Monday, November 30, 2009

AyUp Special....

Kona 22:03 Hour

Reality is, I don't know where to start. It was a huge weekend. Involved everything from planes, car breakdown, supermarkets, pet dogs, Frisbee to the back of the head, late night hot dogs, mud, rain, pain and being awake for 39 hours

I will start with the arrival at the race-site in Forrest, home of the Kona 24 hour. We got there at lunchtime on Friday, and I quickly found Ben ready to set up our home. We quickly constructed out 'fort' and went for a practice lap. The course was a solid mix of fantastic single-track, with painless fire-road climbs. At this point it was hot with a dry course, perfect for a QLD Lad.
We went back to camp, showered, had some dinner and settled in with some beers. Then the rain came, then the storm and then the torrential thunderstorm that ruined a good few campsites.
Everything pointed to a very wet and muddy 24 Hour race.
Our plan was simple and aggressive. Smash out fast laps till we are a lap up, then smash out quick night laps to get a lap up, and if it rains we were to ride faster/harder to get more time up. Fun as going to be interpretation as 'hurt yourself badly'.

H-Ball (AyUp/Yeti Australia Manager) was set to look after us in his 'no bulls*£t and ride faster' management technique. He would look after us, give us time checks, make sure we ate, were warm and was the critical link in exchanging communication between Ben and Myself. Take very careful note of his last task.

Ben drew the short straw (not that there were straws) for the first lap. He donned his mega-fast YETI skinsuit for the first lap, and was keen to put distance into our competition early. He went hard, and we were in 6th place overall for the first lap. I took over for the second lap (we were going to alternate each lap, no doubles) and we got into 5th place.

Next lap Ben went out and we were up to 4th, and with my next lap we got in 3rd place Overall. We were having fun, despite the mud. At this point of time I had changed my clothes twice and had a shower. I only had 5 complete kits with me, and if it rained more I was going to be in for a long cold night.

Nighttime kicked in, and with 8 hours into our legs we settled into the race. With night meant we could bring out something special. AyUp had given us some of the latest lights, with upgraded technology. We both ran with a narrow on the helmet, and a medium on the bars. It was during the dark, when we stepped back into race mode. We punched out sub-48minute laps for the next 10 during the dark.
10 fast laps was enough to help secure our lead.
Sure we were cold, we were getting hungry and trying to keep on fluids was getting difficult. With the communication link between Ben and I handled by H-Ball, he was able to keep our spirits high. My stomach was killing me, so H-Ball would tell Ben I was still happy going lap for lap. Ben's knee were giving him trouble, so Dad would tell me Ben was looking good. It was this 'management technique' that kept our heads level, and our legs turning the pedals.

At Daybreak, we started to crunch the numbers. We were roughly 2.5 laps up on second place, but as we had not yet ridden the new 'Day Course 2' we didn't know how long those laps we going to take. We started the new laps and did 2 each at a solid pace. I finished my last lap at 9:10 and the 'team' sent out Ben for his final lap.

It would be the teams last one, despite Ben's desire for me to go out for another to 'even out the number of laps'. With that at 10:03am, Ben returned to the tent, and we had sealed up the race.
We sat looking like death, I had bloodshot eyes, and Ben could hardly stand. Still, we found the strength to find 2 beers, crack them open and enjoy the victory.

In the end we won the Mens Pairs with 27 laps in 22:03 hours, and as the race neared the 24-Hour mark we remained a lap clear over 2nd place. In good hands, we had done what we setout to do.

The Yeti’s (I was on my ASR Alloy, and Ben on his ASR-c) ran flawlessly. They were fantastic, and for the entire race we a great combination of comfort and speed. Out AyUp lights helped us win, simple as that. Our lap times at night were fast and consistent, as a result of a fantastic product.

Lastly, while Ben and I stood on the podium, the real champion was H-Ball. He orchestrated the chaos, and made the actual riding the easy bit.

Sunday, November 29, 2009


Kona 24 hour Male Pairs Winning team AyUp/Yeti Australia Renegades Of Funk.


Ben and I went hard early, stayed going hard in the the night and by for breakfast we were 3 hours ahead of 2nd place. We did one more 'buffer' lap and at 10am we finished, both so smashed it took all our combined energy to have a beer together.

HUGE thanks must got to H-Ball (AyUp/YETI Australia Team Manager) for keeping us two lads smashing out the laps. He worked as hard, if not harder than us. Not only did he look after us for the entire race, but then packed up and drove home.

Special thanks to Mel and Marnie, for putting up with us, feeding us and telling us to 'harden up' when we needed to be told.

AyUp....what can I say, look at our lap times at night. With AyUp lights turning dark into light, we maintained the same lap times (if not faster) at night.

YETI.....not one mechanical, and the bikes railed everything we threw at them. My ASR is so comfortable, I will be riding to work today. This bikes are the best combination of comfort and speed. Look for Ben and I to be steeping up to the new ASR-5 soon......

Thanks to everyone else who supported or cheered us on. This looks to be the start of a serious 24-Hour two man team from now on. Yes we hurt, but not once did we say we wouldn't do another one.....

Monday, November 16, 2009

We Couldn't Agree On A Name...

Officer 6 hour.

Mel and i teamed up as a mixed pair... Just for fun. So i dug out the 575 for some long travel racing.

On the start line it was all smiles then bam! we were off. I sat in 2nd for a bit then attacked on the aqueduct track. I the lead i finished lap one (with the fastest lap for the race) and headed out for lap 2.

I got challenged early but shut that down and rode around loving the trails to bring us in first overall after 2 laps.

We didn't stay in first overall but we did win our category. It sure was hot out there and tough toward the end of the race.
Everyone was enjoying themselves and it was a great day of racing...

Many thanks to the FTF volunteers who ran the event.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Chicken or Rooster?

UP..... steeper than it looks. GO!

Avoca Trail Building

This weekend was trail reconstruction time at Avoca, the home of the 2009 Marathon Nationals. Plenty of work to be done but the trail that was unearthed is worth it. With short notice it was a 2 man show, swingin fire rakes and cuttin wood...
Some slight redirections are still needed to get around the steeper/unridable climbs. So far so good.