Tag Archives: Amanda Bye
Who knew zombies could ride so quickly? Here’s Amanda B.‘s race report, zombie style.
Put the best things together and what do you get? Zombie Cross. This is a cyclocross race with winding trees, a spooky covered bridge, the ‘run up from hell’, great cheering, good food, delicious adult beverages and costumes. There was a wide range of costumes from a swarm of bees (MBs creative bent as a Zom Bee) to a roller derby king who wore rollerskates the entire race. There were handups of bacon, marshmallows, twinkies, candy, adult beverages and a banana giving a banana a banana handup (can’t follow that, see the picture). The course was well done complete with hills, trees, off camber turns and sand.
The Naked Women came out in full force dressed exemplary for the occasion. Emily Zombie Zinn (thank you for that nickname Larry Grossman) and I arrived 3 hours early for our race in order to ensure that we had enough time to do our “makeup”. We had a good warm up and took lots of pictures with the other ladies who decided to dress up for this race as well. The race started fast into a gravel corner, I had a good start, kept my position for the first two laps and then started feeling as though my tire pressure was going low. By the next lap, I was rolling the tire every turn and falling much more than is ever needed. I could feel every little pebble under my tire as it hit the rim of my wheel. Worried about my wheels and tires and being very frustrated with falling. I decided to get off my bike and run it in. There is no excuse to DNF, well unless you have a bone sticking out. So, I ran from where the announcer was located on a gravel flat, to an off camber s-turn, down a steep hill (much easier on a bike), up a hill and to the finish. Then proceeded to want to vomit as there is no need to run, unless being chased by a bear or some other ferocious animal. The cheering throughout the race was once again amazing. This wasn’t my best race but was one of the most memorable and I did win best costume. The other Naked ladies represented the team very well with strong finishes in SW Open, SW 3s and SW 4s. Thank you to Frites en Mayo and Happy Coffee/Salvagetti for putting on another stellar race. Thank you to the ColoRADo racers for keeping cross funky and not taking ourselves too serious. Special shout out to the people who came to cheer and didn’t even race and to Zombie Zinn for doing my makeup and getting up extra early because I wanted to.
Photos and video by Mary Topping with Pro Velo Passion
The racing has begun for our Naked Dairylanders. Here is Amanda 1.0 account of the 3/4 race.
If you want to go to an out-of-state race, first rule is to not go with me if you want to have a good time. Both out-of-state races had a similar day 1- torrential downpours, lightening and tornado warnings. Pre-riding in the rain was chilly and wet. Realizing that your soggy chamois is no longer comfortable on “Chafin Road” while warming up should have sealed the deal of not participating in this race but we drove 1,200 miles and there was no turning back. We roll up for staging with ten minutes until the beginning of the race, we are all warmed up and ready to start, then over the loud speaker the voice exclaims that, “Race is delayed. Everyone take cover.” We return to the car to stay protected from the rain, to eat chocolate and to cool down.
Day 2 of the Toad Cross Country Road Trip Team. Will they ever make it to Wisconsin? Here is Tami‘s report from hours 8-17 in the car.
Fueled by free hotel breakfast fake eggs, sausage and fresh but not so fabulous coffee, the four of us hit the road for day 2 of the dairyland adventure.
Jamie, Noodles (Tami), Amanda 1.0, and Amanda 2.0 have set out to try to cut the cheese at Tour of Americas Dairyland. With their Garmin’s turned on to crush some Strava segments and chamois cream flowing here is their journey.
“I need to drink now so I have time to sober up to drive later” said 1.0 as we pulled out of her driveway at 6 last night. The car was loaded to capacity and already the good times started flowing.
Jamie took the first shift of what has become the drive across no mans land. Big kudos to the men and women cyclist who ride the oh so long, oh so flat, and oh so boring roads of Eastern Colorado, Nebraska, and Iowa. Jamie decided to take a monster pull and took us from Denver all through the night to our first resting place.
Our first squabble came over what audio book to listen to late last night. ”50 Shades of Grey” was the initial favorite but Noodles (Tami) vetoed it since she had already read it many times. We decided on “Bossypants” by Tina Fey and immediately decided she should join Naked because she gets us.
As the schlep through the night kept on and on and on and on and on not a lot really happened other than almost hitting a deer, Tami and Amanda 1.0 having a picnic in the back floorboard, Tami eating ground food in honor of Mama Joan, Amanda 1.0 passing out first (wine induced), Amanda 2.0 stressing about the quality of gas station food, and Jamie trying to lay on a pillow while driving. It was a LONG night. Whose idea was this?
We finally pulled into our hotel at 3:30am with alarms set for 7:30. We hit the door with just enough time to brush teeth, change out of chamois, and spoon with your bed mate for a quickie.
Thursday we tackle the final leg of the trip that just won’t quite. We are updating twitter via @wineandoreos with 140 characters worth of pics, tips, and wit. Stay tuned.
This needs no description, only a pull quote from the below: ”People have asked if I was disappointed with the race. My response was, “Not at all. I learned that the best part of racing is having teammates who truly care more about how the team does than themselves. This was never more apparent to me than today.” Here’s Amanda 1.0′s story.
NOTE: Photos by Shawn Curry
Most people have the one race that they want to do well in during the season. My race this year fell on Cinco de Mayo and was the legandary Koppenberg, which is another stellar race put on by Without Limits Productions. It is a road race consisting of a 5 mile circuit of which half the lap is dirt, with a brutal 17% grade dirt, two track ‘berg’ (hill) and a fast pavement descent. The Cat 4 Naked women always have a pre-planned race strategy, but execution is always the tough part. That day the plan was for my teammates, who are either cyclo-cross racers or bad ass power houses, to get the hole shot with me and then to tow me to the finish line. I was to sit in as much as possible. Early on I started to inch up to the front and 2.0 motioned for me to sit on her wheel, no words had to be spoken as we both knew that I needed to conserve energy. Apparently, we were not the only women that morning with a plan. Two strong riders attacked from the start. I tried with the help of my teammate, Brittany Jones, to stay with them but alas I could not hold the pace and I told her to go catch them. 2.0 worked hard to catch me on the descent and then to pull me the entire downhill portion and back onto the dirt.
Two laps of the same pattern, working very hard on the dirt and hills and then being pulled half the lap by 2.0 and Amy Thompson. Third and final lap, this is it and I am sitting well in what I thought was 8th place. I am pushing with everything that I have and feel like I am going to vomit, then my front tire starts to bump around more than usual. No way did I puncture. Within one more pedal stroke, it is completely flat. 2.0 is there within a few seconds and asks what happened. I let her know that I flatted and for her to continue going. Without a moment of hesitation, she does the unthinkable, brakes and tells me in a firm voice to take my front wheel off. I don’t even have a second to respond and she has placed her wheel on my bike, tells me to take a deep breath, pushes me to start up the hill and says, “Go get them. This is YOUR race.” The remainder of the race I push to the limits of my heart rate and come in 7th place. Brittany got 2nd place and both Emily and 2.0, among many others, did not finish due to flat tires. 2.0 did have a tube and fixed my flat but then got another one. People have asked if I was disappointed with the race. My response was, “Not at all. I learned that the best part of racing is having teammates who truly care more about how the team does than themselves. This was never more apparent to me than today.”
I am ashamed to say that I would never have thought in that high-intensity moment to give a teammate a wheel but 2.0 gave up her spot in the race for me and did so without a moment’s hesitation. My other teammates worked very hard to put me in a good position and for that I am grateful. The teamwork is more important to me than what place I ended up in, what category I race or how my fitness and training are going. This will forever be a moment that I remember and cherish but please don’t tell 2.0. She does not read my race reports and I don’t want her to know how important she is to the team.
PS – all was not lost, my placing did get me an upgrade point towards becoming a Cat 3, here I come ladies.
Amanda 1.0 can’t stay out of the dirt. The cyclocrosser took to Weld County to work with our other cat 4s to secure a podium spot. Naked Women’s Racing would like to send warm, healing thoughts to all of those women who were affected by the crash.
This road race had a little bit of everything with both dirt and pavement sections. The one-mile of packed down dirt had a good line to the right. However, the remainder of the dirt path would jar your upper body, bounce around your smooth pedal stroke and toss waterbottles right out of their once secure cages and into other riders. Hence the neutral area led by a pace motorcycle was welcomed by many riders, although the cyclocross riders were a little disappointed since dirt is what we ride best and thus is a slight advantage for us. After the dirt, there was a right hand turn and then the remaining 12 miles was pavement with a few well-marked potholes and corrugated cattle guards. The neutral start came to an end a few hundred feet onto the asphalt. The previous chatty cat 4s, got into their drops and quickened the pace. Everyone was getting into a good drafting position when the unmistakable sound of beautifully designed machines clamoring into each other and fellow racers going down with them was heard. This split the pack. Worried about our cyclist friends who had crashed and hoping that everything was okay, we continued on the course. Some women in the front of the pack did not hear the crash occur. The race had dwindled from 39 people starting to the lead group of 15 women working together and I will proudly say communicating well. We were like a flock of birds trying to stay guarded from the wind and of course Amanda 2.0 AKA Goose was our fearless leader in the front making a flying V formation and keeping her teammates (and others) out of the wind.
Team tactics had been discussed prior to the race but we were also in contact during the race to ensure there were no changes. 2.0 would gently remind me to draft when my urge-to-surge would kick in. We completed the first lap and then turned back onto the dirt once again, this seemed to go better the second time. Four miles to the finish, a racer attacked. 2.0 had been pulling for almost the entire race and our other teammate was strong at hills and thus was a more likely candidate to do well at the end of the race, so I chased the racer. I was several feet away from her when I felt like I had nothing left. How could I get so close to bridging the gap and then give up now but I had nothing left? That is when Shelley Hartman saved the day. She was on my wheel, came around and proceeded to bridge the remainder of the gap. The pace picked up as we were nearing the end of the race.
This is such a supportive and amazing group of riders. As we approached the finish, you could hear people cheering for each other, 2.0 telling me that I could keep going (even though my body vehemently disagreed with her) and Breeze Brown from Primal Women’s Racing pulling me back into the group after I started to yo-yo off the back. I did get dropped with 1K to go but it did not matter. The most important part of racing is having fun and being with other supportive women. The win does not build as many memories as the camaraderie and connection between these women. That being stated, our teammate Brittany Jones did get 3rd place that day and congrats to her for racing smart and sticking with our plan.
Added bonus to this race report our 2.0s quotes of the day:
1. “If you want your race numbers (there were two) to fit, eat a sandwich.”
2. As we were all climbing the last section of the race, “Every climber that I beat up this hill, owes me a beer.”
3. Very end of the race, “Shut up legs.” This got a mid breath chuckle from many riders and someone later stated that they thought, “Yeah legs SHUT UP.”
We just had our team camp and had 20+ Race and Club team ladies come from all over Colorado to convene in Moab, Utah during the Skinny Tire Festival (great item Roberta won at the BRAC Road Awards Party). We played in the dirt, road through state and national parks, national monuments, and drank a little too much wine. Here’s a very brief recap from the twins but more to follow of our team camp.
As kids we went to camp to get away, stay up late, eat food our parents would never give us, and not shower. As adults camp is actually very similar. The Amandas packed all our chamois, a couple extra bottles of wine, and headed West to Camp Naked Moab with 18 of our fellow teammies.
Here are 10 things we learned from Camp Naked Moab:
- Berta “The Basa$$” will teach you everything from paceling to Peace Corp Popcorn
- Even though everyone might like the twins, not everyone considers the best part of waking up is overly excited Amandas chitty chatty loudly.
- Your legs aren’t the only things that need to shut up; butt, thighs, feet, Helga, etc…
- The scenery always makes up for the elevation gain… ALWAYS.
- Riding with your teammies in crumy weather is way better than riding indoors & alone…period.
- Real team bonding happens at a winery.. chocolate, cheese, and wine are great for recovery!
- There are no deer in Utah!
- Jumping fences is only legal when there are hot tubs behind them
- Paul is the best husband any group of Naked cyclist sister wives could ever have
- We have the greatest group of teammates and friends anyone could ask for
Already looking forward to Camp Steamboat,
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DENVER, Colo (February 19, 2013) – After last years triumphant debut of the Naked twins, we are pleased and concerned to announce the return of the Amandas.
“Last year was like waking up from a comma to discover you had a twin you never knew about and the weirdest part is she looks just like me” said Amanda Cyr.
“Yeah, all my life I knew I was missing something but never did I imagine it was a twin I never knew I had!” weeped Amanda Bye. “She is the padding to my chamois” smirked Cyr and “she is the cream to my itch” winked Bye.
They both have had to work through their new found identical identities though. Cyr talks about having to overcome learning that her twin had in fact tried to eat her in the womb. ”There was a reason I felt like I had been in a zombie movie in my past life.”
“I have always loved me some BBQ and there is no hiding that” Bye said jokingly…we hope.
Quick Left CEO and Colorado Womens Cycling Project sponsor Ingrid Alongi was overheard stating “I would rank them in a top 500 female cycling twins of all times VH1 special if someone paid me.” Rolling Stones magazine is calling this “The most anticipated return to the stage since Milli Vanilli.” Just recently Will.I.AM begged the girls to be featured in his new chart topper “Scream and Shout”.
2013 looks to be a big year for the hottest Naked twins since the Olsen sisters. ”Parents better watch your children cross the street and crazy jumping deer beware” touts Bye. ”No road rash too deep, no curb too high” proclaimed Cyr. ”We are back to bring the Naked Amandas action to a city near you!”
Please start by watching this video from Amanda 1.0, then proceed to the race report. Congrats to all the Naked ladies who represented in Louisville 2013 for Cyclocross Masters World Championships!
There were many unforgettable quotes this weekend. The one that stands out most was by Susan’s coach, Jon Tarkington, “The race is not the most memorable part of the experience. It is everything else.” I have to agree. The race was a 63 minute grueling experience. The training, rides, nerves and spending time with others before and after was much more memorable.
We arrived Monday and got up bright-and-early on Tuesday to pre-ride the course. Not so bad, warm weather, cloudy, did not need leg or arm-warmers. The course itself had some off-camber turns, some easy barriers as they were on a flat area of the course, sand that would easily pack down from the humidity. The most challenging area was a run up, then an off-camber s-turn, another run up and a steep descent before heading back to the finish. Did it take some practice? Yes. Was it very technically challenging? No, but that is all about to change.
Middle of the night, we were awoken by tornado warnings, we looked out the window to see high winds and pouring rain (what else would you do during a tornado?). The course was flooded by the morning and the race sign had been blown over. Races were all delayed that morning. We decided to do leg-openers in the heated tent that was provided by the amazing crew at Pro Bike Express but would forego riding the course for fear of injuring ourselves or our bikes. There was a heat that Joan had to race in and they pronounced her last name wrong but said they would get it right when she won the championship. We picked up our race numbers and Susan found out that her new lucky number was actually 18.
Thursday–race day. Joan raced first. It was a muddy mess and cold so the ground was a bit more firm than later in the day. She did very well with few mistakes and took 5th place in the World (women, non-elite, age group).
I then raced and had the fortunate pleasure of a very muddy, grueling course. I had to pit my bike every half lap. At one point my wheels locked up from the mud and I ran my bike into the pit, it was estimated that my bike weighed 45 pounds. My pit crew was absolutely amazing. An announcer said that “Pit crews don’t win a race but they can lose one.” This is absolutely true but luckily my pit crew was flawless. Each time I came through my bike was a mangled mess but when I left it was clean, in the correct gear, pedals in the proper spot, chain back on and ready (although let me also add that they probably had 10 minutes to get it right as I was going that slow). I ran approximately half of each lap with an increase of weight from mud on the cleats, shoes and calves. I kept thinking that I am a cyclist, not a runner, and would try to get back on my bike but could not move. This is also the moment that Michael Hanna’s running intervals came through for me. The downhills were slick and the flats were slow. Two laps done and my legs were burning like never before, I pointed to the time as I could not speak from over-exertion trying to indicate that my race was over as I was pass the time limit. The official looks and me and calmly states that the “Race isn’t over until I say it is over. One more lap…” It takes everything in me to not DNF. According to the officials, I passed two more people that lap and rode exhausted but with few errors. I remember thinking at the end that I would take the final decent as fast as possible as my racing season was over and if I broke an ankle, I could hobble in and then have time to recover. Cyclocross is all about pre-riding and figuring out how to ride the course, but each lap was so different that it was like a new course each time. I finished in 8th place.
Susan then raced and had a wonderful race, she was so strong and watching her race reminds me that I have a long way to go. She had the largest women’s field that day and raced against very strong women. We finished the races proud of our accomplishments and ready to get some well-deserved rest.
Then the unthinkable happened, we started talking about planning to race the Cyclocross World Championships in 2015 in Tabor, Czech Republic. Watch out World, Naked Women’s Racing is coming back for a podium…
Special shout out to City of Louisville for being so friendly, welcoming and hosting a great week of racing. To Pro Bike Express for ensuring that our bikes were working perfectly, for keeping everything running smooth and for remembering all the things that we forgot. To Naked Juice for giving me the strength to train, to Michael Hanna for always being a wonderfully supportive coach, to Bike Source for keeping my bike in working condition (it is coming in soon), Rudy Project for the flashy helmet and Colorado Women’s Cycling Project for being a super supportive women’s cycling team. To Emily Zinn for my good luck socks and magazines, Katie Macarelli for my mix CD, Nicole Mack for the personalized cowbell and for all the well wishes from everyone. You all rock.
Guess who’s now going to Master’s Worlds for CX AND earned their upgrade!? Amanda 1.0-that’s who!
This post is about the amazing world of cyclocross and my new favorite number, three. Last weekend was Cross at the North Colorado State Cyclocross Championships. The Cat 4 women did not race until Sunday. So bright and early Heather, Lora and I (3 of us) loaded up and travelled to Loveland to pre-ride the course. Upon arrival, we heard about a few crashes that had already occurred and I was a bit timid to ride this course. It was lose dirt, inclines, lots of turns, a steep, off-camber decline and a run up, not to mention one set of barriers. We had watched the SW 35+ take this course like it was an easy Sunday ride and we had the expertise of both Susan and Joan in the pre-ride. I knew that they would direct us in a safe manner through each section of the course. We got to the steep downhill and since I had watched other people take it very fast, I decided that I would do the same. Problem was that I took the wrong line and was thrown into the air. I somehow landed in the soft dirt and did not fall but was clearly shaky and could barely hold onto my handlebars afterwards (partially as a result of locking my elbows). That is when I heard both Joan and Susan sternly state that I was to get back to the top and do it again. I whispered that I would do it again next lap but no it had to be done then and they were right. Heather helped by reminding me that I could do this and Lora reminded me to look like a cat coming down the hill. Each time I rode that section, I felt more comfortable.
Sunday I arrived to the race to see many of the Cat 4 women had already arrived and were starting to warm-up in the very cold and surprisingly humid conditions. There were so many cheery voices and familiar faces. This is what cycling is all about. People wishing each other good luck, wanting the best for each other, joking and genuinely happy to see each other. Part of the camaraderie is having similar ways to explain areas of the course. Here are a few examples of how these ladies have creatively come up with ways to connect my last name with racing. If there is sand or a weird turn, they will ask “What is the Amanda Bye-Line?” or “Is there an Amanda Bye-Line Canal through the sand yet?” When we are pre-riding the question is “Where is the Amanda Bye-Pass?” The new one thanks to Larry Grossman’s commentary on my racing career (note this was less than one minute in length as there is not much to say) is now being referred to as the “Amanda Bye-O.”
During the race, you can hear women cheering for each other. At the end of the race, everyone waited at the finish for all riders to come through, congratulated each other on a great season and took a Cat 4 photo. Katie had already cat’ed up and thus was not in the picture but she was certainly an integral part of the season. These ladies are much more than cyclocross racers, they are friends and I am sure going to miss them in the off season.
The cross cup results were posted later that day and I got 3rd in the racer competition and Naked Women’s Racing got 3rd in the Cat 4 category, I also got 3rd in the Boulder Cycling Series and thus the inevitable occurred and I cat’ed up to my new favorite number … 3.
Huge shout out to all the announcers, teams, photographers and promotors for a wonderful season of cross. Here are my 3 favorite pics from States. Now to get ready for CX Worlds.