Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Missoula Bicycle Works - First Friday Art Event


Solo Bike Exhibtion

"Cycling Topography"
Opening Reception - May 3, 2013
708 So. Higgins Ave
Missoula, Montana 59801
5 - 7pm 
Join me on my birthday and First Friday May 3rd at Missoula Bicycle Works.
Introducing this year's artist series bike jersey!

 Snacks and refreshments provided


Red line - 1-90
lime green line - Rail Road
Blue line - Clark Fork River
Upper and lower Rattlesnake, Northside, Westside, Downtown, UM, Slant Neighborhoods.

 Last winter owner of Missoula Bicycle Works Alex Gallego asked me to submit ideas for their annual bike jersey. My idea was to incorporate mapping of Missoula with a bike. I acturally painting two oil paintings and they picked the biggest! This painting is 3ft tall and 2ft wide!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Training for Butte 50

Butte 50/100 - "The most difficult 100 mile mountain bike race in the country"

Jen at mile 30?
Click here to view 2012 Butte 100/50 Teaser made by Jon Wick.

John and Jen Bardsley at race registration
The Butte 50/100 - insane cross-country mountain bike race on the Continental divide. It is known as the "The most difficult 100 mile mountain bike race in the country"

I raced the 50 last year for the first time, and it was epic.
That is a word I use often, and not usually does it really hold the meaning....but this course truly is E.P.I.C!

It took me 8 hours to complete. I was on my bike racing from 9am until 5pm.
Holy crap - I am so so so sore.
What is amazing to me is the way the body reacts to that kind of treatment. Riding over 10,000ft of mountain back-country trails, I just kept putting fuel in - and my body kept going. The key for me in this race was the science of intake. Every time I ate a Powerbar, Cliff bar, Hammer gel, Heed Water, or Salt-tablets then my body would instantly feel better. Honestly, it was like pushing a button to ON.

Butte 100/50 staff at the Finish
Missoula Girls Represent! Kelly and Jen after race
What is strange is how your body starts to reject food. WERID! You really don't want to eat anything when competing in such a long endurance race. I was getting nauseous and my stomach was twisted up on the hard Basin Creek Climb - in fact I was cramping in strange places other than my hamstrings and calf muscles too. One cramp actually occurred cornering a steep section and I ended up wrecking and laying there with both legs seizing in pain, not able to even bend them. Thankfully, a rider came along and asked me how many Salt-tables did I take so far...."only 2" I said. Ops - this revealed that this was my first Butte 50. She told me to take 2 every hour and eat with food so I would not get nauseous.

Amazingly! That it worked - and I mean instantly. After stretching and taking a few minuets to eat and re-group, I felt really good for the rest of the 25miles of the race. In fact, i road harder having the nutrition figured out. THANK ANDREA from Missoula!

One of the coolest thing about doing this sort of event are the people. For one, the Volunteers are awesome.
Also, there is a sort of kin-ship on the course when you are hammering away 20miles back in the wilderness. I wore funny pink socks that had pom-poms that dangled while racing. Some guys were calling me "socks" and asking about "wind-resistance" - good ice breaker when suffering collectively.
Tinker with his Race Number at Registration 2012
Another awesome moment is when Tinker Juarez passes you on the course. I love that when he went by me all the guys ahead were all cheering for him too all the way up the hill.
Tinker is a Pro that rides for Cannondale. His presence at the Butte 100/50 is so great. First of all, he is so humble and such a beast on the trail. This year he won the 100mile race and beat his time from last year by over an hour! (8:22.41) That is like my time for the 50 !!!! ha ha ha - Thanks for coming to Montana Tinker!

Riders at the Finish

Our old friend Mike B. from Butte with his daughters after 100 - Good Job Buddy!

It should be noted that my man John raced a full hour and half faster than me ! Ha ha - so amazing.
John's time was 6:45 and he came in 20th for the men. Pretty impressive since he wasn't on his bike until June this season. (Why? Because he was in Finland doing Math Research for a month - John's a math Professor at UM).
I ended up taking 8th in the women's open division with a time of 8:11 - stoked to make top 10!
A big "Cyber High Five" to my women's team MT ALPHA - these ladies came to represent!
Jamie Terry took 1st in women's 50, Heidi Gaskill won women's Elite for the 50.
WAY TO GO Ladies!

At the Finish - John replenishing responsibly and Jen with Beer. Thanks for the Custom MUGS Organizers!
Cool finish line with Posters of past year images
John's race number
Volunteers at Race - Thanks guys!
Butte 50/100 mile race - Highland Mountains, Montana

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Specialized Women's new full suspension 29er - RUMOR


Jen's sick new ride - Specialized Women's first Full Suspension 29' "RUMOR"
The bike that I picked as Specialized Women's Bike Ambassador was a big secret. Specialized has been working on their first women's full suspension 29er since 2010! They did not release the bike until April 23rd - so I can finally tell everyone how insanely awesome it is.........
Ok, so the Rumor is so incredible. I cant stress how sexy, smooth, fast, light, and bad ass this bike is.

Rumor is just a beast over rocks, logs and roots. I was bracing my body, but it was unessasary since my bike road smoothly over obsticles.

I really felt like my riding skills went up 10 fold because of the geometry and design of the Rumor. One example was riding up steep slippery single track with logs to lift over. I thought forsure that I would have to dismount, but the Rumor was just a monster and ate the log for breakfast. Everytime I had an obsticle like that, I had it in my head that I couldn't do it, but then the Rumor suprised me by making it easy. So cool - I feel like a stronger rider after 2 rides.

Another rad component to my bike is a special button! YUP, I have a button that I push and my seat drops! For every down hill, I pushed my button and WHOOOSH! My seat was down and my butt was back behind and over my back wheel. Equally cool was b pushing the button again to pop up for when I need it up. Wicked feature - everyone is gonna want it.
For you teckies (Command Post 34.9mm clamp, 7050 hard anodized alloy collar, single bolt)

Specialized Women's Rumor
  • All-New M5 manipulated alloy, 110mm-travel frame with women's XC Trail 29 geometry and tubesets, tapered head tube, sealed cartridge bearing pivots, and DMD derailleur mount makes this one tough and lightweight trail machine

  • FOX Float CTD Evolution shock with AUTOSAG with women's tune features 3 compression settings: Climb, Trail and Descend, plus ProPedal

  • FOX Float CTD Performance Series 29 fork with CTD damper, rebound and compression adjust, lockout, tapered steerer tube and 110mm of travel smooths technical terrain

  • Roval Control Trail 29 142+ wheelset with butted DT Swiss spokes and a wider rim profile and 12mm thru-axle for lightweight toughness.

  • The 2.3" Ground Control tire has a fast rolling and versatile tread for premium traction on technical trails

  • Custom Formula T1 S hydraulic disc brakes with reach adjustment, metallic pads and SRAM compatible MiXmaster shifter mounts provide dependable braking

  • New SRAM Type 2 X0 mid cage 10-speed rear derailleur provides crisp and reliable gear changes

  • Women's Body Geometry Jett saddle with hollow Cr-Mo rails features lightweight foam cushioning and an ergonomic cutout for pressure relief

  • Cheryl and Oliva happy to be MTBing.

    I have to thank our hostess Olivia that took us up too some sweet single track in Santa Cruz.

    The Trails were nappy, and had some puddles in some stretches - also, the track was super rooty and slippery! We enjoyed some amazing redwood trees that towered above us like giants!
    Super fun with the ladies! I am so grateful for a such a great weekend of riding with incredible women on incredible bikes.
    I came away from the riding with these ladies with one word.......................Strength.

    I am Specialized.

    Thursday, April 18, 2013

    12 hour MTB race - Salmon, Idaho

    Super excited for the 12 Hrs of Disco at Discovery Hill in Idaho.The race starts at 7 a.m. and is timed till 7 p.m. 
    It should be a good time with 1,100 ft of elevation gain and loss on a 8 mile loop of singletrack.

    I am going to race QUAD with my women's mountain bike team MT ALPHA - !

    May 18, 2013 - Salmon, Idaho


    Wednesday, April 17, 2013

    Training for a 50 mile MTB race

    The Butte 50!!!!!
    So last year was my first ever big big big bike race.
    I have been racing mountain bike since 1993, but I have never trained for such a bad ass event. Sure I have ridden 50 miles before on my bike and done races that are intense, but the Butte 50 is another breed. What makes it different is the elevation gain and loss within those 50 miles. It is literally like racing up and over 6 mountain peaks. The course consists 11,459ft of elevation GAIN in a single day. The single track consists of serious technical loose granite and dense wooded single track along the Continental Divide Trail (CDT). The 50 mile race is sometimes referred as the "South Loop" because the 100-mile Race begin on mile 53 north loop before heading south on the the south loop. It is all very beautiful, however I wont be viewing the sweeping views of the Highland mountains, I will instead have my head down and keeping my breathing consistent. My goal was to not blow up. Although my husband won this race a few years ago, I just want to finish strong, ride my best ride and have fun.

    The last section of the race after the notorious Basin Creek Climb is going to be my "happy place" because I know that when I make it to that point with some reserved energy, then I can rock the last 20 miles of the race. I used to live and Butte, and my fave ride of all time in Montana is the Beaver Ponds which is the last section of the race. It is a cherry ride with flowy roller-coaster single track with enormous granite boulders that erupted about 60 to 70 million years ago. (The Boulder Batholith)

    On top of the world - Jen on a training ride at 7651 feet (2332.02 meters) above Sea Level. Near Sheep Mountain outside of Missoula Montana in the Rattlesnake Wildrness .

    Jen's Training!
    Starting NOW
    In June (my husband was in Finland for a month, so I had to be self motivated)
    In July
    • 2 weekly rides with MT Alpha
    • Weekend 5 -6 hour rides with John. Examples for one long ride - Start from Missoula, ride up Overlook, down Ravine trail up to Snowbowl and up Beargrass highway then back down to Missoula - YUCK!
    • Do the Wednesday night Super D downhill series
    • Last week ride Sheep Mountain twice (26mile loop with 7mile uphill to peak).

    Bears - it should be noted that I encountered 8 bears this past season while riding - all were "good bears and either just looked at me, kept eating huckleberries or ran away.
    I only had one Mama Bear stand up and woof at me up near Snowbowl, Mt. She had two cubs and would not budge. Luckily a worker at Snowbowl was chopping wood and heard me making a racket banging metal on old snowmobiles in an effort make the bear leave........He rescued me and put my bike in his pickup so I could get by her and back down the Mountain. She barely moved an inch off the road when we drove past.

    Fast Boy! My riding partner John Bardsley


    Last years training ride with John - mile 14 in Rattlesnake Wilderness

    My women's team - MT ALPHA - Photo by Tom Robertson http://www.tomrobertsonphoto.com/

    John and Jen *pre-riding Butte 50 course (beverpond area) - Cherry ride!

    Sunday, April 14, 2013

    Jen Bardsley - Montana Bike Girl Introduction

    Jennifer Racicot Bardsley

    *Specialized Women's Ambassador for 2013
    Specialized Women on facebook
    Specialized Bikes Website

    From;  Born and raised in Helena, Montana
    Has lived in Utah, Oregon, NC, Finland and New Zealand.
    Currently lives in Missoula, Montana.

    Started mountain biking & racing in 1993.
    First bike - Specialized Rock Hopper (no suspension)

    MT ALPHA in Missoula (All Women's Radness)
    Website; www.mtalphacycling.com
    Facebook; https://www.facebook.com/MtAlphaCycling

    Mentoring the next generation of girl shredders;
    Director of; Montana Girl Mountain Bike Camp 
    Website; montanagirlmountainbikecamp
    Facebook page; https://www.facebook.com/MontanaGirlMountainBikeCamp

    Adventure Websites that I developed and maintain;

    Women that Mountain Bike -  Women-that-Mountain-Bike
    AdventureBardsley - http://adventurebardsley.blogspot.com/
    Montana Bike Girl http://montanabikegirl.blogspot.com/

    Favorite Charity Bike Work;

    * Fundraising for the Tanner Olson BMX Memorial Bike Park in Missoula, Montana

    Bike Films I have edited and produced;
     Adventure Film Channel; (AdventureBardsley YouTube)

    Jen and her kids - Alex and Ellie in Montana.
    *Alex Bardsley - Dirtjumper & Freerider www.alexbardsley.com

    *Ellie Bardsley - Crosscountry and downhill ripper.
    Rides for MT ALPHA out of Missoula, Mt.


    *John Bardsley - Married since 1996 (Math Professor and Bike Stud)
    University of Montana Website - John's adventure blog; Math Geek Adventures


    Artist - painter, sculpture, drawing, video installation
    Facebook; https://www.facebook.com/jenniferbardsleyart
    Art Video Channel; http://www.youtube.com/user/montanagirlart

    Jen excited at the Specialized Global Headquarters in Morgan Hill, California