Thursday, March 31, 2011

Blue Monday



"So behave that the odor of your actions may enhance the general sweetness of the atmosphere, that when we behold or scent a flower, we may not be reminded how inconsistent your deeds are with it; for all odor is but one form of advertisement of a moral quality, and if fair actions had not been performed, the lily would not smell sweet. The foul slime stands for the sloth and vice of man, the decay of humanity; the fragrant flower that springs from it, for the purity and courage which are immortal."

(Henry David Thoreau)

No Motors: Predictions Sure To Go Wrong



Write this down...

1...Phillipe Gilbert
2...Heinrich Haussler
3...Stijn Devolder

One Step Beyond



As March draws to a close, Mongo is lamenting the fact that this month has so few posts to show for it. We all know the reason, but every month since December of '07, Mongo has managed an average of 20-40 entries. While I do enjoy hearing myself write, it is more the cathartic action of the actual task that I am most missing. Getting lost in words and ideas of one's own creation is one of my own personal pleasures. (Along with my Guinness-certified, world record collection of pre-digital adult films)

So...instead of "talking the talk", Mongo has been out there "walking the walk". I've been riding as much as the weather and my work schedule allow. My mountain bike, trainer, and road bike have all seen extensive action, and along with the dieting, which has helped drop close to twenty pounds, there is a distinct possibility that I am riding at the highest overall level of my life. I don't want to jinx myself, because I definitely still have a ways to go, but I fully expect to be "in the mix" near the front of the peloton by the Summer.

Monday, March 28, 2011

AK47 Update: Two Wins And Counting

Andreas Klöden (RadioShack) on the podium

(Photo:CyclingNews)

After what would be considered a bad mountain stage for Kloden in Stage 1 of the Criterium International, where he got dropped by the rapid accelerations of the Schleck brothers, he bounced back in the final stage TT and took the win over Bradley Wiggins.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Short And Sweet



Let me just start off by saying that having no computer really sucks! Though I don't spend a considerable amount of time on the computer, the inability to write this blog or view porn when I want to has put a cramp in my style. I would normally be expounding with great bravado on the early season of Pro racing, with it's many foils and heroes, along with detailing my exploits at the 23/2300 Hammerfest, but for the time being...that ain't gonna happen. Instead, Mongo will have to make due with snippets of wit and information when I can get some writing done.

Mongo is glad that the UCI has appealed the Contador case to the CAS. The Spanish investigation was a sham, and I'm confident that whenever a verdict is reached, the result will include a two year suspension for the "Frito Bandito". Unfortunately, we'll have to stomach his results this Spring and Summer as the CAS moves very slowly in their deliberation.

As for Mongo's own cycling exploits, let's just say I'm getting better and better every week. My new Blue RC7 has really helped elevate my game. I won the Cat 6/7 "Enemy Bike Shop" ride for the fifth time this past Saturday, had my first successful smackdown ride on the new whip on Sunday, and at the 23/2300 Hammerfest on Monday, Mongo put in both a strong and respectable performance...culminating in a sneaky fourth place finish in the Sprint against a very strong field.

Monday, March 21, 2011

The Power Of A Beautiful Woman








Mongo has finally entered the semi-rarefied air of being the proud owner of a 100% carbon fiber bicycle...and a really good one, at that. Thanks once again to my good buddy and second hand equipment supplier, "Goodwill" Tom, Mongo can now show up to any ride or race and be as "douchey" as I want to be.

Mongo would also like to acknowledge supermodel, Irina Shayk, who, thanks to Mongo's "Juice", became the S.I. Swimsuit Issue covergirl for 2011. In return, her appearences on this blog have increased my readership by over 1000 visits. Though I appreciate the interest, Mongo tries never to "Jump The Shayk" with my content. The only person I pander to is myself. Therefore, Mongo will tirelessly scan the Internet for a new young beauty interested in a mutually beneficial relationship.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

One Out Of Three Will Get You To The Show

2011 Milan-San Remo podium (l-r): Fabian Cancellara, 2nd; Matt Goss, 1st; Philippe Gilbert, 3rd













(Photo:CyclingNews)

Mongo can't wait to watch the replay tomorrow on VS of today's Milan-San Remo race. Matt Goss has it going on this year. I hope it's all on the up and up, because he seems like a true superstar in the making. Mongo's boy, Phillipe Gilbert, finishes in third...exactly where I predicted. Unfortunately, my first and second place predictions, Haussler and Boasson Hagen, finished eighteenth and thirtieth respectively.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Damn!

Tony Hawk.

It looks like "Mr. 900", who just got a divorce from his "3rd" wife, has been shacking up with his best friend and business partner's wife. Woods, Sheen...Hawk?

Roundup...And Predictions Sure To Go Wrong

Paris-Nice GC podium: Andreaas Kloden (RadioShack), Tony Martin (Team HTC - Highroad), Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky)(Photo:Bettini/CyclingNews)

Unfortunately, during Mongo's absence, there were some strong races contested that were bereft of my daily prose. Instead of recapping what you already know, I'll toss in a few observations and give my "Stone-Cold-Lead-Pipe" locks for the podium at Milan-San Remo.

First of all, how about my boy, AK47, coming in second at Paris-Nice. And...winning a stage along the way. This bodes well for the "Bruyneel Triangle" come Tour time. With Machado, Brajkovic, and the "Li'l Bronze Medalist" all riding well, don't count out RadioShack in the big races.

Then there's Cadel "The Face Spinnaker" Evans winning Tirreno-Adriatico against a very strong field after seemingly just getting off his couch for the first time this year. If he found a new Vegemite supplement over the holidays, expect to see more of "The Crying Game" this season.

Write this down!...1st: Heinrich Haussler  2nd: Edvald Boasson Hagen  3rd: Phillipe Gilbert

Prisoner Of Technology




As those of you who rise every morning and eagerly anticipate what new brilliance will greet them on this blog have probably noticed, Mongo has been a little light on the posts lately. This has nothing to do with lack of content, quite the opposite, I am overflowing with observations and bravado, but...my computer broke.

When a computer breaks, it doesn't fall off the desk and break that way, it just stops working. Sometimes it can be traced to a virus, or coffee spilled by a certain cat who was up late cruising the feline chat rooms, but this time I believe it was just her time to go. So...I ain't got no computer.

Most of my technological needs can be handled through my phone, but writing this blog is not one of them. I am in the process of talking to a guy who knows a guy who is positive that he can probably get me a sweet deal on the newest and the latest. Mongo's going to ride my "Soprano" connection and see where it takes me, but if it falls through...Best Buy here I come!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Sneaking Up On Me Like A Pygmy Ninja: It's Hammerfest Time






















It was kind of a crappy weekend of cycling for Mongo. The weather decided to be cold, wet, and shitty, and I only managed to get in a legitimate training ride today. On Saturday it rained all day, but I was able to do a solid hour of intervals on the trainer in the garage. It was kind of cool to have the the garage door open and the rain pouring down while I cranked the music and stared at myself in the mirror. Sunday dried out, but the temperature never crested forty five degrees and the wind was blowing a solid 15-25 mph, so even though I tooled around for twenty miles, it wasn't enjoyable or beneficial. Finally, today, Mongo put in a strong circuit on the 23/2300 Hammerfest course.

A week from today marks the return of the SBMNR. It's going to be a good season. Everyone's faster and stronger, I'm sure there'll be new talent in the peloton, and as of right now, everyone's even. Mongo is approaching this season differently. I'm much more in tune with my strengths and weaknesses on the bike, and unfortunately, this ride doesn't really suit my strengths at all...but that's okay. I'm not basing my successes and failures on this ride alone. I've put in the work over the Winter and have seen dramatic improvements in my overall fitness on the bike, but as soon as I hit a course with slow transitions and steep, fast, climbs...it's over! But...Mongo is getting better, and I'll be looking to shake things up in the peloton where I can.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Seriously...Stop Touching My Leg

If you had to start a cycling team with one rider, Phillipe Gilbert wouldn't be a bad choice. This classy, Classics and single stage racer doesn't get much dap from Mongo, but he really doesn't need it. In a tune-up for the "Battle of the Ardennes" Classics, "PG-13" (I'm trying that nickname on for size) beats "The Little Red Corvette" and "Really...You Were World Champion?" to take the win at the Strade Bianche.

(Photo:CyclingNews)

I Don't Care: You're Dead To Me

(Photo:CyclingNews)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

A Half Century: What The Hell Was That?






















Mongo has been "trainer-only" for the past couple of days, so I was really looking forward to an outside ride of some sort today. I have been so focused on low/medium mileage, high intensity rides lately, that I decided to do fifty miles in the 130-140 HR zone. This is a good fat burning range, and I've got some fat that needs burning.

I had an enjoyable but uneventful ride out to the Rambo Nursery and back on the SCT. And by uneventful, I mean I had a 15-20 mph headwind the whole way back. It was brutal! Luckily, all my work on the trainer with cadence and leg speed really paid off. I was able to settle into a rhythm and attack the wind. Much like Charlie Sheen, Mongo is a "wind-winner".

After a quick stop at the shop to pick up my new supply of SportLegs and have a chat with "Almost Married" Tom, and "You Owe Me Five Bucks" MC-Lean, Mongo still had a couple of miles left to go back to my house. I was literally climbing the last hill of the last mile of my eventual fifty when an extremely strange thing happened...I was passed!

Any serious cyclist worth his salt can analyze and break down another cyclist in an instant. Equipment, clothing, physique, effort...all of these factors contribute to the assessment. How someone looks when they pass you is much more telling than how they look unloading their Colnago in the parking lot. Here's the rub...the guy that passed me caused my brain to shut down.

This dude looked like he came straight out of the R.E.I. catalogue. He was riding some sort of Cannondale road bike with a frame pump, a way oversized seat-bag, combo, spd/flat pedals, and there may have even been a fender thrown in there. He was wearing baggy shorts over the lycra, and his jersey was a loose-fitting, club-style, brown color. His helmet was cocked to one side...and he was flying! My brain was in an endless loop of error messages.

Though I was exhausted and almost home, there was no way I was going to let this guy get the best of me. The trouble was, he wasn't looking back like he was worried and he was riding like his house was on fire. I had to kick it in or this guy was going to gap me. The whole time I was chasing him, I was amazed at how fast this bad cliche was going. It took me much longer to catch and pass him than I want to admit. I went by him like I had a few more gears left, but in reality, I had nothing when I finally turned off into my neighborhood. I guess you just never know. As a wise man once told me..."It ain't the arrow, it's the Indian."