Sunday, December 9, 2018

How my bikes found me

I am not a shopper. I'll do enough homework to get myself into the ballpark for a purchase, and then I like the decisions to make themselves. That's been the story for each of my three bikes purchased in my adult lifetime. There was no shopping. They found me!

Bike 1 - Jamis Ventura Road Bike (June 2009)

Story: After running for two years and being injured too many times, I decided I should get a bike and become a triathlete. I scanned our local Craigslist and one and only one bike stood out to me as the right size, the right condition (barely used), and really I just though it was pretty!  So I bought it and raced the heck out of it for two years.

Bike 2 - Quintana Roo Tri Bike (June, 2011)

Story: I'd been mulling over the idea of a tri bike for a while. I had a conversation with the owner of a local bike shop about it and he said I should try his tri bike and see if I even liked that style of bike. The 2008 Quintana Roo Lucero Lite bike was not for sale, but he let me take it, he let me race it after riding it only once (photo above), and I fell in love. He sold me the bike! Again, I've raced the heck out of that bike and will continue to do so in non draft-legal races. It's just a great partnership and we've raced the roads of Auckland, London, and Rotterdam together. 

Bike 3 - Trek Domane SLR with Di2 (September, 2018)

Story: For years I had been debating getting a different (more comfortable, non-aluminum) road bike. When I qualified for Draft-Legal Sprint Worlds, I decided that was the sign that it was time. I reached out to my coach, to another coach friend, and to Lauren Goss, a professional triathlete I have worked with since 2012, looking for leads. It just so happened Lauren was about to list her Trek Domane, a bike that has quite a following for comfort and performance. (Here she is the day she got the bike.) While I wanted the bike for some limited draft-legal racing, my greater interest is really to enjoy centuries and group rides in comfort and not be "that person" on the tri bike.

The big question was, would it fit me? I am just an inch taller than Lauren, and after some measurements by our Trek rep Janet at our LBS, and by Lauren remotely, we confirmed that it should work. 

I arranged for shipping through Bike Flights, Lauren packed it up, and I anxiously awaited its arrival at FedEx!

Sherpa and equipment manager Bryan headed up the assembly. (Big thanks to him for helping with the decision making and acquisition.) I hadn't been on a road bike in years and had never used Di2 shifting, so those first laps around a parking lot were a little scary!!

To add to the fun of this bike, I got the Di2 charger from pro Kevin Collington, and Garmin Vector pedals from pro Timothy O'Donnell. Timothy is a Garmin athlete and was the top American male at Kona for the second time this year - I worked with him for several years. I asked each of them to send along some speed to go along with it all (haha, wish it worked that way!).

I rode the Domane exclusively this fall and am absolutely thrilled with it. The Jamis went on to a new home with a budding triathlete. The QR is on the trainer and it's nice to be able to leave it on there for the winter. I feel extremely fortunate to have two nice bikes that work well for me. And I love that they come with stories. 

Thank you to Lauren and Timothy for helping me to have a much nicer bike than I could have possibly dreamed of. Thank you to Bryan, my mom, and Coach Jim who encouraged me to "get the bike!" 

My Christmas came early!!