Tuesday, June 30, 2009

How's about we talk up Soldier Ride 2010?

So it looks like the Wounded Warrior Project have made their tentative schedule for SoldierRide 2010. The Lone Star State schedule is San Antonio – Austin – Dallas, TX, March, 17-21, 2010. Wow, we get to ride with a tailwind!!! Outstanding! The start is in San Antone on Wednesday, so that gives to thoughts of riding to the ride again.

A motivated team of individuals could make San Antone in 2 days from DFW, but 3 days would give time for beer and cigars. Just a thought. At any rate, this format of starting South and ending North works great for DFW folks. If you have 3 days off, you could drive down to SA and start there. Only 2 days off? How about starting in Austin? And when we're done, it's just a hop, skip and a jump back home.

Of course we'll be trying to raise money and awareness again, but I don't believe they have it set up just yet.

Have a great day everyone, let's talk soon.


Thursday, May 21, 2009

Okay, yeah - it's been awhile...

Too long, for sure. Lots of work, lots of traveling, personal changes... Maybe I can start making up for lost time.

I got an email yesterday from Jack Compton, who rode with us on the 1st Coast to the Coast. He says he's been riding a lot lately, unlike some of us, and he's traded one of his straight-up roadies for a sweet Cannondale tourer.

Apparently the bug bit hard - he's in the initial planning stages of his own tour, from Houston, to New York City, with a goal of ending there on September 11th, 2009.

This is part of what he had to say about it:

While the Department of Veteran’s Affairs provides numerous programs, there are many Veteran’s needs that are not covered by the U.S. Government and often the resources that are available take much more time than necessary for them to be effective. The need for a third party entity to provide Veteran’s advocacy is necessary to fill gaps in the VA programs and to provide faster response to the needs of our Veteran‘s. Our intention is not to reinvent the wheel here. The Soldier’s Angels (SA) and Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) are doing an outstanding job in providing for wounded Veteran’s in their transition from battlefield to rehabilitation to civilian life and beyond. Our intention is to simply provide SA & WWP with the money to be able to keep doing what they do so well. During this time of economic trouble and with the expense of healthcare, it is even more important that we ensure our Veteran’s are being cared for in a manner commensurate with the manner in which they performed their duty for us.

We propose to ride the approximate 1600 miles from the Department of Veteran’s Affairs Regional Office (VARO), Houston, Texas to the World Trade Center Memorial (WTCM), New York, New York in an effort to raise awareness of the 31k+ wounded Veterans, to demonstrate the need for a third party advocacy group and to raise $5.5 million for direct Veterans assistance. We are providing for those who provided for us (actually, we are those who provided trying to get others to provide for the rest of us...).

Project Participants
Latseen & Jessica Benson
Jack & Theresa Compton
Nieves Rodriguez
Charlie Hunt

Good to see Nieves and Charlie will be going along, too. Oughtta be a fun ride, I wish I could go. We should plan to ride along with them for awhile at least.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Day One Dallas VA to West, Texas

78 miles, max headwind of about 12 mph. Just about a perfect day to ride. WAY flatter than last year's route.

When we go to the VA hospital at 7:15 this morning, Channel 5 was already there and Channel 8 was on the phone. I sent out press releases a few day ago, but had not heard if anyone was interested in coming. Penny Kerby from the VA Volunteer Affairs office showed as well.

Team In Training riders Jack Pena and his sons rode out the first 40 miles or so, then headed back, Nice to have them filling out the ranks.

We're bedded down in West. Tomorrow we'll run down to Temple and roll up Nieves Rodrigues, who'll be riding down with us to Corpus.


Friday, February 27, 2009

Lead or follow

Bought a couple of magnetic sings so as we follow the group hopefully we'll be more visiable on the foggy mornings.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Trip Scheduling

Sunday 8 AM - Depart VA Hospital Dallas.
Lunch - On-route lunch in Milford, or Mertens.
Sunday Night - Czech Inn (http://www.czechinnofwest.com/)
NOTE: On-Line registration is not working, call 254-826-0900

Monday AM - Depart West
Lunch - In/Near Southern Waco - PR?
Night - Temple/Belton - La Quinta Belton
229 West Loop 121, Belton, TX 76513

Tuesday AM - Depart Temple/Belton
Lunch - in/near Granger
Night - Pflugerville/Austin
-La Quinta Round Rock South $89 for 2 beds

Wednesday AM - Depart for Mellow Johnny's to Link up with WWP party.
Noon - Join/assist at WWP bike-fitting. Present Handcycle(s)to BAMC.
Night – Holiday Inn South
4892 W US Highway 290, Austin, Texas 78735

Thursday AM - Austin LSS Challenge, leave WWP party at most advantageous point to move toward San Antonio.
Lunch in San Marcos or New Braunfels, depending.
Night - 3855 IH-35 North, San Antonio, TX 78219, phone 210-226-4361

Friday AM - Present Handcycle(s) to BAMC reps
Friday AM - Begin ride with WWP party, splitting off toward Corpus at best opportunity- probably the Alamo.
Friday PM -Late lunch around Floresville
Friday PM - Wave at Priscilla.
Night - Best Western Portland
608 E Broadway St Portland, TX 78374

Saturday AM - take vehicles over bridge for LSCC Registered ride.
Saturday PM - Depart Corpus for DFW(?)

Steve Barlow
Paul Hakes, Sr. Paul Hakes, Jr.
Clifton Montgomery, Daniel Montgomery, Myra Montgomery
Marcelo Nobrega, Samantha Nobrega
Robert Powell
David Hill

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Room Reservations for the Ride

Folks, I've done a little searching along the route. Wednesday and Thursday we will be able to stay at the same hotel with the WWP I think. Dave will probably be able to firm that up with Woody once we get our final headcount. Here's what I found for the other nights:

Sun Mar 8 - West
- Czech Inn (http://www.czechinnofwest.com/) $89 for 2 beds
- NOTE: On-Line registration is not working, call 254-826-0900

Mon Mar 9 - Temple/Belton
- La Quinta Belton $79 for 2 beds

Tue Mar 10 - Pflugerville/Austin
- La Quinta Round Rock South $89 for 2 beds

Wed Mar 11 - Austin w/ WWP Group
- HIExpress South

Thu Mar 12 - San Antone w/ WWP Group
- HI San Antonio

Fri Mar 13 - Portland
- Best Western $89 for 2 beds (1-800-780-7234)


Friday, February 20, 2009

Wrench Night results.

Wrench night went - okay. The cranks and bottom bracket came with a lot of extra spacers and shims for different-sized shells, and no labels or instructions, so it took awhile, but we got those sorted and the cranks eventually installed just fine.

The LBS I ordered the new brake levers from last week apparently decided that when, (after some research), I specifically ordered a pair of "Dia-Compe Tech 77 Straight BMX levers with a 7/8" hinged clamp" that what I REALLY wanted was a set of "Dia Compe Model X Aero Road levers". Doom on me, I didn't check to make sure, hence I didn't have the levers to install last night. I did get to spend a significant amount of time trying to figure out the best way to install them when they DO get here next Thursday, so I'll be ready and get them on when they're in and the job will be done.

To the credit of the local bike shop in question, they did send one of their better wrenches out to help with the work. He knocked a good bit of cussing and head-scratching out of the bottom bracket installation, and they're donating the levers when they come in, to RollAid, so there's no bad feelings there - They're still an awesome shop.

We tried installing a single brake lever on the vertical tube under the bottom bracket shell. I've seen some handbikes set up like that, and it would be an ambidextrous way to mount the brake.

The complication with that is that (1) I decided not to put the shifters on the handpedals and leave them on the downtube so there's not much room for the brake lever and (2) that tube is a 25.4mm tube and I can't find a good lever with a clamp that'll fit. What I'm gonna do is put the brake levers on the sidebars like on this bike. Since the bike in the picture has two brake calipers and mine has one, I'll have to use a cable doubler to run cables from both brake levers to the single caliper.

I decided not to mount the shifters on the handpedals and leave them on the downtube so that the rider can shift either derailleur with either hand, the cables won't get wound around the handpedals, and downtube shifters are vastly more durable and forgiving of error than the STI or trigger shifters I'd planned to put on. Hand-mounted controls would be cooler, but ultimately less useful on a bike with multiple riders. Pics as soon as I get my paws on them.