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  1. #1
    I Wanna Be Sedated
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    Crank The Shield - Reports from the field

    I'll start this thread as a catchall for any and all reports from those of us who may have live or semi-live stories to share over the weekend. I expect to to be on the course observing the events unfold around noon on Friday, assuming my morning apointment with the ortho surgeon goes smoothly and he doesn't decide to start carving me up immediately.

    I better make sure the BlackBerry charger is packed...
    Jouko

  2. #2
    Evil Jr.
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    A word of warning to our semi-eager audience: cell coverage is super-spotty up around there so don't go getting all disappointed if we miss a day!

    EDIT: I suspect I'll be singing this to myself through the bogs quite a bit:

    Last edited by garage monster; 09-16-2010 at 12:15 PM.
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  3. #3
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    I can't find any live coverage of CTS on either Velonews or cyclingnews.com, so what happened/is happening up there today?

  4. #4
    Evil Jr.
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    Wonder of wonders, I have reception!

    It was a great day on the bike. The sun really started to shine just as we tuned onto 118 and I thought to myself "Maybe today's not gonna be so bad after all..."

    The Haliburton Marathon told me all I needed to know about what the conditions were like an it didn't disappoint. Mud puddles of all sizes and depths were the order of the day.

    This was a seriously rugged course that took us from loam to ATV trails to granite and singletrack for 70km. The views were stunning all around.

    With Crank the Shield now in its third incarnation, one of the most interesting aspects for me is the reactions among the first timers. They stare ahead blankly as they crest a rocky outcrop, covered head-to-toe in muck, 40km in. "It's still a long way isn't it?" "Heck yes!"

    Team Monster wrapped up the stage in 7 hours much to our surprise since it felt much quicker than usual. What's really unusual though this time is the number of riders that finished behind us. I heard tell that there were still riders coming in after 7PM.

    Despite Jouko trying to distract me with liberal doses of scotch, I was still concious enough to notice a lot of the usual MTBR suspects on the Day 1 podium: VVagabond, veteran youth, Rkay, Circlip and even that upstart swabag.

    For once, Sean levelled with us about tomorrow. "It's gonna be f**king muddy." Bring it on!
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  5. #5
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    Yeh, the report I got is that it is friggin muddy (more than the first year), and you were lucky to not get a mechanical.
    SUCCESS - To be able to spend life in your own way

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ricksom
    Yeh, the report I got is that it is friggin muddy (more than the first year), and you were lucky to not get a mechanical.
    Just to clarify, it's definitely not muddier than year one. Plenty of slop for all of us to share, but today was generally fairly rideable in spots, but not without it's share of departures from the saddle, inadvertently or otherwise. The good news is that tomorrow's course is definitely dryer. Gonna be another fun day wth some great people.
    A bad day on the bike is better than a good day doing anything else...

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  7. #7
    Evil Jr.
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    Nah, it's WAY better than Year 1. Not quite as perfect as last year but surprisingly awesome!

    Limpy and cranky would best describe the demeanor at breakfast this morning. Down some oatmeal, pancakes, sausage and coffee and off we rode to the remote start.

    Stage 2 is Cranks's signature stage. It's the most demanding and by far my favourite of all three days. Regardless of the weather, you know that by the time you get to White Pine, you have a full slate of bike maintenance ahead of you.

    It starts calmly enough as you climb up a long double-track ascent. It's like being a frog in a pot though as it so slowly gets more and more technical until your bombing through puddles and hucking off granite without a care in the world. Totally huge and massively fun. You come at all sorts of giant outcrops wondering "How am I gonna clear this thing?" And them somehow, through skill and determination you do!

    The beauty of it all hits you when you cross the line, tired and hungry but beaming with the sense of accomplishing something BIG.

    After three years, the mess at White Pine feels like home. When you get there, you know you're over the hump and the relief and joy manifests itself in a raucous dinner scene. We could scarcely jam enough peopele on the benches around our table. As with so many of these things, as great as the riding is, the reason you do it is the people. Nothings builds frinedships faster than shared adversity.

    Day 3 is usually pretty rough on Team Monster but we're feeling great so who knows? This may yet be our most funnest year out here yet!
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by garage monster
    Stage 2 is Cranks's signature stage. It's the most demanding and by far my favourite of all three days. Regardless of the weather, you know that by the time you get to White Pine, you have a full slate of bike maintenance ahead of you.
    Any word on what happened to the Ladies' 40+ field between Friday night and Saturday starting?

    Everybody okay?

    Be tough, like vikings!

  9. #9
    Ms. Monster
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    Quote Originally Posted by kept man
    Any word on what happened to the Ladies' 40+ field between Friday night and Saturday starting?

    Everybody okay?

    Be tough, like vikings!
    RKay's fine, but was having some fairly serious back problems. She opted to join Jouko in the drinking/cheering capacity.

    I'll type a more complete report tomorrow, but on the whole, I had the funnest time yet. Yes, I said funnest.

  10. #10
    Over the bars...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nerdgirl
    Yes, I said funnest.
    Just to be clear then... It was more funner than last year?

  11. #11
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    your results for the 1st two days are already up on the Chico site.
    way to go everyone

  12. #12
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    Holy cr@p! My first mtb stage race can only be described as epic. Thank you to everyone - both old friends and new - for making the best 40th birthday present I could ever have asked for so memorable. Here are a few random and completely memorable moments from my race:

    1. Riding past Jouko while he was enjoying wine and cheese
    2. Bombing down Sir Sam's, turning the corner to go up hill and seeing about 100 riders climbing the switchbacks in single file
    3. The three rednecks on ATV's parked beside the beaver dam on day 1 drinking beer and betting which riders will make it across (apparently I caused redneck #1 to lose a lot of money)
    4. The volunteers at the aid stations whose positive attitude made it so easy to get back on the bike and keep going after 15km of wading through bogs
    5. The view from the hydrocut trail on day 3
    6. Hitting 85 km/h downhill on a fully rigid singlespeed on day 2
    7. The fact that I couldn't get the theme from "Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends" out of my head for most of Stage 2;
    8. The awesome view from the top of the Frost Centre singletrack on day 1;
    9. A certain Trek store mechanic, despite it being 10.00 at night, and despite him having about 30 more bikes to repair before he got to sleep, taking the time to make sure my brakes were perfectly set up for day 2
    10. Riding across the finish line this morning, and having Chico hand me a Crank the Shield ball cap, then congratulating me on a great ride.

    Thanks to all race organizers, participants and volunteers for making this such an unforgettable event. I will be back in 2012. Hopefully it won't rain...
    Strava made me do it....

  13. #13
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    If I had to sum up CTS 2010 in one word: OWW

    If I had to sum up CTS 2010 in one facetious picture from the internet:


  14. #14
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    Tough weekend for the racers and at times even for those of us who couldn't race. I suffered with some hydration related issues (blurry vision, shaky hands, light dizziness) throughout the weekend and it made it near impossible to operate the BlackBerry as those keys and fonts really are rather small.

    I probably had more fun this year, sidelined by my own stupidity, than I have had at the previous two CTS events. Great friends, fantstic organization and oh-so-relaxing to drive from point to point to observe people racing.

    Tired and trying sift through pictures to find some that are presentable.

    Here's a couple of young whippersnappers who didn't lack speed and a sampling of elite level spectator nutrition....
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Crank The Shield - Reports from the field-dave.jpg  

    Crank The Shield - Reports from the field-matt.jpg  

    Crank The Shield - Reports from the field-peter.jpg  

    Crank The Shield - Reports from the field-oggie.jpg  

    Crank The Shield - Reports from the field-fuel.jpg  

    Jouko

  15. #15
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    You can find a few more pictures from days 2 and 3 here:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jouko64...7624868504735/
    Jouko

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jouko
    You can find a few more pictures from days 2 and 3 here:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/jouko64...7624868504735/
    Thanks for cheering us on this weekend. Crank wouldn't have been the same without ya. Seeing you and RKay out there helped a lot!
    Good luck today!

    This is awesome:



    I know just how Peter is feeling at that moment. He puts it much more eloquently than I could have. I couldn't speak coherently for a good 20 minutes after stage 2.

    Yes, 2010 Crank was ridiculous but in a very good way!

  17. #17
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    ... and if we just ... Bruised from being in the field

    Quote Originally Posted by Jouko
    I'll start this thread as a catchall for any and all reports from those of us who may have live or semi-live stories to share over the weekend. I expect to to be on the course observing the events unfold around noon on Friday, assuming my morning apointment with the ortho surgeon goes smoothly and he doesn't decide to start carving me up immediately.

    I better make sure the BlackBerry charger is packed...
    Well, all I can say is, fan**ckingtastic! Hopefully the thread editors don't get that one as there is not much of another way to describe this event this weekend, despite the mud. Personally, this was my most fun of the three years participating. Partly due to personal preparedness, but mostly due to spending it with great friends and meeting some new ones to boot. Highlights in no particular order are below.

    1. Well, this was number one actually. Riding up beside another rider in my category 5km after busting an eggbeater pedal 10km into Stage one and asking him sheepishly if he has a spare seeing he's riding them too. Yep, he had one, helped me change it, and made my day. Only happens at a race like this. Thanks Tony, again.

    2. Swapping war stories every night on the on course exploits with cabin-mates.

    3. Meeting some new folks from Quebec out on the trail and chatting with them for extended periods of stage one and three. They apparently don't have anything that compares to this kind of event there. Stage two, one of the fellows named Simon was kind enough to drag my sorry butt for a bit during a poor fueling segment for 500 metres. I suggested he not drag himself down any longer, but again, so awesome to have this kind of team work out there.

    4. Laughs, so many of them. Highlighted by the final morning exchange between two apparent team-mates outside another cabin. I didn't witness it, but Okosolo and a couple others in our cabin did and there recounts of it were priceless. Oggie, you may correct me on this, but essentially one dude exploded on his demanding team-mate about "F-this" and that and "I am tired of your *****!" inclusive of "I didn't even want to do this race and you talked me into it". Oggie, please do share as we were busting our guts recounting it yesterday morning following.

    5. Chico's continued ability to pull it all together and keep everyone smiling. Sure, it was very wet, but folks know they can't control that. The format of the event is great, food great, accommodations great, and atmosphere second to none. Sharing the pain with many on the forum here and other friends made for me the best race weekend of year.

    Barring some unforeseen circumstance, I will surely be back in 2012 when Chico refreshes CTS with what he hopes is some new trails from my understanding. Great job by everyone out there! The massage tomorrow is going to be painful due to the bruising

    Cheers,

    Neil
    A bad day on the bike is better than a good day doing anything else...

    http://www.apexracephotography.com

  18. #18
    Ms. Monster
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    Day 1:
    Some crazy slippy technical stuff right off the start. Fun if you could get it. Heard the longest stream of profanity up the trail as Unglued got unglued. Because of the rain the day before, there was some gloopy gloopy mud. The Northshore trail (after the CTS trail) was just as unrideable as in the Marathon, but at least I was ready for it. That broke a lot of people, I think. After that, the stage was much like previous years. Some dirt road, some fun ATV trails with bogs (more than last year; less than year 1, and way more ride-arounds). When we got to the end, I felt great and was surprised by the amount of time it took. I bet most of the time was pushing the bike up the Northshore trail (Sean - seriously? I hate this trail. Fix it!). Totally chicked Unglued.

    Day 2: This has always been my favourite day. I know, I'm weird.
    The first half of the course was beautiful exposed rock, multi-line, bog-trolling fun. Ended up with a bunch of good riders and we were taking turns gambling with the good lines through the bogs. So rewarding when you get it! Passed a bunch of guys on a downhill, rockin' the rigid bike. W00t! From there, Sean switched up the course so we wouldn't end on rail trail or need a shuttle. Fun rolling roads and an epic paved descent. A logging truck pulled in behind me at the top and I tucked for all I was worth to pull away from it. I'm sure it's the fastest I've ever gone on a mountain bike. Awesome!!! Beautiful scenery and a better finish than last year. Chicked Unglued again.

    Day 3: Incredible new start to the day at Sir Sam's. We got ourselves to the Sir Sam's start (13 km away from camp) at our own pace, which, as a singlespeeder, I so appreciate, as "neutral" starts always KILL me. Having done a Super-D there earlier in the year, I knew the goodies to come, but wasn't sure how well it would work to pack so many people in so quickly. Well, it worked great. The pack got spread out going up some road to the top of the hill. We rode the HUGE berms from the Super-D course down, then threaded our way back up some very pleasant (and singlespeed friendly!) switchbacks. I'd love to see a picture of that, because it looked amazing from the middle. Then we swept into part of the downhill course (jumps roped off), which was wicked technical fun. After that, some road with fantastic views, the Hydrocut trail (pretty and fun, with some wicked descents). The end, as usual, was punishing, with the amazing techy bits of singletrack interspersed with greasy/peanut butter/too steep to ride bits. These trails tease you! Gorgeous fall weather and just relaxed and enjoyed the last bit. Chicked by Unglued, but got him on the Overall. Happy Birthday! Oh, and we totally beat Seamus McGrath and Mark Summers! (Mr. McGrath was riding with weekend warriors and Mr. Summers was mid-pack sweep, but it's the only time it'll EVER happen, so I have to make the most of it!)

    As usual, the real joy in Crank is the end of season celebration with friends and the general camaraderie. I'm a bit sad that they won't run this next year, but at least I get to try Paul's. Their plan is to do a one-day thing next year, and do the full CTS every other year.

    I think this year had the longest times logged yet, because there was more walking (especially on Day 1), but we really lucked out with the weather (again). The trails are RUGGED and very different from Southern Ontario riding, but you get a great sense of accomplishment at the end of each day.

    My legs are toast (and somewhat bruised), but I had no big crashes. A great end to a busy busy mountain biking season. Thanks Chico!

  19. #19
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    the morning after...
    feeling kinda empty... missing the breakfast buzz... missing all the scrubby and swollen faces... My bike is in the process of being taken apart to the last nut and bolt... Yeah, it was ridiculous, in that good MTB way... Hats off to all finishers... It is easy for Peter Glassford to mumble after his 3 and change hours on the course... Kudos to those gritty weekend warriors that live ordinary lives in between these races... 6 or 7 hours on the course for three days - now that is ridiculous...

    Good racing VVagabond... You looked really strong throughout the race... RKay - way to fight till the body refuses to cooperate... Heartbreaking to see you in pain... Jouko - I am sure you'd rather have "more" fun in the saddle, but that will have to wait until 2012. Thanks for the cheer and "spirit"... noggs - monster racing dude... it would have been nice to see you on the podium on stage 2... You deserved it... However, Dicky is allright... mostly... Monsters - always with the grin on their faces, even after day 2. LeHair had his hard hat on and worked hard through the hamstring injury, which went away as the race progressed... Way to tough it through...

    Circlip - strong show, top start then tough fail and then character come back on the last day... Well deserved podium finish in fiercely fought 40-49 category... Needless to say - he always picked the best bunk at the cabins.... He was the first back...

    jackattack, his club mate Craig and myself had our own mini race within the race... The three of us placed within a couple of minutes after 3 days of racing... Strong show on day one jacks...

    My race included all well known feelings that go along with these kind of races.... I decided to pull out after 12kms on day one, for what I thought was a terminal mechanical on my bike... My cranks were turning terribly hard, even with no load... I thought my bottom bracket bearings failed after 12kms of gritty, mucky, sticky and never ending mud...

    Had to stop a few times to try to figure out what it was, but due to sheer amount of the mud in the drivetrain, I couldn't diagnose the issue... Made it somehow to the first aid station and decided to take the cranks off... It turned out to be the metal plate that protects the carbon chainstays from the chainsuck.... Chainsuck caused it to crumble and bend into the chain rings, rubbing horribly... Had to use the hammer for few minutes, to bend it back to the point that cranks would turn without much rubbing... But hey, I didnt have to pull out... Game on... From the feeling of "I wan't to go home right now" to the feeling - "I can actually pedal again"... From the bottom to the top in the span of a dozen of minutes....

    The amount of "Oggie are you ok", "Oggie, have you got what you need", "Oggie do you need help" from the racers passing by on the course - was heartbreaking and incredibly motivating... That is why I will be coming back to race this race until my body can cash cheques that my mind will want to cut... Day 1 was character building... Harder than expected, even harder with mechanicals...

    Day 2 has always been the doom day for me - the amount of dismounts and hike a bikes through the mud is just too hard on me... Hung on noggs wheel at the beginning and we had an awesome time flying, crawling, snorkelling, climbing and at golden times even riding the mud and bogs... Noggs was at the top of his game - didn't stop talking and most of his speeches were very motivational. Some of them I didn't hear... But I know he was talking... Even when he couldn't brake down some steep technical descents and was opting to endo in order to scrub some speed off and in an effort to save brake pads... I didn't understand it, but he was happy with it...

    Passed by the "dirty dozen" shack. No mullets this time around, they were all on their ATVs riding around...

    I'll take the rail trail back... The final road section was a killer. Please re-instate the rail trail or something similar...

    My brake pads were down to the metal... Still worked though... This is the first time it happened to me in 10 years... Went through two sets of pads, completely...

    Day 3 started with a 10km warmup ride to the Sir Sam's... What an epic scene, with 3 hundred cyclists climbing up the hill in single file zig-zag 5% incline to the top... Awesome... Exhilarating feeling, if it wasn't for these damn legs that felt kinda numb... But everyone was in the same bag... Except for the skinnies at the front...

    Sir Sams was fun... Descent was quite fine on our legs... Road race to the Hydro Cut was hard... Hydro Cut was fun... and fun didn't stop until the finish line...

    I really enjoyed this race - without trying to sound like a broken record or using cliche - This was the best CTS so far... What a rewarding sense of accomplishment it is...

    Heartfelt thank you to all participants that I crossed path with. Huge thanks goes to all the volunteers... Angry Johnny, Brian and the rest - this race would not be the same without them.... Ruppel family and Chico and Superfly teams - thank you for working hard on organizing another perfect event.

    I am just scratching the surface with this rant, more memories will come by and we will toss them in as they come...

    yeah, that was ridiculous... completely, f-ing and totally awesomely ridiculous...

    I am so happy that I was a part of it - again.
    Last edited by osokolo; 09-20-2010 at 08:17 AM.

  20. #20
    Ms. Monster
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    A couple of other notes:

    - I was totally braking with my backing plates by the end of day 2. So loud!

    - I think the short course was a good idea. On days 2 and 3 in particular, it provided an easy out for people who were hurt or really suffering. It was only a little disappointing on day 2 to discover that many of the people we'd been racing with through the bogs were on the short course and thus bailing at the feed station. Damn!

  21. #21
    Evil Jr.
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    Quote Originally Posted by veteran_youth
    If I had to sum up CTS 2010 in one word: OWW
    With all the bushwhacking and mud-bogging you do for three days, the shower I take when we get home on Sunday night is always quite revealing.

    Arms and legs are covered in hundreds of narrow cuts. A chunk of my left knee has gone AWOL. There's a spot on my butt that'll need a few days' worth of antiseptic ointment. Good times!

    After that, I settled into the couch in my pajamas and popped open a great big bottle of Champagne I'd left in the fridge in the wee hours on Friday morning. For Mrs. Monster, 2010 is in the bag and it was a great success. la vie!
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  22. #22
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    This was the first time doing this race, and I also had a great time!

    I was locked in an epic battle in the 30-39 group for first place, where we finished separated by 22 seconds! Sadly, I was on the losing end - the 22 seconds were a result of me cramping in the last km on the first day! The next two days we rode together testing each other over and over again. It was HARD racing.

    I'm pretty sure I met some of you, but I didn't catch anyone's names. The people and the food made this event for sure!

  23. #23
    Evil Jr.
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    Part of what makes stage racing (and CTS in particular) so much fun is that no matter where you are in the GC, you feel like Glassford looks in that video when you cross the line. There are epic battles everywhere from first place to last!
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbmeister

    1. Well, this was number one actually. Riding up beside another rider in my category 5km after busting an eggbeater pedal 10km into Stage one and asking him sheepishly if he has a spare seeing he's riding them too. Yep, he had one, helped me change it, and made my day. Only happens at a race like this. Thanks Tony, again.

    Neil
    Hey, aren't you the guy who sold me the magura marta SL brake pads? Thanks again, I really needed them. It's crazy how many little stories like this happened over the weekend where guys just happen to have equipment others needed.

    I went through 3 sets of brake pads over the weekend it you can believe it - I only brought two sets with me though - you think that would have been enough!!

  25. #25
    That's not a W
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    Quote Originally Posted by Overkill
    This was the first time doing this race, and I also had a great time!

    I was locked in an epic battle in the 30-39 group for first place, where we finished separated by 22 seconds! Sadly, I was on the losing end - the 22 seconds were a result of me cramping in the last km on the first day! The next two days we rode together testing each other over and over again. It was HARD racing.

    I'm pretty sure I met some of you, but I didn't catch anyone's names. The people and the food made this event for sure!
    Yeah, Linda and Tammy in the under 40 women were only 17 seconds apart. That's pretty nutty after three days of chaos like that.

    Great job Overkill! Not bad for your first Crank. I was super impressed by your times.

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