Saturday, January 12, 2008

Oh What a Day... and Back in the Day...

Huge thanks to Matt and the Chicken Ranch gang for organizing a perfect ride today in the Santa Ynez Valley. Gawd those roads are beautiful for bike riding! And for once, at least in my experience, the day didn't turn into a race. Perhaps that's because even us local-yokel knuckleheads aren't goofy enough to half-wheel the ride's guest big-timers Aaron Olson, Kim Anderson, and Laura Van Gilder. Well, except for Jason ...but bless his heart if he can't help himself!

So we did the usual "Canyons Loop", i.e., Foxen Canyon-Cat Canyon-Drum Canyon, and then tacked on a lap of the Amgen Tour of California time trial loop. In total, a steady 75 miles that went by effortlessly because of the beautiful scenery and great company. Greg and Matt have a report and some pictures posted over at the B Team blog.

On the way back into Solvang, I mentioned to Gabe that years ago (decades really) there was an annual crit in Solvang. That got me reminiscing, so when back home I dug through my old boxes of Velo News looking for an issue that might have coverage of that race. And guess what... I found an issue from 1978 with coverage of the Solvang crit and the Santa Ynez RR (which used the roads between Los Olivos and Solvang). And guess what else?!? Rory won the crit, and Greg LeMond won the RR. Click on the scanned-in image of the article below if you want to read some history. A few other familiar names in the results too!

9 comments:

ADM said...

I got a laugh from seeing Thurlow Rogers listed in the results for juniors. I guess even Thurlow was a junior once, too.

Greg Knowles said...

Pretty cool history lesson. Thanks Mark

Anonymous said...

Yea, yea. I know. Forever the dumbass. It's just that I feel so fast when everyone else wants to go slow. Sure enough in a few months I'll be gasping mid-pack when everyone else decides to go fast too.

Very cool newspaper article. Thanks for putting that out here. I heard there used to be a crit up here, but didn't know about the RR.

Jason

Marco Fanelli said...

adm- Yep, he was a very good junior... one of the best in the country at a time when there were a ton of great juniors.

Greg- Glad our teams get along so well! It was really fun to do that ride.

Jason- You are going great right now and there's nothing wrong with riding hard. I was just teasing you! Those that want to go slower just need the discipline to resist getting caught up in it. Group rides are great for everyone to get what they want out of it.

Mark Luke said...

We did have a little run in with one of the locals. As I was pulling into town an older lady asked me "Why are you here, I thought you were coming in February?" Wasn't really sure what she was talking about. As Mondo and I were loading up she came by the car and asked the same question. We then realized she had mistaken us for professional bike racers from the Tour of California. Our glory was soon tarnished as she launched into a tirade against the Tour, bikers in general and Amgen. She said if the Tour closed down the town again they would file a class action law suit to shut it down. She also told us all bikers are hated in Solvang and she hated Amgen for ripping her off on her drugs. We didn't know what to say and just went along with her. After she was done another lady approached and I thought, "here we go again." I was stretching and she asked me if I hurt my leg. Mondo told her we were just old. She said "I'm 80 years old. Can you open this sweet?" She handed a mint to Mondo who opened it and gave it back to her. She said "thank you, have a nice day" and continued across the street. Guess they don't all hate us there.

Mark

Marco Fanelli said...

Good story Mr. Be-Lukie! I know a guy who owns a fudge shop right in downtown Solvang and he said all the merchants hate bike races. Poor Hecky really had to deal with that when he was trying to resurrect the Solvang Crit. Thing is, seems to me they are short-sighted because so many people come to town for the bike race(s) and enjoy Solvang and hopefully later come back as tourists. Then they spend money. So sure, the merchants lose a bit on race day, but the event show-cases their town and pays dividends in the future. Or something like that...

TnA said...

Hmmm...I recall dropping a bit of money in a little restaurant after that last Solvang crit. Bought a nice "brunch" for the whole family. It seems to me there were a whole BUNCH of racers doing the exact same thing. All the restaurants were packed.

Oh well...I sometimes wonder about business owners at times. It's the same mentality that has all the SB State Street businesses thinking they just HAVE to have car traffic past the front of their businesses...even though there's no parking. Go figure. IMO, State should be shut down to just buses and bikes, with car traffic only allowed to cross. Just like the fair city of Madison, WI :-)

So yeah...I guess Solvang prefers to have all the drunken "Sideways" tourists instead (rolleyes).

steve said...

Jason will tell you that he moved to Los Olivos by choice. Turns out that Solvangers don't hate bike racers, they just hate Jason. Sure enough, they ran him out of town.
They treat me with nothing but respect -- or at least as much respect as the folks who rent those stupid surry bikes. And when it comes to bike racing and cycling in general, aren't all people shortsighted?

Anonymous said...

It's actually just a case of disappointment. The Danes were all looking for Rasmussen when they heard The Chicken was coming to the Valley. We should have just thrown a polka dot jersey on Steve.

Me