Friday, October 2, 2009

Finally Truly Ready for Cross Season

After last weekend's attempt to shake out the legs a little bit at the Boulder CX Series #1 and Cross at the River I knew my bike had a significant amount of work that needed to be done in order for me to be really ready for cx season.

First step: get rid of that silly shimano shifting. I've been running sram shifting on my mountain bikes for about 3 years now and have found that when the going gets tough Sram always comes to the rescue. So with my sram rival shifters from the destroyed road bike and a new force derailleur I was ready to roll.

Second Step: drop the double front chainring. Since the end of August I've been running a single ring setup on the mountain bike and have found that it is far superior to any system that requires shifting in the front. Front shifts, at least as far as I'm concerned, are always super sloppy and definitely kill momentum when making fast changes from downhills to uphills. With a double guard set up, extra long chainring bolts and spacers, and a 42 tooth single ring I was rolling (granted it did take some thought on how to make the double ring actually fit my frame, but I solved it and am stoked now).

Third Step: New saddle and seat post. With my physical proportions I am forced to ride straight seat posts (i.e. no set back) and 100 mm stems on all of my bikes. It allows for better comfort and my arms to not have to completely lock just to reach the bars. Plus, as many racers are, I am picky about my saddles. For me WTB saddles fit the bill and I have found that the silverado is by far my favorite, so I tossed one on for good measure.

Final Step: New bar tape and brake/shift lever hoods. With some nice white fi'zik bar tape and hudz clear sram brake/shift hoods I was ready to go with some awesome matching technique (it's not how fast you are, but how fly you look, man I wish this were true).

Well here's the final product:I apologize for the grainy image, my camera is still not into my macbook, so....

If you're in the boulder area you can see me ripping around the course on this in our brand new Pioneer Racing skinsuits on October 11th and 17th at the Boulder CX Series #2 and the Valmont Bike Park Ground Break Party/Cross race. Anyone and everyone should come out to these events with beer tents and good times to be had by all!

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