Friday, August 31, 2007
There are some news agencies speculating that Johan Bruyneel could lead Team Astana for 2008 and beyond. The Belgian will end his duties at the end the year when Discovery Channel ceases as a team, while at Astana there have been rumours of Team Manager Marc Biver leaving. A communication regarding the Swiss is expected September 5.
Bruyneel could bring with him many Discovery riders, such as Tour de France winner Alberto Contador and Yaroslav Popovych. Further comments from Bruyneel and Astana are expected.
Playing for England is always a special experience and none more so than running out onto the pitch at Wembley. Unfortunately, the result wasn’t the one we wanted, but I felt we played fairly well despite losing to Germany.
I managed to play the full 90 minutes which was great as it gets me that much closer to full match fitness and hopefully I can play more of a part in the upcoming Galaxy games.
I’m really looking forward to playing in my first cup final in the US against Pachuca on Wednesday. Although I was unable to play against them in the previous Super Liga cup game, we won 2-1, so I’m hoping to play tonight and help the team get another win. They are one of the top sides in Mexico so we know this will be tough game, but one we are all looking forward to.
I’ll let you know how the game goes.
Thursday, August 30, 2007
For more information please visit http://www.tpmassageball.com
There will be over 20 hours of live video coverage available right here on www.triathlon.org next week, so make sure to get a comfortable seat if you cannot make the trip to Hamburg. Live coverage will begin with the pre race press conference on Thursday August 30. Next we move onto live coverage of the Junior and U23 races on Friday August 31. The elite women take centre stage on Saturday September 1st.
There will be over 25 cameras, helicopters and motorbikes covering the elite races.
On Sunday September 2nd, it's the age groupers turn to take centre stage alongside the elite men, and the ITU media team will begin live coverage at 7.15 am local time, from the age group world championships. Be sure to wave to the cameras as you cross the finish line, to say hello to your family and friends at home. They'll probably already know your time before you do, as we will have live timing and results for the age group race available live on the internet.
Triathlon.org will feature a number of services for athletes, media and fans including:
- Over 20 hours of live video coverage from all races
- Full live timing and results of all races, including the age group world championships
- Uniquely designed system where all age-group athletes can watch their race finish on demand (Age group athletes will be alerted via email when this service is available so make sure to give your updated contact details to the registration staff on site) - Live video coverage of the age group finish area so your friends and family can watch you cross the finish line live
- Exclusive behind the scenes video features of all the action from Hamburg, including the parade of nations
- Race stories and photo galleries from all events
- Website dedicated to the world championships
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Functionally Innovative Training (FIT Multisports) is the distinctive leaderin the Multisport Training and Athlete Management industry. They are designed to allow anyone from the professional athlete to the beginning age grouper the ability to easily take advantage of their premier coaching, training, performance testing and athlete management services. Professional athletes such as Bjorn Andersson, Clas Bjorling, Jonas Colting, Chris McDonald and Marilyn MacDonald and Bryan Rhodes utilize FIT Multisport's services management and or coaching services.
Jason Goldberg is Director of Operations for FIT Multisports and has
Degrees from SUNY Cortland and Kean University where he studied Exercise Science, Human Movement and Sport and Recreation Management. He has over 10 years of multisport coaching experience including training and racing with power meters for the past 8 years. FIT Multisports is also one of a handful of Ergomo Coaching Centers in the United States.
FIT Multisport's programs are based on cutting edge science and research as well as practical applications, never opinion. To ensure that they can engineer human performance, they measure an athlete's gases, heart rate, blood lactate and power output to design a training program based on their unique physiology and biomechanical strengths and weaknesses. They run their laboratory services to train,test and optimize each athletes' performance that they work with. They video tape their swim stroke, cycling style and position, and running stride. Everything that goes into and comes out of the athlete gets tested, taped, measured, plotted, evaluated. They listens to what each athlete says,listen to their bodies, watch what they do. They are the consummate athletic trainers, testers, tacticians and coaches. FIT Multisports takes pride in these cutting edge training methodologies and they are committed to providing athletes with the ultimate training and management experience.
For more information please visit http://www.fitmultisports.org
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
The race is open to individuals and teams with a limit of 200 riders. Bikers start in the historic north shore town of Paia and wind their way upcountry through sugar cane and pineapple fields past the Paniolo town of Makawao and into the scenic pasturelands of Olinda. Ride along rolling fields and through Eucalyptus groves in route to pine forests at the 6,500' tree line. Beyond the tree line is another 11 quad burning miles as the road traverses up the side of the dormant volcano Haleakala. A half mile from the summit you can see the finish line as the grade now steepens to 19%!
2007 "Cycle to the Sun" Top 5 Overall Individual Results
2 CHRIS LIETO
3 WILLIAM INNES
4 SCOTT FRAKE
5 CRAIG HOFER
I really don’t know how to explain it…I really don’t. Ironman is just this weird sport with a bunch of crazy people and this mysterious allure. Everyone does it for their own reason and everyone has their own journey. You can try to explain to people why you do it or why its important to you but at the end of the day its just this feeling that you are on your own with. And its worth it.
I didn’t think I was going to race. I signed up last year and it sounded like a good idea at the time. (I’m sure Ironman makes a lot of money from all of the people who like the idea of it but never actually show up). I had a terrible race earlier this year at Honu and I just wasn’t in to training and racing. I have fallen in love with cycling so I have been doing a lot of that. But swimming and running….its been a long time. I gave up on running a while back when I realized how much pain my body was in. I’d go out on a run and realize I was just hurting. It wasn’t fun anymore and it was a big bummer. I used to really love to run. That was my thing. But having not run more than a couple miles at a time over the last few months I really didn’t think I could pull this race off. I mean you can’t really fake your way through a marathon.
I had a really hard time with deciding whether to race or not. I drove my friends and family nuts every day. And more than anything I drove myself nuts. I had decided not to go, not to race, and just put this whole Ironman thing to rest. But a few days before the race I had lunch with a good friend who talked me in to it. He believed in me and made it seem like the race would be a walk in the park. And he was actually right. Thanks Tom.
I got to Kentucky on Wednesday night and Thursday morning headed straight to registration. I sat in line behind a long line of slender men who all looked and dressed the same and most of whom had Ironman tattoos on their calves. They were all chatting away with one another and talking about the course and whether we would be allowed to wear wetsuits. The water temperature was 87 degrees - well over the race limit for wetsuits. You could feel everyone’s nervous energy fill the room. And then the guy behind me says…”I’m so glad we don’t have to wear wetsuits in this race.” It made me smile. He started asking me about the bike course and I really had no clue as I had tuned this race out a while ago and really didn’t look in to the race details. He asked me if I was trying to qualify for Kona and I said, “No…not going to happen”. He said, “You never know”. Well yah…I know. We went through the registration hoopla, weighed in, signed our lives away and got the t-shirt. As we walked out my new friend asked me my race number. “566” I said. And you? “5” he said. I just rolled my eyes and smiled. Pretty funny he was asking me about the course.
The days leading up to the race were really fun. Kentucky is beautiful and everyone is so nice. Although I really don’t like being called Mam. And most importantly, the food in Kentucky rocks! You should have seen my face light up when I saw the menu at Five Star Tavern – two full pages of steak options. And I’m not even going to begin telling you how good the cornbread was. I might go back to Kentucky just to eat the cornbread.
The day before an Ironman is usually the worst. You turn all of your gear and bike in and hope you got it right and then you just wait. I was actually really calm and having a great time people watching. I think the fact that I didn’t have months and months of serious training invested in this experience made things a lot easier on me. I really didn’t know what was going to happen but I was tired of worrying about it. I’ve done a few Ironman races but this was the first with no real training…it was a new challenge.
I woke up at 4:30am race morning and tried to eat and get myself together. I was out the door by 5:00 and my mom drove her husband and I to the starting area. (He was racing too which is why I got myself in to this whole situation in the first place). I checked on my bike, said goodbye and headed to the swim start. We had to walk about a mile to get to the new swim start. They changed the course at the last minute because of river currents. As soon as we arrived to the swim start, we got in a line that was forming off of the dock. The swim would be a time-trial start and we would jump in the river one by one. I lined up next to a couple from Louisville and right before the race started they said “Don’t mind the catfish even though they are rather large and look out for the water snakes because they bite”. Just what I wanted to hear. Time flew by and then next thing you knew I was in the water. The water really was 87 degrees so not wetsuit….it was like swimming in a bath. The sun coming up over the river was this really beautiful bright pink. As I swam away I just tried to not think about how sick the bacteria ridden water was going to make me. I don’t know how I managed to swim 2.4 miles but somehow it happened.
I was so happy to get on my bike. I love riding and I couldn’t wait to see more of Kentucky. It was the most beautiful….I mean crazy beautiful…course that I have even been on. It was green and lush and every few miles horses and cornfields lined the way. You get out there and part of you wants to laugh at all of the people who have so much gear strapped to their bikes that they are practically falling over…and then the other part of you gets a little choked up thinking about what you are actually doing.
The support was wonderful. So many locals were out cheering us on and it really makes it so fun. When we rode through the town of La Grange it felt like we were riding in a parade. Hundreds of people lined the streets screaming and cheering us on. I felt great on the entire ride. I was nervous in the beginning about pacing myself and didn’t want to ride too hard. I think it’s probably been 4 or so years since I have ridden over 100 miles. I have been riding a lot but that was definitely a lot longer than my body was used to. But I nailed my nutrition, went extra slow and realized at mile 70 that I had a ton of energy so I started to ride hard and have fun. I was passing most people at that point. You could tell that a lot of people were struggling. I wish I had ridden hard the whole time but I knew if I at all was thinking about doing this whole crazy thing that I needed to pace myself.
So here we go. I get off the bike and I really didn’t know what I was going to do. I sat in transition for a while to think it over. I knew because of my nagging hamstring running a marathon was out of the question. Not to mention I didn’t put in any long runs at any point in my training. So I’d have to walk. Can you actually walk a marathon…..and how long does that take? I sat in the transition tent, soaked my feet in ice, and then just decided go for it. I laced my shoes up and I was off. I got on the run course and actually started running. I was amazed at how great my legs felt. And I had a ton of energy. It was really weird. I saw my mom on the course and I think she was in shock that I had decided to start the run. She has watched every one of my Ironman races but I’ve never seen her as excited as she looked out on the course that day. My run didn’t last long but I kept moving. I never stopped and I had the best time. In fact, one of the best times of my life.
At mile 20 they had a huge billboard with electronic messages for athletes. I glanced up to read what people had written and was surprised to see a message written to me. “Have a great race P. Dunn. I’ll see you.” My new friend #5 had left me a message. It gave me an extra burst of energy. Thank you Alex. As I approached mile 25 I was literally in shock. I can’t believe I actually just did this thing. I literally wasn’t going to race a week ago and here I was about to finish an Ironman. As I rounded the last corner and saw the finish line I couldn’t help but smile. I actually almost started to cry but there were so many people lining the streets so I decided to pull it together. I crossed the line and felt great. I mean really great. I have done a few Ironmans but this was hands down the best race ever. I guess I am kind of biased being in the field of sport psychology but just goes to show you how mental sport is. You really can do anything you put your mind to. Anything.
Monday, August 27, 2007
By: Floyd Landis
Well, that was fun. No, seriously it was a blast.
Considering the Leadville Trail 100 is almost all over 10,000 feet of elevation, climbs somewhere in the vicinity of 15,000 feet of vertical and that I laid it down in massive, 35mph wash-out on an early downhill, I’d say it was a great experience. One I look forward to making an annual excursion.
I’d like to take some time for a few thank you’s. Starting with a big thanks to the fine people at Smith & Nephew who have been extremely supportive through rehabilitation and training with my Birmingham Hip. We made the right choice, used the best technology and now are seeing the results with my BHR.
Next, a very special thanks to Ken Chlouber and Merillee O’Neal, who have built the Leadville race into one of the most impressive and challenging one-day races anywhere in the world. Getting the invite to come to Leadville, despite all the other distractions, shows you what great people they are.
Two final thank you’s; A big, big bravo to the support staff, volunteers and crew people. The sight of some fig newtons and Gatorade has never been made more appealing than by these “saints” of the trail.
Lastly, to all the other competitors who buzzed off the line at about 6:30am not far from the highest Main St. in the country. It was an impressive sound hearing all of us clicking into our pedals, shifting gears and revving up our knobby tires. But what was more impressive was at the end of the day, watching rider after rider roll up into town and cross the finish line, each of us just as tired, hungry, happy and proud as the next. We all rode the same course, the same trails and the same mountain and it was awesome.
While Ironman athletes took to the streets of Lousiville, Kentucky, Penticton, Canada and Jeju, South Korea, some of the World’s top speedsters headed to the Windy City for the Accenture Chicago Triathlon – the largest multisport event on the planet.
The list of pros at the start line in Chicago’s Monroe Harbor was perhaps the deepest and most versatile of any triathlon this season. In the women’s race, the top woman in all three major distances (Olympic, 70.3, Ironman) were all on hand in the form of Emma Snowsill, Samantha McGlone and Michellie Jones. After just under two hours of racing, Snowsill proved to be too quick for the long-course girls.
The Aussie ITU-sensation led a very elite group out of the water, which included Americans Becky Lavelle and Rebeccah Wassner and Britain’s Julie Dibens. Once the top women made their way onto the flat and fast bike course, Dibens took charge and Lavelle gave chase. The Brit stormed down the Chicago Lakefront at over 25 mph and hit T2 with about half-a-minute on Lavelle and an almost two-minute advantage over the fleet-footed Snowsill.
As soon as Snowsill found her stride it became clear that the rest of the women didn’t stand a chance. The queen of the Lifetime Fitness Triathlon Series destroyed the field with a 35:10 10km run (faster than all but 10 men), to win in 1:59:45. Lavelle ran past Dibens for third, with reigning Ironman 70.3 World Champion Samantha McGlone running her way to fourth, just one second behind Dibens. Ironman World Champ Michellie Jones was ninth (2:06:05).
If Snowsill is the queen of the Lifetime Fitness Series (Minneapolis, New York, Chicago, L.A, Dallas), then her countryman, Greg Bennett is king. He’s already won in Minneapolis and New York this season and at Chicago, he reminded the rest of the top pros that he’s the fastest runner in the sport.
Aussie Craig Walton, considered by most to be triathlon’s best swimmer, was actually beaten out of Lake Michigan by Brazil’s Paulo Miyashiro. However, the Aussie was mere seconds back and quickly made up the difference by posting the fastest bike split of the day (54:42). Only Bennett and American bike-phenom David Thompson were able to keep pace, but Thompson’s swim-deficit would force him to settle for third.
Walton entered T2 with a lead of just over 90 seconds, but he needed a little more than that to hold off the hard-charging Bennett. As Snowsill did in the women’s race, Bennett pieced together a ridiculous 10km run (31:58) and made winning look easy. Bennett stopped the clock in 1:48:48, with Walton 47 seconds back. Thompson, one of the sport’s best bike-run specialists, showed he’s improved his swim a bit (21:03 in the water) and the extra time spent in the pool helped him to a third place finish.
Accenture Chicago Triathlon
August 26, 2007
1.5-k sw, 40-k ru, 10-k ru
1. Emma Snowsill (AUS) 1:59:45
2. Becky Lavelle (USA) 2:01:24
3. Julie Dibens (GBR) 2:01:47
4. Samantha McGlone (CAN) 2:01:48
5. Mirinda Carfrae (USA) 2:04:07
1. Greg Bennett (AUS) 1:48:48
2. Craig Walton (AUS) 1:49:35
3. David Thompson (USA) 1:51:07
4. Paul Matthews (AUS) 1:51:33
5. Paulo Miyashiro (BRA) 1:52:06
Saturday, August 25, 2007
This will be Paige's fourth Ironman. She has competed At IMLP, IMC and IMAZ. Recovox wants to wish her the best of luck.....Go # 566!!!
Friday, August 24, 2007
We’re heading toward the end of summer and that means one thing – racing, and a lot of it. This Sunday, August 26, will feature three major North American events: The inaugural Ironman Louisville, Ironman Canada and the sports largest event, the Chicago Triathlon.
Ironman Kentucky and Canada will offer long-coursers one last chance to qualify for the 2007 Ford Ironman World Championship, while Chicago will showcase some of the world’s fastest short-course triathletes.
We won’t see too many of the top ITU athletes in the Windy City, as many of them are preparing for next weekend’s World Championship, in Hamburg, Germany. That being said, expect some fast times on the super-flat lakefront course.
The age-groupers will get an early start, which will give them a chance to watch the pros at 11 am. The men’s favorite is American Matty Reed, but he’ll get his fair share of competition from the likes of super-swimmers Brian Fleschman and Craig Walton, as well as Brian Lavelle and former duathlon World Champ Leon Griffin.
The pro women’s start list is even more impressive. Aussie Emma Snowsill has to be the favorite, but it will by no means be a walk in Grant Park for her. American Dede Griesbauer is a powerful biker, who has a good chance of leading the women into T2, but she’ll be challenged by Leanda Cave, Mirinda Carfrae, Becky Lavelle, Julie Dibens, Pip Taylor and Rebeccah Wassner.
A mere six-hour drive from Chicago you’ll find Louisville, Kentucky – home of Ironman’s newest event. The course is sure to be one of the more interesting 140.6-milers out there, starting off with a hot tub-like dip in the 85-degree waters of the Ohio River. Course officials modified the swim this morning, due to heavy upriver rain. Athletes will now be shielded from much of the heavy current.
The swim is likely to be the coolest part of the day for the athletes, as August in Kentucky usually means triple-digit temps. The mercury is set to hit 100 today and tomorrow, before “cooling” off into the low-90’s for Saturday and Sunday.
The bike course will feature rolling hills, similar to those found at Ironman Wisconsin, before things flatten out for the marathon through the city that Muhammad Ali, Louisville Slugger and Jim Beam built.
The finish line is sure to be one of the most spectacular in all of Ironman, with athletes running down 4th Street Live – one of Lousiville’s most popular hangouts.
While many of the top Ironman pros have finished their Kona prep races, a few have penciled in Lousiville as a key race. Czech Petr Vabrousek figures to be the favorite, but expect Eagleman champ TJ Tollakson to charge hard on the bike. Also in the mix on the men’s side will be Alex Taubert, Craig McKenzie, Chris McDonald, Andreas Neidreig and Chris Hauth. As for the women, expect a showdown between American Heather Gollnick and German Nina Craft, who is racing in her first full season since a doping suspension.
Those heading North, to Ironman Canada, will be treated to much milder mercury. Temps are expected to be in the mid-70’s in Penticton, which will be a big help for athletes trying to conquer the grueling bike course.
It’s hard to find a clear-cut favorite in the deep men’s field at Canada. 2005 Ironman Wisconsin champ, Andriy Yasterbov, can close with one of the fastest marathons in the sport, but he’ll have to chase bike powerhouses Gordo Byrn, Kieran Doe and Wolfgang Guembel. German Jan Sibbersen, Ironman’s best swimmer, will have a chance if he can hang on to his early advantage.
The women’s race features two of Ironman’s most celebrated women: Heather Fuhr and Lisa Bentley. For Bentley, it’s only her second race of the season, due to an early-summer injury. Making things difficult for the two veterans will be youngster Sara Gross, as well as Linda Gallo and Andrea Fisher – two of the sport’s best swimmers.
Thursday, August 23, 2007
Floyd Landis will be racing at the Shenandoah Mountain 100, the finale in the National Ultra Endurance (NUE) Series to be held on Labor Day weekend near Harrisonburg, Virginia, in the George Washington National Forest.
"I am honored to be invited to be part of the Shenandoah Mountain 100 event. I look forward to racing on the challenging course they have put together since it includes the kind technical trail riding that first got me hooked on mountain bike racing," said 2006 Tour de France Champion Landis, who started his career growing up and racing his mountain bike throughout the mid-Atlantic.
While waiting to learn the outcome of his May anti-doping arbitration hearing that followed a positive doping test for testosterone in Stage 17 of the 2006 Tour de France, Landis has kept himself busy by returning to his roots and racing his mountain bike. Just a few weeks ago, he finished second at the Leadville 100, and earlier this summer, he took part in the Teva Games in Colorado.
Landis accepted an invitation to race the Shenandoah Mountain 100 offered to him by Mid Atlantic Off Road Enthusiast (MORE) member Scott Scudamore, who served as MC at a Floyd Fairness Fund event held in Northern Virginia in January. At the time, he deferred committing and joked instead, "I'd like to come, but I don't have to race if it's raining, right?"
"I'm pretty stoked that Floyd Landis has decided to return to his mountain biking roots and show up for the SM100. I've been dogging him for close to a year," said Promoter Chris Scott.
"If he's really on his game, he could beat the course record set by Jeremiah Bishop last year of 7 hours, 15 minutes," said Scott.
Tuesday, August 21, 2007
By: Jason Sumner
In triathlon's short history, the seven years between 1984 and 1990 are multisport's version of the industrial revolution. It was then that the sport and its associated gear transformed from three separate activities into a unified pursuit with its own specialized equipment.
Twenty-five years later, three key leaders of this revolution remain devoted to the sport. Steve Hed still builds top-flight aero wheels and bars, Quintana Roo founder Dan Empfield is now publisher of Slowtwitch.com, and Emilio De Soto continues to run his successful tri-specific apparel company.
Recently IT.com talked to all three of these influential men to find out what put their innovative wheels in motion. In part three of the three-part series Emilio De Soto talks about year one in business and recalls sleeping in his warehouse.
InsideTri.com: Walk us through the timeline during the early days of De Soto Sports.
Emilio De Soto: If you count on two hands, we might be considered one of first companies. There were some before us taking a crack at triathlon apparel. But when I started my company what I was noticing is that these companies were calling themselves tri clothing companies, but all they were doing is making swimming, cycling and running apparel.
We got into the business after looking at what a company called Forté was doing in early 1980s. They invented what is now known as the tri short - a bike short with some kind of elastic waist that had a pad that wasn't as big as a cycling pad, so that you could swim, bike and run in it.
When I started De Soto in 1990, if you look at photos, people were racing in Speedos with these skimpy little tops. I wasn't a fan of that look. So instead of swim, bike and run clothing, we started making triathlon racing and training clothing. That was the simplicity behind the start of the business.
IT.com: Talk about those early days. You ran a pretty lean operation.
Emilio De Soto: In the beginning we shared a building in Santa Ana, California with Quintana Roo. [QR founder] Dan Empfield was one of my company's first investors, which meant free warehouse space for De Soto. That meant a shelving unit that was not only my warehouse space, but also occasionally my bed.
IT.com: So you were pretty much a company of one?
Emilio De Soto: Well there were people to answer phones, but most of those calls eventually just got passed on to me. So yeah, it was just me for the first nine months. The QR people helped with shipping, but order processing and all that was done by me.
IT.com: How did you handle manufacturing in those early days?
Emilio De Soto: When we first started in Santa Ana, I was designing garments and cutting fabric, then taking it to a couple sewing contractors nearby. Today, all of it is either done in-house or by nearby contractors. We are fully made in the USA except our wetsuits and backpacks. We also do custom wetsuits, alterations and repairs. We repair more wetsuits from other companies than our own, and we make good money doing that.
IT.com: How did you handle sales in the formative years?
Emilio De Soto: We took the approach to go out and sell right to consumer at races. My first summer I was working during the week, then going to races on the weekends and after I did my race, I was popping open the trunk of my Honda CRX and selling product out of the back.
IT.com: What has made De Soto Sports so successful?
Emilio De Soto: First off, Forté invented the tri suit and short. He was making them in the early '80s. But they didn't catch on so you were still seeing people compete in everything from swim shorts to run shorts. What I did was take his initial concepts and refine them to a point where people would buy them over other options.
His tri short had a one-piece pad, but it was made of real leather, not synthetics. So you had to rub chamois butter on it after washing or it got crusty. I looked at the concept and said he's close, but it's 1990 not 1983. We have synthetic fabrics that will be comfortable and stretch in every direction of the short.
IT.com: How is your product line evolving today?
Emilio De Soto: We continue to evolve in simple ways. I go downstairs and tweak sewing machines to create stitches that have never existed before. I design my own fabrics for the garments we use. We are no longer just a clothing company. We are a sewing machine alteration company that makes new stitches, and we make our own fabrics.
IT.com: De Soto is one of the few companies that focus on two-piece wetsuits. Why?
Emilio De Soto: That was something Dan [Empfield] and I kind of came up with together. We both had ideas. His was that a two-piece was the only way to make a wetsuit without a zipper. I thought that with or without zipper, it would allow your upper body to move more freely from your lower body and be a lot more comfortable doing so.
On top of that, we both agreed that most companies put floatation in the torso. But we believed the floatation needs to be in the legs and hips because that's the densest part of your body. Your torso needs flexibility, but your torso is not as dense as you are from the hips down. Every swim coach says if you can get your hips up and swim in that downhill position you will swim a lot faster.
IT.com: What do you have in the works right now?
Emilio De Soto: We have lots of cool stuff for 2008. We've just recently gotten involved in making custom team apparel. We also are just finishing up 2008 product designs. We made some funky things like arm coolers. They keep the sun off your arms and have a ventilating effect based on fabric design. We've sold more arm coolers in first 6 months than arm warmers in previous 15 years. I have so many ideas, but I don't have enough time to execute them all. I would rather it be that way then to have time and no ideas.
After playing for an hour against D.C. United on Wednesday, it was brilliant to play the full ninety minutes against Red Bull New York, especially as it was my first full MLS game. On top of being given the honour of captain again, I managed to set up a few goals, which obviously, was a great feeling even though we were really unfortunate to concede a late goal and lose the game. The atmosphere at the Giants’ stadium was incredible, and there was a huge turnout for the match which really gave us all a fantastic buzz.
I’m not used to the harder ground out here, but being quite stubborn, I was determined to play the whole game and I’m glad that I did.
I’m still getting to know my team mates on the pitch and learning more about the way they play with every game, but I feel I’ve played a part over the past two fixtures and I’m really looking forward to future matches, starting with our derby against Chivas USA.
Whilst I was in New York, I also helped to support a soccer clinic at FC Harlem. The MLS has dedicated a field in Harlem for the team and adidas are providing the team kit for the club too. It was a really positive event and I enjoyed working and playing with the children there.
I’m currently in the UK training with the England Squad before the friendly with Germany on Wednesday. It was great to be called up and to be part of the set up is always an honour. Hopefully, I’ll get to play a part against Germany and if I do I’ll let you know how it goes here!
Speak to you soon.
By: Betsy Delcour
Chris Hauth is an elite age grouper who broke through in 2006, winning Ford Ironman Couer d’Alene. But he experienced success long before in another sport, competing at the Olympics twice. In addition, he is a successful businessman and family man. He also runs his own coaching business, and is a contributor to Xtri. Hauth is a guy who does it all! Read on for more about his thoughts on the state of the Tri community and what it’s like racing at the top…
What was life like for you as a kid? Do you have any siblings? Were you a good student? What sports were you involved in as a kid?
Chris Hauth: I grew up the majority of my teens in Munich, Germany. I carry dual citizenship and am bilingual. I have 2 brothers – both older. I was an average student and always focused on my swimming. I have been swimming since 4 yrs. old and was told early on I would swim in the Olympics. I followed that lead for the rest of my life. In Germany we all play soccer. I tried some basketball but I was horrible – just an annoyingly good defensive player that was in everybody’s face but could not do anything with the ball once my team was on offense.
Most of us know you now as an elite triathlete, but you actually reached the pinnacle of another sport – swimming – by representing Germany at the ’92 and ’96 Olympics. What were those experiences like? What was your strongest swim style?
I was a 200 butterfly swimmer and loved the 400 Indiv. Medley. So, I swam all events – although backstroke was by far my worst stroke. Today – without backstroke, you can’t be a good IMer since I would never catch up to the Phelps’s of the world later in the race. The Olympics are everything you dream, hear and see them to be. Overwhelming but also the most incredible experience. Too often we look right past that moment since it is also our most focused, trained and prepared for 2 weeks of our lives. So, I don’t really think I enjoyed them as much as I would now!
Tell us about your first triathlon. How did you transition from single sport swimming to triathlon? Were you immediately racing tri’s at an elite level, or was it more of a gradual build for you?
Ha! Most of my athletes around me and friends know this story. I took part in St. Anthony’s Triathlon in 1996 – as part of cross-training for my prep for the Atlanta Games. I need to do things different at this point in my training for swimming since I was working a lot and traveling. I ran a lot in cities and countries I could not swim in. It made me feel good I did something to further my fitness when I was not in the pool (today I know it had ZERO benefit other than sanity!). I figured I would do this triathlon since in 1996 St. Anthony’s was a big East Coast race. I had done a sprint on the Jersey shore, but that was more a swim with some biking and running on the back end with a bunch of buddies. St. Anthony’s I actually took seriously. I came in feeling like I was in great swim shape but got out of the 1.5 km swim in 3rd!! Then I realized the swimmers ahead of me were 1988 & 1992 Gold Medal Olympian David Berkhoff and Lars Jorgensen, a great distance swimmer in the US who had just missed the 1992 US team (I think..). After the race I was taking to them and realized that this is where swimmers go after their swimming careers – sort of like an elephant graveyard. My result? Way back – middle of the pack. But I got the bug and entered a Half a few weeks later. I did the Gulf Coast Triathlon (Half IM) on only swim training! No biking or running! I got so shelled in the race – I walked, threw up, suffered soo much. When I crossed the finish line the announcer said “somebody better help this guy out – he doesn’t look so good!”… Even more of a bug now since I had to figure it out. I entered IM Canada after moving to California in 1997. 10:27 and a rolldown slot. While I ran a 3:54 after taking out in a 1:37, I learned enough and on I went from there.
When did you move to the States, and what brought you here?
Life as a kid was always in between Germany and the US. Always back and forth between New York / New Jersey and Munich, Germany. I have lived in both countries all my life until college in 1989. But I have been here since then – my first year in college – that brought me here permanently.
What’s it like living and training in Marin, CA? Is it a multisport paradise?
Marin is heaven. True “MultiSport’ paradise since everyone here is fit and strong at something. Cycling, triathlon, mountain biking, trail running, surfing, kiting, and of course all the winter fun is just 3 hrs. away. While Boulder has all its current stars, Marin has so many ex-Olympians or phenomenal athletes – you never know who you are talking to at a backyard party!
You had a breakthrough period in ’05-’06 on multiple levels: you got married, had a baby, partnered in a new start-up venture and won IMCDA. How did you juggle all of these different elements while maintaining balance in your life and training at a top level?
Nothing changed. No juggling etc. (my wife will argue that!) I think it was 8 years of steady miles and consistency that allowed me to keep moving forward. My goal in this sport after ‘hanging on’ to swimming for a bit too long, has always been to keep improving. Once I don’t continue to improve for a few races, I know I have reached my potential. Then I will move on to something else….
But to answer the question better: I try to ensure that every workout counts and it the best use of my time. I used to just head out and run or ride. Well, when you don’t have as much time you need to know what you are doing is helping you achieve that goal at the end of the season. I started working more focused and integrated more quality into my training. I also know so much more about recovery, training cycles, phases and when to train what effort than I used to.
Although you’ve won or placed well at other races (most notably Honu 70.3 in ’05 and ’06), winning an IM catapults you to another realm. Has your ’06 IMCDA victory changed anything for you? Has it put pressure on you to perform well at every race you do?
IM CDA was a great experience. It was my hardest day in an Ironman! I have never had 2000 people chase me before since I led from the first 200 yards of the swim. I told Chris Lieto after how much more I respect his racing off the front on the bike because it is HARD when you are the rabbit! I have been so fortunate with sports all my life that I don’t feel any pressure anymore. I used to in swimming, but not in triathlon. I specialize in Ironman and it is such a long day that you can make up for minor mistakes and feeling bad. In swimming – you were done often with a bad turn or start! I have 9 hours to figure it out in Ironman. I am also 37, just gone Professional and I know I am not going to shock the world with results. I want to continue to improve ever so slightly and see where I go with it. How lucky am I already? I have won a Half IM, an IM, I have done great in swimming and now I am making a living in the sport by coaching. What more can anybody ask for?
Many of us in the tri community are familiar with Charlie Yu’s famous letter where he singled you out in his argument that people cannot claim that they are “Ironmen” unless they race at Kona (even though you’ve competed at Kona multiple times; Yu has since apologized for his letter). Do you think that many triathletes today harbor elitist tendencies, or do you think they are just a minority?
I wrote Charlie back in a letter (since published everywhere!!) that this sport is not about boasting your accomplishments at the water cooler the next morning in the office. This sport is about a healthy, fit, fun lifestyle that is open to everybody. How great is triathlon that all of us race in the same arena – on the same roads, ride the same bikes and swim in the same waters? Just think if in the Olympics they had heats in the morning where everybody could swim in the same pool on the same day? Post your time and then see later on in the evening what the Worlds Best do? That’s what Ironman Triathlon or most Olympic distance events allow.
Many might see triathletes as elitists, but I also think so many are extremely proud of their training & racing accomplishments. So many triathletes sacrifice soo much of their time to train (some would argue too much time!) – of course there is a sense of pride and aura of invincibility with that. We read daily about how unhealthy our society is becoming yet here are triathletes living extremely healthy and doing so much to ensure they are strong, fit and uninjured. All this must create an underlying sense of being ‘ahead of the curve’. I think it is great!
You have a recently new business, BigRing Leasing. Tell us about it and how you came up with this idea? Your background is in finance, having worked on Wall Street and Charles Schwab & Co. in San Francisco. How does this kind of work suit you better?
Big Ring was started a few years ago when I realized how many bikes everybody has and how often they switch out their gear (upgrade). I also noticed how many people were buying $3000 - $6000 bikes (and gear) on credit card or wished they could afford better equipment. That is why I started Big Ring bike leasing. It allows for that option, to ride the latest bike at a fraction of the cost. Just like a car you lease to buy. After 12 or 18 months you can either return the bike, exchange for a new lease or buy it. It actually works out cheaper than buying in many cases since outside of California you save on the sales tax. I have had a lot of fun and growth with it. Families with growing kids, cyclists that don’t want to sell their classics but want to ride the latest carbon technology, roadies that want to cyclo cross for a season, mountain bikers that need a road bike etc. It is not supposed to be a financial option for everybody – but it is one for plenty of people and they still can own their bike after 12 or 18 months.
Big Ring and AIMP coaching allows me to work from home – have breakfast with my child, spend time with my wife, ride with my athletes, be my own boss. Being around to watch your children grow and not having someone dictate your day is the greatest privelege I can imagine. It might not last forever, but for now I think it can!
You have such a full schedule – what’s your favorite way to relax?
Relax?.....What? Just joking: after Ironman Louisville next week I am taking the family back to Germany. Relaxing to me is sitting in my favorite Biergarten in the shade, drinking a German brew, eating a big pretzel and watching my daughter run around playing in the kids area.
Monday, August 20, 2007
I won the Swedish Champs, olympic distance, on Saturday!
After European Champs (2nd) and a dismal World Champs (16th), I´ve had a month of initial recovery followed by a great block of training with the goal of racing a fast Ironman in Almere, Netherlands coming Saturday. I´ve never really raced one of those speedy courses and Almere is certainly one of the fastest:)
Anyway, that training, which included a number of +8 hour days, had left me a tad bit tired and flat last week but a few massages and cold dips had me back feeling snappy and hunky-dory come Saturday. Or so I thought...
With the abscense of Björn, who´s doing his best tearing up some US races, I was hoping not having to go full throttle on this cold and windy day but as soon as we got lined up on the beach with a heavy smell of neoprene being peed in, magicmarker and testosterone flying high, I knew that there´s no such thing as winning easy or racing comfortably. It´s all ugly to me. Always has been.
The swim had all the ingredients of my personal nightmare; long running in shallow water with a turnaround on the beach after one lap. That´s helluva lot of running for a swim! And I´m a terrible hurdler/watersprinter, never could get those knees up fast enough. And it totally winds me so when I came ´round lap one feeling all maxed out and agegroupy I knew that it wouldn´t get any worse in terms of effort...The fast boys ditched me like a bad habit and when I got out onto the bike I was a minute back, going on two, judging by the way my legs felt. I snapped out of my misery and bore down on my 56-11 in the tailwind and had made up a lot at the turnaround and by the time I hit 20 k I was in the lead. So the second lap was all me trying to do my best Björn-imitation racing out of sight out of mind and I figured I´d almost pulled it off as I had a minute twenty once I slipped my flats on.
But don´t count your chickens bla bla and all that cuz´sure enough these young kids don´t let up so easy. Erik Strand, Swedens representative in the U-23 Worlds in Hamburg, tried to run my down and flew out of T2 like a bat out of hell and he put a ridiculous 45 seconds on me in the first lap of 2.5 km. Sure as hell made me feel like Godzilla running when I saw the young speedster in my rearview mirror. But as lap two and three wore on I kinda held on to my slim lead which at one point was down to ten seconds. So in the last few k´s I had to dig a little bit in my suffercabinet and I managed to kick it up a notch and held firmly to the line. Which was great since I was just about to get tired!
Anyhow, it was a great ballbreaker for next weekend and I even managed to win the Swedish Cup after having won three of five races and placing 2nd in two, one of which Björn beat me in; the Swedish Sprint Champs.
And here in Sweden the fun just won´t stop so today I raced an invitational supersprint outside of Stockholm with a 100 metreswim, a 3 k MTB and a 1000 m run. Held in quarterfinals, semifinals and a final with the best four, it was a true mayhaim of lactic acid and neardeath-experiences in the woods. Damn, those stones and roots on the ground sure makes it harder huh? And I´m totally content with the fact that I`ll NEVER race one of those X-terra races. Some people just dig bruises, cuts and guts. I don´t. Shit, I don´t even like camping that´s how bad I am at roughing it. So with all those excuses said I made it to the finals only by running like a mofo but once there I was outgunned and outnumbered and finished fourth.
Hopefully now a few days of R&R with the Swedish Bikini Team will make me perky and brimming with energy and if all goes well I´ll send you all an update with the results from Holland. If it doesn´t, you´ll have to find them online yourself:)
Saturday, August 18, 2007
After spending the summer back home in Sweden I’m back in the US again to try and defend my victory from last year at Timberman 70.3 in New Hampshire. Like previously this year I haven’t been able to train very consistently since Wildflower tri either unfortunately and I haven’t been able to race as much as I wanted to since then. But with a couple of good weeks training in time for this I’m looking forward to race again.
Timberman has assembled a pretty tough field this year with Simon Lessing, Spencer Smith and Michael Lovato being the main favorites to win. Personally I don’t really know what to expect as the last big triathlon I did was 3 months ago. I planned to do more races but I got sick on and off since may so I had to cancel a few races. In between that I’ve been in pretty good shape a couple of times and I did a few events in Sweden during that time. One of them was the Swedish cycling championships which started of with the time trial. I was going pretty well in that race until my cassette body broke and the slow wheel change I did and the momentum I lost ruined that race. The road race was a couple of days later and took part on a 15 loop technical criterium type course making the race 200km.in total. Those kind of courses are pretty bad for me not being the most explosive cyclist around plus not being used to those kind of pace changes that occurs on a course like that. It was kind of like an all out sprint for me after every corner to hang in but I did some work for the team I rode for and hung in the front group for about 170km before I decided to call it a day. The day before that I also took part and managed to win the Swedish triathlon sprint championships so it was a pretty intense but fun weekend all in all.
As I said I don’t know where I stand but my goal this weekend will be to have a solid race and hopefully qualify for the 70.3 championships in Clearwater later this year. So let’s keep our fingers crossed for similarly cold and rainy weather like last year in New Hampshire this weekend and I’ll get back with a hopefully positive race report next week.
Recovox wants to wish Bjorn the best of luck!
Germany's Jens Voigt (CSC ) won the Tour of Germany on Sunday for the second consecutive year.
T-Mobile's Gerald Ciolek won the 143km finale, his third straight stage win, as the tour concluded in Hanover.
American rider Levi Leipheimer (Discovery Channel) finished second overall at 1:57 back.
1. Jens Voigt, CSC, 30:57:21
2. Levi Leipheimer, Discovery Channel, at 1:57
3. David Lopez Garcia, Case d'Epargne, at 2:10
4. Leonardo Bertagnolli, Liquigas, at 3:05
5. Robert Gesink, Rabobank, at 3:15
6. Chris Sörensen, CSC, at 4:06
7. Maxime Monfort, Cofidis, at 5:22
8. Laurens Ten Dam, Unibet.com, at 5:26
9. Erik Gustav Larsson, Unibet.com, at 6:08
10. Davide Rebellin, Gerolsteiner, at 6:16
Friday, August 17, 2007
10. Challenge Roth
Located in the heart of Bavaria in southwest Germany, the Challenge race organizers host one of the world's largest iron-distance races and post-race parties to complement this class-A race. Even if you race, your tired legs will find themselves hobbling to the finish line for one of the best finish line parties around. Don't miss the brunch the following morning in which everyone, including the race winners, attend complete with chanting, singing, and indulging in tasty Bavarian cuisine.
9. Lifetime Fitness
This exclusive party hosted by Lifetime CEO Braham Akradi includes stretch limousine rides for the invitation only professional athletes. The evening begins at Akradi's Martini Blues but athletes move into downtown Minneapolis on Hennepin Avenue where age groupers and pros alike join the Aquatennial festivities.
8. St. Anthony's
The party starts after the race in the beer tents located only yards from the finish line. Sit down and chat with local stars like Jeff Cuddeback or one of the scores of pros who use this season opening classic as a cobweb blaster. Later in the afternoon, the St. Pete's Mad Dog's host a party at a bed and breakfast near Vinoy Park complete with swimming pool, great food, great company and near the local bar scene.
7. Rocky Point
This Spring Break destination is taken over by triathletes who want a fun-filled season opening race in early May. This race attracts a mix bag of participants, usually from the western states, looking for an easy-on-the-wallet adventure. Finishers are greeted at the finish line with a race sponsored Tecate cold one.
6. Xterra Tahoe
Located at the Hyatt Regency in Incline Village on the banks of Lake Tahoe, the Xterra crowd floods the bar after the awards ceremony. Filled with small casinos, athletes dance the night away before filing out to a host of after parties in surrounding condo units.
5. St. Croix
This island gem starts with drinks and dinner at the awards ceremony at the Divanni Casino followed by house parties at one or more of the local home stay houses. The buzz can begin as early as post-race with a sailboat tour ride out to the neighboring Buck Island.
4. Pucon Half-Iron
It is summertime in the Southern Hemisphere and this internationally renowned race is followed by one of the best bashes around. This race week is one long party, including the post-race festivities which could involve hitch hike rides on motorbikes and pickup trucks and drinking the local favorite, Piscola Sour. The following day, Ironman legend Ken Glah serves up the opportunity to trek up Volcano Villarica, which shadows the race course.
This captive environment holds athletes in the confines of inland northern California complete with industry folks, thousands of camping athletes, and the local Cal Poly college crowd show all type-A triathletes how to kick back college-style. If you find the UC-Santa Cruz Banana Slugs club team, you know you have struck the jackpot.
2. Ironman Hawaii
Athletes are ready to let loose after their key A race of the year. The evening begins with the Awards Ceremony where the wine and beer flow freely and potentially carries on late into the evening with a smorgasbord of options along Alii Drive, ultimately ending on the dance floor at Lulu's where you can expect to rub sweaty elbows with your favorite pro.
1. Xterra Maui
This organized, costume party has gained a reputation as the premier party of the year. Held the night after the race, pros and age groupers alike are willing to let their bodies take a pounding during the race and then let loose later that same night. This party coincides with Halloween making costumes a must-have in which athletes pre-meditate their digs months in advance.
By Mark Sisson:
Most folks are aware that “fight or flight” is the body’s natural response to stress. When faced with a stressful situation, we either get aggressive or, in the words of a local surf instructor, we bail. This choice depends upon our perception of the circumstances and our corresponding judgment of the odds of success. The “fight or flight” response is, in terms of energy preservation, tremendously efficient. And it is very effective at ensuring greater odds of survival. This makes sense to everyone on a visceral level, but do you know the physiological mechanisms involved?
The fight or flight response begins in the brain. Various regions operate in concert to detect, sense, decode, and respond to a stimulus. Though there are a few different pathways for a given feeling (like fear) to travel, it is ultimately the hypothalamus that is responsible for triggering the fight or flight response. Once the hypothalamus goes to work, what I call your survival systems, i.e. the “gut”, kick into gear. They are the nervous system and the adrenal-cortical system.
Enter physical symptoms: sweating, heart palpitations, muscles tensing, hearing sharpening. You are now extraordinarily alert, but only on the issue at hand: concentration and awareness of anything else fly out the window. The nervous system has flooded your body with adrenaline (scientists often refer to this as epinephrine) and noradrenaline (norepinephrine). Meanwhile, the adrenal-cortical system (which produces these hormones) becomes activated by way of the pituitary gland. The pituitary gland secretes a hormone known as ACTH (adrenocorticotropic hormone…say that three times fast). ACTH journeys - via the bloodstream - to your adrenal cortex, where these small organs will pump out as many as 30 different hormones to address the stressful situation at hand (the adrenals are “fed” by cholesterol). And your immune system temporarily shuts down so your body can utilize all its resources to deal with the perceived threat.
The adrenal cortex produces cortisol, DHEA, estrogen and testosterone, among many other hormones. It’s a beautiful system. Unfortunately, what worked for our old friend Grok does not, I believe, work so well for us. Simply put, our modern lifestyle subjects us to a potentially enormous amount of stress on a daily basis that the body has simply not evolved to handle. To my mind it’s a bit like “deer in the headlights”. We have a big deer overpopulation problem in my area, and you always hear comments along the lines of how dumb the deer are around automobiles. Well, in my opinion they’re not so dumb - in evolutionary terms, after all, cars are very new on the scene. The deer simply haven’t adapted the appropriate stress response. Is it so different for humans?
Theoretically then, persistent, low-level stress - which the body unfortunately interprets as warranting a “fight or flight” response - is destructive to health. In other words, being stuck in traffic for two hours a day, every day, is the equivalent of a serious survival threat to your as-yet “primal” brain, and the adrenals pump accordingly. Cortisol serves many important functions, including the rapid release of glycogen stores for immediate energy. But persistent cortisol release requires that other vital mechanisms effectively shut down - immunity, digestion, healthy endocrine function, and so on. Among other stress-health associations, the link between elevated cortisol and weight gain has already been established.
At this point I hope you can begin to imagine the potential health ramifications of what is often called “adrenal fatigue”: daily compromised immunity, continuous stress hormone release, being “on edge” generally, exhausted sex hormones (remembering my admittedly pet theory of why male endurance athletes often suffer from diminishing testosterone production and consequent receding hair). Your body thinks it must survive at all costs - and is there ever a cost.
Though I’m no Green, nor do I think moving to the woods to commune with the grubs is a viable (or desirable) solution to mitigating stress, the tremendous volume and scope of stressful stimuli present in the modern, fast-paced lifestyle may play a very critical role in the high rates of diabetes, metabolic syndrome, obesity, depression and anxiety we’re seeing (among many health problems). At any rate, I firmly believe this to be so. (Humorous note: apparently shopping is physically stressful for men. But then, planning holiday events and managing social obligations is stressful to women. At the risk of announcing my bah-humbugness to the world, the holidays are inordinately stressful to everyone.)
Managing stress, then, is paramount to maximizing optimal health. To the extent that you can, reduce the “noise” in your life - from entertainment, from frivolous or excess obligations, from fractious relationships, from debt, and so on. Managing stress is a very big topic indeed, and we’ll be addressing it more in future posts. For now, here are the key factors I believe are necessary to reducing stress:
- Consume antioxidant-rich foods such as fruits and vegetables. I also recommend a multivitamin that contains a comprehensive and potent antioxidant profile. Completely avoid processed, empty calories found in snacks, junk food and fast food.
- Consume adequate beneficial fats to utilize antioxidants, vitamins, enzymes and co-factors. Wild Alaskan salmon, pure fish oil pills, olive oil, nuts and avocados are good places to start. I don’t go in for the Omega-enhanced Tropicana or miracle mayonnaise, personally.
- Manage expectations: your own and others’. Ambition and motivation and generous support are all great traits to possess. But don’t over-promise to others or yourself. None of us knows the future.
- Exercise daily. I cannot stress this enough. Exercise releases endorphins and helps to regulate the production of critical brain hormones.
- Unhook daily. Most of us spend so much time on the input-output cycle, we don’t give adequate time to simply absorbing it all. Reflect, relax, restore. I personally like to spend a little time each day reflecting on what I am grateful for (I call this doing my “appreciations”.) Prayer, meditation, singing, cooking and other activities that get you out of your head and into the moment are vital to helping you manage the stress of constant stimuli and energy demands. “Think positive” is nice advice, but it’s tough to do if you are at your limit. It’s easier to find an action that naturally lends itself to positive thinking and feeling, rather than trying to control your thoughts. That in and of itself can become stressful. Find an immersing action that works for you and do it religiously.
Germany's Jens Voigt of CSC consolidated his overall lead of the Tour of Germany by winning the race's eighth and penultimate stage in Furth Friday.
Voigt, the defending champion, dominated the 33.1km time trial in a time of 39:42 to hold off Laszlo Bodrogi of Hungary and American Levi Leipheimer.
The race ends after the ninth and final stage into Hanover on Saturday.
Thursday, August 16, 2007
The last two weeks have been incredible here in Boulder. I have been able to get out on the back ranges along the continental divide with Boulder local and Pro Triathlete Cameron Widoff. I have know Cameron for a few years now and he has been living here in Boulder for 16 years. He knows some amazing rides and honestly of all the places I have been in the world, we did a 7 hour ride last week through the back ranges of Colorado that was some of the most beautiful riding I have ever done in my life. Absolutely breathtaking scenery, tough climbs and awesome little gold mining towns that are deserted now. I think what makes it so difficult here in Colorado on these climbs in comparison to many of the rides I have done in Europe in the Alps or the Pyrenees, is that you start so high from the plains here in Boulder. Boulder sits at the base of the mountain ranges yet it is 5500 feet above sea level.
The minute you leave Boulder and head up into the mountain ranges you are climbing above this height even further. We did most of our riding last week at above 8000 feet which was incredible and extremely difficult. The mountains in Europe just dont have this sort of altitude because you start th cimbs much closer to sea level. It is some tough riding here and really beautiful scenery. We are still looking for a place to buy here in Boulder.
It is a cute little town and Emma will be back from Sydney in a couple of weeks and will look for houses. Wes Hobson a former triathlete and mate, is an estate agent here in town and has been showing us around the properties in Boulder and Niwot. We will buy something here and live here for the next few years. I really like the town and will be interested to see how tough the winters will be. We wil probably go down to Arizona or California for a break in the winters to get some training done, but I really would like my kids to learn to ski a little.
Anyway my next race is in 3 weeks in Monaco so things are building well for that. It will signal the halfway point of my Kona training block and I should come back from here and commence the more intensive training work for Kona. I am really looking forward to racing Kona off this altitude work. It is just so tough and it will be interesting to see how big I can build the aerobic engine up here. The heat has been up here so that is good. Anyway not much else to report. It has been fun in town and we have had a few funny nights out in Pearl Street.
My young training partner, Paul Ambrose is going to court today for speeding in our car and not wearing a seat belt. He is a little nervous so we will pop in and see what happens. Other than that it is just business as usual. I am off to Henk Vogels place tonight. He is a pro cyclist from Australia and a good mate. It is great he is in town as he is a top bloke and great to grab a beer with and have a chat. Anyway i better go riding. will write again in a few days.
The Discovery Channel team will bid adieu to their American supporters by sending a star-studded team to the inaugural Tour of Missouri in September. The Tour de France champion Alberto Contador and third placed finisher Levi Leipheimer will head up a strong team including George Hincapie, Yaroslav Popovych, Tony Cruz, Jason McCartney, John Devine and Fuyu Li.
The Tour of Missouri is seeking to build on the success of the other major US Tours, the Tour de Georgia and Tour of California, and high profile names will help bring in the fans to the 600 mile race which begins in Kansas City on Tuesday, September 11 and finishes in St. Louis the following Sunday.
"To have Johan Bruyneel commit to bringing Discovery Channel's Tour de France 'dream team' to the Tour of Missouri is very special for this first-time race," said race director Jim Birrell. "We will have three riders from the top eight of the Tour de France, two being from the final podium, and I look forward to hosting the entire Discovery Channel team during their swan song on domestic soil."
The race will not only be the team's final event, but will also be its director's swan song. Bruyneel announced he would retire from the sport after the announcement that Tailwind Sports, the owner of the team, was ending its search for sponsorship and dissolving the team.
"I have always enjoyed directing in the U.S. because of our success and an amazing group of fans that come to see us race," Bruyneel said. "It is sad to think that this will be one of the last times I will be directing, but I am glad it will be in front of a such great fans."
Leipheimer will be seeking to bookend a successful year with another win in Missouri. "I have had an amazing 2007 season which started out when I won the Amgen Tour of California," Leipheimer said, "followed by a successful showing at the Tour de Georgia and then finishing on the podium at the Tour de France. It is only fitting to close it out my season with a US homecoming at the Tour of Missouri." Leipheimer continued, "I have always said that there is nothing that compares to racing at home and it will be very special for me to have guys like Alberto, Popo and George riding next to me in my final race as a Discovery Channel Team member."
Chris Horner has never been shy about his opinions regarding Lance Armstrong in the past. And when he heard the news about Tailwind Sports ending its search for a new sponsor, he had some hard-hitting analysis of Armstrong's and the company's decision.
"I read what Lance has said about the sport, and it is just ridiculous to read something so stupid, from a guy who has made his career off the sport. Now they can't find a sponsor and say they are pulling out just because they don't want to look for one? I don't believe it. You tell me Lance is giving up money? He raced his whole career looking for it, because he was a businessman more than the love of the sport. Now he is telling us that it isn't a good place for the sport so we are pulling out. Are you really telling me that?
All it is is he can't find a sponsor. Instead he's saying, 'I'm Lance Armstrong, I finally couldn't accomplish something so we're pulling out instead.' If I'm wrong, prove me wrong Lance -- go out and find a sponsor! Instead it was 'we're leaving, I don't like the sport anymore'. No, just leave and get out. I'm sorry if those weren't his exact words, but if what I am reading is, then it is ridiculous and irresponsible."
"It makes it a bit tougher for guys like myself, but at the same time I don't see that too many of those guys affect me. But some riders might not have jobs next year, assuming that more teams don't come in. Or they won't be with a ProTour team. That's a possibility, and that might be me too! Because Lance wants to get out of the sport he is going to unemploy half of his team. Personal opinion again, but that has to be the biggest bullshit story I have ever read!"
"All these people can say what they want about the sport going downhill right now... are they crazy? Were they not in London? Did Lance forget about it? How do you make those comments when you saw what happened there? To have a start and stage there, plus the stage in Belgium, that alone justifies the money to have a ProTour team. Nothing else even matters! Take those first three days of the Tour de France, and it automatically proves Lance wrong. Undeniable fact! I don't care what anybody wants to come back and say how much they love Lance, it's an undeniable fact that the first three days make it worth it. That's not even counting the people watching it on TV around the world! That is just the people who came out. In London they had Wimbledon, a huge concert event, Formula 1... and we did 125 miles the first day and there weren't 10 miles of a gap where if you stopped you wouldn't have been peeing on someone's foot!"
"Anyone whose job is to look at sports and find where best to put your money, and says it's not in cycling, has never been to a cycling event. Or maybe he went to Valley of the Sun! Maybe someone can go back and look at the different sponsors of Tour de France teams and prove to me they lost money from advertising at some point, but I don't think so. $3-7 million dollars for a sponsorship, and you cannot tell me it doesn't justify what the Tour de France brought you -- just the first three days! Anyone who prints what they want in USA Today or wherever has never been the Tour de France before or any race of value. Or is a complete idiot... probably the latter."
Wednesday, August 15, 2007
With only a TT to go it looks as if big Jens has in second TOG won!
1 Jens Voigt (Ger) Team CSC 22.52.24
2 David Lopez Garcia (Spa) Caisse d'Epargne 0.33
3 Robert Gesink (Ned) Rabobank 1.14
4 Chris Anker Sørensen (Den) Team CSC 1.24
5 Levi Leipheimer (USA) Discovery Channel Pro Cycling Team 1.31
6 Leonardo Bertagnolli (Ita) Liquigas 2.19
7 Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Unibet.com 2.34
8 Damiano Cunego (Ita) Lampre-Fondital 2.48
9 Davide Rebellin (Ita) Gerolsteiner 3.27
10 Maxime Monfort (Bel) Cofidis-Le Crédit par Téléphone 3.45
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
David López García of Caisse d'Epargne won the queen stage up to the 2671-metre high Rettenbachferner, while a super strong Jens Voigt (CSC) defended his yellow jersey on a day where many expected Levi Leipheimer to take over the lead. But the American suffered a set back and lost almost a minute to the defending champion.
The stage finished with the Rettenbachferner, an HC ranked climb or glacier that quickly took its toll on the field. As the peloton entered the bottom part of the eight numbered switchbacks, only 20 riders were left, including Levi Leipheimer and Jens Voigt. The lead group got steadily reduced to about 10, when López García attacked and soloed away.
The biggest surprise happened just after the three-kilometre banner, as Levi Leipheimer started to have problems. An inspired Voigt took over the lead of the main chasers and even put Damiano Cunego and Robert Gesink in trouble.
While he couldn't reach the Spaniard in the front, Voigt made his overall situation look more comfortable. He said right after the race that in the end team tactics don't count on a finish like that. "100 team-mates can't help you if you don't have the legs. Fortunately I was feeling very good today. When I heard over the radio that Levi started to have problems I became really inspired."
Saturday, August 11, 2007
Five-time Leadville Trail 100 mountain-bike race winner Dave Wiens was first across the line again on Saturday, but Floyd Landis - despite a bloody crash early on - finished right behind him in second.
Wiens completed the out-and-back course in 6:58:46, bettering last year's finish of 7 hours and 13 minutes, with Landis crossing less than two minutes behind him. Mike Kloser was third, some 10 minutes off the pace.
Landis, riding on a surgically repaired hip, told The Associated Press that he crashed about an hour into the race. At the finish he sported scrapes on elbows and forearms, bandages on three fingers and blood-soaked gauze swaddling one leg from just above his knee to his hip.
"I'm never going to do this again," he joked, then added: "I'm glad I came and did this. I really enjoyed it."
Landis, who tested positive during last year's Tour for a skewed testosterone-epitestosterone ratio, then subsequently for exogenous testosterone, has spent most of this season on the sidelines, awaiting the findings of an arbitration panel.
His only other competition came June 2 during the Teva Mountain Games in Vail, Colorado, where he finished nearly 25 minutes behind the winner.
Leadville Trail 100 MTB race
1. Dave Wiens, 6:58:46
2. Floyd Landis, 7:00:30
3. Mike Kloser, 7:10:23
4. Max Taam, 7:31:27
5. Jake Rubelt, 7:34:51
6. Thane Wright, 7:37:02
7. Mike Hogan, 7:37:42
8. Ryan Hamilton, 7:42:16
9. Thomas Dooley, 7:44:59
10. Adam Plummer, 7:45:26
11. Nat Ross, 7:47:37
12. Travis Macy, 7:53:35
13. Todd Carver, 7:55:12
14. Nate Whitman, 7:56:30
15. Dax Massey, 7:57:09
16. Jim Silverman, 7:58:02
17. Daniel Murray, 7:58:15
18. Kimo Seymour, 7:58:46
19. James Kahkoska, 7:59:37
20. Ward Baker, 8:01:59
Normann Stadler strikes back at the HeidelbergMan (1.7 km swimming, 36 km cycling and 10 km running). He triumphed in 2:05:44 hours with 26 seconds over Sebastian Kienle and the winner of the Ironman Frankfurt Timo Bracht. Stadler had the fourth best swim time (21:28 minutes), the second best cycling time (1:09:37 hours) and the best running time (34:39 minutes) to win the race on the technically challenging track.
1. Stadler, Norman (Dresdner Kleinwort) 2:05:44
2. Kienle, Sebastian (Tri-Team Heuchelberg) 2:06:10
3. Bracht, Timo (MTG Mannheim Caps Team) 2:08:05
4. Lange, Moritz (Triflow Bad Endbach) 2:11:20
5. Becker, Hendrik (3athlon.org) 2:12:01
Friday, August 10, 2007
Coach Matthew Clancy has been coaching athletes in swimming, cycling, running and multi-sport for over five years. A USAT Level II, and USAC Level III coach, Matt has worked with, and current works with, beginner, youth, collegiate and professional athletes.
In the last four years he has been competing as a professional triathlete and duathlete himself, while completing his graduate degree in sports psychology. Matt was contacted by Tom Hodge of Recovox in 2005 to try Recovox. Seven overall wins later, Matt contacted Tom to build a partnership. Recovox is a current 2007 sponsor for the complete Compass Elite performance team. “I’m ecstatic to have Recovox as a part of this company, these athletes,” explains Matt. “In an industry where there are almost as many products as there are athletes, when you find something that is safe, smart, and works, you stick with it. My athletes have stuck with it, and continue to perform at peak levels physically and mentally.”
For more information on Coach Matt or his athletes, he asks you to contact him personally at firstname.lastname@example.org , or through the Compass Elite website, www.compasselite.com
One of Team CSC's greatest victories in 2006 was by Jens Voigt, when he won the Deutschland Tour after no less than three stage wins – one more spectacular than the other. Now it is time for "Jensie" to defend his title, when this year's edition of the Deutschland Tour kicks off on Friday.
A while back Jens warned that it would be a lot harder for him to win this one, because the mountains are bigger and tougher in this year's route. During a chat on the Team CSC Official Fan Club website Voigt explained:
"They've included this gigantic mountain - the toughest climb in the entire ProTour calendar – so unfortunately I've gotta say that my chances are somewhat limited."
But this was before Voigt showed such great form during Tour de France, where he finished among the top-30 after several brilliant performances along the way – some of these in the mountain stages. And Voigt is a modest guy so it is not entirely unthinkable that we will be able to find him among the main contenders for the yellow jersey again.
However Voigt is not the only possible contender in Team CSC's line-up, which is both aimed at a good overall result as well as a stage win or two. Actually it will be a very all-round group starting on Friday.
Among others Bobby Julich is said to be in great shape and if this is the case both he and Andy Schleck might be able to mingle in the battle for a podium spot. However Schleck has only just started building up his form ahead of races like Giro di Lombardia later on in the season.
During Dauphiné Libéré Volodymir Gustov also showed, what a great help he can be to guys like Voigt on the climbs and this also goes for young Chris Anker Sørensen – a lot of you probably remember his fantastic 14th place on Mont Ventoux in Dauphiné Libéré. Chris Anker has also emerged from the training camp in July in top form.
And finally Alexandr Kolobnev has done well recently with his fifth place in Tour de la Region Wallonne and Fabian Cancellara – well, what can you say about this guy – he is capable of anything and you never quite know, what he will come up with.
So it is more or less a given that Team CSC has to be among the favorites in the team time trial, which is the second stage.
"We have a very strong line-up and we've got high expectations for the team time trial. We're hoping it will give Jens a good set-off for the rest of the race. And then we'll have to wait and see in fifth stage, when we reach that dreaded mountain, but Jens has come out of the Tour in fantastic shape and he did well in many of the mountains during the Tour so maybe he'll be able to make a repeat performance, who knows?" says sports director Kim Andersen.
Thursday, August 9, 2007
Mathew Dale profiles model and pro triathlete Katja Meyers
The first sign that Katya Meyers will be a pleasure to deal with is when she selects the time to meet for an interview. Models typically don’t do 8:30 a.m. There’s beauty rest, primping, another hour to select the outfit. Models usually say noon, then keep you waiting 45 minutes.
Meyers shows up on time. (OK, five minutes late, which is prompt by San Diego standards.) She’s casually dressed in jeans and a spaghetti-strapped top. Her hair’s damp. Modeling pays the rent, but triathlon represents Meyers’ passion. The hair’s damp because she quickly showered following 70 minutes on the trainer and a 20-minute jog. Since Meyers has been fighting fatigue for months, this represents a casual workout.
Triathlon, by definition, requires a juggling act. Meyers’ lifestyle fits accordingly. There are 12-hour photo shoots, the swim/bike/run thing, plus her future goal - becoming a doctor. Meyers, 27, recently took her Medical College Admission Test and was pleased with her results. But med school can wait. Meyers doesn’t want to turn 50 and wonder how good she might have been. So she plans to push the tri thing a couple more years before moving on to medicine.
After a dominating amateur triathlon career, Meyers has seen modest results as a pro. A fourth last year at Ironman France, a ninth at Canada in 2005, an 11th this year at Australia represent the highlights.
“I want to keep trying to put it together,” Meyers says, “racing as long as it’s a viable option.”
With Meyers’ Eastern European look and lyrical first name, strangers might view her as mysterious, even exotic. Instead, she’s down home and shy, blended with equal parts beauty, brains (Stanford educated) and athleticism. (Meyers’ mother modeled through medical school and named her first daughter after another dancer.)
But forget exotic. She grew up in rural Kentucky and Illinois and was named Miss Tobacco Queen in Russellville, Ky. Her father owns farmland in three states, raising cows and horses.
Gymnastics represented Meyers’ sport of choice in her youth. At Stanford, she rowed until sampling triathlon as a junior. Her first race proved memorable.
“I made it to the first buoy and clung to it,” says Meyers, who to this day is not exactly Janet Evans in the water. “I made it to the second buoy and clung to it. That’s how I got through the swim.”
Forgetting her helmet, Meyers’ first transition wasn’t the best either. She crossed the finish line second, then was DQ’d for the helmet miscue. Still, she was hooked.
“It was just the rawness of it,” she says.
Within a year after graduating from college, Meyers won her age group at Ironman Coeur d’Alene. It was Triathlete magazine publisher John Duke who suggested that Meyers turn pro.
“If she turned pro, she’d be able to travel the world,” said Duke, one of the sport’s most influential individuals and Meyers’ good friend. “If she’d have stayed an age-grouper, she’d have collected awards that go in a box and would forget about ‘em when she becomes a doctor.”
It was also Duke who jump-started Meyers’ modeling career, recommending her to a photographer.
“She obviously is a very cute girl,” Duke says. “But you never know if a girl can model until they model. Some of the hottest women I’ve seen looked wooden in front of the camera. She’s the other way. She’s a pretty girl, but even prettier in front of the camera.”
Interestingly, Meyers admits she’s shy, yet she’s comfortable in front of the camera.
“I just sort of disengage and have fun,” she says. “A lot of times pictures turn out better when you’re just natural, not forcing things. I kind of pretend the camera’s not there.”
Meyers has been signed to a modeling agency for eight months. She has appeared in two Triathlete swimsuit issues and numerous covers in fitness related magazines.
Meyers projects a healthy lifestyle beyond triathlon and her modeling work. Wanting to steer children to healthier lives, she often speaks to elementary school students.
There may be those who feel Meyers receives more publicity than her results merit which, when analyzed, makes no sense. Suppose Meyers moonlighted as a mortgage broker instead of as a model? No one would complain about her source of income. But because she models and some of her work appears in Triathlete, people get chippy.
“If other people are jealous about that, that’s their own fault,” says 15-time Ironman champion Heather Fuhr. “That’s part of being a professional athlete, being the whole package. You go with what you got. She’s a beautiful girl. She might as well use that.”
As for Meyers wanting to become a doctor, there’s significant family influence there. Her mother, Lucy, is a practicing pediatrician. Her father, Robert, is a former orthopedic surgeon. As a child, Meyers often made rounds with her father and observed surgeries.
“I like the idea of having a tangible skill you can use to help people,” Meyers says.
There is nothing phony about the woman. As the scrapes on her shins and forearms attest, Meyers has eaten pavement more than once falling off the bike. During photo shoots, she sometimes asks assistants if they want to apply makeup to her bruises and abrasions.
“That’s who you are,” photographers tell her. “That’s cool.”
No one questions her toughness. Meyers won a local half marathon last year 10 days after breaking her shoulder in a bike crash. She ran with her left arm immobilized, clinging to her sport bra.
Duke is the first to admit Meyers likely would fare better as a triathlete if she focused solely on the sport.
“But she’s made a lot more money being a model (than a triathlete) and ultimately will earn a lot more money as a doctor. She’s got a balanced portfolio,” says Duke.
Besides, Meyers likes her place in life.
“I do,” she says. “I don’t think this is my final destination. My friends say, 'You have so many plates spinning.’ But I like having interests, focusing on more than one area at a time.”