Reason #4

So last week I talked about the race I was doing this weekend. And if, my friends, you recall there were 4 reasons why this was going to be a very very interesting proposition.

Lets recap.

1. Its a discipline I am not good at (XC, cross country single track)

2. There will be some very good XC racers there.

3. The length is too short for what I have been training all summer to do (about 1 hour versus 10 hours)

4. Humm. It was just a tease.

Well here is reason #4.


Any ideas? Well how about this?


That looks suspiciously like a bike packed in a box. Wonder what that’s all about. Well… you go all built up.


Hey that looks amazingly like a mountain bike. What kind? (Glad you asked Yeti!) Here is the face plate.


Wait a minute…Isn’t that the Salsa bikes symbol on the front of the bike? As a mater of fact it is. And whats more the whole bike is in fact a 2013 Salsa El Mariachi Ti, medium. See…


It’s an interesting time of the year: Model year clearance! The new 2014 bikes are due into shops at the end of the month and the old bikes? They gotta go. I managed to find a brand new 2013 El Mariachi Ti on discount. And I made it mine! (His name is Aistear Casta, bonus points for those who can figure out what his name means.)

I got him in the mail on Saturday.

You know the whole thing about not changing anything on a set-up the week before a race? Well that’s good advice. I mean you don’t want things like the bar grips to be different when you get to that race. The bike would just feel weird and could lead to major complications when racing. And you really want to feel comfortable when you are racing in something that isn’t comfortable to begin with, right?

BUT I found a loophole in that argument. I decided to change the whole entire set-up! This weekend I am going to be racing on a totally new bike. Not only that, but its a 29’er versus the 26″ bike I have been riding, well since I started mountain biking. That means it has bigger tires and a much longer wheel base. It has hydraulic disk brakes versus my old rim (back) and mechanical disk (front) brakes. It has tubeless tires versus the old school tube tires. In short it feels totally different. (All of those differences have good and bad points.)

I did figure it would be a good idea to get some time on the bike before the race (remember its good to live dangerously, but not stupidly!) so yesterday I took him out on the single track behind my office (the one the race will be on). Downloaded the track onto my computer. Low and behold, the 3 fastest laps I have ever recorded on those trails. (According to STRAVA I leapfrogged the local bike shop owner on those trails. I am now second, out of 8. I will also say, for full disclosure, that I got some advice on riding single track that made a couple of things click in my brain. But the bike is fantastic.)

Game on.

Picture of the Day


“Comfort Zone” (BTW. That’s Worm. He is a 26″ Basso Ti Superlite, medium. Terrific bike with great components. He kept me safe in Leadville. He is looking for a new human. I have to pay for Aistear. Let me know if you are interested.)


4 thoughts on “Reason #4

  1. Thank you. And yes, maybe I am impatient, but I’m old, and that light in the tunnel seems to be getting brighter. I think you’ll have a great time on the 29r. I was hooked immediately when I demo’d my Cannondale Flash(carbon). Thought there was no finer bike. Then that darn’d WBR FSR Stumpy arrived with the Carbon Wheels and…you know the rest.
    Your stories and your success at Leadville after 2yrs (can that be right) of MTB’g have me now looking at racing. God knows I have a chance since my ‘age class’ is probably a very small group. Any interest in 24hrs of Old Pueblo next year?
    I’ll know I’m done for if I ask for a ‘coach’ for Christmas.

    May be time to put my Turner5 spot on the block. Ssssh! This is going to be hard.

  2. Pingback: Learning | A Year of Living...humm...dangerous?

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