The good news is that this is the last "short" Friday of the year! With the time change coming this weekend, we will suddenly have an extra hour of daylight in the evening! Woo hoo! Of course, that likely means a couple weeks of struggling to get up on time in the morning... but it's worth it.
The bad news is that the weather is trying it's best to return to a "more typical March personality" after a week or two of days in or near the 70's. Including tomorrow... with a high temp of just 40 degrees, good chance of snow, and definite chance of wind, I decided to bail on the idea of going up to Fort Fun for the Frostbite TT. Somehow, even after watching the video put together by Dan and the gang over at YourGroupRide, I was still hoping to get out and test the legs by pushing them a bit further. If you make it through the whole course on the video, you are more patient than me;
But hey, that's okay... I'll get up early and do my own time trial on the trainer. That way I'll even have time to get to town in time for the Frozen Dead Guy Day parade! Catch the Polar Plunge, and some Coffin Racing, and be home in time for a nap. Or to make a giant pile of sushi with Craig and the ladies.
I'm hoping the nice weather will return, because now it's just extra torture... since I could be riding the new bike! Managed to get out for a quick lunchtime ride on Wednesday, and that bike is downright incredible!
Not to bash the Merckx I rode last year, but it was not my favorite bike of all time. The new Ibis is a good 2lbs. lighter, and it rides like it's 10lbs. lighter! Even though the frame is under 900 grams, it's every bit as stiff as the Merckx, but the light weight means it accelerates like no one's business; especially on the climbs. Even more importantly, it avoids that "dead" feeling that you can all-too-often get with carbon bikes, and rides a lot more like a stiff, light-weight aluminum race bike. It's no marshmallowey old-man bike with a taller head tube and gizmos to make it squishy, it rides like a race bike should. No doubt it's ride and perfect tracking is helped by the Edge 2.0 fork! This was the first chance I had to ride an Edge fork, and it's noticeably, very noticeably, stiffer and more "honest" than the "industry standard" carbon fork. Even dropping down the twisties of Flagstaff, the bike was dying to go faster, it just felt that comfortable and sure-footed.
I've spent a season on the first generation SRAM Force drivetrain, and while definitely nice, it always felt like it could have just been a bit better, a bit more accurate. With the newest SRAM Red, any questions of this being an awesome groupo were quickly erased! The shifting is quick, and nicely "mechanical". And even though we're using a Force front derailleur, the new Red cranks make the front shifting WAY better. Really the only other new bit I was curious about was the TRP brakes; while they aren't the lightest of lightweight brakes available (in fact they're the "heaviest of lightweight brakes") they are the first ones that easily had me comparing them to the Dura Ace standard!
Okay... enough sounding like a magazine article... all I left out was "laterally stiff yet vertically compliant". And I may come across as biased, since they're all parts generously provided by our sponsors; once I have a few measurements tweaked slightly, I have the feeling that this bike is going to spoil the shit out of me.