kay tsui mom, cyclist, national champion - Spokes Magazine

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kay tsui mom, cyclist, national champion - Spokes Magazine

Serving Cyclists in the Mid-Atlantic States

AUGUST 2009

FREE

KAY TSUI

MOM,

CYCLIST,

NATIONAL

CHAMPION

IN THIS ISSUE [ WILLIAMSBURG + XTERRA & DEXTRO TRI’S + TICKETED CYCLISTS + MORE ]

www.spokesmagazine.com

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SEROTTA•MOOTS•PINARELLO•MASI•SCOTT•SALSA•GARY FISHER•ROCKY MOUNTAIN

Lutherville Bike Shop would like to welcome Eric Erkel,

a Serotta/SICI advanced fitter, to the Mid-Atlantic.

Eric has been involved with bicycle fitting since the age

of 16 and has helped thousands of cyclist get the most

out of their cycling experience. Eric will be leading a

team of four SICI bike fitters at Lutherville Bike Shop,

by advanced fitting techniques.

“Eric Erkel has been the Northwestʼs premier bike fitter

and will be a great asset to the Mid-Atlantic cycling

community.”

-Ben Serotta

Founder and CEO of Serotta Competition Bicycles


Lutherville Bike Shop is a FIT FIRST bike shop, meaning we believe the most important thing about

your bike is how it fits. Whether you are a road cyclist, triathlete, or mountain biker, the fitters at

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To schedule a fitting appointment call 410-583-8734 or send an email to luthervillebikes@aol.com.

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1544 York Road Lutherville, MD 21093 410-583-8734

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ON

COVER

THE

Kay Tsui, 59, of Fairfax, Va., dominated the National

Championships again this year. Photo by Neil Sandler

YESTERDAY, AFTER A 23 YEAR ABSENCE, I returned to

the scene of the crime. Or more accurately, I returned

to the place where the idea for the publication you

have in your hands germinated.

On a short, two-day work trip to San Francisco, the second

day I found myself with an afternoon to kill before

a red eye flight home. I hopped into my rental and

drove an hour south to Santa Cruz. It was the beach

side resort town where 23 years ago, on a solo bike/

camping tour of the California coast, I picked up a

copy of a publication called California Cyclist. When I

returned to D.C. back then I visited several bike stores

(most of which no longer exist!) and showed the store

owners copies of this left coast rag and asked if they’d

like and support (via advertising) something like this

for their own. Six months later, March 1987, the first

issue of Spokes Magazine rolled off the presses.

So now, here I was, nearly a quarter of a century later,

out biking in the Golden State for the first time since.

Matt Potter, owner of Santa Cruz’s popular bike shop

“The Spokesman” (how ironic, since many cyclists back

East also call me “the spokesman”) hooked me up with

a nice carbon road bike for the afternoon and off I

went to see what I remembered and perhaps to regain

an inkling of what drove me to start this publication. It

didn’t take long.

I quickly noticed a guy with a loaded touring bike

whose well worn frame was covered with travel stickers.

It turns out that the bike’s owner George Hawkins

actually lives in Santa Cruz. His appearance and that

of his bike was the result of a three year bike tour from

the top of Alaska to the southern most point in South

America. He’d actually written a book entitled

“A Bicycle Journey to the Bottom of the Americas.” We

chatted and I was enthralled with his stories.

A while later, a young couple, also on loaded touring

bikes, told me they were students at San Luis Obispo

out for a few day tour of the coast. Over the coming

hours, I saw dozens of such long distance travelers, and

hundreds of others out for a few hours, like me.

Something was happening here. I was getting infected

just like I did 23 years ago. Bikes and cyclists were

everywhere. Surfer kids carrying long boards down to

the local beach. Folks on bikes with panniers riding to

shop for groceries. Old codgers out for some fresh air.

Just like it was 23 years ago.

What was the tie that bonded all these cyclists together,

I asked myself back then. Wait a minute, “spokes,” they

all ride on spokes. There was THE common thread.

SPOKES, what a great name for a publication, I

thought. I couldn’t wait to get back East and see what

others with my passion for cycling thought of my idea

for a cycling publication to serve mid-Atlantic cyclists.

I didn’t allow the harsh reality of the news business

to deter me. The answers to questions like: how will

I do it, will anyone read it, who will write the stories,

who will sell the advertising, how will it get distributed,

never once dissuaded me. After all, the idea sounded

so promising.

My how time flies.

Happy trails,

Neil Sandler

Editor & Publisher

page 6

Touring • Racing • Off-Road

Recreation • Triathlon • Commuting

AUGUST 2009

SPOKES is published monthly eight times a year — monthly March

through September, plus one winter issue. It is available free of charge at

most area bicycle stores, fitness centers and related sporting establishments

throughout Maryland, Virginia, the District of Columbia, and parts

of Pennsylvania, Delaware and West Virginia.

Circulation: 30,000. Copyright© 2008 SPOKES.

All rights reserved. No reprinting without the publisher’s written permission.

Opinions expressed and facts presented are attributed to the respective

authors and not SPOKES. Editorial and photographic submissions are

welcome. Material can only be returned if it is accompanied by a selfaddressed,

stamped envelope. The publisher reserves the right to refuse

any advertising which may be inappropriate to the magazine’s purpose.

Editorial and Advertising Office:

SPOKES

EDITOR & PUBLISHER

5911 Jefferson Boulevard

Neil W. Sandler

Frederick, MD 21703

neil@spokesmagazine.com

Phone/Fax: (301) 371-5309

CALENDAR EDITOR

GRAPHIC DESIGN

Sonja P. Sandler

Studio 22

sonja@spokesmagazine.com

www.studio20two.com

www.spokesmagazine.com

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August 2009

5


KAY TSUI

MOM, CYCLIST,

NATIONAL CHAMPION

by REGINA SPALLONE

Kay Tsui, 59, of Fairfax, Virginia, may be one of the most unassuming cyclists you will ever

meet, all of 5-feet-1 - “and a quarter,” she’ll assert. She disappears among the crowd of

boisterous “roadies” on the popular Saturday morning Bicycle Place group ride out of Rock

Creek Park in Silver Spring, Md.

AT THE REST STOP, she takes out her lipstick and

touches up. “At this age, a girl needs a little color,”

she quips.

Beneath this sweet demeanor roars a lion? You’d better

believe it.

Kay Tsui is a national champion. Three times over.

Twice.

The 2009 USA Cycling Masters Road National

Championships, held June 28-July 4, in Louisville, Ky.,

brought out cyclists aged 30 and over to race for national

titles in a road race, a time trial, and a criterium.

Turning 60 in 2009 put Kay in the Women’s Masters

field (age 60-64), where she swept first place in all

three events. She finished the five-lap race along a

five-mile rolling course 1.5 bike lengths ahead of the

second place; she bested her nearest competitor by

more than a minute in the 20-kilometer individual

time trial; and she took the field in a dramatic sprint

to the line in the 19-mile, 39-lap criterium.

“Kay is an inspiration,” says Phil Young of Washington,

D.C., a friend and riding companion.

“You know what ‘an inspiration’ means?” Kay counters,

“It just means you’re old!”

A late start to great heights

Growing up in New Mexico, Kay showed some athletic

promise in junior high, but athletics were discouraged

in her household, as “not very ladylike.”

Kay dabbled in sports, primarily vicariously as a cheerleader.

There were not many sports available to her as

a young girl.

Upon moving to Virginia as an adult, Kay put a budding

nursing career on hold to raise a family. She

picked up running with neighborhood women after

her first child, born in 1977, but she never ran competitively

and never really loved the sport.

She raised three accomplished competitive swimmers—Emma,

Dave and Will—providing the abundant

encouragement she never got.

By 1998, the children were off to college and Kay had

no athletics to encourage but her own. With more

flexibility in her schedule, she happily gave up running

and got herself a hybrid bike.

“This just feels so great!” was Kay’s first reaction to

cycling. After a year on the hybrid, she tried a tiny

Bianchi road bike while on a trip to France—and that

was the end of the hybrid. Stateside, she bought a

steel Serotta road bike. Her one-hour morning ride

through her hilly neighborhood became a personal

training event as she pushed herself to ride it faster

and faster.

From 1998 to 2004, Kay rode with a group of women

in the Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C., but ultimately

wanted to go faster. She heard about a women’s

racing team, and thought it might be supportive

to someone just starting out racing. So on a Sunday in

July, she spoke to Evelyn Egizi, Artemis team coordinator,

to discuss the idea of racing, perhaps in a time

trail. Evelyn told her of an upcoming time trial and

then invited Kay to join her to pre-ride a road race

course on that Wednesday before a weekend race.

Jumping in with both feet

Kay did and found Evelyn to be very encouraging.

Then, just like that, a mere six days after calling

Evelyn, Kay found herself registered for her first ever

road race as a beginner in the Giro di Coppi, a challenging

course in Montgomery County, Md.

This first race terrified Kay. With no racing experience,

the pre-race information was mystifying and

many details were utterly foreign. Bring your trainer?

Kay asked, “Evelyn. What’s a trainer?” She thought it

was a person, and not a piece of equipment. Yellow

line rule? A neutral roll-out? What? Pedaling three

abreast to the start, someone called out “Artemis.

Don’t overlap wheel.” She was surprised that this was

directed to her, and she had no idea what it meant.

And yet, for her first race ever, Kay finished fifth!

6 August 2009


Three generations: Kay with her mother and daughter

A year round commitment

Training with HPC, Kay gets monthly schedules of workouts

that may focus on jumps - the ability to respond

fast to conditions in a race - or may be short, intense

drills, mock time trials, or long, sustained efforts.

Sue tweaks Kay’s work depending on how she

responds. The best thing about having a coach, says

Kay, is knowing when to push and when to rest. Kay

believes that many cyclists don’t push as hard as they

should when they do hard workouts, and they also

don’t rest like they should. The rest days are just as

important as the work days.

Kay’s typical week includes a few days in the gym,

where she focuses on stretching and core work, with

some weight training. Other days are spent on the

bike. The Saturday group rides with her cycling companions

give her the push she needs for those training

rides. Group riding has taught Kay the physics of

drafting, sprinting, and working together.

Kay knows she’s fortunate to have the time to dedicate

to such a schedule. She admits to taking for granted

feeling strong and fit, since it’s a big part of who she

KAY continued on p.8

Kay on a Sunday morning Bicycle Place training ride

“I think I collapsed in tears” after that race, she was so

relieved to be done. “I don’t think I slept for two or

three days” after, she was on such a high from the event.

Kay Tsui definitely got bit by the racing bug.

The next year she rode with Artemis, winning her first

1st place at a criterium in May 2005, while her mom,

visiting from New Mexico, watched. But at a road race

later that month, Kay crashed. She finished the race,

thinking “This race would be a lot easier if I didn’t

have a broken rib.” A visit to the hospital confirmed

a broken rib and a partially collapsed her lung. Kay

spent the night in the hospital pondering her 11th

place finish.

Feeling that road racing was too dangerous for a

woman her age, Kay went back to time trials or agecategory

races.

In 2006, Kay joined her cycling coach, Sue Hefler’s

team, Hefler Performance Coaching (HPC)/List. Sue

encouraged Kay to try for the Nationals, where Kay

would race in age categories. Kay agreed, thinking it

might be fun.

At those 2006 Nationals, Kay again felt overwhelmed

by her newbie status. At this event, her competition

included a world champion triathlete. Being so new,

Kay was one of the first to race in the time trial. Kay

came across the line, unaware of her result. Kay later

congratulated a breathless friend announcing her third

place. When the friend noted that the tri-champ finished

second, Kay said, “That’s great. Who got first?”

“You did!” she exclaimed. Kay was shocked. And

then she went on to sweep the criterium and the road

race, too.

August 2009

7


KAY continued from p.7

is. And cycling has played a big part in who she has

become. The physical demands of it agree with her.

The social aspects of it she finds refreshing. And the

identity it has created within her – beyond wife or

mother – but rather, Kay Tsui: cyclist, National champion

- has been liberating. What could be better?

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WILLIAMSBURG

by BRENDA RUBY bruby@verizon.net

VIRGINIA’S HISTORIC TRIANGLE

Living in an area where our local news IS the national news and where historical settings

are the backdrop of our everyday lives, it’s easy to become immune, even jaded, about the

significance of where we live. (Case and point, Mt. Vernon isn’t just a water stop and turnaround

point on a bike ride). We forget. And perhaps this is a good thing, lest we become

immobilized by an awareness of the grandness of it all, but making a conscious effort every

now and then is a worthwhile exercise, particularly when we can so easily pedal through a

living history lesson called Williamsburg.

WHILE IT’S TRUE THAT EVERYWHERE you look you’ll

find history, Williamsburg and the adjacent Jamestown

and Yorktown make up what’s called “the Historic

Triangle,” and do history in a way that learning about

it (or remembering it) is entertaining and practically

incidental. Its residents and businesses know this and

have created a particularly hospitable environment

for two-wheeled visitors. From their wide roads and

bike lanes that don’t suddenly disappear to their wellgroomed

bike trails, making the area bike-friendly has

been a decades-long goal which pays dividends in the

effortless riding.

Reed Nester, planning director for Williamsburg,

told SPOKES that in 1992 Williamsburg, James City

County, and York County banded together and

adopted a regional plan to improve and create more

bicycling opportunities in the area. To date, there’s

over 50 miles of bicycle facilities, be it lanes or paths,

in the greater Williamsburg area.

Nancy Carter, president of the Williamsburg

Area Bicyclists says that Williamsburg as a city has

embraced the bike lane concept, noting that it comes

down to great planning. “The planners set forth this

goal and it’s backed by the local governments.”

Indeed, the combination of history-made-fun and easy

riding makes a Williamsburg weekend ideal for bikers

of all abilities while still being quite suitable for

families with young or inexperienced riders. Carter,

a former resident of Howard County, Maryland, is

familiar with suburban sprawl and how it can curtail

not only biking opportunities but safety as well. With

the James River on one side and the York River on the

other, she notes “we’re a small town on a peninsula,

not swamped with traffic and the development pressure

isn’t nearly as much which means traffic is much

less of a burden or obstacle.”

Likewise, Ted Moreland, the club’s vice president says,

“I can go out of my driveway and, in a matter of minutes,

be out in the country on lightly traveled country

roads. I don’t have to drive anywhere to enjoy great

biking. While we don’t have mountains, we do have

rolling terrain with the occasional ravine created by

a creek that bed make things a little more interesting.

You don’t have to go far to find water; there’s an

abundance of rivers, streams, and reservoirs within a

few miles.”

My experience came courtesy of the Potomac

Pedalers Touring Club’s Williamsburg bike weekend

and our cues came from the extremely hospitable

Williamsburg Area Bicyclists (WAB) club. Planning

a similar trip is easily accomplished, especially with

help from the updated Williamsburg Area Bike

Rides book available through the club’s website, the

“Williamsburg Biking Trails” brochure made available

by the Chamber of Commerce, and the new

“Bicycling in Virginia” brochure which is the state’s

first official map dedicated to biking. In addition,

local bike shops Conte’s and Bike Beat both have

routes available online. (See end of article for all website

addresses and contact information.)

The obvious choice is to start your trip by taking in

the sites of Colonial Williamsburg, a living breathing

community where you can experience life as it was

in the 18th century from farmers working fields and

craftspeople practicing trades to watching a young

government in action.

Stay at a hotel nearby (we stayed at the Patrick Henry

Inn) and you’ll have a quick ride into the Colonial

area and Merchant’s Square. Pick up a map from the

Visitor’s Center just outside the historic area or inside

at the information booths on South Henry or Duke

of Gloucester Streets and you’ll know what historic

buildings you’re seeing.

In order to enter the buildings you’ll need to purchase

a ticket ($36 for adults; $18 for youths), but

that’s not necessary for pedaling through or stopping

to shop or eat. Worth the price though, a ticket will

gain you entrance to dozens of reconstructed and

restored buildings like the Capitol and Courthouse,

museums like the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art

Museum and the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts

Museum, and trade shops such as the bookbindery

and blacksmith.

10 August 2009


Wonder what someone from the 18th century would

think of our lycra getups? Ask one of the roaming “costumed

interpreters”—you’ll see housewives and gentry,

soldiers and slaves, artisans and future presidents.

Those costumed people? You’ll see some of them

whether you pay or not so if you don’t have a lot of

time or don’t really care for seeing building interiors,

you’ll still get the Colonial Williamsburg ambience

with a leisurely pedal through town. Even more so if

you pick up some great snacks from The Cheese Shop

in Merchant Square. Sample a few of their 200 cheeses

before deciding on one, get some of their freshly

baked bread, pair it with a glass of wine (or bottle),

and sit on their patio for a pre- or post-ride treat.

Their sandwiches are a draw for present and even former

William & Mary students, as I learned from two

alumni who were going out of their way to stop in for

their favorite.

Wanting heartier fare you’ll find plenty of restaurant

options, from 18th century dining at one of the taverns

in the historic area to modern fare. Dining outside

one evening at Berret’s Grill, located off of Merchant’s

Square, was another relaxed moment and highlight.

Stay overnight and you’ll have the opportunity to

catch the Ghosts of Williamsburg tour, available every

night at 8 p.m. You might think it’s cheesy but it sure

is fun and all those flickering candle lights in the historic

area make it easier to transport yourself into the

right frame of mind. For a mere $11 you’ll get eerie

stories, a bit of folklore, and a few fun facts to tuck

away. Entertaining and knowledgeable guides answer

questions and steer the tour in the direction of the

group’s interests. Our guide gave us an interesting history

lesson about Williamsburg during the Civil War

and the role the Rockefeller’s had in restoring the

historic area to its former glory after it had fallen into

dilapidated conditions by the 1920s. Williamsburg was

not only a leading force during the Revolutionary era,

but also a leader in civil issues thanks to Rockefeller’s

demand of equal schooling and housing for black

residents and employees.

Before heading out, complete your tour of

Williamsburg’s historic area with a swoop through

the College of William & Mary located across from

Merchant Square on the Western edge; it’s the second

oldest college in the country and the alma matter of

Thomas Jefferson. The route I took, the Williamsburg

Area Bicyclist’s “Three Pond Cruise” cue took us past

the college, through neighborhoods and up to the

Waller Mill Trail, a paved and wooded trail through

Waller Mill Park and pond.

You won’t get very far without coming upon the

Colonial Parkway. Dubbed “America’s Historic

Highway,” its 23-mile route cuts right through

Williamsburg, connecting the Historic Triangle

and the entire 167 years of Colonial experience

in America—from the first permanent English

Settlement at Jamestown, through Virginia’s first capitol

of Williamsburg, to Yorktown, the site of the last

and deciding battle of the Revolutionary War. It’s an

easy, map-free solution to getting up and out quickly

on the bike and offers dramatic open vistas of rivers as

well as shady passageways through pine and hardwood

forests. It’s wide, lightly traveled, and seems to be

patrolled often. (Note: Park Police will give you a gentle

first warning to ride single file; take them seriously

and fall in line.) The ease and beauty does come with

a few perils however—while there is no loose gravel,

its surface of paved stone proves to be rather bumpy

for thin-tired bikes whose wheels can also get stuck

in the connecting groove if not paying attention. It’s

one of the area’s best assets so you should definitely

incorporate it into your plans, but less-experienced

riders should be reminded to be vigilant. Carter,

WAB’s president, admits that it can be a little bumpy

WILLIAMSBURG continued on p.12















August 2009

11


WILLIAMSBURG continued from p.11

but it doesn’t deter her. “The scenery is so beautiful.

Visually it’s very lush with all the flora and fauna.”

Something to put on your calendar, bikers can experience

the Colonial Parkway car-free the first Saturday

every May when the National Park Service closes

it off to motor vehicles between Williamsburg and

Jamestown. Says Mooreland, “This is a great way for

families to bike together in a safe and scenic environment.”

An added bonus for younger riders is the

Bicycle Skills Rodeo.

Bike east on the Parkway from Williamsburg 14 miles

and you’ll come upon Yorktown which represents

the end of the English Colonial period in North

America. There you can follow the Battlefield and

Allied Encampment Tour route, biking through battlefields,

the French encampment, and Washington’s

headquarters. Traffic is light, slow, and one-way. Many

cyclists bike the tour roads without a pass, but a $10

pass should be purchased from the Visitor Center

located at the end of the Colonial Parkway near the

waterfront. (The seven-day pass also includes access

to Jamestown Island at the other end of the Parkway.)

Again, costumed historical interpreters recreate a

Continental Army encampment and a 1780s farm.

Before or after, be sure to spend some time on

Yorktown’s Main Street enjoying the waterfront.

At the western end of the Colonial Parkway, nine

miles from Williamsburg, is Historic Jamestown, site

of the first successful English settlement. Your pass

from above gives you access to Jamestown Island and

ongoing archeological digs at the original fort built

by settlers in 1607. Before crossing onto or right after

crossing from the island, the route also passes by the

Glasshouse where you can watch a demonstration of

one of our first industries.

FOLDERS =

Convenience

WHY BUY AND RIDE A FOLDING BIKE?

It probably fits in the trunk of your car —

no bike rack to wrestle on and off the car.

Ride it to the Metro instead of driving and

you save $3+ per day for vehicle parking.

If space is at a premium at your place then

a bike that fits in the closet would be nice.

We keep hearing more and more reasons

from our folding bike customers.

We’re fighting “oil addiction” with

human powered transportation.

Join the fight – park your car and

ride your bike.

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COME TO OUR WEBSITE FOR INFORMATION

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OUR PRE-OWNED BIKES.

An easy seven-mile loop passes past these and through

woods and marshes. “The wonderful flat terrain

allowed us to take in the birding treasures on this

little gem of an island” raved Ziva Schuchman who

recently rode the loop. She adds that, “the ‘island’ is

a bike riding bird watcher’s paradise! We stopped by

a marsh to watch swallows catching insects in mid-air,

gorgeous red-wing black birds feeding on the rushes,

and nearby we saw frisky gold finches and a beautiful,

uncommon indigo bunting.”

Get off the bikes, take a little more time, and buy a

pass to Jamestown Settlement and you’ll have access

to a recreation of the colonist’s fort and the first

colony and be able to board replicas of the three

ships that sailed from England to Virginia. It should

be noted that while passes can be bought for the individual

locations from $10-$15 and are ideal if only

hitting one location, the best deal is to purchase a

multi-day pass (costing $10-$30) good for use at both

the Jamestown Settlement and the Yorktown Victory

Center, both of which are run by the Commonwealth

of Virginia. (For clarification, the actual Jamestown

Island and the Yorktown Battlefield and Visitor

Center, along with the Colonial Parkway comprise

the Colonial National Historic Park which is covered

through that earlier $10 park pass.)

Another way to Jamestown would be to take the

Virginia Capital Trail starting from the Chickahominy

Riverfront Park, a 20 minute drive from Williamsburg

located on Rt. 5—the John Tyler Memorial Highway.

Don’t let the word “highway” scare you—the paved

trail quickly crosses over this not-too-busy road and

in the seven miles it takes to get to Jamestown, you’ll

wind through wooded areas and cross decked bridges

with views of the surrounding pristine wetlands.

This trail is of particular note and one to watch

as it will eventually span 54 miles along the scenic

Route 5 corridor and connect “Capital to Capital,”

Williamsburg to Richmond “connecting Virginia’s

past and present” along one of the first inland routes

in North America. It will eventually run past original

James River plantations, the homes of Presidents

John Tyler and William Henry Harrison, numerous

Revolutionary War and Civil War battlefields, through

historic Charles City County, and snake along the

James River to Richmond’s modern waterfront where

it will connect to the Canal Walk and the James River

Park System. Sections are being worked on simultaneously

with several areas due for completion in 2009

and 2010, but the full extent won’t be complete until

2012. If the seven miles I rode was any indication, this

trail is going to be spectacular.

It is just seven miles from Chickahominy Park to

Jamestown but you can easily expand your ride (or

start a different ride) by taking the Jamestown Ferry

over to Surry County. The half-hour ferry runs regu-

WILLIAMSBURG continued on p.14

12 August 2009


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STAFFORD

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WHEELBASE

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WILLIAMSBURG continued from p.12

larly and is itself a treat—we were lucky enough to

spot eagles on our crossing. Once there you’ll have

access to the lush farms and rural roads of Surry and

Isle of Wright counties, the quaint town of Smithfield,

Bacon’s Castle, and Chippokes Plantation and State

Park. The ferry is free and you can bike as well as

drive onto the ferry which means if a long route starting

from Williamsburg or Chickahominy Park doesn’t

suite you, you can easily drive to Chippokes Park

and start from there. A favorite route of many area

bikers has you starting at that park and lunching in

Smithfield.

Smithfield may sound familiar because it’s home to

Smithfield Hams, but more than that, the town is

a terrific place to stop and treat yourself to one of

the soft-ball-sized muffins from the bakery or a cool

treat from the town’s ice cream parlor—conveniently

located practically next to each other, you can mull

over your decision while you browse through a few

antique stores. It’s billed as Williamsburg’s #1 day trip

because of all it has to offer. For instance, a little off

the beaten path, you’ll find Ivy Hill, a picturesque

cemetery which overlooks the Pagan River and dates

to 1886; it’s located just north of Smithfield (follow

Church Street out of town, cross a short bridge over

the Pagan River, entrance up the hill and on the left).

South of town you’ll find historic St. Luke’s Church

which dates to 1632 and is our nation’s only surviving

Gothic building. A visit to Fort Boykin, important

during the Revolution, rounds out the visit. Wanting

more details? Downtown walking tours are available.

“It’s so nice that most of our really historic attractions

are bikeable.” says Williamsburg’s Planning Director

Nester. Locals know what they’ve got, are proud to

share it, and have an attitude and area embracing to

cyclists. Make that 2-3 hour drive down south and this

is one history lesson you won’t soon forget. A final

bit of advice for families comes from Mooreland, “If

parents have trouble getting their children excited

about coming to Williamsburg and learning about history,

they can always dangle Busch Gardens and Water

Country as enticements.”

General Resources

Williamsburg Area Bicyclists

www.wabonline.org

Williamsburg Area Bike Rides book ($20.90)

www.wabonline.org/book.html

Historic Triangle Map

www.visitwilliamsburg.com/maps--local-info/

download.aspx?id=533

Williamsburg Biking Trails Brochure (Chamber of

Commerce)

www.williamsburgcc.com

Bicycling in Virginia Brochure

www.virginia.org/site/features.asp?FeatureID=352

www.virginia.org

(select Get Outside/General Sports/Biking for

specific trail information)

Jamestown Ferry

www.virginiadot.org/travel/ferry-jamestown.asp

Bike Shops

Conte’s (757) 565-1225

www.contebikes.com

BikeBeat (757) 229-0096

www.bikebeatonline.com

Bikes Unlimited (757) 229-4620

www.bikewilliamsburg.com

State Parks & Bike Trails

Colonial Parkway

www.nps.gov/colo/parkway.htm

www.byway.org/explore/byways/60441/stories/61879

Virginia Capital Trail

www.virginiacapitaltrail.org

Chickahominy Riverfront Park

www.jccegov.com/recreation/parks-trails/

chickahominy-park.html

Chippokes Plantation State Park

www.dcr.virginia.gov/state_parks/chi.shtml

Things to Do / Places to Visit

Colonial Williamsburg

www.history.org

Jamestown Settlement

www.historyisfun.org

Historic Yorktown

www.yorkcounty.gov/tourism

Surry County

www.toursurryva.com

Smithfield

www.visitsmithfieldisleofwight.com

Williamsburg Winery

www.williamsburgwinery.com

Berkley Plantation

www.berkeleyplantation.com

The Ghost Tour

www.theghosttour.com

Reach Over

30,000

Bicycling Enthusiasts

Call 301-371-5309

14 August 2009


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BALTIMORE & WASHINGTON –

FRIENDLY CYCLING CITIES

by RON CASSIE

Baltimore and Washington, D.C., have made the top ten among

America’s most bicycle friendly cities, according to a study

released in June. Baltimore was ranked third and D.C. was

ranked sixth.

For the first time in four years, a new city claimed the title as

the worst in the U.S. for road rage. New York has unseated

Miami as the least courteous city, according to the fourth

annual In the Driver’s Seat Road Rage Survey, commissioned by

AutoVantage, a leading national auto club.

The Big Apple moved up from its No. 3 ranking last year to

claim the distinction.

Rounding out the five worst cities for road rage are Dallas/Fort

Worth, Detroit, Atlanta and Minneapolis/St. Paul.

The survey also named a new city as the most courteous.

Portland, Oregon, took the top spot, moving up from No.

2 last year. It was followed by 2) Cleveland, 3) Baltimore,

4) Sacramento, 5) Pittsburgh, 6) Washington, D.C. 7) tied:

Philadelphia & St. Louis 9) Boston 10) Seattle.

Behaviors by other drivers that cause stress for commuters and

can lead to road rage include:

• Drivers who talk on their cell phones (84 percent see this

every day)

• Driving too fast (58 percent)

• Tailgating (53 percent)

• Drivers eating or drinking while driving (48 percent)

• Texting or e-mailing while driving (37 percent)

Commuters also reported other drivers frequently:

• Cutting over without notice (43 percent see this every day)

• Doing other things – putting on makeup, shaving or reading

behind the wheel (27 percent)

• Slamming on the brakes (25 percent)

• Running red lights (22 percent)

As a reaction to rude or bad driving by others, people surveyed

admitted that they:

• Honk their horn at the offending driver (43 percent admit

doing this every month)

• Curse at the other driver (36 percent)

• Wave their fist or arms (13 percent)

• Make an obscene gesture (10 percent)

• Call the police to report the driver (7 percent)

• Slam into the car in front of them (1 percent)

FREE

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16 August 2009


TOUR DE FRANCE:

A SPECTATOR’S PERSPECTIVE

by LISA A. KILDAY

It was fitting that I chose to view Stage 13 of the 96th Tour

de France in Colmar, France. Colmar is home to the sculptor

Frédéric Bartholdi who designed the Statute of Liberty that was

donated to the U.S. in 1886. A 12-meter high replica of Lady

Liberty is displayed when you enter the town. Colmar is located

in the Alsace vineyard region of France bordering Germany’s

Black Forest and has been a six-time host city for the Tour. This

region has been predominantly under German control, which

is reflected in the local German inflected dialect of French,

their food, and culture. Recently in terms of European history,

Germany ceded this region back to France after WWII. This may

provide some relief for those who suffer from Francophobia.

In contrast to Colmar’s genteel hills, the historic center of

Colmar was bustling with Tour de France fever. Coordinating

yellow and black trash bags hung on the barricades of the

Tour’s route inside Colmar. As the temperature dipped into

the low 50s, the people watching in Colmar began arriving.

Spectators donned yellow baseball caps from Tour sponsor,

LCL Banque. The giant green foam hands from PMUS, also a

Tour sponsor, returned to the Tour in foam this time instead

of the accident-prone cardboard versions. Pensioners were a

plenty to receive many of the freebie’s provided by the sponsors

of the Tour.

Miraculously, I wandered past heavy barricades and half a

dozen French policemen to enter into the park that housed the

media. The media area was more than a park; it was a mobile

command center for TV stations from around the world. The

media park was like a movie set on steroids. Instead of a few

TV trucks and tents, there were over 70 big rigs and dozens of

trailers and tents from what seem like every European TV station.

I gravitated toward the Versus Channel truck naturally. The

Versus 18-wheeler studio had a unique setup with two levels.

Members of the TV crew allowed me to look inside their rolling

studio while Phil Liggett, Paul Sherwen and Bob Roll were filming

upstairs. The sides of the trailer on the first level opened up

to form a mobile stage. A few rows of chairs were arranged facing

a huge flat screen TV showing -- what else -- live coverage of

the Tour de France on Versus TV on the first floor of the studio.

The wardrobes of the presenters were hung up on the opposite

side of the stage. A staircase connected the first floor studio to

the second floor studio that is primarily used for broadcast.

I would have never guessed that the Versus TV studio was

designed like a pop-up camper. The second floor was retractable

and popped up to rise above the trees, which not only provided

a lovely backdrop for the broadcast but helped block other TV

trucks and tents that may interfere with Versus’ background.

Although I enjoyed roaming around the media village, the temperatures

were dropping quickly and I left to warm up inside

a café. About two hours before the expected finish time, I

searched for a good viewing spot. Unfortunately, the crowd was

lining up three deep against the fence. Despite strong French

police presence and a few members of the French Army guarding

the VIP section, I strolled in to the barricaded VIP section

without a wristband or expensive ticket. It was pretty sweet to

be within 100 meters of the finish line even in the pouring rain.

At the end of each stage usually two hours before the expected

finish time, all of the team sponsors and team vehicles do an

impromptu parade through the last kilometers of the stage.

While it was fun to receive some token race goodies, I thought

that the parade was over commercialized. I find this ironic

since Europeans tend to have the view that Americans are

money obsessed. In my opinion, the Tour is essentially a 2,800-

mile train of advertisements; each cyclist is branded from head

to toe with advertisements and every team vehicle is a billboard

for their backers.

I spoke to several French spectators regarding their favorite

team and cyclist. The Frenchmen displaying fevered nationalism

only supported French riders, such as, Sebastien Minard,

on French teams (Cofidis) who were not particularly talented

or favored to win. Their blind allegiance puzzled me but then

again most Americans are fixated on the veteran seven-time

winner Lance Armstrong.

Cycling’s popularity has also waned in Europe recently due

to the frequent doping dramas, such as, Festina Affair and

Operacion Puerto. Helmut Berthold of Germany told SPOKES,

“the Tour is irrelevant to sports. [It’s] a Tour de Pharma.”

Despite the inevitable cynicism, the 2009 Tour went on with

great success with a lot of help from Armstrong’s comeback.

And not one rider was cast our due to doping allegations.

The local newspapers in Germany and France featured articles

on the Tour’s arrival to their region; notably, each paper had a

feature article on our hometown hero Lance Armstrong. Even

some French people could not contain their excitement about

Lance’s return and admitted that they would not mind seeing

Lance riding in the peloton that day.

Stage 13 was expected to favor the sprinters despite the category

1 climb and a pair of category 2 and 3 mountain climbs

in the 200 km course. Alsace is home to modest mountains and

did not produce any challenging climbs.

Surprisingly, Heinrich Haussler riding for the Cervélo Test Team

broke away from the peloton 5 km after the start and raced

solo to the finish to gain his first maillot jaune. Haussler is an

Australian of German descent who relocated to Germany as

a teenager to pursue his dreams of becoming a professional

cyclist. He currently lives and trains 30 kilometers away from

Colmar in Germany.

The self-titled “Racing Kangaroo” could not hold back his tears

after winning his first Tour de France stage by more than a mile.

The peloton finished seven minutes behind him. The only difficulty

that the riders and spectators had with the day was the

cool weather and the miserable downpour of Stage 13.

As a spectator, I was disappointed with the weather but glad

that I had a chance to attend. Plus, the Tour de France is a free

event, so I cannot complain. I originally planned to attend Stage

15 in Verbier, Switzerland. Stage 15 in the Alps proved to be

exciting and decisive for Team Astana’s individual standings,

potentially spoiling Lance Armstrong’s chances to win the Tour.

Mountain stages generally have more fans because the stages

offer multiple viewing points and the cyclists ride by slower

during mountain stages versus the flat or time trial stages.

However, the fan fare and people watching in Colmar were

worth the two-hour soggy wait for Haussler’s solo finish.

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August 2009

17


DEPARTMENTS

TRISPOKES by RON CASSIE ron_cassie@yahoo.com

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XTERRA EX2 Off-Road Triathlon

Frank Febbraro crossed the finish line first at the mid-

July EXTERRA EX2 Off-Road Triathlon at Rocky Gap

State Park. And with a beaming smile, he put his huge

effort perfectly in context with just six words: “I have

never won a race before.”

Never, Frank?

“Not of any kind.”

Febbraro, 34, of Falls Church, Va., aced the 0.75-mile

open water swim, 14-mile mountain bike trek and 5-

mile trail run in 2:09.31, nearly a full three minutes

over the second-place finisher, Mike Hebe, of New

Cumberland, Pa. racing in the 40-44 age group.

Chris Sams, of Baltimore, in the 25-29 category took

third overall.

Kathleen Coutinho, 39, of Fairfax Station, won the

women’s side of the event, in 2:33:34. Shannon

Showalter, 35, of Rehoboth, Del., took second in

2:35:44, and Valerie Hardin, 45, of Doylestown,

Pa., grabbed third overall in the women’s group in

2:39:49.

Febbraro described himself as a formerly out-of-shape,

ex-lacrosse midfielder in his 20s, content to drink a

lot of beer in college – and for a few years afterwards.

At 29, he started swimming and did his first triathlon.

His first EXTERRA event was a race on Long Island

– he’s originally from New York.

“I’ve been hooked ever since,” he told SPOKES.

Last year, Febbraro finished second at the popular

XTERRA EX2 Rocky Gap race by 13 seconds.

Overall, Febbraro said, he’s lost about 35 pounds

since he began competing five years ago. Febbraro,

who runs a software technology company, added that

once he started racing he made a commitment “to figure

out how to do this thing.” But it’s taken time.

He eventually joined the Curl-Burke master’s swim club

based in Northern Virginia, however, he added the

swimming segment remains his weakest triathlon skill.

“Normally, I’m 30-40 (people) back coming out of the

water,” said Febbraro immediately after his July 12 win

in Flintstone, Md. “Today, maybe I was in the

top 20, and I thought, ‘I’ve got to get on bike and

charge back.’”

In fact, Febbraro came out the water better than he

expected, in 15th place. He then posted the third-fastest

split on the first mountain bike loop and best split

on the second mountain bike loop.

His 5-mile trail run time, 38:26, was the second-best

time overall, nine seconds behind Sams, but plenty

fast enough for the victory.

“I caught the guy ahead of me about halfway around

the second bike loop and came into the last transition

in first place,” Febbraro said. “I give away 3-4 minutes

in the swim – it’s getting better – and I’ve always been

able to run.

“It’s been a slow a progression (in off-road triathlon).

I’m second in the overall EXTERRA standings in the

30-34 age group in the mid-Atlantic region, a couple

years back I was eighth or ninth.”Now, the former big-

XTERRA EX2 Off-Road Triathlon at Rocky Gap State Park

Lynne Collard, 59, right, with grandchildren and her

daughter, Danielle Ranno, who also competed at the

Rocky Gap off-road tri.

Jan Frodeno of Germany at the finish of DC's ITU race

Award ceremony of 1st-3rd place at DC's ITU race

18 August 2009


time beer drinker is headed to Maui, the week of Oct.

25, for the EXTERRA World Championship.

“I’m going to be there,” Febbraro said. “It’s kind

of exciting.”

Dr. Kathy also Heading to Maui

of Fairfax, Va. was the top region finisher in his age

group, taking second in 3:14:00, and Jim Claudia, 59,

of Weirton, WV., won the male 55-59 group in 3:11:39.

Jennifer Scholtes, 24, of Washington, D.C., won the

female 20-24 category in 3:41:17, followed by Mary

Wells, 24, of LaPlata, Md. Laura Cathers, 26, of

Frederick, Md., took second in the 25-29 age group in

2:52:36.

Corrine Banks, 30, of Ocean City, won the 30-34

age group in 2:47:00, ahead of Marie-Claude Lavoi,

31, of Washington, D.C., and Lila Thomas, 31, of

Morgantown, WV.

Tammi Stauffer, 44, of Baltimore won the female

40-44 group in 3:01:10. Linda Henry, 47, of Fairfax,

took second in the 45-49 bracket, in 3:11:39. Roseann

Dougherty, 50, of Glenwood, Md., won the 50-55

group in 3:13:18.

Along the family-theme, Lynne Collard, 59, who won

the 55-59 group –with a time that closely matched the

men in her group – was invited to race by her daughter,

Danielle Ranno. A 34-year-old nurse and mother

of three from New Market, Md., Ranno found the

XTERRA race at Rocky Gap surfing the web earlier

this year and thought it would be a neat event for her

and her mother do together. Danielle figured her

husband, Paul, a triathlete recuperating from an injury,

could watch the kids at the Rocky Gap lake beach

while she and her mom, Lynne Collard, 59, tackled

the off-road triathlon. Just a nice, girls-only, summer

day kind of thing.

Collard, a grandmother of eight, beat her daughter by

20 minutes, finishing in 3:24:59.

TRISPOKES continued on p.20

Women’s winner Kathy Coutinho crossing

the finish line with her daughter.

Also, heading to Maui, is the 39-year-old Coutinho,

also known as “Dr. Kathy.” She’s a Northern Virginia

chiropractor.

Coutinho, originally from Victoria in northern British

Columbia, said she’s always been an athlete, growing

up playing basketball mostly – and mountain biking.

“Everyone in Victoria mountain bikes,” she said.

Coutinho hadn’t been doing triathlons long before

she started having children, and her two girls, Valerie,

4 and 1⁄2, and Madison, 20 months, were both at the

race at Rocky Gap. But she has always been dominating

on the bike because of her background in the

sport. Her swim time, for example, was 127th overall

– men and women included – while her second bike

loop was 27th best among men and women. She

would have done even better, if not for spill on the

bike, while attempting to pass several men.

“Most men still don’t like getting passed by a woman,

and the last guy in the group – “I kept saying, ‘Left!

Left!,” – wouldn’t yield and I ended up going into

a tree.”

It should be noted that Coutinho’s husband, Pierre

Martel, a sometime training partner of Febbraro’s,

took eighth overall, finishing in 2:20:15.

At the Richmond East Coast Championships earlier

this year, Coutinho won her age group and was the

second overall amateur woman to finish.

Like Febbraro, Coutinho said she liked the family

environment of off-road triathlons where many athletes

bring family and friends along to hang out for

the day. Off-road competitors are a little more friendly

– they said – than hyper-time oriented road racing

triathletes.

The XTERRA race age-groups were dominated by

local competitors.

Jared Lewis, 24, of Richmond, won the 20-24 male

group in 2:32:42. Matthew Bartlett, 31, of Washington,

D.C. won the 30-34 male bracket in 2:23:19. Mike

Hebe, 42, last year’s overall winner, won his age group

in 2:2:23. Henry Loving, 46, of Midlothian, Va., won

the male 45-49 bracket in 2:21:41. Scott Henry, 50,

August 2009

19


TRISPOKES continued from p.19

“I passed her on the first loop on the mountain bike

trail,” Collard said, smiling shyly. “I told her ‘Keep

going.’ ‘Way to go.’

“She told me, ‘I don’t know about this sport of yours.’”

Except for chasing her four kids, Collard didn’t work

out regularly until she was in her 40s. But she set her

goals high, completing the Marine Corps Marathon at

age 45 and later completing the Columbia Triathlon.

She became a personal trainer, and ultimately fell in

love with mountain biking as she turned 50.

Now nearly 60, Collard hardly fits the stereotypical

gnarly mountain biker demographic, but she rides

almost every day either at Gambrill State Park and

the Frederick Watershed or northern Montgomery

County parks.

“I’m making up for lost time,” Collard joked.

Her youngest daughter, Gabrielle Dunn, 30, a planning

director for the City of Frederick, often serves as

her mountain bike partner. Collard’s oldest daughter,

Nicole Kunkel, is biding her athletic time as she raises

five kids. Her 27-year-old son, Christian, the youngest

of her children, works out but does not race.

“We’re all kind of crazy,” Collard said of herself and

her daughters. Of her son, she said, “We’ll get him to

something soon.”

At the Sixth Annual XTERRA EX2 Off-Road Triathlon

at Rocky Gap, Collard was the oldest woman competitor

by five years. With three men, she tied for oldest

competitor overall – and her times were right the mix

with the guys.

She and her daughter described the course as tough,

but fair.

Danielle lost a toe clip on her mountain bike, yet was

able to continue despite being a relative novice to the

sport. The mountain bike segment included a few

“rock gardens” as they’re called in the sport, as well

as a challenging climb up “Evitt’s Revenge,” wide fire

roads, smooth grassy sections and lakeside single-track.

The 5-mile trail run included rooty trails, open flats

and a big stone-faced climb.

“The run was like a rock scramble,” Collard said.

“There was one stretch where it was like climbing over

a building – on all four – not a lot of running going

on. It was a challenge.”

“I took a spill running,” Ranno said, chuckling. “What

run, anyhow? I was rock climbing.”

Both agreed that simply getting outdoors –breaking

the fitness center routine and testing themselves – was

the best fun.

“The gym does get a little boring,” Ranno said.”The

way I look at it,” Collard said, “is you can go to a gym

every day, but you still need to take it outside and see

what you can do. And it gives you something to look

forward to.”

At the finish Sunday, Collard was greeted by her

son-in-law and Danielle’s three little ones, Noah, 9,

Sidney, 5, and Delaney, 2.

“I figure it’s good for them to see their grandmother

rockin’ the bike out here,” Collard said. “I guess I’m

not the usual grandmother sitting in the rocking

chair – although that’s a good thing, too.

“They still call me ‘Old Grannie’ anyhow. Even when

they’re rootin’ for me. They yell, ‘Go Old Grannie.’”

DC’s Dextro Energy Triathlon

by Lisa A. Kilday

Washington, D.C., served as a fitting host for over

90 elite triathletes from 25 countries to race in the

Dextro Energy Triathlon on June 21, as part of the

International Triathlon Union’s World Championship

Series. At least 17 of the participating triathletes competed

in the recent Beijing Olympics.

This provided a great backdrop for a rematch

between gold medal winner Emma Snowsill and

bronze medal winner Emma Moffatt, both of

Australia. The respective gold, silver, and bronze male

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medal winners from the 2008 Olympics, Jan Frodeno

(Germany), Simon Whitfield (Canada), and Bevan

Docherty (New Zealand) also raced.

D.C. is the only city in the Americas to host a World

Championship race series culminating with a Grand

Final Championship race on the Gold Coast of

Australia on September 12-13. Starting in 2010, the

World Championship Series will be the sole qualifying

mode for elite triathletes to race in the 2012 Olympics

in London.

Although heavy rains forced the cancellation of a prerace

swim practice in the Potomac River on June 20,

the Olympic race for elites and age group races in the

sprint- and olympic-distances were held as scheduled

on June 21. The sprint distance consists of a 750 m

swim, 20 km bike, and 5 km run. The Olympic distance

is a 1.5 km swim, a 40 km bike, and 10 km run

and has been designated as the official distance for

triathlon in the Olympics since 1988 even though

triathlon did not become an Olympic sport until the

2000 Sydney Games.

The age group sprint- and Olympic-distance races

had a modest field of 1000 competitors but organizers

hope that the size of the race will increase due to

the popularity of multisport events in the mid-Atlantic

area. The main difference between the ITU style of

racing and amateur triathlon is that drafting while

cycling is permitted at ITU races. Thus, the importance

of a strong swim performance is key to establishing

a lead on the bicycle leg in an ITU race where

athletes in non-drafting triathlons usually rely heavily

on their biking and running skills to excel.

The swim was less than ideal with heavy debris including

logs, trash, and leaves floating in the swollen and

slightly choppy Potomac on race day. However, the

race organizers did their best to remove the bulk of

this debris from the large swim area and provided

ample safety measures.

Unfortunately, a showdown between the top three

male Olympians did not happen because a group of

five top swimmers augmented their 20-second lead

after the swim to a minute and a half-minute gap

from the peloton after the bike. This deficit was too

large for Jan Frodeno (DE), Daniel Unger (DE), and

Laurent Vidal (FR) to make up during the four loop

10 km run.

The top five finishers in the men’s ITU race were

Alistair Brownlee (UK), Javier Gomez (ES), Maik

Petzold (DE), Andy Potts (US), and Hunter Kemper

(US). In the women’s race, the Emmas from Australia

ruled, with Moffat claiming first and Snowsill grabbing

second. Daniela Ryf from Switzerland surprised

many in the crowd with a third place finish.

CAMP ACHIEVE

Another highlight of this epic weekend of triathlon

was a pre-race visit of 20 elite triathletes to DC’s Camp

ACHIEVE.

DC’s Camp ACHIEVE is one of the only triathlon-specific

sport camps held in the U.S. Now, in its second

year, the six-week camp allows inner city youth to

learn about fitness and the fundamentals of swimming,

biking, and running at three different D.C.

park locations. Camp ACHIEVE’s season will culminate

with a USAT-sanctioned triathlon where the

campers from the three sites will compete against one

another on July 24th.

During the ITU weekend, the kids at Camp ACHIEVE

had the opportunity to meet professional triathletes

and get tips from the pros. A few of the elite triathletes

helped the kids at each station, such as, bike

transition and running.

After a group stretch and a few warm-up laps around

the field, the triathletes posed for pictures with

the kids. Among those who participated were 2008

Beijing Olympic gold medal winner Jan Frodeno

from Germany, Olympian Tim Don from England,

and many other triathletes from the US, Germany,

Switzerland, Canada, and Australia.

The kids especially enjoyed meeting three-time U.S.

Olympian Hunter Kemper and taking pictures of

him with his Wheaties cereal box that featured him.

Kemper was the first triathlete to ever be featured on

a Wheaties cereal box. At this point, the kids marveled

at the Wheaties box and really understood how

famous the triathletes are.

Accomplished triathlete D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty

attended and proclaimed June 19 as Olympics Day in

the Nation’s Capital.

20 August 2009


SINGLETRACK by JOE FOLEY jfoley441@gmail.com

COLUMNS

Summer Riding Tips

Ah, the dog days of summer -- high temperatures

knocking on the door of 100 degrees, blazing sun,

and soupy humidity. While we did get a few nice

weekends amid the monsoons we got this spring we

all know that come August we’ll be sweltering in the

heat and humidity of a mid-Atlantic summer again.

And this weather isn’t just uncomfortable, it can

also be downright dangerous if you’re unprepared.

Dehydration, hyponatremia, heat stroke, and exhaustion

all lurk out there waiting.

While I’m sure there are a few crazy souls that like

this weather, if you’re not a fan of riding in this weather,

then you’ve only got a couple of options. You can

either put away your bikes from mid-July until mid-

September or you can take some simple steps to make

summer riding safer and much more enjoyable. Now

I don’t suppose that many of our readers are going to

take the first choice so here are some tips to keep safe

and comfortable in the summer doldrums.

Ride Early or Ride Late - Starting with the obvious, try

to avoid riding in the midday heat. Early morning and

late evening offer a break from the heat and the full

force of the sun. Try an early morning “dawn patrol”

ride at your local park, an evening spin after work,

give night riding a try.

As a bonus, wildlife is often more active in the early

morning and evening. While it’s not a good idea to

plan an epic ride or try a new trail system in the evening,

a little spin in the woods is the great way to end

a day. If you’re going to try riding at night, make sure

that the park allows it as many parks and their trails

close at dark.

Stay Hydrated and Fueled - As the heat makes us

sweat more, you need to pay extra attention to hydration

in the summer. Plan on carrying at least 18-24

ounces of water for every hour you’ll be riding and

you need to make sure that you drink it consistently

throughout your ride. Take a sip every couple of minutes

- water that stays in your bottle or hydration pack

doesn’t do any good at warding off dehydration.

Many people find that hydration packs make them

more likely to drink more during a ride, but often

people don’t like the weight on their back or find that

they get too warm. Manufacturers have come up with

many novel designs to keep the perception of weight

low and help keep your back cool. Whether you

choose a pack or bottles, make sure you’ve got plenty

-- remember, it’s 18-24 ounces per hour that you’re

out -- and if you’re going to be out for longer than

you can carry, know where you can refill your bottles.

In addition to dehydration, you need to pay attention

to replacing the electrolytes that your body loses

through sweat. You can use a sports drink, or an electrolyte

replacement product to help replace electrolytes.

Remember that “electrolytes” doesn’t just mean

salt (sodium chloride). In addition to sodium and

chloride, your body also need calcium, magnesium,

and potassium. A good electrolyte replacement product

will contain a mix of all five of these minerals, and

possibly more. There are many brands available in

pill and chewable tablet form, as well as concentrates

or tablets that can be added to water.

The heat of the summer tends to make you less likely

to want to eat while you’re riding, but make sure that

you don’t neglect this side of the water, food, electrolytes

triangle. Find some food that you can eat easily

in the summer. Sugary sweet snacks are often hard

once you’re thirsty, so try more savory and natural

options, like bananas which also have a nice amount

of potassium in them.

Dress to Stay Cool - If you’re still riding in cotton

shorts and t-shirts, the summer is the perfect time to

switch to riding in technical cycling clothes. While

cotton will absorb sweat and just get wet and heave,

the fabrics used in cycling jerseys and shorts are

designed to wick away moisture to help keep you cool.

For those who aren’t ready for skin tight shorts and

jerseys, there are plenty of casual options that offer

the same performance benefits in less form fitting

cuts. Pay attention to the weight of the fabric and

lighter colors will help you stay cooler in the sun.

If you’re not into artificial fibers, then there’s wool.

While it might seem unusual, wool has many of the

same wicking properties as the synthetics and there

are summer weight wool and wool/synthetic blend

jerseys available.

While you’re at it, take a look at the rest of your gear.

There’s a lot of difference in the amount of ventilation

different helmets allow. It’s important for much

the same reason your mom nagged you to always wear

a hat in the winter. The head accounts for most of the

body’s ability to shed heat, so give it a hand.

Head into the Woods - Let’s face facts here, just heading

out for a mountain bike ride is already a great

way to beat the heat. Once you’re away in the shade

of the woods you’re already a few degrees cooler. On

the worst of sun-baked days, try and avoid exposed

trails and try to stay in the shade, especially on climbs,

where you’ll feel the effect the most.

Head Out and Up - The shade of the woods already

offers a great refuge from the heat, but don’t forget

about heading out of the city and up into the

Appalachian ridges. You can easily cut the temperature

a couple more degrees by getting away from

all of the heat islands that the cities and all of their

asphalt, concrete, and cars create. This is a great

time to head out into Virginia’s George Washington

and Jefferson National Forests and West Virginia’s

Monongahela National Forest. While these rides take

a little more preparation, they make great summer

getaways. A bit closer are the cool mountain trails of

Maryland’s Greenbrier and Gambrill State Parks.

Prepare Properly and Recover Smart - Avoiding dehydration

starts well before you ride and doesn’t when

you get out of the saddle. Before a big ride it’s always

a good idea to start hydrating early, from a couple

of hours before a normal ride to a couple of days

before an epic. The day before a long ride I’ll carry a

water bottle with me and try to drink consistently. By

building up your body’s store of water, fuel, and electrolytes,

you help to build reserves so that you won’t

deplete them as badly while you’re out. Similarly,

after a ride, you should give your body what it needs

to recover well. Keep drinking to help your body

replace what was lost during riding and have something

to eat with a mix of healthy carbohydrates and

protein within and hour of riding.

MORE Fall Camping Trip Registration Opens Soon

The MORE (Mid-Atlantic Off-Road Enthusiasts)

Fall Camping Trip will be held in its usual location

at Douthat State Park in Clifton Forge, Va., from

September 18-20. The riding at Douthat is some of my

favorite riding anywhere but the campsite only has room

for about 100 campers, so space is limited. Registration

will open to MORE members on August 1st and if there

are any spaces left they’ll open to non-members a week

later. Keep an eye on http://www.more-mtb.org for registration

information when it’s posted.

Fountainhead Project Keeps Rolling Along

The project to renovate the Fountainhead

Regional Park trail system is going strong. (See the

SpokesWoman Column in the July issue of Spokes for

more details about this project.) The project recently

received a $7,000 grant from REI and was also able

to raise over $4500 in donations and matching fund

from SRAM through racers riding with the Team

IMBA program at the Massanutten Hoo-Ha. The goal

for the first phase of the project is to raise $30,000 to

complete several demonstration projects. There will

be an informational session about the project at the

REI store in Fairfax, Va., on August 25 at 7 p.m.

Trail Maintenance Time is Coming

While it may seem hard to believe fall is coming, and

with it, comes trail maintenance time. Keep an eye on

your local mountain bike club websites, listserves, and

mailings as fall workdays are announced. Get out this

fall and give back to the trails you ride all year long.

August 2009

21


DEPARTMENTS

COMMUTER CONNECTION by RON CASSIE ron_cassie@yahoo.com

Cyclists Ticketed in Loudoun

Several bicyclists in the National Multiple Sclerosis

MS–150 bike ride and fundraiser In mid-June were

ticketed for rolling through a stop sign near a rest

stop in Loudoun County, Va. evolving into a case that

received a great deal of attention regionally.

In early July, Loudoun triathlete and attorney Doug

Landau represented two of the bicyclists ticketed.

Another bicyclist who received a continuance is scheduled

to go back to court in early August.

Landau said he was vacationing with his wife in

Connecticut – and doing some bicycling himself in

the Berkshires over the July 4 weekend – when he

received a call from one of the bicyclists asking for

help. Not normally a trial or criminal defense attorney,

Landau typically handles personal injury litigation,

he took the case pro bono. However, Landau

has, he mentioned, often represented cyclists, triathletes

and runners injured while training. He knows

the hazards and issues around biking safety perhaps as

well as anyone.

“I’ll represent all of you, if you’ll have me,” Landau

recalled responding to the request for legal aid.

The charges the riders faced, running through a stop

sign in Virginia, were hardly minor. Landau quickly

learned that, if guilty, riders would receive four points

added on to their motor vehicle driving record – sure

to increase to insurance premiums for years – at a

minimum as well as a large fine. Any of the bicyclists

who use a company vehicle or drive as part of their

job could face repercussions at work. And, the

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additional points on their driving record could lose

potentially driving privileges.

Landau noted that with the increased accessibility

of public records on the Internet, the information

regarding being found guilty of running a stop sign

would be widely available to anyone doing a subsequent

background check. Also, there would be no

indication in the public record that this violation had

occurred on a bicycle and not an automoble.

On Sunday, June 11th, a total of eight cyclists were

stopped for riding through a stop sign (Virginia Code

46.2-821) by a police officer whose car was parked a

full 300 feet away, Landau said, with orange cones near

a planned 7-11 rest stop. One cyclist, Landau said,

was a ride leader of the Potomac Peddlers, and the

others were part of the MS-150 event. As the cyclists

approached the stop signs, located on an open, rural

road, they slowed down, looked both ways, saw no traffic

and continued on their route around the “squircle”

(a squared off traffic circle with four stop signs and a

sidewalk running through the center).

Rather than follow some of the cyclists through the

middle of the square, Landau noted, these experienced

bicycle riders thought going around the “squircle”

would be safer.

The cyclists, Landau said during a telephone interview

and explained on his law firm’s website blog

(www.landaulawshop), thought the police officer was

waving on participants in the MS charity ride, as the

route was pre-published. Landau added however, that

Loudoun County police had not been hired to help

with ride security or directing traffic.

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Trial lawyer and triathlete Doug Landau after

finishing the Winchester Apple Blossom Festival 10km

Rather than warn riders, all of whom Landau said

according to witnesses, had come to either a rolling

stop or track stand stop, the police officer proceeded

to ticket them for not coming to a complete stop.

Landau represented two of the cyclists in the

Loudoun County Court, both of whom pleaded “not

guilty” to the charges. In the end, they accepted lesser

offenses of not having proper reflectors on their

bicycles – an interesting compromise because this was

obviously a daytime event.

Unfortunately, by the trial date, four of the bicyclists

had already gone ahead and paid their tickets through

the mail, an admission of guilt. They thereby accepted

the large fine and points on their driving records.

Another cyclist, representing himself, lost his case.

However, Landau was able – with photographic evidence,

with the presentation of driving records of

the bicyclists, with the published routes and eyewitness

testimony – to save any moving violation points

from being added to the other two bicyclist’s driving

records.

“They took me to lunch afterwards,” Landau said.

“Then all hell broke loose.”

The triathlon racing attorney explained that on the

Internet, despite winning practicable gains in court,

the attorney was taken to task for accepting any kind

of compromise in the case.

“On the blogs, they said I should have lost the case

and then appealed it before a court with a jury,”

Landau said. “People complained that now they have

to keep reflectors on their bikes – even though that’s

only a sun down to sun up law. People said I should’ve

taken it to the U.S. Supreme Court. Others wrote that

I shouldn’t be defending ‘whiney’ cyclists who have

‘to learn to take their medicine.’”

22 August 2009


Landau pointed out that none-of this would have happened

if the Commonwealth of Virginia had adopted

the “Idaho Stop Law,” which permits cyclists to roll up

to a stop sign, yield the right of way, and then proceed

without stopping.

“Virginia should adopt laws like this, which make the

roadways safer for cyclists and motorists,” he said,

“while at the same time freeing up the traffic courts.

“The ‘MS-8’ (as the defendants became known)

were not riding dangerously or causing accidents or

injuries,” Landau wrote on his blog. “Bicyclists all

over Virginia should be aware that law enforcement

authorities can (and do) strictly enforce the stop sign

law. Even a ‘track stand’ stop may be insufficient for

some officers, such that a cyclist who is able to balance,

with no forward motion, but whose foot does

not leave the pedal or touch the ground, might be

given a ticket by zealous sheriffs and prosecuted by

Commonwealths Attorneys under the strict letter of

the existing laws.”

An attorney for 25 years, Landau bicycled regularly

himself throughout his education, first as an undergraduate

and graduate student at Boston University.

“I never had a car there,” he said.

He continued bicycling at the University of Miami,

where he eventually took up the relatively new sport

of triathlon. A few years ago he won the Bethesda

Autism Duathlon and this year won the Bethesda

Cure Autism Now sprint triathlon.

Landau said he has seen a growing acceptance of bicyclists

on the road over the years, albeit only recently.

“It started to turn around with the recent gas crisis,”

he said. “Fewer large cars on the road, people buying

smaller cars, and at least near the city (Washington,

D.C.) more people at least accepting the idea of bicyclists.

The older roads in the country are not designed

Doug Landau and Danielle Landau of

ABRAMS LANDAU, Ltd., outside the Loudoun County

Courthouse after representing cyclists in Leesburg

for Hummers and Escalades and bicyclists, there are

no shoulders on many of the roads.”

In the short term, more bicyclists have made for more

contact with drivers, creating problems – and injuries.

Overall, however, Landau is optimistic that more bicyclists

will eventually lead to safer bicycling. Because

of the gas crisis, which is going to continue, he said,

because of the health benefits of bicycling, the rails




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to trails program, political leaders like D.C. mayor

Adrian Fenty, the popularity of bicycling in western

U.S. cities like Portland, the growth of bicycling is

inevitable in Washington D.C., and the northern

Virginia area, Landau said.

Based on his decades of experience as a cyclist, and

also representing bicyclists who have been struck and

injured while riding, Landau has several recommendations

for riders that can make their bicycling safer.

“Avoid electronic distractions,” he said. “The ear

buds, the music, the cell phone. Unless you’re Lance

Armstrong, you don’t need an ear bud.”

Newer cyclists, he said, should make sure they can

get in and out of their toe clips easily. Go to the bike

shop, if necessary, and ask for the proper help. And

practice falling – on the grass.

“It looks stupid, but believe me, learning how to fall

can prevent injury.”

Landau also said, “get a bell.”

People may not want to put a clip on bell on their

expensive riding machine, he said, but it’s important,

especially on trails or local roads where a rider can

quickly come across a group or bicyclists or pedestrians.

Not everyone in the region speaks English as

their first language – and he suggests using as many

visual, verbal and aural precautions as possible.

“And carry I.D. – it doesn’t have to be a driver’s

license, but something and also something that lists

your medical issues,” Landau said. “Bring a cell phone

and a little bit of money.”

“I can tell you I have been out on long rides and run

out of nutrition. I’ve had to go into a store and beg

a little money from people I’ve been riding with,” he

said, stressing again that the cell phone is for emergencies

– not chatting while pedaling.

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August 2009

23


COLUMNS

FAMILY CYCLING 101 by KEVIN BRUGMAN kbrugman@cox.net

Reconfiguring the Modern Cycling Family

“Here, you relax; I’ll go do the dishes.” “Daaad!!! You

promised to let me cook for a while.” These were just

a few of the comments heard around the campsite at

a recent biking and camping weekend that we participated

in.

We have been hosting a Potomac Pedalers Touring

Club Family Bike Weekend for the past eight years

and have really watched the kids grow and become

true participants in the activities. This year we have

really seen many kids come into their own: cycling

longer and faster. Yet, the kids still wanted to be kids

and play and enjoy having the parents being around.

Saturday started with a breakfast of pancakes that the

children helped cook. (Which reminds me, the camp

stove still needs to be cleaned.) Then we headed off

on a ride to Furnace Town, MD. We had kids on singles,

tandems, triplets, tag-a-longs, and rack mounted

bike seats not to mention a recumbent in the pack.

We could have been our own parade, and there were

several families that did settle down on their front

porch and watch us ride by, waving at all of us as we

passed by.

One of the families was not able to ride their Bike

Friday Family Tandem on Saturday, so offered it up to

my two sons to try for the ride. My sons had successfully

ridden a Family Tandem around the parking lot

a couple of weeks earlier, so they eagerly accepted and

off they went on the tandem for the day’s ride. This

allowed my wife and me to ride on our tandem. This

was probably the first time we had been on the tandem

together in nine years. Since Jonathon has been

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stoker position enjoying all the scenery and I had a

powerful stoker that sent us flying down the road.

On the other hand, the boys quickly realized they had

overestimated their individual contributions on the tandem

with their parents and discovered new team work

on the tandem. They discovered the weakness of new

tandemists: a hill. At this point they just muscled up the

hill with little finesse, but they got up and were quite

proud of themselves, although privately each thought

that he had carried the other brother up the hill.

While at Furnace town, the children discovered many

of the joys of the simpler life. It always amazes me

how youth that seemingly cannot survive without their

I-Pod, DS or PSP will be enamored with pick-up sticks

or spend and extended time playing a simple ring toss

game. One lost little girl was quickly discovered quietly

watching the broom maker at work. This time the

blacksmith was at work and several of the kids were

mesmerized with the flying hammer and red hot iron

being turned from a simple bar into an ornate leaf.

The Furnace Town staff are very welcoming, opening

up a side gate and allowing us to park our bikes

under the shelter.

Soon it was time to leave and as we headed out, the

rain started to fall, and fall and fall even harder. But it

was a warm day and there was no complaining by any

of the children although a few parents were worried

about their children getting out of sight. As is the

case on these rides, all of the parents watched out for

all the children and two of the girls even asked us to

ride with them.

As soon as we all got to Snow Hill, the lightning and

thunder started in full force. We quickly found a

friendly sanctuary in “The Emporium, Ice Cream and

Dinette” and ordered our various ice cream concoctions.

The staff was very accommodating in letting

all of us stay even after we had long finished our ice

cream, but were kept inside by all the lightning outside.

Soon several of the folks started shivering in

their wet clothes and air conditioning, but the staff

quickly realized what was happening after several folks

ordered hot chocolate and they turned off the air

24 August 2009


conditioning until the storm passed and we were able

to continue our ride. If you ever get the chance while

in Snow Hill, stop in “The Emporium” and enjoy the

ice cream or meals along with their great hospitality.

After we got back to the camp ground, the weather

seemed to have turned for the better and several

folks headed to the swimming pool while others went

kayaking or canoeing on the Pocomoke River. But

soon the park authorities were closing the pool and

instructing the boaters to come back to the marina.

The entire Delmarva Peninsula was under a tornado

watch even though we had beautiful blue skies. But

this too soon passed and we had a wonderful camp

supper finishing with a campfire. It is amazing how

kids never outgrow their desire to toast marshmallows

over the campfire and then squish them with a piece

of chocolate candy between two graham crackers.

participate in. Just getting together with another

family and getting away from the household chores,

computers, and gaming systems allows the family to

enjoy each other’s company. Watching the kids laughing

and playing with their parents reminds me of a

simpler time and brought all of us closer.

The Great Peanut Tour

After a one year hiatus “The Great Peanut Tour” is

back on September 10-13. Two years ago the organizers

lost access to the Cattail Creek RV Park and

Campground just south of Emporia, Va. They tried

hosting it at another location in Emporia but it did not

work out and the tour was cancelled in 2008. This year

they regained their access to the campground and the

Tour is back on with all the great rides it had before.

Something Special!

The next morning brought about another beautiful

day with gorgeous blue skies. After breakfast and packing

out of the cabins, we headed out on a ride towards

Chincoteague Bay. This time our sons decided they

wanted to ride their singles, so once again Kim and I

got to ride on the tandem together. Woo-Hoo!

My oldest son decided he wanted to ride with the

faster riders while my younger son was not quite ready

to keep up that pace so we stayed back with him. We

had a great time riding and talking.

When we turned into the wind, we were only a couple

of miles from the mid-point stop and took the lead

and let our son draft behind us, unfortunately he

made the beginner’s mistake of getting too close and

touched his front wheel with our back wheel. He

made a gallant effort to stay up, but soon crashed. But

quickly coming up behind was another family that

had a full first aid kit and we soon had him bandaged

up. Another parent had decided to drive to the midpoint

also arrived and offered to take my son to the

lunch stop on the bay. By the time we got to the lunch

stop, my son had recovered and was now ready to eat.

While this particular event is organized under the

auspices of the PPTC, these small weekend biking

get togethers are easy to organize and wonderful to

For families the Saturday 25 mile ride cannot be beat.

The route is traffic free and flat as a pancake with

food/rest stops about every three to five miles, First

there is the peanut stop then there is the tomato stop

where you can make your own white bread sandwiches,

next is the watermelon stop followed by the pickle

stop. Finally you loop back to the peanut stop marking

another four miles back to the start.

In the morning and evening there are meals available

at the campground and live entertainment that is suitable

for the entire family. There is camping available

or numerous hotels in either Emporia or across the

North Carolina border in Roanoke Rapids.

More information about The Great Peanut Tour can

be found at www.greatpeanuttour.com.

Looking for Great Family Rides or Events

We are always looking for new rides to share, so if

you have a favorite family ride or event, please send

me an e-mail with the information and details at

kbrugman@cox.net

301.663.0007

August 2009

25

August 2009

25


CALENDAR OF EVENTS

Griffin Cycle

4949 Bethesda Ave.

Bethesda, MD 20814

(301) 656-6188

www.griffincycle.com

Road, Hybrids, Mountain, Kids

Parts & Accessories for All Makes

Trailers & Trikes

Family Owned – In Bethesda for 38 Years

FEATURING BIKES FROM:

To be listed, send information to Spokes, 5911 Jefferson Boulevard, Frederick, MD 21703 or e-mail: neil@spokesmagazine.com

For a more comprehensive list check out www.spokesmagazine.com.

AUGUST 8 – CUMBERLAND VALLEY CENTURY

The Cumberland Valley Cycling Club again hosts

this very popular (over 300 riders last year) tours of

Washington County, Md. Rides include a 26, 63 and

100 miler over low traffic roads going over stone

bridges and by green, picturesque farmscapes. Rides

start in Boonsboro, Md., about 1.5 hours from D.C.

and Baltimore. Great food! Portions of the proceeds

go to San Mar Children’s Home (last year over $2,000

was contributed). For details, or to register go to www.

bikecvcc.com

AUGUST 22 – SHOREFIRE CENTURY

Ride central Delaware and Maryland’s Eastern Shore

flat to rolling roads past farmlands in this popular

White Clay Bicycle Club series of rides (35,65 and full

century). Begins and ends at Middletown, Del., High

School. For details contact Mike Katz, shorefire@

whiteclaybicycleclub.org

AUGUST 23 – RESTON CENTURY

Starting and finishing at the Reston, Va., Town

Center, this 27th annual tradition offers rides of 34,

65 and 103 miles. Fully supported by the Reston

Bicycle Club complete with a post ride party. For

details log onto www.restonbikeclub.org or email

info@restonbikeclub.org

SEPTEMBER 5-6 – SEVEN SPRINGS

24 HOUR CHALLENGE

In its 10th year, the Subaru 24-Hour Champion

Challenge combines recreational fun and a challenging

adventure, while creating good-natured competition

for teams of friends, co-workers and individual

racers who compete for prizes and glory. The goal is

to complete as many laps as possible on the 12-mile

Seven Springs Mountain Resort, Pa., course in 24

hours. Competitors can race as a part of team or on

their own. The race begins at 12 p.m., Sat., Sept. 5,

and ends at 12 p.m., Sun., Sept. 6. Endurance, teamwork

and the ability to have fun are required! For

more information and to register call (866) 703-7625

or visit www.7springs.com.

SEPTEMBER 10-13 – GREAT PEANUT BIKE TOUR

Four great days of riding in beautiful southern

Virginia and northeastern North Carolina. Cattail

Creek Campground is the headquarters for this year’s

rides and festivities. Rides and tours designed to

appeal to all levels of cyclists. Hosted by the Emporia

Bicycle Club. For details call Robert Wrenn at 1-800-

449-BIKE (No calls after 9:00 p.m., please). E-mail

address is rcw@telpage.net, or visit www.greatpeanuttour.com

SEPTEMBER 11-13 – TOUR DE CANAL

Since its inception in 1997, this event has raised more

than $1.5 million to fund promising research and

services for those who suffer from Alzheimers. This

series of very popular rides, ranges from a challenging

but fully supported two day tour of the entire 184

mile C&O Canal beginning in Cumberland, Md., and

ending in Washington, D.C., to a 100 mile route over

the same two days, to a one day 20 mile memory ride.

Here’s your chance to do the canal with support. For

details log onto www.alz.org/nca or call (800) 728-

9255, or (703) 359-4440..

SEPTEMBER 12 – AMISH COUNTRY BIKE TOUR

Tour the bucolic farmlands of Delaware’s flat Amish

countryside in this popular 23rd annual event. Nearly

1,400 riders participate in this tour. Loops range

from 15 to 100 miles. Food & entertainment. “Surf

& Turf” packages available for the entire weekend!

Friday night kayak tour. Funds go to prostate cancer

research. Kent County Tourism (800) 233-5368; or

register at www.visitdover.com Ask for free bicycling

map of the area.

TOUR DE CANAL

SEPTEMBER 11 - 13, 2009

We’re on the MOVE to end Alzheimer’s!

20-mile Memory Ride

If you are looking for a ride you and your family can enjoy together, this is it!

*time is running out to register for the 184 mile and 100 mile rides, register now!

SEPTEMBER 12 – SKIPJACK BIKE TOUR

Cycling past some of the most beautiful wildlife,

harbors and marshlands on the Eastern Shore of

Maryland on rides of 15, 30 or 75 miles from Deal

Island Harbor in Princess Anne, Md. Sponsored by

the Deal Island/Chance Volunteer Fire Co., the rides

begin at 7:30 a.m. T Shirts for All Riders, 3 Rest Stops,

EMS Available, SAG Wagon and of course the unforgettable

brownies.

For additional information visit www.visitsomerset.com

or www.dealislandmaryland.com

Get Involved!

alz.org/nca or call 800-728-9255 • 703-359-4440

26 August 2009


SEPTEMBER 13 – SAVE-A-LIMB RIDE

Friends and supporters along with doctors and

patients of The Rubin Institute for Advanced

Orthopedics at Sinai Hospital in Baltimore are clipping

into their pedals for this third annual event and

fund raiser to benefit the Save-A-Limb Fund. In addition

to bike rides (ranging from 6 to 60 miles), runs

and hikes, former Tour de France racer Bob Roll and

Tour de France veteran Floyd Landis will be on hand

to talk with participants. For details log onto www.

savealimbride.org or call (410) 601-2483

Ride with Professional Cyclist, Floyd Landis!

Save-A-Limb Ride

Metric Century – 30 Mile – 6 Mile Family Fun Ride

Benefits the

Save-A-Limb Foundation

Register Online Today!

www.savealimbride.org

Sunday – September 13, 2009 – 8:00am – 2:00pm

Oregon Ridge Park – Hunt Valley, MD

Picnic, Fitness Fair, Kid’s Carnival & Fun

Great Gear For Cyclists...

Dual Action

Knee Strap

Patented strap takes pain

relief from knee degeneration

and overuse syndromes to

a higher level. Provides

increased support and

stability. Sizes: Sm-XL

1-800-221-1601 • www.cho-pat.com

SEPTEMBER 26-27 – RIDE IN THE HEARTLAND


Ride through the rolling countryside of Charlotte

County, Virginia, hunting grounds of the Saponi tribes

and final homes of Governor Patrick Henry (18th century),

Congressman John Randolph (19th century),

and Ambassador David Bruce (20th century). Ride on

our own “century” or “metric century” bike routes, or

choose from shorter rides of 28 railroad route (includes

treasure hunt). Meals, rest stops, SAG, optional camping

spaces, all routes marked and on paved roads.

Century includes Patrick Henry’s Red Hill. Other rides

visit either Red Hill or the Battlefield Park. Contact

ncarwile@hotmail.com or (434) 248-6407. Details and

on-line registration at www.bikeheartland.org

SEPTEMBER 26 – NORTHERN NECK RIVER RIDE

Virginia’s Northern Neck, “the Garden of Virginia,”

serves as the host for the fourth Annual Northern

Neck RiverRide. Tour this special and unique peninsula,

located between the Rappahannock and

Potomac Rivers, with 800 cycling enthusiasts and

experience the heritage, culture and incomparable

scenery that this region has to offer. Celebrate

National Century Month with an English, metric, half

or third century along the scenic back roads of the

Northern Neck. Visit www.riverride.org for details and

to register online. For inquiries, call (757) 229-0507

or email info@riverride.org.

CALENDAR continued on p.28

SEPTEMBER 13 – SOUTHERN MARYLAND CENTURY

The Indian Head 100 has routes of 16, 30, 63, and

100 miles through the scenic Potomac Heritage Area

of Southern Maryland. Register and go 7-9 a.m. from

the xxx_Spokes.qxd Village Green in 3/20/07 the Town 12:56 of Indian PM Page Head, 1 20

miles south of the Washington Beltway. Fully supported

by the Oxon Hill Bicycle and Trail Club. For

details, visit www.ohbike.org or call (301) 567-0089.

SEPTEMBER 19 – AMISH 100

Enjoy the quiet rural charm of St. Mary’s and Charles

County. Steeped in history and culture, the Amish area

of Southern Maryland is laced with quiet country roads

made for cycling. Donations support the Three Notch

Trail. Ride day registration is from 7 - 9 a.m. Visit www.

paxvelo.com or email riderunrow@yahoo.com.

The 19th annual Shenandoah Fall Foliage Bike Festival

October 16-18,2009

SEPTEMBER 19 – CEDAR RIDGE RIDE FOR YOUTH

Includes a century and metric century bicycle ride.

Registration fees vary by ride, but include: lunch,

snack/drink stops, souvenir photos, “goody” bags and

dessert. For more information, visit www.cedarridge.

org or call (301) 582-0282 x122.

SEPTEMBER 26-27 – 24 HOURS OF BOOTY

24 Hours of Booty, Inc., which runs the Official 24-Hour

Cycling Event of the Lance Armstrong Foundation and

the only 24-hour road cycling charity event in the country,

will be hosting the 24 Hours of Booty of Columbia,

Md. on the “Booty Loop” at the Gateway Business Park

from noon, Saturday, Sept. 26 to noon, Sunday, Sept.27.

Registration limited to the first 500. A registration fee

of $45 per participant and minimum $150 fund raising

are required. Proceeds from the 24 Hours of Booty

of Columbia will benefit the Ulman Cancer Fund for

Young Adults and Lance Armstrong Foundation. The

24 Hours of Booty is a non-competitive charity cycling

event that is geared for teams and individuals and is

open to participants of all ages and skill levels. For

more information, visit www.24hoursofbooty.org or call

toll-free at 1-877-365-4417.

New rides for all skill levels from easy family rides to a challenging century

Enjoy spectacular cycling in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley

For more information and to register go to: www.shenandoahbike.org

Call 540 416 1267 or Fax 540 885-0269

August 2009

27


CALENDAR continued from p.27

OCTOBER 4 – TOUR DU PORT

One of the East Coast’s most delightful inner city fun

rides, the Tour Du Port provides cyclists with a largely

car free experience in and around the most scenic

parts of Baltimore’s inner harbor and Ft. McHenry

areas. Over 1,500 cyclists converge on Charm City

for this event hosted by One Less Car. Routes range

from 10 to 22 miles. Call (410) 235-3678, or email

info@onelesscar.org for details.

OCTOBER 10 – SEAGULL CENTURY

Acclaimed as one of the best run flattest centuries

in the country, the Sea Gull has become a full

weekend of Eastern Shore riding from Salisbury

State University. Rides are also offered on Friday

and Sunday, with the century (and metric century)

sandwiched in between. With upwards of 7,000 riders,

there is NO ride day registration. For details call

(410) 548-2772; email: seagull@salisbury.edu or log

onto www.seagullcentury.org

OCTOBER 10 – SAVAGE CENTURY

The White Clay Bicycle Club hosts this popular ride from

the W.L. Gore facility in Newark, Delaware. Ride begins

at 7:30 a.m. Routes include 40,60,75 mile and full century.

For details log onto www.whiteclaybicycleclub.org

OCTOBER 11 – CIVISTA POTOMAC HERITAGE TOUR

Routes of 14, 33, 60, 80, and 100 miles start and end

in La Plata, Maryland. All routes take cyclists along

the scenic on-road bicycle route of the Potomac

Heritage Trail National Scenic Trail. Come ride for

your health and the health of those served by the

Civista Medical Center. Proceeds will benefit renovations

of the pharmacy. Cyclists will return to La Plata

to the Crossing at Casey Jones for an after-ride party

with food and entertainment. The pre-registration fee

of $30 covers rest stops, SAG support, marked routes,

cue sheets and maps, a t-shirt and other ride souvenirs,

and an after-ride party. Riders are encouraged to

pre-register to be assured of getting a t-shirt. Register

online at www.active.com or download a registration

form. Day-of-ride registration begins at 7 am and is

$35. For more information, see http://civista.org/

foundationpgs/2008_BikeTour.htm.

OCTOBER 16-18 – SHENANDOAH FALL FOLIAGE

FESTIVAL

Enjoy spectacular cycling in Virginia’s beautiful

Shenandoah Valley in this 19th annual event. All new

routes on Saturday with rides each day for all skill

levels from easy family cycling to a challenging century.

Sag support and excellent rest stops on every

route. Visit Grand Caverns (with discount) and other

scenic and historic attractions in Staunton and the

valley. Check out www.shenandoahbike.org; email:

fallbikefestival@comcast.net or call (540) 416-0267

for details.

COLUMBIA TUESDAY ROAD & IRONGIRL RIDES

Spirited Tuesday evening road rides, 25.5 miles (or 18

for Iron Girl Triathlon participants) from the parking

lot of Princeton Sports, 10730 Little Patuxent

Parkway, Columbia, Md. Ride is same as that used in the

Columbia Triathlon (25.5 mile) or IronGirl competition

(18 miles). Weather permitting. Call (410) 995-1894 or

email ttomczak@princetonsports.com for details.

WEDNESDAYS AT WAKEFIELD MTB SERIES

Mid-summer evening, June 24 to July 15 - 4-race

mountain bike race series at Wakefield Park,

Annandale, Va. With 21 categories, including 10

junior categories for males and females in 2 year

increments ages 18 and below. Three races each

night: Younger Juniors (5:30), Beginner, Jr, Masters

(6:00), Sport, Expert, Clydesdale (6:55). Fun, Fast

Singletrack. Benefits Trips for Kids Charity. Pre-register

for series at www.BikeReg.com, Info at www.

potomacvelo.com, Jim Carlson jcarlsonida@yahoo.

com; (703) 569-9875.

LUTHERVILLE WEEKLY ROAD RIDES

Lutherville Bike Shop will lead a weekly road

bike ride, leaving from the shop Mondays at 5:30

p.m. Proper riding attire required. 14-16 mph.

Approximately 30 miles A scenic road ride through

Loch Raven Reservoir and surrounding areas. We

keep the hills to a minimum and invite all riders to

the sport. Racers recovering from the weekend are

welcome as well. We’ll ride as a group and no one will

be left behind. Call the shop for details (410) 583-

8734. www.luthervillebikeshop.com

THURSDAY EVENING FREDERICK RIDES

A 15-19 mph road ride sponsored by The Frederick,

Md., Bike Doctor. Meet every Thursday at Starbucks

on 7th Street at 5:30 p.m. for a 30 mile ride. No one

will be dropped. Ride cancelled if roads are wet, if it is

raining or winds exceed 20 mph. Call (301) 620-8868

for details.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT MT. BIKE RIDES AT LOCH RAVEN

Lutherville Bike Shop will lead a weekly mountain

bike ride every Wednesday evening at 6 p.m. from

the shop. The ride will leave from the shop and go

through Loch Raven Reservoir. Distance and speed

will vary based on rider skill level. Call the shop for

details (410) 583-8734. www.luthervillebikeshop.com

SPIRITED SUNDAY ROAD RIDES

Join the folks of the Bicycle Place, just off Rock Creek

Park, every Sunday morning (beginning at 8:30

a.m.) for a “spirited” 36-40 mile jaunt up to Potomac

and back. This is a true classic road ride that runs

year round. While the pace is kept up, no one is

left behind. No rainy day rides. The Bicycle Place

is located in the Rock Creek Shopping Center, 8313

Grubb Road (just off East-West Highway). Call (301)

588-6160 for details.

BALTIMORE SATURDAY RIDE

A fun but spirited group ride through Baltimore

County every Saturday morning at 9 a.m. Depending

on turnout there are usually 2-3 different groups of

varying abilities. When the weather doesn’t cooperate,

we will have the option to ride indoors. Call Hunt

Valley Bicycles at (410) 252-3103 for more information.

BIKES FOR THE WORLD

Bikes for the World collects repairable bicycles in the

United States, for donation to charities overseas, for

productive use by those in need of affordable transport.

Note: $10/bike donation suggested to defray

shipping to overseas charity partners. Receipt provided

for all material and cash donations. Bikes for

the World is a sponsored project of the Washington

Area Bicyclist Association, a 501 c 3 non-profit charity.

Collections will take place rain or shine. For a complete

list of locations and time of collections visit www.

bikesfortheworld.org or call (703) 525-0931.

28 August 2009


THE CYCLIST'S KITCHEN by NANCY CLARK, MS, RD

COLUMNS

NUTRITION NEWS FROM THE

AMERICAN DIETETIC ASSOCIATION

If you are confused by the plethora of nutrition information

that filters into the media, please look to the

American Dietetic Association (ADA; www.eatright.

org) as a trusted resource for answers to your questions.

Members of the ADA recently convened in

Chicago to learn the latest information about food

and nutrition. The following article highlights some

of the presentation that might be of interest to active

people.

Protein

In all tissues and organs in your body, protein is

“turned over” continually, meaning that old protein is

broken down and replaced by new protein. Hence, we

need to eat adequate protein on a daily basis to maintain

health, particularly the health of the skin, liver,

brain and heart. If you fail to eat enough protein (as

can happen with a sub-optimal vegetarian diet, a very

low calorie reducing diet, or too many meatless pasta

meals), you’ll break down your muscles (a reservoir of

protein) to protect those organs.

The maximal effective single dose of protein to build

new muscle is ~35 grams of high quality protein

(milk, egg, fish, meats) at one time. While most athletes

easily eat this amount—plus more—three times

a day to fulfill their daily protein requirement, elderly

folks may not. Hence, they become weak and frail.

The bottom line: Be sure you (and your parents and

grandparents) maintain your health and vitality by

enjoying protein with each meal!

Eggs and Eyes

Carrots have long been touted as being “good for your

eyes” because carrots are a rich source of carotenoids

(precursors of vitamin A, needed for optimal eye function).

Less well known is egg yolks are also powerful

eye-health protectors. The yolk is a rich source of

two potent carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin. These

antioxidants reduce by up to 40% the risk of macular

degeneration, the leading cause in Americans of irreversible

blindness that occurs with age.

While yellow/orange fruits and vegetables (carrots,

corn, squash, orange peppers) and dark leafy greens

(spinach, kale, collards) are also good sources of

lutein and zeaxanthin, studies suggest egg yolks are

an even better source. That’s in part because the yolk

contains fat, and fat helps carotenoids to be absorbed.

(This also means you should enjoy olive oil with salads,

rather than fat-free dressing, to help absorb the

carotenoids in colorful vegetables.)

Unfortunately, in their cholesterol-consciousness,

many athletes are tossing egg yolks and eating only

the whites. Stop• You can healthfully enjoy the

whole egg—without elevating your blood cholesterol.

Numerous studies indicate consumed eggs yolks is

unlikely to alter blood cholesterol levels and increase

the risk of heart disease.

The bottom line: Please make that omelet with whole

eggs, orange peppers and spinach!

Organic foods—are they better?

Many athletes debate whether or not they should buy

organic foods. In terms of nutritional value, studies in

the U.S. suggest no significant differences, but studies

in Europe report higher amounts of nutrients,

including antioxidants. Eating a larger portion of conventionally

grown produce can resolve any potential

differences.

The bigger issue relates to protecting the soil and

limiting water pollution from pesticides and fertilizers

that seep into the ground. For those reasons, buying

organic produce is a smart choice, particularly if it

is locally grown, uses less fuel to be transported, and

supports local farmers.

If you debate whether or not to buy organic milk,

note that “organic” refers to farming practices, not to

the milk itself. According to the research presented

by Gary Rogers, PhD, there is no difference between

organic and conventional milk in terms of nutrition,

antibiotics and hormone content. Strict government

guidelines ensure that both organic and conventional

milk are safe and nutritious.

• All milk that enters dairy processors gets tested for

antibiotics, to be sure they are kept out of the food

supply. (Less than 1 milk tanker in 1,000 tests positive

for any drug, including antibiotics. Any tainted

milk gets tossed.)

• The hormone bST that helps cows produce more

milk has been extensively studied. Results indicate

no difference in milk from cows given bST and

those who did not get any.

• Pesticides are also not a concern; milk ranks among

the lowest of all agricultural products in detectable

residues. (Extremely low levels of pesticides can be

found in all foods, both organic and conventional,

because pesticides are found in all water and soil.)

• One ”problem” is organic milk often gets transported

for long distances to areas where local organic

dairy farms are not found.

The bottom line: Whenever possible, buy milk and

produce from local farmers.

Simple strategy for eating better

If you want to improve the quality of your diet, think

about one thing you could do each day to contribute

to a healthier intake. Write down your goal for the day,

then assess your level of confidence in achieving that

goal. For example, your goal might be to eat fruit with

lunch. If you are very confident you can do that, go for

it. But if you are not at all confident, take a look at the

barriers, and perhaps figure out another way to boost

your fruit intake. Banana on cereal for breakfast? Fruit

smoothie for a post-exercise recovery drink?

The bottom line: Set yourself up for success by developing

sustainable eating habits. Stop making resolutions—dietary

“shoulds”—that repeatedly fail.

Nutrition Myths

Atlanta sports dietitian Chris Rosenbloom PhD RD

CSSD addressed the following common nutrition

myths:

Is protein is the most important nutrient for athletes?

No; the best sports diet offers a foundation of carbs

(for fuel) and an accompaniment of protein (for

building muscles).

Are whole grains always healthier than refined grains?

No. Enriched refined grains are a good source of

iron, to prevent anemia, as well as folic acid, to

reduce a woman’s risk of having a baby with birth

defects.

Does drinking extra water help you lose weight?

No, but eating watery foods (soup) can help reduce

total calories.

The less fat you eat, the better?

No. The type of fat is the issue. A diet with monounsaturated

fat (olive oil) reduces the risk of diabetes

and heart disease. The fat also enhances absorption of

health-protective vitamins A, D, E and K.

Want food help?

The best dietary advice comes with a one-on-one

consultation with a sports dietitian. To find your

local expert, check out the referral network at www.

SCANdpg.org.

August 2009

29


DEPARTMENTS

MY BIKE SHOP by RON CASSIE

BICYCLE

OUTFITTERS

19 Catoctin Circle, NE

Leesburg, VA

(703) 777-6126

TWO YEARS AGO, at the start of 2007, Mark Werner

bought a bike shop in January, got married in May

and bought a house in July.

“I got the big three knocked out pretty quick,” he joked.

Then only 27, at least the wedding and home purchase

had been in the plans. The first part of the

equation – becoming a bike shop owner – came somewhat

as a pleasant surprise.

Werner had been working for Graham Reffell for six

years at the Bicycle Outfitters in Leesburg, Va. when

Reffell mentioned he was thinking about selling the

shop and retiring to Northern California.

“He was bringing people in and I thought I might

have a new boss,” said Werner, who over the years

moved between sales and mechanic duties before settling

in as the store’s manager.

“Not even shortly before he offered it to me, did I

ever think I’d take over,” Werner laughed. “The transition

happened fast. We went from talking about it, to

where I was turning the key probably six months later.”

Making the transition easier, Reffell decided to stay

on for a couple years and make the change a gradual

process. Today, Reffell, in his late 60s, still owns 25

percent of the business and works at the store parttime.

Werner owns 50 percent and Dave Ballenger,

another long-time Bicycle Outfitters employee owns

the final 25 percent.

Werner told SPOKES he expects to buy Reffell out

completely by the end of next year - “he’s already

bought his house in California,” Werner noted – with

Ballenger maintaining his quarter share and serving

as a minority partner in the shop.

Looking back at his family history, it appears Werner

was destined to own a bicycle shop one day. His parents

met while both were attending Virginia Tech and

working at a bike shop part-time in Blacksburg. Both

dad and mom have some road racing experience as

well. Mom even owns a mountain bike, and Werner

grew up riding.

“They (his parents) were very excited about the

opportunity to buy the shop,” Werner said. “Dad will

come in and help out whenever he can. And I didn’t

ask her, but my mother, who is an accountant, volunteered

to do the books. I’d been using Graham’s

accountant, but she said she wanted to do it - to be a

part of things, I think. Plus, you’ll see them both out

on the floor and answering the phones.”

At 22, Werner knew what he wanted to do after college.

Working in a bike shop was just more fun than

anything else, but ownership was no where on the

horizon, he said.

Initially, Werner said, learning the ropes and taking

reigns of the store took even more hours than he realized.

Especially as a newlywed it was challenging early on.

However, now he feels like he’s found a bit of a groove.

With ownership demands calming down, he’s hoping

to add more bike shop-led rides, do a little more local

bike safety, event support, and triathlon SAG service,

for example, as well as get involved in local bicycle

advocacy work.

30 August 2009

Currently, the shop organizes a popular 28-mile loop

road ride on Tuesday nights, a women’s Wednesday

night group ride, and a Saturday morning road

ride, typically heading north through Waterford.

In June, Bicycle Outfitters provided support for the

Broadlands (Va.) Triathlon.

Recently, Werner pointed out, Ballenger, whose fulltime

job is in IT, added a link to BikeLoudoun.com

on the Bicycle Outfitters’ website. BikeLoudoun is a

new bicycle advocacy organization, looking to make

the still-booming county more bike friendly.

Loudoun County, and the Bicycle Outfitter’s home

town of Leesburg, sits on the Washington and

Old Dominion (W&OD) Trail, 35 miles out from

Washington, D.C., on one of the most popular trails

around. The C & O Canal, just across the Potomac

River in Maryland, as well, is only 10 minutes away,

but bike commuting and road riding can be tricky

in the densely populated suburbs and ex-urbs. There

tends to be either heavy-traveled highways, such as

Route 7, or narrow - and still heavily-traveled country

roads – around Leesburg, Werner said.

At minimum, he’d like to see more signage where bike

lanes aren’t practical, and simply greater awareness

among drivers, although car drivers’ care is improving.

“I can see that driver awareness, actually, has

improved a lot in just the last 5-10 years that I’ve

been riding on the roads,” Werner said. “I think more

people today have a friend who rides, knows someone

at work who rides, or a has family member who rides,

and that makes a difference.”

Which is not to say, he doesn’t understand that in the

evenings, many Loudoun County drivers are nearing the

end of a very long commute and anxious to get home.

“It’s not all on the drivers,” Werner said. “Cyclists

shouldn’t be riding in the middle of the road or

three-abreast, either.”

A road bike, mountain bike and occasional cyclocross

competitor, Werner said that the Bicycle Outfitters’

market isn’t the high-end custom side of the business,

but rather than road cyclist, bicycle commute and

family hybrid set. Although, they do order custom

bikes and parts, and the triathlon end of the sales

business has been steadily increasing.

Repairs, Werner said, have been a central part of the

business, accounting for about 25 percent of the overall

revenue - the rest in new bike and merchandise

sales. Where in the past, he said, there was occasionally

a two-week wait for repairs, they’ve added capacity

and now can handle all the work that comes in the

door in a timely fashion. Werner maintains service is

absolutely the key to success.

“We have people who drive past a lot of bike shops to

come to us,” he said.

Along with Reffell, Werner and Ballenger, all

immersed in the local bike business scene for years,

Dawn Graham has been a fixture at the shop for 20

years. She handles much of the ordering and managing

duties at the repair end of things.

“I’d be lost without her,” Werner said. “If there is a

tough repair that nobody gets or information needed

about a certain part or product, we take it to Dawn

and she’ll know what to do.”

Justin Hanger serves as the lead mechanic.

But, just as likely, especially on the weekends, you’ll

see “mom and dad” Bruce and Donna Werner in the

shop, working and swapping stories with the regulars.

“It’s a cool feeling to see them in there, knowing

they started dating while they were working in a

bike shop together,” said son Mark, recalling that his

mother used to do college homework at the store in

Blacksburg on slow nights and weekends while dad

turned wrenches.

“They just come in on their own. I’ll look in and there

is dad helping a customer or selling a bike. It’s neat.”

EDITOR’S NOTE:

A good independent bicycle shop still remains one of the

treasured resources of bicycling–among the best places

to learn about places to ride, meet locals to ride with, and

learn about new products. Oh, and they also do a super

job fixing the bike stuff you break. “My Bike Shop” is a

regular feature of SPOKES in which we give you a look into

a local shop and the folks behind it.


IT MUST

BE THE

BIKE.



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