Look who's back
from the dead! Jon "Tibor" Rentschler, we go back a long way. Jon and I met at Lubrizol back in the 80's when he was doing the boiler water treatment engineering program there. He came to work one day and one of my co-workers said "hey that guy that does the boiler treatments is out there and has this sweet bike in the back of his cargo van with an even sweeter motocross bike in there too". I had to go out and look and sure enough I looked through the back window and there was this all Dura Ace Merlin with some Mavic Helium wheels and a big KTM motocross bike, I was like I gotta meet this guy, it's not everyday that someone comes into Lubrizol with anything fancier than mine, except Derek, but that wasn't til years later.. Anyway I hunted him down which wasn't too difficult and introduced myself and we started to talk about bikes and motorcycles and all the other stuf that goes along with it.
He invited me to ride with him and the group that he rode with in Chardon one evening and we all got along very well and ended up riding and racing together for quite a few years. One year though Jon said I'm done riding my bicycle and I'm going into motorcycle racing full time. Jon raced trials and hare scrambles while we were riding bikes and he was a VERY good GNCC (Grand National Cross Country) racer. GNCC is basically the same as a mountain bike race but with high powered dirt bikes, so it wasn't like he was just making a cold leap into full time motorcycle racing.
He had some nice sponsors and traveled all across the country racing the GNCC circuit and earned National Ranking in his racing divison which was Senior Vet A, equivilant to our Masters A or 40-45 Masters. That pretty much ended our riding together. He tried to get me into GNCC but I didn't want to throw the whole bicycle thing out the window and travel all over the country and get my ass kicked at every event, so I stuck to bicycles (I know, I get my ass kicked there too) and Jon stuck to motorcycles for a long time. We talked and saw each other but didn't ride together anymore.
Just recently Jon called me up and said, "dude, I wanna ride my bike again" but my Merlin is so out of date that I'm even ashamed to ride it on the hoopie ride on the bike path. Jon now lives in Mahoning County and frequently sees the likes of Sal Ponzio, John Fiumura and the guys from MVC. I said thats easy enough, stop by Bike Authority and talk to the guys there and they'll hook you up with whatever you're looking for and it will all be good and we can start riding together again. He did just that and got a new Cervelo SLC with all Red components, new shoes, helmet and even wanted to as far as getting a CSC team kit. I said that's where you have to slam on the brakes! No team kit! If you do, I'm not riding with you, you'll have to sport that outfit on the bike path down in Canfield.........I think he secretely did order it though and he'll pull it out on our next Wednesday night ride....
We've now been riding on Wednesday nights for the past few weeks and it's been great, like old times, but just not as hard. Jon had a double hip replacement over the winter courtesy of all the hard GNCC racing he has done over the years. He had his hips replaced at the Cleveland Clinic over the winter and is now riding his bicycle pain free and is even going to break back into bicycle racing next year when he has the okay from his doctor to start putting full pressure on his hips. I would say he is doing pretty awesome already, we've done a couple 30+ mile rides together and have averaged 18 1/2 mph. on both of them.
Welcome back buddy!