Saturday, May 21, 2011

I Placed Second! last

I attended the race to meet some fanatics and got much more than that! This is me in a Velomobile. It's made of the same stuff kayaks are made from. Super durable and comes in 11 different colors. The dealer brought this one and was nice enough to let me to take it around for a spin.

Here's a little bit of marketing for him. Visit his site and check out what he's got to offer. He's a super nice guy - very easy to get along with.

There were about 29 riders a couple families and friends came, but people came alone for the most part. I guess it's a bent thing. We're kinda weirdos and don't have much company in that respect. Much like magicians I guess. The announcer made a comment about how socially awkward we are. Hahah.

The track is 0.2 miles. Pretty short. But when you're going around 8 laps like I did for the "trike's only" event, it feels much longer. I placed last in that event. Ouch. I'm happy that one of the guys who beat me was riding a Catrike 700 - a white one! Looked great!

Rick pretty much built this thing! He bought the clear cover, but everything else was built with his two hands! That's a grey Catrike Speed hiding in that fairing.

Meet Paul and his faired recumbent. It's got side entry so he can hope into this thing w/o the help of a crew. He took this exact model across the country. Over the three month ride, he covered 50-90 miles/day! That was 11 years ago but still lots to be proud of.

The Mango was one of the favorites. Greg rides this Velomobile as a commuter! Yup, that means every day! The Milkman was also a first time visitor to the velodrome. Covered 57 laps in 30 minutes.

This is what an 80T chainring looks like. The owner built this whole thing himself including the welds. A chainring that big has to be custom built, right? Yup, he built that too! There were a of homebuilts at the race.

I didn't get a chance to chat much with this Cal Poly team, but they had a whole crew representing their HPV group. Here's the front half of the fairing.

And here's the other half. This is the reason why they brought a whole crew. They need one rider, one launcher and about 3 people to catch the Velomobile when it stops at the end of each event.

This is what happens when your derailleur catches onto a spoke and rips apart. As we were watching the 30 minute race, we heard a huge crash from behind us.

Cal Poly's HPV crashed big time. The rider came out unscathed....from what I saw. Here they are trying to straighten the chain out w/o taking it apart. It's harder than it looks. How many Cal Poly kids will it take to do it?

This guy pretty much beat everyone's butt. He's faster than the Velomobiles!

A bit about Velomobiles. They are the jellybean looking things with full fairings where you typically only see the rider's head or sometimes just their eyes. The surprising thing is that even though these things weigh 55-65lbs, the reduction in air resistance or improvement in aerodynamics offsets the increase in weight. These things look like they're hitting the upper 30's in mph. Crazy fast.

This is the start of the elimination round where the last place person in each lap is disqualified until there's on man standing - yes, all the riders are men. No women recumbent riders came to the event. Lots of our wives decided to stay home or do their own thing, as did mine.

I was impressed at the shutter speed of the Kodak Sportplay camera. They're catching these images w/o blur!

Here's one of Cal Poly's rides - the one that suffered a gruesome death at the end (the bent - not the rider).

Here's one of their other ones.

The famous Mango! One guy called it a banana. This thing was fast. It better be for $8,000. Looks really slick. The lines are cut nice on this one. I wish I had a shot of the rear.

The colors were just too cool to not take a pic. I brought my naked trike over for a snapshot. It was a beautiful day!

I should have taken more still photos. It's such a pain pulling them from videos due to the software I use. I would have to convert the video to another format and then make stills. Such a headache. I'll do it later, but not tonight. There was a Catrike 700 out there worth mentioning. It was white too! The rider was cool.

There was a lot of downtime in between races. There were a few surprise events: 60 and older event, 6'-0" and taller event. This gave me some time to take some shots with the others.

The shape of that Velomobile is nice, huh? I like how the rear is carved out like that.


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