Thursday, February 28, 2008

Lake Mary Criterium

Lindner Capital once again rode very well to finish with some great results on the day. Curtis and Jeff lined up to do the Masters 35+ just to gain more fitness for the upcoming events of the season. Both held their efforts to around 80%, like the day before, and were able to easily take 1st and 2nd in the field sprint finishing in 2nd and 3rd place overall. They then got ready for the Pro 1,2 race (Curtis' 4th of the weekend!).

Ryan "Strongman" Saylor sent in the following report:

"The Lake Mary Crit was blessed with better weather with mostly sunny skies. The fairer weather brought many more racers to the start of the pro/1/2 race with close to twice as many riders as the previous day. Among the extra riders were Jeff Kopp, Clint Bridier and Andy Mills who joined Curtis Long, Karel Sumbal and Ryan Saylor to represent Lindner Capital. The 3 corner course had wide turns and was laden with attack after attack, none of which could stay away for very long. Lindner Capital raced well throughout the race being present in almost every break away of the day. Moreover, the break away presence by Lindner Capital was spread amongst ALL of its riders, not just a select few. Unfortunately, some of Karel Sumbal's bad luck from last weekend resurfaced as a rider in front of him knocked over a cone and cause him to crash hard landing on his head. Fortunately, he was able to regain his composure enough to rejoin the group after taking a free lap. The most significant break happened with 20 minutes plus 5 laps to go in the race. Seven riders slipped off the front with representation by one Herbalife rider and TWO Lindner Capital riders (Long and Saylor), Shane Braley (Wheel N Sprocket), Todd Sanders (Toshiba/Santo), Bobby Sweeting (Aerospace Engineering Group) and another rider. The group worked together erratically and while they remained clear of the bunch, they never gained a substantial gap on the field. Reportedly, Florida strong man Joel Chavez (Preferred Alliance) chased for lap after lap in attempt to bring back the 7 man break. After 20 minutes off the front, the breakaway was struggling to keep cohesion. Sweeting attacked the break hard but could not shake Saylor, the Herbalife rider and Braley. The four worked furiously together in the closing laps but were swept up on the last lap by the hard chasing group. Going into the last turn, Jeff Kopp attacked for a long sprint from 400 meters out and was only passed by four riders with Eduardo Colon, Rudy Robaina (Herbalife) and Horace McFarlane respectively filling out the podium."

-Ryan Saylor

Sanford Lakefront Criterium

Once again Lindner Capital had a successful day. Before the Pro 1,2 race, Curtis decided to do the Masters 35+ race for extra fitness. Racing at about 80% effort he was able to snag second place between two Herbalife book ends. About an hour later he lined up for the Pro 1,2.

Ryan "Strongman" Saylor, our race correspondent, has sent in this report of the action:

"The Sanford Criterium was a soggy race and was not well attended by many of the usual suspects. The most obvious absent racers were those from the south Florida area. Nonetheless, twenty-eight brave souls lined up for 70 minutes of slogging it out on a six turn course riddled with brick roads and painted corners. The two biggest teams in the race were Herbalife Racing Team and Texas Roadhouse. Herbalife had 6-8 riders while Texas Roadhouse had at least 4 or 5. Lindner Capital was represented by Karel Sumbal, Curtis Long and Ryan Saylor. Karel rode pretty well surfing the front of the group for most of the race while Long struggled to find a rhythm. Saylor's corning skills proved to be lacking on the wet course as he struggled to keep pace through the turns. Zach Morris, who took 2nd in the Gainesville crit, and Allison Anjos (both of Herbalife) riders slipped away without enough reaction from the field and that was the last the group saw of them. Karel, despite missing the break, continued to ride smartly near the front. With 5 minutes and 5 laps to go, Mike Niemi (Metro Volkswagon), current US Junior National Time Trial Champion, attacked the group in an attempt to go for 3rd place without the danger of the closing lap craziness of a bunch sprint. Grant Potter (Herbalife), a time trialist himself, would have no part of it and brought him back with 5 laps left in the race. Saylor, who somehow found his way to the front, immediately attacked in another attempt at the final podium spot. Three laps later, Saylor was joined by Bobby Sweeting (Aerospace Engineering Group). However, the duo was caught with one lap left in the contest. The bunch sprint was won by Chad Burdzilauskas (Texas Roadhouse) followed by Rudy Robaina (Herbalife) who were teammates in 2007 on the now defunct CycleScience Racing Team. Sprinter Frank Lopez got the best of Lindner Capital's Karel Sumbal who took a respectable 6th place."

-Ryan Saylor

Monday, February 18, 2008

Race for Humanity Criterium

Here's a wrap up of the Dade Race for Humanity Criterium last Sunday...thanks again to Ryan for the race report:

"Sunday's Humanity Crit saw only Victor Rodriguez, Karel Sumbal and Ryan Saylor for Lindner Capital. With another large field starting the crit and many racers looking for revenge for Saturday's battle of endurance, the race strung out to single file from the gun. Victor and Karel rode smart from the onset and stayed in the front half of the field seemingly out of trouble. Saylor started near the back and quickly found himself near the rear of a field that was breaking up in several places. Within 15 minutes of starting the race, Saylor was off the back in a small group of discouraged riders who watched the field disappear in the distance around the many turns of the tight course. The field saw many attacks and threatening breakaways, but it wasn't until Ivan Franco escaped with John Durango (both of Toshiba/Santo) that a break actually stuck. Franco and Durango were flying through the turns and increased their lead over the field every lap. Not long thereafter, the break awa y duo lapped the sad group of about eight dropped riders (containing Saylor) who refused to forfiet thier entry fees. Franco and Durango blasted past the dropped riders without concern while the struggling group could not miss the fast wheels that just passed them and latched onto the two blazing teammates. It soon became clear that their misfortune was turning around as the Toshiba/Santo riders were pulling the dropped riders back into contention. Seth Hansley (Locos) and Saylor were the only riders able to keep pace with the breakaway and were delighted to find themselves back in the peloton and in contention for 3rd place. Several more laps ticked off and Saylor was able to join Rodriguez near the front of the group. Unfortunately, a tough race took it's toll on tired riders and one of several crashes took down Lindner Capital's sprinter Karel Sumbal who suffered a broken fork in the collision. Suprisingly, Saylor managed to hold onto 13th place (one spot out of the prize m
oney) with Rodriguez close behind. After this weekend, Karel's luck can only get better and we'll look for him to place well in Orlando next weekend!"

Ryan Saylor

San Antonio Road Race

Ryan Saylor for the second weekend in a row made the winning break to finish 8th place in the hilly San Antonio Road Race. He sent in this report from Saturday:

"San Antonio proved again to be a brutal venue for the 2008 edition of the Race for Humanity. While eighty five miles isn't the longest road race around, add in some long central Florida hills and the miles take their toll. The weather couldn't be much nicer to the racers with blue skies and a high around 80 degrees. Lindner Capital was represented by Jeff Kopp, Curtis Long, Victor Rodriguez, Karel Sumbal, Clint Bridier and Ryan Saylor. With over one hundred racers starting the pro/1/2 race, the large field started relatively slow with the group pedaling with nervous trepidation. Soon however, the attacks starting flying and Phil Gaimon slipped away with a handful of riders which did not include any of the normal Florida big names. They did however gain about a minute and a half on the field who did not seem overly concerned with the move. Phil Gaimon unfortunately got a flat tire and was forced to wait for the wheel truck which trailed the field. This seemed doom for the break away, but rumor had it that Frank Trevieso, now with Toshiba/Santo, bridged across to the break and replaced Gaimon with a different set of worthy legs. Not too surprisingly, after changing his wheel Gaimon caught back up to the field. After some relentless work from Gaimon combined with sporadic attacks from the field the break was eventually brought back about 50 miles into the race. More attacks followed from Winston David (Aerospace Engineering) and Gaimon until the rubber band broke again--this time with Gaimon, David and Allison Anjos (Herbal Life). The trio quickly gained over a minute lead before Daniel Larson (CycleScience) attacked the field with a Preferred Alliance rider in tow. The two also gained a lead on the field and seemed to be on their way to bridge to the leading trio. Ryan Saylor ( Lindner Capital), jumped out of the field with yet another Preferred Alliance rider and after some leg breaking work tagged onto Larson and the Preferred Alliance rider. Larson, Saylor and the two Preferred Alliance riders worked together, but didn't seem to gain on the lead trio. After 10 miles of suffering, the four chasers were caught by yet another group of chasers containing many of the usual Florida big names (Joel Chavez, Ivan Franco, Ricardo Hernandez, John Durango, Rudy Robaina and more). The chase group then swelled to as many as a dozen riders or so. However, the group's unforgiving pace left five riders heading back towards the peleton while Saylor found himself unfittingly among what seemed to be a Spanish armada of strong men. Outgunned, Saylor sat on the back of a blistering fast group until the lead trio was run down with only a few miles left in the contest. Broken, Allison Anjos and Winston David could n ot withstand the final attacks from the anxious favorites and rolled in just behind the lead group. John Durango outsprinted defending state road race champion Joel Chavez for the win. Rafeal Meran rounded out the podium. Ricardo Hernandez took fourth. Phil Gaimon, not known for his sprinting, managed to come away with fifth followed by Ivan Franco in sixth. Ryan Saylor hung on for 8th place. After some unfortunate mishaps, Kopp, Long, Rodriguez, Sumbal and Bridier rolled in strong amongst a peloton which left over half the starters as casualties."

Ryan Saylor

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Pictures from the UF criterium

Thanks to Jim Wright from the Jacksonville Racing Club for these pictures!

Ryan covering Joel Chavez

Ryan making the jump to the winning break

Me in an early break with Phil Gaimon...some guy sitting on in pink, and then an Herbalife rider bridged up...but, it all came to nothing

Me looking back for some help as Joel attacks

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Shawn Burke - Velocity Multisport Coaching

Speaking of sponsors...I have to tell you about another one of our sponsors, Shawn Burke. Shawn and his associates (Rich McLaughlin, Susan Wallis) at Velocity Multisport set up training plans for our team and is one of our new sponsors this year. Everyone knows, or should know, that the single best thing you can do to help you reach your potential in any sport is to get a coach.

Velocity Multisport has a wealth of knowledge in triathlons, swimming, running and cycling. They're able to plan an athlete's season using data from heart rate monitoring history...or more accurately, watts. I found the following short clip about Shawn on the internet and just wanted to share it.

Shawn Burke - Athlete Spotlight a short movie!

Thanks to Velocity Multisport for all their help and support for the coming year.

University of Florida race weekend

Today was an 8 mile time trial...about 4 miles out and back with a few small rolling hills. There was a tailwind on the way out, and a headwind on the way back.

Since this race is organized by UF students, there are always delays. The first wave of riders started an 1 hour to 1 1/2 hours behind schedule. I'm not going to complain because I'm happy that they are taking the initiative to keep this race going. I know it's a thankless job, and we all appreciate the opportunity to have another race on the schedule.

The results are posted, but they are still incomplete. Curtis had a great race and was the top finisher for our team in 9th place. I snuck in ahead of Jeff for the next spot, and the "Koppster" continued to show his TT prowess one place back. So, we ended up in 9th, 10th, and 11th. Two top 10's...not bad.

The Koppster giving lessons on proper TT warmup and form...

This was the downtown Gainesville criterium course that has a bumpy brick section all the way from corner 1, through corner 2, and about 25-50 yards on the back stretch. As an added bonus, right before the 3rd corner there was some construction in the road which had been filled in with limestone...nice.

The way the course was setup, it made it somewhat difficult to get away. There were many attempts before a group of 4 leapt off the front and included one of our newest team members, and Gainesville resident...Ryan Saylor. This was a good move and we were happy with Ryan representing Lindner Capital for a possible win. Unfortunately, a group of 3 bridged up to Ryan...and the rest of us missed it. Having only one person in the break of 7 wasn't great odds. The breakaway had a lot of horsepower and gained a gap very quickly. We covered the rest of the attempts to latch onto the break...but none of those came close.

Ryan rode a great race and was 5th, an excellent effort for one of our "non sprinters". It was great to see Ryan place in his hometown race, and we were all happy for him.

Our first tier goal is to put someone in the top 5, and we accomplished that level. The whole team rode great and worked together as a cohesive unit. Only good things can come from working together...and they will.

Chris Lieto...and

So...Jeff Kopp tells us that he has this buddy of his from high school who is a pretty good triathlete, and he's going to have him come in and speak at the Trek Store. Turns out, it's one of our sponsors...and 4 time Ironman Champion...Chris Lieto! I'm not sure what they've put in the drinking water around Jeff's high school, but I want seems that most of Jeff's old buddies have turned Pro in some sport.

Now Jeff tells me that we need to help Chris find a place to do a little training while he's here. Hmmm, well cycling we have covered (Jeff took care of that)...running, he's on his a place to swim. Danny "Aquaman" Domingo volunteered to take him to the YMCA at Ponte Vedra. Danny does a great job putting me in the hurt box every time we dip a toe in the water, so it was nice to see him get some of his own medicine for once. Below is Danny's brief report after I asked him if he showed Chris who was boss:

"NO HE SHOWED ME.. nice fellow - tell Jeff thanks a bunch.. nice to swim with the guy who led Hawaii till mile 16 on the run. It was a hard swim – i need some fitness - 18x100s as follows:

5x 100s on 1:20 – holding 9-10s – swim
5x100s on 1:15 holding 7s - Chris was 5s -swim
5x100s on 1:20 had to take a 50 break – and put on paddles to keep up- 1:10s
3x100s swim on 1:15 – 6-7s Chris was 5s. swim

We were gonna do 20 but the pool was closing. . He is fit..."

Later that day Chris went at the Trek Store to give a presentation. A lot of athletes, especially those who are world class like Chris, talk about their results and how they've done in their races...but, he spoke about how to set and accomplish goals. It was more of a motivational speech that was highly entertaining, informative, and got the whole crowd involved. When it was over he hung out and answered questions and posed for pictures with anyone who wanted them. Not only an incredible athlete, but a great speaker and very personable guy. Everyone really enjoyed themselves.

He's also spent a lot of time developing a nutritional line that should be coming out this month. It's part of a venture called Base Performance Nutrition, and will have products to be used before, during, and after a race for recovery...keep an eye out for those products in both of Jeff's stores soon.

Jeff introducing Chris Lieto

Chris Lieto asking for another Salmon wrap from Native Sun

Setting goals and how to achieve them

Chris and Jeff...two Pro multisport athletes, between the two of them they have running, cycling, swimming, triathlons, water polo, football, and bull riding covered...did I miss anything??

Me telling Chris his days of having the fastest bike split in triathlons are numbered...he looks worried!

Here's another account of Lieto's presentation.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Battle of Olustee Training Race

Due to illness and other engagements, Lindner Capital was absent from the famous Battle of Olustee training race in Gainesville, FL. This is a great ride, and am sorry to have missed it this year.

Although, we have this amusing report written by Phil Gaimon:

"On a hot Sunday afternoon somewhere near the Georgia border, an epic battle was brewing. The 75-strong field was pumped, fueled from a 45 minute store stop, and itching for intensity after Dan Larson decided to let a team of prematurely-attacking (and kinda creepy) recumbents just ride away from the group. We turned a corner and began to head back south. Eying a hill in the distance, I looked to Kerry Duggan for a sign.

“Can I go?” I asked.

Kerry replied with a simple gesture, pointing his finger in the air, and firing to start the festivities. I shot off as hard as I could, and the field hesitated behind. They were motivated when they figured out that it was on for real this time, and I wasn’t sure where the next turn was, so I came back pretty quickly, only to be countered by Jim Wright and his tandem partner, cruising along at 35 mph in their national champion jerseys. The field had learned how dangerous they were last year, so the rotation was quick to organize, and a small group bridged, soon followed by the rest of the field.

Attacks went back and forth for the rest of the day, as the aggressive group and the tandem factor eliminated any need for an organized rotation. Most of the attacks contained some combination of myself, David Gutt, Gary Yates, a GCC guy named Andreas, Big Phil, Little Mike Niemi, Chris J, Rudy Robaina, and the tandem (which may or may not have contained a motor). The group thinned on some of the hills, but as 15 active riders ripped each others’ legs off, most of the field was able to sit in and save energy for the sprint.

Big Phil was dangling off the front as we turned onto Millhopper. His well-timed move was countered by Jim Wright, who has been informed that it’s dick to bring a tandem on a group ride, but he’s old so he’ll probably forget by next year. As out-of-towners mumbled to each other asking where the sprint was, I took advantage of the twisty roads and confusion and tried to sneak away. I had a solid gap and good legs, but it was not to be, as the resilient Gary Yates dragged Rudy Robaina up to me with 1 k to go. With the remaining group of about 40 riders breathing down our necks, they refused to work, which made me wonder why they had bothered to come across at all. I tried to explain it to them, but they insisted on saving every last bit of energy for the sprint ahead, although I was welcome to drag them to the line if I was so inclined. It was a wise choice on their part, as I blew up and got a great view of the sprint, rocketing backwards through the field as if I had pulled a parachute.

Gary led out the sprint, and it appeared that Rudy had victory in the bag until David Guttenplan unleashed the powerful sprint that he pulls out of his ass whenever he needs it (if he can find it among all the furniture in there). Inches from oncoming traffic, David was gaining fast. Tragically, the hometown hero had found the hole too late, and ran out of road, leaving Rudy Robaina with the final glory, as Dan Larson claimed the final podium spot. The 115 miles was completed in about 4 hours and 45 minutes."

Lindner Capital takes 3rd and 4th

Curtis and Jeff returned Saturday evening from the Space Coast Time Trial with Lindner Capital's first podium placing of the year. Jeff was 3rd and Curtis was 4th in the opening race of the year, and the first time trial.

Great job in St. Cloud, Florida and an excellent way to begin the season!