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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    Looking at all the love there that's sleeping
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    DH Wants to race!

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    Hey all.
    DH asked me a curious question today.
    He basically wanted my permission to buy a Lemond he's been looking at so he can start racing. (Yes he just bought a fancy custom Seven, but he doesn't want to risk crashing it - so he wants a bike he can race - and trash - without crying over it.)
    There are a few local races run regularly - small criteriums for the local teams/clubs. He tried one once a few years ago (before we met) and was DNF. He suggested we go and check them out.
    He's pretty fast - and wants to get back up with the hammerheads on the A-ride with our LBS. But some of the guys on the A-ride get so testosterone-fueled during that ride, that a few recently came to blows and the shop owner banned them from the ride. I don't know if I want my honey hanging with that rough crowd!
    Aside from spending money on something we patently do NOT need.....
    I'm a little leery about giving the "okay" to get into racing.
    Yet, I hate to be the nagging wife in the background who doesn't let her husband follow his dream.
    What to do?????
    Any words of advice?
    2007 Seven ID8 - Bontrager InForm
    2003 Klein Palomino - Terry Firefly (?)
    2010 Seven Cafe Racer - Bontrager InForm
    2008 Cervelo P2C - Adamo Prologue Saddle

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    1,764
    Hi Regina,

    I say to support him. Talk to him about your concerns, of course. I think most people know when other people are acting out of line and hopefully he saw that in the hammerheads. I think he is right about getting a bike he can race on that is more "expendable" than the Seven. I know that any bike is an expense but Lemonds are fairly reasonable I think. Maybe, also, talk to some people who race.

    I can only say things from my side because I am the one in the relationship who gets gung-ho to do things. While some of my interests cost more than others, the support of my spouse means SO much. When I started riding more, he got a bike. When I wanted to do a tri, he said it wasn't for him (good thing, this one is women only anyway!) but he would be there to support me. I think had he given me grief, I would have felt resentment and anger.

    Who knows. He might race and enjoy it, he might race and think "ok, this was no better than before". Regardless, he is fulfilling something he wants to try to do. You can do the journey with him and if the worst thing that happens is you have an extra bike, so be it.

    Just me though. I'm sure someone who races might have more insight as to the time commitment and how that would affect home life.

    Has he said why he wants to race? Anyway...good luck. I'm sure you two can talk it over and come to a really fantastic middle ground.

    Jane

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Riding my Luna & Rivendell in the Hudson Valley, NY
    Posts
    8,409
    Yeah, everything Jane said.

    There is no greater feeling than having a partner/spouse who supports you in exploring things (within reason) that make you feel happy or fulfilled. It just makes you want to support their endeavors and dreams all the more in turn.
    Lisa
    Our bikes...OurBikes...and my mountain dulcimer blog
    Ruby's Website and My blog
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Allentown, PA
    Posts
    587
    I'm not married, but I just wanted to throw in the idea of looking for a used Lemond for him to race in if money is a concern. Should be some people upgrading now that spring has arrived, so you might be able to find something that's in good condition for a reasonable price.
    ~ Susie

    "Keep plugging along. The finish line is getting closer with every step. When you see it, you won't remember that you are hurting, that anything has gone wrong, or just how slow or fast you are.
    You will just know that you are going to finish and that was what you set out to do."
    -- Michael Pate, "When Big Boys Tri"

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Blessed to be all over the place!
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    3,434
    You can't repress a competitive drive...he'll either repress the feelings and have them come in other ways or he'll resent the repression...

    If he's not being unsafe and if you can afford the bike, I say go for it.

    If he is being unsafe, you need to discuss your concerns so that he understands (but he'll still likely go for it)

    If you can't afford the bike, then he needs to sacrifice something else to make sure that things stay in balance...this will also assure that it's a true desire and not a whim

    PS: Silver is saying in the background..."Gosh, whenever one of the girls says 'I want a bike that I don't need', the groups says 'Go For It'...so, shouldn't the same standard apply to the guys are supportive of us????" I promise, it's Silver saying that and I'm dictating!!!!!
    Last edited by Mr. Bloom; 04-07-2007 at 07:56 PM.
    If you don't grow where you're planted, you'll never BLOOM - Will Rogers

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Posts
    1,321
    Well, the CatV men's field has the reputation for being the most dangerous, but if he's fast, he can move up quickly right ? Is he going to race unattached or join a local club? Team tactics can really help, and being around wheels you trust help you stay safe.

    As for the new bike, yeah, the general rule is don't race something you can't afford to crash. Though my only wreck so far has been on the stupid MUP. Women's fields are a little less scary and packed I guess...especially the collegiate ones. Then you have to think, would you spend more on the new bike than keeping up the custom one? How much performance is he going to sacrifice with the beater racing bike? This is a risky sport. Some races, CatV crits especially, may have a higher crash risk. But it doesn't seem much worse than those A group rides!

    But really, I don't think racing is more dangerous than riding around District traffic. Especially if he wants to do crits, newbs often just fall off the back and get pulled because for those, recognizing what to do when and where to be in the field has a lot more to do with how you finish than how fit you are--unless you can just go off the front.

    It's kind of late to start this year, but some of the teams around here have skills clinics in the fall/winter and there are practice races in the early spring.

    I think you should support him if he wants to give racing another try. It's fun! Whether he needs another bike to do it is another matter. If it were me, I'd suggest that he do his training on his bike, attend more fast team rides (maybe with a gentler crowd!), some race skills clinics, and then see if he's still scared to race the Seven.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    The Netherlands
    Posts
    206
    I would say, just let him do his thing.

    If you are afraid about the A-group of your lbs then send him to a club to train/ride with the people of the club instead of the LBS. What I learned so far is the guys who race are often more relaxed during training then the guys who do not race. Because the guys who race use training for training and not as a sorry excuse to race eachother.

    And the bike ... I think the suggestion of Offthegrid to look for a second hand for the first year is not a so bad idea. If he still likes to race by the end of the year and wants to do another year then you can look for a new one.
    My new baby for 2007

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Looking at all the love there that's sleeping
    Posts
    4,172
    Thanks all. Great advice - as always!
    DH and I have a general rule - as long as the financial obligations are met, purchases (within reason) are okay. So...no blowing the mortgage payment on toys, and don't stop contributing to the retirement to free up funds for that new Audi TT (ha!).
    Aiabsolut - you make some good, valid, points. DH said he "intends" to move up and out of the danger pack. But he says he's old enough (46) to be racing with the masters - the "guys who have something to lose" - so thinks it might not be as bad as racing with the young 'uns who are full of themselves and trying to show off.
    The A-ride with the LBS is full of racers. I don't think the guy who started the fist fight was, tho'. I think he's just a hot head.
    DH may head over to Greenbelt again (the site of his first attempt at racing) and check out that scene. I told him my concerns and he actually shares them. So, he's got a reasonable head about all this. I also told him it's okay with me if he tries it and suggested we talk to the LBS owner about details.
    We'll see what his level of commitment is to it.
    Thanks all!
    2007 Seven ID8 - Bontrager InForm
    2003 Klein Palomino - Terry Firefly (?)
    2010 Seven Cafe Racer - Bontrager InForm
    2008 Cervelo P2C - Adamo Prologue Saddle

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Suburban MA and Western ME
    Posts
    1,822
    Quote Originally Posted by Regina View Post
    Thanks all. Great advice - as always!
    DH and I have a general rule - as long as the financial obligations are met, purchases (within reason) are okay. So...no blowing the mortgage payment on toys, and don't stop contributing to the retirement to free up funds for that new Audi TT (ha!).
    Aiabsolut - you make some good, valid, points. DH said he "intends" to move up and out of the danger pack. But he says he's old enough (46) to be racing with the masters - the "guys who have something to lose" - so thinks it might not be as bad as racing with the young 'uns who are full of themselves and trying to show off.
    The A-ride with the LBS is full of racers. I don't think the guy who started the fist fight was, tho'. I think he's just a hot head.
    DH may head over to Greenbelt again (the site of his first attempt at racing) and check out that scene. I told him my concerns and he actually shares them. So, he's got a reasonable head about all this. I also told him it's okay with me if he tries it and suggested we talk to the LBS owner about details.
    We'll see what his level of commitment is to it.
    Thanks all!
    A couple of thoughts - to race Masters, your DH first needs to move up to Cat 4 (though that's not too hard to do). Once there, he will find that this group is FAST and the races are HARD - my DH started racing Masters last year, and this group seems to only get better with age .

    Regarding a new bike for racing - why? First, the likelihood that you are actually going to wreck the FRAME is minimal. Most crashes cause damage to components - wheels, brake/shifter levers, handlebars, etc. and these can be just as expensive on a less expensive frame. Last year, DH got caught in a crash the broke his shift lever - that was a $400 fix (the guy that took him down broke his carbon K-Wing handlebars and both levers - much more expensive!). Not sure if you had thought of it from this POV...

    I do agree with the sentiment that if you can't afford to replace it, you shouldn't be racing on it. I heard a story once where a woman was racing on $2000 wheels, got taken down, and was pretty angry and demanded that the woman who caused the crash replace her wheels - sadly for her, that's not the way the racing world works.

    SheFly
    "Well behaved women rarely make history." including me!
    http://twoadventures.blogspot.com

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Looking at all the love there that's sleeping
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    Quote Originally Posted by SheFly View Post
    A couple of thoughts - to race Masters, your DH first needs to move up to Cat 4 (though that's not too hard to do). Once there, he will find that this group is FAST and the races are HARD - my DH started racing Masters last year, and this group seems to only get better with age .

    Regarding a new bike for racing - why? First, the likelihood that you are actually going to wreck the FRAME is minimal. Most crashes cause damage to components - wheels, brake/shifter levers, handlebars, etc. and these can be just as expensive on a less expensive frame. Last year, DH got caught in a crash the broke his shift lever - that was a $400 fix (the guy that took him down broke his carbon K-Wing handlebars and both levers - much more expensive!). Not sure if you had thought of it from this POV...
    Thanks for this. DH and I were at the LBS yesterday, looking at the bike DH was thinking of for this effort and chatting with the shop owner. It was a gorgeous Lemond Buenas Aires built up with Ultegra (and a whole lot more expensive than I thought! ). The owner, while always willing to sell a bike, actually talked DH *out* of buying a bike for this effort. He indicated that, in the unlikely event that something actually happened to the FRAME, the cost of replacing the carbon stays on the ID8 (because you'd have to be run over by a truck to hurt the titanium) would be less than replacing the whole Lemond frame.

    The Greenbelt series starts on May 2nd. I don't know if he'll be ready to race, but perhaps we'll go watch the first few......
    2007 Seven ID8 - Bontrager InForm
    2003 Klein Palomino - Terry Firefly (?)
    2010 Seven Cafe Racer - Bontrager InForm
    2008 Cervelo P2C - Adamo Prologue Saddle

 

 

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