Monday, April 16, 2012

Battenkill. Honest review of No Tubes wheels.

I woke up at 630 am with my legs pounding, so I might as well use the time. A week ago I got an email from Geronimo seeing if I wanted to guest ride with the Stans No Tubes/AXA team for Battenkill. Why not? I made my plans and made the trip up.

Geronimo lent me a set of the Alpha Team Wheels. More on that later. This was nice because it left out the week before stress about which tires to run, and the self blame afterward if the wrong choice was made.

Saturday's Pro/1 race was uneventful. It was predictable and I am mad at myself (this is rare after a race) but I know that I could have pulled out a result, and I know that I could have. I wasted a bit of energy early and was conscious of it while doing so. Ended up in a group sprinting for the top 10, did some team work and ended up at the back of that group in 22nd or so. Such is life.

Sunday was insane. it was like 30+mph from the gun and just pegged for the first hour. I found it hard to stay at the front as usual. There were dudes letting gaps open 10 miles in. The dirt sections were like Vietnam. Dozens of guys on the side of the road, screaming, dust, crashes, rocks flying. It was ridiculous.

At one point like 50 miles in Kelly went to the front and pegged it. I was in and out of the caravan until the end of the first lap, and that was my day. Props to farbaugh with a top 20. Sick.

Solo 9 hour drive home. Soundtrack: Crimpshrine, Hot Water Music, Danzig, Petrograd, Wait Wait dont tell me, Joy Division, Jawbreaker, Sloppy Seconds, Tragedy, His Hero is gone, Leatherface, Bad Religion. The trip home flew by. There is something cleansing about singing for 9 hours straight while driving.

So this is an honest review of the Stans wheels / Hutchinson tires that I raced both days this weekend. I was skeptical of road tubeless. It is weird. I love Stans mountain bike stuff. It is probably up there with suspension and disc brakes as far as innovation go. The road thing scared me a bit for some reason. We put my front tire at 65psi and the rear at 67. yes 65/67. Bottom line is that they rode great. The feel is like riding cross tubulars. Not road tubulars which are always pumped up super high and kind of hard, but like when on a cross tubular you absorb the bumps. It is pretty cool. During the race Sunday, I did hit a rock that was big enough to dent the braking surface, my hands almost slipped off the bars and I leaned back assuming a flat. . However the tire did not lose air. By the end of the weekend I was asking what I could get a pair for.

Host housing was a 3 bed cabin with a full bathroom.

Real maple syrup at diners!

1 comment:

BobkeStrut said...

I was a passenger in the BMC-Hincapie Development Team car and I believe I saw you off the bike and running briefly on a steep climb on one of the late dirt sectors on the opening lap. Did not look pleasant!

It was nice to finally meet in person and hopefully our paths will cross again in the future.