MyTeamCar.net services are back in action!
Yup, back from a brief vacation in Colorado to spend time with family and catch a couple stages of the USPro Cycling Challenge.
Boy, a pretty exciting race. Not just because my favorite team won it, but because much of it was played out on roads I've ridden. While Colorado is high, most of the roads aren't all that steep. The Tour organizers went way out of there way to put in some not only high altitude climbs, but some pretty steep ones as well.
I did ride a few times while out there but the only notable one was riding back to Winter Park from the Stage 3 Sprint in Kremmling, CO. What a great place to watch them blow through. Kremmling is out in the middle of nowhere and sits right next to the Colorado River. A cool but very small town that rolled out the red carpet for the race. It was great seeing many of the residents and all of the grade school and high school students lining the street ringing cow bells as the break and then the peloton blazed by.
I drove out to the sprint line venue with the family and then rode back on what was supposed to be a shortcut. I knew the road was dirt but I didn't expect it to be so rough and steep. The road (CR55), is indeed a shortcut if you're in a jeep or monster truck. On a bicycle, however, it was harsh and way slow. Of course, Google claimed it was a great bicycle route and far shorter than staying on the smoothly paved Hwy 40 route. Well, all I can tell you is CR55 is a beast. It starts out real nice and smooth just on the outskirts of a small town called Hot Sulphur Springs. However, the road quickly starts going up and got rougher and rougher due to the size of the gravel and all kinds of washboards. The Strava profile really tells the tale. I don't think many road bikes do this route so I suspect the few Strava KOM's and PRs are from mountain bikes. I pinch flatted twice going down the back side of the climb and ended up having to go slow to avoid another flat. Once I got back down to Hwy 40 I was pretty thrashed. Do not attempt this route on a road bike, it's not fun for the average bear!
Colorado was great. I got in a few rides and got to see two stages of the Tour go by. In fact, I drove out to the start of Stage 6 and got some pics of that, then drove out to near the entrance to the Big Thompson River canyon, which the race went up to get to Estes Park. I then went back to the house, ate lunch, and rode the bike into Ft Collins to watch the finish. Sadly, I missed the finish sprint due to crowds. I thought I'd get some shots at the 4K sign and then try to beat them back to the start/finish. I made it, but the crowd was huge and I couldn't get through to the line. Oh well, I'm sure I'll see that finish someday. Here's a gallery of pics I took, including the two stages I attended.
The shot here is near the top of CR55. The downhill side was way harsher and steeper. In fact, I doubt if one could get up in that direction on a road bike. Going down on a road bike is quite an adventure in both flat mitigation and crash avoidance. When you flat in these parts, you tend to look over your shoulder a lot for mountain lions, snakes, and bears. I was pretty confident no team cars were passing my way anytime this century.
Okay, back to biz. As you may know, I finally got my new site to a point where I can at least put it out there. I worked on it quite a bit in Colorado and some of the features below are getting close to being ready. I'm leaving them out there to keep me focused on the goals:
- Customer Info/Preferences Updates
- Emergency service requests and problem reporting
- Improved Service Scheduling
- Event Information and Archive
- Online Products & Accessories Orders
- Classified Wanted/Trade/For Sale Ads
The most important feature is allowing you to login and update your customer info, preferences, etc. After that, I'll work on a better communications channel for reporting problems after service. Many of you are just too nice and don't report problems to me promptly. As I always stress: if there is anything at all wrong with your bike after a service, please let me know immediately! I will drop what I'm doing and get to you ASAP.
That said, I need a mechanism on the site to facilitate reporting both major issues and less critical things that I need to know about. If you're not completely satisfied and confident in my service, then I'm not doing my job and I need to know about it.
While in Colorado I think I got the Classifieds features working well enough to be useful and easy to place ads. I understand my site isn't Craig's List or eBay, but I do have a good number of customers and the site is online and available to search engines. Of course, it still needs work, but it does support submitting an ad complete with images. Please keep this in mind if you're selling or looking for something cycling related. You can submit ads here.
I'm placing orders again Wednesday afternoon. Please let me know if you need anything.
All kinds of road racing events this weekend, from track on Friday night, to criterium racing on Saturday and Sunday. In fact, Sunday is the State Criterium Championship. Saturday is the Red Kite Criterium Series finale. As usual, I'm well off form for a good podium spot in either, but I'll be there. Crits are like a Smart Phone Upgrade, you never know what you're going to get. :)
Here's the NCNCA schedule. Good luck to all you racing or participating in the coming weekend's events.
Race Results: NCNCA, Blog Coverage
Wahoo!! MyTeamCar.net is very excited to announce that it is now a authorized Wahoo Fitness dealer. Thanks to long-time customer, Sam Wilson of Alto Velo, I applied for a dealership account based on his inquiry into the new Wahoo KICKR "wheel-off" trainer. Much like the Lemond Revolution, the power-measuring Wahoo KICKR is iPhone-based and actually even better than the Revolution. Sam has had a rough couple of seasons recently and is looking forward to 2014 by getting in some serious off-season training using the latest in trainer technology, the Wahoo KICKR.
Oh, and if you don't want the iPhone on your handlebar or stem, Wahoo offers a cool little computer called the "RFLKT" (Reflect), much smaller than the Garmin or iBike and displays all the pertinent info wireless from your iPhone.
Wahoo Fitness, located in Atlanta, GA., connects iOS devices and smartphones to your favorite fitness activities-running, biking, and gym going. Wahoo Fitness’ award winning products also include its Wahoo Run/Gym Pack, which adds heart rate training to your iPhone, and its Wahoo Bike Case, which simultaneously protects your phone and connects it to the sensors on your bike. For more information on Wahoo Fitness, please visit www.wahoofitness.com. The KICKR currently supports the iPhone4S and iPhone 5 using Bluetooth 4.0 or ANT+ protocols. Though, I'm told there are other options for the iPhone4.
Of course, Sam is getting a pretty good deal on his KICKR, being the first customer to order and start the whole venture. However, all of my customers can enjoy extremely competitive pricing and free shipping (for a limited time) on this cool new trainer. I'll match or beat any reputable offer you can find out there. In addition, I'll stock parts and accessories to provide the industry's best local support for Wahoo products. And, no, you won't find the KICKR on Amazon or eBay.
Some of you have asked about my new monthly services. I've finally posted some details about these new service on my site. These services are intended for the serious "working" cyclist that needs their bike(s) ready for action, all the time.
Using this new service means you won't have to worry about the readiness or mechanical condition of your bike(s). I will keep everything in top working order; rotate tires, perform basic tuning and adjustments, and keep you abreast of the status of all preventative and remedial maintenance that may be required.
The main purpose of the service is to make sure that your bikes are always in good working order and all preventative maintenance occurs--regularly--before expensive remedial maintenance is necessary and you can't ride or fail to finish an important event.
Of course, the fee will only cover service and does not include items like tubes, tires, chains, brake pads, bar tape, etc. No, I don't just replace items at my whim, I replace stuff, if required, based on your service intervals and expected riding activity in between.
The way that I work this service now is with Strava. My current monthly customers log all their activity on Strava and I follow them to see what they are doing on the bike, etc. This allows me to better judge preventative maintenance needs and make sure the bike is always ready when you are.
There's a lot more to this new service than I've highlighted above. Please click here for pricing and details. More to come soon! If this type of service sounds interesting and seems like a good fit for you, please let me know and we'll get a service plan and schedule together for you.
Check out the new FC50T-2. A very versatile aero tubular configuration at a weight low enough to be quite effective even in more hilly events. If you can't afford a complete quiver of wheels, a 50mm set like the FC50T-2 is a great choice. The FC50T-2 provides an extremely lite wheelset (1380kg) with outstanding aerodynamic benefits. And, of course, they're tubular rims, which means comfort and maximum handling confidence.
I'm also in the process of building a couple of test wheels for some planned new products in 2013. I didn't get much interest in the new carbon/alloy rims that are now available. However, I intend to build a front 38mm wheel to evaluate. So look for that wheel on some of the local group rides in the coming weeks. The second test wheel will be a new full carbon clincher rear utilizing Basalt braking surfaces. I'll likely build this test wheel in a 38mm configuration also and test the two together.
A reminder that I stock many items you all use everyday and every week. If you need tires, tubes, sealant, liners, bar tape, cleats, brake pads, etc., please let me know. I will deliver to you at home, workplace, or wherever you are while I'm out and about on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. I also attend most of the road race events around here and can deliver product and accessories to you there.
Again, don't forget about my Spot Tune-up Service. This is a cheap and convenient way to keep your bike rolling smoothly and efficiently. I find you and dial-in brake and shift cables and take care of any minor issues that can be resolved onsite. Only $30 and extremely convenient.
REMEMBER: I have many items on-hand and I can deliver very quickly. I tend to carry tubes, tires, chains, cassettes, bar tape, bearings, brake pads, and other common consumable items in my vehicles. So that kind of stuff is always available extremely quickly. Just let me know what you need and I'll get it to you ASAP.
PLEASE NOTE: MyTeamCar.net customers enjoy competitive pricing from all my suppliers. The list prices are not necessarily what you'll pay. If you know that the price is higher than your local dealer or favorite online retailer, just shoot me the link or let me know. I will match any reputable price out there.
I can usually get just about anything. If you need things quickly, just mention the specifics. I can get most things in my hands overnight, next-day, or two-day, it just costs more for shipping. And, yes, you will receive tracking info as soon as I receive it.
Okay, shut-up and ride!