Category Archives: Sponsor Shoutout
Disclaimer: My teammates asked that I (Katey M.) write up this team race report and I acquiesced. While I can’t rightfully speak for the group, I can only provide my amateur insight, my thoughts and in return, hope I don’t piss the hell out of anyone. Enjoy!
I am not your typical racer – I prefer long solo rides, hiking tall peaks and taking Reposado shots over carbon fiber wheels, Strava kudos and Garmin stats. However, when an email was sent out to the team about a 24 hour mountain bike race in Tuscon, I jumped at the chance thinking it was time to kick start my season. 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo is known for being the largest national MTB race and hosts some 4,000 mountain bikers, gathering a mosh pit of amateur and pro racers from around the country. A windswept cacti- clad dessert is transformed into a prickly mecca of motorhomes, tents and porta potties. The course is a fast, furious 16.1 mile loop with small bouts of technical sections and 1,200ft climb. It hosts a few namesakes too. “The Bitches” are a series of small punchy climbs and decent in the first few miles of the course. While they seem mundane during a pre-ride, they are hellish at race pace. Lots of flesh has been lost on The Bitches and helicopters evacuate racers every year. Also, an aptly named “Whiskey Tree” houses bottles of moonshine, Hot Damn and various other adult libations mid-course and many a sauced fellow can be seen hooting happily by the tree as you pass. The course also hosts a rock drop. While it’s not terribly daunting, pack a handful of bikers close together and if one slightly balks, it could spell broken bones. The course offers a choice – to rock drop or not. A life size Justin Bieber cutout points to the “Belieber” route which avoids the drop, while the “Biker” route includes it. Belieber or not, you can tell, mountain bike racing is not for the fanatically clean of mouth or body. While gorgeous, expensive mountain bikes are appreciated; how you ride your beast is even more important. Tattoos, beards and beer guts are commonplace yet despite the looks, these folks can seriously rip but they also play hard too.
Heidi2 (Heidi Gurov) and I made our way to Tucson Thursday morning. The race was scheduled to start Saturday at noon. Heidi1 (Heidi Wahl) and Rachel decided to make the 18 hour trek by car. Heidi2 peppered me with stats about the race and her coach’s training schedule. She was prepared and truthfully, I felt sick. I hadn’t been on my mountain bike in three months. The last time I was actually on my MTB was a drunken pub crawl where I flipped a guard rail and broke my hanger. She was anxious to get there early, build her beloved Fate, and get out on the course. Sadly, even with our 85 mile an hour tailwind, we had a minor hiccup which forced a five and a half hour delay [read: RV trouble] We were to be picked up in our rented RV at the airport by Rachel’s friend, John. John had been working quietly behind the scenes along with Heidi1 to organize this trip and help with RV procurement, delivery, and tying up loose ends for us. Truly this man became our kit clad angel. Our RV, the Flying Dutchman, had other ideas because this behemoth decided to lie down and play dead in the airport’s cell phone waiting area with a dangerously bald, stripped to the steel belts, remains of a tire. After an abundance of calls, a tow truck, and stop at Discount Tire, we were back on course. John had befriended a race bound fellow who held anot RV spot for us. Camp space fills up wicked fast so this was music to our ears. I hugged the guy and his girlfriend even though I didn’t know them from Adam.
We made our way to the site careening down dusty roads, we looked like an episode from Breaking Bad. “Let’s cook!” Heidi2 posted keeping the world appraised of our status. My cell service left me in Tucson and wouldn’t return until after I got back to civilization a few days later. Damn you, T-Mobile.
Camp was set, bikes were built, beer was welcomed along with an odd assortment of foodstuffs including one jar of dill pickles; a request from Heidi1 which made me question an impending pregnancy but no, I found that they were simply salty, crunchy goodness after an especially mind bending lap. God bless you, jar o’ pickles.
The next day was a bluebird day and our pre-ride. I had heard about the cactus and it prickly fangs but my tires had seen nor heard nothing about these Arizona natives. ” YOU DONT HAVE STANS? DUDE,YOU NEED STANS. Behind my back whispers: “She’s running tubes! She’s gonna diiiiie.” Bewildered looks and shaking heads. “My first thought was “uh…who is Stan and why does he care so very much about my bike”. Between the group of very patient and kind souls in my group, they explained tubeless tires and that it was virtually impossible to ride the course without them. I converted that morning to Stans while Heidi2, Rachel, and Kalan (a twitterpated soul who kept us laughing the entire time) rode the course. Heidi2 shopped in 24 Hour town and I spun in circles on a Green Machine while they converted my bike. I have to say that was the best impromptu decision I’ve made in years and it ticked off another niggling inadequacy I had about racing my bike.
Race day came quickly, Bikes were staged at the bottom of a hill where the Lemans start ended. Hilarity ensued. Fit and fearsome men in pro team kits fought their way down the hill in slippery bike shoes, some were trampled and still fought their way to their bikes. Heidi2 waved our makeshift Naked flag for Rachel to see while she came down the hill. Rachel was far ahead of the masses and one of the first out on her bike and on the course. We hooted and hollered and cheered her on. A few minutes later a Pooh Bear skipped merrily along looking for his bike. Not everyone was taking this race seriously.
Rachel raced hard pressing for fastest female lap and came through with a mind altering 1:09 lap time. I was next in line. I stood in the staging area with music vibrating in my ears to calm my nerves. For a 24 hour race, each relay team is given a small wooden baton. You are required to pass this baton from teammate to teammate. Lose your baton and well, you DNF. Point is: don’t lose the baton. We tried shoving it down sport bras (didn’t work) and settled for the front of leg or back jersey pocket. In the staging area where you wait for your teammate to pass the baton, a large projector screen displays arriving team numbers on the ceiling along with an emcee who also doles out bad jokes (ie What do you call a cow with three legs? Ground Beef) Rachel came flying in and our transition was smooth. I had staged my bike outside the tent further than the multitudes because I knew I could run through the first section faster and have more room to hop on my bike. The course was fast and hellishly narrow through a variety of cactus – some have cruel fishing hooks covering their bodies, some look like soft little teddy bears but with razor sharp paws and some cactus just want to kiss you for no apparent reason. Know this, if you are not dead center on the trail, the cactus gods become enraged. They will gather, display their meaty, needle sharp armored bodies and eat you alive. No, seriously dude, they will.
Even giving cactus wide berth, I knew this race was going to be tough. I hadn’t properly trained and I got passed by a multitude of men flying by me at staggering speeds. It seemed like they were floating through the air while I mashed my pedals. The headwind was brutal and sadly I became the one to pull everyone through the cactus corridors. Letting all these men pass me was humbling. I told one racer to pass on the left, he passed on the right and knocked me into a cactus. It stung but I kept going with this large thorny mass attached to my glove. It took pliers and a steady hand from Heidi1 to pull them out after my lap. I came into the staging area with a 1:22 lap time. Heidi2 took off like a rabbit on her lap and came in with an impressive 1:14 time. Heidi1 was next in line and crushed it with a 1:23. We were already in the lead with sub 1:30 laps and it gave us incentive to keep it that way. Rachel went out for her second lap with night lights just in case but she came in so quickly with a 1:13 that dusk had barely begun. I took our first official night lap. I can’t speak for the others, but I prefer riding at night. By this second lap, racers has spread out significantly making it easier to maneuver however, my head lamp burned out part way through so I eeked my way to the finish and came in with a 1:24. Heidi2 came in for her first night lap with 1:18 and Heidi1 with a 1:33. We were still almost an entire lap ahead of the second place team.
Nutrition and recovery is critical for these longer races – that is, if you want to win. You rest, you eat, you digest best you can, repair any bike issues and before you know it you’re dressed again and on your way to the staging area. For me, sleep was elusive as was digestion. Somehow it behooved me to eat about 2lbs of pork with green chilis after the second lap. In those wee hours in the morning, my stomach decided to revolt. I found out this is called “gut rot”. When really you should just throw up, I rolled around like a flatulent otter in the RV. One of the guys gave me a shot of Pepto. I didn’t have the wherewithal to ask if this pink goo was gluten free cause the porta potty was my BFF already. We still pulled off some amazing night times and kept our lead but it started to get a little closer with a bad crash on The Bitches that kept Rachel at a standstill for a spell.
Since three of my four laps were at night, I feel I got the best deal watching the sun come over the horizon to start the new day. The sky was this amazing blood red. While I rode, this guy and I talked about how vivid, saturated, and beautiful the sky was. I was tired yet I realized I was blessed to be a part of this community of fast fit women cyclists and this temporary 24 hour community of mountain bikers.
Final laps were made and the line up changed toward the end leaving Heidi2 and Rachel to secure our win (despite getting a flat in the final lap two miles in on The Bitches). Heidi1 gave us 3 impressive laps, me with 4 laps, Heidi2 with 5 and Rachel with 6. 288 miles and 18 laps brought us the first place win. We were ecstatic and very proud Naked girls on the podium. We celebrated briefly, packed up quickly and 24 hour town deconstructed in moments. What once was brimming with activity a few hours earlier became a quiet, sleepy venue with an epic trail– restored to what it is year round. This race has become a memory of comradery, patience, a few scratches, and one remaining half jar of pickles.
Bike Maintenance Advanced Clinic: Un-smashing your rims, de-grinding your gears and how to properly tape your bike together
In case you don’t already know, Turin Bicycles rocks. Their support for Naked Women’s Racing already places them in the rocker category, but Thursday night, a couple of their mechanics stayed late to show a room of women how to get greasy and keep their cranks turning. Steve made every topic approachable and easy to follow, without dumbing anything down or the air of condescension that often keeps women away from pulling out the tool box.
The advanced clinic was a follow-up on the beginner clinic. The night’s topics:
- Keeping the Rear Derailleur on the Rails (derailleur adjustment)
- Keeping Your Wheels Round (truing)
- Taping Your Bike Up (handlebar taping)
- If you really smash your rim up and need to get yourself home, carefully place your hands halfway along the arc between the two bent points, raise the wheel above your head and bring it smashing down onto a rock or hard ground. Repeat as needed until desired shape is acquired.
- Don’t touch the Limit Screws. You’ll probably only screw them up. It’s nothing against you, they just don’t like the attention. And if you do screw them up you’ll regret it.
- If you break a spoke, twist the broken spoke around a good one to avoid whacking the frame.
- It doesn’t matter which way you wrap your bar tape, as long as you wrap it the right way.
- Cork bar tape looks and feels amazing, but will make you grumpy if you wrap your own, and your mechanic grumpy if you bring it in.
If you wanted to know all the secrets, you would have had to come to the clinic. Until you get to a clinic of your own, just make sure to invite a tech-savvy girl on your rides to get you out of a tight spot.
Back by popular demand, we’ve compiled the 2014 annual holiday gift guide for that special cyclist in your life. Remember, whatever the price, if it makes her happy, just buy it!
None of us got into cycling to ride a trainer, but now that we’re in it, sometimes you have to to combat the short days and cold weather. And you need a trainer that can stand up to your training. Cascade Fluid Pro is tough enough for you to stand in the saddle and really put the power down.
Pair a Cascade trainer with a good Sufferfest video, that will keep you suffering indoors and having fun doing it. Don’t chase the paint on the wall, chase the Maillot Jaune up the Alpe d’Hues.
Know a lady who won’t hang up the bike after August? Studded snow tires will get her to work in the worst of conditions without torn clothes and bruises, and can keep her pedaling through the days cars splash slush from the road on hearty cyclists.
Mad Alchemy Warming Embrocation
Mad Alchemy Embrocation is great when you are prepared to take on the cold and wet. It keeps you waterproof and windproof and toasty. It is made locally, and makes the locals’ extremities warm and yummy smelling.
Leg and knee warmers only go so far if you don’t have thermals on your hips. Stay cozy without getting overheated and layer tights or warmers as needed. Plus, keep wearing your favorite lightweight women’s chamois.
Get accurate readings on how much power you are laying down in your pain cave with the tiny, discreet, lightweight and accurate power meter built into your crank arm from Stages Cycling.
The Feed makes staying fueled with complete nutrition in the winter easy. Pick what you want to take on your rides from a huge list of sports nutrition and get a monthly delivery with all your favorite kinds. The Pro Box is packed with delicious and healthy sports nutrition, ready to drop off at your door. It’s giving the gift of relief every time your favorite lady athlete grabs for something to munch on a long, cold ride.
Winter months require lens choices: Sometimes you are riding in nearly dark conditions, while others the snow is so reflective only the darkest lenses will do. Airblast glasses offer full coverage from splash without fogging up and lens colors can easily be swapped between red, transparent and copper tints.
You can be as tough as anything, but if you can’t keep your feet warm and dry, you won’t last outside for long. The Sidi Breeze Rain is a warm, waterproof ankle boot for any condition.
Turin Bicycles gift certificate
‘Tis the season for frequently breaking components — the elements aren’t kind to our bicycles. Trust that her ride will need a tune up, and help her get what she needs from expert mechanics at Turin.
It’s hard to believe our road season is done and cross has really just begun! You know what also is beginning? Planning for your team in 2015! Naked Women’s Racing, in it’s 5th year, is open to race team applicants through October 1st!
Think you want to join? Read more about why you should on our Race Team page. Now are you ready?
Think you *might* want to race but not sure you want to dive in head first? Then you should totes join our Club Team!
Got questions? Email us at info [at] nakedwomenracing.com and we’ll be glad to help you out.
We love our sponsors, especially if they are there to help us win! Read more on how Sidi rescued Megan at the Winter Park series, carrying her all the way to victory!
All the credit for my win at Winter Park last week goes to Sidi Sports and the Alpinestars rep. You see, I made the mistake of waiting until the morning of the race to pack my bag for Winter Park. After the 1.5 hour drive to Winter Park, I arrived at the resort just over an hour before the race. Only then did I realize I had forgotten my shoes. Other than a bike, it’s probably the single most important item to remember. The last time I forgot my shoes was in 1999 when I drove 45 min from Urbana, Il to the nearest mountain bike park. After that disappointing experience, I diligently double-checked my bag for 15 years….until that day.
Fortunately, fate was on my side. After running from trailer to trailer and store to store to see if anybody had a womens size 7 shoe to rent or borrow, I ended up at the Alpinestars tent. It turned out the Alipinestars and Sidi reps were traveling together. They sent me to the Sidi truck, fitted me with demo shoes and, since they didn’t have cleats compatible with my pedals, a big pair of their new enduro pedals. The pedals were huge compared to my tiny Crank Brothers Egg Beaters, but I actually enjoyed having the large platform under my foot and even found I had more confidence on the technical sections. I also had no trouble adjusting to the comfortable shoes. Now if I could just get Sidi to make a carbon mountain bike shoe for women….
Arguably one of the hardest days on a bike in Colorado – the Rapha Gentlemen’s Race. Lanier and Rachel competed with 4 other women from Austin to New York on the Panache Cycle Wear team on the gnarly dirt roads at altitude. Read more about the epic day on the bike.
When Rachel Scott sent a message about the Rapha Gentlemen’s Race, I was intrigued. 100+ miles, most on dirt roads with 35% grades in certain spots – fun! Well, maybe not everyone’s definition of fun but I love a good challenge. We were a 6-person team racing for Panache. Becca put the team together. Laura and Caroline of Austin TX and Abby of NYC arrived in Boulder on Thursday. We got our kits together and arrived at the start line.
When the route came out the week prior, it showed 107 miles with 13,000+ feet of climbing. The time would be taken on the last person of the team to cross the finish line, so we needed to work together to ensure that all finished. The decision was on which bike to ride, and after some emails from Becca, I opted for my Seven ti frame with 28 tire. We made our way up Superflag, Rachel and Becca leading the way. We then wound our way along lots of hard-packed dirt roads after Gross Reservoir. Although the grades on the ascents remained very steep, often 13-15%, the scenery was spectacular. I have grown accustomed to the scenery after living in Colorado so long. Seeing it through Abby, Caroline and Laura’s eyes took my mind off the hard climbing and reminded me how lucky we all were to be riding our bikes with great people in a gorgeous place!
I ran into technical trouble descending a few miles of loose rocky road, and was the last one down. Then we needed to push the pace to get to the cutoff. We were back on hard packed dirt, and several of us were tiring fast. I focused on eating more, but my legs began cramping. Fortunately, Rachel had salt tablets which kept me riding. When we turned on Switzerland trail, I found myself on terrain that I would have struggled with on my CX bike with fresh legs – very loose dirt with bigger rocks than before. My legs began cramping again, and I slid out several times.
So I began walking, feeling 2” high because I knew I was keeping the team from making the cutoff. Rachel came back to check on me, and quickly realized I had mentally given up but that I could still ride. She said it was time for tough love, that the last part of the trail was easier and that I had to get on the bike and to follow her line. For the 2nd time in my life, I cried on a ride. I usually love riding no matter how much I’m hurting, but I did not believe I could ride another mile. But Rachel broke it down into simple commands and after a couple of attempts, I was able to stay upright, clip in and follow her. She talked me through the last 1.5 miles, and by the end I even found a small bit of confidence handling the bike, even if my legs were shaky and weak. It rained a bit, which cooled everything off and made the terrain easier. When we were almost done, I was happy again to be riding. To my eternal gratitude, Rachel helped me finish Switzerland Trail upright!
We shortened the ride afterwards, giving me a chance to chat on one of the descents with our super climber teammate Jamie, who had a great day riding with the Davis Phinney team.
My personal takeaways include making sure that I am fully prepared physically, mentally and skill-wise before signing up for a team effort in the future. But overall, it was a fantastic day riding some incredibly difficult but incredibly beautiful terrain with a great group of women. Many thanks to Rapha for putting the race on, and to our sponsor Panache and Becca for sponsoring a women’s team!
40780 U.S. Highway 6 and 24, Avon, CO 81620
Dominion Voting Systems
1201 18th Street, Suite 210, Denver, CO 80202
Wheat Ridge Cyclery
Address: 7085 W 38th Ave, Wheat Ridge, CO 80033
Evergreen Bicycle Outfitters
Address: 29017 Hotel Way # 101-C, Evergreen, CO 80439
Address: 1254 Bergen Pkwy, Evergreen, CO 80439
Address: 25797 Conifer Rd, Conifer, CO 80433
Community College of Denver Dept. Of Dental Hygiene
1062 akron way bldg 753
Denver CO 80230
First Western Trust
902 Pearl Street, Boulder, Colorado 80302
3170 E. Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80206
3115 E. Colfax Ave
Denver, CO 80206
7555 E. Academy Blvd.
Denver, CO 80230
2700 S. Broadway
Englewood, CO 80113
8500 Park Meadows Dr.
Lone Tree, CO 80124
Kinetic Fitness Studio
2624 E. 3rd Ave.
Denver, Co 80206
7120 E. Orchard Rd.
Centennial, CO 80111
7120 E. Orchard Rd.
Centennial, CO 80111
Pilates of Cherry Creek
100 Garfield St.
Denver, Co 80206
We’re excited to announce our new sponsorship with The Feed! The Feed specializes in providing athletes with the best sports nutrition available to fuel their sport and life. Athletes work with a personalized nutrition coach to get one-on-one advice, form a nutrition plan, and build a fully customized box of nutrition from the best brands, delivered monthly with free shipping. Read more about The Feed, visit www.thefeed.com. Connect with The Feed on Facebook and Instagram too!
You’re 50 miles from home, you’re in the middle of nowhere and you reach in your pocket and suddenly realize you really should have stocked up on bars and gels or anything, because now you have nothing. Does grass have carbs?
This year we’re really excited to be working with The Feed. They’re a sport nutrition delivery company out of Boulder, Colorado that stocks all of our favorite brands in sport nutrition, ships them out every month (to keep you stocked) and works one-on-one with us to develop nutrition plans to support our training, racing and lives.
During training blocks full of long rides we may rely on more PowerBars, and recovery products to keep us going, but as the race season kicks in we’ll find more need for gels, and Brooks works with us to make sure we’re stocked up, and know exactly how, when and why to use certain products.
It’s one thing to have food in your pockets and electrolytes in your bottles, but to actually look forward to the the nutrition, can be a foreign concept to people. That’s where The Feed has been great. Nutrition Coach Brooks recommends products to fuel our training and match our varied tastes, so we’re never bored, never go hungry, and never fear dehydration (thanks Skratch Labs).
Check out the food that fuels the Naked Ladies in our team Feed Box: http://thefeed.com/nakedracing
Things get better with age-like our forth annual Ride for Reading delivery! Join Colorado Women’s Cycling Project (Naked Women’s Racing) for National Ride for Reading Week! See below for a quick synopsis of what Ride for Reading week is all about.
What: Colorado-based women’s competitive cycling team Naked Women’s Racing will deliver thousands of donated children’s books by bicycle to Travista Elementary and Middle School Friday, May 9th for National Ride for Reading Week. Naked Women’s Racing partnered with the charity Ride for Reading, a non-profit with a mission to promote literacy and healthy living through the distribution of books via bicycle to children from low-income neighborhoods.
Who: Cyclists of all shapes, types and sizes! Commuters, mountain bikers, roadies, newbies, masters riders, trackies, unicyclists, tricyclists, bi-cyclists, juniors and more! We are looking for volunteers to join us in our delivery. It will be the most fun you’ve ever had on two wheels.
When: Delivery takes place Friday, May 9 from 8:00 am to 12 pm. We are collecting donations of books and/or cash donations for Ride for Reading from now until delivery date!
Why: In low-income neighborhoods, the ratio of books per child is one age-appropriate book for every 300 children. Reading is an integral part of education, and without books it is hard to build a strong academic base. Our children need materials to read at home and it is our goal to provide the means. And in the process, we can fight childhood obesity and nature deficit disorder through the power of cycling, too! Exercise the mind and body and lead through example.
Where: Fulton Academy of Excellence located at 755 Fulton St. Aurora, CO
Meeting Location: Turin Bicycles at 700 Lincoln Street. Join us at 7 am if you want free breakfast and coffee! Be ready to ride with books in tow by 8 am!
Bike Route: It will be doable by any person of any fitness level on any bike! We assure you, so please join us. It’s only 7.3 miles! We’ll share the bike route the week of the event. We will also have a police escort:)
What to Bring: Bike (duh), helmet, backpack or panniers or some form of bag to carry books by bike. We could use chariots to load extra books so please bring if you have one!
Want to donate books? Here’s all our dropbox locations around your area!
Also, if on Facebook we’ll be updating our event page with new information so join our event there too!
Can’t make the ride but want to help? Donate book at some of our many drop off points around Boulder and Denver! From the Denver Public Library to bike shops all around town. If you can’t find a drop off point on our list, you can also mail book or cash donations (checks made out to Ride for Reading) to:
902 Pearl Street
Boulder, CO 80302
Our dirt diva Brittany J. recapped the cyclocross awards party. Naked cleaned up again. It was one dirty job but these ladies went above and beyond and came out on top!
This last Saturday was the Colorado Cross Cup awards party, and Naked represented well.
For those who are unfamiliar with BRAC’s Cross Cup (or the very similar Road Cup), it is a points system that spans the entire CX season. You earn points both as an individual and as a team based on your results, and some races are weighted more heavily than others.
Our own sponsor in 2013, Prestige Imports, hosted the awards party. Basil Docs supplied a veritable wall of delicious pizza, while Great Divide and Izzie provided libations. There was also a raffle for some pretty nice swag from Rudy Project, Polar, and several others.
As the awards got underway, Jenny Lucke took to the podium. Our rockstar junior not only won the individual racer competition for Jr Women 17-18, she also single-handedly earned a second place spot in the team competition for Naked in the same division.
Jenny wasn’t the only Naked woman to earn a spot on the podium, though. Every Naked woman that raced as a Cat 4 during the season helped earn a Team 3rd Place for Naked. Cathy Goodheart and Emily Unger (and I’m not sure why Jenny wasn’t up there, because she raced Cat 4 as well as Jr.) represented Naked on the podium. I’m looking forward to seeing all of these women race Cat 3 next year.
And finally, after many slices of pizza and many grapes and strawberries, Naked was called back up to the podium as the 1st place team in the Senior Women Cat 3 division.
Lanier Allen and I received the 1st place plaque on behalf of Naked and our other Cat 3 teammates.
As far as I can tell, it was a stellar end to an amazing season. Several people have a new mud addiction, while others continued to hone skills and aim for the hole shot.
Congratulations to all the women who raced this season—you played an important part in earning these awards. And thank you to everyone who cheered and encouraged us.
Photos 1 & 2, Jenny Lucke
Photo 3, Ryan Muncy Photography