Monday, February 16, 2009

Tour De Palm Springs Post Ride Report

Mang El:
The dinner was the best after the century ride. Dennis parents in Law didn't waste time handling us plates when we arrived to their place knowing that we were so tired & hungry. I observed every body got a second round. There were enough food but I just concentrated with the BBQ sticks & kare-kare. Sure, I believed everybody was stuffed after eating a cake.Thank you Dennis & wife, (Fances) for your frienship/hospitali ty& extend this to your In Laws. I hope you had a wonderful time on your first century ride & see you again next time.

Victor C:
Weather was excellent and the kare-kare and bagoong after thye ridewas the best. Despite mechanical problems, over all this was a goodride. The headwind during the first 16 miles made it feel like wewere going up a 10% grade. We regrouped at the first SAG stop whereDeo and Louie joined us after their late start. We then allproceeded down Dillon where we reached speeds of over 40 MPH. Itfelt good to see the Adobos attacking the downhill. We were passingriders left and right as if they were standing still. Then all of asudden...POW...all I can say is Michelin Pro Race 3 tires suck. I amdefinitely writing a letter to the manufacturer. Had to ride the SAGvan to the 2nd SAG stop where I purchased a $10 tire for $20. Putthe cheap tire on and rode back to the finish line ending up withonly 66 miles. While waiting for the rest of the guys, I decided toride some more so I back-tracked about 5-7 miles from the finish androde back with riders as they came in. Did this several times andended up crossing the finish line 4 times and got some extra shirtsin the process. I waited for the guys about two blocks from thefinish and we all crossed the finish line together as a group. LaterI learned that the Deo and Ryan had some mechanical problems as well -Deo had a broken shifter cable and Ryan had slow leaks on bothtires. Thanks to Dennis and family for the after ride dinner. I'mdefinitely doing this ride again next year with all intentions ofdoing the whole 102 miles next time.

It was a perfect weather for this ride, but what makes it more perfect and more memorable is actually having a "fan club" in the cycling community. There were several times we were approached by other cyclist to have a picture taken with the Adobo riders. During the stops we got compliments hearing "I love Adobo". Yeah they know the they know the group. Just like Mang El said to me during the ride...the Adobo Velo name is getting out in the cycling community and we must be doing something good and right.

I cannot express how privileged I am to be a member of the Adobo velo family. I was the "kupad" rider of the group in Palm Springs, but the main reason I finished the ride was the camaraderie of the other members. Deo and El never gave up on me especially during the climbs, pushing me and sharing a draft when we needed it. Deo and El just want to say thanks for all the coaching advise.
After reaching the 50 mile marker, not only did I brake my water bottle holder, I ended up loosing my 2 water bottles during the ride and there was just no way i was going to drop away from the group. Jun and Dennis helped out by coaching me on pacing and conserving any energy I have left. Jun lent me one of his water bottles and shared his power bar till I hydrate myself on the next stops.
The best part of the ride is when you have cheering squad in one of the corner of the route. Dennis' family was holding a banner up in the air saying " Go Adobo Velo!!!" They provided a special SAG stop keeping us hydrated with Gatorade and a special mix of "super food". They provided us with bananas and oranges. Not only did they feed the Adobos, but Dennis' wife, his two sons, and his in-laws were also distributing foods to the other riders that was pacing with us (Incyling Club).

I wasn't able to join the Adobos after the ride for a Bb-Q. My wife was with me and had planned for dinner. Knowing the hospitality and the support of the Gorospe family, having a BB-Q at their home is the best way to end the day.

I had the privilege of staying with the Gorospe family fo e night. Words can't explain the total hospitality they extended to me this morning Dennis I went riding for a quick 17 mile spin just had lunch an am heading back home. My rib cage was hurtingon the uphill portions of the century. Hooking up with SoCalVelo (InCycle) riders who had 2 tandems made it a fast ride when they weren't having flats. I think the group had 15 + flat tires. - was the last Adobo to finishe becaus - waited for the tandems with the last flat making it a fast ride back to th finish with 2 tandems pulling me in. Riding with incycle was a very good workout. Wished a lot more adobos could of been there to join the paceline. With al the stops and waiting, it took over 8 hours, but don't be decieved, when were were going on the flats we were cruising @ 27mph+ hit 44 mph on some of the long down hills. For non climbers like me the climbing was tolerable even w/ a stiff wind in our face. Our club really stood out because passed most riders and would always counter attack anyone that tried to attack us. Almost every filipino at the sag stops would come by and inquire about our club. There was a couple ladies from lllinnios that stop by, even some "white folk" came by and asked what adobo was. A very enjoyable Century. Would you believe this was my first social organized century ride!

I too extend my thank you for the hospitality to Dennis and family.What a small world we live in because his father in law worked withmy dad in Pasadena. I tell ya, when mang El gets his motor pacing hecan crank. We followed this aero bike all the way to the second sagand the guy kept on his heaviest gear cranking on the rolling hillsand he took us pass 45mph the last time I checked my speedometer...Iwas too afraid to even look at that gauge. I didn't think the aeroguy wanted anybody back there but I had a blast back drafting of mangEl. I wish I had my video setup cause I've seen attack afterattack. There were instances where my gears were maxed out but thosetwo still kept on hammering. Compact is good but not in a chase likethat. At the end, the aero bike was abused and used by mang EL.

Mang El:
Yup.. that guy was very strong & fast but knowing that I was behindhim, he he... all I had to do was glance at you if you're stillaround. Yes Lito, you kept up with the pace & before that guy gaveup, there was another guy we overtook & got hooked up with. That wasthen when you did a good attack & boom... did the guy get away?No way, cuz if he did I was there behind just waiting. That was fun& very challenging. It's just like the racing mood/pace.You should see Ike before the first sag stop. It was windy & theroute was gradually inclined. All I noticed was, he just kepttailing behind Bong with Lito & almost 2/3rd of the incline hewhispered & told me "I was in my smallest gear", hmm .. finally hisside started hurting so we slowed down to relax but knowing Ike, hejust recovered a little then, he started sucking wheels again.Ike, you're something else & actually you don't know how to slowdown yet.We waited at the first Sag stop where Deo & Louie caught up with us.After the first Sag stop, Ike started hammering again when one guypassed by with a steady pace. Ike tailed this guy until he ran outof breath... then the rolling hills started. Did you say 45mph? Ifelt very comfortable with my Scattante. Yup it was fast that Ithought this guy will never slow down... overall, it was exciting.Then the Incycle came to our sight led by old buddy Demie. The pacewas very steady that even Deo said "We had a free ride". The onlyregrets were, too many flats & of course we ended up waiting.That was fun cuz most of the guys were racers & we got a chanceriding with them & of course I/we felt like racers too.Now, the Adobovelo group is more recognized by the Incycle group &we proved that we are not that easy to fall behind. At the end, someof them were hurting & slowly dropped.We regrouped (Adobo) ourselves at the last Sag stop & we slowlytraveled to the end of the ride. We got there almost 4pm.After the ride..... we just washed up a little & we headed toDennis' place for "BBQ & Kare-Kare.For me that was a good century ride. We experienced headwind,gradual ascending route that we almost pushed to the limit, fastpace on a long rolling/descending road where we had fun chasing fastguys...We also experienced flats starting with Victor & Ryan thenmechanical problem with Deo's broken cable. Inspite of all these noaccidents happened.Thanks for a good ride with our adobo friends ..Dennis/Ike/Deo/Louie/Filbert/Ryan/Lito & Victor. See you in the nextcentury ride?Jun Usi didn't have a chance to be with us. He thought we were toofar ahead so he just kept pedalling until he finished. He finishedby 1:30pm. Jun, you missed the group & the dinner. I hope youenjoyed your ride anyway.

Lesson learned for me not to use tubular tire on a century ride. Although, I was able to hang up with the group all the way but the hesitation that my front wheel might fold while riding would not let go off my mind. I got a flat on the first sag and the mechanic put on my spare without gluieng it, so, its pretty scary for me thinking I still have 80 miles to go. At the lunch sag the rear tire has a small leak but I dont have anymore spare to use, I keep on pedalling and pumping my rear tire every sag. Thanks to all adobo guys cause I know there is always somebody I can count on in case problem arises. I pity Victor on this ride cause he prepared so much for this, but his tire blew up on the 30 miles mark. Indeed it was a well deserve ride, inspite of some mechanical issues not to mention the very nice weather and the support from each cyclist from other clubs. Thanks to Dennis and family for a very warm welcome to your house and the dinner. Dennis even bought a cake for Mang El for his post birthday celebration and we have a small salo-salo and a birthday celebration at the same time. Congrats to all adobos and more power.

Dennis G:
The Tour de Palm Springs preparation started for me when I joined Adobo Velo last Summer. I could not have fathomed that I could finish 100 miles and be able to stand up afterwards. With all the training rides on weekends and weekdays, I was well prepared and well trained. Thanks Adobo Velo for preparing me for this gruelling ride. I think I speak for Filbert in by saying if it were not for Adobo, this ride would have been impossible.

The prospect of rain scared off a few potential riders. Those who committed to the ride, rain or shine, were rewarded with sunshine, 65 degrees temp, no clouds in the sky. Perfect riding weather.

The Adobos that made it to the ride, Ike, El, Filbert, Deo, Ryan, Victor, Louis, Lito were full of comraderie. The Astigs would push the pace 45+mph and us slow guys (Filbert & I) will try to keep up. Deo and Louis would stay back to push us along. Always knowing that everyone regroups at the SAG stops. The first 16 mile climb, with headwinds of 15-20mph , was the toughest for me since I have not trained on hill, yet. I just said to myself, "Take it easy, there will be lots of downhills later, 84 miles to go."

On one long particular stretch of rolling hills, after the 25 mile SAG, I can attest to you that Deo indeed broke a shifter cable as was mentioned in previous blogs. He stayed on his biggest gear the whole way pulling both Filbert and I , maxing at 42MPH! I felt like a PRO! Luckily there were mechanics to fix Deo's cable and Ryan's sew-ups at the 55 mile SAG. People kept coming up to us saying "I like Adobo!" There were a few Filipinas inquiring about our group. We felt so proud.

We met up with the InCycle Group at the 55 mile SAG. Ike hooked up with his old riding buddy, Dr. Demi Hechevara from the Philippines. Demi is one of the leaders of InCycle. He is now a cardiologist in Glendale .They had 2 tandem teams pulling for them. When we grouped together, Adobo + InCycle, we had a 30+ peloton and cruised at 27 MPH. Unfortunately, with a very large groups means lots of flats. The Adobo group then decided to let Filbert & I go ahead, with Louis Rivera leading the paceline. We had a 3 man breakaway. Hehe...

The rest of the group caught up with the 3 man breakaway at the 68 mile mark. This is where my family was waiting close to our house in La Quinta. Waving a sign with "Pinoy Power, Adobo Velo" . My wife and kids, mother and father-in-law, were there to cheer us on. We were also able to unload the extra layers of clothes from the chilly morning start. Oranges, bananas, juice, gatorade were available. Filbert really needed to refuel because his bottle cages had broke and he lost both bottles! It was a timely refueling stop.

At the 75 mile SAG, Deo, Louis, Ryan, Filbert and I left the InCycle, because on another flat in their group. Deo led a great pull as we passed other groups of riders.

Finally at the 90 mile SAG, the rest of the group joined together. We cruised and finished the last 4 miles as one group. My total saddle time was 6:04. This was close to my 6:00 goal. Total ride time, including pit stops was 9 hours! Ouch!

At home, warm Pilipino food was waiting for us. Kare-kare, BBQ, rice, salad, champagne toast. We even had a cake for El's birthday. His birthday was the previous day, 2/13. Family and friends retelling our day's cycling adventure.

Next day, Ike and I did a 17 mile loop with some hills to stretch our legs. Boy did that feel good!

It was really a pleasure doing my first century ride with Adobo Velo. It was also a first century for Filbert and Ike.

We will do it again next year. This time with more Adobos, rain or shine. The Adobo Spirit reigns

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

LAVRA Cup TT and Omnium (Series 1) Post-Race Report

ADT Event Center's First series of Omnium of the year started well. Time trials were held in the morning and an Omnium later in the afternoon. This series consists of 5 TTs and Omniums that is scheduled over the next few months. To be eligible for the LAVRA Cup, the rider must participate in all the same TTs and /or Omniums. So this means, everyone who competed last Saturday has the chance to win the Cup. This also turned out to be an important event if you are aiming for the Cup, as the overall winner will receive a trophy and a jersey. Example: Wilson raced the Cat1/2/3 Omnium and I raced the flying 200M, 500M time trials, and Master's 40+ Omnium. So in a way, we are stuck with those races but can still participate in all other races. So far so good! All other stronger riders who did not show up and starts competing later means they are not in contention for the Cup. So let's hope that we can be there for the whole series.

That day started really early preparing for the TTs. Unloading all your gear, prepping-up to get on the track, registration, hoping to get someone pin your race number properly, and your warm-ups. Found out I was the first off the line to do the Flying 200M TT, with another 19 trackies after me. So far, preparing up to that moment was just as planned. The sprint itself felt fine and had lots of time resting for the 500M TT. I didn't have any problems changing to a different wheelset and gear ratio as I was the 5th person off the gate. This event is not my specialty but I can get used to it. My gear turned out to be lighter than I expected but still managed a decent result. This 2-lap sprint off the gate felt endless as I was pushing the bike hard all the way to the finish. After cooling down, I immediately prepared to go home for some decent meal and much needed rest. I tell you, I felt refreshed after I returned for the Omnium! Just the kind of break I needed! Here's a nice pic of the Velodrome with an ADOBO Velo in the mix.

The afternoon Omnium was another hectic beginning as the dugout was packed and no where to mark your spot. My area in the morning was taken when I returned and I ended up with someone else's spot. I guess it was a domino effect. Wilson was there ready to race and was scheduled for Cat1/2/3 Omnium with 4 races: a 70-lap Points Race, 20-lap Tempo Race, Miss N'Out, and lastly a 20-lap Scratch Race. I was scheduled for Master's 40+ Omnium with 3 races, Miss N'Out, a 15-lap Scratch Race and lastly a 30-lap Points Race. Ayvel, Louie, Rosalie, Oscar, and Gil with his family were there for the festivities. Our races were hard and brutal that it didn't seem we had any decent finishes. Wilson earned points from his 2 races and used all his strength for a tight finish in the last race. It was about the same for my races also. As it turned out, we gave some decent competition and we had some respectable overall finishes. Hopefully you had the chance to see the pictures taken by Rosalie and Louie which are now posted in our picasaweb album. Here's another nice pic! Wilson Blas racing against Justin Williams of Rock Racing during the Points Race.

By the way, the results were just posted and you can see them at ADT's website. Here's some details: Wilson: 4th in the Scratch Race and 6th in the Miss N'Out. Arden: 6th in the Miss N'Out, 5th in the Scratch Race, and 4th in the Points Race. You will be amazed once you see them on-line. Check them out! I myself was amazed… Now it's just a matter of training constantly and compete in the other events. Remember, we have to be there at all other LAVRA Cup events! Here's the results. Many thanks for the members who were there for the moral support and your posts of appreciation!