Sunday, July 30, 2006

Perewitz Team Leaves for Sturgis

The 66th Annual Black Hills Motorcycle Rally, best known simply as "Sturgis" will kick off August 7 and run through August 13. This week attendees will start packing up and hitting the road on their way to the biggest rally of the year.

However, if you are Dave Perewitz and his team you are packing up and hitting the road a little early this year. Dave was chosen to build a custom motorcycle for Discovery Channel's Biker Build Off Series again this year. As part of the show he will meet up with the Discovery film crew and the competing builder in Iowa and then ride the rest of the way to Sturgis. Filming all the while. Each builder will have 5-10 people riding with him, followed by the caravan of trucks, trailers and film crew. What a sight it will be rolling down the highways.

So, while the Discovery bike has been kept under wraps for the last few weeks since it has been completed, it will be unveiled to some lucky folks along the way next week starting in Iowa.

But, what goes into getting the bike out there? I stopped by today and saw some of what goes on to load 23 motorcyles into trucks and trailers. It's more of a process than you'd think, especially when there is a new trailer involved. There is plating (for lack of the proper word) to install so the tie-downs have somewhere to attach to. And there are tie-downs all over the place there today. When you are transporting these motorcycles you don't want one little scratch on them so there is a lot of care and effort that goes into the loading and securing of the bikes.

Then there fitting all of the motorcycles they need to take into the trucks and trailers. One motorcycle might be slated for the back of a truck, but be too long and need to go to a trailer. Maybe it is too wide to fit next to the bike it was slated to go next to and need to be moved. Like any event, it is more time consuming than you'd think. And then there is all of the extra things that need to go - like t-shirts, hats etc and, oh yea, the people and their gear for 2 weeks on the road! Some expert packing is going on right now, that's for sure.

The new trailer is sweet! Dave had it wrapped with some cool graphics. So...I took a look around it hoping to see the Discovery bike....

Here's the front of the trailer. What great advertising, huh? Master Builder is Dave's series done for iTunes about how to build your own custom bike. I'm not sure if it is available on iTunes yet, but I hear that the series will be released on DVD in mid-August. I've seen the first couple of episodes and they are very good. I'll keep you posted as to when it hits stores.

But that doesn't show me the Discovery around to the back I went....

Wow! I really like the rear door of the trailer! Dave, larger than life with a very cool product. Ok, I'm a little biased, but it is a great door and, like the front, a great promotional spot! Think of how many people are going to see this going down the highway in the next couple of years.

Well, this still didn't give me a glimpse of the Discovery I asked Dave's son, Jesse, to open the door for me. And he did...

Where is the Discovery Bike?! Still under wraps until it's time to load it. I couldn't hang around for that so I'll have to settle for the tease on Dave's site. I have no doubt that it is a really cool bike with a fantastic paint job worthy of the win.

Voting will take place on Monday, August 7 and we'll know that night who wins when Dave's daughter, Jody, gives me a ring. I'll make sure to post the results here for those of you who can't make it out there (myself included...bummer!). If you are going get to the voting on the 7th!

The caravan of trucks and trailers will be leaving Perewitz' tomorrow morning, headed for Iowa. If you live between Massachusetts and there you never might just see them rolling down the highway. Would be fun to know if you do.

Just a little tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Masiguy's Opinion

After reading my post last night Tim said, "...I feel a post coming on." Boy did he ever! His take on the current Floyd Landis situation is well worth the read right down to the firehose.

Just a tiny tidbit this morning. Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

News on Floyd Landis

Well, today was surprising in one way and in another completely not so. I was surprised that there is something 'off' about Floyd Landis' A-sample test from last week. What I am not surprised about is the way the media is handling it - proclaiming him guilty of doping in headlines all over the globe before his B-sample is tested. I shouldn't be surprised. Controversy sells.

I don't know Floyd personally. I don't know what he may or may not have done. However, I do know that he deserves a fair shake so here's a link to Floyd's side of the story from Floyd himself and from his mother, who has now had to leave her home due to the media pressure.

Here's a link to a reporter that I admire very, very much, Bicycling's Joe Lindsey in his Boulder Report. It's very fair and extremely detailed, as always. It is well worth the few minutes to read it.

As I said, I don't know Floyd, but I am more than willing to wait and see what the B-sample, and possibly subsequent tests, say.

Just a tidbit for today. Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

OLN viewership & Last Tour Tidbits

So, where's Bob? Where's Al? Where are Phil and Paul? I keep flipping channels thinking I have the wrong one, but they don't seem to be there any more. Is anyone else having Tour Day France withdrawal?!

There certainly isn't any shortage of cycling news, though. It's like silly season in NASCAR when all the teams play musical chairs.

From Team Discovery: Levi Leipheimer is going to join the team next year and Viatchslav "Eki" Ekimov is going to retire and become part of the team management. Can't comment on the Levi deal, but I have to say that I wondered if Eki was retiring when the peloton let him go ahead for a few minutes in Paris on Sunday and he, uncharacteristically, waved to the crowd. He's been an absolute force through a great cycling career, which included 15 Tours de France. Wow.

Rumor has it that the guy who was fired from T-Mobile by fax (that's bad...), Jan Ullrich, may be in talks with Discovery, too. Although, he was in Bonn talking with his current/former team today. Stay tuned on that one...

It's also been rumored that Discovery would like to re-sign the 2006 Tour de France Champion, Floyd Landis. Although, I think I saw somewhere that iShares (Phonak) may have scooped him up for another year.

And a few Tour DAY France tidbits in wrap-up:

Thor Hushovd won bookend stages in Le Tour. That's just cool. Congrats to him.

Classiest moment of the race? Oscar Pereiro giving Floyd Landis a hug after the last time trial, knowing he was giving over the yellow jersey to the man who would win the race. You don't see that in sports too often.

And then there is "Our boy Floyd", as Reva dubbed him the first week of the Tour. I'm still in awe at what he accomplished and how he did it - all with a bum hip. A lot has been said about Floyd's family, where they live and how he grew up this last week but no matter what religion, these are some proud parents, as well they should be. It looks like their son might be rubbing off on them just a little bit, too.

Floyd did a lot for OLN's ratings, too. Viewership jumped 77% on the night Floyd won in the mountains. Um...Wow!

As for Floyd's looming hip surgery and the questions about whether or not he will be able to come back to racing. Here's what Floyd has to say about that:
"I'm looking at this as just another challenge," he said.
"Just like the bad day I had in the mountains.
I see this the same way. If it affects people's
judgment of whether I'll be as valuable later,
they'll have to wait and see. A lot of people
predicted a lot of bad things when I had
the bad day. I would take a lesson
from that if I were them."

After what he accomplished during the last mountain stage, does anyone want to doubt him? No? I didn't think so.

Again, Bravo Floyd. You made the Tour amazing. Thank you.

Lastly, welcome back to Tim and Cubbie. Tim was at his national sales meeting for the end of the Tour and we all missed his comments and insight. He reports that the meeting went well and he's now back. Congrats, Tim. I know you put a lot of work into your presentations. Glad you are back.

Miss Cubbie has returned from France and is sorting through all her photos, getting ready to post them on I'll let you know when they are up and ready for viewing, but in the mean time she shared her favorite today. Thanks for all the 'inside scoop' texts and photos! Good to have you back, too, Cubbie.

Just some cycling tidbits for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Cheers, Floyd!

(Photo credit FRANCK FIFE/AFP/Getty Images)

Bravo, Floyd. Bravo!

The Tour DAY France Arrives in Paris

Who ever would have thought that the Tour Day France would have been so exciting this year?! Everyone wondered if the race would still capture the US cycling fans' attention without Lance. Well, I think Floyd Landis has answered that query very well. I can't imagine that cycling fans everywhere haven't been fascinated with, at least, the last week of le Tour. What Floyd Landis did during this tour was nothing short of amazing. I have to think that the Floyd Landis shirts are flying off the shelves at this point.

It's been a little exta fun for me this year hearing a little bit of the inside scoop from Cubbie reporter and Bob Roll through her. It's her last day in France where she will watch le Tour finish and then, I'm sure, party with the Americans in Paris and then head home to her kids. But, before then, she has one last post from France.

Well, Cubbie's reign is coming to an end. It is the last day and Ihave had a very good time and learned quite a bit.
1. Many of the toilettes (that's French for toilets) have 2 flushoptions. The regular flush and the super flush for those big jobs.
2. Most Belgian beer is good.
3. There are a lot of Americans living in Paris, but not in France.Do the math on that one.
4. TV work is not as glamorous as you think.
5. It's difficult to travel with my husband. We have different travelroutines.
6. I am a little allergic to France. I've had this snatchy littlecough the whole time I was here.
7. George Hincapie is cuter in real life.
8. Floyd is human. A really cool human with super powers.
Thanks for tuning in . . .you guys are the greatest fans ever. Staytuned to for super updates. . .. .xoxoxoxxoCubbie

I'm just watching Floyd lead the peloton on his yellow bike as the race officially starts. It's a great, great day, isn't it?! Will it be his last Tour Day France? We'll have to see. Somehow, I think if anyone can do it, Floyd may be the one to do it. But, today, it's all about getting to the finish line without incident and then celebrating! He has certainly earned one of the biggest celebrations ever!

Just a Parisian tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Cubbie "meets" Our Boy Floyd Landis

Very early this morning I got a phone call that said I had to get to my email and post Cubbie's latest report from France. Since I always listen to Reva, I've posted it below since we know Tim has national sales meetings this week and hasn't been able to post as often as he'd like. This note from Cubbie was just too good not to get up.

FLOYD TALKED TO ME! I'm sitting here answering my 4000 emails on Liggett's computer and I saw a Phonak car with Coachy Coach in it and and and and and and FLOYD IS RIGHT BEHIND HIM ON THE F'ING BIKE and I yell, CONGRATS FLOYD! and he stops and says how cute I look today and how he's heard so much about me and he's glad that I could make it to the Tour this year. . . .ok. Kidding.

He waved and yelled THANKS! We tried to get a picture, but I didn't. My friend Bobby Armstrong (no relation) got one >and PROMISES to send them to me. He's on some world tour and won't be home until August. I'll definately put that out when it comes it. Sweet ass. Wish it were mine.

Life here is good. Lots of traveling. I'm excited for the time trial today. It's going to be a tight squeeze with the time of our train leaving at 6:46 and the Floyd finishing. Donna - call me when we know what Floyd did, will you? Yesterday was hot and we stayed with Righteous Rod in the hottest room in France. It was REALLY uncomfortable, but temporary.

Today it looks as if we are going to see some rain. Not ideal. It won't hurt Floyd, though. He just finished riding the course and loved it so GAME ON.

Hope Tim is ok. I've noticed he hasn't posted. He's having a tough week. Does his company NOT realize this is history in the making? Cubbie's signing off! cr

Thanks for all the great info, Cubbie. I think I can safely say that both Reva and I wish we were with you so we could give Floyd a triple dose of 'congrats' and 'good luck'. However, I think he'll be just fine on his own today.

Allez, Allez Floyd!!!!

Just a little Floyd tidbit from France today. Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Harley Rides

As I mentioned, when you attend a Perewitz Bike Night you never know who is going to show up. Last night, Harley road in. No, not a Harley Davidson - there were many of them. No, Harley, as in the English Bulldog. She road in with her owner lounging on the tank.

Apparently, she's been riding since she was 8 weeks old and 15 pounds; starting in parking lots. She's now 7 1/2 and rides all over the place. She was mellow and great fun to have around and watch ride in with her helmet and goggles. We all hope she comes back for the August Bike Night.

Just a doggie tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Bobke Quote of the Day

Watching today's incredible Tour DAY France stage on OLN. Epic. Simply Epic. Floyd Landis is the MAN. But, I think we all know that by now and won't forget it any time soon, right?

With all the great quotes today, a quote from Bobke jumped out at me that isn't necessarily cycling related - it's life related. It stuck out and made me smile while nodding my head.

"A women's intuition is nearly flawless."

Very true, my friend. Very true.

Update: Did y'all catch on tonight's coverage that OLN left the live feed on when Al announced a commercial? There were some funny, funny bits going on there with Al & Bob.

Just a little tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

True Grit

Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images
Congratulations Floyd Landis!!!!

Floyd looking for a turn around

Cubbie just called in from France. She is sitting next to Robbie Ventura and they are watching the live feed of today's stage. Floyd and a small group have gone out on their own and, currently, have a minute and twenty seconds on the peloton.

We all know that isn't a lot. However, I think it shows that Floyd recovered somewhat last night and is determined to do whatever he can to recover the time lost yesterday. Makes me think of Bob's quote from the other day:

"Sacrifices have to be made to win the Tour. If it means making your men ride on the front until they pass out, well, that is one of the things you have to do. If you aren't unwilling to do that, you don't deserve the yellow jersey."

I don't know if the rest of the team has that mentality because none of them are with him in this little pack, but Floyd certainly does. He's not taking yesterday's setback laying down. He's fighting back. Only time will tell if this will work for a podium finish in France, but I, for one, will be cheering him on this morning!

Allez Floyd!

Just a Tour tidbit. Thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Ride To Work Day

Today is the 15th Annual Ride to Work Day where all motorcyclists are encouraged to ride to work. This year probably takes on an added significence with the high gas prices.

I don't know if they planned it this way or not, but custom motorcycle fabricator Dave Perewitz is having a Bike Night tonight at his place in Bridgewater, Massachusetts. What a perfect way to celebrate Ride to Work Day.

When you visit Dave's you never know who you might run into. Last month's Bike Night saw NASCAR driver Jeremy Mayfield hanging out for a little bit while the Discovery Channel was filming for their Biker Build Off series. The bike is done and will be on its way to Sturgis with Dave soon.

Watch for motorcycles. They are everywhere, especially today.

Just a little two-wheel tidbit. Thanks for stopping by.

Cubbie, Bobke, George & the Alps

Cub reporter is back to normal daily posts of le Tour DAY France over on Tim's site. Good to see! In between her posts to Tim she's been texting me all kinds of fun things like this morning's text

"I was just 5ft from GH. Blog that, baby" (GH -George Hincapie)

While she was stalking George, Bob was making good use of his off time in the booth while they weren't filming.

Yes, I asked first before blogging this photo

Just got a call from Cubbie as she was careening down a mountain with Bob at the wheel. There was honking involved. I didn't ask.... She sounds tired but like she is having a blast. Except the fact that she is sad over Floyd's day today. I haven't seen the coverage and don't really think I want to see the bonk happen. It's a part of racing, I know, but it's sad. I'll be watching tonight.

Just a little Tour tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

10 seconds....

Someone looks like the cat that swallowed the canary......

Photo credit: AFP/Franck Fife


Photo credit: AP Photo/Bas Czerwinski

Congratulations to Floyd Landis on taking back the yellow jersey after today's stage at Alpe d'Huez!!!!

Looking forward to watching the coverage tonight.

Just a mid-day tidbit. Thanks for stopping by.

Bob Roll Climbs Alpe d'Huez!

Rest Day is behind us and today is a big, big day in the Tour DAY France. Alpe d'Huez. Wow. This is a stage I enjoy so much. The paint on the roads. The rabid fans. The sheer determination of the riders. It is amazing to watch it all. I can't wait for this evening's coverage!

If you missed it, Cubbie checked in very early this morning and left a comment. Apparently, she was able to get some time on Phil Ligget's computer and give us a few nuggets from their studio on top of Alpe d'Huez. Yup, I'm still slightly jealous.....

I found this to be quite a tidbit and didn't want you all to miss it:

Bob did it yesterday in
one hour forty five minutes.
Apparently he hasn't ridden it
since he was actually IN the tour.

Yes, "it" would be Alpe d'Huez. So, although the photo Cubbie sent seemed like the day was full of lounging, that wasn't the case. Bob actually road up the famous mountain. Way to go Bobke! Tim, I'd say they earned those empty least Bob did.

And, I must say, Allez Floyd!

Just a little Alpe tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Bobke & Al's Rest Day

Cubbie is doing her "job" even without Internet access. Here's a camera phone photo she sent this afternoon. It's a little grainy, but you can see that Bob and Al are having a relaxing evening on the Tour DAY France rest day.

Just a tiny tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Tour DAY France Rest Day?

Yes, the riders have a much deserved rest day before they come back to attack the Alps. However, it isn't a rest day for our Cubbie who hit the ground running yesterday in search of all the latest news and behind the scenes scoop. She just texted me this message:

On my way up to Alp d'huez - tears in my eyes. I'll have Internet tomorrow

Wow. I'm sure she'll have quite the blog post for us over at Masiguy when she gets to the internet tomorrow.

Just a tiny tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

BK/Cub Reporter is in France and Reporting!

Photo credit: PASCAL GUYOT/AFP/Getty Images

What Cubbie and Hubby might be seeing this week.

Yesterday afternoon I got a call from everyone's favorite Tour reporter, Cub Reporter (also known here as BK). She was just checking in one last time, from the airport, before her plane left for France.

She and her trusty traveling companion, her husband Bill, was with her and they were ready for all of their travel. Literally Planes, Trains and Automobiles. Plane to France, train to destination town and cab to hotel.

I'm happy to report that Cubbie and hubby (just came up with that and it is too cute...) are in France watching the Tour DAY France on French television. Although she gathered up a few reports before she left and sent them to Tim, she's fast and furiously writing another one right now as they watch le Tour. The indication I get from the text is that it will be classic Cubbie. You'll want to watch for it over on Tim's blog.

Cubbie will meet up with Bob Roll this evening and I'm sure hijinx will commence. She has told him about all of the questions and, apparently, dares that were forwarded to her courtesy of this blog and their own site. I think Bob is a little in awe and maybe, just maybe, a little fearful since we know that Cubbie is fearless and we may just see her on the mountains painting or on top of one of those straw structures along the side of the road. Mostly, she wants to get something related on television. She will be lobbying for a shirt or a hat or something on Bob during coverage. Do any of us doubt that she will make that happen? Keep watching.

Just got another text from Cubbie as I type. "We're in the hotel sitting room watching let tour in French. Charming. I'm gonna go get a shower SOON. France is sticky". Ok...she's got travel fatigue and needs a shower after traveling for hours and hours. But, it's 'charming'. I'm slightly jealous. Ok, maybe more than 'slightly'.
I asked if the French coverage has a Phil - you know the excitable kind of announcer. She says "Yeah. He gets all excited. It's great. They have an Al, too. Sounds just like Al's voice in French."

As for le Tour itself. I was disappointed to see Floyd out of the yellow after yesterday. Tim thinks that Phonak was smart.

"However, given the circumstances,
I think Floyd was imminently smarter
than most people assume; the pressure
to defend is now shifted to another team,
leaving Phonak with a few days to simply rest
until arriving at the really hard stages in the Alps."

Bob thinks that Floyd is strong but that his team doesn't have what it takes to get him in yellow again for Paris.

"Sacrifices have to be made to win the Tour.
If it means making your men
ride on the front until they pass out, well,
that is one of the things you have to do.
If you aren't unwilling to do that,
you don't deserve the yellow jersey."

I disagree with both of them. Eek! Did I say that out loud?

I don't think Phonak was smart letting those guys get such a lead on them so that they lost the yellow jersey. Who am I, right? But couldn't they have worked a little harder to keep the 8 second lead? I'm not talking chase them down like dogs and put in all that effort since they have a long way to go before Paris, but I don't think I'd want to give up the yellow jersey, even with the pressures that come with it. Who knows if you can ever get it back? Stuff happens. We've all seen it happen. Flats. Bonking. Crashes. All take time away from you. Giving someone over a minute. I just wouldn't want that to happen. But, that's just me and I'm not sweating my butt off over there either. Nor do I have mountains to climb in a couple of days.

I think that both Floyd and his team are strong and, if they put their collective efforts together they will be just fine and all riding yellow bikes in Paris. Floyd is, obviously, the toughest one on that team. But, I think his guys will rise to tho ccasionon. Hopefully, there won't be any bad 'stuff' to happen and they will rock in the Alps. After all, we all know Floyd kicks in the mountains - but he will need his team to lead him up for part of it so he can really shine.

I'm still confident in Team Phonak with Floyd at the helm. No worries.

Just Tour DAY France tidbits for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Brand New Shiny Yellow Bike

Photo credit: Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

Look who got a much deserved new yellow bike! Our boy Floyd looks good in yellow, don't cha think?

Photo credit: AP Photo/Alessandro Trovati

Just a colorful tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

A Man and His Lion


Photo credit: AFP

Destroyed hip, no pain meds and he's in the yellow jersey? Robin Williams had no idea how right he was when he dubbed Floyd Landis the MoFo of the Mountains. Wow. I can't wait to watch the coverage tonight.

Enjoy that lion, Mr. Landis. You have earned it.

A great American tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

NASCAR Tidbits

Just a few NASCAR pieces that I picked up along the way today.

Not only is Juan Pablo Montoya moving to NASCAR in 2007, but he and his F1 team have parted ways effective immediately. Might he start practicing in a Busch Series car soon? I would bet so.

The USAToday had a great article about NASCAR drivers in ads. They are entertaining and crossing over to be placed during other shows rather than just during NASCAR races. They are also finding that people aren't clicking off the commercials so much when it's humorous and includes a NASCAR driver. When you click to the article you can view commercials by Jeremy Mayfield, Tony Stewart, Dale Jarrett and Daryl Waltrip. They are only a few of the drivers that have commercials - just off the top of my head I can think of Dale Earnhardt, Jr. (and his dad, still!), Jeff Gordon, Kasey Kahne, Mikey Waltrip, Denny Hamlin and I could go on, but I think you get the point. Companies are spending tons of money to attach themselves to NASCAR and their drivers.

Just a little tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Cub Reporter off to Tour Day France

Well, the Cub Reporter, known to all of you as BK and to me as Cubbie, is headed off to the Tour Day France on Friday. She'll meet up with her business partner, and our favorite commentator, Bob Roll, so you know she'll have some serious access to all of the behind the scenes things at Le Tour.

Cubbie promises to be in contact with both Tim and myself while she is away via email and text. Since she is the 'Cub Reporter', let's give her some assignments. What do you want to know about Le Tour that you think Bob, Al, Paul and Phil won't tell you on air? Remember, this is a family show....but things you might not see. I have a couple of examples:

- On the mountains stages the roads are painted all over the place. I love this aspect of le Tour! How do you stake out your piece of the tarmac? Do any disagreements ever happen? I mean, are minding your own business painting "Allez Floyd" in green on the road and someone is writing "George Kicks Butt" around you and miscalculates the space needed and needs part of your space. Hey, I wouldn't give up my Floyd what happens? How does it all fit? These are the things OLN isn't going to report on. Might seem mundane, but, hey, I want to know.

- We know that Bob and Al and then Phil and Paul are in separate spaces during le Tour so they can have different coverage, but are they next to each other? Where are they? Can they see each other? Make faces at each other off camera? Inquiring minds want to know.

I'm sure I will come up with a few more, but what do you want to know? Write your questions (within reason, remember, family show....) here and we'll see if Cubbie can answer a few while she's over there. Get them in the comment section by Thursday night so she can see them before she leaves on a jet plane.

Hmmm...didn't ask her about this before I wrote it, but if anyone can get answers, it's Cubbie!

Mountains today. Allez Floyd!!

Just a little tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Our Boy Floyd

Racing resumes today after a well-deserved rest day at the Tour Day France. I'm very much looking forward to the coverage this evening. I admit that I missed yesterday's recap show, but if you are going to miss one of the shows that's the one to miss, right? Tonight it will be all about Bobke and Al.

Today I will watch with renewed interest in 'Our Boy Floyd' as Reva has started to call him. Not only did I pick him because I like his perspective on life (from what I've read), cycling style and I think he's really stepped it up in the last couple of years but did you all catch the news yesterday about him needing a new hip? He'll have surgery right after le Tour to replace his hip, which has been giving him issues for two years.

"If I hadn't had a bicycle-racing career, I would have had the hip replaced two years ago because I don't really want to deal with the pain," Landis said. "It's bad, it's grinding, it's bone rubbing on bone. Sometimes it's a sharp pain. When I pedal and walk, it comes and goes, but mostly it's an ache, like an arthritis pain. It aches down my leg into my knee. The morning is the best time, it doesn't hurt too much. But when I walk it hurts, when I ride it hurts. Most of the time it doesn't keep me awake, but there are nights that it does."

I'm sorry, two years and he's climbing hills like a billy goat still? Woa. Floyd, I don't know if you are just tough as nails or if you are crazy - maybe a little bit of both - but you have my positive energy and thoughts. Allez Floyd! Go get 'em!

Just a small tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Iceman, Ironhead and now...Destroyer

Here's something fun for a change. If you are a race car driver in your heart, or if the local police consider you to be excessively speedy and don't take "I'm qualifying" as an answer to your speeding, Sony Pictures has some fun for you. With the movie Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby hitting movie theatres on August 4, Sony has decided that everyone who is a race car driver, even if only in their own mind, needs a nickname. Go on over and get your racing nickname and then come back here and let me know what it is.

Me? I'm The Destroyer. HA! I like it.

Thanks to "Jessi the Jackhammer" for all the fun!

Just a fun tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Tell Dave Perewitz Your Favorite Motorcycle Color

Master custom motorcycle fabricator Dave Perewitz is filming an episode of Discovery Channel's Biker Build Off. This is the second week that the film crew has been at Dave's shop and they are getting ready to paint the bike. They are letting you help decide what color to paint it, too!

Go to their site and vote in the drop down box. You don't need to enter your name, where you live or any other personal information, which is very refreshing. Just click on the color you like. I'd like to lobby for one color, but I'm sure they have had enough of my votes for one day. Go on over and vote. I'll let y'all know which color won soon.

Just a colorful tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Happy Birthday Tai Shan

(AP Photo/Leslie E. Kossoff)
"Tai Shan, right, and his mother Mei Xiang, take a close look at a frozen treat that was made for him on his first birthday, Sunday, July 9, 2006, in the outdoor panda exhibit at the National Zoo in Washington. The frozen melange was filled with apples, yams, carrots and fruit juices. "

What a great birthday treat for a panda. Here's wishing the little one a happy, healthy, long life.

Just a fun tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Juan Pablo Montoya to bring fans and sponsors to NASCAR

Anyone who saw the coverage of the Formula 1/NASCAR demonstration by Juan Pablo Montoya and Jeff Gordon at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 2003 would be surprised by today's news that Montoya is giving up his Formula 1 career to move to the United State's NASCAR. Viewing that coverage you got the distinct impression that Gordon was having way more fun than Montoya. Apparently not.

Photo: Jeff Gordon and Juan Pablo Montoya, Indy 2003 -- photo credit/Autostock

But just why is it such huge news that Formula 1 driver Juan Pablo Montoya is joining NASCAR in 2007? Well, there are many reasons, but here are a couple off the top of my head.

Montoya’s Established Fan base
Until not very long ago, all NASCAR drivers came from the South (of the United States, that is). Alan Kulwicki was the first person that I truly noticed in NASCAR that wasn’t from the south – he was from Wisconsin (gasp!). I know there were a few others, including New Englander Ron Bouchard, but Kulwicki went on to be NASCAR champion (1992) so he garnered a little more attention.

Now there are drivers from Indiana, California and even Washington – not to mention Kulwicki’s home state of Wisconsin. There are even crew members from Connecticut – Frank Stoddard comes first to my mind.

However, another country? No way. Juan Pablo Montoya is from Columbia - the country, not the city in South Carolina. NASCAR doesn’t necessarily need more fans, since it is the largest spectator sport in the country, but they do need a more diverse fan base to have continued success. Juan Pablo may very well help to bring that diverse crowd that has been eluding NASCAR. Not that the NASCAR organization hasn’t tried to market to the fastest growing population in the United States, but I’m not sure how quickly it’s catching on. NASCAR’s diversity initiative just got a huge boost with the addition of Montoya to its ranks.

The European motorsports fans have long looked down on NASCAR as ‘roundy-round’ racing and haven’t paid too much attention to the sport. Try catching even the minimum NASCAR coverage in some places in Europe – results – it can’t be done. This is a constant source of frustration for me at the end of each summer when I’m in Germany for a trade show.

However, Montoya has an established fan base in Europe already, not to mention that anyone who has followed Formula 1, regardless of their favorite driver, will be very interested to see how he does in his new venture. The European race fans will be watching February’s Daytona 500. It’s up to NASCAR to keep their interest, but they are getting the chance to be seen by an untapped audience – all courtesy of Chip Ganassi Racing signing Juan Pablo.

Additional Sponsors With more diverse fans come additional sponsors. I’m sure there are companies out there that haven’t been interested in NASCAR in the past, but will be very interested now. NASCAR has the potential to be reaching a much different audience in 2007. Smart companies understand that they need to market to many diverse populations now, within the same country, to continue their success. Some of the marketing folks at these smart companies may just have become NASCAR fans. Believe it or not, there is quite a Formula 1 audience in the US and any racing fan knows of Montoya. Not only does he bring in a diverse audience, he’s talented and respected – two things that make him even more attractive to potential sponsors.

My guess is that Chip Ganassi will not have any trouble finding sponsors for either Montoya’s Busch car or his Nextel Cup car. He already mentioned that Texaco will stay with the car, but they are being a little quiet about that to respect the current relationship Montoya has with Mobil on his F1 car. Add ‘integrity’ to ‘talented and respected’. He’s a marketers’ dream!

Yes, I welcome the addition of Juan Pablo to the talented drivers already on the circuit, but NASCAR should be bending over backwards to make him feel welcome and appreciated before he even takes one turn on the track.

Just a little tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Montoya to NASCAR in 2007

BREAKING NEWS --- BREAKING NEWS Chip Ganassi is in the process of announcing that his 'new' driver for the 2007 NASCAR season is going to be Juan Pablo Montoya of Formula 1 fame. Wow! That's huge. This is not a new driver - Montoya is a seasoned, great driver.

A year or so ago, Montoya and Jeff Gordon did a press event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway where Jeff drove Montoya's F1 car and Montoya drive the Dupont Chevy so he's had a little time behind the wheel of a much different car than his F1 car. He admits it is going to take time for him to get the hang of this. But, don't bet that it will take him long. He's a great racing talent. A true racer can adapt to any car with little time.

Wow. This is huge, huge news. 2007 is going to be a heck of a year in NASCAR, not like this year isn''s always great! Welcome to NASCAR Juan Pablo! See you on the starting line in Daytona in February!

Just a speedy tidit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, July 07, 2006

A Tour Birthday

Hey folks - according to the Cub Reporter, known to folks here as BK, it's Bobke's birthday today. Go on over to his website and leave a little message in his guest book. BK will make sure he gets them all.

Now, I seem to remember that if your birthday falls during the Tour day France that you are presented with your weight in champagne as Victor Hugo Pena was in 2003. That's a cool tradition. I wonder if they'll do that for Bob this year - they should, right? Then again Pena was in the yellow jersey - maybe that is the catch since there is probably more than one birthday during Le Tour and they'd go broke with all the champagne they'd have to buy.

However, I'm sure Bob could find a yellow shirt to wear under his blazer today. That should count, right? Go get that champagne, Bob! Wishing you a wonderful birthday, my friend.

Just a little tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Tour Time Trial

I must admit that, not being a cycling 'geek', I've had a hard time following Le Tour this week. For one thing, the flat stages haven't ever been my favorites; I'm a mountain person myself. I love the whole energy of the mountains with the painted roads, fanatical fans and sheer tactics from the riders. It's magical. Flats? Not so much.

For another, I know the top names (Basso, Ullrich, Vino etc.) in cycling but not the 'second tier', if you will, or the up-and-comers, of talent. After a week ago, many of those names have not been on the roads. I've had to learn new names and follow more closely. It's been less than fun.

With the time trial coming up, I thought I'd miss it. After all, the time trials in the last few years have been dramatic and exciting wondering who would take it...Lance? Jan? Tyler? Would they make up precious seconds or even a minute if something happened to their rival? Who would have the power that particular day? Exciting. This year...well, no Tyler for a year now and no Lance we knew, but no Basso. Who will be the front runners? Will there be a close rivalry?

How would the time trial hold my interest? Well, tonight was my answer. Bob Roll. He is on fire tonight. Did y'all hear his explanation about why, when you are in the peloton, you don't pay attention to what is going on with the spectators? It was priceless! And it hasn't stopped there - how to keep your attention during a long day in the saddle? Hire him for 8 hours of laughs in the peloton. HA! He and Al Trautwig are really good with their banter, too. I'll be watching every night because Bob entertains and educates those of us that aren't cycling 'geeks' (and I say that with all affection).

Oh, and does anyone think that Robbie Ventura has spent a lot of time with Bob Roll? He's got the hands going during his segments like a pro!

Hey Tim Jackson, MasiGuy - you are great at your recaps of each stage...if you have time, maybe you can do a preview of the time trial for those of us who need to understand who the new 'big boys' are this year for the time trial. And, what is your thought as to why they got rid of the team time trial? Lance had his opinion tonight, but what is yours?

Just my own cycling tidbits. Thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Clean Riders Sent Home from Tour Day France??

From's article about the doctor named in the Operacion Puerto scandal that has rocked pro-cycling:

“I’m angry about the whole matter. Names have appeared of people that I don’t even know and there are others that haven’t come out and I’ve no idea why, but my professional oath forbids me from revealing their names,” (Eufemiano)Fuentes declared. “Treatment only for cyclists? I’m also indignant about that. I’ve worked with other sports, like athletics, tennis and football. There are a lot of names that haven’t come out, there have been only selective leaks. I don’t know why… There are still riders in the Tour de France who I have treated.”

I'm sorry...what?! There are people on the list that were possibly sent home from the Tour Day France that he doesn't know? And others that he does but that are still riding?

I'm thinking that the folks who follow cycling are pretty jaded right now and many think that 'everyone' is doping. Or, at least, everyone that this doctor treated doped or jacked up their blood or whatever it is he allegedly helped them with. However, imagine for one minute.....what if he is telling the truth and there are innocent people on that list? What if that innocent person was sent home from the Tour? Ugh, that is just awful.

I don't have the answers. I don't know who did or didn't cheat. I won't even profess to have an opinion on that one. However, the way this issue is being handled has ramifications for the athletes, their sponsors, event organizers, hotels, transportation companies, fans...and the list goes on and on. If they sent innocent guys home because of something that wasn't I feel badly for everyone - including the team of law enforcement investigators that needs to weed through all of this information, sort it out and get to the bottom of the issues at hand.

Clearly, this is a flawed system that is showing its cracks at every turn.

Just a discouraging tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Happy 4th of July Aerosmith-Style

Photo Credit -- Gary Higgins/The Patriot Ledger

Boston is getting ready to rock the 4th of July like no other year. The Boston Pops, conducted by Keith Lockhart, will be joined by Steven Tyler and Joe Perry of Aerosmith (above at rehearsal last night).

Wishing you all a wonderful 4th of July evening!

Update: As you'd expect, the "Bad Boys of Boston" rocked the city last night. The Boston Globe's Richard Dyer says of Steven Tyler and Joe Perry, "But the crowd of 500,000 and the national television audience got three songs and just over eight minutes from them. The two men put out more energy than some performers deliver in an entire show...."

Steven Tyler and Joe Perry, July 4, 2006/Photo Credit: William Moore/Boston Globe

Tour Day France Rolls On

You can follow live coverage of Tour Day France stages here or get great recaps here so I won't even attempt either. However, here are just a few things I've noticed at Le Tour in the last couple of days:

- Wondering why Bob Roll is wearing not one,but two, LiveStrong bands? You can find that answer from his business partner here.

- Not one, not two, but three broken collarbones today? Ouch! That was tough to see.

- Whenever they mention the "Big Boys" in the commentary, I find myself looking for Jan Ullrich and Ivan Basso in the peloton. Anyone else still doing that? Guess it is going to take me a couple more days to get used to Le Tour without them.

- Ever wondered why, exactly, Bob Roll calls it the 'Tour Day France'? It's a great reason that you can find in the Blogke. He cracks me up.

- How about Thor Hushovd!? He's gets the award for toughest rider so far. The blood loss alone made him weak after a hot day in the saddle. To get up and do it again the next day... Bravo to him.

- The heat today amazed me. 99 degrees in the air with tarmac temps of 122 degrees. Ugh. I don't know how the riders and spectators do it. These riders are incredible athletes for sure. I wouldn't make it 2 miles in that.

Looking forward to see the drama unfold tomorrow. Let's hope all of the riders make it to the finish without mishap.

Just a few small tidbits for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Tony Stewart Creates Brand-Loyal Fans in Daytona

A few weeks back Michael Wagner had an interesting post about a brand-loyal, rabid fans - the one-percenters. This is part of that post:

"What makes them love your brand? What makes them “talk up” your brand? What makes them tattoo your brand on their arm, proudly wear your logo on the gear you sell them, or put your slogans on their car bumper? Their enthusiasm powers conversations and widespread interaction with both your current customers and others not yet convinced. They are alive to your brand and often contagious."

Last night NASCAR driver Tony Stewart took those questions to heart and created a whole bunch of new one-percenters after his win at the Pepsi 400 at Daytona. About a year ago any time Tony won a race he brought his car not to victory lane but to the start/finish line, got out and climbed the fence to be right there with the fans. After a couple of climbs he started to get into the flag man's perch and take the flag. Fans loved it.

Last night he took it to a whole new level. Not only did he climb the fence a mere few weeks after breaking a bone in his shoulder, he got the checkered flag and then climbed down into the crowd! In an interview afterwards, when he got to victory lane, he said that people really enjoyed that no matter what shirt or hat they had on (representing their favorite drivers that may not have been Tony). He was high-fiving people, jumping around and, in general, just celebrating with hundreds of excited fans. He didn't seem to be in a rush to leave either, only going when his crew came to the other side of the fence and created a path for him to get back to the car to take it to victory lane.

"What makes them (1%ers) love your brand"? I think Tony Stewart has that answer - at least he's got part of it. Those folks will be talking about their 'time with Tony' and showing their camera phone photos to people for weeks. Not only that, I'll bet that more than a few of them bought some Tony Stewart/Home Depot Team merchandise on their way out of the track last night.

Congratulations to the whole Home Depot team on their win last night, and on creating some new 'rabid' fans.

Just a non-cycling tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Bob Roll Commercials & New Pick

Well, with all the craziness that went on at the Tour Day France yesterday, I needed something a little light. Bob Roll's partner, Jessi (known to readers of this blog as BK), came through by pointing me to the three new Trek commercials staring our favorite commentator, Bob "Tour DAY France" Roll. You can view them here. They are for Trek's game "Trek Mania" which you can enter at Trek's site. They are vintage Bob Roll. I think you'll like them. If I had to pick one as a favorite, I'd say the 'disguises' one, but they all crack me up. Thanks for the comic relief that was much needed yesterday, Jessi.

So, since my pick for Le Tour was Ivan Basso and he woke up at home today, I'll pick again. It's not a hard choice since I really would like to see him win - Floyd Landis. Seems like a good guy, has a sense of humor and always keeps things in perspective. Allez Floyd!

Just a little tidbit for today. Thanks for stopping by.