Texas Loggerhead

One of our Tales From The Peloton correpsondents sat down with Jacob yesterday to discuss one of the more interesting members of his cycling team...

TFTP: "So what's the story behind the Texas Loggerhead?"

Jacob: "Well, a few years ago, in the wee hours of the morning, one of the treasurers at Texas Cycling was set to order some letterhead for the team. But in a coffee induced stupor, she accidentaly adopted a loggerhead turtle off the coast of Hawaii. We named him Yurtle."

TFTP: "Now, in this press photo, Yurtle appears to be wearing a helmet, is there a story behind this?"

Jacob: "Hahaha, it's a long one, but sure. Well, so here was Texas Cyling with an adopted turtle, so we decided to outfit him in our entire team kit. We worked closely with Hincapie and his lyrca spinning weevils of Southern Madagascar to develop a material uniquely suited to Yurtles needs. The results were actually astounding. I'll put it this way, they contemplated banning the LZR, well they definately would've banned this suit. Yurtle was flying. And not just the physical benefits, but the psychological ones too. A local I was chatting with the other day told me that Yurtle had been seen hunting sharks in his Texas Cycling kit. But unfortunately for the other turtles, Yurtle was the only one 'getting any play' as I believed it was explained to me. So, we had to have his suit taken away, but the helmet remained. It doesn't enhance performance like the kit does, it just keeps his noggin' safe."

TFTP: "Fascinating. And so how is Yurtle these days?"

Jacob: "Oh, I snorkeled with him yesterday and he's doing outstanding. He's not as young as he was three years ago, but what he's able to do at this age is tremendous, and we're really happy to have him flying the Texas Cycling banner way down here."

TFTP: "Well, it is really a great thing you all are doing here, any plans to adopt any other animals in the future?"

Jacob: "Well, I'm afraid I can't spill too much yet, but I do believe we are making contacts with nomads on the Siberian steppes to pursue just such an option. I'm sure we'll hear more about it later."

TFTP: "Well, as always, it's been a pleasure."

Jacob: "Thank you, and have a good one."

This Just In!

Jacob is here seen on a routine training ride in Hawai'i

"Naturally, the key to cycling on lava is not to fall and become consumed by flames. What a lot of people don’t do properly is deflate their tires to 20-30 psi, with the trick here being that when you begin cycling on the lava, the heat will cause the air to expand. Running slicks, while doable, isn’t preferable for cycling on these conditions; I much prefer to run some cross tires that I used in the fall. There may be some downsides, but I have never had a problem with pinch flats. I cannot wait to see how the bike handling learned here will translate to future endeavors. "

Deja Vu...

At the Texas State skill based crit, Jacob finds himself along his buddy from summer camp last year - Damiano Cunego…

Damiano: So Jacob, are you doping free?
Jacob: Yes, yes I am.
Damiano: Here, have a leftover holiday themed sticker.

Jacob: Oh, he’s a cute little guy.
Damiano: So he is. But let’s get down to business. How are we going to destroy this race today?
Jacob: Well, I was planning on taking a flyer with one lap to go, that seems to be about how long I can hold those things.
Damiano: Interesting idea.
Jacob: I don’t think the sprint benefits me, but if I can be in a strong position beforehand, I hopefully won’t be passed by too many people.
Damiano: Well, I think it will be successful. I think we can win this race.
Jacob: Yes we can!

25 minutes later...

It's a bird, it's a plane, it's a flyer!

Jacob: Philippe Gilbert, Nikolas Vogondy, Sylvain Chavanel!
Philippe: Ah, Jacob, how nice to see you.
Jacob: What brings ya’ll to Texas?
Slyvain: The GS Tenzing Crit of course.
Nikolas: It seems so ripe for a flyer, we just couldn’t resist.
Jacob: Flyer hmmmm…might be worth my while.
Philippe: Oh, it’s always worth it. It’s ballsy, it looks good, and occasionally it just might work.
Jacob: Hmmm…just might work.
Slyvain: We were planning on one later, perhaps you would like to join?
Jacob: This might be possible.

The race proceeds somewhat uninterestingly, primes are tossed about, but none come Jacob’s way. A water bottle that was tossed takes an awkward bounce and flies back into the peloton, and a minivan got on the course, but other than that it was a pretty relaxing hour, with Slyvain showing photos of his latest vacation to Mont Saint-Michel.

Slyvain: And then, a couple hours later, it was an island again!
Nikolas: Fascinating! And it does this everday?
Slyvain: Yes! It’s the current of the ocean, it makes the place so very defensible.
Philippe: Incredible, Jacob, have you ever heard such things?
Jacob: Indeed I have, but witnessed it, I have not.
Slyvain: Oh, you should be sure to visit sometime.
Jacob: I’m actually going to Hawai’i in a few days.
Philippe: Oh, how interesting!
Jacob: I’ll be biking and swimming and sundry other activities.
Nikolas: Oh, that sounds grand!
Slyvain: He guys, it’s almost time for a flyer.
Philippe: Just a few laps left? I’m more of a 50k flyer type of guy myself, but if everyone’s doing it I guess I might as well…
Nikolas: Oh, join it’ll be fun. Jacob, you coming?

Jacob: Hmm…only two laps left, eh, it just be able to work…
Slyvain: Bonne, off we go!

And like the three musketeers of old, except with an American and a Belgian amidst them, and four instead of three, they attacked.

Slyvain: Quite the gap we’ve got!

Jacob: Yes, but here’s two riders bridging.
Nikolas: Just over one lap to go.
Philippe: We can work with the other two maybe?
Jacob: No good, one dropped off and I can’t quite match the acceleration of the other.
Nikolas: Just this right turn to start the last lap and…
Slyvain: The wind!

Philippe: Ah! It blows us to pieces!
Nikolas: Mon dieu!
Slyvain: C’est terrible!
Philippe: Oh, what catastrophe!
Jacob: Gah! We’ve been overtaken, and can’t accelerate
Nikolas: Waaaaaah!

Philippe: Where’d Nikolas go?
Slyvain: The wind has taken him!
Philippe: Oh, poor soul!

The lamentations continued. Though full of typical Jacobean dash and bravado, ultimately the move was not successful. In hindsight, tactically it just wasn’t too smart.


Phoneathon Vaughters

Jacob: Hello?

JV: Jacob, it’s Jonathan Vaughters.
Jacob: Hey, JV, what’s going on?
JV: Not much man, how are you?
Jacob: Out racing the Driveway actually.
JV: Yeah, that’s why I called. Time for me to step in as your DS.
Jacob: On my cell phone?
JV: They don’t allow radios.
Jacob: Yeah, but-
JV: Hey, get in this early break.
Jacob: But it won’t stick.
JV: We need the TV time.
Jacob: Who’s we?
JV: Bridge damnit!
Jacob: Alright, alright, I’m here.
JV: Now pull.

Jacob: I just got here!
JV: Revenue! Advertising!
Jacob: I’m pulling, I’m pulling. And we’re caught.
JV: Good work.
Jacob: Am I done for the day?
JV: You wish. Just sit in the back for now, keep an eye on things there.
Jacob: But the Silence-Lotto guys look at me funny.
JV: Don’t worry about them.
Jacob: So, I’m done for a bit?
JV: Yeah.
Jacob: Should I hang up?
JV: Well, I’m going to call you again in about 10 minutes or so.
Jacob: My phones on vibrate, I might not here it.
JV: Yeah, I’ll have important things to say then, so let’s stay on the line.

Jacob: So how’s the family?
JV: Doing pretty good. They’re in Italy for the Giro.
Jacob: Shouldn’t you be in Italy?
JV: I was this morning.
Jacob: Oh.

JV: So how’s the girlfriend?
Jacob: What girlfriend?
JV: Oh. Yeah. So you’re an English major?
Jacob: Yeah.
JV: How’s that going?
Jacob: Pretty good, got one more year to go, shouldn’t be too bad.
JV: Uhuh, that’s great. Hey, it’s the last lap, time to get back in the race.
Jacob: You couldn’t have told me this a couple laps ago?
JV: No. Your flyer off the front will get more TV time if the last they saw of you you were on the back.
Jacob: Off the front?
JV: Yeah, you’ll lead our Farrar.
Jacob: Ty’s here? I haven’t seen him…
JV: He’s in disguise, now get off the front!

JV: Hold, hold!
Jacob: Too. Soon. For. Sprint! Can’t. Heart. Rate. 205! Can’t. Keep. Arrgh!
JV: There, done. Next time, we’ll work on not getting passed by 9 people. Good job though.

Euskaltel Monotony

Armed with a cadre of intrepid teammates, the ever-vigilant Jacob headed southwards to do battle with the best that San Antonio had to offer…things would go rather boringly from there. Fortunately though, he had Inaki Isasi and Sammy Sanchez to keep him company…

Jacob: So Inaki, what’s it like being a sprinter in the Pro Peloton?
Inaki: Pretty nice. I’m not like whiny other sprinters who can’t go uphill to save their lives, so on hard days I hang out with the grupetto, and on sprint days I fight for wheels. It’d be nice if I could ever get a lead out…
Sammy: Oh yeah, because Sammy Sanchez can lead people out.
Inaki: Yeah, it’s not like he sprints to first in the Olympics…
Sammy: Sammy knows how to go uphill, that’s about it.

Jacob: Must be somewhat frustrating to not do much in a race and then not gain a result.
Sammy: Sammy doesn’t know what that feels like.
Inaki: It’s not so bad really.
Jacob: Really? Because for me it sucks.
Inaki: Well for me, I still get paid.
Jacob: A low blow…
Sammy: Sammy only dishes out blows on the hills. Sammy’s gonna change the subject.
Jacob: You didn’t change the subject, you just sorta ended it…
Sammy: Oh, didn’t I, didn’t I?
Jacob & Inaki: Oh Sammy, hahaha

Inaki: Don’t you have a rider up the road?
Jacob: Do I? Huh, never noticed.
Inaki: I don’t often know what it feels like myself…
Sammy: Hard to counter if you don’t even know he’s being reeled in.
Inaki: So much for ever-vigilant.
Jacob: Yeah, well, I must’ve got distracted.
Inaki: There goes another teammate of yours.
Jacob: Maybe I’ll counter after he gets reeled in.
Sammy: Maybe you won’t and will just sit in waiting for things to end but won’t have to legs or nuts to really do anything towards the end and you won’t get a good placing at all.

Too true Sammy, too true…


Cheap Talk

With a vigilant eye on these hard economic times, Jacob knew that talk was cheap. So, entering both the 3/4 and the 4/5 races at the Driveway, Jacob decided to let his legs do all the talking...

Having thusly been dissapointed by all his lower body except his right calf, Jacob decided to investigate these cupcakes he had heard so much about...


My God, Where is the Peloton?

Our Tales from the Peloton! correspondent, Giraud LeBlanc caught up with rider Jacob Dodgsen after the Sugarland Criterium in Houston, Texas. Jacob was coming off a disappointing sprint in Coldspring and found himself unable to catch onto the lead group in the Sugarland 4/5s.

TFTP: Jacob, can you assess in your own words how you felt about your results this weekend?

Jacob: Well, it was pretty disappointing really, I know that I’m in good form, but I just lacked the kick yesterday. Today though, I just wasn’t aggressive enough early on to get myself in the top group of racers. Our chase group worked together well, but we just didn’t have enough to chase them down.

TFTP: Would you say you’re disappointed by these results?

Jacob: Yes, that's what I just said.

TFTP: We’re also curious as to the big elephant in the room that no-one is talking about, the return of French time trial specialist Christophe CollĂ­ns.

Jacob: Well, I rode with Christophe a few days ago and he seemed to be in good spirits. He’s been off the bike a while so he’s got some catching up to do, but hopefully we’ll seem out there being competitive again here shortly.

TFTP: So, what are your post-race plans?

Jacob: Currently, I’m none too pleased, so I intend to head out early, drive back to Austin and play some Halo. Shoot some people in the face, that sort’ve thing.

TFTP: Well, I guess then that answers my next question about you and Maria Sharapova.

Jacob: What are you saying?

TFTP: Uh, just that getting angry about sucking in a race and then releasing that anger by playing violent video games is a typically single male thing to do.

Jacob: And how do you release your stress huh? Parade around the Champs-Elysee drinking fine wine until you forget your miseries? Shopping in your effeminate high end retailers? Gambling in Monaco? Being a creep at a nude beach? You little swine, you-

TFTP: Mr. Dodgsen, please contain yourself. Such anger after sucking it up in a race is normal.

Jacob: Suck? You cowardly pissant! You don’t know a thing do you! You don’t tell me how I did, you sniveling little ingrate, I swear-

TFTP: Mr. Dodgsen, contain yourself!

Jacob: You listen here LeBlanc! I’m sick of you reporter types. All up in my face? How’d you Jacob? How’d you do? I’ll tell you Jacob, you sucked! And you play video games to relieve stress, just all the other single American slobs! Why not eat some cake to go with it? Well maybe I will! You piss me off! Question this, assume that! Ask ask ask ask, blah blah blah blah-

TFTP: So I take it you don’t want to share your thoughts on Simeoni returning the Italian Champions jersey?


Coldspring Clash!

After a four hour drive of mild epicness, Jacob arrived at scenic Coldspring Texas, ready to tackle the Cat 4 peloton, and perhaps buy some tackle and go fishing later…

Frank: Greetings Jacob, it us, Andy and Frank
Andy: We the two jolly brothers of team Saxo Bank.

Jacob: Uh…hi, how ya’ll doing?
Frank: We’re doing pretty well
Andy: We think the environment here is right swell.
Jacob: Yeah, it’s nice to see actual trees and a forest and things.
Frank: Indeed, not much like the rest of Texas
Andy: A nice retreat from the farmland that so vex’s us.

Jacob: So, I gotta ask, do you two always rhyme?
Frank: Indeed we do, it keeps our minds a-thinking
Andy: And Bjarne Riis finds it amusing after post-race drinking.
Jacob: Interesting.
Frank: Look, here be the finish climb
Andy: Uh, uh. Get out of the saddle to show off your behind.
Jacob: Oh, if you insist.

Show off his behind he did. But the hard pace he put out wasn’t enough to cause any breaks in the field.

Frank: An unfortunate thing, that you are not strong enough to cause a split
Andy: And as well that you on your saddle now sit.

Jacob: I had no idea that you two were this weird.
Frank: We keep our peculiarities under wraps.
Andy: You don’t even know about our penchant for rap.
Jacob: That’s pretty much the same word, it shouldn’t count.
Frank: Yes, Andy is perhaps not the best, he’s not so old.
Andy: Oh, piss off, at least I didn’t crash at Amstel Gold.
Frank: Yeah, well at last year’s final TT in the Tour at least I didn’t fold.
Andy: When I saw you fly off the road in the Tour de Suisse I really lol’d.
Jacob: Woah, guys. Save it for the streets of Luxembourg.

Frank: You are right, let’s put this pettiness behind us.
Andy: Yes, brother I think that we must.
Jacob: Care to dispense with the rhyming as well?
Frank: No way.
Andy: Jose.
Jacob: Alright then.
Frank: Look, here comes the finishing sprint.
Andy: Yes, we’ll have to do it very quick. Damn.

Fearing that perhaps they would start rhyming again, Jacob let them go in the uphill sprint.