Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Jon and I took a short trail ride today. Jon just started riding trails this year. He rides them on his LHT or on an RB-T. Both road-shaped bikes.

In the last 6 months or so since I've started riding with Jon, I've seen his technical ability improve 1000-fold. I've also seen him fall over and wreck a lot.

When it comes to becoming a better rider for trail-dirt technical riding, I think some wrecks are a sign that you are improving. Or will improve. Because you tend to wreck when you are pushing your personal boundaries. That's just a theory. And I don't necessarily think the inverse is true: if you don't wreck, it doesn't mean you're not improving.

I wreck all the time, so this theory suits me.

But the worse wrecks I've seen have been following the best technical riders that I ride with.

Specifically: I watched Ben Tobin explode over his bars and wreck a couple years ago. He puked, then beat his wheel back into a true-enough state. I've only been riding with Glen for about 3 years. But I've watched him wreck at least 3 times. In each one, I was amazed that he popped right back up and kept going. These guys are always pushing themselves and don't back down from tricky spots.

So after Jon and I finished climbing the HD trails, where he fell over once or twice, I laid this theory on him. I probably carried on more than I needed to, as I am wont to do.

On our way home, as I attempted a bunny hop, I wrecked. (Didn't knock my head!) Jon was right on my back wheel. He said it looked like I was banking into a turn when I attempted the bunny hop. That's not a good practice. I'm not sure what the hell I was doing.

Anyway, he's right on my wheel and in one-half of one-half of one second he has to decide: bail and hurt himself, run me over, or run my bike over. Of course he rolled over my bike. I rolled -- taking a bit of skin off my knee and testing the durability of the back of my new Ibex fancy jacket (which held up like a champ, of course).

The only damage was a bent derailleur hanger on my new Legolas. No big whoop. I should get a punch card from Glen for fixing bent derailleur hangers. Fix 10 -- 11th one free kind of thing.

Well, there's also a bit of scraped-up'ed-ness on my super fancy XTR derailleur. ouch. That won't buff out. Next time, just run me over Jon. They don't make XTR's like that anymore.


Pondero said...

Great story. Well told. Heal fast.

Jonathan Eberly said...

Next time I'll just bunny hop you and the bike and ride away feeling totally bad ass.

rory said...

at least your not on blood thinners?

alex wetmore said...

I've got a spare of that derailleur for you. I don't own enough derailleur'd bicycles (or maybe I own too many Alfine and Rohloff hubs) to be stock piling XTR.

Traditional Bike Club Curmudgeon said...

So, that constitutes taking it easy on the old blood clot?