#Ultra-Romance

tag

Cool Breeze in Nutmeg Country: Crust Chapter II

Reportage

Cool Breeze in Nutmeg Country: Crust Chapter II

Sometime back in late February the event calendar for Team Brooks Cool Breeze looked like any stadium tour you’d expect for such a glamorous gaggle of athletes.  Grav’l, touring, MTB, hang gliding, street luging…. you name it, we were gonna do it.  Times were fast, relaxing, and exciting, but little did we know that even lifestyle celebrity “athletes” would have little fun in the months to come.

Nutmeg Nor’Easter 2020 Information

Radar

Nutmeg Nor’Easter 2020 Information

Ronnie and Namz from Ronsbikes.com have just announced the details for the Nor’Easter 2020. How does one throw an event in a Pandemic? Well… they have that figured out:

“This year is a hard one for more reasons than the human brain can comprehend— therefore, the way we will be conducting this event is a little different from years past.
First and foremost we seek to avoid any sort of large group congregation in any place that might funnel folks together. Our plan to prevent this is to have no specific event space as we have in the past; and sadly no Pizza truck from Fire in the Kitchen. You wanna eat food, you gotta bring it and make it yourself. You wanna drink beer—- same thing. You wanna poop—- dig a hole in the woods and have at it, etc.”

Head to Ronsbikes.com to RSVP for the event and read more about this event!

Radar

Nutmeg Nor’Easter 2019

This pandemic has us scouring social media for videos to share, in an attempt to transport us back to the time when group rides were the norm and our calendars were filled with fun rides. That’s what brought me to find this recap video from the 2019 Nutmeg Nor’Easter.

Nam’s Crust Bikes “Cantibolt” Lightning Bolt Thrower

Reportage

Nam’s Crust Bikes “Cantibolt” Lightning Bolt Thrower

Behold, a timeless diamond in the crust. The “cantibolt” is the “sign a waiver” lightest tubed-cantilever-1” threaded offering from Crust Bikes; the first name in Boastfully Poor Business Decisions Index Weekly. A riff on the Jan Mule that so famously/infamously dons just about every other page of Bicycle Quarterly; the Crust version has coincidentally received praise from its muse… the sultan of supple; the prince of planing himself… Jan Heine uuuuuuvvv Bicycle Quarterly.

Ronnie Romance’s Madrean Ultradynamico Country Fixed

Reportage

Ronnie Romance’s Madrean Ultradynamico Country Fixed

That suntanned, SUNTOURist, king of the grandiose, the beausage factory himself, Mr. Ronnie Romance, aka Ultra Romance, really knows how to put a bicycle together, even a simple one such as a fixed gear. Yet we’re not talking a Kierin bike, those NJS-stamped sparkle machines, or even a British Path Racer. This is a bike designed specifically for a plump, rough and tumble tire, with a relaxed fit, eons past the aggressive saddle-to-bar drop bikes of yesteryear, yet somewhere in-between the monster-truck abilities of a tracklocross bike. This Madrean Fabrications ‘country fixed’ is unlike anything I’ve seen in recent memory… or maybe it’s just my old age.

Ultradynamico’s Cava Race 650b x 47.99 Tires in Stock Now

Radar

Ultradynamico’s Cava Race 650b x 47.99 Tires in Stock Now

Remember that fancy, lightweight, and supple rear tire Bené René used on his Crust Bikes Lightning Bolt build? The one where he got in the freezing water in his skivvies? How could you forget? Well, the testing period is finished with the Cava tire, a file tread, fast-rolling, gravel tire with a plump profile of 47.99mm wide on a 650b diaphragm. Head on over to Ultradynamico to see the specs on the Cava and to pick up one or a pair.

John’s Titanium Sklar Pack Mule MTB with Tumbleweed Persuader Bars

Reportage

John’s Titanium Sklar Pack Mule MTB with Tumbleweed Persuader Bars

This bike is the direct result of many experiences, beginning with my 44 Bikes touring bike and culminating with the Moots Baxter I spent a great deal of time on last year both fully-loaded and set up in what I could call expedition mode. After a lot of back and forth, I realized that I like 29+ bikes for bikepacking and yeah, titanium is really nice for desert riding. These mental musings came to the full realization after spending some time talking with Adam from Sklar Bikes this summer in Bozeman.

Ultra Romance’s Crust Lightning Bolt is Lighter than a Soft Whisper

Reportage

Ultra Romance’s Crust Lightning Bolt is Lighter than a Soft Whisper

18 lbs? 17 lbs? 16 lbs? What is weight anyway? Weight doesn’t matter but it doesn’t hurt either. Especially when your golden locks and bronze tan lines float effortlessly across white gravel roads, coating the roadside flora in a light layer of sedimentary seasoning. Dust, baby. It’s good for you. Yes, Ronnie Romance knows how to build a bike from a fine assortment of vintage components, exotic, supple rubber, and a bit of suntan oil. Case in point, his Crust Bikes Lightning Bolt is lighter than a soft whisper.

This Cub House Built Crust Bikes Lightning Bolt Cruiser Shines!

Reportage

This Cub House Built Crust Bikes Lightning Bolt Cruiser Shines!

What do you get when Bené, aka Ultra Romance, aka Ronnie McFly, aka Glistening Gandolf coerces an XC/roadie racer boi into embracing the long and slow lifestyle? Well, you’re about to find out. While Benedict and Sean from Team Dream were working closely on those nifty merino wool bib shorts, Benedict convinced Sean with his silver tongue to build up a dream bike. A veritable ex-roadie 2.0 cruiser, complete with all the iconic componentry of MTB and randonneuring’s heyday, which pinch me if I’m wrong, is always the present time. What you see here is the result of much toodlin’ and many man hours spent scrounging for parts. All aboard a Crust Bikes Lightning Bolt.

Team Brooks: a Grassroots Gravel Performance Art Installation Does Kanzaz

Reportage

Team Brooks: a Grassroots Gravel Performance Art Installation Does Kanzaz

Words by Coach Ronaldo Romance Jr. and photos by Team Brooks

(Gallery Photos are 95% disposable film cams that I handed out to the team.  Felt like it captured the inner “race” pretty authentically; and the medium was pretty fun in a “trip to the water park” “safe grad night” sorta way)

Booming Billowing Blooping Blurping Gravel.  

Even with DK getting as much coverage as the TDF, I trust the pace of the news these days has left your mind blank of such cognizance once again.  That’s good, as my memory of competing in the event 2 years ago has also been selectively erased, perhaps that’s why I reluctantly agreed to participate in this particular edition.

Fast Friends: Big Thoughts Through Big Sur

Reportage

Fast Friends: Big Thoughts Through Big Sur

Words by Tenzin Namdol, photos by Ronnie Romance

I was looking at everyone’s legs. The group of 13 included professional and semi professional racers, life-long athletes focused specifically on their relationship to the bicycle. There aren’t six packs; there’s, like, eight to ten pacs. Some even have muscular faces! How is that even possible to accomplish? Seeing my own soft animal body as lesser than their impressive builds. The grass kept getting greener and greener on the other side of my eyeballs and I felt myself getting smaller and smaller. Where in my body is this discomfort living? I had three days and the grand views around beautiful Big Sur to find the site of where this discomfort lived in my body. Aside from physical discomfort from physical exertion, I came up empty. Instead, I found an interstice where feelings of awe grew and that became my saving grace.

Two Tucson Mixed Terrain Rides I Highly Recommend

Reportage

Two Tucson Mixed Terrain Rides I Highly Recommend

At the end of most trips, I end up with left-over photos or photos that don’t have a home in any one specific gallery. Yet, while in Tucson, I found myself carrying a camera and shooting photos on just about every ride, resulting in some pretty stout photographic documentation of a handful of rides. Without diving deep into the history or the meaning, I decided to simply present these routes with ample photographic documentation.

California Golde World Premiere

Radar

California Golde World Premiere

California Golde is a movie. One about riding bikes in California and all the hardships that come with big, hard, ambitious tours. March 9th is the California Golde world premiere at LAND in Austin, TX, 501 Pedernales st 2e Austin, TX 78702, at 7pm, with a showing at 8pm, a concert by John Wesley Coleman III set at 8.30-9ish (ten songs), and another late showing at 9:30pm. Along with the film, a book will be for sale, with refreshments by Madre Mezcal, BANDIT, fun times by OLD PAL, and best of all, it’s FREE!

Ultra Romance’s Warthog Wash Wiper Dirt Tourer

Reportage

Ultra Romance’s Warthog Wash Wiper Dirt Tourer

Over the years, we’ve featured many of Benedict‘s bikes here on the site. They’re always a lil bit of weird with a dash of kooky but the result of a lot of ‘pondering over a wooden pipe’ functional. For the latest build, which we dubbed the Warthog Wash Wiper, all the above applies.

In short, this bike is a desert bulldozer, yet not one you’d find Hayduke underneath with a 3′ wrench and a cheater bar. This is a bicycle, not a machine for destruction. The Warthog Wash Wiper, aka WWW, is an all-rounder dirt tourer, and it comes alive when the sand gets deep, where normal bikes become less than ideal trekking poles.