[code"> [/code"> Courtenay Brown: June 2006

Monday, June 26, 2006

2 Reasons to live in Reno

These sunset photos are both from this past Saturday night. I found myself thinking "wow Reno is awesome!" as I took these but actually all day long I was just counting the minutes until we got out of the driness, heat, and seediness (it is a gambling town after all).

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Thursday, June 22, 2006

A Collage Of Sorts

So, I got my camera and cable situation figured out (thank you Glenn!!) so now I have some more photos to share.

Here I am in Philly with a 4-leaf clover I found in the lawn. I am so smiley because certain other people thought that looking for one would be fuitless but they were wrong:

At DQ on the way home from the Mankato RR at Nature Valley, I had my first blizzard, and saw this cool car:

Taitt's stylin' and comfy ride on the way back from Captech. Interestingly, she finished the best of the 3 of us in the race, but got the worst seat... I think it had something to do with her map reading skills. Plus I would rather hold hands with Devon than Taitt ;)

My mom's kitty Charlie:

A toad on our lawn at Nature Valley:

Nice pre-race weather for our Downtown Minneapolis crit at Nature Valley (we still raced somehow...)

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Monday, June 19, 2006

Engagement Photos...

UPDATE: We are no longer engaged. But the photos are still lovely, as is Devon. But we are not a We anymore.
Here are some photos from Devon's proposal on Lemon Hill last week! I'll give you the play-by-play (thanks to Josh Kadis for the photos, which are lovely despite my unglamourous post-race outfit)...


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Friday, June 09, 2006

The Queen of 23rd Place Finishes 15th!!

Yesterday was the Reading race, the second leg of the Triple Crown race series here in Pennsylvania. Like in Lancaster, the women did a criterium, then the pro men did a road race.
The race was a lot of fun. I was worried because it was a 1.9 mile loop, usually criterium courses are a mile or less, and I was expecting the course to feel long and boring. But it was great - there were 8 turns, some little rises and descents, plenty of varied pavement (i.e. potholes!), some wind, and a lot of spectators. We did 13 laps, none of which felt boring due to the big teams attacking, countering, etc. I tried to race hard and to not worry about running out of gas for the finish - I came across the line 15th! If you have been following my blog you will have noticed that I seem to be the world's expert at finishing 20-somethingth place. But I am breaking out of that rut starting yesterday!
I don't have photos from this race right now - Devon was busy getting ready for his race. And after I finished my race I scrambled to change clothes, check results, buy a piece of pizza for lunch, and find the Monex van so I could go to the feed zone.
Here is the only picture I got of the men's race which went by at standard warp speed. Dan Schmatz went down in a crash early in the race - after I took this photo his soigneur helped clean him up and get his torn spandex off. What a mess.
Then after the race Devon and I spent 40 miles lost on the Pennsylvania Highway system, which as far as I am concerned wins the award for least-tourist-friendly-and-least-well-marked-and-hardest-to-turn-around-in-after-making-a-wrong-guess-as-to-which-exit-you-are-supposed-to-take in the whole country!

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A Week in Pennsylvania

My teammate Taitt headed back to the West Coast on Sunday, but Martina got here yesterday! She, Devon and I went for a ride today...
Here we are after an encounter (verbal, not physical!) with a crazed middle-aged mom in a crappy car:
Here are some little geese along the bike path:
We saw two deer, but one ran off snorting when Devon did his wild-turkey imitation:
A cute shop dog in Manayunk PA who was almost as cute as my mom's bulldog Mikey:

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Monday, June 05, 2006


Yesterday was the Lancaster race - a crit for me, a road race for the boys. Lancaster is part of Philly week, now referred to as the"Triple Crown", and this is the first year they have had a series of women's races. Lancaster and Thursday's race at Reading are not NRC races for us, but since Liberty Classic (on Sunday) is the biggest women's race on the NRC calendar, everyone is here for the first two races.

Anyway, the race was harder than I expected. The course was windy and there was a lot of bad pavement, plus on top of the usual pro women's teams we also had T-Mobile. I hung in there, once again had a brief front-of-the-race lap or two before returning to mid-pack, and then I finished 23rd. I am definitely consistent!

Here are some photos of me during the race, taken by my favorite race photographer ever, Devon Vigus (I still can't figure out how he gets such good pictures with my camera! I feel lucky if I get a blurry shot of his foot during his races!)
i seem to have liked racing next to this travelgirl girl... she is in both pictures!
I was in the feed zone for the boys' race. It was a lot of fun. But I need to go to bed.

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CSC Invitational

Sadly I don't have pictures from this race. But it was awesome! It's a really cool technical course in Arlington VA, 1K long with lots of corners, questionable pavement, wind... no time to get bored! We started with 60 girls, including the usual heavy-hitters from Colavita, Cheerwine, Lipton, and Victory Brewing since it was an NRC race. My mom was there cheering (and once again there is no way I would have known she was there because she is a very quiet cheerleader but Devon was with her vociferously!) and she said that almost immediately there were girls who got "left behind" and "told to stop racing" (i.e. dropped and pulled). I felt like I had a great race, I moved around the pack and even saw the front of the race and was in good position to go for a prime, but I opted to save my matches for the finish. I finished 21st, which was good considering the distance and the pace, and I have more confidence now that I can break out of this 20-something-ish place streak!
The men's race was totally nuts. Guys were dropping off constantly, a few guys every lap. They did 100 laps (for reference, we did 50). Hilton Clarke and Brad Huff were off the front for almost the entire race, maintaining a 30 second lead, and the rest of the field was single file to maintain that gap. Then with 13 to go everything changed - the two breakaways were suddenly reabsorbed (and the back half of the 50 remaining racers got completely shelled), a new break went off, then a lap later Richard England hit a curb and flipped over the bike landing on his face, at the front of the race, and then 7 more guys were flying through the air, hitting street signs, metal barricades, etc. 24 of the 150 starters finished. For some reason they had no hay bales or padding at this race, but we have protection all over the place in most of our California local races...
Anyway here is Devon's post-race recovery snack:

mmmm... cake and pie and ice cream!

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Captech and Simon the Ragdoll

Captech Classic is this cool race in downtown Richmond. It goes up hill, then down, then back up again. I am great at going downhill but uphill is not exactly my forte... anyway I did manage to get my first ever call-up at an NRC race which was pretty awesome, apparently I am the "McGuire Danger Woman"! I did not finish this hard windy race, but Taitt did which was pretty awesome. Brenda Lyons was second, which was also awesome. Next year I will give it another go, with more attentive positioning and better preparation.

I took some action shots of the men's race while I was in the feed zone at the top of the hill, but they came out blurry and/or of the completely wrong person. It was a typically insane pro men's race to watch - lots and lots of attrition over the course of the 2+ hours.

Anyway, the absolute coolest thing about this race was our host house, which belonged to Greg, Tricia, and Simon. Here is Simon:

Here is happy Taitt with patient Simon:

Simon is a Ragdoll kitty. I want one.

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More trip stuff

Here are some more photos from the trip:

me and taitt riding down cumberstone rd.

then we saved another turtle! we actually have saved 3 turtles so far this trip but for the third one i did not have my camera :(

the coffeeshop where we goofed off on the internet in nice air conditioning sporting our farmer tans

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