Thursday, November 30, 2006

Lance to ride again

I just saw that Lance Armstrong is planning on racing again. Mountain biking this time

Click here to read the article

2007 USA Pro Tour

The 2007 USA Cycling Professional Tour has been announced:

Feb. 18-25: AMGEN Tour of California – California (2.HC) (Disco and CSC confirmed to participate!!)
Apr. 7: U.S. Cycling Open – Richmond, Va. (1.1)
Apr. 16-22: Tour de Georgia – Georgia (2.HC)
June 3: Commerce Bank Lancaster Classic – Lancaster, Pa. (1.1)
June 7: Commerce Bank Reading Classic – Reading, Pa. (1.1)
June 10: Commerce Bank International Championship – Philadelphia, Pa. (1.HC)
June 17: Austin Men’s Invitational – Austin, Texas (1.1)
June 23: Saturn Rochester Twilight Criterium – Rochester, N.Y. (1.2)
June 30-July 7: Larry H. Miller Tour of Utah – Utah (2.2)
Aug. 19: USA Cycling Professional Criterium Championships – Downer’s Grove, Ill.
Sept. 1: The Cliffs USA Cycling Professional Time Trial Championships – Greenville, S.C.
Sept. 3: The Cliffs USA Cycling Professional Road Championships – Greenville, S.C.
Sept. 8: Univest Grand Prix – Souderton, Pa. (1.2)
Sept. 11-16: Tour of Missouri – Missouri (2.1)
Sept. 15: Tour de Leelanau – Traverse City, Mich. (1.2)

And just because it is awesome here is a sexy picture from the World track championships
Check out that gear ratio!

Monday, November 27, 2006

Forget upgrades!

"Don't buy upgrades, ride up grades." - Eddy Merckx



30 seconds - kabloowie!

More reason to not worry about upgrading. It's the hills that should rise, not the price of your bike!!!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

PCC took part in the Dirty Dozen!

Representatives of PCC in the Dirty Dozen - Bill and Gordon!

Bill rode with a cold - but finished strong!

One of the steepest climb - Logan St

The INFAMOUS 37% Canton St. - it's harder than it seemed!

Da Man and the founder of the event - Danny Chew

Finished with a smile - albeit a weary one!

Friday, November 24, 2006

Skill Clinic Sessions Review

I'm so glad we had these skill clinic sessions. I mean, I've read Harrison (2004) and Baker's (2004) books on road bike skills and tactics, and tried to apply them to my team practice back in Taiwan. But as comprehensive as the authors tried, it's not like actually seeing them in live. And Corley and the offices did an excellent job in introducing the skills bit by bit, without overwhelming us or hitting us with too difficult a skill. So, in order to show my gratitude to their hard work, I want to post a short review of what we did in the past few weeks: (feel free to add something or to comment)

1. Paceline
a. Single paceline
In group of 4, rotate either clockwise of counter-clockwise whenever the leading person rides half of the track. Maintain a speed of 15 mile/hr until everyone is comfortable with the skill.
b. Double paceline type A
In group of 6, ride in 2 columns of 3, riders on the left side rotate counter-clockwise and ones on the right side rotate clockwise whenever the leading persons ride half of the track. Maintain a speed of 15 mile/hr until everyone is comfortable with the skill.
c. Double paceline type B
In group of unlimited number of riders, ride in 3 columns of same number of riders, riders on the left-most side rotate counter-clockwise and ones on the right-most side rotate clockwise whenever the leading persons ride half of the track. Maintain a speed of 15 mile/hr until everyone is comfortable with the skill.

2. Bumping
a. Riding abreast
In pairs, ride with shoulders or elbows resting on each other. Riders pushed against should try to protect his or her handle bar by reaching out shoulders or elbows to counter the force. This skill practice must be done on grassy field in case of falling. I found a short film through this link: (I don't think we should be trying to make the partner fall, though)Boston Beanpot Skill Clinic
b. Riding with crossing the wheels
In pairs, ride with front wheel crossing the other's rear wheel. Try to maintain control when bumping with the other's rear wheel by steering into the partner's rear wheel. This skill practice must be done on grassy field in case of falling.

3. Cornering
a. Regular
With moderate speed, turn the handle bar to the direction of the turn and complete the cornering. Each rider ride on his own and maintain a distance which one can stop completely before hitting the others. This skill practice should be done in a 90-degree turn both left and right, and the surface should be free of debris or obstacles.
b. Counter-steering
With faster speed (which in races more likely to be), lean the bike to the direction of the turn, handle bar slightly to the opposite direction of the turn, weight on the outside pedal with the outside pedal at the lowest position, and complete the cornering. This skill practice should be done in a 90-degree turn both left and right, and the surface should be free of debris or obstacles. Riders should increase the speed gradually once they are comfortable with the previous speed.
c. Wet-surface cornering
With moderate speed, lean the bike slightly to opposite direction of the turn with saddle brushing the outboard thigh, turn the handle bar to the direction of the turn, weight slightly to the direction of the turn with pedals paralleled, and complete the cornering. This prevents wheels from sliding out in wet or unsatisfactory corner by increasing the contact surface of the wheels. This skill practice should be done in a 90-degree turn both left and right, and the surface should be free of debris or obstacles.
d. Cornering with a partner
In pairs, ride shoulder to shoulder into the corner. Riders on the inside of the turn should yell: "inside!", while riders on the outside of the turn should yell: "outside!" This is for preventing people from steering into your cornering path.

Also, the communication skill is vital during practice or race. For instance, if the leading person is riding too fast and tearing apart the group effort, riders behind should yell at him/her to slow down.
And in real life, I found the paceline skills not quite useful for the team when there were wide gaps of fitness levels. Because whenever there was a surge, team members of lower fitness got left behind and were never seen again until the end, which wasn't helpful. So I asked Dan what he thinked about the use of paceline skill practice, he answered: "It will be tremendously helpful to making people comfortable with riding in groups during the race." Marvelous answer! I've never thought of that. Because theoretically, paceline is used when the team wants to:
a. Position before cornering
b. Position before climbing
c. Leading the sprint
d. Chase back the escape or peloton
So, in theory, every domestiques (team members other than team leaders for the race) should be able to contribute to the effort - I don't see the point of practicing paceline skills if they get left behind early in the race. But now Dan really raise a VERY good point for practicing paceline - you want to know how to ride a paceline BEFORE entering a race, so you won't get so nervous when riding with a bunch of people. And afterward, when most people have high level of fitness (including me - I'm still recovering from my knee surgery), we can really use paceline skills to cause TERROR to the other teams! (No…I don’t mean by crashing and taking down the whole field with us :P)
by Gordon Huang

References (these are really good books, I especailly recommend Harrison's book - it's written for building an amateur team; both can be bought at

Baker, A. (2004). Strategy and Tactics for Cyclists. San Diego: Argo Publishing.
Harrison, D. (2004). Professional Road Race Tactics for Amateur Cycling Teams. Chapel Hill: RBR Publishing Company

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Shit happens...

It's one of those days that bad things come simultaneously...
I was getting out of my place with a foggy brain from staying up late for assignments. When I was turning into Neville from Center, perhaps it's because of the wet road or I was carrying too much speed, I fell heavily on my left side. Although it didn't result in serious injury, I got road rash on my elbow and knee, as well as contusion to my leg muscles, which were enough to keep me from ridding hard for a week - that really sucks!
However, that's not the end of the story. After getting myself patched up, I continued to Panther hollow trail, thinking that I still got 15 mintues to get to the lab - hasty, but I could still get there on time. But then, I found that I got a flat tire!
So, I was standing by the trail, trying to fix the flat tire with half-frozen hands (it was 30 degree that morning), while having throbbing pain in my elbow and knee from the fall...I ended up half an hour late.
I went out my place to the lab a bit late the next morning, only to find - in utter astonishment - I got another flat tire! It turned out that I missed a very tiny hole when patching the tube, so the air leaked out gradually during the night. So, I was late again.
The morale of the story: Practice your tube-fixing skill - you never know under what cicumstances that you are going to use it! And check the punctured tube in the water when you get the chance - you may miss a tiny hole no matter how careful you are.


This is rediculous, thought you had good bike handling skills??

Backwards no handed wheelies?
No handed wheelies with someone standing on your shoudlers???

Monday, November 20, 2006


Does it seem like a kick in the pants to anyone else that we're forbidden from using any Pitt liscenced logos or text on our jerseys, but the school can make money off liscencing them to companies that make jerseys being sold to the general public? Just thought I'd throw that out there. P.S. ours looks better anyway.

Pitt Jerseys

Nashbar is selling licensed Collegiate Jerseys Here is the PITT one (Kinda lame in my opinion)

Friday, November 17, 2006

Man, who else is jealous

If I had to do it all over again, I'd have started riding while I was in diapers and made sure I got into this school...check it out.

Chocolate Milk!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Panther Cycling Club

We all need to make sure we have our skillz down, especially the "raise your hands in victory skill." We don't wanna be like this guy:

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Ride a Bike Save Mother Earth

Check out this page on performance bike about cycling and the environment. there are some cool statistics. Also I have a coupon code for $20 off a purchase of $50 or more from this site so if anyone wants to buy something let me know I'll send the code your way

By the way, I want a road bike with grip shift like this sweet gem! what a steal!

Best part is it only ways 29 pounds Thanks walmart!

Yes I have too much free time at work

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

things about cross trianing buddies and triathlons (I know dan...I know)

So winter will be pretty much officially upon us soon and I'm sure many of us have been hitting it hard most or all of the spring, summer and fall. And while I agree wholeheartedly with Dan's comment "There's no excuse not to be riding a bike" (roughly paraphrased and true, given road, cross, mountain biking and the good old trainer as diverse options for the off-season), burnout is an evil, evil thing. There is no worse feeling than not being excited everyday to ride a bike.
Once the temperatures drop out of this nice low 50's range we have going now, many days will be either a bit chilly and/or short to go for the rides that make the dramatic improvements we all want; sometimes winter is a maintenance of the aerobic system.
For both the great aerobic workout and the importance of keeping workout routines fresh in order to avoid burnout, cross-training (excercises featuring different sports) can be a great idea.
I have recently adopted a triathlon training program (this is the part Dan hates) so many of my days are taken up by double workouts that include running and swimming in addition to the five, or sometimes four days on the bike. I also like to work in a day at the gym with some leg weights.
If anyone out there is interested in cross-training or just triathlons, I would love to have a running, swimming or gym buddy to make things a bit more interesting and fun. Drop me a line so we could get something going, even if it's just a day a week or whatever. Thanks a lot and above all (so dan isn't mad at me), always keep riding!

Monday, November 13, 2006

Trail system

Here are two good articles from the Post Gazette about the trail system expansion in pittsburgh
This one talks a lot about overall what is being done and talks about the new hot metal bridge (won't be done for a year unfortunatly). But it will have an over-pass that connects directly with the "jail tail." Looks like good things are coming. It also mentions that they are in talks with sandcastle to connect the southside trail to the waterfront trail!
This one talks about the county's plan to expand the systen to 100 MILES (whoah) of trails up and down all three rivers. This issue is coming up for vote in 2 weeks at the county meeting, maybe we can as a club go to the meeting or even send a letter to council?

Apparently only 9 miles in the entire county are still privately owned which would complete Allegheny county's section of the allegheny passage (the trail to cuberland MD, which connects with the trail to DC)

enjoy the reading hopefully you are as excited as I am!


Saturday, November 11, 2006

Cycling for Peace & Environmental Protection: The 2-wheel REVOLUTION!

Don't you hate it when you stop to fix a flat only to get spit on by a camel? Me too. I guess thats the nice thing about Pittsburgh (aside from great hills) - the fact that we don't hafta worry too much about those saliva-savvy desert dwellers.

Anyway, I'm posting to see if anyone else may be interested in joining me on the greatest ride of your life. This will be my third time participating on the Arava Institute/ Hazon "Israel Ride" - a 320 mile (512 kilometer - get used to metric!) bike excursion through the Negev desert. Its a 5-day saga, featuring full support along the way. That means airfare, hotels, rental bikes, are included. Security and a crew of bike mechanics follow at all times.

This is a major fundraiser for a progressive environmental school based in the Israeli desert which provides the education for the future environmental leaders of Israel, Jordan and Egypt. They are focused as much on forging a future of peace and cooperation as they are in securing the environmental future for the mid-east. Truly a great cause!

Be warned: the fundraising obligation attached is quite large, but again, it goes to a worthy cause and the long sweeping switchback descent into the dead sea (the very LOWEST point of elevation on earth) makes all the hard work well-worth it! Check out the ride's website at for more info, and don't hesitate to ask me about what it was like... Ride on, Panther Cyclists!

Friday, November 10, 2006

this was easy.
PCC is now cool, too.

High speed chase
Check out the second video, apparently they overlayed the bike image over a motorcycle. Still pretty cool though.