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Folks in Philadelphia who love bikes, cats, and snacks.

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Rothrock TrailMix: So I Didn’t DNF

by Lindsay Hall-Stec (State College Laser Cat)

This past weekend I accomplished a goal that had eluded me for two years: I finished the long course at the Rothrock TrailMix. A couple of qualifications to this are that a) A bridge was out on the road up to the John Wert trail, which is the most technical trail of the traditional long course, which adds an extra “ain’t nobody got time for this” aspect with its placement near the end of the deceptively hard 36 mile course. So having not included the John Wert trail, I still don’t feel like I’ve finished the *real* long course. b) Implicit in my goal of finishing was that finishing meant something closer to the five hour mark than the six hour mark and not just simple dragging my blown-out body through the length of the course before the point that the race staff kicked me off of it. Continue reading


Caffeinated Cross: A Lesson in Self Acceptance

Awhile ago I (Krista) watched the women’s field at a local cyclocross race, straddling a friend’s cyclocross bike so I could bike from spot to spot along the winding course. At one straight away, in which the women zipped by with speed, an older man who was spectating beside me turned to me, gave me a quick once over and asked, “Hey, how come you’re not in this race?” His big smile pressed down the corners of his eyes with grandfatherly glee and I responded, “Oh, I don’t want to race,” a half-truth that I let hesitantly slip out. I cringed for the ensuing, well-worn conversation that I knew was about to take place.

“C’mon! You scared? You can do it, it’s easy!” he said and chuckled. I let out a little laugh.

“I’ve raced before, I know what it’s like,” I said, a smile gripping my face.

“Well, what’s your excuse then!?” he said, shrugging his shoulders. Continue reading

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Vermont 50 as skills training!

Last Sunday, I (Taryn) took on the Vermont 50 as my sixth time on a mountain bike.  I am new to cycling in general, and have realized that the only way to learn and improve your skills is to spend time in your saddle.  A 50 mile mountain bike race is exactly what I needed to figure out the sport and improve my skills, but it wasn’t easy. Continue reading

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A Very Soggy Brownstown Road Race Report

I find myself to be a stronger rider when it comes to longer distances, hence why I have previously mentioned that crits aren’t ususally my best events, so when my teammate Roz sent us a BikeReg page to a road/circuit race that happened to be on a day I had off from work, I was pretty stoked. For those of you not familiar with types of racing, crits are short quick laps, usually between 30mins to an hour long for women, while circuit races are also laps they are much larger laps, and therefore longer overall races. This particular one was five laps, for a total of 40 kilometers (25-ish miles). Continue reading

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#womens100 Ride 2 in Philly Series!

The Philadelphia Women’s 100 Ride Series prepares local women to take on the challenge of the Rapha Women’s 100 ride day, a global event where the Philadelphia contingent takes a 70-ish mile ride to Tabora Farms and back. 

Hills: ascending + descending spearheaded by Laser Cats’ Elisabeth Grindcore! (All photos by Laser Cat Sophia)



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Rapha Women’s 100 – And we’re off!


Photo by Michaela! (All the rest by Sophia)

Last Year, Rapha began a global initiative to encourage more women to ride bikes. Local groups organized to ride a metric century (~64 miles) together around the world. Philly had their own group organized by Laser Cats’ own Melissa Tabas and Arrow Racing / Women Bike PHL’s Michelle Lee. Read more about the official event: Rapha | Women’s 100. Continue reading

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Philly Bike Race!


I cashed in big time on the host housing thing, back when I did a little charity ride called Bike and Build: a group of people who ride across America (coast to coast) to raise awareness for and build affordable housing across America. I slept in church basements, school gyms, JCC’s, occasional dorm or hotel, in host housing, and throughout the process was amazed over and over at the generosity of strangers who take in strangers, just because that’s the right thing to do, and they are in a good circumstance to be able to do so.

Pepper Palace Pro Cycling Team!

Ever since then, I’ve been looking to keep the good karma flowing, and it’s also just fun to have old friends and new friends over for cycling and other events (erm, med school interviews and mathematics conferences for example). And thus, when Elisabeth sent out an email asking if anyone would be interested in hosting some people, I responded in a heartbeat: of course! Continue reading

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Red Hook Crit – Brooklyn 8


Photo by God & Famous

A vaincre sans péril, on triomphe sans gloire.

Like the stuff of legends, Red Hook Crit polarizes opinions instantaneously. You either think it’s the most idiotic ridiculous fake race ever, or you actually know what it’s about: an event that requires courage, confidence, and extraordinary skill. Yes, it’s on brakeless track bikes on a crit course. Yes, that is unusual. Yes, I don’t recommend it for an average joe who happens to ride bikes occasionally. However, the next person who tells me that it’s a “glorified alley-cat with a bunch of untrained amateurs,” or that it is a race that is “adding risk, for the shear sake of having the risk” – if you’re brave enough to say it to my face, you will encounter a dark, dark side of me that you’d best leave alone. Yes, it is dangerous, but so is every other bike race. I have felt safer in the Red Hook Crit women’s fields than some as a result of the high caliber of women racers who participate.

OK, rant aside now: you guys, this weekend was just really fucking awesome. Continue reading