NOTE: lots of video in the extended entry
update: forgot to thank erik the first time around for the heads up about the event. Thanks!
d and I went up to SF to watch Levi speak at Lombardi Sports. It was primarily an event held for Colorado Altitude Training's Shaun Wallace to promote his products, with Levi chiming in on how he uses altitude tents in his training and how they've improved his metabolism and recovery.
But I was there primarily to hear from Levi, so I was happy when Q&A came around and talk of altitude training died down a bit. There were of course plenty of questions and rephrased questions as to Basso vs. his role on the team. Levi admitted he was surprised that Discovery signed Basso, but he hasn't given up his hopes for the Tour de France. Noting that many teams run with two leaders, Levi seems to be taking a two-phased wait-and-see approach: wait and see if Basso/Discovery survive the current uproar, and wait and see who is the strongest come Tour time.
I couldn't resist my own take on the question: "much has been said about the tension with Basso, but I'm more concerned about the Tour of California. If I recall correctly, George hunted you down on Sierra Road. Is there going to be a little West Coast vs. East Coast this Tour of California? Are you going to uphold California's honor?" Levi answered my joking question with an interesting fact about the route: he tried to get the organizers to have the route go up Sierra Road twice and finish at the top, instead of the long, open boulevard run into the finish. As for the rivalry, "George owes me one."
Levi was surprised by one questioner who had inside information on Levi's wind tunnel session. Apparently, Levi's new time trial position has the lowest drag they have ever seen in that particular wind tunnel. After getting over the surprise at this 'top secret' information getting out, Levi noted that he can only use the new position on straights and he hasn't quite figured out if he can really ride it outside the wind tunnel.
(continue reading for video)
Notes on videos
I had to delete the start of the talk in favor of more Levi. The start of the talk was mostly Shaun Wallace extolling the benefits of his altitude tents and talking about how he came to discover the benefits of training at sea level while resting at altitude, i.e. you want to train at full oxygen levels but rest at reduced oxygen levels for maximum benefit.
I'm also missing Levi's response to my question; my camera devilishly decided to run out of memory as I was asking my question.
Shaun Wallace argues the idea that altitude tents are doping is ridiculous, noting that they level the playing field between countries with altitude and those that don't, and also attacking Dick Pound as the only person at WADA against them:
Levi talks about his own use of altitude tents and the benefits he's noticed, such as improved metabolism and better recovery. Shaun Wallace also talks about a study in Australia that demonstrated the improved recovery:
Levi talks about using the altitude tents mostly for preparation, though he did use it during the Tour of Catalunya:
Levi talks about who on Discovery uses altitude tents. He also mentions that he has friends in Santa Rosa use them, but don't want others to know:
Levi Leipheimer's wife answers a question about how to get wives to allow their husbands to install altitude tents over their bed:
Shaun Wallace talks more on how altitude tents improve performance and shows off a tent setup next to the stage:
Levi on Basso+Discovery, Tour de France:
Levi on his top secret wind tunnel results:
Levi on multiple testing labs:
Levi on why cycling gets attacked more than other sports:
Levi answers a series of questions that basically deal with what his race schedule for the season will be like. Levi talks about wanting to win the Tour of California, Dauphine, Tour de France, and Tour of Germany. He also mentions doing the Tour de Georgia:
Levi talks about his Specialized Tarmac vs. Trek Madone:
Another Levi vs. George vs. Basso question. Levi: "I'm pretty sure I'll let George be the #1 rider at Paris-Roubaix." Plus: the very beginning of my question before my camera runs out of space.
More Levi Q&A: