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Rhymes with "carriage"

December 5, 2007

It is amazing how fast a season can fly by. It was a already a year ago that I announced my engagement to my now wife, Tracy. What was meant to be an end of the season invitation to the Trek headquarters from the legendary Zap Espinoza, turned out to be a life changing 72 hours.

For my team-mate and best man "Rad" Ross Schnell and I, the weekend was going to be a celebration after a hard earned season and a chance to get things lined up for the upcoming year. Our conversations on the plane ride to Wisconsin centered around how good if felt to be single and free. Nothing but our bikes and travels to occupy our time. Life was simple, life was good.

Once arriving at Trek's homeland, we were greeted by Zap and his gracious family, given the VIP tour of Trek's headquarters, and we socialized with Trek dealers from all over the country. Free food, free housing, great company... Life was good.

Bike racers are simple creatures, especially mountain bikers. In an effort to prolong the real world for as long as possible, we will literally work for next to nothing for the chance to wake up in the morning and simply ride. If wealth was measured by the amount of free time one has, then as a cyclist, I was one of the richest men alive.

The weekend quickly began to follow a underlying theme of serendipity. One moment after the next left Ross and I looking at one another in disbelief. Maybe it was the hands on demolition in the Bontrager Wheel Testing Area, or maybe it was the tour of Zap's house with his room filled with old memorabilia covering the walls (including Tomac's actual World Championship bike with drops), or maybe it was perfect trails that littered Trek's headquarters. Eat, sleep and ride were our instructions... Life was good.

With all this excitement, the farthest thing, from either of our minds was settling down.

Well it turns out some of life's most important decisions can be made at closing time. Yes it was 2:00 am, and yes I did have a couple alcoholic beverages in my system but at the moment I saw her from across the room, my decision making skills were not impaired – I "knew".

A whirlwind of thoughts and emotions followed but I was already prepared to pull the trigger and get down on one knee. Her name was Tracy, and I would have asked her to marry me on day two but I was advised to "Wait another day" by Zap and company.

So I did wait, but for only another 24 hours. Now fast forward a year and change. As of September 14th, I was a married man. It's crazy how fast things change. I have gone from vagabond mountain biker to responsible married man in only a year. Life isn't quite as simple, but it is still good. In fact, it's great!

Best of Rides,
Nick Martin

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27-year-old mountain bike racer Nick Martin specializes in cross country and endurance off-road events. The Boulder, Colorado, resident aims for a breakthrough year in 2007. In his sights are top 10 finishes at individual races and the overall in the US National Mountain Bike Series (NMBS). While cross country races will be his primary focus, Martin will also be on the line at short track events. The Team Trek VW racer gave up everything three years ago to capitalize on the opportunity to go pro. Ever since, he has been building confidence and making a name for himself on the national scene. In 2006, Martin finished 14th overall in the NMBS series and took fifth at the 24 Hours of Moab. When not on his bike, he's busy honing his writing and photography skills.