it has been a long winter and an even longer spring with rain coming down in record amounts in may and april. the garden next to the shop is overflowing with veggies, the rain barrels are all full to the brim and the fenders are still on and being used a couple of days of the week when i get a chance to ride. some days feel longer than others but i have had a chance to read and have espresso a little more often since the weather makes riding bikes less enjoyable. while years ago i would have been out all winter doing centuries in the dark to train for some long slog of a race or in hopes that i might win a banana belt race, this year i have been building and focusing on the business so other people can have those same adventures on the bicycles that i have built for them.

already this year i have tallied up some events that have seen an ira ryan bicycle (or two) leading the field. g. steve pickle from iowa city have been campaigning his bike over the finish line of a handful of races this spring including a win at the kent park (spring) classic outside of iowa city. while he is “officially” sponsored by 30th century bicycle, i like to think that ira ryan cycles is a sponsor of sorts. pickle just finished 13th in the dirty kanza and had a chance to chat with joe fox who also owns a bicycle shop in kansas city. i built a trans-iowa style gravel racer that joe rode to 3rd place on in this years dirty kanza. way to go joe!

aside from the midwest gravel race scene, the pink 29r i built for heather dawe in england is on the ground and rolling south from banf montana along the spine of the continental divide. the frame still felt hot as i packed it up and shipped it to her in time for a couple of rides before she lined up at the canadian border to start her epic adventure south to mexico. her exploits and adventures can be seen on her blog. i am happy to say that i have built a bike that has been raced in the raam event from west to east and now to have built a mountian bike that will be racing from north to south. i am excited to think of all the places those tires will have touched.

while i am building bikes i am happy to have taken a little time to flash back to my own trans-iowa adventures through the book that local portland writer  zach dundas has recently written about un-sanctioned and fringe sports called renegade sportsman. he drove along with the trans-iowa event  a couple of years ago and recounted the events that saw me win the event for the second time. i am not one to brag or toot my own horn about racing (or anything for that matter) but the chapter about that 25 hours of gravel racing took me back for an enjoyable retelling through a different perspective. renegade sportsman also captures a lot of the sub, sub, sub-sects of sporting culture in portland that make it a good place for people who enjoy weird sporting lifestyles.


2 Responses to “endurance.”

  1. bikeiowa Says:

    Weird? Word.

    Have no fear, the Ira Ryan bicycle currently resting one room to the West of me with one wheel and two bottle cages missing will be back in the racing mix soon, and will be my long distance gravel bike of choice by the next DK 200.

    Which you should come do, by the way, because it is a great race.

  2. Joe Fox Says:

    i second you coming out for DK. it truly is a great race.
    once again, the bike has served me well, i guess i should go for broke next year. if only I could get the best of TI instead of the other way around.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: