Friday, 26 June 2009

Bono drops in for a chat

Alex Wetterhall Wins Swedish Elite Time Trial Championships

Alex Wetterhall gave Team Magnus Maximus the perfect start to the national championships
week with a victory in the Elite time trial.

Wetterhall set the fastest time and then had to endure that classic wait as one by one the finishers failed
to better it. With defending champion Fredrik Ericsson off last he pushed the Maximus riders time close
at all the intermediate time checks with only seconds in it.

In the end Wetterhall took the title by 17 seconds to give the perfect gift to team manager Magnus Backstedt,
who won both the national time trial and road race titles in his long career.

"For us it is a dream come true to take an elite national title in our first year as a pro team. It reinforces what
we are doing as a team and makes us even more committed to bring in a major sponsor for next season to grow
what we are doing for the future.

I'm so proud of Alex, he has worked incredibly hard and followed the training and preparation to the letter.
I have never been so nervous in my life, waiting for the last riders to come in. He really deserves this" Said
Backstedt afterwards.

Wetterhall has made the most of the teams back up from Powertap combined with the guidance and training from
Backstedt and his own former coach Steve Benton.

For Alex who comes from a mountain bike background and narrowly missed out on an Olympic place last year,
it shows that he has a strong future on the road ahead of him.

"I went into the race totally prepared and focussed, I'm lucky enough to have had my Viner time trial bike at home to
train on for quite a while leading into the championships, Steve has closely monitored our training right up until
the last minute and we have one of the best mentors in Magnus to guide us. Maggy has advised me on and set
up my position on the time trial bike based on all the time he's spent in the wind tunnel.

I can't quite believe it, I'm totally ecstatic to take a victory of this magnitude. I had the opportunity to ride
the Tour de L'Ain and Tour of Ireland last year, I learned a lot. I'm another year stronger and more experienced.
This is such an important victory for myself and my team." Alex concluded.

1 Alexander Wetterhall ( 0:55:53 2 Fredrik Ericsson (Capinordic) 0:00:17 3 Fredrik Kessiakoff (Fuji-Servetto) 0:00:47 4 Bjorn Andersson (Boras CA) 0:01:15 5 Christopher Stevenson (Capinordic) 0:01:24

The Amaro breakfast.....


A new surf documentary called Powers of Three, beautiful.

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Strudels rip it at Mountain Mayhem

Team Strudel (Nick Stacey, Nick Coley and Bill Simpson) took on the mighty challenge of doing 24 hours solo (all image courtesy of Graham Stacey, the man behind the lens)

Coley "2.30 am. A very dark place. "

Well done to Nick Coley who came in an amazing 29th and to Bill an equally amazing 32nd!!

Nick Stacey was still hurting from the Bristol 12 hour solo and "bailed after 11ish hours a broken man....."

Sleep now.

Mayhem - 9th place solo for Mule Steve, possibly 2nd solo singlespeed!

A chuffed Pinacolada Mule Steve Day , grinning like a Mule after 24hours in the saddle...

Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Team Mule Bar, Smithfield Nocturne 2009

The winged Mule Ben attacks at the finish!

Saturday June 6th 2009 was the third annual edition of the Smithfield Nocturne hosted by Rapha. Run around the outside of London’s Smithfield market in Farringdon, the racing started at 6pm and went on til well after dark. The now legendary Folding Bike races ran between the Cycling Weekly Support Race, the Elite Womens’ Criterium and the Longest Skid Competition. The course is tight, technical and rough, meaning there were crashes a plenty in every event of the night.

Strudels Dave and Ben lined up in front of 10’000 baying spectators to contest the support race for 2nd and 3rd Cat riders which was to be fought out over approximately 50 minutes of racing. Dave got caught behind one of the two main crashes and separated from the head of the race but finished strongly in the chase group. Ben managed to stay mostly out of trouble and with two riders away for the second half of the race, took third in the bunch sprint, earning 5th place.

Later in the evening, Rebecca and Claire both held on against fierce competition from some of the countries strongest female riders in the Elite Womens’ Criterium. Claire, in her road colours of the London Dynamo had already claimed 10th in the South Eastern Divisional road champs earlier that day. Bec drummed up huge amounts of support from the droves of fans lining the course, proving once again the popularity of the Strudel!

The nest town centre action comes from the Guildford Town Centre Crits on July 8th which features another action-packed night of racing on a predominantly cobbled course!

The girl's got it - Rebecca Mule at the Nocturne (plus a speedy city biker)

Monday, 22 June 2009

Mike (Mule)Tomlinson going for a glorious 4th at the Bristol Bike Fest...

I had not ridden Bike Fest before but was assured that it was always dry and full of fast flowing single track. It was with some surprise when travelling up the M5 to the start of the event that I had to pull over as it was raining too hard to see out of the windscreen.

The course was thick with mud, slippery tree roots, dangerous woodwork and fallen riders. I considered the course whilst sliding sideways at speed and listening to the screams of injured comrades and decided that I loved it.

I rode in the male pair category with ‘Welsh Rich’ which meant that I was able to keep a quick pace in the knowledge that I had a cup of tea and an hours rest at the end of each my two laps stints. This also meant that I had some time on and off the course to go ‘Mule’ spotting. As a new ‘Mule’ I have not met any of my fellow crossbreeds (I looked up ‘Mule’ in the dictionary to see how they are created and discovered they are crossbreeds of a male donkey and a female horse. Unfortunately they are almost always sterile but as I have had a child already this is of little concern to me) so was keen to find some amongst the crowds. I found no one at all in the arena but came across three or four Mules out on the course so said hello as I passed and offered words of encouragement before my lungs gave out and I was forced to discontinue verbal communications.

Eleven and half hours after the gun had sounded Rich and I crossed the line place with time for one more lap. We checked the competition and having noted the gap to the next pair decided to forgo the glory lap and eat chips instead leaving us in 4th position. A quick perusal of the results showed the Mule Bar team had finished 8th in their category and I admit to feeling a little pride in that despite contributing nothing to the achievement. Well done guys.


St Jean D’Aulps cyclo sportive race

Two Mules looking suitably nervous pre-race....