Category: "Local"

Swim, Bike, Run For a Cause

by Jack  


Recently, one of my very close friends embarked on a crusade to help a very worthy cause. About 138,530 people in the United States will find out they have leukemia, lymphoma or myeloma this year and a child or adult is expected to lose their fight against these diseases every ten minutes. Lamar Hughes has chosen to be proactive in his endeavor to help the The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society fight for a cure for these diseases while bettering himself in a search for a healthier lifestyle.

Lamar has joined more than 380,000 former volunteers of Team in Training to help raise awareness and money for research in exchange for training and resources for competing in an endurance event. On May 25, 2009, Lamar will compete in his very first triathlon. But this is not just any triathlon, it is an Olympic distance event that includes a 0.9 mile swim, a 24 mile bike ride and a 6 mile run. To make matters even more daunting, Lamar is 6'3" and 245 lbs of limited aerobic ability. Of course, he's going to kill me for saying that but this fact makes his effort all the more challenging and would be a personal triumph once completed.

Lamar's fundraising goal is to reach $4500 in donations. The concept is pretty simple. His friends and family agree to donate towards a positive cause while he endures months of hard work that culminates into a few hours of pain and suffering. But when the pain ends and the suffering subsides, he will have accomplished two goals. He would be comforted to know that he took a hands-on approach in helping to find a cure for these blood cancers while obtaining a healthier lifestyle for himself and his family.

I have to say that as a friend I am very proud of Lamar. If anyone can set a goal and accomplish it, it would be him. To be able to have the discipline needed to help not only yourself, but hundreds of thousands of strangers who are counting on you is a lot of pressure. But with the help of you and I, Lamar has nothing to worry about.

Would you help Lamar and I raise cancer awareness and donate to a good cause? Please follow this link to learn more about Lamar Hughes and his goals, updates on his training as well as to contribute your tax-deductible donation to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society today.

Thanks for reading.

To help, please follow the link below:

Lamar Hughes Team in Training Page

Cycling in Manhattan

by Jack  

Again, I apologize for the lack of posts as work has been super busy. But in the meantime, enjoy this clip I found today. It will give you an idea of how exciting it is to ride your bike in the biggest city in America. There's a brief intro and then the fun begins. Enjoy!

Who is Bikesnob NYC?

by Jack  

Just who is this Bikesnob NYC person? Does anyone know? He (or she) is supposed to be anonymous but I'm sure most people have wondered who exactly this person is. What does he/she look like? What is his/her day job? Does he/she have a job? Why exactly is this person so entertaining to so many fans on the internet?

I have to admit, I enjoy the occasional Bikesnob NYC (BSNYC from now on) post and have even made comments to a few of the posts (though I'm pretty sure no one reads them). Because I'm pretty new to the cycling blog world and have only recently made the rounds to all of the blogs including BSNYC, I still do not fully understanding what BSNYC, the website, is all about. I'm perplexed by the ubiquitous first few comments which include such single words like "Podium", "2" or some other, what seems like, random words. Of course, I understand they are all trying to be the first "commenter" of the post, but why? And why be anonymous? It's just turbid. But regardless, I do enjoy the posts and it is one of the sites I visit on a regular basis.

Now, with that said, I thought it would be cool to poke fun at the supposed anonymity of BSNYC. Apparently, we were both at the Harlem Crits a few weeks ago and after looking at some of BSNYC's photo's I realized he was within my line of site as I was taking photos. So could I have possibly caught BSNYC on camera? I, of course, don't know the answer but maybe someone else might be able to offer some insight. Follow me to my exhibits...

Full story »

A Quick Roundup

by Jack  

A couple of quick mentions of some very important news happenings from today. Let's start locally first.

Car-Free Saturday's!!!
Mayor Bloomberg, together with a bunch of other figures including Lance Armstrong (currently last on the poll to the right), announced the creation of "Summer Streets", a car-free city route for health and recreation. Three Saturday's this August, the city will shut down one of the major north/south thoroughfares from the base of the Brooklyn Bridge to East 72nd Street. The route will be closed from 7am to 1pm so wake up early! This program is roughly modeled after similar ones in Bogotá, Colombia and Paris, France. Please read the Streetsblog article here as well as the official press release here. Can you say alternative to congestion pricing? I'd like to thank Elizabeth for reminding me to write about this today. Thanks!

Team Columbia!!!
Back to the world of the pro peloton, Team High Road announced that they had secured a main sponsor for the next 3 years and it's an American company! Columbia Sportswear have taken the gigantic leap into the sport, the same leap that USPS and Discovery did a few years ago as well as the same leap 7-11 and Motorola did even more years ago. For Bob Stapleton to be able to sign a big name American company is such a huge deal in light of the recent bad news in the sport related to doping. This certainly shows that faith has returned and we can begin to see much brighter pastures to come. The team will start sporting their new kits at the start of the Tour de France on July 5th! See the Velonews article here.

Harlem Rocks!

by Jack  


My wife and I enjoyed a nice afternoon in Harlem this past Sunday watching the 35th Annual Skyscraper Harlem Cycling Classic. As you no doubt may have seen or heard, Rock Racing was in town! Their fearless leader Michael Ball brought in flare and some of his best cyclists. (You might be interested in this interview of him by Velocity Nation.) Fast Freddie Rodriquez, Tyler Hamilton and Rashaan Bahati all made the trip this year. Ball also recruited a couple of Toyota-United riders including the Cuban Missile, Ivan Dominguez to make up a world class field.

Too bad Rock didn't win. Leave it up to a youngster, Eric Barlevav of Time Pro Cycling, to steel the thunder. Not only did he out throw Bahati at the line, he proceeded to cross the finish line on the ground. It seemed like he preferred to win with a belly flop rather than the traditional salute. Job well done though. Take a look below at his soon to be patented salute. I don't recommend this to anyone.

Click on pict for entire album.

See the final results here.

"Road to Roubaix" Review

by Jack  


My wife and I attended the world premier screening of Road to Roubaix this past Sunday here in New York City as part of the first leg of the ’08 Bicycle Film Festival. As soon as we arrived, we immediately said to ourselves, “only in NY”. It seemed more of a get together for the city’s bike messengers and the alternative crowd rather than a bunch of cyclists with farmer’s tans owning $5000 bikes. Not to be stereotypical, of course. The screening was held at the Anthology Film Archives building on the edge of the East Village and the Lower East Side. Located in an old Courthouse building, the organization geniously plugged up the buildings beautifully detailed windows to create 2 theatres inside.

Full story »

Road to Roubaix

by Jack  


The 8th Annual Bicycle Film Festival is coming to New York City on May 28th. A series of independent films, both long and short, will be screened at the 5 day festival. STL will be there to watch the world premiere of Road to Roubaix on June 1st. Watch the trailer.

Here's a brief description of the film from it's website:

    "Road to Roubaix is a visual narrative of an old-school, bare-knuckle clash of the finest athletes in the world with each other and one of the world’s most unforgiving sporting environments. The filmmakers will tell the story of the riders, the fans, the mechanics, and the unpredictable landscape that is the setting for the Paris-Roubaix."

For those of you interested in viewing this film, The Bicycle Film Festival will hit a few other major cities in the states and the world after New York. Please click here to find out more.

Stay tuned for a report about the film.

Bike Month NYC 2008

by Jack  


Did you know that May is Bike Month here in New York City? If you ride the subways you will see the ads plastered on the train cars. It's a great initiative to get people out and on their bikes. Bike New York's 5-borough tour, the ride my wife and I did last week was one of the major events. All of this bike talk reminds me of what my favorite NYC ride is.

The most thrilling bike route in Manhattan for me is on 5th Avenue from E. 90th St south to you name it! It was always a way for me to inject some excitement to the end of my ride in Central Park. As some of you know, riding around and around the park can be a bit boring, kind of NASCAR like. So when my ride ends, I exit the park at E. 90th and continue south on 5th. The thrill comes immediately. As I ride past 86th St, I know the transverse is near, meaning a boat load of cars wanting to cut me off. Then comes the Met, ah those tourists. The Met is very challenging in that you never know when a cab will want to pull over to the curb. Couple that with the ubiquitous tour buses and you have the game of Frogger! But that's not it. Do some of these tourists know to look both ways before crossing? Nothing is more embarrassing than crashing, I mean bumping, into a tourist after using your ninja-like reflexes to avoid a few tons of steel!

Okay, so that only gets me to E. 79th St, another transverse, ditto. From there, it's E. 72nd St. This intersection is not too hard because there's no transverse. You do, however, want to avoid those damn buses turning from 72nd and immediately gunning for that bus stop on 5th. But they have the right of way, you say? Duh! Red light = ride faster to avoid the oncoming traffic!

Please wear a helmet.

The ride can go on and on, but I chose to turn off of 5th to head home (no, I don't live on the UES anymore). Plus, you get the picture. And please, safety first. I don't recommend this unless you are a NYC bike messenger.

Do you have a favorite ride in NYC? If so, let's hear about it.

Bike New York - The Aftermath

by Jack  

We're back, we did it. In all, we rode for 51 miles today, including the extra miles getting to the start and getting home from the end. I'm too tired to write more. I will update this post later with some images.
Ok, I'm back. It's been 6 days. My wife and I have fully recovered though we can't commit to when we'll be back on our bikes again. This ride was indeed a personal triumph for us.

Full story »

Bike New York - 5 Borough Tour!

by Jack  


My wife and I are getting ready to do the 5 borough bike tour here in New York City tomorrow morning (see the link). We've been busy trying get some miles in for the last month. It's been hard, the weather hasn't been as warm as we'd like so we are very short on training. Of course, we've been trying to save the legs as often as possible.

For those of you that aren't familiar with this ride, it is a yearly event that takes ten's of thousands of riders through the closed streets of Manhattan, The Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn and yes, Staten Island. Though, we barely touch The Bronx and Staten Island. It is 42 miles through the canyons of Manhattan, the concrete of the FDR and the steel of some of New York City's most famous bridges. We start in lower Manhattan and travel up 6th Avenue, through Central Park, up into Harlem and over into The Bronx. From there, we return into Manhattan, ride south on the FDR and the cross over into Queens via the Queensboro Bridge. Astoria Park is next where there is a huge festival. Then it's due south through Brooklyn. We travel on the BQE making our way towards the Verrazano Bridge. From there, we cross over into Staten Island where the finish line is.

I'm out of breath, so wish us luck!