Wednesday, October 22, 2008

- BLOGGER APP #9: Jeffrey Carter

NAME: Jeffrey Carter
SPONSOR/TEAM: Mafia Racing

Where are you from?
I am an East Coaster. I grew up in suburban Connecticut and lived in Boston for ten years before moving to Colorado in 2004. I learned to ride back east and therefore love rocks, roots, dense forests and mud.
What kind of bike do you ride?
Like any mountain bike nut, I have a few bikes, but the one I consider my true bike is an Independent Fabrication Ti Deluxe.
What do you love about it?
love the plush ride and lightweight of titanium, and that it was made in a city I lived for ten years. I am a lucky to guy to have such a nice bike.
Solo or team competitor? Why?
Solo. Having done and enjoyed three stage races with a partner, I am ready for the challenge of motivating myself for 6 straight days of hard racing.
Done any ultra-endurance stuff before?
Yes I have done three Leadville 100’s, the Breck 100, two Transalps, the BC bike race, the Firecracker 50, the Laramie Enduro, 4 Vermont 50’s, the Durango 100 and others.
Favorite food?
Big sushi feast with friends. Or a cheeseburger and brews at the Cherry Cricket in Denver.
Better Off Dead. Love that buzzed mailman, scenes from Squaw Valley, and Chinese guys with Howard Cosell accents. Brilliant.
The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien. Classic book that I first read when I was ten or so. But it’s not like I wear wizard pajamas or anything. (Ed: Is that a 20-sided die in your pocket?)
Worst experience on a bike?
March 1, 2006. Riding my bike to work, thinking about the workday ahead. Light goes green, cross 6th avenue. Out of the corner of my eye, I see a pickup blowing through the intersection. Holy shit. Hits me square on the left side, up on the hood, break the windshield, world is spinning. Car stops, everything hurts, but everything moves. This is a good sign. Onlookers call 911, on the backboard, to the ER, then to surgery. 6 broken bones, 13 weeks of casts, hit and run. Firecracker 50 on July 4.
Best experience on a bike?
The 2004 Transalp Challenge. I had only raced my bike a few times in some fifty milers in VT. It seemed so daunting- 400 miles, 75,000 feet of climbing, eight days, ungodly fast partner- beyond anything I had attempted before. I went on rainy road rides in Boston in March; I lied to work and road tripped to Pisgah to train in April. Arriving in Mittenwald, I was petrified at the site of hundreds of people who looked fitter than I. But it totally ruled. I wiped out, I bonked, I cried, I finished and I loved it.
Tell us about your LBS (Local Bike Shop):
My local shop is Turin in Denver. These guys are solid. Always psyched on bikes, talking gear, tons of advice, interested in their customers. My fiancé and I get great service there. Like getting your bike put up on the stand on a busy Saturday afternoon, in front of ALOT of people, small but significant problem fixed while you wait. Ten bucks. I rarely shop online anymore because of the service I get at Turin.
Tell us about your favorite ‘local’ ride:
This goes back to my days in Boston when I would ride the Middlesex Fells. Far from being trapped in an East coast city, I’d hop on my bike and spin through the city from urban living to wooded rooty singletrack in half an hour. Over the ten years I rode there, my loop evolved, sections got cleaned and memories and a rider were made. Finish the loop, head down the hill, and catch the vibe of the city on my way back home. Sprint up that last hill before home on the way to a cold one.
Tell us about your favorite ride EVER:
There are so many killer rides, but my all time favorite trail is the section of Colorado Trail from Kenosha Pass to the Swan River drainage. I’ve ridden it in a few incarnations, including an ill-conceived solo round trip to Breckenridge and back. I recall one ride in particular with cloudless skies, late afternoon views of South Park glowing in the golden light of fall. After the demoralizing climb back up to Georgia Pass, the CO trail descent to Kenosha, with its tacky brown dirt and yellow rooms created by a canopy of aspens, is one to remember.
Describe a sponsor or company you admire and why you admire them:
I really admire Dirt Rag magazine as it covers many aspects of cycling, most of which are relevant to my life as a commuter, mountain biker, racer and occasional road rider. In particular I like their constant focus on bicycle advocacy and trail access issues.
Who will play you in the Breck Epic movie and why?
That guy from Breaking Away because he kind of looks like me. That said, that movie was like thirty years ago and he may have fallen into a life of alcoholism and drugs only to have cleaned up, found god, and been in a True Hollywood Story. So yeah, that guy. This will be his big comeback. (Ed: he DOES look like you!)
What do you hope to get out of this experience? Expectations/goals/etc.
A good time. Not a throw-eggs-at-Ryan-Seacrest good time, because that may be asking too much. I hope to convince a bunch of friends to race as well, and spend the week going as hard as I can, riding incredible trail, enjoying the perfect weather I have arranged, seeing familiar faces, and making new friends. I’d imagine that for most people considering this event, mountain biking is a huge passion, but their time is often occupied by competing interests. The Breck Epic or stage races in general, offer total immersion into the scene of this collective passion, a chance to develop a rivalry with that guy who keeps passing you on the climbs, to meet a friend of a friend, get a glimpse of the fastest pros, and the sense of community from having done it all together. An event like this frames your year, giving context to those bonk filled April road rides as much as the all day September singletrack-a-thons that feel so easy from a season of hard won fitness.
Tell us about your history as a cyclist or in the industry:
I’m a regular guy with a job and a house who has been riding mountain bikes for about fifteen years. First because it was new and fun. Then because it was good exercise and more fun than running. But over time, mountain biking became something I planned around, something worth taking a vacation for, a prerequisite for a girlfriend, and the always answer to “what are you doing this weekend.” Stage races and ultra endurance races have evolved over this time, becoming the framework of a summer, not because it really matters how I do, but because doing it at all seems just right.
Feel free to blatantly self-promote here. A quote you like, a direct appeal to the voters, some hateful vitriolic slander for your political opponents (see: Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly, Ann Coulter…) This is your space. Decorate it however you’d like.
Look folks, I’m your man. My blog will slay all others and entertain you with a witty recount of the week’s events, as well as erudite comments on cycling, stage racing, the meaning of life and quite possibly the outcome of streaking Breckenridge on July 10, 2009. I promise to chronicle my unmatched training regimen, allowing you to glean the ideal approach to such an event as told by me, a wise sage of mountain bike stage racing.
In all seriousness, I really look forward to the opportunity share the week’s events with the reader. Check out the link to my Transalp blog below. A lot of friends said they really enjoyed reading it. Granted I had to toss back a few euro lagers to get in the right frame of mind to write it, but I’m willing to sabotage my Breck Epic race performance if that’s what it takes.

Links to your work:
I authored a blog for our friends chronicling our adventures before and during the 2007 Transalp. Check it out.

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