Friday, October 23, 2009

Mountainbike Action ... from Canada

Yesterday my team mate Eli, told me that a friend saw me in the Mountainbike Action Magazine from Canada on an Ad.

I got the photo and in a few weeks I'll get the magazine. To be honest I am pretty stoked.

Take a look too:

I'll come back with more news soon.


Monday, October 19, 2009

Ardealul Trophy a.k.a. Regional Champs.

Yesterday took part one of the last mountainbike races of the year (excepting the Winter Race at least). To be honest, after seeing the start of the last week, with snow, rain, low temperatures, windy conditions, I was sceptical that the race will not be canceled. But it didn't rained in the last days so Saturday, me, my team mate Eli and some other friends were on the course, cleaning and marking it. The course was modified from the last years but this helped to improve the technicity and to make it a little bit more fun for the riders and more enjoyable for the public.

Before the start I've helped with Tudor, my team mate Eli to finish marking the course but I must admit that I had time to make a good warm up. The start was really fast and from the first lap I had more than 30 second lead with Luci Logigan, the national XC Champion from the rest of riders. He is preparing for the National CX Championships so he was runnign a CX bike. He was fast on uphills and really strong but I had my advantages on downhills. After the second lap I've took my chances and push the limit. I had almost 1 minute in front of Luci but in the last lap because I was a bit tired and I've pushed the limit on a descend I've lost some seconds, thing that let Luci to catch me, finishing 10sec behing him, so I was 2nd overall. But I was 1st at U23 and Elite for the XC challenge so for me is good to win 3rd time in a row this race.
The bike was really good, riding the Scalpel makes me feel really fast. Some of the friends told me that I made a wrong choice using the Continental Race King tires, but I told them that if someone can ride this track with a Cyclocross bike I cand ride it too wit my Race Kings. Again no flats with my Joe's No flats sealant so I can say that I am happy. The only problem was that my tip toes freezed a bit in the last lap, also my fingertips. But the conditions were the same for everyone so this isn't a excuse.

The result motivates me for the Winter Race and for the upcoming season. I really wanna have a better season because it will be my first season on Elite Cat.

I would like to thanks again to my sponsors. Without them I couldn't be where I am now : Cannondale Bikes, Maros Sport, Ashima, Continental, Syntace, VDO, Sapim, Adidas Eyewear, Xpedo, Buff, Sram, Kool Stop and DT Swiss and my new sponsors Joe's No Flats, Grip Grab and KMC Chains. Also I must thank to: my parents, Simona and to everyone who supports me. I would like to thank to Attila Czirjak, Petra Penciulescu and for the photos.

More photos can be seen HERE.

Yesterday I was guest for a Sports Live show, called Eurpa Sport on Tele Europa Nova so soon I'll post the whole show. I'm glad to see that televisions are using their space not only for football.

Stay dry,

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Monday, October 12, 2009

Neuzer Bike Party - worst race ever !

You know how it's gonna be the day when you wake up. And last Saturday, when I woke up, I knew that I won't have my best day. Was 5:30A.M. I took my first breakfast and I've prepared for the race from Targu Mures - Neuzer bike party.

The car trip wasn't that fast so my second breakfast was on the way there.

We arrived pretty late ... 20 minutes before the start, so the warm-up was almost 0.

Despite all this I had a good start and managed to keep in good position for 35 km from the 50 km. After that I started to feel some stomach ache. In the last 5 km I saw that I have no water and I realized that I won't have my best race. I've finised 3rd on my age category and I guess 6th or 7th overall.

Like this wasn't enough, when we were at the award ceremony, my team mate called me, some one broke into our car (so watch out when you buy a Dacia Logan !) and took my photo case where I had an external flash, a lens for my camera, my mp3 and an amount of money. They also took my team mate laptop bag, where he had his laptop, his video camera, a compact photo camera and a mic. Total damage: aprox. 1500 euros. F**k. They didn't touch his bike, or our equipemtn or anything else. Just these two bag. I was lucky a bit that I had my camera and another lens to take some photos...

After that you can imagine what happened: cops came and told us that we were stupid that we left the thing into the car (but the goods were not visible from outside). I started to be angry... Finally some other cops came and took some photos, fingerprints, statements and so one.

Personally I am really pissed off because I worked for that goods and some stupid idiot came and took them in 1 minute. So, I've learned a few things: buy an alarm system for your car, always take your goods with you (because I don't think that they will steal your underwear), talk to the cops and explain them that they should watch out and most important thing: if someone will came and tell me that has a laptop for 150euros even if his value is 1000euros, call the cops!

I don't think that something will happen but I do think like my team mate Eli that all the thief are stupid and they will all end up in the jail. Now I have to get money to buy a new lens and a new flash. By the way, Eli posted on his web site an article. You can see there what was stolen, and the particularities, maybe someone will find them somehow: HERE IS THE ARTICLE. The article is in Romanian.

Some more photos from this race can be seen HERE

I would like to thanks again to my sponsors. Without them I couldn't be where I am now : Cannondale Bikes, Maros Sport, Ashima, Continental, Syntace, VDO, Sapim, Adidas Eyewear, Xpedo, 661, Buff, Sram, Kool Stop and DT Swiss and my new sponsor Joe's No Flats. Also I must thank to: my parents, Simona and to everyone who supports me.

Speechless for the things that can happen,

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PS Maybe now everyone will understand why Madonna was booed in Bucharest !

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Simon says...

Cannondale debuts groundbreaking Simon suspension concept

Cannondale's new Project Simon electronically controlled oil damper has been in development for a full five years – and yet it still isn't available to the public. In fact, it's still just barely out of the proof-of-concept phase and Cannondale won't even offer up a projected release date or target price.

But if it's everything it's cracked up to be, it'll be more than well worth the wait and is far from just some rehash of Cannondale's ill-fated ELO system.

The twin-tube Simon damper is extraordinarily simple from a mechanical standpoint, consisting of a single solid piston pushing oil back and forth through just one – yes, just one – orifice-style damper.

A retractable pin adjusts the size of that port, however, and that pin is controlled by an ultra-fast acting Cannondale-exclusive linear stepper motor that can reportedly go from full-open to full-closed in just six milliseconds.

Simon says...

So what, you ask? The variable-size port and two-way oil flow means that that one circuit can produce a wide range of damping rates for both compression and rebound without the need for multiple shim stacks, valves, and ports.

Add in the array of position and force sensors scattered at various points in the special Lefty chassis and some sophisticated software and what you get is a suspension fork that adjusts itself every two milliseconds based on current conditions and rider programming at any point in the travel range.

For example, want a highly linear feel? Simon leaves the valve mostly open for lots of oil flow.

Want a more progressive or abrupt bottom out? Simon gradually closes off the valve towards the end of the travel or leaves it mostly open until the very end of the stroke.

What about a stable pedaling platform? Simon can keep the valve mostly shut at the top of the stroke but then open it up nearly instantly based on information delivered by the on-board accelerometer. Reestablishing the platform after the impact can then be based on elapsed time (like the original Specialized Brain) or subsequent measured bump force (like the new Brain).

And that's just the beginning. The on-board computer offers about 10,000 total possible 'maps', starting with five main modes: cross country, all mountain, downhill, lockout, and travel management (yes, the Simon damper can set top-out and bottom-out points), and each map 'family' is fully customizable via the intuitive on-screen interface.

Even initial setup is remarkably user-friendly with guided prompts that ask riders for their desired overall feel and weight. The computer then comes back with a recommended pressure setting for the air spring and even compares actual sag with the target value.

Simon says... it's simple

The simple physical design and sophisticated surrounding software also yields other advantages. With just one moving part, the stepper motor is estimated to last up to 30 million cycles before a replacement is needed and the software can be easily updated whenever improvements are made without actually having to do anything with the damper itself – with Simon, there are no shim stacks to swap and no needle valves to screw in and out.

Moreover, the simple internal design should eventually be fairly easily transferable to a rear shock, too, with similar benefits and capabilities.

Currently, downsides are limited to battery life, system weight, and cost. According to Cannondale design engineer Stanley Song, run time with the current Li-ion pack can be up to eight hours but as few as two, depending on trail roughness and rider weight.

The high-capacity battery also adds a fair bit of mass though the 130mm-travel Lefty fork still weighs in at just 1,800g (4.0lb) – well in keeping with its competition. Cost is still to be determined but given the amount of development time invested, it's safe to say that Simon won't come cheap.

Will Simon change the face of bicycle suspension design as Shimano may be doing on the transmission side with its Dura-Ace Di2 system? Battery life will definitely need to improve and Cannondale admits there are still bugs to work out but our (extremely) brief test session at least suggests the possibility is there. If nothing else, we're dying to find out.

Article got from they have all the rights on it.

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