Mike Creed is a 28 year old pro with the Rock Racing team. He has raced on both the road and track, where he picked up multiple national championships. He has been a pro since 2000, and has raced with Prime Alliance, US Postal and Discovery, TIAA-CREF and Slipstream, and Rock Racing. We recognized him as he talked to his wife at the SRM booth, and we asked if he would answer a few questions.
VCN: Why are you here?
MC: Because my wife is here, I mean I leave like how many times during the year and she leaves once for like four days and I’m like “What the fuck am I gonna do? Oh, I guess I’ll go with you…”
VCN: How many days were you on the road this year? A couple hundred?
MC: I dunno, I did like 80 days of racing so it wasn’t so bad, you could make it sound worse than it is. Here (in the US) it’s usually only like a two hour flight from home, it’s not like we’re racing on the moon or anything.
VCN: Near the end of the US pro race, I remember watching the coverage, you were on the descent and I think there was a Slipstream, maybe Lucas (Euser) trying to gap you off the back and you were like, “What the hell are you doing?”
MC: Don’t get me wrong I like Slipstream riders, but me and JV we have a little history. It’s funny because I think JV sometimes convinces his guys they have the right to do whatever the fuck they want to do. Look, you guys have three guys in the break and you’re tearing everyone’s legs off and you want us to pull…? And Lucas is saying something like, “This is a really good opportunity”. For you motherfucker not for me! (laughs) Yeah, this is a great opportunity! (laughing)
So he was asking me why I wasn’t pulling and I was like, one: you guys are flying, and two: I got Tyler and, I don’t know if you guys know this guy…I’ve got a guy back there…who has a nickname of ‘Fast’ on my team and he didn’t get that for nuthin’. Fast Freddie.
VCN: So you were like, “Yeah you could take me there and you could beat me…”
MC: No so I’m like, look, if you want this to work you should probably not worry about me and get on with it because last time I checked yelling at someone to pull through never worked. I’m a sensitive guy I like my feelings respected.
VCN: You wounded my feelings.
MC: Yeah you know it really hurt when you talked to me like that.
VCN: At San Francisco, when you put the bike above your head…
MC: That ruled (laughs).
VCN: What was the deal, you had been away for so long, you caught me and here I am..
(Mike’s wife Julie breaks in: “Yeah, get me a job!”) Correction: Mike’s wife’s name is Amy not Julie. We’re idiots.
MC: Yeah, hire me.
VCN: Was that your last race with Disco?
VCN: Did Lance give you the pink slip himself?
MC: Well yeah he kinda called up and he brings everyone in a line and says everyone with a contract please take a step forward…(puts hands on Schmalz’s shoulders) “not so fast Mike”. He does a Red Rose ceremony like The Bachelor.
He has the camera on the set and I’m like, “You know I really felt like we had a connection, (in a mock crying voice) you didn’t really give me a fair chance!”
VCN: I think you could write the next Toto.
MC: I was like, that was a whole bunch of things, I don’t think I’ve ever been so angry for a week in a row, solid. It was a cascade of events, I was sick all year and I was getting let go but I still had to go to all these handshake meetings for people who just love the team. So for like five days in a row you are just hearing about “isn’t the team great, it’s just great isn’t it, it’s an awesome team!?” Finally after five days I just cracked and wanted to make people feel awkward so I just said, “Yeah I got fired.” They look at you and they are like, “Yeah…that’s too…bad.”
VCN: “And do you know where Levi is?”
MC: (laughs) It was that and I was talking to other teams and they were really condescending. It was a whole series of just…
VCN: Who did you go to the year after you were with Disco?
MC: It was Slipstream.
VCN: How did you do that? Was it just knowing JV?
MC: Yeah, it was just knowing him yeah.
VCN: So most of getting a new job is it like you just call everyone you know and say you got a place? You know of a job? Do you make a test video for reality shows?
MC: Yeah it’s like the videos you make for speed dating services, I’m willing to be a total shill and pretend like I like you for minimum wage. I will pretend Dave (Zabriske) is funny. If you really listen to him, he kind of has that Robin Williams thing going where people just expect him to be funny so he doesn’t really have to be funny, he can just move his hands a little and everyone is falling down laughing, “Isn’t he a genius?!”
So I was so angry that final week they wanted me to work for George or something and I was like, in the final race you want me to work for one of these guys making millions of dollars?! So when I attacked they were in the radio telling me to stop.
VCN: Very motivational.
MC: It was like I wish I had a recording, finally it became Lorenzo saying, “Mike there is a group behind you, wait…Mike save your energy”, ’til finally Mike became a different guy in a different team, like an abstract guy. But he didn’t stop talking to me. And we are going to have to smile about it afterwards and pretend it was part of the plan.
VCN: So when you got caught you just lifted your bike in the air.
MC: Yes ’cause Lorenzo finally drove up to me in the car and he said, “Man you look pissed!” And there was a sponsor in the car. And I said, “Yeah what do you want I got fucking fired what do you want?” I don’t know where lifting the bike came in. I’m not a sentimental guy but you’re riding off the front and you got the whole of San Francisco to ride around all to yourself, like this is really really neat.
VCN: So at Rock Racing is there a certain level of rad-ness you have to maintain throughout the year?
MC: It really helps if you find dweebs and geeks and you beat up on them and take their lunch money and beat up on them, “C’mere four eyes”, we like to get in street fights.
VCN: Do they give you jeans?
MC: Yeah, they do.
VCN: Are you in them now? Are these officially sanctioned jeans you are wearing?
(Julie says “I think those are from Target”) Once again, Amy. I guess now’s a bad time to ask her for an SRM?
MC: Well, ummm take my picture from the waist up. His shirt though, I got the shirt.
VCN: Were you at the booth this year?
MC: No I didn’t know they were coming. I didn’t tell them I was coming. It kind of was all coincidental. I like being just beneath the radar, that’s where I like to be, not a lot of spotlight. I like to be liked. What’s that tool where it has nine…
VCN: Swiss army knife.
MC: Yeah I’m not that good to look at but I’m pretty usable.
VCN: You’re a five tool player.
MC: I get to be used in a lot of different scenarios, you often don’t miss me till you need me.