- Cycling News
April 14, 2006, 1:00 BST,
April 22, 2009, 20:31 BST
It is time for Plan B. Im back to full-time racing status. Welcome to decade three. I've applied...
It is time for Plan B. Im back to full-time racing status. Welcome to decade three. I've applied for a couple of coaching positions in recent years and just missed out on a couple, but seriously, with that 20/20 thing going on, Im glad. I was out of commission for a lot of the 2005 season and I missed it.
Sure I did some 'cross this fall in Oregon and I raced Tazzy (Tasmanian Christmas Carnivals) again but I was never really in shape. I even won some races in my poor condition. I had to dig deep and pull them out of my toes. This fall, I was working with this massage therapist that ended up being psychotic and practising without a license. She did wonders for my knees - not.
No matter, she got busted for her illegal work so she wont be doing much damage to anyone in the near future. Im out a bunch of money because I paid for tons of work in advance but Ill just chalk it up as a big mistake and be much more careful next time with my cash flow. Everyone gets taken advantage of at sometime in their lives so here was one time for me.
Karma is a big time force to be reckoned with so I am sure things will balance out. I have made a conscious effort to change my Karma as of late and it is paying off. Since Rebecca Twigg's birthday, March 26, my luck has changed for the good.
On that day, I decided that the hidden covert agendas and the crazy like Beyonce maneuvers I was pulling had to stop and I needed to get focused. It is cool to live for the moment but it doesnt get you too far down the road of life. I feel like a huge burden has been lifted off my chest and I am ready to pay the dues. I have had zippo problems with my back and my knees. I have also have had awesome weather here in dirty Durango since returning. I have been riding up the passes every day and I am responding to training in a very positive way. I better because the T-town season starts in eight weeks. Its funny how casting evil out of your heart can make every day brighter and more minty fresh. I am now studying under the guidance of the monk, Sha-Ma-Lama-Ding-Dong.
Party people have asked me about Northwestern Mortgage and what happened. All I can really say is that there were many conflicts and crazy thingys that made life rough. We had some major success, though. All of my elite boys and girl have moved on forward in a direction that they are all very happy with. I am totally cool with the fact that NWM became a platform for some of our riders to reach the next level.
Josh Kerhog is a brand new daddy and racing for Specialized now. He is currently at my house with baby and his babys mama (aka his wife, Kara) helping me unload my unused cycling parts on eBay. Mike Fried-Ham is riding for TIAA-CREF and he seems happy. Becky Conzelman is having a baby girl this June so she is out of commission in a very happy way. Gui G Money has toned it down a bit because he does the Pro Snowboarder thing and I just heard he landed a big skater contract with Independent. Big Bad Bobby Lea is racing for the new US Super Power Team, Toyota United Pro Cycling. He is currently at track world's and ready to kick some pirate treasure (booty) in the scratch race there. He had an excellent finish at the Sydney Track World Cup - fourth in that event. That's the best US finish from anyone other than Colby P and myself in that event. It should be a blast racing Madisons with him this year. OK, I better get into the secret plan now.
The secret plan is for me to get back into super shape by October to do the time standard and win a bunch of national titles again. During this climb back to the top of the ladder, I plan on getting my crew to where they want to be too. I have a bunch of juniors, and some of them will go to junior world's this year - I'm confident of that. Others are targeting elite nationals with me and collegiate nationals.
I was planning on going to worlds with Bobby this year (this week) but I'm busy moving back to T-town for the summer. I am pissed that I am missing it. It was super cool to prepare him for the Sydney World Cup. Part two of the plan is to secure enough sponsorship for my Fuji/Salamander Cycling Team to become a pro track team before the world cups this fall.
You see, I have a bunch of young riders that are going to need to get up into those events soon. The NWM thing happened too quickly and there were too many conflicts. The core is solid now and I have tonnes of confidence in Pat Marzi and Bill Short. UCI points are now critical to getting start positions for world's and I wouldnt be surprised if USAC started using them for selection, so its best to acquire points whenever possible.
After my massive win at the Rosebery Carnival scratch race in mid January, I had to make a big decision. My back was not doing so flash, my left knee was hurting on every stroke and US track nationals were 10 months away. It was a hard decision but I decided to take a couple of months off. I needed to heal. I already mentioned that even though I had some fun this fall, it was really a waste of time in retrospect. I didnt heal, actually hurt my knees more and I spent too much money on garbage.
Some good came of it, though. The town bicycle of Portland suggested that I use the fizi:k Aliante saddle instead of the Pave. She was right, my back is much happier with that puppy. On the Pave, I sit way crooked and everyone comments when they ride behind me. Ive only done 14 million laps around velodromes so I think being a little off centre is acceptable. My new carbon Fuji bike rules and I have named her Almighty Mandy. Somerville is seven weeks away and Im hoping that she goes fast on that day.
As I said before, my training has been solid for the past ten days and Im very happy. Im in no pain and not as bad as I thought I might be. I have done every ride in Durango 72,000 times so I know where I should be every minute. Ive been eating so much after training that I sometimes feel like Im pregnant ... with Joshs baby here, sometimes I begin to wonder about that. I am so happy that Im not a chick. I cant get that 'Aliens' scene out of my head. You know the one where that evil little dragon thingy bob busts out of that dude's stomach? That's all I would think about if I was carrying a baby. Hopefully modern medicine wont allow this to happen for men in the near future.
The target list goes as follows:
Bobby at track worlds,
Erica at collegiate natz,
Everyone and their Mom at Somerville and the T-town summer
Possibly the Alpenrose 6-day,
Madison Cup with Bobby,
US elite road natz,
Junior track natz,
US elite crit natz,
USAC time standard,
Collegiate track natz,
Hopefully the elite racers of the US vote me on to the Board of Directors for USAC,
US elite track natz,
More rule changes with the Board of Trustees and then some World Cups.
After all that is tackled, Ill head back to Tazzy and try to get that Latrobe win. That's the last one I need. The other option that has been talked about is starting another Team in Tazzy like I have here in the States. I've thought about spending six months in the States and six months in Tazzy for a while now. They have so much talent there that it would be a lot of fun. We just need to find some backers there to fund that kind of program.
If it's pulled off, an incredible exchange program could be established and I could avoid winter forever. The track world's in 2007 are in Majorca, Spain. Ive been there before for collegiate world's in 1991 so it would be nice to go back. Im sorry people, Im not done yet ... winning that scratch race in Launceston this last December got me hungry again.
Plus, I have too much fun racing with dudes like Big Bad Benny K, Todd the Terror Wilksch, Darren D-Rex Young, Matt Gossome, Christian Later-man and all the rest of the chicken hawks of the track. I only have a couple years left that I can hold off the youth of the sport. I am 29 for the 8th year in a row so it is just a matter of time before a certain special someone retires me - guess who - but when that happens I will smile and watch him rock out. You never know, though. Danny Clark and Kent Bostick had pretty amazing years when they were 42. Someone will give me a cool job before I get that old though, I hope.
Lastly, here is a lesson for the kids ... were going to end each diary with useful racing tip. This one is LOOKS CAN BE DECEIVING. Tazzy is a perfect example of this. In Tazzy, I have been fooled by many a rider that looks super fit and awesome on his bike but when it comes time to go, sometimes he goes nowhere. Vice versa, other dudes or dudettes have looked like hell on their bikes and have even had hairy legs and stuff and made me look really dumb because I underestimated them.
In Tazzy, riders are ranked by numbers. My suggestion is to sit on someone with a low number regardless of looks. Take a hint from wildlife; a squirrel may look very cute and cuddly but just because it is, doesnt stop it from being a rodent. Rodents are vermin, so be careful. Looks can be deceiving and beauty is only skin deep. Who knows what's inside? You have to respect first and find out just like Ali G.
- Cycling News
April 13, 2006, 1:00 BST,
April 21, 2009, 11:55 BST
OK, I want to see a show of hands of who saw the movie "The Run Down" with the Rock and Shawn...
OK, I want to see a show of hands of who saw the movie "The Run Down" with the Rock and Shawn William Scott. I saw it. It wasn't so fresh and minty but it had Christopher Walken in it so you have to give it a look. Anyways, I chose this for my title cause I have not written in forever, and I thought I would give you a run down to catch up and then be a good little boy and never fall behind again.
Post World Cup Syndrome
The month is November and I have just come back from the Moscow World Cup. I am super psyched cause I won the Scratch Race in excellent choreography. Problem is I am so far behind in school that I think I am going to fail one of these classes and not graduate next month. I sleep entire plane rides, so studying does not occur. I am too busy catching up with other bikers at World Cups that reading is not a fundamental. This blows the baloney pony cause I really needed to get my booty down to Tucson for their stellar bike swap and unload my used junk, but I had to pass on it and read and make up for lost time.
After I catch up a bit, I decide to do the El Tour de Tucson with no endurance in my legs. I haven't gone for an endurance ride in like six months but hey, I am good at faking the funk. Ready, set, go and we're off. Long story short, I get in the winning break but have no confidence in my endurance so I don't attack early. The break was off for the last 100km so I was scared of falling to pieces but when it came down to the last 30km, I was doing most of the work. It was a direct head wind so attacks were easily snuffed. I thought I could win in a sprint with these dudes; there were four of us but it was down to three at the end. But Dirty Derek Wilkerson smoked me and I had to take second for my third year in a row. They need to change the course direction back to the original way. I have three seconds this way and three firsts the other way. Guess which way I like?
Now you have to know I have fallen further behind in school with that trip. Tucson is a constant dance party. I have to give a shout out to Bison Witches, Heart Five and Congress. They all rule. I also couldn't pass up the opportunity to see the Korn concert with my buddy Steve. I am so far behind!!! I have had fun though.
I get back to school and my professors are just getting annoyed with me. I am the old crusty dude who likes to bike. I show them all the Disco Italiano Moves I learned in Tucson, but they are not impressed.
The weather turns totally to s***house in Dirty Durango and I can't Mt Bike anymore (my new secret training weapon). I can't stand this so I say "Peace" to all the homees and their shorties in Double D and head to Tucson for a long weekend in the beginning of December. Things are cool and I have plans to work hard like a Sheep Dog in New Zealand but the weather HATES me and turns to poo. It never rains in Tucson but it does this weekend just for me. I have four days to train hard and eat and write, and all I end up doing is secret squirrel studying in my room at the Congress for about five hours a day. Hey, it was some great studying, but I wish I could have rode my bike a little more.
Finals have arrived and I have prepared enough to know that I am safe to graduate. I bust out my last exam and jump in my car and head straight for the airport. I'm off to Tasmania. Seriously, from class to the airport to Tasmania, that is the time constraints I have been under.
Tasmania is where I want to live
I have been to Tazzy a bunch of times; I think eight, to be exact. I love it there. My trip over went smooth but I forgot to mention before that our custom track frame builder's Dad died in a plane crash two weeks before my departure so his life was turned upside down and he had to deal with an immense amount of sorrow. Nothing can prepare you for a tragedy like that. All of our hearts went out to Mike. Even though he was going through such a tough time, he still got out our first batch of bikes to us in time for the Christmas Carnivals. Thank you, Mike. I know it wasn't easy.
Deda got us our stuff before our departure to the land of devils and so did Zipp to a lesser extent. We were in a little bit of a rush to get all our jazz together but we pulled it off. The UCI switching Track to the winter has caused a bunch of equipment problems. It is going to be difficult every year to get things organized in time.
Anyways, Booby Lee Press On Nails won the Roseberry Wheel. I won Launceston in fabulous fashion (not really, but I was uber happy cause I had never won it before). And Mike "I killed a Sheep with my bare hands" Friedman won the Hobart Wheel. Gui had success on the road and Josh made out with about 400 chicks (he won the lightning handicap at Hobart and the Tasmanian Kilo Challenge too).
Things were fine for me until Devonport hit. I had just won the Moscow World Cup the month before, graduated from Fort Lewis a fortnight before, and won Launceston the day before, but hell was looking to hit me in the ball bag hard. She did. After the first night at Devonport, I drove from D town to Launceston to pick up Tonsil Hockeyman (Becky Conzelman) at the airport. I carried most of the bags for her and busted my ass back up to D town. There after the long car ride, I had to deal with picking up other heavy stuff. Long story short (again), this jerk made me move my car from where I parked it. To do so I had to move some rollers. I picked them up in a funny way and COMPLETELY BLEW MY BACK OUT. That hasn't happened to me in years. That screwed the rest of my Carnivals. It takes over a week for the nerves to relax enough to let me even walk straight. Oh well, I'll fake it, and I did for the rest of the Carnivals up until St Helens.
So after about two weeks, my back agrees to play with me nice again and I ride like a Black Swan and win the Scratch Race and get second in the Wheel behind Dirty Stinky Darren Young. He is a wily little dude and has been known to Moose Hunt. I have witnessed him stalk and trap prey even when their older siblings are about. Anyhow, I feel like I am coming up strong again BUT...BIG BUT - my backy poo decides to blow out again the next week just to show me that she rules the schools and doesn't want to ride well at the Sydney World Cup. Hey, such is life. I had rode super flash from about the end of July to the end of December. I am an old crusty dude. My pectoral muscles can only be so pretty for so long before they go concave again for the winter. At my age, your good form goes into hibernation from time to time. You have to accept that and embrace it. I prefer to make love to it, not war.
Sorry, I will get a lot of crap from people for skipping a bunch of cool incidents that happened in Tazzy over their summer but hey, this is a "run down" and that means facts only. We should treat Tazzy like Vegas. "What happens in Vegas/Tazzy, stays in Vegas/Tazzy." That is the motto. I am just merely a witness and keeper of secrets. It is my retirement fund. I need something to fall back on after biking. I will give a special shout out to Kenny, Clay, Josh II and Emma though. I should give out more but the are the Fantastic Four.
OK, my dudes come back from the Australian Madison with mixed results. Booby and Gui got strip searched by an Aussie Rules Football team and Mike and Josh finished a respectable fourth on the Top 40 count down.
We are trying to get ready for breaking the USAC time standard but Josh is starting to have a tough time even making out with one chick at a time now. Something is wrong with this chick magnet.
One week before the Sydney World Cup, my little boyz do a test run. They go 4:22 and finish together. Not bad, they didn't have helmet covers or front discs. I really thought they would do the time standard in Sydney with more rest and better equipment.
World Cup action begins in Sydney. We've got our new wheels, we have helmet covers and we have eased on the training. Things should go good but they go bad. I have nothing, my back is frozen and I barely get top 10 finishes. Becky jumps the starting gate and ruins her ride. My Toilet Paper (Team Pursuit) Squad misses getting fifth by .1 of a second and misses the time standard by 2.2 seconds. This means their hard work counts for nothing. One tenth of a second faster and they would be allowed to race Worlds but they didn't do it so USAC gives them the big flick and says, "go home, you aren't worth any support right now". See, I have a problem with this, because they are under 23s why not give them a positive gesture and let them race? So it will cost a few extra bucks, big deal. They waste money all the time - riders that have never ridden the track before camps. These kids might actually do something in the future. They didn't handle it the way I would have, but maybe that is why I am not always the flavour of the month in the system - it comes down to morals, ethics and beliefs to me.
Anyway, Josh isn't riding so well, and he has the signs of Epstein Barr, and guess what? I have him get tested and that is exactly what he has. The man gets almost a three month vacation to get rid of that crazy thing. I caught it once in 1995 and ditched it after nine weeks, so hopefully Josh can kick her to the curb in 12. Because Brad Huff is in school and doesn't want a ride off with Booby, Mr Bruce Lee gets to race the pursuit at Worlds. Becky has recovered from jumping the gate early in Sydney and is training well.
So, what do we have thus far in Part I of The Run Down
1. Get back from Russia and now I'm way behind in school.
2. Get second in El Tour de Tucson for the third time in a row.
3. Weather turns to poo in Durango so I head south to Tucson and the poo follows me there. Squirrel study sessions are the best and I feel good about the finals coming up but the riding is on the down.
4. Our frame builder's Dad dies in a plane crash. We struggle to get all the equipment we need for our Tazzy trip in time.
5. I win Launceston and then blow my back out twice.
6. All of us ride bad in Sydney.
7. Josh has a kissing disease, Gui and Mike get the boot, Becky is looking better every day, Booby gets the nod to ride the Pursuit at Worlds and I don't own a real back.
Part II coming to a computer near you soon...
- Jame Carney
Welcome to the Jame Carney diary for 2006. One of the US' longest-serving domestic pro riders, Carney is a track endurance specialist and coach of several other American track specialists. He has ridden for the Shaklee, Prime Alliance and Northwestern Mortgage teams, and this year he is acting like LL Cool J and asking you not to call it a comeback. He’s been here for decades. In 2005, he herniated two discs in his back and screwed up both his knees but swears to LBJ that things are all good and he is ready to battle on. Follow Jame's lively accounts of his adventures as he races/coaches/manages all over the world and possibly in a neighborhood near you, exclusively on Cyclingnews.com.