Words by Terry Buchanan, Photos by my friends
This is my Mudhoney SL. The word “my” is very important in describing this bike as it was built for me and every time I ride it this fact is clear. The fit, pedaling dynamics, silent ride and perfect handling push me to the conclusion, “this is the best bike I have ever owned”.
Zac built this bike for me at the end of cyclocross season in 2010 before he and I were business partners at CBS and I still worked at Buchanan General Contracting. We designed the bike to be a straight up cyclocross race bike. I had indicated I wanted a new bike for the 2011 season and Zac says, “Let’s build it right now. Seven can ship it in three weeks and you can race it at Cornwall Park in January.” And that was the “start” of “my 2011 cyclocross season” (I hadn’t trained since November).
Cornwall Park in Bellingham was my first race on the bike. I led most my race on the new bike until the last lap, faded and finished fourth. To this day it is still one of my favorite race days. I knew then we had achieved my goals for the bike:
- Fast, aggressive handling as I tend to drive a bike more than steer a bike as a one time track and criterium racer.
- Drivetrain rigidity that would rival the Scandium Redline I had been racing at the time.
- I needed more compliance. I wanted my lower back to survive races and felt I needed a bike that kept the wheels planted through rough terrain.
- Timeless style! A brushed titanium bike when dressed up with the right finishing touches has few rivals for timeless style.
- I bike that was easy to clean and take care of. As a dad of two young & super active sons cleaning and taking care of my bikes was not an easy thing to do at that time. Somehow titanium bikes are just easier to clean.
So this is my Mudhoney SL. I have raced cyclocross on it as designed but the bike has become so much more over the past five years. Currently I use it as fendered road bike. It has explored the dirt roads of the Methow Valley with me. Many a summer morning training ride for the “next” cyclocross season in parks unnamed has been done with my Mudhoney. The bike has even been raced home to get a car to transport a good friend home after breaking an ankle.
I truly love this bike. Will always have this bike. It seems corny but I am blessed to own this bike. Carl Richards of the New York Times recently wrote an article “The Financial Benefits of Buying What you Love” that fully studies, explains and proves my relationship with my Seven Mudhoney SL (except I never had buyer’s remorse!). Read it. Every time he says “me” he could be saying “Terry”.