The first YGR 10 Track long distance dedication of 2018 is coming from our good friend Rick Vanderleek. Off the bike Rick is the Brand Manager at Topo Designs and Head Cat Herder of the Topo Designs Cyclocross team. When it comes to riding, he loves a quality steel steed, rides for the love of riding, maybe he wishes he was faster or rode further but not at the expense of a few post ride beers or time with his wife and daughters.  

Fav bike:
It’s a complete toss-up, between (1) my first-ever mountain bike, a Raleigh Technium, that I paid cash for from lawn mowing, only to have stolen out of my garage months later (I knew who it was, too). (2) My late-90s Diamond Back Ascent EX (((THAT SMOKE PAINT JOB))) Dang I sold that thing for a few bucks while living in Philly. (3) My 2007 Bianchi Volpe, my first cyclocross bike now turned daily commuter – so much style it’ll outlast me for sure.

Fav ride:
Coming off ‘cross season, I really enjoy getting out of the neighborhood and hitting Redstone Canyon for a handful of miles. Time to think, ride some gravel, ring the bell for the cattle and be on the watch for that bear I startled the first time I ever rode it. Or a nice rip on Blue Sky Trail > Indian Summer & back.

When I listen to these:
I tried riding a trainer & tuning out with multiple playlists for a couple of winters back in Michigan. Not for me. I’ve gotta ride outdoors, year-round. So really, these are some of my greatest hits from recent (and not so recent) bike meddling in the basement or garage. I don’t ride with ear buds, so often I find some of these tunes looping in the background of my thoughts while covering ground & sucking oxygen. Can we do YGR Top 20 or 30 next?