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    The CPSC and SRAM, LLC are conducting a recall of a limited number of SRAM 10-speed PowerLock connector links for their 10-speed chains. This link is found on the following SRAM 10-speed chains: PC-1090R, PC-1090, PC-1070, PC-1050, and the PC-1030, and was also sold as a standalone aftermarket item. You are receiving this email because you may have purchased an chain or link from Competitive Cyclist subject to this recall. Please note that the recall is limited to PowerLock links with date codes M and N only. No other date codes are subject to the recall. This date code is [...]

    Postcards From Colorado

    For flatlanders, a trip to the high mountains is a good time, every time. Mild to severe hypoxia is expected and always a treat. The thin dry air batters our bodies and our senses, but the views and the spectacle of alpine passes and craggy peaks make it all worthwhile. We drove up Pike’s Peak to get a good start on our cerebral edema. All we could think about was how sweet it would be to get our bikes out and ride back down to Colorado Springs from the top for the ultimate shuttle DH run. Is that possible? Let [...]

    - When I opened the champagne it was for no good reason. The off-season, when it’s new like this, maybe it’s a celebration in itself. If I don’t want to ride today I won’t. A half-bottle later I walked alone to pick up some takeout. I floated through a parking lot, my easygoing wooze making me a sucker for the accidental ballet in the Camry there. If the buzz in my brain could last so long, I’d watch her -- the beauty of it -- putting on the seatbelt 100 times more. She shifted into reverse, and in the slow [...]

    2010 Fox Forks

    Can you improve upon perfection? Take and sneak peek at what’s new and improved on Fox forks for 2010.

    The art of loitering

    - The art of loitering. It’s a pre-requisite for advanced studies in How to Win a Bike Race. Pack-shattering brute strength is rare and it gets even rarer as you climb into loftier race categories. Loitering near the front of the main group, but not at the front, in search of that sacred-yet-profane sweet spot. Sacred because the origin of victory is there. Profane because profanity is what you get in buckets as you stay close, close, close but never nose into the wind. A veteran ProTour rider once said that on the best days you get one chance to [...]

    FSA compact bars offer a wonderful alternative to more traditional ergo and shallow drop bars. They feature a short reach, and the gently sloping drops allow for full palm contact which facilitates better bike handling at any speed.

    - For that, they wore long-sleeve skinsuits? - Take 2. - Dietary advice courtesy of an in-his-prime Eddy Merckx: ‘It’s not the cakes. It’s the climbs.’ - I think maybe I’ll run for the USA Cycling Board of Directors and my platform will be 1 issue deep: Henceforth race numbers shall only be pinned to pockets, and touch no other portion of the jersey. The numbers themselves cannot be taller than a jersey pocket or wider than 1.5 jersey pockets. 4-digit race numbers shall be banned. If a race number is ever pinned around a shoulder blade or if it [...]

    - That was not an earthquake you felt in the aftermath of Stage 15. It was the world’s most populous simultaneous orgasm as Lance lost nearly 2 minutes and the Haters tremored in a collective, sweat-soaked delight. For the first time in a decade Lance showed he wasn’t bulletproof. Even before the autobus reached the finish the Haters hit their keyboards hard -- their expressions of anger-glee thrust into all corners of the internet with a joy that was nothing short of frightful. I turned off my TV post-Stage 15 thinking Contador’s ferocity was something unmatchable. The uncorking of the [...]

    Endura Hummvee Short

    The Endura Hummvee Short delivers, comfort, durability, and ample storage capacity at a price that makes it a must buy.

    The Event After a beautiful drive from Reno via Truckee, my wife and I rolled into Downieville, California, around 7, just in time to pick up my bike from the hosts of the Downieville Classic All-Mountain World Championships, Yuba Expeditions. I had shipped it two days prior and it arrived mostly in one piece. The lid to my bike’s travel case had come open somewhere along the way and thankfully nothing was missing from the case -- oddly enough, I had actually gained a few random Xerox machine small parts bound for a California state agency. Slightly nerved up from [...]

    - The most stirring photo of the Tour so far. - It’s apparent that Alberto Contador has never heard the phrase ‘If you hit the king, you have to kill him.’ His Stage 7 attack smacked of the same lack of discipline that lost him 40 seconds in the crosswinds of Stage 3. When I say discipline, don’t mistake that for ‘fealty.’ I don’t think he owes Lance a damn thing. But history proves that the Tour is rarely-if-ever won thanks to sprint-for-the-city-sign escapades like what we saw in Stage 7. Its effect, from a GC perspective, was next to [...]

    We’ve had a recent experience that left us laughing, with a few new quotes to wear out in the shop, and proud that we could provide a good service to someone who would appreciate it so damn much. We’d been contacted by an Englishman about a possible local demo of an XXL Turner Sultan. Hmmm…this guy must be a beast. Of course, that’s what we always think when that particular bike goes out for a demo. But the strange thing is, it goes out at least as often as the large and is in a state of near constant rotation [...]

    The Downieville Classic challenges riders both physically and mentally. The mental aspect is tested even before the event happens as riders try to prepare their bikes. The All-Mountain category of the Classic requires riders to use the exact same bike for both legs of the event -- summiting the eight mile, 4500 vertical foot climb on the 29-mile XC course the first day, and ripping the 17-mile downhill course the following day. Bottom line -- it’s gotta be light and efficient (but not too light), and strong, yet not overbuilt. After months of product testing, evaluation, and consideration, my Downieville [...]

    - In bike racing the greatest obstacle isn’t the climbs. It isn’t the wind. It’s the dude five spots ahead of you who loses the wheel in front of him and you don’t notice ’til the gap is 6 lengths long. Single-file bike racing is destructive like nothing else. Long live single-file bike racing. - Watching a 10am Cialis commercial during Stage 1 of the Tour and seeing a mid-40′s woman give a handjob to a brass staircase handrail in front of me & my 3 kids has driven me to this: I’ll mail a $250 Competitive Cyclist Gift Card [...]

    Me Life is funny. Most anyone that knows me would tell you I’m a hammerhead. I’ve got one pace, and that’s whatever is in my tank that day. It’s a blessing and a curse, but it is what it is. Wired like that, it comes as no surprise that my roots are in XC racing -- especially given the utter lack of ‘big’ mountains in our region. The Ozark Mountains are beautiful, but they’re more of an undulating landscape full of punchy climbs and twisty, rocky, rooted singletrack. As such, most of my time has been spent somewhere between a [...]

    We recently sold a new Ventana El Comandante single-speed to an old friend. As we waited for a few parts to hit the loading dock, the anticipation of his conversion grew. He was one of those cycling converts who gets in a little late in the game, coerced and/or lured by a group of buddies who’ve shared lots of trail time. You might know someone like this. He’s a great athlete so his learning curve was steep. But he’s also a world champion reveler when anyone else falters, so it was especially satisfying to witness his first year as a [...]

    Maybe it was our heightened metaphysical state due to the Sedona Vortex , or maybe it was the late night Del Taco we munched down while hauling ass from the Phoenix airport up to Sedona. Whatever it was, we made a few realizations in the desert: Lesson One: Working in the bike industry can have its perks. Our friends from Magura USA invited us to their annual press camp to give a preview of upcoming 2010 products and product training from Stefan Pahl, the Magura Germany product manager. The camp is held in Sedona, Ariz., which boasts myriad notable trails [...]

    - Laurent Jalabert, on when he knew it was time to retire from racing. ‘I was seeing the asses of riders I’d never seen the faces of.’ - I’m an avowed Greg LeMond fan no matter what. He was my #1 teenage hero and nobody can take away the thousand ways he inspired me back then. But it gives me the creeps in a big way to see how many lawsuits he’s gotten himself tied up in. His courtroom fight with the Billionaire’s Boys Club aka the Yellowstone Club has gone on for years, and given how Yellowstone just filed [...]

    It’s amazing how much useless information is available on the internet. This article stands as a good example. However, after a killer cross-country ride in the heat and humidity of Central Arkansas, on a 6′ freeride bike no less, a surfing session seemed in order last night. With the AC blasting and a refreshing Mt. Dew by my side, I found this – a picture of Competitive Cyclist’s own service department member, Don West, on the IMBA website. Check out that extended right leg. Either he’s really roosting that switchback corner or he’s about to fall over. Therein lies the [...]

    If you’ve spent much time riding in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco then you, too, have experienced the strangeness of Ocean Beach. It’s the Pacific Ocean at the western edge of the park, and for all the wonders of the Marin Headlands and the Golden Gate Bridge both just a stone’s throw away, Ocean Beach was remarkable for its trashiness. In the daytime it was overrun by tourists and at night it seemingly became something worse as evinced by the condom wrappers, tampon applicators, and other pieces of vaguely medical-related plastic suggestive of more-dedicated-than-just-recreational drug use. For such a [...]

    - The two sweetest words in the English language: Nice pull. - Nobody made note of the strangeness that unfolded in the final 1km of the Mt. Ventoux stage at the Dauphine-Libere. As this video shows, it appears that Alejandro Valverde’s pace causes his breakaway companion, Liquigas’ Sylvester Szmyd, to detonate. Note how 10-15 seconds after Szmyd blows up, Valverde stands up and accelerates. And then watch the last few hundred meters to the finish. If you read the post-race account on cyclingnews, Valverde sorta lukewarmly says he gifted Szmyd the stage win. But based on some of his accelerations [...]

    Ritchey Torque Key

    Snap, crackle, pop. That is a symphony of sounds we prefer to hear at the breakfast table rather than emanating from our carbon components in the bike stand. As bike technology progresses, and we continue to move towards lighter and lighter componentry, it has become increasingly more important to monitor our torque values as we install our handlebars, stems, and seatposts. The days of the ham-fisted bike mechanic are long gone and jokes about “tighten it ’til it smokes, then back off a hair” are no longer that funny once you hear that ominous crunch. That first crunch means one [...]

    - When you see the phrase ‘Fantasy Cycling Game,’ I think this is what they mean. - Final Giro thought #1: What’s the deal with Danilo DiLuca and time trial bikes? During the monstrous Cinque Terre TT he rode: Road bike, road bars, everyday helmet, and Campy Boras with only one TT-minded detail, a skinsuit. His average speed was ~38kph. During the Rome TT he rode: Road bike, road bars w/basic clip-ons, an aero helmet, Boras, and a skinsuit. His average speed was ~45kph. Given how gear-crazy the sport of cycling is, and given the truckloads of Lira spent wind-tunnel [...]

    Bang for Your Buck

    While the economy has us all watching our pennies, we ponder what it is that makes a product a good value. What is it that gives us that warm and fuzzy feeling? While there are lots of good deals out there on the web, and we strive to offer plenty of our own, we know that value can be something different. We think a good value product is one that can deliver great performance, come at a reasonable cost, and last for a long time. We encourage everyone to seek value in our specials section, but here we’ve assembled some [...]