Thursday, 15 September 2016

Day 20: Battle Mountain NV

We decided not to run in the morning, so everybody could get the much needed rest.
Yes, Team Cygnus did post that on their blog last night, the ["Uncle Montys" - Ed...].  A mostly good set of runs in the morning, with late arrivals Peter Borenstadt and Greg Thomas running a DF velomobile down the qualifying course.  Both of them have previous here, having run the ex-Team Trisled trike Completely Overzealous last year (Greg has also run the Varna Mephisto in the past).  As far as I can tell all winds were legal, though Sarah Piercy was slower starting from 1000m out than she had been over the full 2.5 miles earlier.  Could just have been because it was bloody freezing, mind.
Liverpool's PSOs had the bricks in place but Greg arrived before they cold have the wheels off...
Then operations shifted out to what used to be the "gravel" depot and now isn't, because the mine producing the gravel-resembling Stuffs has just closed down and the last of the huge pile that has dominated the long course start since the event began in 2000 has gone.  I spent far longer chatting to people up there in between course sweeps than actually paying attention to what was happening on the road but here is Liverpool's Yasmin Tredell some time before her run, deep in discussion tomfoolery with some Scouse Oaves:
After which she went down the road and set a new BRITISH Ladies record of 67.58 mph.  The best previous speed we could find was Claire King's 39-odd at Bentwaters in 2008.  I am told that she is primarily a rower who was advised to take up cycling after a back injury saw her unable to go to Rio, that after this she'll be back in training for Tokyo 2020 and that she can generate almost as much power as team-mate Ken Buckley.

Starters George and Carole Leone had to read the riot act to the Annecy gang after they took way too long to get Altaïr 5 going, while Ryohei Komori in Super Ketta Machine 162 had to abort after a Several of falls at launch.  However someone higher up the food chain allowed an extra heat to be squeezed in and both riders made clean runs.  However, more mechanical woes for Andrew Sourk's TRIage were compounded by his car battery running out of voles.  A set of jump leads were procured from someone's well-stocked toolbox and electricity applied from the Mexican kids' gert big Mercedes bus.  Hurrah for preparedness!

If you're wondering about Super Ketta Machine 161, it was involved in a race staged for a Japanese TV show against Team Cygnus earlier this year.  Who got an all-expenses paid trip to the Land of the Rising Sun out of it, the terrible gits.  By current standards it looked a bit old-skool so the team behind it built a brand new and exquisitely finished state of the art camera bike in a couple of months.
The impossibly shiny Super Ketta Machine 162 shortly before Komori-san spoiled the paintwork
If you're wondering about Super Ketta Machines 1 through 160, I'm afraid I cannot help you.

Calvin Moes is riding Eta Prime, with the same shape as the world record holder but different innards, for the University of Toronto team.  He has done some sums.  25% more power required to reach his 80 mph goal.  He thinks 10% is on.  Since he has earlier told us that Todd's limited production hand made Conti GP4000 tyres are worth 4 km/h on their own, a plot is hatched to divert Aerovelo's attention while others nick Eta's wheels.  I do not know how successful it was, but Calvin was quicker in the evening than of late, while Todd was slower.
Calvin showing that crime pays1

Some bloke turned up to spectate for a bit before disappearing elsewhere.  My nephew raced here a few times, he said.  O RLY?  Yes, his name's Sam...  Meanwhile, Mark Mueller has organised a "Bike Party" around the streets of Battle Mountain.  Here is his steed:
See your bike?  That's a girl's bike, that is!
Come the afternoon, the very reasonable observation by my man Jan-Marcel that it was bloody silly to have an unused slot in one of the evening heats sees Team Cygnus running after all, in spite of not meeting the letter of the qualification rules.  He launched first time and kept the chain where it should be, but was a little disappointed with 73.84 mph.  Moreover his was one of two (out of twelve) runs that had an illegally high wind speed chiz, the other being Super Ketta Machine 162.  Speeds were mostly high, though BRITAIN's Ken Buckley backed off because of a disturbing smell, as of something rubbing something else wot it should not have been.  Sensible, really, as if one of the somethings is a tyre it can end in tears before bedtime for the rider and no bedtime at all for the PSOs assigned to the bike's care and feeding.

Florian Kowalik increased his own Junior record to 63.86 mph, while Yasmin did a 69.94 mph to edge her national record out further.  This is getting dangerously close to "Almost 70 mph" hat territory, though as far as I know Western Half-Devil Monster Face van Schaik still has that one in his possession.  Speeds were high.  Andrea bettered his Italian national record with a 76.13, Auré's 77.59 was 0.002 seconds slower than his personal best (which I assume is also a French national record) and Gareth was very close to his own muti-track mark at 72.32.  Jan Bos is having a much better time of it than on his last visit and did 77.06 and Calvin hit 74 and some change.  Todd's 86.27 was almost a letdown, which shows how far the goalposts have shifted in the last twelve months.

Whileall this was happening we were treated to the sight of the almost-full moon in a storm climb above the mountains which, I'm sure you'll agree, is much more wik than silly old bicycles.

  1. Lie


  1. Don't look much like or speak like Scousers to me. Yasmin lives in Henley.

    1. It's all young Pat's fault for coming here on the recce in 2014 and sounding like a Scouser from off of the telly. As for Henley, that ["Uncle Monty" - Ed.] Boris Johnson was MP for Henley, so The Mgt should have had the place razed to the ground and the earth ploughed with salt long before Yasmin ever set foot in the place.

      Or something.