Leaving your nest ain’t easy, especially when your home town has been good to you. Hanson Little used to be a pro BMX rider – on paper – he still rips and takes trips from time to time, but his days of going big are limited by past injuries and the desire to keep on the bike, not healing off it.
Recently, Hanson bought a van and sold all of his belongings, save for a few bicycles. He plans on spending a great deal of time on the road over the next few months, but before he left town, I met up with him and shot some photos of his new mobile digs.
This weekend, I sent over some interview questions, which he promptly replied to… check them out below in a special Ride Along!
If you love something, thrash it. That’s exactly what Kenny has done with this bike. When he picked up this frame off local Craigslist, he was looking for a classic steel workhorse. It just so happened that he snagged a De Rosa… for a song. If you’re going to spend all day on a bike, it might as well be a great ride, right?
Using mostly spare parts and some swap-found components, he built it up with SRAM force, Profile hubs to H+Son Archetypes, trigger shifters on riser bars and kept the vintage 3T stem. A Wald Basket helps out in light and easy carries while Kenny still wears a backpack throughout the day for the bigger hauls.
This bike has character. The chain lock and u-lock bite marks on the Columbus decal alone do it for me!
There are bikes that epitomize performance and style, but few carry the brand clout of Moots. Sure, your dentist, or doctor might have one, but chances are, they didn’t spring for the Psychlo X RSL. This frame is arguably the best cross offering to come from the brand, with its 44mm head tube, PF30 BB, oversized tubing, shouldering-friendly – formed top tube and more than enough mud clearance at the stays. This ain’t your everyday Moots!
Ben’s a mechanic at Mellow Johnny’s, the local Moots dealer here in Austin. He picked up this frame for a song and built it up over a six month period of time, from used parts and new, with no immediate deadline in mind. A few weeks ago, it was ready to roll with a mix of Force / Red 22, ENVE and TRP Spyre mechanical disc brakes.
We rode out to one of our favorite “hot laps” singletrack spots in south Austin and shot photos of the bike sitting in a field of Blue Bonnets, the Texas state flower. With Nationals in Austin this year, Ben’s starting to train for cross the best way possible: shredding trails!
Hanson Little has become a pretty great friend over the past few years. If you’ve followed BMX at all, then his name might be familiar, having ridden for Mutiny and T-1.
While his days of “being pro” are behind him, he now spends his free time on a road bike, BMX or MTB, shredding trails, hips, ditches and the steep hills here in Austin to get his kicks.
The girlfriend bike. Or in this case, the fiancé bike. It can be a tricky, slippery slope, especially when you’re kind of – ok really – obsessed with bicycles. When I bought this bike from Andy at FYXO last year, it came with a C-Record gruppo. Good for looking at, sucky for climbing hills – for Lauren anyway. We quickly found out that that 8-speed cassette didn’t have the gear range she needed to pedal up to Austin’s beautiful vistas…
This bike sat on my wall for about a year, collecting dust.
It’s no secret that cyclocross is closer to MTB racing than it is road racing. The degree of separation between the two sports is often blurred, especially when compared to XC racing. In short: you’ve got to have bike control to excel at the sport. Sure fitness is one thing, but learning how to ride is key and tied directly to that is your position on a bike.
Tim Johnson is an advocate of the MTB position on a cross bike and on Saturday, he ran a clinic with Bicycle Sport Shop in preparation for the 2015 Cyclocross Nationals here in Austin.
There were three groups that day: A, B and C – depending on rider skill level. From there, Tim, with the help of two others, Johnny and Pete, broke down the basics of cyclocross racing. I hung around for the most important part: riding position… Read on in the gallery for a break-down of what Tim taught the clinic about how to race their cross bikes and check out some bullet points below.
Mark your calendars – get ready – Beat the Clock Cycling and The Radavist will be throwing one hell of an unsanctioned cross race Thursday night before Cross Nationals in Austin. There will be an afterparty, booze, fun times and prizes. More information to come.
If you’re planning on coming to Nationals in Austin, make it a week long event. I’ll make sure to keep you entertained…
Tim Johnson is one of the key figures in US cyclocross racing. He’s sponsored by Redbull, Mavic and races for Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com. He is charismatic, funny and dedicated to cyclocross. Today Tim held a cross clinic in Austin, TX – while he was in town to discuss the 2015 Cyclocross Nationals in Austin – and to check out Moto GP.
After shooting some photos at the clinic, I stopped Tim for a quick chat about the 2015 Cyclocross Nationals in Austin. Check that out below!
The name Chumba has been around for some time in the mountain bike world. Back in the early 90′s, Chumba first began making frames in California. The company has since gotten a bit of a facelift and a new home base just outside of Austin, TX. With its California and Colorado heritage, the team at Chumba has started designing frames in Austin and fabricating them in Oregon.
At the 2014 Mellow Johnny’s Classic yesterday, I got to check out one of Chumba’s first prototype MTBs, in the 29+ platform. Along with Orange Seal, Chumba will be offering their bikes tubeless-ready, which means lighter wheels and overall build weight. Utilizing True Temper, Whisky Parts and Paragon hardware (not pictured), these bikes come in pounds lighter than other 29+ offerings on the market.
The final production run will use Ceracote, rather than powder, have new graphics, a stainless head badge and an oversized OX Plat downtube. Completes will be built with Race Face cranks and Thomson parts. MSRP on the frame will be around $1,200 – but that’s not finalized yet.
Being that Chumba is located outside Austin, I’ll be following up on their projects as events warrant. For now, their team is racing and riding these bikes on our local trails and putting in PR&D as needed.
Follow Chumba on Facebook and Instagram for more!
Super Bowl Weekend. It’s an excuse for people to drink, eat and yell at the television while a bunch of men in spandex chase a ball around a field. Personally, it’s not my thing and luckily, not my friends’ thing either. So rather than spend the weekend indoors, myself, some friends and Beat the Clock Cycling decided to take advantage of the vacant Texas parks and plan a ride.
Well, I planned the ride. 100 miles, over half of it was dirt. I did one of the roads on the last Yonder Journal Brovet and I wanted to explore the area even more. We’d leave from Inks Lake and take a series of back-country, private roads and kick in Willow City’s popular loop before heading back to camp. Water? Food? None. We had to pack it all in. Most rode cross bikes or light tourers, with bags for food. There was maybe one stop along the way.
Because I had to drop Lauren off at the airport that Friday morning, I drove with two others. The rest either drove out that night after work or rode the 75 miles from Austin, fully loaded.
Since we wanted to convey only the chillest of riding paces and as a protest to the Super Bowl, most of us left the lycra at home. Giro was kind enough to supply some New Road apparel, shoes and helmets. I brought the bourbon. Spencer brought a dull hatchet and we were all stoked.
Did I mention cliff jumps in January? Yeah… Check out more photos in the Gallery, all shot with my Mamiya 7ii and Portra 400 / Kodak TMAX 400. Many thanks to Giro for supplying equipment for this ride!