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.

 

Cross Club – Genessee and Jefferson Parks

Cross Club is in full swing and we’ve all got a couple of races under our proverbial belts. Brian Myers is dominating with two wins so far. His Dirtbag Biathlon skills of drinking beer and ‘cross riding have been on display as he was able to beat Craig off the line during the beer lap at Genessee Park and made up a nearly 1 minute disadvantage at Jefferson Park after John used the little known pour-the-beer-all-over-your-fucking-head method of getting to the bottom of his can and off to a head start last night.

Start saving your pennies because we’ll have some stuff to sell you in the coming weeks as we’ve got shirts, patches, and coozies all in the works. More info to come soon, but you’ll have to show up to race if you wanna buy any of it. In the meantime here are some photos of our friends standing around drinking beers in public parks.

Craig’s going to have to learn to chug a beer if he wants to regain his Cross Club crown. Andrew and John W. were in a tight battle for 3rd until John puked up his beer on this final corner of the course at Genessee.

Not pictured: Andy’s transparent white bibs. They’ve officially been banned from all future Cross Club “competition.” We’re the UCI of not seeing our friends’ gentalia.

1st – Myers, 2nd – John, 3rd – Nat. Tyler would’ve raced for fourth but was so devastated by Nat’s drinking abilities that he couldn’t even start the final lap.

15 feet away from this group of dirtbags was some sort of Urban Planning Committee. I’m fairly sure that they were discussing ways of barring people like us from public parks.

 

Almost…

It is not without a healthy amount of shame that I admit for literally the first time that this rain is starting to wear me down. Every pair of shoes I own have been wet for what feels like weeks, I’ve resorted to wearing snowshoeing pants on my commute and, worst of all, how the fuck am I supposed to mark the course for our upcoming super rad urban ‘cross race if it won’t stop raining for a half hour at a time?

I mean, what the hell is wrong with the world when a man can’t ride his bike around painting bright green shamrocks all over the city?

This probably washed away an hour after I painted it.

 

I just want to help my friends get rad. Is that too much to ask?

You might all be roaming the city following vaguely arrow-shaped green puddles tomorrow, but we’ll have a good time no matter what. March can eat a dick. Let’s ride bikes and get drunk. Won’t you join me?

The Ides of March

2 hour-ish urban ‘cross race.

Saturday, March 17th

Schooner Exact Brewing

Meet at noon, race at 1

$5

 

 

Ides of March – This Saturday

This ain’t no Ryan Gosling movie – the final Frost Club is nigh!

We spent the last 6 weeks putting together a course that we believe combines more trail than any other urban ride/race in Seattle. There’s some fast swoopy stuff, some slightly more technical stuff, some hill climbs, some stair climbs, some whiskey, and as a result of that combination probably some puking. Not to get all Phil Conners on you, but the weather looks to be perfect – 50 degrees and light rain.

What to expect: An hour and a half to two hours of urban ‘cross riding. This isn’t an alleycat, so you don’t need a bag.

Details: The race begins and ends at Schooner Exact brewing. Meet at noon on Saturday, March 17th. Yes, I know that this is St. Patricks Day; come party with the professionals during the day before you go drinking with the amateurs that night. The race will start around 1. If you’re late you can always try to catch up.

As with all of the Frost Club series, the race is only $5 and all proceeds benefit The Leukemia Lymphoma Society. We’ve got t-shirts as well, and we’d love it if you bought one. They still look like this:

We’ve got a few prizes from Chrome and Knog and the Softest Kitten (whatever that means) will win these sweet brakes.

To Sum up:

Saturday March, 17th

Schooner Exact Brewing @ Noon

Urban ‘cross race

$5

Just come to our fucking race already. You’ll have fun.

 

 

Rolling the dice

Spurred by a strong Northward wind the last couple of days, both Sally and I played what he refers to as the “Seattle Gamble” and rode into work without fenders yesterday. This may not be all that exceptional to those of you at home, but when you work in Kent and Auburn, you learn to live with a stiff headwind on nearly every 20 mile ride back into the city. A tailwind is like coming across a unicorn holding a 4 leaf clover in between its rabbit feet.

I already regret making this.

We’ve both got relatively new Militises (Militii? Militisees? What’s the plural on that, Sally?) and haven’t had a ton of chances to ride ’em with all of the rain and off-season, illegal cross races.

I'm the good guy because I ride a white bike. Sally... not so much.

This is the first carbon road bike I’ve ever had and it seemed like a good excuse to finally mount the rad ’10 SSCXWC CatEye Strada that’s been collecting dust for over a year now.

I haven’t used a bike computer in probably 6 years, so I’m looking forward to the time when I run directly into a curb because I’m fiddling with the buttons and staring at my embarrassingly slow average speed.

I know that I’m a total “homer” when it comes to all things Raleigh, but I fucking love the Militis. The only thing that I can compare it to is the first time I rode the Hodala carbon SS ‘cross bike. It feels responsive in a way that none of my other bikes do. If you’ve got the means and the wherewithal, I highly recommend it. If nothing else, I believe that Joey is driving a van full of them around to some races and events that you can test ride. My best guess is that he’ll be at some crits this season, though I don’t really know what the hell I’m talking about. Seattle Bike Expo, maybe?

Yada yada yada, Sally and I each made our way home from the dirty South and stopped into Schooner Exact for a pint of their Schoon White. Check it out while it is still on draft.

I’m running out of steam so this is probably a good time to tell you that this entire post was mostly just so that I could make that dumb unicorn at the top of the page. I’ll do better next time.

Cheers,

Update: At some point yesterday someone found this site by searching for “loser has to wash the winner’s car in a bikini.” I couldn’t be more proud of all of us.

 

Badge of honor?

Our good buddy over at GoMeansGo just posted a photo of a headbadge for Aherne Cycles by Karl Edwards.

This got me thinking about what a classic-looking Hodala head badge would look like. It’d obviously have to have the drinking lion of Flanders. A SS cog? A pair of tighty whiteys with wings? “Tonight we drink – Tomorrow we race… and then keep drinking.” The Ham? A drinking sasquatch to pair with the lion? It’d probably need a cougar on there to represent a certain Hodala members recent conquests.

Got ideas? Leave ’em in the comments and I’ll see what I can do to come up with a design that we’ll probably never use anyway.

Hodala Juniors – may God help them

 

Meet Ellie – the newest member of our surprisingly quickly expanding Juniors squad. Congratulations, Matt and Heather.

Growing up in a brewery, surrounded by a bunch of dirtbag cyclists… It’s going to be a rough childhood kid. Hang on.

Nevermind. This squad is growing even more quickly than previously imagined and this is Sally’s nephew.

Breakin’ Hearts and looking in the mirror

This weekend had a very Narcissus and Echo feel to it. Step into the Wayback Machine with me and let’s take a trip back to Sunday.

While USA Cyling may not condone it…

USA Cycling Rule 1A33 – The cyclo-cross season begins September 1st of one year and ends on the last day of February of the following year.

…we tend to enjoy getting rad all year round. This past weekend was the second race in the Frost Club series – a special couples-themed Valentine’s relay/madison-style cross race for all of you lovers out there.

The HeartBraker began with a 3-legged Le Mans start…

Sally and I are embarrassingly good at the 3-legged race.

Now that I look at the photo, does anyone else see that Myers and F-Joe aren’t connected while they’re stepping over that barrier? I feel like this should be added to CXMagazine’s Readers Choice awards for “biggest controversy” after Rapha not getting tattoos at SSCXWC and SF basically keeping the race instead of sending it to Philly (No, we’re not over either of those things.)

…  Where were we? … Oh, 3-legged Le Mans. Partners grabbed their bike and had to trade off 3 minute-ish hot laps around a surprisingly hard course and pass off the bike that they were sharing.

Brett and Jamie

Half of the reason we decided on this format was to see whose bike Tyler and Trista would ride. They chose hers:

All of you need to buy some more Nuun so that they can replace that Kona with a shiny new Raleigh.

After 12 laps, each rider on the top 3 teams had to slam a beer before their final laps.

Nat doing what he does best.

Myers and F-Joe ended up running away with the race, which is a little less surprising now that there’s evidence that they were cheating from the start line.

That flower is like the scarlet letter of cheating at fake cyclocross races.

Fortunately, there’s another race coming up for the rest of us to try and steal their glory. The Ides of March will be a ‘cross alleycat on March 17th. Show up to Schooner Exact around noon. There’ll be more info coming soon so keep an eye out here or over at Red Lantern Races.

Bring some money with you as well because you’re going to want one of the new Frost Club shirts.

I promise that you'll look this good wearing it.

All of the proceeds from these races and the t-shirts goes to the Leukemia Lymphoma Society so just buy one already. If you want one and can’t make it out to the race just email me and we’ll figure it out – hodalacx [at] gmail [dot] com .

After drinking beer and riding bikes, it certainly seems like our favorite thing to do is make videos of ourselves drinking beer and riding bikes. Fortunately, it seems like Cleveland has had some extra time on his hands recently and made these for your enjoyment.

Here’s a little ditty about Dirty Randy.

Hodala One Point One: Dirty Randy from Ryan Richardson on Vimeo.

And a video about our scantily clad time in SF for SSCXWC.

SSCXWC: Hodala Sparkle Party from Ryan Richardson on Vimeo.

Just in case you aren’t quite tired of all of this navel gazing, Pat Kehoe produced a rad little video portrait of our own Craig Etheridge.

Craig Etheridge from Circadian Pictures on Vimeo.

That kid is going to take over the world some day.

Alright, folks. That’s all that I’ve got in me today. Put your ‘cross bikes back together and come get rad with us in March. Hope to see you then.

The World’s Greatest

Now that we’re finally on the other side of the holiday madness, it is time to talk about how rad we are. Cue The World’s Greatest by R. Kelly on your preferred music player if you want a proper soundtrack to the rest of this half-assed, epically procrastinated post.

A couple of weeks ago formally marked the end of our season. There was a bit of drinking, some cross riding, dudes in bikinis, some more drinking, and an enormous fucking cowbell.

That Friday marked the fifth? sixth? annual Xmas Sweater Pubcrawl in Ballard. I’m not sure if we’re all getting old but it was surprisingly chill this year. No one even had to be physically carried out of a bar. Weird.

I broke the snowflake on the left because I'm a jerk.

I’m assuming that this year’s edition was particularly calm because our fearless leader wasn’t in attendance for the first time in a few years.

We really should’ve taken more advantage of the evening since Colin moved the annual Urban Coyote ride to 11am on Saturday. Still a little bleary eyed a few of us made our way over to Brouwer’s for the urban ‘cross poker drinking ride. To be honest, I don’t even know who won. It probably should’ve been Brian for shotgunning a 24 oz Kirin Malt Liquor, but it was probably Nat because he cheats. There’s a little write-up over here. We rode some bikes and had some drinks on an unseasonably sunny day. It was rad.

At the beginning of this past ‘cross season Hodala made a bet with the guys over at Stanley and Alki Rubicon about who would “win” single speed ‘cross this year. Predictably, we crushed them and won this.

This thing is a bitch to ring but it is crazy loud.

The bet entailed the loser washing the winner’s bikes while wearing bikinis and the 2nd place riders serving us beers. Schooner Exact was kind enough to host yet another of our dumb events and we took over the tasting room, the patio, and half of the parking lot to throw a party celebrating how awesome we are.

Identities hidden to protect the children of these folks from unneeded humiliation.

A little more water than necessary might’ve ended up directly in our bottom brackets and headsets, but Stanley did a pretty amazing job, so we tipped ’em.

We also set up a pixie bike course that involved some astroturf, stairs, and a little bit of extra course tape.

Which led to this:

I’m fairly sure that we ended up having a Finals and I think that PonyBoy was in it, but I don’t have any idea who won this either. All of us, I guess. Craig’s got videos of the bike wash and races over on his blog – Scatman.

Soft Like Kitten – I’m calling you out. Put your shame on the line for 2012 and join in the competition. Not that it’ll matter. I look forward to a long line of HODALA 2012, 2013, 2014, etc. being stamped into this thing and the inevitable day when one of us breaks our teeth out trying to drink from it.

 

 

Epic packaging

I made my crappy photo "epic" just for you.

That, my friends, is the vast majority of your Relegate t-shirts being shipped out today. Sorry for the delay but we ended up having to order and print more shirts to get these to you all. Thanks again for making a little fun of Rapha with us. I’ll have a few extra shirts for sale at the SSCX party this Sunday if you missed out.

In other news – Craig took 1st on Saturday and 2nd on Sunday at the GP in Bend last weekend. I think that it is safe to say that, were there such a thing, he would’ve won the overall SS series. Hopefully next year we can pressure the GP into keeping track of his points and there’ll be some more SS competition traveling around to the national races.

Update: There’s a big write up on Craig over at Podium Insight.

All of this signals the end of our racing season and when the real drinking season begins. Similar to racing, we still dress up in the exact same clothes and make complete asses of ourselves in public. It should be fun.

See you under the bar,

God Damn, we’re a bunch of good-looking dirtbags.

At last year’s MFG season end party at Brouwer’s Cafe, Brian Myers won a two hour photography session from Mathew J Clark. Instead of using it on his kids, he graciously donated it to the team so that we could document the Woodland Park race this year.

Here’s the entire set, if you care. [Updated Photo Links]

Thanks to Brian, Matthew and everyone out there who puts up with our shenanigans.

Case in point:

Courtesy of the fine folks at Ritte Racing.

 

 

Do you like to party-party? Yes, we like to party-party.

I thought I’d go ahead and post a couple of videos that were taken while we were in SF, before the whole “Raphy-blah-blah” thing happened (yes, I said “Raphy,” no that was not a typo).

Before you party, you have to pre-party. It’s like stretching before you run, or drinking a beer before you ride up a hill. Without the pre-party, your actual partying will never reach the high level of performance that people expect from you. We here at Hodala take our partying seriously, and so I present you with a video of a couple of our members pre-partying:

Pre-Party

 

Of course, after the pre-party, comes the party, and no party is complete without someone telling you that you’re ruining their good time. Ruining things is something that Hodala also excels at, just ask this dude at second 45 of the below video, or really anyone who has ever come into contact with us:

Cessparty

 

Keep partying.