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Showing posts from May, 2007

Pictures!

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Today is beautiful and sunny and the first time I have realized how amazing the view is from Sandra's Balcony. Check out those White caped mountains. The humidity and overcast skies had kept them underwraps untill now. You should be equally impressed that I have been updating my blog when all the tabs and instructions are in German. A little quirk to the blogger program being that it changes languages when it registers your computer is in a new country. The view from our bedroom in Durbach, Germany. Vineyards as far as the eye could see. Sandra behind the wheel of our Audi A3 The hail that greated me my second night in Switzerland. Check out the sky Oh yeah. Sandra prepares a Kaffee lang at the touch of a button

Monday and Swiss delicacies

Today it poured all day. We decided riding easy in the rain would not be a very good recovery exercise so the day was rather focused on food and nursing the bruises and sore spots that seemed to pop up everywhere. It was a national holiday in Switzerland, a catholic holiday we do not observe at home. One of Sandra's relatives who is a professional chef came over and made us a mango stuffed lamb for lunch and Sepp treated Sandra and I to truffles from the local bakery. We are now headed to Solothurn to visit Wendy and Kris at their host families place for a raclette dinner. Raclette is a type of cheese. You melt slices and eat it with potatoes, pickles, pineapple and other things you might not think of putting cheese on but are very tasty together.

Racing the World Cup: Offenburg Germany

Sunday morning the skies were overcast and there was a good breeze. Much nicer racing conditions than 33 and muggy. As we rode over to the race site the first drops of rain started to fall, but lightly. At 10:30 all 110 girls were being corralled into our starting pens based on number. The top 40 positions were based on Houffalize (WC *1) results and then doled out according to UCI points. I was number 94, which was actually better than I expected. Alison Sydor was 80 th so I was hoping to grab here wheel. Fortune was on my side as my number was called and a position behind Alison was still open. She had wisely lined upon the outside to shoot past the traffic that would clog on the inside of turn 1. With 1 minute to go all of the girls behind me had squeezed up into my row and the whole area condensed into a mesh of girls waiting anxiously for the start gun. The gun went off and I kept my eyes glued to Alison’s back. She once told me it didn’t matter where s

Living it up

After arriving on Tuesday in Zurich I was again packed and ready to move on to Germany on Thursday. Sandra and I lucked out with our rental car. They were out of VW Golfs so we got to take an Audi A3. It was a beautiful car. Everything just felt smooth It took us less than 3 hours to get to Offenburg and that was only because I failed as navigator at a crucial moment. Offenburg , literally translates to Open Castle and is the Gate to Germany ’s Black Forest where they boast over 4000km of cycling paths and trails. From Offenburg we drove a couple minutes to the township of Rammerswier , the site of our race, and then further along to Durbach. Along with fellow Canadians Wendy and Kris we had rented the upper floor of a house for 49 euro a night. Pretty sweet deal. Our little apartment was only a 10 minute bike ride from the course. Durbach is known for its great wine especially Riesling. A local winery supplies sample bottles for guests at all loca

Willkommen a Switzerland

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After a fun evening catching up with my friend Dominique and then a morning spent with my best bud heather in Montreal I am again on the road. Me and Dominique YO Y Heather Sandra picked me up this morning at the Zurich airport and drove me back to her uncle’s place near Bern . Thy live on a farm they share with their family. After a very slow bike build…can’t wrench too well on 2 hrs sleep…Sandra and I went off on an explorative spin. Switzerland is an amazing country for road riding. The majority of roads are one or two lanes with no shoulder, but there is little traffic and the drivers are respectful of cyclists. There are so many little roads that we literally picked directions at random. Left, right, down a dirt path, through a field, a forest, past some cows, each with a cow bell chiming. We did end up getting a little lost and more than a little muddy, but the weather was beautiful and sunny and my legs didn’t feel as disgusting as I had expected. We even saw 3 baby foxes.

Trouble staying put

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I don’t seem to be able to spend much time in Kamloops these days. I got back from the Norbas in California and decided I should really add the bromont Canada Cup to my trip to Europe . It would be a chance for me to race my hardtail before the world cup, pick up some UCI points and hopefully prize money. I’d also get to meet our new Eastern Events guy Havy and get at least 3 hourse closer to Switzerland ’s time zone. I found out my parents and brother were all going to be there as an added bonus and I was going to get the chance to see 2 of my favourite girlfriends. Wicked. The only down side was that it meant only one weekend back with Keith before I was off for four weekends! Bromont for the Canada Cup The view of Bromont from our wicked chalet So Wednesday I was all packed up again and on my way to Montreal . I arrived to a very damp, cold and wet Montreal at midnight. Heather was there to pick me up with her sister Marina and we all headed back to her place. After a very short

Revelstoke

How many times can I say that this is one of the greatest places on earth for riding? We headed to Keith’s family home for Mother’s day. Unfortunately we got little time to spend with Sues and Grainger as a trip to Golden got them trapped on the other side of a mudslide and meant an overnight in Golden and a long detour home the Sunday. Keith and I did get in two fantastic rides of 3+ hours of single track though. Saturday my chest was sore like I had done too many push ups, just from pumping the bike through the terrain. I was a single track climbing machine and keith was having trouble loosing me on the descents, just the training I had been looking for. We also got to spend some time with Brendan and Amanda at Float Bikes. The shop was insanely busy so we decided to end the day with some Mt. Begbie Beers and a BBQ. All in all a great weekend.

Short Track

After hitting up the Kids race at 2:00 i got out for a warm up. After the morning's spin my legs weren't feeling too bad. I got off to a descent start and then set to picking girls off as I tried to move up. About 12 minutes in my motivation was starting to wain as I was caught in noman's land between groups. When Emmet and Smith caught up to me though I snapped out of it and fought to stick on their wheels. After a lap together I could tell I was was stronger on the climb up the 4 cross and the last single track section, even on the descent and weaker on the flats so I used this to plan my tactic and was able to narrowly scoop both for the descent last lap and take 14th position. This was a step up from last weekend as I raced smarter and the field was deeper. In my mind this is the best ST course on the circuit because they put energy into making it a good mtb loop rather than a loop around a grassy field. We ahd climbs, descents, burms, jumps so it was fun and i

Top NMBS XC result

Yesterday was my best race of the season as well as my best NMBS result to date. Conditions were pretty close to perfect for the women’s race. It was a comfortable temperature with a slightly cool breeze. We got to race at 11:00, a nice change over last weekend’s 2:45 start. I was called up to the last spot on the front row as I am now ranked 8th in the series. It was the position I least wanted however as it would get me caught on the inside of a tight corner. If I had the ability to get to the corner first I would have been stoked, but knowing the other girls up front can out power me in a short burst I chose to line up slightly behind and between Georgia and Heather. I’m not quite sure what happened in the start, but somehow I got shut out and was nearly down in a crash. I found myself with way more traffic than desirable so I sat in for the short single track section until the road opened up onto pavement and then I hammered. All of a sudden I was up to top 10 and was able

Santa Ynez to Redlands

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Monday Morning Mical, Trish Max and I headed out for a spin in Santa Ynez. We rode a section of the tour of California in Reverse and as we descended down a quiet road through vineyards you could see the names of Basso and a few others still chalked onto the pavement. Road spin in Santa Ynez After the ride we headed towards LA to drop Mical off near the airport as we headed on towards the Beach and then Redlands. We kinds forgot our directions and didn’t have a map so we ended up in downtown LA in a small neighbourhood where Hispanics yelled out “White power” as we drove by in the Rocky Truck. Time to find out where we need to go. We eventually found our way out, dropped Mical off and Headed out to Huntington Beach, but catching all the rough sections of LA on our way there. California is crazy. There are some grotesquely ugly industry areas just miles from great beaches and dilapidated neighbourhoods a block away from clean wealthy ones. Huntigton Beach LA We made it to the beach by