing built up brake dust in headset gap between fork and frame. They leave a good sparkle, minimal fuss and grime on hands. Tough rags that don't tear even when sufficient elbow grease is applied or forced against chainrings.

Summary: last minute, corner cutting, cleaning device.

Today this man sat next to me on the DLR. The dinky monorail broke so I looked over his shoulder for a full 30 minutes.
That's right I was within 30cm of a Kindle being used.
The 08.06 serivce from West Dulwich to Farringdon

I decided if David Barnes, aged 12 can do it. I'm sure I could figure it out.

Had my first go, ever, at riding the track. It was also my first go at riding a fixed wheel bike. At the begining of the session there was a tumble and 4 riders went down like skittles. My life flashed before my eyes, there was frantic wracking of ones brains, me trying to grabs a handful of ghost brake.
I knew I couldn't stop pedalling and I was on the blue, so it was a long way down.
Then I just suddenly pressed on the pedals and went up the track. It was a eureka moment.
After all these years of thinking track wouldn't be a good idea. What an idiot. It was super fun. We practised moves. Chipping off the front and riding to the top of the track and then using the speed to get back on. 
Practised a standing kilo start with an 88inch gear. I wouldn't have a clue how Mr Edward Clancy gets going on a 115 inch gear. OOUUSH.
I did a couple of flying laps to see how fast I could go. 21seconds was the best I could manage.
I enjoyed it and I'd go back again.

Thanks to Martyn Frank, Coaching Revolutions for the four hours of track time and very good coaching.
Martyn trying to get out the photo

Start of my kilo. Need to sort out my technique ASAP!

white and pink don't go together, i think this is smart.

Its been parked in bermondsey for a little while.

Bob 'Rcing Driver' Beaumont says
"Its a Triumph Herald. made from 1961 to 1972ish. the early ones were 948cc a bit gutless. They did a sporty version called a Vitesse with a 2000cc 6 cylinder engine. This one looks like a 1200cc one! They were quite common in the 60's but rarish now.
Dad. "

I like beas of bloomsbury. I always go there. its an addiction. 
Andrew Diprose (The Ride Journal) and I were looking through old stuff from Monty's first years when he started Condor .I found a photograph with 'weekend with Lulu' written on the back in blue ink.This is what was on the front.
After 3 hours of going down memory lane my fingers had that weird oily, dirty, grubby feeling. #oldvintagestuff
I put my hand up and said I'd do it. Basically nearly every day someone inside the Rapha Condor Sharp machine gets an email or a letter from someone inside the Western / Southern Euro Zone requesting team cards.

So far they have sent me
1. A coupon for french money
2. Stamp addressed envelopes
3. Envelopes where they have written postage paid
4. a 2 euro coin
5. 4x 5 euro notes
6. some kinda of weird mugshot
7. someone has asked me for a CD ROM of the team
8. a spanish chap told me he had the biggest collection of team cards in spain
9. hand written letters confessing love for Rapha Condor Sharp

Yeh right, like Mr Postie will accept that

I first Wikipedia'd David Millar (properly) when his signed jersey turned up at in a marketing office I was working at and the then Finance Director refused to frame it and put it on the wall. That was back when Saunier Duval-Prodir was a team.
I thought it was the best thing ever. He was a real cycling star and a British star. It had been signed in this awful thick black marker pen onto a lycra jersey. The ink had gone everywhere. It still has never made it to the wall of jerseys in that vast head office despite Millar's detailed explainations of his mistakes and his reasonings.
I always paid attention to Millar's results at various Tours from '06 because he's a Brit and on the British Channels they highlight the placings of the Brits plus he also places pretty high prologue's.
He came into Condor last year to pick up a few items but it was a Saturday. So I missed the visit.

I first heard Millar speak at a charity gala at Christmas '10. He was their dressed in a kilt and sporron, glasses etc. He spoke extremely well and I was surprised, not sure why, because I hadn't formulated any for thoughts about the man.
Last night at the launch I was invited, not that he knows who I am. I was chatting to head of the RC club Charlie Pearch and Millar walks over. He greets him like an old mate and I'm briefly introduced. I can barely see the top of his head.
And that was it.  
I wasn't able to buy the book on the night. So have pre ordered. Quite looking forward to it now. I don't normally get excited about books as I've always got something to read.
Earned myself a very nice cap, musette and branded bottle. In my musette was a packet of Shot Blocks for some reason I decided to eat them on the way home and then I couldn't go to sleep.
Actually that is so far from the truth its not true, but since I got shockingly bad at cycling for whatever reason. Too much cake, virus, too much cycling, these cycling super stars keep cropping up.
So 2 weeks ago I chatted to Victoria Pendleton. Last week I had a Pizza Express with the Rapha Condor Sharp boys after their win at Peterborough and Russ Downing sat next to me.
Last night I attended the launch of the David Miller new book at the delightful Paul Smith store on Floral Street.
There were a fair few names there as you'd expect and Philip Diprose's wife (The Ride Journal) basically grabbed Cav and forced us to have a photo. I was embarassed but I'm glad she did it.
Then Graham Bell from Ski Sunday popped up and I grabbed him too. 
I could get used to trying to get my photo taken with people rather than cycling.

I was given a present. Well, more that someone was given a sample and its not to their taste. They are tasteless by my standards.
Here are some points I'd like to raise about my new favourite bike thing:

1. Do you have a bag that you can see your face in?
2. All that glitters is gold
3. But proper riders don't ride with saddlebags? Well, my girl back is small and I can't fit anything in my jersey pockets. How else should I carry my wedge keys and gas for inner tubes?
4. Sometimes something is so ugly it becomes beyond ugly it becomes cool?
5. This is going on my bike asap
6. Shall I ride with it at the Tour Series, that is going too far isnt it?
7. Is gold bar tape is too much I'm not Cancellera. (I'll do another post about that)

The only way to get better at things you hate is to ride it and hate it but try your best. I was lantern rouge last night, I've never been that in my whole life. Pic by ViciousKev