The newest in a long line of folks trying to “simplify” the bicycle.

Look. I know that it’s been awhile. I’m not here to make promises of the triumphant return of Hodala.cx. We’ve all been through that before. I’m only here to show both of you who still check into this blog the most insane bicycle related thing I’ve seen today. Full Disclosure: I’m probably not the first person to post this. I don’t have any idea. The internet is a race and I’ve probably lost (like I do in bike races). With all of that in mind, I present:

The Bicymple.

wall2

Where to begin? It appears to be two forks, two head tubes, two stems, and two seat tubes smashed together? It swivels? It is a direct drive hub that coasts? You pedal behind you? The rider appears to be sitting directly on his nutsack and resting the remainder of his weight on his hands? Everything that can be written about this bike ends in a question mark.

I’m sure that this dude is a super nice guy because 86 people pledged him $45,000 on kickstarter. (!!!) Good luck to him.

Maybe it is just me, but I don’t need a more deathtrappy fixed gear.

 

SSCXWC ’13 Philly Photos

SSCXWC13Philly

Did you miss us? Probably not, but we’re going to try and run this thing back and get back to posting on a semi-regular basis.

Hodala’s had a pretty momentous 2013, but I couldn’t let the year end without posting something about our recent trip to Philly for SSCXWC. I’m not sure that I can even describe how much rad was gotten on our first big excursion to the East Coast. Lets do a quick rundown:

Prominent cycling magazine editors who slept on our couch – 1

Highest placing in the main race – 4th went to Brian Myers

Inches of snow fall during the race – 4

Drinks – One thousand hundred million

Gogo dancers – 1

Angry Canadians who were kicked out of their bed by that gogo dancer – 1

Number of people who nearly died in a murder basement – 1

Bars – ???

Soundtrack for the weekend – What’s Going On by the goddamn 4NonBlondes (I don’t want to talk about it)

Times that I personally got a bike stuck in a subway turnstile and had to remove my handlebars to back it out – 1

TROGDOR!!!!!’s – at least 20 (I don’t understand this either)

Midnight pizza deliveries – 3

Extended “conversations” overheard about zip ties – easily a dozen

Times Randy had his face humped by a Belgian on top of a junkyard van – 1

PantsOffDanceOff parties – 4

Cheesesteaks – Surprisingly few

Thanks – All of them. Literally all of the thanks in the world to everyone in Philly who made this happen.

A really special thanks to the establishments who hosted us. Lucy’s Hat Shop, Moshulu, and especially to Keswick Cycles. Those guys let us ship our bikes to the shop, received an order of Bern helmets for us to complete our jockey costumes, gave us two stands to build our 20 bikes, stored our cases, threw the Friday night party, and then let us box everything back up and shipped our bikes out again on Monday. We might’ve had a brief misunderstanding when the grail was unveiled on Friday night, but they are stand-up guys. Visit their shop and give them some of your money.

Oh, and Dave Pryor. God Damn I love that man for everything that he did to make last weekend happen. You sir are a Gentlemen and a Scholar.

Other people are much better photographers that we are and Hodala is currently breaking the internet with all of the coverage of us. Here are some links:

Dylan VanWeelden’s guest spot on Prollyisnotprobably

A video from Road Magazine

Abram Eric Landes Photography

I’ll be updating this post as more photo galleries show up online.

Alright, all of this reminiscing about Philly is starting to make my liver shudder. Never again. Until next year. See you in Louisville. #KyFnCx

Cheers,

 

Grail heist

I was down in Portland this past Sunday doing Portlandy things (getting an asymmetrical haircut, unlearning how to corner in the mud, etc.) when I received the following text with the caption “Look in the upper left hand corner.”

photo-57

Wait, what the fuck?!

photo-58

The grail had been spotted for the first time in 2 years! Immediately (after a couple more beers) we flew into action to formulate a plan to bring the grail back to Seattle lest it disappear again.

A quick history:

If you don’t know what the hell I’m talking about, here is a very old post about the beginnings of the grail.

Forged in the fires of someone’s garage, the Grail represents a rivalry between Seattle and Portland that has become spiritless. Apathy has replaced the sort of jovial feuding that once spread across the PNW every fall. There hasn’t been a grail race in 3 years. The last I remember the grail was won by Portland at a ‘cross race in Rainier, stolen back by Seattle, then maybe stolen again at the 2009 SSCXWC. Honestly, I barely remember how it ended up in Chris DiStefano’s hands (allegedly for only one day). And the Grail wasn’t seen until Sunday when it appeared above the bar at VeloCult.

VeloCultBannerLogo

I can’t say enough nice things about VeloCult and Sky. The shop is great, they sell Raleighs, they serve beer and coffee, and they host events for films and live music. Sky gave us a tour and showed us his amazing mountain bike collection. If I wasn’t so busy thinking about how I was going to rob him, then I would’ve taken a bunch of photos and dedicated an entire post to his shop. He was incredibly nice and knowledgeable even after I told him that I was going to be taking the Grail home with me.

After 7pm, Sky dimmed the lights and a bunch of teachers came in to watch a documentary on the pull down projection screen. This felt like our best chance at the grail. It had been placed atop their back bar – 8 feet in the air and 5-6 feet away from the barstools. To get it we needed to stand on top of the bar, step over to the cooler, jump to the ledge on the backbar, grab the Grail, jump back over the bar and get out of the shop. Which is exactly what Ken did when Sky took the rest of us downstairs to hang out in the lounge and drink our beers away from the teachers. I wasn’t there to see it, and apparently none of the teachers even blinked an eye while it was happening, but it sounds like some ninja shit to me.

After I got confirmation that the grail had left the building, Sky and I talked about the grail and how it’d ended up on top of his bar. Apparently it was in someone’s basement for the last two years and they’d given it to Sky with the condition that he not tell anywhere where he got it and only told him “This thing is a big deal.” He’d had it in his office for nearly a month and had only put it up in his shop less than 12 hours before we took it back.

There are a few clues as to where this thing has been for the last couple of years, but I’m no Hercule Poirot. It now has a Cthulhu sticker, an Evil sticker, and inside there is an empty Guldendraak bottle and a Playboy with Kim Kardashian on the cover.

There are already some early comments on facebook from Portlanders who are too cool to have fun, but we’d like to put the grail back into circulation.

photo-56

We’ll figure out a grail race this year and bring it down to Portland at least once. It’ll probably also be at all of the MFG races this year. Within the next couple of days the grail will be on display around Seattle, per the rules:

1.  No defacing of the grail.  The Grail is bigger than all of us.  Respect her.  This includes stickers, she’s not a billboard for your pathetic political causes.

2.  The Grail must be on public display during normal business hours.  Not locked away with the gimp you keep in your basement.

3.  The Grail must be present at all official Grail events held in the Northwest, no matter who is in possession.  This includes StarCrossed, Grail weekend, USGP weekend, SSCXWC, Nationals.

4.  There has been a lifetime restraining order placed on Johnny Sundt and Geoff Kabush.  Neither are allowed within 100 feet of the grail.  This also goes for their mechanics, girlfriends, boyfriends, and all Canadians.

I don’t know who wrote those rules, but I’m on board with keeping EL Gato the hell away from this thing.

C’mon, Portland – Grail de la Grunge Cup 2013. Let’s do this. In the meantime I’m going to start making up for lost time and take a bubble bath with it.

See you all at RandyCross in a couple of weeks.

 

 

Tardiness

Despite my best intentions,  printing issues, work, and overly vigorous holiday partying kept me from sorting and mailing out the arm warmers and Philly ’13 shirts last week as I’d originally planned. A few of you have emailed me asking where your items are, and I appreciate your semi-patience. We wanted for you all to be able to “rock” the Philly shirts and Wizarm warmers at the upcoming LA ‘cross race, so if you ordered before Turkey Day  I Priority Mailed the shit out of your stuff and it should be in your grubby little hands by Wednesday or Thursday. If you ordered after that then we’ll be printing another run of shirts this weekend and I’ll send them shortly after that.

This is your stuff going on a ride to work with me at 5:30 this morning.

We really appreciate all you of representing Hodala in LA this weekend, and it’d be great if you could send us some photos. Email me a big group photo and I’ll get you some stickers or something. hodalacx [at] gmail [dot] com

Don’t do anything we wouldn’t do, but feel free to have too much to drink, wear too little clothes, make complete asses of yourselves and piss off the organizers.

 

Cheers,

Ryan

A Good Day

As I got up this morning and put on my shiny new Philly shirt, Wizarm Warmers, and Bandit jersey that showed up in Monday, I thought to myself – “I wonder if Ice Cube’s ‘Good Day’ was actually on Wizard Staff Day. That would be a great transition for a blog post.” Well it turns out that it is actually on January 20th, and I seriously doubt that Cube would’ve thought that 42 degrees and not-yet-raining would constitute anything similar to a day whose breakfast didn’t include any pork products anyway. Whatever. He ruined what would’ve been a great segue so fuck him. Today is a good day and we’re quickly selling out of our small stock of Wizarm Warmers. Mediums are gone and there are only a few Small, Large, and XL left. Again, they’ll be for sale over at All Hail The Black Market within a matter of days.

And if you order a Philly shirt by the end of the weekend, they’ll ship out on Monday the 26th and be in your hands before that big ‘cross race in LA. So get on it.

We’ve gotten some orders from CA, and I just wanted to point out that these do, in fact, say “Suck it, California!” on the sleeve. I just couldn’t help myself. If this bothers you you can white that shit out or something.

Remember a few days ago when we created a Winter Wonderland at Woodland Park, turned up the Red Fang and damn near broke the knob off? Cleveland has a bunch of photos over on his Flickr site, but I think that this is my favorite.

Tyler Farrar racing through our fake snow while getting yelled at by Dirty Randy perfectly encapsulates the entire day for me. For whatever reason this season has felt pretty tame and I was starting to wonder if we were all getting too old and responsible for this shit, then all of this happened and I now see that the team was saving their energy for Woodland.

The day started off relatively uneventfully. Greg and Joe jumped into the Masters race and took 2nd and 4th respectively.

Randy still had clothes and and no one had seen the vast majority of his ass crack.

Then some dude tried to give Randy what looks like it could be a tootsie roll or little smoky (no puns intended?) and the wheels came off.

Joe wasn’t fucking around and wore his traditional Woodland Park attire on this 40 degree day.

The ladies decorated their bikes:

This spot on the course also featured a sign by some folks too lazy to yell at racers to bunny hop the barriers.

Uh huh. I’ll get right on bunny hopping those uphill barriers surrounded by roots.

Speaking of (snow) bunnies:

And Santa was having fun for awhile…

Until some Hodala Juniors got angry at him because he wasn’t the “real” Santa.

But Nat’s hair creeped them all out and they ran back to their parents.

And then YadaYadaYada everyone raced bikes and Brian won.

Unfortunately, the win wasn’t enough to put him at the top of the MFG standings for the season (He’s 2nd). The good news, though, is that his win secured Hodala’s repeat as Single Speed Cup Champions.

Soft Like Kitten placed three in the top 20 last weekend, but it wasn’t enough to get them out of the cellar and they’ll be donning bikinis for the SSCup party at Schooner Exact.

There have been some big changes for the brewery over the past month, and we’re glad they’re still letting us dirtbags take over for the party. First off, they’re now bottling a few of their beers and you can find ’em at the brewery or grocery stores around town.

They’ve also just opened a restaurant next to the tasting room, so that we no longer have any excuse to get drunk on Fridays and forget to eat dinner. The food is really good and it is a better space for the Hodala Juniors to hang out. Stop by and grab a pint if you’re in the area. They’re open both earlier and later than ever before.

With that shameless but well intentioned plug I’ll wrap this up. Tonight is the MFG season’s end party at Hale’s and Myers will be able to grab something from the prize table. I’ve got my fingers crossed that he’ll get the Mad Fiber wheelset so that he’ll get sick of them in two years and sell them to me for $300 like every other set of wheels he’s ever owned. By the way, I’ve got the over/under of Hodala folks wearing new Bandit jerseys tonight at 4 and I’m taking the over. Any takers?

Thanks to Colin Meagher for letting us use his photos. They’re the ones in this post that aren’t blurry or don’t have my finger in the way of the lens.

Cheers,
Ryan

 

 

Wizard Staff Arm Warmers

The race at Woodland Park was pretty amazing yesterday and I’ll have a more complete write-up in the next day or so, but I couldn’t wait to let both of you know that the Hodala store is finally up and ready to sell you items that you can put on your  bodies. Click the store button and help fund our next bar tab.

First up is the Wizard Staff Arm Warmers.

Wizard Staff Day has quickly become our favorite holiday, so we’ve put together some Arm Warmers to celebrate Stevil’s genius. They’ll be for sale over at All Hail the Black Market in the next day or so, but we’ve got a very limited amount of them to try and get rid of on our own. Buy ’em from us while his are still in the mail.

We’ve also printed some Hodala logo t-shirts and a brand new Hodala/Philly shirt.

We’ll basically be printing these shirts to order, but if you act now-ish we’ll do our best to get ’em to you by Dec. 1 so you’ll be able to show your support for Philly ’13 at SSCXWC.

Check back in the next couple of days for a full Woodland Park update complete with nearly nude Hodala team members, a pro roadie losing at cyclocross, and children playing in fake snow. See you then!

 

Finally some ‘cross weather.

While those of you in the Northeast are bracing for the rapidly approaching Frankenstorm, Seattle-ites are finally seeing some rain for the first time in a few months and I, for one, couldn’t be happier about it.

I mean, putting on a unicorn mask at a dusty 70 degree ‘cross race would just seem sad.

Whereas that same mask at 45 degrees and paired with Sorel winter boots is a precursor to winning your Old Guy race.

This is what winning looks like.

Jenni took 2nd in the 1-2 Women’s race and then doubled it up with a win in the SS ladies while Myers took 4 beer handups and still coasted into 2nd in the men’s SS race. All in all a good day for the Hodala crew. Head on over to MFG for more photos from the race.

Woodland Park is only a couple of weeks away and we’ll finally find out who will win the SS Cup and who will be wearing bikinis in December. Should be fun either way.

 

Here’s some photo randomness to help occupy your Tuesday morning.

Brett’s beard is becoming more epic by the day.

I don’t know how this drivetrain works, but I want one.

 

 

No comment.

 

 

All the news that ‘s fit for print I can think of.

I’d like to apologize right here up front to the three of you still reading this shoddily “curated” blog for the recent lack of content. I’ve obviously been negligent and this site is very nearly ready to move on to a younger, skinnier, “blogger” with bigger boobs. Let’s see what I can put together for you.

The ‘cross season is rapidly passing us by in the NW, and there are only 2 MFG races left on the calendar. These last two months feel like a blur of dusty, bumpy races punctuated by the occasional beer hand up. I’m admittedly terrible at this but sucking in dust every two weeks has left me feeling like a 2 pack-a-day smoker. Some of us are faring better and it looks like the men are generally putting 3 in the top 10 and 6 in the top 20 every week while the ladies have have 2 in the top 10 of the overall series despite missing a significant amount of races. Unfortunately, the revised SS Cup rules seem to be working against us at this point and in all likelihood we’ll be donning bikinis in December to wash either Stanley’s or Alki-Rubicon’s bikes. Not that we’ll mind all that much.

Here’s a little preview for you of Nat without any pants on (again).

Hot, right?

Ugh.

Craig’s angry about it.

Speaking of Craig – the USGP recently announced that they’re including an official SS competition to the national title. We crowned Craig at the SS Cup party last year, and hopefully he’ll be able to defend that title for real with more pro racers coming into the field now that there’s something on the line.

Do you remember that Rapha Gentlemen’s race that some Hodala folks raced in for Greg’s Donkelope Bicycles team? Rapha recently released the video of the ride.

You can catch them descending for about a second at the 4:10 mark and then listed in 5th place overall at the end. So there’s that.

Have you heard of the Altius cycling team out of Richmond, VA? Yeah, me neither, but there’s something eerily familiar about their new kits.

They’re obviously doing something right.

If you’re in the market for some things that we’ve made with our logo on it, keep checking back into our site. I’ve mentioned this before but we really do have some fun stuff coming up. There’s a “collabo” project with All Hail The Black Market that should “drop” in the next week or so along with some new t-shirts and possibly some of our super fly new socks.

I promise that the image of the socks that’ll be in the store won’t have my hairy legs in it. I’ll apply some digital electrolysis or something. So when the time comes just click on that fancy new STORE button at the top of the page and all of your dreams will come true (providing that you dream of things that say Hodala on them).

Whew, 500+ words – that’s all that I’ve got in me for today. We’ll most likely have some shenanigans in store for Marymoor tomorrow so swing by the trailer.

Hodala!

 

Killing it (and ourselves, apparently)

You guys want to talk about races that we’re actually attending? Me to. Let’s move on.

We’re two races into the MFG series and Hodala has taken 3 of the top 10 in both races so far. Myers has 3rd and 2nd place finishes under his belt and looks like he’ll be able to hold it down for us while Craig is away doing important things like winning the Wheelers and Dealers race at ‘Cross Vegas and then taking both days of the USGP in Sun Prarie, WI by an average of 2 minutes in the SSers.

photo from Velonews

Speaking of winners – after her stint with the Raleigh Clement squad was up this year, Jenni Gaertner opted to stick around and race with Hodala for awhile. She won the ladies SS at Kick-Off cross two weeks ago. We’re excited to have her aboard as our ladies team continues to grow.

It hasn’t quite been coming up roses for everyone over here at Hodala HQ. Saturday managed to produce upwards of 40 stitches in two of our riders and a broken/dislocated finger.

Randy was whistling through this thing after crashing on Saturday.

In addition to that a few of us were subjected to this photo after Big Finn Hill.

And this one when I asked why the hell I was receiving nudes at nearly midnight.

Our beloved Ham has also finally shat the bed. Its many issues are apparently unrepairable, but we’ll continue to drag its corpse around Weekend-at-Bernie’s-style for the rest of the season. Maybe we’ll set it on fire at Woodland Park? Dig an enormous hole and bury it? We’re open to suggestions – leave ’em in the comments. I’ll start preparing a Ken Burns-ian photo montage with “The Way They Were” playing in the background. So get ready for that.

Also get ready for some fun stuff that we’ve got coming up. We’ll have a store in the very near future with some never-before-seen items for sale.

In spite of all of this misfortune, Joe was able to pull off the rare Dirty Randy after Lake Sammamish on Sunday. Congratulations, F Joe.

Oh, our juniors squad also took its first win a couple of weeks ago when Truman “won” the competitive push bike division.

That’s all I’ve got for today. While MFG takes a week off some of us will be heading north to either Killer Cross in Bellingham or the Vancouver double header that is being put on by our buddy Matt from Mighty Cycling. See you there.

 

 

‘Cross Club – Genessee Park #2

 

Like the scoring sheet up above, last night’s ‘cross club was a fucking mess. 34 of you wonderful people ended up showing up for probably one of the longest races we’ve ever done. I believe the the final 3 ended up racing for close to 40 minutes.

Because there were so many of you and we didn’t really have time to run an A and B group, we temporarily suspended Miss ‘N Out ‘cross conditions in favor of the pull-out method, which, I’m told, works every time. I mean, ‘cross season starts in 2 weeks, you should all be able to ride your bikes for over a half hour by now. So everyone raced for as long as they felt like up until 5 laps, when we pulled the field down to our top 4 for the beer lap. Before that not a whole lot happened – some dude in a Rabobank skinsuit crashed out, Evil Jim’s shoulder is still busted as fuck and it is hard to watch him try to race one handed while holding it, Max from 333fab showed up just in time to start the first lap, and a few people had flats before the race even started. Onto the beer lap!

Craig came into the line first wielding a church key and insisted that he be allowed to start his beer before everyone else showed up, then sprayed his Rainier over everyone within 2 meters of him when trying to open it. Brian and Josh came in next and were forced to drink tall boys, but after finishing his Myers left the line with no hands on the bars and “sorrysorrysorried” his way across the field, skipping 1/4 of the course and riding up onto Craig’s wheel. Josh, seemingly took the more honest route, but an hour later it was revealed that he unabashedly cut the course on nearly every lap and didn’t even “sorrysorrysorry” to try and make up for it. In light of all of this reckless trickery, John really should have won it but instead rode his bike for about 50 meters, grabbed an armful of stakes and returned back to the finish line to drink his beer in peace. I mean… Andy even fulfilled his duties as “surrogate Kitten” and drank half of his beer lap beer for him. For shame, John. For shame.

Afterwards, Myers decrees a 4 way tie for first this week for Craig, John, Josh, and himself.

Fin.

Next week is our final race of the ‘cross club season followed by the traditional after party. As usual, there will be drinks and a few prizes. Also per usual, we’ve gotten our shit together on the last possible day and made up some ‘cross club shirts. We’ll have ’em at the race and party and they’ll be either $15 or $20 bucks. I’ve also got some of the patches left if you’ve got a denim vest that is dying for some fresh embroidery.

See you next week. You won’t want to miss out on this course.

Buy me.

#RGR #Donkelope

While re-colorizing this photo the background turned all pink. Not sure what happened here – must be some Rapha setting that I couldn’t work around.

 

Did you guys hear that the Donkelope team went down to the Rapha Gentlemen’s Race this past weekend and crushed it? They did! It sounds like the River City Cycles team finished with the best time (slow clap for them), but Donkelope finished first and won a mountain of beer. I’m assuming that Rapha will have a video and post up in a few days, but I’ve attached some of Jose’s photos to whet your whistle. Congratulations, guys. Are you bringing all of that beer to ‘cross club tonight?

Sally taking a handup like a Gentleman.

Craig kissing hands and shaking babies on his way up a climb.

I hope to see you all at the penultimate ‘cross club of the season tonight. I’ve still got a few patches and coozies if anyone missed out.

 

Shameless pandering (more ‘cross club bullshit)

Right here at the top of the post I’d like to give a “shout out” to the only company that wants anything to do with us – Rainier Beer. We’d all be thirsty except for the cases and cases of beer they kick down to us for ‘Cross Club every year, so let’s take a quick moment to enjoy some of my personal favorite Rainier beer ads.

You can’t go wrong with Our Lady Rainier.

 

Zesty!

 

The late ’80s were a pretty wacky time, amiright?

I can very nearly guarantee that no one has ever like Rainier ale. Sorry, guys.

Flash -fucking- Gordon!

 

Honorable mention goes to Barzan, which I would’ve included in this post but an extensive search (3 minutes on google) didn’t produce a decent image of it. Ah, well.

Everybody’s thirsty now? Go out and buy a 6-pack of tall boys to get you through the rest of this post. I’ll wait.

 

Alrighty then. Did you hear that Craig is officially King of the fucking World (Two time Cycle Messenger World Champion)?

Is it too late to get him a Hodala kit with World Champion stripes? Can we all be world champions by proxy a la The World Champion Hodala Bicycle Racing Team? I kinda like the sound of that. Anyway, congratulations to Craig for being fast as shit and the nicest dude that any of you have ever met. I’ll try to get him to write up a little something about the race, but we’ll see how that goes.

Enough of that. Back to ‘Cross Club nonsense.

Here are the results from the past few weeks:

Aaron punctured his beer on his canti brake in order to shotgun it. It was seriously magnificent. We’re all about innovation at ‘Cross Club. I honestly don’t even remember what the “nudity points” were all about. Maybe it had something to do with Myers taking his jersey off to reveal the sweater underneath?

 

Off leash dogs are assholes. Real talk. Maybe folks should check out the park and make sure that no one is having an illicit bike “race” before they let their fucking dog roam around off the leash and very nearly get hit by a bike. Just maybe. Still, the folks at Leschi were pretty chill and no one threatened to call the cops on us, even the owners of the Golden Retriever who almost got run the fuck over.

 

Another sufferfest at Jefferson Park. Randy’s course this week was long and bumpy with a good bit of climbing and lots of off camber. We’re starting to get into some longer races approaching 35 minutes for the winners. Myers and Joe ran away with this one. They might get tall boys of R-Ale for their beer lap next week to even the playing field. “You’re gonna like it… maybe”

 

 

The TdF as covered by Grantland

Incredibly, a mainstream sports blog (owned by ESPN, no less) has written a favorable article about the Tour de France and they only mention doping once.

Breaking News: The Tour de France is Awesome by Shane Ryan

There’s nothing groundbreaking in there but the article is worth your time if for nothing else than that it is the opposite of the guffawing from ESPN when Hoogerland was hit by a car and run into a barbed wire fence last year. Shane Ryan honestly breaks down the action from today’s stage (there are spoilers in there, btw) from the perspective of someone who can barely ride a bike and has been watching bike racing for 3 days. The added bonus is that the author isn’t trying to sell you a Pinarello or custom Parlee. I’ll take it.