World Team in San Francisco

World Team in San Francisco

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Saturday March 15, 2008 Hill Repeat Day

If you go to this link for the
March issue of
Alive Magazine,
starting on page 26 is a nice story and
lots of pictures of my Journey!
It just hit the net!
I'm guessing will be out in print one of the next Sundays in the East Bay Area!

Our Amgen 2008 Tour of California Adventure!

Good Bye Phoenix!
A quick stop @ a Costco Gas station in PHX on our way out of town. Knowing it will be about a dollar a gallon more for gas in Cali.
First big trip for my new rig!

Weds. Feb. 20 in the late PM we pull into Kim & Julie, My friend Tony's sister and Brother-in-law in Griffith Park, LA.
We made it in one piece so far bikes in the back!

After hours of sitting in the car we hike up the roads to the Famous Griffith Park Observatory to decompress our legs.

Then back to Kim & Julies for Dinner and
Sun's VS Laker's on TV
with Shaq against his old team.

Laker's win and we look out on a
Total Lunar Eclipse!

Thursday morning we ride Hill Repeats in LA up the back road to Griffith Observatory.
Then the long ride north to San Luis Obispo (SLO) for the finish of Thursdays Stage 5 of the
Amgen Tour of California.
Wet Tony!

Several hours before the expected finish we camp out in the front row on the final turn before the sprint to the finish. Nothing like standing in the pouring cold rain for hours during the Flu season!
Three unbelievable things that day, as the lead rider for Rock Racing passes us
on his way to the finish!
1) No one crashed and burned on this wicked corner to the finish with big white painted lines and a huge man hole cover!
2) A young Canadian Rider broke away and stayed away to finish in front of the Peloton. They almost always get caught by the angry mob chasing them!

3) Cold, Wet and Tired
we didn't get SICK!

After the race, onto Arroyo Grande to stay with
Tony's Parents for a few nights.

Now it was Friday morning February 22, 2008 the Eighth Anniversary of my Heart Transplant. On this day @ UMC in Tucson.
So many thoughts went through my mind as we went out to ride in the rain, cold, muddy roads of No Cal.
I remembered my year of illness and Hospital Incarcerations.
Being one of the very Lucky ones to survive all the scrapes and bumps and bruises of Cardiac ICU. On this day as my Donor Family Grieved their unfathomable loss. My Family drove to Tucson to visit with Dad as he made it with a new Heart and returned from surgery to his room.

We rode to the Beach, along country roads as I pondered how far I had come.
On the way back, Tony threw in an 18% grade hill just before we stopped for a Caffeine Break @ a local coffee House.

How had I survived? I should Ask Lance his take?

Now driven to Help and Make a Difference!

How had I made it back to be able to Live, much less compete all over the World?

Thank You God and Brady!

Saturday in Solvang, CA. Little Denmark, US Version.

In Solvang with Tony and his Dad to watch the Time Trial. Rain on the way but nothing but Sun as we got there.
The Time Trial, "The Race of Truth" would pitch little local Levi, last years overall winner against the very best Time Trialer's in the world!
On paper the likes of Zabriskie, Miller, Cancellera and other specialist would eat Levi for Lunch!

With big fire works on the horizon we broke out our

whippet assistant and

secret weapon, our lucky photographer.

As the Time Trial headed to the last starters, one of the Astana Team on the latest greatest
Trek TT Bike's sped by!

Then the Big Guns began finishing.

David Zabriskie US Champion.

The CSC Team Car which follows with Spare Bikes!

David Millar, UK Champion, Tucked in and Cruising!

Then the pre race Favorite
World Champ Fabian Cancellera, tucked and pushing to take over the overall race lead!

And last to start was the race leader
little Levi
the huge under dog, slated to be buried today.

Levi a local boy trains on this course!
Riding scared
He Put Out!

I hope they pay the Camera men well?
After a week of Rain, Cold and Wet mountains!

Go Levi!

One final turn then
PUSH to the Finish!

Unbelievable as little Levi buried all the Big Guns winning by :49 seconds in 30:46.80.
He Put Out!

A quick stop at the Rock Racing Truck!

Fast Freddy Rodriguez from No Cal!

Oscar Seville
a Spanish addition to the Team!

Originally, Friday Night we were to go to the Heart Concert in LA and film the first part of the movie on Brady & Me on my 8 th Transversary. Heart's management shot down our Friday Night Request.

On to Saturday and the Race goes from Santa Barbara to Santa Clarita!

We woke up and rode the Arroyo Grande Roads again.

No Rain today, Yea!

Thanked Tony's folks and left for LA with
VIP back stage Passes for the
Heart Concert that night in Riverside, Indio, CA.

Heart has always been one of my favorites with
a great sound and songs.

Ann & Nancy Wilson were awesome!

Can they Sing!
After the Concert we got to visit with the girls
and talk for awhile.

I vaguely remember the week before my Transplant sitting in the Cardiac Wing ,Bionic, cranking their song
as depression of living in the Hospital so long had set in!
What a treat to be their guests and meet them!

Sunday would bring the Final Stage of The 2008 Amgen Tour of California. Santa Clarita to Pasadena, finishing with 6 laps around the Rose Bowl in the pouring rain.
Another wild day of racing with a single leader chased by a group of ten that dwindled to McCartney, Southerland, Creed and Hincapie.
George making his move in the last 1/2 lap for the stage win.
How fitting as I wore George's personal new Defunct
T Mobile Winter wear.
When Disco broke up George signed with T Mobile, it left racing and I wound up with his new Team Gear for my winter Training,made for him with his name on the back.
George Migrated to Team High Road and had a great win on the final stage.

I used my Umbrella and George's great stuff kept me warm & dry!

Levi Leipheimer Golden Again

Levi after third @ 2007 Tour De France won his second in a row Tour of Cali to get his season off to a killer start. Now if only pro racing wakes up and lets Levi, Alberto & Astana enter this year Tour De France.
Politics, UHG!

Monday morning we got up early and headed out for one last ride in Cali.

No Rain, Yea!

We decided to do Hill Repeats on LA's Griffith Park Observatory back road. 12 %, 14 % to 22.4% grade at its worst.
Great practice for Escape!

As we headed up about 6:30 in the AM I noticed a few hooded sweat shirts on the road with Team Pacquaio.

When I saw more than one I knew it was his team and he was out for his morning training run and we saw his Video shoot.
On the second and third repeat just before I started back down I got to visit with him briefly.
One of the toughest little World Champion Boxers ever!
On my last descent I got a big smile and laugh out of him as I told him "How Much Heart he had"

In about four weeks Pacquiao is scheduled to meet WBC junior lightweight titleholder
Juan Manuel Marquez at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. It’s a rematch of their fight that took place four years ago.In The Ring magazine, Pacquiao (45-3-2) remains at the top of the junior lightweight division (130 pounds). He had been in the ratings for 108 weeks. Pacquiao is also at No. 2 in the pound-for-pound category behind welterweight champ
Floyd Mayweather.

A thanks to Julie & Kim for putting us up at their lovely LA home. Kim a fantastic contractor had a gem of a house( of course under construction) with a back yard off the charts with so many levels and extras.

And then our final Adventure!

The first filming of a movie on Brady & Me.

Thank You Robert Clarke for this great shot from the
Feb. 2007 National Geographic Web Site.

Stephen Auerbach had been one of the Producers on the UPN Network TV Show
"I Dare You- The Ultimate Challenge."

My Heart Donor Brady Michael's had his freak accident
on the set of I Dare You.

One Family's Tremendous Loss and ones Salvation!

We shot three different segments and locations.

The second one we watched Brady's Audition for the Show as we ate lunch.

I'm still trying to connect the dots on the start of my new Life and learning about my Donor.

Stephen told me the Network had made a commitment for 26 shows.

How everyone on the show Loved Brady,
especially The Ladies!

And how the Show's Management felt Brady was that the very special Fresh New Face ( a 20 year over night success.) And how Brady was so excited about his first huge Break for a Bright Future.

He told me about the Special Energy Brady had and how things evolved!

The final part we shot as Stephen and I walked along the Santa Monica Beach talking about many things.

That fateful day in February 2000 when Brady had his Freak Accident.

You know the rest!

As a great match in Blood Type and Body size I had the Heart of A World Champion Person, Brady Michael's!

God has blessed me so and I now train, work, live and smile each and every day because
my Donor Brady Family said Yes!

Thank You All as I prepare for my upcoming season in Transplant and Open competitions near and far.
With Huge Dreams and Goals I attack the 2008 racing Season
" Living Way Large, DUDE!

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