last saturday, steve fry and i drove to kansas city to begin what turned out to be a quite interesting and thoroughly enjoyable experience covering the 2008 tour of missouri. with the cooperation of brook watts and his amazing crew at medalist sports, and the missouri department of tourism, as host of the kim west radio cycling show, i was given insider's access to this remarkable race, still now in its sophomore edition as i type this.
i have hours of recorded conversations with racers, support people, race fans, and more; fryguy shot scores of photos from the start of the first couple stages, from the women's criterium in kansas city, and from along tuesday's route. we're both going through our work, editing, and trying to make sense of it. fry already has a couple files posted. i'm going through recordings, notes, and scribbles i accumulated.
it's amazing stuff, and i can't wait to get it polished and either posted here and on the radio show blog, on the radio show website itself, or to use it in upcoming episodes.
i broadcast sunday's show, episode 20, live from the penthouse suite of the embassy suites on the plaza in the historic plaza district of kansas city. i was excited to talk with liz hecht of vander kitten racing team during the first half of the show, and i finally got to chat face-to-face with previous guest ally brandt, of cheerwine racing team. immediately following the live show, we all rushed downstairs to the gala woman's team presentation. race announcer extraordinaire dave towle was emcee for the women, as he was the night before at the men's presentation, a $250/head shindig up the street a few blocks.
without giving it too much thought, here are some highlights [several full reports will follow]:
1--meeting in person--and talking at length--with the many cyclists who have appeared on the radio show in the weeks leading up to the tour;
2--going on saturday's team training ride with the kelly benefits team;
3--many meals with a variety of teams in the team dining rooms;
4--talking at length with recent radio show guest and cycling legend john howard;
5--talking again with current cycling menace steve tilford, who seemed rather edgy and puzzled why a race would be taking place withOUT him;
6--appearing as a guest live commentator on missouri radio station KRWP, 107.7 FM, "the lake" during and following the edward jones sprint competition in stockton [watch out, liggett!];
7--talking with recently retired race legend gord frasier;
8--serving as inspiration for both tom zirbel [stage 1] and mike sayers [stage 2] shortly before their day-long race-leading breaks about the importance of racing aggressively [coincidence? i don't think so!];
9--nearly being killed as i was a part of the garmin chipotle team train tuesday morning driving from the airport hyatt to the start of stage 2 in clinton, missouri;
10--meeting rory mason, an old friend from my ames cycling days, who has for the last four years served as global sports marketing manager for cannondale europe. b.v. in this capacity, rory works as liason for all of the pro teams who ride cannondale bikes, giant bikes, and more. look for an interview with rory in the coming weeks, and look for the return of someone who WILL challenge lance in france next july.
. . . . .
as you can tell, without giving this any thought at all, and without checking my notes, i have a lot to talk about. and i was only there for four and a half days.
i can't WAIT for the tour of california, man.