Sam Schultz of The Cycling House
Racing By Sam Schultz of Schultz Brothers Racing
After kicking it in style in Missoula for the last two and a half weeks, it’s time to get back to work/play (in my profession you can pretty much use the terms interchangeably).
I am sitting in the airport getting ready to fly out for my second Europe trip of the season. This one is a little longer than the first and I’ll be gone for 4 weeks. The first race of the trip is a World Cup in Vallnord, Andorra (Andorra is a tiny country between Spain and France for all the non-geography buffs out there). It looks like the race is at a pretty cool ski resort up in the mountains, so it should be interesting. After that, I jump on a flight up to Fort William, Scotland for another World Cup. I’ve raced in Fort William several times and the course is really fun. After Fort William, I head to Italy for 10 days of hanging out, eating pizza, doing sweet rides, and hopefully getting my tan lines back. I finish the trip out in Val di Sole, Italy racing the World Championships. I’m looking forward to testing the fitness out ,since I’ve been getting some really solid training in during my time in Missoula. I think my call up for the first World Cup is around 120th, so I’m going to need to do some work on that, but I like passing people so hopefully I have the legs.
Sam was recently featured in the latest edition of VeloNews. Check it out on page 74. Cycling News online has a great article on Sam Also, Sam plugs The Cycling House in an interview with VeloNews TV. Watch the video here.
Uncertainty with Andy by Andy Schultz
Spring is a crazy time when it comes to weather. For example, three weeks ago while I was staying in Flagstaff, I woke up to a snow storm. It was unexpected considering that just days ago I was in Tucson at The Cycling House watching sweat drip off my head at the mere thought of exercise. It made a great excuse to spend the day in a café drinking coffee and eating delicious pastries rather than ride my bike. That was Tuesday. On Saturday I was inland of Santa Barbara competing in the hottest race of my life. Exactly one week later, I again woke to a snowstorm, this time in Durango. This time however, I had the motivation to head out on the bike shortly after the snow subsided. It was muddy, wet, and cold, but productive. My motivation stemmed from a conversation I had with Sam earlier in the week. He told me that when you brave the elements and get your workout/ride in that you are rewarded bonus points. The great thing is, later on you can redeem those bonus points for chest hair. This was a revelation to me. I immediately had new motivation and a new hero. You see, at one point in his life, my uncle not only accumulated enough bonus points for chest full of hair but also for an ample amount of back hair. I’m going to have to get a lot tougher but maybe someday I too will have enough bonus points for back hair. Boo yah!
I feel like the weather is a metaphor for how my season has progressed. One day I’ll have a great race, one of the best I have ever had, the next day can be described as a lackluster performance, at best. I wish I knew the reasons for the swings in performance but I don’t. But like wearing the right thermal jacket and tights can help you fight off the elements, I hope that having a well defined plan and a new sense of motivation can help me excel on a more consistent basis. We’ll see. Well, coming up with these amazing metaphors make me feel like Confucius, but I’m not so I’m going to quit while I’m ahead. Keep tearing legs off out there and keep striving for that back hair.
Andy just finished up with another amazing race in Santa Ynez, CA. With temperatures hitting nearly 100 degrees, a field of superstar riders coming off of European World Cup races, and valuable series points up for grabs, the 3rd NMBS race of the year was sure to be a ruthless one. As always, Andy delivered. He placed and impressive 8th in the cross country race. The weekend only got better from there, and he placed 7th in the short track on Sunday. Another amazing result for our head chef at TCH.
“Andy Schultz of The Cycling House”
Brendan picks a flower…a Wildflower by Brendan Halpin
Wildflower Triathlon festival was the first major race that I had on my schedule for 2008. Three teammates and I loaded up a Hammer Nutrition mini van with bikes, gear, and camping equipment and set off on the 20+ hour drive (no bikes flew off my roof on the way to the race so all was good)! The drive itself was not bad and we arrived in California excited to see the sun, because as you all know, “suns out: guns out!” The unique part about Wildflower triathlon festival is that nearly all of the 10,000 competitors and their families camp. Wildflower is often called the Woodstock of triathlon and the 1,000 plus Cal Poly volunteers provide the party atmosphere. Drunk/hung over college kids provide inspiration, enthusiasm, and entertainment throughout the weekend’s festivities.
I was racing the half Ironman for the first time at Wildflower under the banner of The Cycling House. I had a decent swim and came out of the water in 29 minutes. The bike went really well and I was flying past the pro women that started five minutes ahead of me. The Cycling House provided some HED H3 tri-spoke wheels with a rear Jet 6. I caught the lead women as I was coming into transition area. I began the run with Sam McGlone and Leanda Cave. I ran with them the first couple of miles and then I was no longer feeling, “strong to quite strong.” In fact, I was really struggling. My only inspiration on the course was the Montana cheer squad and crazy Cal Poly volunteers. I got through the run and finished in 4 hours 35 minutes. It was not my worst race, but definitely not my best. I finished first in my age group, was the 7th amateur and about 30th overall.
The race crippled my post race party plans because I could barely walk. The soreness was reminiscent of Ironman in Hawaii. The post race party consisted of awards, smores, beer, and campfire stories. All in all, it was a fun race and I was happy with my first race of the summer. Up next is the Boise 70.3!
“Brendan Halpin of The Cycling House”