Is This A Logo??

Is This A Logo??

Wednesday, 28 February 2018

TilsonburnAlternate - An Update of Sorts

So, the last couple of 'Riot' rides I have serupticiously been plotting possible routes for the Alternate Tilsonburn.  Alternate Tilsonburn??  What am I talking about??  Catch the details HERE (a previous post of mine).

So....I am hoping to have a 50km option, and 100km option, and a 160km option.  All three options should include gravel, rail trail, doubletrack, and single track...pieced together by sections of road.  A fatbike, a mountain bike, a cyclocross bike, or gravel bike should all suffice...pick your own steed of choice.

If you think you are tough enough to do the 160, you probably are.  Although you are likely not as tough as this guy...

Seriously....this guy (AdamKingOfTheHill)...decided, "Hey, let's go south and solo a 24 hr race.  I'm not in mid season race shape, so let's just do it for a fun trip".  So Adam and his wife Heather headed to Pueblo to have a fun trip....and solo the 24 hours of old pueblo.  Oh...and out of shape so he just came in 2nd overall.  WTF??  Ya...out of shape.  Way to go Adam!!  Officially tougher than this guy, even!!

 a little off track there; never happens...

So...the AltTilsonburn.  Good Friday.  Tentative plans:  160km option to start at 7am, the 50 and 100km options to start at 9am.  Plan is to be more of a group style ride....and the 160 and 100km options can hopefully include a midway stop at a bakery for refuelling/rewatering.....and...wait for it.  A Buttertart!!!  Planning to stop at 97 General store near Valens Conservation area for said sweet treat.

But the best part of the Tilsonburn is everyone who participates, thinks about participating, or hears about it, or saw a bike once is invited to contribute to FreedomBike.  FreedomBike is the creation of Wardy (who is the progenitor of the Tilsonburn, unable to make it happen this year due to family illness)...seriously if you have not checked out my original post you may be missing the most important info...

FreedomBike...Wardy's operation that provides a bike to a young person involved with Big Brothers/Big Sisters.  You are able to contribute by sending an e-transfer to, to help a deserving young person experience the joy of the sport/activity we all love!

Well, usually love....the last bit of that 160km may be a bit more of a love/hate thing.  So best start training if you haven't been.  But not like my mom...she started walking every day when she turned 60.  She will be 80 this year and we have no idea where she is... e-transfer to to contribute to FreedomBike.  And come and ride...more details will follow as I figure them out. it's supposed to be +13 or better today....February.  So...Ima gonna get out for a ride.  Maiden voyage for a new steed.  Kona Ti Esatto...

Custom build by the talented BicycleWorksPaul...of BicycleWorks bike shop in Waterdown.  (Hence the name BicycleWorksPaul...ya...I'm so creative like that...). Nice work Paul!!

Anyways...let's go ride!!
Cya out there??

Stay posted!!

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Long Weekend = Two Riot rides

So...yeah...after posting the last post I took a bit of flak demanding that I get back to regular posting...(thanks mom!).

Anyways....a long weekend this past weekend...meant an opportunity for two riot rides, one Sunday, one holiday Monday.

But first was Saturday...the BicycleWorks morning group ride (every Saturday at 8am).  This is an expert level group ride...which means this ride is always a challenge for me.  I am fit enough to keep up...mostly; but these folks are very experienced skilled technical riders, and compared to them my skills are mediocre.  So I often get dropped on the more technical trails...which there are plenty of here.  The group often gets a kick out of the fact that I call the trails they choose 'the murder trails'....cuz that's what they do to me.  If you want to challenge yourself to get better....this is the ride to join...if you dare.

Then Sunday, was the riot ride (yeah, I know, modestly named after myself...sorry.).  A very talented group showed up to make the day...Oggie, NewfieSteve, Jonathan, Giant, PowerPaul...and not so little (I am a tad above my ideal fighting weight) old me.  So we headed into the Waterdown/Rockcliffe trails...looking for the technical, climby trails to help me even things out and allow me to keep up to this group while giving them a challenge.  Plus....trails were either icy...or soft a great workout; 3+ hours and almost 700m of climbing.  Often quietly urged by Giant to continue to make the ride as long and challenging as possible.  Giant is machine...determined, tough, stubborn, and sports a true love for mountain biking.  And rumour was....we actually had Oggie complaining about the difficulty.

Kinda  like this guy...

Actually, I think this guy has the Oggie look down pat...

Haha....sorry Oggie...

OK some real pics...

Actually, Oggie is as tough as they come (almost as tough as Giant!), and he is always never know if he is kidding or serious.  So...a little afraid, and unsure of my safety I just continued on...until Mother Nature (the real tough one!) made the decision.  The warming temps had the trails getting soft enough it was time to head back before we did damage to the trails.  Unfortunately cutting the ride a little shorter than I planned, and missing a fun, very challenging finishing loop.  Ah well, a challenge left for the next ride!!

Then, the post ride Lois feast (yeah, I know, modestly named after Lois...sorry.).  And post ride social gathering...where we reviewed the ride, Jonathan schooled us on motor vehicle engine details, and Oggie regaled us with very pertinent tales of Olympic bobsledding.  All in all...another awesome ride.

With another one planned for the holiday Monday.

This time a road/gravel ride.  Road because the trails were mushy.  However, it was only +2 degrees...and rain was in the forecast.  Every one bailed...either because of family day commitments...or the weather.  Except Jonathan.  Jonathan convinced me we had to go.  We had to get into road shape for the Good Friday planned Riot ride to support the Tilsonburn and Freedom Bike.  Plus I really need the road rides to help me drop some weight...I am a tad (a lot) heavier than I should be (I feel your pain TeamColin!!)...and the road rides have always been an effective way for me to burn off the excess calories.

Yup....those could be me...but I'm workin' on it. we went.

And as the ride gods would have started to rain just as we pulled away to start the ride.  Well if we were going to go in this weather I figured we had better make it worthy.  No little 50km ride.  So...cold and rainy at around the 60km mark Jonathan started to look pretty rough.  So we stopped at 97 General Store to refuel and rewater.

So, I figured we should make our way back home.  Turned out to be an 80km ride.  And Lois had home made hot red lentil soup waiting for us at home.  'Twas a good initial prep (of many needed!) for 'Tilsonburn'.

If you are not sure what Tilsonburn is....check out my previous post here for details.  It's an epically epic early season ride in support of a truly worthy cause but the previous post if you are not familiar.  I will be hosting a Riot ride on Good Friday...hopefully worthy of the help support FreedomBike and provide a bike for a deserving young person.

Perhaps you can make it out??  Do you dare??

Stay posted!

Friday, 16 February 2018

Sorry....But I am Back...for Freedom

So, yeah, my blog posts have been on a bit of a hiatus (not the hernia). Just took a bit of a break...I haven't competed in any events to report on.  Been spending the winter just enjoying riding, and trying to get in as much base training as possible.

So I expected that when I got back to paying attention to this blog thing, I would extol on how much I was enjoying winter riding (I am not a fan of 'riding' a trainer indoors), how much I love my fatbike, or what I was doing regarding winter training.  Or maybe, I would discuss some of the races coming up in 2018 that I was contemplating, or....any number of things.  

But then this happened...

The 5th annual Tilsonburn.

If you are not familiar, the Tilsonburn ,only 4 years old, has become an icon in Ontario's cycling world.  Held in the spring (every Good Friday) out of Tilsonburg, Ontario; 160 kms (there are 50 km, and 100 km options as well) of predominantly gravel and a few kms of super-fun, tough singletrack.

Self supported, well semi-supported...there is a firepit stop with bananas and electrolytes (donated by a local grocer) a few kms from the finish...just close enough to make you wonder if you should stop.  Oh...and it's not a race. got's not a's a ride...just a ride.  Well, we all give it our all....vying for 'bragging' rights (apparently those are important things...aren't they??)...but there are no recognitions of finish medals or trophies.  Just a get, beverages, and stories.  The awesome food available at the start/finish at the Indigo Lounge.  (Even for those of us who don't eat meat products!)

Cool video link of the even here.

But even better....there is no entry fee! entry fee...just sign up and go!!  Really....NO FEE...all run by volunteers.

All of this lead by one WardyM.Petunia (his nickname is JeffW...)...and of course a few very dedicated helpers.  Wardy started this event 5 years ago...out of a love of the sport, and the desire to share gravel/trail available in his community....and the opportunity to give back.

The giving back...the best part.  All participants are given the opportunity to contribute to FreedomBike.  (No, contribution is not a condition of racing...there is a discreet contribution box that is available to drop in a contribution post-ride).  FreedomBike provides a bicycle to a deserving young person associated with BigBrothers/BigSisters.

At first Wardy hoped that a couple of hundred dollars might be contributed...and that he could top up the fund to provide a bike for a young person who might appreciate a bike they might not have the opportunity to have.  Well Wardy might have underestimated the generosity of his friends and fellow cyclists.  FreedomBike has been able to provide bikes for more than one deserving young person...I think that last year three very appreciative teens received bikes!!

Anyways...I was greatly looking forward to participating again in 2018...March 30th.  I mean...who can turn down 160 kms of gravel??  A couple thousand metres of climbing??  Challenging single track thrown in just for fun??  Nice and early in the season...a test of how winter training has been going...(it's usually rather humbling...).

But...alas...not to be.  Very sadly, a family illness has forced Wardy to cancel the event for 2018.  We all wish the best to Wardy, and his family.  And while a serious family illness takes precedence (should go without saying...) over the event and makes it insignificant that we miss out on a fun time, but perhaps there is something that we can do to help Wardy maintain the FreedomBike legacy and contribute to another young person (or two, or three???) to experience the joy of our sport??

Here is what I propose...

If you pay any attention to the RiotOnRacing Facebook page, or my Strava, (OK, I stick to the belief that there are at least a couple of you out there...), then you may be aware that through the winter Lois and I have hosted a 'Riot' ride every Sunday.  It has usually been a fatbike ride, but there have been a couple of days where skinnier tires worked...and even one road-ish ride!!  They are all on our local trails (except for the road one)...there are so many trail options in our area.  And they are all endurance type rides...some might even say epic;  3-5 hours...500 - 1000 metres of climbing...sometimes flowy trails...some times steep punchy climbs...some roots, some rocks.  As I say, we have so many options, locally.  Small side note:  To date there has yet to be a 'Riot' ride where there has not been someone requesting that we be done before the ride is over.). 

And they all finish with Lois serving some type of warm, filling, delicious nutrition and beverages (cuz rehydration is important...).  Some may argue that this social bit is the best part of the ride. proposal.  This year...on Good Friday, to celebrate the Tilsonburn, we will hold a 'Riot' ride...160-200 kms (we will also have a shorter option or options), of as much gravel, rail trail, and some trail, as we can piece together with sections of road.  There may even be a stop or two for buttertarts...

Likely will be an 8am start...but details will follow...

But, the best part...the Freedom bit.  Let's do our part to help a young person earn a bike, to experience the joy of the sport.  Anyone participating will have the opportunity to contribute to FreedomBike with a bank e-transfer to    (Make the security question: What is the cause?  And the answer: FreedomBike2018 )  

The amount of the contribution is up to you (and will only be known by you and Wardy)...any and all contributions will be very specially appreciated.  In fact, you don't even have to participate to contribute...if you think about riding in this 'Riot' ride, if you do your own ride..or not, if you have seen a bike, if you have ever seen the word 'riot' can still contribute.  Let's see what we can do to support Wardy's efforts and provide a bike for another young person who might not otherwise have the chance to enjoy the sport we love.

And then....let's ride...

Stay posted...

Let's Do It!!!