Tuesday, June 7

Reflections and respections

Am I bummed about getting third place at the Trans-Sylvania Epic?


Rich Straub is a honch local rider. He won the first two stages and came in second on every other stage the rest of the week.

Was he a large man? Here he is standing next to a 6'4" Barry Wicks:

Morgan Miller (who is equivalent to .5 Barry Wicks), 2nd overall in the SS category, came on late in the game, but won stages 4-7... won them absolutely outright.

Losing to those two guys makes all the sense in the world. I mean, look how I did in comparison:

Stage 1 ~ 3rd
Stage 2 ~ 2nd
Stage 3 ~ 1st
Stage 4 ~ 5th
Stage 5 ~ 4th
Stage 6 ~ 3rd
Stage 7 ~ 4th

As always, I was consistently inconsistent. Not the hallmark of a champion, but a guy who was lucky to get on the podium with those two standout athletes.

Obviously, as one could tell from my dry race reports, I raced so hard I temporarily lost my sense of humor. Luckily, while catching up on my favorite bloggers, I found the ability to laugh again. I was checking out Missouri's plea for bloggers contest votes (and his attempts to win over the stitching community by having his girlfriend call me "whiny") from last week and came across this comment on his post:

The things I hear most when I meet new people at races who have read my blog are:

"I thought you'd be taller."

"I thought you'd be faster."

"I thought you'd be a total asshole."

I'm sorry to disappoint people. I didn't drink coffee till my mid-thirties just so I wouldn't stunt any last minute growth spurts. I thought I'd be faster too, what without any hair on my head to slow me down, and I'd like to think I'm just a little bit of an asshole.

Where am I going with this?

I had an interesting conversation with fellow 24 Hour Solo Single Speed World Champion Grig Martin at the campfire Saturday night. We talked about the thrill of winning and how it's not as thrilling as it's made out to be. We're both happier for our friends when they win than we are happy for ourselves when we take that top step. How you win is more important than the win itself, which is why I was stoked for Straub the more I got to know him throughout the week, just as I am happy that my friend Montana (his real name) is getting to race the Pisgah Mountain Bike Stage race this fall instead of me. I've won plenty of contests, and I've lost a whole lot more, but being an old, grumpy man seeing someone like him win? My heart grew three sizes that day.

Sarcastic? Yes.

Jerk? Maybe.

Upset over everything? Fuck that guy.

Cory Rimmer seems stoked to be going:

Also a young man, I'm sure he'll make the most of it. Old, bitter, washed-up racers probably shouldn't go to the race anyways. We'll just screw up the vibe, and make fun of young people on our geriatric blogs.

BTW: I was not confused. It's called "Alzheimer's."

Respect. I have some for both of you... but you'll have to share it. I'm a little short of that commodity after last week.

This does not mean that I have forgiven Alan Jacoby for stealing the Topeak Ergon contest from under me. It's not that I'm still pissed off, it's just that I can't get over that big headgear fetish of his.

Don't get me wrong. I'm proud of my one stage win last week, but not because there were no other single speeders ahead of me. I'm pleased with my performance because it's been a long time since I pushed myself that hard for that long. I persevered through a few hardships, and kept on pedaling when my legs were screaming out "Please stop, if you would." (my legs are very polite). I'm also proud that I turned my worst stage from 2010 into my best stage in 2011. Proud, but still awkward on the podium.

I am not a "winner." I'm just a guy who wins bike races every once and awhile.

More TSE tomorrow... maybe.


Kyle from Florida said...

Ha! Welcome back Dicky!
You forgot to mention you shop in grocery stores like the rest of us mortals!

wv: hospowl

The sound you make when you get third place.....

garthpro said...

IT's cool, I still love you DICKIE!

Luis G. said...

Well, you're not a TOTAL asshole...

Anonymous said...

... but you'll always be a DICK

Montana said...

What a heartfelt post. Now I feel all dirty. And that was my girlfriend's mother that called you whinny. The stitchers are a very powerful demographic.

Jason said...

One of the first TSE posts on the WWW. where there wasn't a pic of Garth mounting someone/thing. Not sure what to think.

Looks like you had a great race to me. Raced hard, drank a lot of beer, hung out with friends, rode your bike lots. Sounds like the perfect stage race to me.

Shane S. said...

I was pulling for you out there man! Great job! There is always a spoiler at every race, and sometimes YOU get to be the spoiler. I'm there next year for sure and prolly get my ass kicked, it just sounds too fun!!

Tomi said...

damn, and here I thought I had the bitter grumpy old racer thing all to myself....see you in July.

Dan said...

stirring shit up on the interweb yet again...fuking whiner.

Mostly I like the fact that she linked to the ball rolling picture, my mom would NEVER do that!!!

Anonymous said...

if it makes you feel any better, i always thought you'd be shorter.

wv: ruesm. the experience of rue-ing, as in: I had many ruesms over my race performance.

Adventure Nell said...

Anyone who publishes mean posts and won't put a sweaty donkey b*lls for a living. Congrats on Third and on to the next!


JoeT said...

Here is another Dickism for you:
Overheard a very attractive young woman comment to you at PMBAR, "Your a lot nicer than I thought you would be".
Nicer! Haha!

nathan shearer said...

I thought you would be much more obnoxious. What a disappointment. I still have to carry that torch solo.