Michael Broderick

    “I went into my first ride on XX in south africa directly out of the stand and onto a world cup race course that I had been pre riding for the week prior with my bike built up with an eclectic mix of 2008 Sram family and other components. I had literally just come off a lap with my old build and was heading out a couple of hours later with the fresh XX group. The first impression was that the group was smooth and simple with incredibly responsive shifting in the front especially.”

Hello from a rustic cabana it the foothills of Volcan Nevada near the Termas de Chillan, Chile-Comments Off on Hello from a rustic cabana it the foothills of Volcan Nevada near the Termas de Chillan, Chile-

Posted In Athletes,Michael Broderick on February 5, 2010

Mike and I are slowly recovering from the Trans Andes Challenge, an epic 6 days of mountain bike competition and camping.  We are currently sorting thru our piles of dirty things, patching up our wounds  and trying to get back into some kind of rhythm that dosent involve riding for the majority of our day as hard as we can as a duo pro race team.

As I look down at my scratched up legs and swollen ankle I know it was a tough week on my body.  My latest part time job is caring for and nursing my big fat swollen right ankle.  I stopped taking the ibuprofin, which got me thru the race, and now I can really feel the true pain of my injury.  I am surprised I was even able to ride at all, let alone race so intensely with this injury.

Mike and I  are currently reflecting on the intense week… a bit dazed and (me) pretty darn tired.  We both pushed our tolerance and boundaries in more areas than just riding our bikes a lot… We logged in over 250 miles and 30,000+ feet of climbing over the 6 days in the rugged terrain near Pucon.  Throughout this time were were residing in a roving tent city which we had to pack and unpack every few days.  I never felt like I could get enough sleep or to eat as dinner hours were late and the 7am breakfast consistently happening before I was ready to rise.  We were fed a basic diet that ensured we were well down to our lean race weight by the end of the 6 day stint.  Except for the chilean wine sponsor there really were not many frills.  We were mostly wondering where the bottled water was, but so far the tap water from the area has been treating us well.

Trying to nourish our bodies after extreme exertion alongside the 100+ other hungry riders, families and staff, was another race in itself.  This past week was the first time since I can remember that I wasn’t in control of my food sources or choices.  I grumbled in line many a times… wondering what I would find to eat, wishing I just brought my little camp stove.

The six days of racing/surviving expanded my mind in what I thought was possible.   I was reminded how the mind controls the body.  that we are much bigger, stronger and more powerful together than on our own.  It was amazing to race with Mike as a team.  He was my rock, my support and as always my best friend.  It was my decision to continue racing after I got injured on the 2nd day… taking it one pedal stroke at a time.  I was unable to walk at first, but could pedal without much pain.  The jarring descents hurt, but I gritted my teeth, knowing the end was coming soon (or not).  When the hills got too steep to ride up, Mike would run behind me and push.  He would carry my bike when we crossed the deep rivers clinging to a cable, he passed me food and drink, gently sweeping me along with his hand on my back, keeping me moving forward… fast.   We won all 6 stages in the mixed category and even managed to win the first and third stages – over all the men’s teams.

We were focused and rode fast, calling out as we read the trail and dodged constant and potentially dangerous obstacles.  the pace was like an XC race but the course much longer and more demanding –  the course was not always marked clearly and there were not protective pads on trees or railings to keep us from riding off cliffs.  it was up to each rider to maintain safety.  Our mantra became: safety first!

We fueled well the whole time with our Clif and Guayaki energy products and our equipment was flawless – thanks to MIke keeping our gear cleaned and tuned daily!  I rode my legendary  ti seven sola (built in 2003) and MIke rode his attention getting 69er Sola.  We both rocked the KENDA small block 8 tires mounted on stans new “podium mmx” wheelsets – which proved to be a flawless lightweight and durable setup for good and fast traction on the rugged volcanic terrain.  I chose to ride the smaller gear combo of SRAMs XX (26×39 front and 11×26 rear) and it was perfect even in the extreme gradients!   We were stoked to not have ANY mechanical problems the entire race.   Although Mike was one of the only to bring spare equipment just in case, and probably the most knowledgeable mechanic on site – he found himself being asked by many for advice, which he kindly lent, despite his fatigue.

The race experience itself brought a level of difficulty that constantly brought us to our limits and beyond.   Although the tent city setting brought it’s own challenges, it was the people who were part of the event that we often relied on for strength and comraderie to keep on track and ultimately finish with such success.  All the adversity only proved to make it something more memorable and incredible in the end.  Huge respect to all who were there, challenging themselves riding in the heat, dust, rain, over some of the most incredible terrain we have had the opportunity to ride.   I am humbled by and grateful for the whole experience.  I don’t think it will be our last.

saludos,
mary and mike

Michael Broderick XX TestimonialComments Off on Michael Broderick XX Testimonial

Posted In Athletes,Michael Broderick on January 27, 2010

Michael Broderick:
USA

When you rode XX for the first time, what were your first impressions?
I went into my first ride on XX in south africa directly out of the stand and onto a world cup race course that I had been pre riding for the week prior with my bike built up with an eclectic mix of 2008 Sram family and other components.  I had literally just come off a lap with my old build and was heading out a couple of hours later with the fresh XX group. The first impression was that the group was smooth and simple with incredibly responsive shifting in the front especially.   The most lasting impression came from the overall compatale relationship and willingness of each individual component in the the groupo to work together quickly, fluidly and right.

After having XX on your bike for both training and racing, what advantages do you feel the XX 2×10 gearing offers you?
A feeling that I am able to produce and maintain a more steady power in part due to the larger spread in the rear cassette and part due to the the faster shift times in the front driveline.    The XX groupo allows me to ramp up the speed before the hills in a tall gear and efficiently tick through the industry leading wide ratio rear cassette while keeping a steady power on the pedals.  In the event I get in trouble and an under (pedaling) pressure drop to the small ring is inevitable the front shift is smoother and faster than the competition resulting in less shift induced  power loss.

Before XX, how much experience did you have riding 2×9?
I had been riding 2×9 almost exclusively for the previous 4 seasons and off and on in several years prior to that.  enough to know that the system  offers some  significant advantages by design alone. enough of an advantage to consider it even in the typical case that the components are not 100 percent happy working together.   I have experienced several incarnations of the 2×9 attempts with a wide range of cranks rings and shifters from several different manufacturers. I still mostly felt compelled to keep a 3×9 system in my kit since the gear ratios were a bit off for some of the steeper courses as I has a max of a 27x 34.

What chainrings did you typically use – 26/39 or 28/42? How did you decide to use these gears?
At the outset we ran the 28/42 and liked it quite a bit but as soon as we got a hold of the 26/39 we were in love. Of course the 26×39 is the smart choice for the 29″ bikes but I also like it better for 99% of the xc race courses and riding conditions that I cam across throughout the season.    The 39 x 11 has proven to be enough gear at the top end for even the fastest XC courses and allows me to stay in the big ring for more of the race and eliminate any extra shifting.   The 26 is also a blessing when things get really long  steep or hard for any other reason.

If you had to choose one single favorite aspect of XX, what would it be?
The 2 x 10 drivetrain with the ultra wide ratio rear cassette.  I could  come up with at least  5 aspects of the XX  that are superior over other systems I have used.