Posts

Showing posts from 2014
Image
The sweetness of desire, relief, pride, exhaustion; It’s hard to put into words just what it felt like to Win the Mountain Bike World Championships on Saturday in Hafjell, Norway. I often get asked what race victory is sweetest and I think I now have a clear answer, Worlds 2014.   Every victory, be it your first World cup top-20 or a win at any level is sweet, the reward & validation of your efforts; but this win was 2 years in the making.   After a heartbreaking ride in London, It was a 2-year process for me to return to the rider I am capable of being. In the beginning of my career, winning was easier. Not because the competition was weaker, but because I didn’t know better.   I didn’t have to get results, I just had to do my best and I always wanted to give my best. I loved it. It was fun. I raced with desire, confidence & belief. Sometimes the key ingredient of success is the thing we do unconsciously.   Loving doing something so much that it does not feel
Image
  After an amazing 12 days in France it was time to be lining up for World Cup finals.  I loved the area and the course.  There were 3 good climbs and some very fun technical, nuanced descending.  I was riding clean and smooth in training and looking forward to using the descents to my advantage. The race started well and I climbed into the chase group with Gunn-Rita and Pauline, Jolanda having already escaped off the front with her amazing starting abilities.  I was climbing well, but without my Windham fire.  Whether it was a bit of the altitude, training load or just race tension I started flailing when I entered the technical sections.  My ego and descending skills are closely connected:-) and I won't lie and pretend it wasn't distracting to be riding so poorly in the woods. Pretty much every lap I was making a time costly mistake or getting caught behind another rider making one. I never really found my flow but rather bridged and chased all day.  That being said; on

MSA, Windham, Europe adventures

Image
It has been a pretty hectic month.  But now I sit with Keith in our mountain apartment for the week in Meribel France enjoying the very non-hectic side of being a bike racer.  Training and relaxing in the mountains. Balcony view Above Meribel:  Rode up to 2300m then came down a trail that is best in hiking boots Most trips to Europe I make are full of course prep and recovery rides.  After a month of mostly racing, race prep and travel though it was time to log some solid training to maintain my form for World Champs.  So Keith and I headed straight over to France after the World Cup in Windham. I couldn't be happier with the way the last block of racing went.  Winning Nationals and regaining the maple leaf jersey, winning commonwealth Games, a fantasy accomplishment to follow in the footsteps of my Canadian Predecessors Marie Helene Premont and Chrissy Redden.  (Since mtb has been in the Games, Canadian women have not relinquished the gold) and then a 2nd and 1st at the

Commonwealth Games

Image
Photo by Rob jones Moving into the Village After two good training sessions in Ontario after nationals, Max and I were off to the airport to connect with Emily and Raphael for our flight to Glasgow Wednesday night.   (Max and I stayed to check out the mtb athlete accommodations for the Pan Am Games next summer and enjoy the local riding). At the airport we were escorted to the front with special commonwealth athlete status. Bonus! Quickly, we were settled into the 6hr flight to Glasgow where we were greeted by Games staff at the airport, again streamlined through customs, accreditation and were met by our bags on the other side.   You could really get used to that level of service! With time to grab a coffee we were on a bus with athletes from track and field and headed to the village where Ian Hughes from Cycling Canada was there to meet us after security.   Getting into a games village is very similar to going through airport security. Ian gave us a tour of t

Back to Maple

Image
Emily Batty, me, Sandra Walter. Photos by Marc Landry This weekend I regained the right to wear the maple leaf on my Luna kit.  Being National Champion is something I have always cherished.  It was tough, not being able to challenge for it last year, but luckily Canada has another great Champion in Emily Batty who wore it well.   Not much space between Emily and I for the first 3 laps. Photo Jeremy Allen This year's battle for the Championship was fast and furious.  From the Start Emily, myself and Sandra Walter distanced ourselves from the field.  Within 10 minutes it was down to Emily and I duking it out.  When we entered the 2nd lap and there was no sign that Emily had any intention of getting dropped I started to wonder if and how I was going to be able to pull off the win. On lap 3 Emily surged to the front, I retook the lead, she countered and overtook me, it was awesome racing.  I knew I was going to have to make a big move to create separation so saved up and gav

My week as Domestique

Image
Luna teammate, Maghalie Rochette and I just wrapped up a week of racing at the BC Bike Race (BCBR).  It was my third time doing this awesome event where we race hours of the best BC single track every day for a week.  The first time I did BCBR, it was with my teammate Katerina Nash.   We were evenly paired in fitness and technical skill and raced our buts off for 7 days straight to stay ahead of Lea Davison and Alison Sydor.   In 2010, we had a bit of a “Dream team” in the mixed category as I paired up with my Olympic teammate Geoff Kabush.   Rather than having to share the load on the fire roads, I sat in his comfortable draft and did my best everywhere else to give him some good training. This year, I was the stronger teammate physically and technically.   I would be domestique trying to get my protected rider from point A to point B as quickly as possible, but also at a rate that she would be able to complete the week…. And at a rate that wouldn’t have her throwing death