Showing posts from April, 2007


Here are a couple pics so you can envision the course. Today was hot and sunny again with a pretty good wind. Mical and I woke up at 7:30...only 7hrs till race time!!! The waiting begins. Aftyer breakfast and reading outside for a bit so the guys could get more beauty sleep we passed the morning prepping for the race, but mostly watching tV or reading. My legs weren't feeling too bad after yesterday's 30 min at max. I lined up beside Mical, the gun went off, a couple seconds later Mical and Katerina and a couple girls were down in a crash. My start went okay though and I was quickly top ten. I found a good wheel to follow in Jen Smith, but noticed she was slower on the climbs and corners so fitrst descent climb I got by her. I was climbing strong and able to reel in a couple girls. Sitting about 8th I followed a couple girls down the descent, but again needed to get by. At one point I was up to 5th, but Katerina came back from her crash and all the pulling I had been

NMBS 2 Short Track

Saturday was the short track. We got to race at 10:45 which made temperatures nicer. After a good warm up we lined up. Legs felt heavy and slow to warm up, but I was ready to race. My call up was still decent after my 19th place finish in Phoenix and I got off to a pretty good start. Mical was lined up beside me and I saw her miss her pedal off the start, but she was passing me before the first corner and I got to watch how she navigated traffic…a weakness of mine. It was crazy dusty and I just followed the dust cloud knowing my dually would suck up any unexpected bumps that might be hiding in the dust. After the straight we did a hard right up a steep little climb, along a flat, two hairpins and a short fast descent into a left hander. One more right hander through some sand and we were back at the start/finish. Luna and Gary fisher girls were off the front with a chase group involving Wendy and Mical in pursuit. I was chasing the Chase group. All the loosed corners lead t

California and races to come

Hey Guys, keep an eye on Pedal magazine for race previews and updates from me. I'm now pretty red in the face from the sun -35 degrees today, but definitely enjoying my time in California. The Santa Barbara airport looked more like a villa with baggage claim and gate entries outside. My first night I unpacked my bike and quickly found myself by the ocean. The city is covered with bike paths. I spun through Uof C Santa Barbara and have never seen so many cruiser bikes in one place. It was awesome. The University is right on the water and pretty appealing. I soloed that first night and spent my time catching up on sleep from a busy couple of days. I met up with Matt H and Mical D and we headed the 49 miles North to the race venue in Santa Ynez. matt and I did 2 laps of the course which was brutally windy. After one lap I new my suspension a lot better and took atleast 10 psi out of both my front and rear. The course is very open and not technical although I did blow

NEW BIKES !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I just picked up my new bikes Monday. Yeah! They are awesome. I’ve only ridden my sub 23lb hardtail up and down the street getting it dialed in for fit, but took the Faze off road Tuesday and was so impressed I decided to take it to the next 2 NMBS –formerly called Norba races. Being a bit of a die hard Hardtail rider I knew I had to dive in and race the dually now to give it a fair chance for #1 bike to my heart. It feels really great climbing, which is what your racing concern would be with a dually, shockingly so actually. With the propedal on I could swear I’m on a HT, but then I hit a descent and yup I’ve got the advertised 89-114mm of travel (approx 4-5 in). It looks freaking Gorgeous too and handles smoothly. So what’s new with the Norco XC bikes this year? Although they’re looking flashier and sexier than ever, the Geometry is still very similar so you know you’re getting that same great feel. There are some small, but noteworthy changes. They have switched to triple butted M6

Thanks Mark AKA Big Rig

Mark and Neil on the 2006 Sea Otter Trip The Norco Team got the unfortunate news that we would be losing our team manager Mark Schmid this month. He and his family are moving out of province. Mark’s enthusiasm, hard work and belief in his team have been really appreciated during his time as Manager since 2005 and we’re all bummed to see him go. Best of Luck Mark on your next life Adventure!!!

Spoke N Motion Women’s Dirt Clinic a Huge Success

44 Women from the Kamloops area attended the 6th annual Women’s Mtb skills clinic developed and organized by local bike Shop owners Paul and Carolyn Berry. I teamed up with guest coach Eladee Brown and the staff from Spoke N Motion to offer skills coaching to three ability based groups. It was amazing to see the change in the women’s confidence levels as the day progressed. Women who initially looked tentative on descents were confidently working on manuals off of obstacles by the end of the 5 hr clinic. It was awesome to see so many enthusiastic women riders and to be able to share some of my experience with new riders. I think this could really expand our Tuesday group rides!

Whoa, Female Athlete of the Year

Last night was the Kamloops Sports Hall of Fame Banquet. I had been nominated for “Female Athlete of the Year”. Quite an honour to be nominated when so new to this community. Never having been to a Sports Banquet before I had no idea it would be so well attended. I should have guessed though with this being the Tournament Capitol of Canada. Anyhow it was Friday and I still didn’t have a ticket for Keith…no problem I thought I’ll just call to order one. Well all 380 seats had been sold out, but I was on the waiting list. At 6:30 Friday night I got Keith a ticket for the following evening. It was a fun night with drinks at 6, dinner at 7, awards, speeches and slideshows. I steered clear of the wine until after Female of the Year was awarded on the off chance I would have to give a speech. The slideshow for my category began and I became increasingly more nervous. I had some pretty stiff competition, but the announcement came and I was up to accept my award. Female athlete of the Year. Wo

Shout out to FEE

Norco Teammate Fion Griffiths finished 2nd in the Sea Otter DH, just 1.4 seconds off GB’s Rachel Atherton. Yeehaa 1. Rachel Atherton (GBR, Commencal) 2:33.5 2. Fionn Griffiths (GBR, Norco) 2:34.9 3. Melissa Buhl (USA, KHS) 2:36.2 4. Sabrina Jonnier (FRA, Monster Iron Horse) 2:36.4 5. Kathy Pruitt (USA, Jamis) 2:37.1

Back in the Loops

We had our first women’s mtb ride of the year on Tuesday and had a lot of fun. The Pine Beetle has really damaged one of my favorite ride spots though- Dufferin. Many of the dead tress fell from the high winds we had this winter and others were cut for safety reasons, but they are currently lying all over the trails so we had to do a bit of tree skirting. Training got derailed a bit this week as I got a 24 hr bug –sore muscles all over, fevery chills and sweats and an uncomfortable stomach…which has hung on until easter and makes the thought of chocolate a little less fun, but not out of the question. Worked Wednesday to friday although Thursday I was pretty useless with my bug. Friday after work I got in a recovery spin with Keith in our sunny 25 degrees before heading to Revelstoke for the long weekend. In Revelstoke we’ve had great weather too. 18 degrees both days. Even though there are huge snowbanks in town still Mt Cartier was clear for riding. It has to be the most brutal early

NMBS # 1

I had an awesome trip to Arizona and am feeling excited for the season and summer! 72 elite women lined up for the first cross country race of the US national series Sunday in Arizona. It was a hot day with temperatures in the mid 30’s or 96F. There was a bit of a headwind which actually cooled things down and added a little element to racing. I got off to a descent start, but could definitely feel last night’s maximal effort in my legs. I actually felt pretty gross the first 25 minutes of racing and was wondering how I was possibly going to finish 3 laps, but the longer I rode the better I felt and the stronger I was able to race. The first lap was spent trying to move through traffic without hitting a cactus or getting caught up in loose dirt. Willow and I started riding together by the end of lap 1, but then she faded and I was semi alone again until Mical charged up to me early-mid lap 2. She was able to gap me but by the end of that lap I was reeling her in and passed her