An Open Letter to the Eventual Winner of the “Race on the Fatty/Levi Team” at Boggs

09.29.2014 | 9:50 am

Dear Lucky Eventual Winner,

First off, I should probably remind you: you have only a few more days to enter the contest to win a trip to Northern California. The one that is benefitting the Forget Me Not Farm. The contest ends Thursday at 11:55pm PT, October 2

But the real reason I am writing you is that I feel I owe you an apology. Not for the fact that you have just won an incredible all-expenses-paid vacation at Boggs, a suite of races — a hill climb, an eight-hour team relay, and a downhill race — in a beautiful location. A race which sells out almost as soon as it opens.

No, I am not apologizing to you for that. Why would I? 

What I am apologizing to you, Lucky Winner, is for what some people might call my excessive exuberance during this event. For my tendency to…shall we say…allow my cup of happiness to overflow. And to slop around and make a bit of a mess, to speak quite frankly.

I recognize now, from the below recent conversation which I had with Levi Leipheimer and his duly appointed legal representative Greg Fisher, that I can celebrate, from time to time, perhaps overmuch. 

Please, allow me to explain what I expect the weekend to be like.

And to ask for your understanding in advance.

Upon Your Arrival

When you arrive in either the San Francisco or the Oakland airport on Thursday, May 30, I will do my best to be waiting there for you, with my arms open wide. If I cannot be there, I will find someone who is approximately the same height and weight as me to take my place.

Whether we embrace or give each other an enthusiastic handshake is up to you. High-fives are not on the table, due difficulties I have with eye-hand coordination.

From there, we shall whisk you away to Santa Rosa, driving in a reasonably-priced automobile, which will be equipped with both air conditioning and a stereo. 

We will take the greatest care to make the automobile comfortable for you, by removing fast food wrappers before your arrival, and adjusting a combination of air conditioning dials and car windows to reach a temperature you find acceptable.

I will see to it personally that the stereo is tuned to play the radio station of your choosing.

An Evening of Luxury

Once you are in Santa Rosa, I will take you to NorCal Bikesport, where we will fit you for the bicycle you will use during this weekend. It will be the very finest in mountain bicycles, and the people at NorCal will treat you with the respect you would expect when you are my guest. 

No. With more respect than you would expect to be given a guest of mine. If that is even possible.

Then we shall pay a visit to the Forget Me Not Farm. Odessa Gunn will perhaps give us a tour. Levi Leipheimer will perhaps saddle up and ride a llama. It will be an unforgettable afternoon, which will be topped off with a dinner at the franchised restaurant of your choosing. 

If you like, you may even order a dessert.

High-Class Camping in a Recreational Vehicle

But your trip has just begun, for on the next day, after staying at a hotel — you need not worry, we will have separate rooms — we shall board a rented recreational vehicle, which has been stocked with tools, our bicycles, and BikeMonkey staff to wait upon our every need.

Also, there will be food. And pie of multitudinous variety, including but not limited to your favorite three flavors. We will feast on pie, you and I.

And I may very well grill bratwurst. Stranger things have happened.

We shall park at a primo spot, and then you, Levi, and I will walk around like we own the place. 

Don’t worry, Levi is actually quite well-behaved, once you defeat him in a contest of some sort. I recommend a staring contest or indian leg wrestling.

We shall pick out spots for sleeping in this RV. I shall let you pick first. And if Levi tries to take your spot, well, he’ll get what’s coming to him.

The Hill Climb

When you and I embark upon the hill climb race on the first day, I shall do everything I can to ensure you do well in the race. This is includes attaching one end of a strong cord to Levi’s seatpost and the other end to your handlebar.

I’m very interested in your success, Contest Winner. Very interested indeed.

After this effort concludes, we’ll dine on all-beef frankfurters (or a substitute hotdog-shaped vegetable product, if that’s your choice) and soft drinks. Also, there may be alcoholic beverages to drink, as long as you promise to drink no more than Levi’s body weight (84 pounds).

The Main Event

I will do my utmost to not snore while sleeping in our RV, eventual winner, though you must cut me some slack in this regard. Once I’m asleep, there’s really not much I can do about it. Feel free to nudge me if necessary.

In the morning, I shall scramble you some eggs, or pour milk on your breakfast cereal. I am a versatile man, and will go out of my way to ensure your happiness.

Then it will be time for us to race in the 8 Hour Relay Event. I’ll go first. Or Levi will. Or you can. It’s your call entirely, for you are the boss. Don’t let Levi intimidate you into thinking he is the boss, because he is not. 

If you want to go fast like some kind of crazy person, I am all for that, and will follow your lead, absolutely gutting myself in order to win glory for our team.

Levi has indicated he will do the same.

Likewise, however, if you prefer just to relax and rid a lap or two at an easy pace, that’s what we will do. The long and short of it is, we will figure out what would make a race fun for you, and then we will go out and have that fun.

And if I get a little bit too enthusiastic and sometimes annoy those around me due to my yipping and hopping around from foot to foot, I hope you will find it in your heart to forgive me. I am who I am.

No matter how fast — or how relaxed — we go, however, I can guarantee you one thing: that we will win our division. The reason I can make such a guarantee is that we will have a division of our very own.

We’re going up on the podium, you and I. Yes we are.

The Super D

I understand that we have the option to race a downhill event. I intend to spectate. I know what I’m good at, after all, and what I’m not.

If you choose to race, however, I will cheer you on with all the enthusiasm you could ever hope for or want.

Or indeed, tolerate.

Our Parting

You and I will become melancholy on the trip back to the airport, knowing that our weekend is at a close. And yet we will be grateful for the moments we have shared.

There is no chance we will not embrace.

I look forward to our adventure together. As does Levi. As will you. So you’d better donate now. Before it’s too late (For example, Friday is too late).

Kind Regards,

The Fat Cyclist 


  1. Comment by BostonCarlos (formerly NYC) | 09.29.2014 | 1:19 pm

    What if my desire is to relax and let you and Levi gut yourselves on the course? :-P

    Then it shall be done. And if Levi gives you any lip, I shall intervene on your behalf. – FC

  2. Comment by Tom in Albany | 09.29.2014 | 2:01 pm

    Dear future racing partners,

    Beware! My wife claims I snore in a very profound manner.

    Sincerely, Your future racing partner!

  3. Comment by davidh-Marin,ca | 09.29.2014 | 2:28 pm

    So, no Women’s Team? Odessa, Lisa, and AKChick(’cause we all want her to win-just so we can see her again) and to watch them outrace the ‘old’ guys.

  4. Comment by Clydesteve | 09.29.2014 | 2:48 pm

    ooo, ooo, what Carlos said!…

  5. Comment by UpTheGrade, SR, CA | 09.29.2014 | 2:59 pm

    Is it true that when Levi over-indulges on that vegetable stuff he drinks, that he is wont to sing lusty ballads by the campfire on those trips to the woods you and he are known to take?

    ‘Cause it would be worth donating just for a chance to see that! (and for the Pie of course)

    If I win my plan would be to set a course record, and since I’m a bit slow, that means you guys better start training now! And no more eating that junk food, banana chips etc, ’cause I need you in top form. So daily hill repeats from now until May and vegetable drinks all round. See you at Boggs.

  6. Comment by Doug (way upstate NY) | 09.29.2014 | 3:20 pm

    Hey Carlos he was talking to me this time. :)

  7. Comment by Randy | 09.29.2014 | 5:01 pm

    High five problems? I strongly recommend watching this.

  8. Comment by NZ Ev | 09.29.2014 | 5:10 pm

    I can’t wait to win and fly in from NZ and dictate how I want the weekend to go with my new favorite team mates . . .

  9. Comment by Andy@wdw | 09.29.2014 | 5:46 pm

    Guaranteed way to never miss a high five: focus on the other person’s elbow. It sounds illogical, but it really works! Go try it right now with The Hammer, or one or both of the twins!

  10. Comment by Skye | 09.29.2014 | 6:23 pm

    I perked up when I read the part about feasting on pie…

  11. Comment by AKChick | 09.29.2014 | 8:09 pm

    If I win, you will be getting a huge hug upon my arrival, probably throughout the trip and upon my leaving. :) Do they allow coed teams cause if not, I might have to sit out the race (which given how competitive you and Levi are, might be a good thing cause A) I am not a MTBer B) I am SLOW on a road bike and even slower on a MTB C) If the temp is above 75, I will probably die of heat stroke).

    Also, have to share with people who can appreciate it that I just placed an order for my dream bike (Giant Avail Advanced SL 1). IT HAS ELECTRONIC SHIFTING AND DISC BRAKES! And is high end carbon. :) :) :) And is a road bike. SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

  12. Comment by AKChick | 09.29.2014 | 8:12 pm

    PS davidh so sorry I didn’t give notice I was coming down. I didn’t have time to drive to the coast but had to stay in sweaty hot Folsom. They are super nice there though and Folsom Bikes was amazing! Super customer service! Also, can you say bike lanes? I had a serious case of bike lane envy when I saw how many they have there. Amazing!

  13. Comment by UpTheGrade, SR, CA | 09.30.2014 | 8:13 am

    That’s a super nice bike @AKChick. Are you going to come and ride that in the Fondo this weekend? Would be a nice way to break-in the bike!

  14. Comment by AKChick | 09.30.2014 | 9:55 am

    @UpTheGrade Unfortunately, I am not. It’s pretty expensive to fly out of Alaska so I have to plan way in advance. This year’s big trip is our annual trek to Hawaii. :) Unless I win this contest. :)

  15. Comment by BigRedClydesdale | 09.30.2014 | 10:56 am

    For those of us living north of the border, can we enter the contest? I’m assuming if we win we’ll have to shuttle ourselves across the border.

  16. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 09.30.2014 | 11:16 am

    @BigRed… Given the tone of Levi and Mr. Fisher in the attached video, I suspect they are looking to have Fatty cost them as little as possible. I’m putting my money on @UptheGrade, SR,CA (that’s Santa Rosa) as the probable winner at 7-2.

  17. Comment by Jeff-Santa Rosa, CA | 09.30.2014 | 12:22 pm

    I live in Santa Rosa, so no flight cost for me. Ahh, but while I am cheap, I am not free. When I win you will be flying in the friend of my choice, and no awkward hugs from Fatty!

  18. Comment by Susie H | 09.30.2014 | 12:52 pm

    if I win, can i give the riding part of the contest to my husband? thereby ingratiating myself to him for the rest of our lives?

    (not really a mountain biker anymore, even though i don’t have the nerve to buy a road bike yet. i’m really good at catching up to the roadies every 5-6 miles though!)

  19. Comment by Marshmallow | 09.30.2014 | 6:30 pm

    I want this trip so, so badly which 100 percent guarantees I won’t win, no matter how many entries (I am very unlucky like that). But I look forward to reading the race report(s)! And, of course, supporting a great cause.

  20. Comment by davidh-Marin,ca | 10.1.2014 | 10:31 am

    Just ordered some LED Growlights! Boy that ‘discount’ was awesome. But why did they need my mothers maiden name, and only took debit cards? Huh? Great discount though.

  21. Comment by Kathy | 10.8.2014 | 8:04 pm

    So the contest is closed. Does this mean you have picked the winner? ‘Cause I don’t recall getting a phone call yet. Maybe I should check my email account again. I’m warning you, my nickname is Mayhem. I broke my ankle 2 weeks before my first Ironman while in my bike cleats and this year I made it to the start line at Tahoe when it was canceled. I survived the Superfrog 1/2 and Levi’s Medio Willow Creek Route so I think I’m prepared to do a race and get first place out of one. Hoping I missed the email…and phone call…and that you’re just waiting to surprise me.


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