Friday, October 16, 2009

A Few of My Favorite Things...

As I ease into my second season of cyclocross racing, I'm accumulating a mental list of some things that seem to work well for me, or, things that I just think are pretty damn cool. So from time to time, when creativity fails me, I'll post a few of them and the reasons I think they are top-shelf (this just so happens to be one of those times).

Challenge Fango Open Tubulars

Challenge Fango, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways:
  1. They grip in the corners like a sonuvabitch
  2. Supple as all get out
  3. They look cool
  4. They corner like they are on rails
  5. They are as close as I'll get to tubulars this season
  6. Did I mention how well they corner?

Mad Alchemy Medium Embrocation

Ahhh... Just cracking the jar and getting a whiff of this potent elixir conjures up images of run-ups, barriers and cow bells. It is to cyclocross what Vicks is to chest congestion. In the middle of the summer, my wife has caught me huffing this stuff in my basement, hoping for some sort of 'cross hallucination.

  • 20-30 minutes pre-race: Rub on legs for 5 minutes or so, really massage it in - it's also good for feet, lower back, hands (just watch it when you go for the pre-lineup pee...)
  • Enjoy the blissful warmth!
  • Remove with a dry towel and baby wipes
  • Enjoy the after-burn...

Challenge Latex Cyclocross Tubes

Before you go thinking I'm sponsored by Challenge or something, I'm not. I bought and tried all this stuff on my own. Took a chance. And, in this case, it paid off. These tubes are really light and supple. The best part is, they are available in 'cross tire sizes. You can shave about 100g off each wheel over regular butyl tubes. The ride quality seems improved, but where I noticed it most was accelerations.
This is probably the next best thing to actually having tubulars.

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