Breck Epic Newsletter
Categories, Cut-off Times, Swank Singlespeed Frames, Rules and a Lube Offer You Can’t Refuse
May 20, 2009
Hey everyone. Just so you know, most of this newsletter was typed from the inside of a hotel bathroom in Crested Butte. Colorado. We’ve got our just-north-of-insane toddler, his increasingly cranky infant brother and our 160lb Malamute packed into this tiny room (qualifier: it was also free) in Crested Butte while my wife entertains new ideas to help pay our mortgage.
It was like a heavyweight title fight getting those two monkeys off to sleep, thus my position of typing this on a short-term vacation-rental crapper. C’mon – admit it, you’ve never had a newsletter brewed up this way, have you? I care enough to be honest and I am honestly sitting on a toilet right now. The seat happens to be down, but I am truthfully enthroned.
Enough about that. We’ve got a 6-day stage race coming up. You probably knew that. What you might not have known is that we’ve added one more category and are considering adding another. You also might not have known that Spot is making kickass trophy frames for all singlespeed category winners. Or that Squirt Lube is 100% environmentally friendly, works like elfin’ magic and that if you’re registered for the race that we’re going to be sending you a 4oz bottle so you can consider getting on the program an not polluting our lovely watershed with your solvent-based lube.
There I go again. Sorry. I’ve got a limited attention span. Oh look! A toaster cozy!
Also in this issue – updates on sponsorship, Breck Bike Week and the rulebook as well as a catty little reminder about deadlines.
Don’t know wtf any of this means? Visit BreckEpic.com. Or better yet, register. We’ve still got a few spots open.
The GreenSpeed Project
Distinctive Backcountry Events in Support of Open Space
Whatcha Get in This Issue:
50+ Solo Category Added. Team Relay, Anyone?
Deadlines for Camping and Meal Plans
New Sponsors – Spot Trophy Frames, Giro, Street Swell, Tokyo Joe’s, Dale’s Pale Ale
Squirt – A Better Lube
Breck Bike Week Info
Rules and Cutoff Times
Squirt’s Position Explained…in Great Detail
About The Greenspeed Project and The Breck Epic and the Greenspeed Project
50+ Solo Category Offerred. Solo Relay, Anyone?
About a year ago we began picking your brain about what categories to offer. With your help, we came up with a list that we felt addressed your wants and the format’s needs pretty well. Since then there’s been a steady flow of requests for a 50+ category. When combined with the evidence that we have one or two other categories that are lightly populated if at all, it made sense for us to add 50+ Solo Men to the mix. As of today, we’ve got 6 guys in it, so it looks like it was the right call.
Another category on our radar screen as a potential addition for this year is “Solo Team Relay”. Sounds a little oxymoronic. Instead of our usual offering of straight-up moronic. Here’s the scoop – a lot of folks just can’t take an entire week off for the race, yet would still like to compete on what I’ve increasingly come to think of as the world’s largest backcountry trail network. “Solo Team Relay” is a category that we’re considering adding for teams of 2-5 people each of whom want to race one or two stages each. It’s pretty simple – one person from the team toes the starting line each day and races solo. Then another person the next day…and so on. It’s not official yet – we need a bit of feedback from you guys. Like it? Hate it? Email us HERE.
Deadline for Camling and Meal Plans, May 31st!
We’ve got to get our final orders in for tents, sleeping pads, port-o-shitters waffles and beef wellingtons. All you monkeys who’re coming but have yet to commit to where you’re staying or what you’ll be eating must sign up for these a la carte items by May 31st so we can properly prepare for you. The process is simple: head to the Breck Epic registration page on SBO, log in, click the link for your category, then click Racer Support Options. You can add meal plans, additional banquet tickets, solo, team or RV camping.
If you haven’t registered yet but are still planning on it May 31st is still the last day to add these items to your race experience. You must be registered to purchase them. That sounds kinda self-serving sales tactic. Our apologies – we really do need to submit final head counts for this stuff.
Sponsorship Update: Spot Trophy Bikes, Giro, Street Swell, Tokyo Joe’s, Velogear, Dale’s Pale Ale/Oskar Blues
We’re going to sing the same song that we have been from the beginning here – we’re a little blown away by the support we’ve received for the event. In the past week we’ve brought the folks above on board and each of them adds a bit of flavor to the mix.
Spot Bikes – our friends down in Golden have signed on and they’re going to produce trophy frames for the winners of the singlespeed categories. We asked them to come up with a design that reminded us of the socks that our grandpa wore on his daily golf outing well into his dotage. I think you’ll agree that they nailed it.
Giro – we all know that they’ve been making kick-ass helmets for years, but they’ve also recently released a whole line of optics including goggles and glasses as well as gloves…and all of it is exactly what you’d expect from them; well thought-out, good looking product. Their glasses feature Zeiss lenses – those of you fluent in the photography world will recognize the name…and the quality that it implies.
Street Swell – not your traditional bike race sponsorship target, but a score for us. And for you. The guys from Street Swell will be on-site demoing boards for the duration of the event. They’re super-vibey…think of them as the townies of skateboarding. Beautifully hand-crafted right here in CO. If you have any hipster in you you’re going to find yourself pining for one. No pun intended.
Velogear – you guys probably all know Velogear as the trinkets and trash website that peddled posters and Park Tool pizza cutters. You owe it to yourself to take a spin through the new site – they’ve reinvented themselves and their product offerings are…well…sick. They keep picking up all these esoteric brands that you’d probably have a hard time finding in your local shop. They really have an eye for this stuff. Plus they’re old friends and great folks.
Dale’s Pale Ale/Oskar Blues Brewery – what’s a bike race without beer? The good guys from Dale’s are going to be here. And guess what? They’re bringing beer. Lots of it. And all of it is good (if slightly hallucinogenic after a long bike ride), but undoubtedly magically delicious. Dale and his merry band of minions have been supporting mountain biking in a big way over the past half-decade of so contributing much of themselves and their time, making each race vibe-ier…and definitely inebriated-er. Dale himself rocks a Spot, a Maverick and a Yeti…and has been known to pop up on a podium or two.
Tokyo Joe’s – longtime supporter of the Rocky Mountain cycling community, the good folks at Tokyo Joe’s are providing gift cards that we’ll use as prizes and for volunteers. If you haven’t eaten at Tokyo Joe’s you need to swing by on your way through Denver. Exit “Denver West” on I-70, head south and then a quick turn west. There’s a Tokyo Joe’s right there. Get some sushi. Get a noodle bowl. Maybe some potstickers. For sure get a snickerdoodle. Fresh food fast. You need to experience it to believe it.
Get On the Enviro-Lube Bus With Squirt
Squirt’s been on board as a sponsor for a long, long time – as long as we’ve been around. They also underwrite some of the other really, really cool stuff and people in the cycling community – The Cape Epic, Travis Brown, Ned Overend. We (Squirt and The Breck Epic) have a modest proposal for you to consider. Over the course of the event you’ll make several stream crossings each day. Each time you dip your drivetrain into a stream little bits of solvent-based lube are left behind. Squirt is a 100% environmentally friendly and biodegradable product, and aside from that, it actually works.
Dewet and Larry from Squirt have put together a persuasive argument for getting on their program…with all the reasons why carefully lined out and explained, including extending the life of your drivetrain components. I’ve attached the whole glorious rationale at the end of this newsletter. I’ll warn you, it’s long, but it’s also really interesting reading. The long and short of it is that they’re going to ship each Breck Epic competitor a 4-ounce bottle of lube so that they have the option of getting on their program in advance of the race. What do we think about it? Well, we are talking about our watershed. And the stuff not only works, it works great. So we’re in favor.
BRECK BIKE WEEK UPDATE
Is your spouse or support crew looking for something to do while you’re off self-flaggelating on course all day? Breck Bike Week is on! We’re going to have 6 marked “big-loop” rides of 20-30 miles – all ride-able from town, guided interpretive rides around our community’s trail network and mining ruins, bike-in movies, seminars on topics ranging from nutrition to bike fit, Shimano Kids Races and even a bike demo if you’d like to try some of the newer gear. Everything in Breck Bike Week is FREE. We’ll publish a complete schedule of offerings once it’s finalized.
RULES AND CUTOFF TIMES
We’ve put a lot of thought into this one over the past 6 months and recently we’ve been hearing a bit of concern voiced from some of you about the rules, and in specific, the time cuts. The rules are simple – you need to wear a helmet. You must be over 18. You can’t litter. You can’t tow, be pushed or have someone else carry your bikes. You CAN use however many bikes you want, you just need to switch your number plate around. Your partner drop out? You’re now a solo.
There are more rules, but I don’t think we need to regulate this thing to death. Common sense, common decency a bit of highminded sportsmanship dictate the framework of our rulebook or guidelines if you want to call them that. Litter in our backcountry though and prepare to be forcibly fed that gel packet, have your ass monkey-tossed out of the race and have me personally broadcast the fact of your self-absorption to our entire mailing list. I’m serious.
The other stuff? There’s a give and take. A dialogue between rider and organizer. Some rules are inviolable…like the litter rule. The helmet rule also falls under that category. There will be a full list of rules published, but we just can’t plan for everything, so it’ll also be a living document.
Now about time cuts; for this year we’re going with a relegation strategy. If you’re lagging behind we’ll have the option of moving you up on course and assigning your time as something more that the last place finisher on the day. The pros? Well, EVERYONE finishes. If you cross the finish line on day 6, you get the belt buckle. The cons? I’m willing to admit that it removes a bit of emphasis from speed and tends to reward stick-to-it-iveness. I can live with that. We may think differently next year, but for this year we’re going with this.
30% discount at Great Western Lodging – that’s right, 30% lopped off the top of your bill. Check ‘em out at GWlodging.com and be sure to mention discout code BE09
RV dump station at sanitation facility – this was pointed out to us a few weeks ago. If you’re bringing an RV, there’s a dump station about 5 miles past Frisco on Highway 9, right across the road from the high school. It’s a self-pay ($5 for RV’s, $10 for buses).
Twitter – the best signature line that I’ve read recently in several of the online forums that I stalk reads “Nobody cares that you Twitter”. So true. Twitter is like Bounty…”3X MORE Self-Absorbent! Despite that, we’ve signed up. We’ll be publishing a handful of pre-race gems (quite possibly loaded with anxiety or profanity…quite likely both), and live updates during the race. We promise to go away and not bother you once the race is over. We will NEVER Twitter you with random URL’s.
Anthony Sloan – many of you know him as the Yeti Demo Guy, or from his time as a manager at Wheat Ridge Cyclery. Anthony passed away in his sleep last week. His presence and personality will be sorely missed. A kind and gentle soul. Rest in peace Anthony.
ALL ABOUT SQUIRT…INCLUDING GETTING YOUR FREE BOTTLE
As event organizer, and custodian of the land we traverse during that time, it is also very important to us that Squirt lube is 100% biodegradable and contains no solvent (after 58 days it is totally gone). If you consider that during the 6 days of racing, a total of 300 bikes may do 18 000 stream crossings (10 per day per bike), and at every stream crossing a little lube washes off, you can imagine the overall impact of petroleum lubes or solvent based dry lubes washing off has. We try to limit the environmental impact of our event as much as possible, and we ask you to do the same (we actually ask you to do it always, and wherever you ride).
The Squirt guys told us that it is important to have a well waxed chain – then it performs great in dry and wet conditions, come rain, mud or shine (you can see this in the reviews as well. To achieve this it is necessary to clean your chain well, and let it dry. Then apply Squirt liberally, and don’t wipe off (in the old days lubes were wiped off because they got so dirty, you wanted as little as possible on the chain, now Squirt stays so clean that you can actually leave the stuff you pay for on there to do its job). You also never have to degrease again (see argument in previous sentence), you can just brush it off once a week, and you can reapply before every ride if you want to. Now and then you can use a toothpick to pick off the top derailleur wheel, and middle chainring. A well waxed chain repels water and mud. Having a good coating of wax on the chain also prolongs it’s life, and that of the whole drive train (an often replaced and costly item). See here on increased chain life: http://www.squirtlube.com/dominicbuscemi.php .
Now for the offer: we would like all of you to arrive here with a well Squirted chain. To this end the Squirt guys will mail you a free 4 oz bottle if you would like to keep our streams clean. Yes, we know most of you use Squirt already, and you will still receive your free 4 oz bottle in your race pack. All of you can probably still follow the above instructions with regard to application and not degreasing with good results.
You can ask Travis Brown at the race about his experience with not degreasing: “On a feedback note. I raced a 100k race in Gunnison (Gunnison Growler) on Sunday that took six hours and had a quiet drive train the whole time. I am leaving quite a bit of build up on the chain and cogs and that seems to work pretty well for the long stuff.” and: “Hermosa Creek Classic was this weekend and again full of mud. I had several thick coats of Squirt on for the start and I think it is better than anything else in the wet as well as the dry. My drivetrain was still quiet when things dried out on the long hotel draw climb after the all the water crossings. This year I won!”
So if you want to receive your bottle of Squirt in the mail – do nothing. If you are already a Squirt user, let us know and we will put your bottle in your race pack (to keep mailing costs down). If you do not want to make use of the offer and you want to mess up or streams, also let us know, and we will not send you a bottle (but we will be nice and put one in your race pack anyway – you will see the light).
And now, the testimonials from the guys at Squirt:
We can tell you it is the best, but we prefer to let others say it. You can read here why cyclingnews.com says Squirt is “the best wax lube yet” and gave us 5 yellow jerseys.
You can see here why bikerumor.com says ” Squirt Lube lives up to every claim it lists on its website, label and marketing.” and gave us 5 thumbs up: .
You can also check the reviews on mtbr.com and see 7 reviews giving an overall rating of 5/5 (and one nut case giving 1/5 – probably works for the opposition (what opposition?).
Also please see why Cycling Weekly, the biggest selling magazine in the UK, said that Squirt is as close as they’ve come to the Holy Grail of lubes: (scroll down a little on the page), and why Squirt was selected as one of their products of the year, and one of 12 receiving 10/10.
Here you can see a number of other reviews: http://www.squirtlube.com/reviews.php.
Subaru | Crank Bros | Santa Cruz | Jett MTB | Hammer Nutrition
Spot Bikes | Easton | Fox Racing Shox | Mountain Bike | The Alpineer
Ergon | Great Western Lodging | Kuhl USA | Squirt Lube | Yakima
WTB | Aerobie
Topfusion | The Boulder Ice Cream Company | The Boulder Sausage Company
Dale’s | Giro | Street Swell | Velogear.com | Tokyo Joe’s
About The Greenspeed Project & The Breck Epic
The Greenspeed Project, Inc. was established in the fall of 2008 with the sole intent of funding backcountry initiatives, trail maintenance and trail system improvements through the medium of slightly left-of-center backcountry events. In addition to producing ‘greener’ events than then norm, we’re committed to aligning ourselves with likeminded partners in the outdoor industry. A significant portion of the proceeds from our events and races is donated directly back to local and regional land managers with the intention that it be earmarked for the items mentioned above.
The Breck Epic MTB Stage Race (July 5-10, 2009) is a 6-day ultra-endurance backcountry affair to be held in the massive tangle of backcountry surrounding Breckenridge, CO. As a race its mission is to showcase the incredible work that visionary land managers here have accomplished by pairing an ambitious and shared vision with a ‘let’s roll our sleeves up and get this thing done together’ mentality. It is one of a small few such races in US, and certainly among the most difficult.
If you’d like to find out more we’ll happily fire a mind-bullet your way stuffed with an ungodly amount of sleep-inducing propaganda. No need to send us a note, we’ll know that you want it. We can also email it.
P | 970.485.5847
E | MikeMac@BreckEpic.com
W | www.BreckEpic.com
B | www.BreckEpic.Blogspot.com