Tag: Bianchi

Spidermonkey Spotlight – Kylene Canham

I met the Spidermonkey’s on OkCupid. Well, kind of. But, truly, my experience with riding bikes has been all about relationships and this one started out as love at, well, second sight. The truth is, on the first date I swore I would NEVER ride a century. I mean, after all it is 100 miles on a bike and who wants to do that?! You have to understand that unlike many of you, I wasn’t born on a bike. See me here with my little sis? I’m 6 years old and still enjoying training wheels.

Me and my Lil sis

Me and my Lil sis

Not to worry; that same day they came off. It was awesome. I remember crashing into the grass right past that tree shortly after that picture was taken – my dad still running behind me. Sweet.

Pre-crash

Pre-crash

I’ve come a long way since that day and it’s been a great ride (pun intended). In 2013 Stewart Chapman made my Michigan weekend by allowing me to borrow my first big kids road bike!

Official owner of a big kids bike!

Official owner of a big kids bike! Thanks SC!

Later, she actually let my buy it. So, that pretty Red Bianchi became my first. And that’s when I knew this relationship was more fun and was going to last longer than the one I had with running. Hooked.

So I started riding. And then riding more. Getting to know the people I already knew better and getting to meet new people too. Oh, and loving it! So when the time came to get a little more committed I was excited! I completed my first Bike the Drive and felt great! Maybe I WOULD take on some more challenges!

Bike the Drive

Bike the Drive

In 2015, It happened. I joined the team. An official Spidermonkey! Got a kit, hit up VQ and learned how to group ride baby! I was lucky to have a ton of support along the way, especially from this guy. Thanks, D.

Getting dropped often, but still having a blast. Oh, and the thing I swore I’d NEVER do, I did. I won’t lie to you and say it was the best time of my life, but I did it! 100 miles, Done!

And then there was Vegas Spidermonkey style, and my first crash – wait, what, we have to shift here? Huh? Always learning and still loving it. Flats in the rain, chain needs lubed – no problem. I was taught that. Recently, I’ve gotten to know some of this team even better and I have to say – what an exciting, eclectic, smart, kind, fun and supportive group of people.

Vegas Baby!

Vegas Baby!

I’m not going to be someone I’m not and this team accepts that. I’m a jack of all trades and a master of a few. I love the bike, but I also love art and motorcycles and traveling, climbing and the occasional bar run, and so much more. It’s great because this team pushes me in just the right ways, and I’m still growing and loving every minute! Ca Caaaawwww!

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Climbing Monkey’s

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Spidermonkey Spotlight – Vincent Calabro

Spidermonkey Spotlight – Vincent Calabro

Who is Vincent? Is he that guy that lives with Brandon? I thought Corbin lived with Brandon? What do you mean there are three people on the team who work with John Castro? Should we test JPC?

Vincent is the Spidermonkey formerly known as Brandon’s roommate.

JPC BH and VC

JPC, BHall and Vincent at the MS Ride

Ok I’m more than just Brandon’s former roommate and John’s co-worker, so here is my tale told through six bikes:

The Bright Red Raleigh:
I grew up on the fringes of Cleveland with two brothers. The first bike I remember having was a bright red Raleigh. My brothers and I spent countless hours riding bikes in circles on our driveway. When this got boring we played a form of dodgeball on bikes but instead of inflated balls we’d chuck buckeyes at the person whose turn it was to ride the gauntlet. Near the end of the summer, when the weeds next to our house were tall enough, we’d venture out with golf clubs to carve out what amounted to a kid’s version of a cyclocross course. We’d create winding paths with obstacles along the way. The most treacherous was a 1’x1’ pit with broken glass that we placed a board over. Oh the joys of unsupervised childhood.

The Mongoose:
When I was in my early teens I got a Mongoose BMX bike. The Mongoose is notable for only two reasons:

1 – I won it from a raffle at the local Dick’s Sporting Goods.
2 – I thought I was hot shit on that bike.

Therefore in an attempt to impress the girls who lived in my cul de sac I rode the bike as fast as I could down my hilly driveway and leaned to turn onto the street. Sadly the Mongoose had other plans. The tires gave out and I slid across the street. Road rash clearly got all the ladies knocking at my door.

Helmet Test

Helmet Test

Clueless

Clueless

The Bianchi:
When I was 20 years old I worked as an intern in New York City. I was young, poor and wanted to soak up every bit of the city. I determined to take the little money I saved and to buy a bike rather than a monthly Metrocard. This is when I discovered the LBS. I visited them all and I wanted all the bikes (I still do). In a hipster bike shop in the Meatpacking District I met my first love, the Bianchi Pista. It sang soulful opera to my Italian roots. I only realized after walking out to the streets of Manhattan that I had no idea what a track bike was or why my new bike didn’t have any breaks. But as John Castro always tells me, you ride what you have. I rode that bike everyday to work, rain or shine. Nights and weekends were spent sprinting through Time Square and through Central Park. I even rode it on some longer rides like the 5 Boro Ride and Montauk Century. That bike carried me through New York, Philadelphia, New Haven and now daily on the streets of Chicago.

The Allez:
So much hope! So much promise! Then it got stolen out of my basement in Philadelphia. Renter’s insurance is great, but I didn’t have it.

The Surly:
In 2009 I got accepted into graduate school for architecture. As a last hurrah, two of my friends and I decided to do a bike camp from Seattle to San Francisco, and thus the purchase of the Surly. The first three days of our trip, it just poured. If you ever want to learn about the kindness of people, show up soaking wet with all your stuff strapped to your bike. But as soon as we hit the coast it was some of the most beautiful riding and camping.

Gravel and bike camping on the Surly!

Gravel and bike camping on the Surly!

The Fuji:
This is the bike most of you have seen me on. I got this bike during a summer in graduate school. It had one great summer of riding and then sat longing to be ridden. Years passed and I moved from New Haven to San Francisco and finally to Chicago. That’s when I met John Castro. He brought me out to my first Saturday ride and from there I was hooked. I feel so lucky to be able to ride with a team full of such welcoming, friendly, funny and talented riders. The occasional free beer also helps.

Sadly in June I’m relocating to San Francisco with The Minjy (not a bike, a person, specifically my girlfriend). Other bikes might might come and go in my life but I’ll always be a Spidermonkey. Soon Spidermonkey Orange will grace the climbs of Marin County.

P.S.this is an open invitation to join me any time you’re out that way.

To quote the great Cal Naughton Jr. : “we go together like cocaine and waffles”

Vincent and Trenta MTB'ing

Vincent and Trenta MTB’ing

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