Those astute observers of my race on Sunday would have noticed that I won the thing on a pit wheel. While Zipp 404s aren't bad, I do like my Ksyriums with the Challenge Grifos on them. I glued them with help from a team mate, and they have served me well all season. However, a major drawback of the Grifos was one of them came with a long stem, while the other came with a short stem. This is a problem since I could not get a pump on the short stem one without losing lots of air or using an adapter.
So, I am pumping up my tire on Sunday and trying to take the adapter off when the valve snaps. About 15 minutes before my race. After a quick visit to the pit and a trial run of the Zipp, off I went into the history books.
Today I cruised by Landry's to see if anything could be done for the tire. Verdict is that the stem can't be replaced. Let's call Bikeman and see what can be done since this is where I bought it. I'm told by the very helpful people at Bikeman that they get the tires they way they are produced at the factory in Thailand. The batches that they've been getting have short stems on them. The only way to fix them is by taking the valve core out, putting an extender on it, etc., etc., etc.
However, all is not lost! I am told that there is a service called Tire Alert that will fix your tubbies. So, I am left with a tubbie that is in need of a new tube and resew. It just so happened that when the tire was deflated there was some peelage going on at one part of the tube. I was actually able to peel the tire off the rim by hand in the store. Hmm, looks like I was living on borrowed time. But, they lasted a whole season without rolling off the rim, which is more than I can say for A LOT of people, and you know who you are.
Searching around the web for some OUTSTANDING deals on the Grifos didn't turn up anything too spectacular. But, it is the end of the season. I have plenty of time to think about it and plan my next move.