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Jeff's Best Days of Sports

January 02, 2005

I thought I'd brag up my sporting days, so I don't forget them.

Over 20 wins, 50 top finishes, 50 top-expert performances and quality achievements
in: XC skiing (classic and skate), road cycling, mt-biking, velodrome, telemarking,
snowboarding, triathlon, quadrathalon, adventure races, canoe, kayak, speed
skating, inline skating, hiking, archery, marksmanship, running, crew, road-tripping,
sailing, hitch-hiking, and all-round epic workouts.

My claim to fame in sports is that I did good at a wide range of
them. Also, I could've been called the underdog of every event I did. I
was self-taught at all of them. Even so I helped others improve in
every sport I did and was known as a savvy, stylish competitor. Also, I
only did sports as an adult. You could say that a big thing is that all
my sports were underpowered, underequiped, undertrained and undercoached.

A funny thing is that I forget lots of wins, top finishes and whole
events. Whenever I look thru old boxes I keep finding clips for events that
I did good at that I had forgotten.

Sadly, now that I've quit racing, I've gotten some worldclass XC coaching
and I ski a lot better. I do most sports a lot better now, and often use
proper equipment. (Ha, and I still often use rusty, crusty stuff, too.)

My advice is, as they say, to teach your children well--or they'll have
to learn it all on their own and screw up for a long time. And if sport
means anything to you, try not to use crappy equipment.

Here's my "mugsheet"
of sports photos of yours truly.

And, now, here's a list of event details:

Starting with Bike Racing...

75 crits and races of various types, placing top 10 in 40 of them

1st, Boulder Roubaix bike race in 1987, solo break, which I predicted
to the pack during race, asking if anyone wanted to go with me

1st, Grattan 5-event points day

1st, Cat 4 crit (at least once), lots of Citizen wins

9th, Cat 2 crit, field sprint (last race)

40 km TT in 56 min---ave. 27 mph, no aero gear

5th, Madison track race, first one with Tim Feldkamp

3 national-class mtb races as NORBA Expert (incl Natls) without any mtb
training, top 20 finishes

Last year, stayed with lead group in Cat 5 33-mi very hilly Kensington
bike race with no training

Recently lapped an all-cats field in a crit with a lowracer recumbent,
first time riding it, no training

Recently rode fullfaired HPV for 31 miles in an Hour race on hilly/twisty
course at Waterford (3rd place in each of 3 Waterford HPV faired Hour roadraces)

Climbed Grossglockner mountain pass, ranked world's hardest (Austria)
in 2 hrs, pro's take 1:45

Rode Hardscrabble 100 century in Colo with straightblock gearing (42x18),
with fastest group, with a 25 mile steep climb against strong wind which
had many walking, coming straight from Michigan

Did a 5-day stage race, contending every day, 13th overall

Big road race over two 11k-ft mt passes straight from Mich.--Iron Horse

1st race set course record at age 18, Mackinaw Island

Many 2nds and some 1sts in Boulder points races, with big last-lap comebacks
as feature

Did good without training in 40degF heavy-rain race in Ann Arbor in last
year of racing

Colo training race breakaway and win over big steep hill, using big ring

Dropping entire snotty club except for natl team rider in first big canyon
climb of year

Many 50-mi Thurs training race rides in AA, in 90degF, 90% humidity,
average 24mph, finish top 5 most times

Club rides in last year of sport cycling---several sprint wins and good
riding despite no training (28 mph pulls with rack and fenders)

6 rides in one day, 9 hrs on the bike with different groups

Rode grocery bike in 40-mile club training race with Cat2's

Mack Isl to East Lansing in 1.5 days (250 miles) to come home after first
summer of riding

80 miles in 3 hrs from Okemos to Grand Rapids, in heavy rain and wind

120 mi day, EL to AA and back

85 mile mt day at Uncle Tim's thru rain and snow, until snow forced a

Ride MTB across LA in 2 hrs (Long Beach to Hollywood, with lots of whitelining)



XC Ski racing, triathlons, ultrathons, paddling...

9th overall last Mich Cup season of XC racing (mostly 1st in age group
and top 10 overall in all races)

3 successful XC marathons in one season--2nd place in Birkie Wave 2,
all under 2:20

2nd place in two XC races

Age group wins in 20+ XC races, top 5 in 20 races, top 20 in 50 races

3 wins in biathlon, once in a skate race while classicking

2nd place classic White Pine despite many stops for rewaxing

3 wins in 3 wks in canoe tri's, then a 2nd

Top ten in Mt Man (7th) and PPP (4th) ski-tri events 4-6 hrs long without
much training

1:42 half famous marathon trail run---20th or so

Recently, a superfun 4-Day Up North Blast---with all day 25-mi Hike,
all day River Paddle, all day Bike and open water Kayak plus Grand Hotel
Dinner and camping out most nights solo

hardcore canoe and kayak flatwater race training for up to 3 hours at
a time with worldclass paddlers, for a few years

40 pushups, 50 situps, 15 chinups, 23 dips, nearly destroy Nordic Trak
on steepest/hardest settings---calesthenics personal record

9 hrs training in 3 sports in one day (my one outing for distance training
for the Mt Man Tri)

Worked as busboy all night, drove up and skied a fast 50k marathon, drove
back in crazy snowstorm then worked all night again. "Helper"
friends slept all the way.

Surviving 1st Super Giant Slalom at Jackson Hole, 3 miles long, 208cm
SG race skis

Fastest wax one day at Sylvan Sprints

Some great bumps telemarking in the big mts, made chairlifts cheer

Some extreme spring XC trail rock ice skiing with pals in Breck on Frickenridge

Skinny dipping for tri swim training

Learning how to swim fast---then crossing the Danube river daily and
a couple times across Lake Lansing (one mile open water swims)

Speedskating down the frozen Red Cedar for 5 miles



Shooting sports...shotguns, rifles, pistols, archery...

24 out of 25 for skeet

a dozen wins in junior archery matches

shooting archery for 3 hours without putting more than 2 arrows outside
a 10" ring at 25 yards

shooting many dozen-arrow groups at 25 yards where all the arrows touched
each other in the bull

shooting 14 .22 rifle shots in under one minute at 100 yards, standing,
into a 8" bullseye, ironsights

86/100 .22 standing pistol score at 25 yards

90/100 10 shots rapidfire M1 Garand 200 yards sitting, 30 seconds, 10"
bull, peeps




Riding motorcycle all day, plus 2 hours in snowstorm with deep slush,
in Colorado

Riding Honda 175 motorcycle 18 hours to NY

Driving over 30 hrs straight, twice---many nonstop 19 hour drives

In 1983, From Mich, take train to NYC, then fly to Europe, bicycle for
a month, then plane and train home again, for $600 total....last day: a
banana, pint of milk and $1 left

3 weeks hitch-hiking around the NW, mostly Montana, sleeping in open
air, meeting amazing people, almost hopped wrong train, including 1 week
hike into Gallatin Mts, seeing bears, bagging summits, living on PBJ, hiked
down 15 fast miles one morning then hitched until 3 a.m.--that was a big
day, slept on picnic table in snow, hitched with great luck all during college

3 weeks, 10,000 miles driving around most of US visiting people with
Martha, 1991, in Jetta, no motels


More recently...

Got pretty good at hardcore tennis

Heavy bag thai kickbox training for five 3-min rounds

Survived no-holds-barred martial arts class with younger toughs

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