Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Lance's Melon

To the occasional annoyance of my fellow bike racers, I often analogize bike racing ot the Army.  In both worlds, team loyalty is important and you get up really early to get your job done.  Let’s face it, we do more by  1:00 pm on Saturday than most people do all weekend.

Here is my most recent analogy.  Amateur bike racing is to the Reserves what pro bike racing is to Active Duty.  Sure, they have the big budgets with top of the line equipment.  But, in amateur bike racing we have diverse talent.  While the pros have so called “experts” at their disposals, we have talented, educated and creative people in our ranks from diverse backgrounds.   There is a huge asset that is occasionally leveraged by the enlightened.
Case in point, Walt Nestell.  Walt is on our team, Old Town Bicycle Race Team.  He has raced for years.  He is understated.  Humble.  I knew he was creative as I purchased some shoe covers that he made.  They match the blue of our kits and they rock. 

However, I had no idea he made custom helmets for skiing and, more importantly, cycling. Here is how I found out. Today, Walt posted on our team site a little anecdote.  He was contacted to go to Hawaii to build a custom TT helmet for an athlete.  You guessed it, Lance Armstrong.  Apparently, Lance wants to go faster this year in the TT at some race they hold in France.  Lance is known for innovation and trying new things.  No idea how he knew of Walt but somehow Walt got the call.

Many of you probably have seen this Youtube video.  Apparently, this was shot out of Walt’s car as they conducted comparison testing.

Here is a photo of Walt constructing the mold of Lance’s head for the custom fit helmet.

Another photo

Get this, apparently Lance warms up on a trainer in the parking lot just like we do. 

A better look at Walt's design. 

Now I know that Walt has a company and can build customized helmets. Here is his website.  Check it out. http://www.speedski.com/speed/

Anecdotes about Lance.  Walt reports that Lance is very nice and his hospitality was amazing.  Walt was provided accommodations in a five start hotel in Hawaii as he worked on the project.

Walt is also doing some design work for Darth Vadar: 

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