Saturday, June 30, 2007

Day 7.5 - North Pole Race Course

Not that I really thought I wouldn't (there was some doubt for sure) but I am planning on racing tomorrow. My rib feels better although sleeping will be tough for a while. We will see how things hold up in the race although I am hoping for the best. Getting out on the course for the first time yesterday was a good experience rib wise. Not much pain. But if I hit it just right - oh man its like knife is going into me. I am afraid too that there are enough roots on the course that I will not be hitting it "just right" a lot tomorrow. As if racing by itself doesn't hurt enough without dealing with that too. Ah well. Such is life and I am not on my deathbed so I will race.

For those of you that are interested..... the race course is AWESOME and so fun which I will need to remind myself that I said when I am pinned tomorrow. There are banked turns, bridges, rock formations to go over, tunnels, etc. It's like a fun park. It is a 6.2 k loop that turns on itself over and over again at a small ski area 15 minutes outside of St. Felicien. There are many slick roots and ruts along with rocks of course too throughout the loop. That said, there are also super fast banked hard packed sandy sections. Super fun. The lushness, roots, dark mud and wetness remind me of West Virginia NORBA course without all the rain. On that note, it has rained on and off up here all week though and I think for tomorrow its a 60% chance and 13 C. Whatever-my only job is to race, rain or shine. We just got back from the managers meeting and the ladies will be doing 5 laps plus a longer than normal start loop. Gonna be a long hard day in the saddle. Need to go sharpen my elbows......

Day 7 - North Pole

We had to move out of host housing in St. Prime, Quebec and move into the place that we are renting in St. Felicien. Months ago I asked for a 2 bedroom chalet with a kitchenette and was told "pas de probleme"(no problem) and then when we get here we find that we will be "dans la maison avec un homme et deux femmes" (in a house with a man and 2 women). Say what? What happened to my chalet with kitchenette that I booked? Whatever. I am not in the mood to quibble.

So a chaperon from the race organization drove us over to the house which is situated in a neighborhood in St. Felicien. Apparently St. Felicien does not have enough accommodations for the World Cup rif raf so they had to ask their citizens to open their doors. Bottom line is that there is no chalet and we have rooms in a home with the owner still here and 2 other girls. One of the girls goes to school and rents permanently from this guy and the other girl is Laurence Leboucher who will be racing in the World Cup. Ever heard of her? Well she would be a 2 time World Cyclocross Champion and current MTB French National Champion. She is really slow (not!!). She is the one that tried to work Katie Compton (USA) over with her teammate at the Cyclocross World Championship this year. Katie ended up 2nd, Laurence 3rd and Laurence's teammate-1st. She is hilarious actually and has a tendency to say "dat is sheet" all the time about everything which has us rolling with laughter! She has a great personality and she will be regretting that she asked us to come stay with her in France. Of course, when do we really have time for that?

Friday, June 29, 2007

Day 6 - North Pole

The STK Plant in Quebec:

Our host Emmanual hooked us up with a "hydration specialist" (so funny!..........a FEED) for the race on Sunday. Its a guy whom he works with at the Pulp Plant (STK). So all chamois-ed up we headed to the plant to meet the lucky guy, Oliver, and give him the low down on the whole feed thing for a race. You get a lot of looks when you walk into the Chemical Lab with your jumpsuit on. These were the thickest prescription safety glasses EVER (they were Olivers):

Afterwards Emmanual wanted to show us a water fall area just down the road. Nothing like site seeing all suited up!

I think my rib is getting better too. I will say that I have been able to do a lot more than I thought I would during the day including training on the road but sleeping is tough and not to fun. I seem to be way better which is good and hopefully a sign that I didn't damage things in there as much as I thought I did (still haven't x-rayed it). Seems stupid to tell but I can cough and laugh deeply now and can almost take a deep breathe without pain. Still can't blow my nose though- dang that hurts! And yesterday was the first day without jabbing pain on the road at every single bump.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Day 5 - North Pole

Today we woke up to the muffin man who had made his secret family recipe muffin mix at 12 am and then baked them fresh this morning. They were still warm for us and they were some of the best muffins I have ever had. Emmanual could definitely market those. If he has not made muffins for you yet, ask him to. You won't regret it. He needs to sell those suckers. The muffin mans muffins came in this chicken:

And no, we are not at a bed and breakfast........our host family is treating us like royalty!! We were sooooooo lucky to find these guys and we are so thankful to them for making our trip to a french speaking area so easy, nice and pleasant.

After running into the fresh muffins in the kitchen we then ran into this in the restroom......first notice the cool tire that is on the outside of the mirror and then take note of the writing on the mirror with the circle above it for our head to fit into. These guys are great!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Day 4 - North Pole

It is 12 C and raining here right now. It has been beautiful until today. We ripped up the bike path along the Lac Saint Jean yesterday with our host after he got home from work. We almost ran over some dogs that didn't belong there because it is a cyclists/peds only path - nice! They are really into cycling up here with bike routes all through the back roads. Well.....road. Ha ha!!

This is the house we are staying at in Saint Prime right now. We love it!!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Day 3 - North Pole

Sara and I went to check out the race venue today. After arriving in Saint Felicien and then driving 15 minutes on a dirt road we arrived at the ski area and now MTB World Cup venue, Tobo-Ski. The UCI has a lot of stuff to do and put up still as this is what we drove up to.

Here is what Tobo-Ski looks like in the winter:

Yes, this is all that is up here right now. That one building. Again, the UCI has much set up to do.

On the way back to our hosts home we ran across an artists house. He likes dragons:

Monday, June 25, 2007

Day 2 - North Pole

Which straight and flat road to train on? many decisions! Flat Power intervals anybody?

Carole and Emmanual, our hosts here in Saint Prime are just fantastic. Last night before dinner he asked what kind of beer I liked and I answered with something he didn't have. The next thing I knew was out the door and heading to the store in the car to get me my dark beer. What a guy! After dinner he whipped up some iced Mocha's for dessert. When my clothes don't fit when I get back home, you will know why!

Day 1 - North Pole

We came downstairs to this in the morning. Could get used to this everyday. Chris better watch out! Hee hee.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

On Our Way to the North Pole

We left beautiful Mont Sainte Anne and drove 3.5 hours North through thickly forested trees and dark blue lakes towards the next World Cup race. The drive was beautiful. Being from WA state things were impressive to me more so here because on every lake that we saw there was not one house and the fir trees came all the way down to the lake. It looked so neat!

The World Cup race this weekend is in St. Felicien but right now we are staying in a tiny and very quaint town called St. Prime which is only 4 k away. We are staying here because I lucked out big time with the race promoter of St. Felicien and was able to set up host housing in exchange for cooking American cuisine for our hosts. Our hosts for the week are a wonderful couple who work in the Milling industry and Social Work. Milling is huge up here as you might imagine from my description of the drive.
You just have to love the way they do things up here too. My instructions for arriving at the Desbiens were to go to the church in St. Prime (no address) and call a number (no area code given) and let them know you are there. That is it. There was no contact with them before, no confirmation #'s, no anything except one single email from the race promoter with the instructions above. Funny. It is amazing how much trust you could and do put into people that you don't know and have never met before. And most of the time it works out as this did!!

So we are here in St. Prime reveling at the quietness of the updated farm house we are staying at that is just across the road from the massive Lac Saint Jean. Hence the 10 hour sleep. Boy, can bike races sleep I tell you. Here is a picture of the huge lake that you cannot see the other side of in most directions.

I guess on the frozen lake during the winter they kite board because the winds are soooo crazy fierce. Winters here are brutal it sounds like with a ton of wind but they make up for it with dog sledding too! Not to mention that there is a cheese museum just down the road. This place is great. Can you believe we have wireless at this house too? Amazing!!

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Broken, Fracture, Torn, Ripped, Compressed, Bruised, etc.

Those are some of the possibilities of what I have done to my ribs on the right side today 10 minutes into the race. It does not feel good-can't breath, cough, sneeze, (essentially move) without pain. Haven't seen a doctor and am not planning on it yet.

Before I go into what actually happened I just need to ask the question "Why are there always HUGE crashes at the start of World Cup races?" Is it not possible to not hit someone else on the bike and just keep your stinking line people? What is wrong with these folks? Pro riders at the top level in the World? Hmmmm. Needless to say......MASSIVE PILE UP 10 seconds into the start. I had anticipated it because I have seen it happen over and over at the World Cups. I just waited for it because I could, as I had a back row start. I saw it happen and made a split decision to make a cyclocross move over the tape, ran up 10 feet and then went back over the tape onto the course. Other people did it too and then everyone was in gears that were wrong and trying to peddle and falling over and people were still crossing their bars over your thigh. What the?? Meanwhile half of the field is still on the ground behind us curled up in balls waiting for the confusion to end. I remember seeing one gal laying in fetal position with a pile of sand that was coming up and over her helmet. Ooooh not good. The only reason I saw her was because my wheel almost went up and over her face. Again....not good. That is when I busted out the cyclocross moves.

Feeling good I went burning up the climb hit the technical descent no problem, climbed up another 20 feet and started descending over a huge rock/dirt staircase section. I tried make a pass on that, misjudged how much it dropped off on the other side of the rock I was going over and literally landed on my front tire with my bike vertical to the ground with me on it. I was staring at the ground as I endoed BIG. First thing out of my mouth after masses of racers passed me was "my rib!?!". I didn't know what was going on. I just knew I had sharp pains. I didn't know if they would subside or get worse but I got back on the bike almost immediately after gathering myself and just kept going at what ended up being a notch below full race pace. It was tough. I had a lot going on in my head. I had no idea who was up the course anymore and no idea who was behind. All I knew is that all I could focus on was me and the pain. I didn't know what was going on with my ribs and I had thoughts of sharp pieces sticking into my lungs, lungs filling with fluid, and me keeling over mid race. My mind does wonders at thinking outrageous thoughts if you can't tell. I just didn't know what was wrong or how wrong it was you know? I thought about stopping but I have never just stopped (dnf'ed) a race at my own will and I just couldn't do it today either. Just couldn't. Pain was the game but this time it was the pain of being just below race pace that overtook the rib pain. So actually racing was a great thing because it took my mind off it for 2 hours. Didn't get lapped-don't know how because I was slugging slowly down everything wincing in pain as my tire made contact with the ground as I dropped over stuff. Oh ya, good times.

We shall see how the next few days go on the bike. I sure my ear is not going to fall off or anything and I should live though. Just need to adjust to a slower lifestyle and a new way of living for a while.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Where Did the Day Go?

Why is pre-race day ALWAYS the same? How come you can never just get up, ride, go back to the hotel room and be done? Does that EVER happen? EVER? Maybe in your world but not in mine...that is for sure.

Today I think I burned every single favor that anyone and everyone has ever owed me, thought they owed me or never wanted to owe me. And the low down on the day-

Ride to venue (not far)
Register/Packet pick up
Beg every team and person for a feed tomorrow-find one....first favor burned
Find someone who will work on my tires.......second favor burned
Ride to hotel to get more bike parts
Ride back to venue (seems a little farther)
Get the right tires put on so Kathy won't go over the bars again..third favor burned
Beg someone for a brush to wash my bike with.....fourth favor burned
Wash bike
Return to hotel only to find that my brakes are rubbing probably from the crash yesterday
Talked to a mechanic at the hotel but he was having none of it.......fifth favor ALMOST burned
Ride back to venue again (getting annoyingly far now)
Beg every team, team manager and mechanic to find someone that can work on brakes-find one.......sixth favor burned.

I just have to say thank you to every single individual out there who made my life easier today by getting my bike in working order. From old friends, to old and current sponsors, to old team mechanics from years ago, soigneurs, etc who I know probably wanted to run the other way when they saw me coming but they didn't. It is those kinds of folks that make the world go round in the right way and it does not go unnoticed on my part. Thanks everyone!

Tomorrow = 11am back of the pack start. Sah-weet!!!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Were Heeeeere

After 5 hours of sleep, we got up at 6am (which may I remind you was 4am Utah time.......about 5 hours BEFORE I normally get up...ugh). Kathy need sleepy. With "Sara the leadfoot" driving (bike racers are all the same) we made it to Monte Sainte Anne Quebec in 6.5 hours from Boston. Not bad I must say. In Sara style she made herself right at home and pulled right up to the hotel room door so we could unload. She said she is DONE lugging everything around after being in Europe. Guess she wasn't kidding.

Once unloaded we got out on the course and I had what I found out to be a false sense of security about my tires and went "over the bars and through the woods" on the very first techinical DH. Right when my tire sneaked over that slimy rock I knew I was done in for. I bounced off a few rocks and even laughed as it happened because it was so dum. I am ok mom, don't you worry!

Oh ya and you've got to just love what styles from around the globe these World Cups bring. Did I say STYLE?

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Quebec Prep

How can a human have so much to do? I race bikes for crying out loud but yet THAT my friends is the problem. In preparation for being gone for 2 weeks racing in Quebec at the World Cups Sara and I, first thing, hit the oil change place for her car, then Peets coffee (priorities, priorities), then Costco, then stopped at one of her sponsors, Planet Shoes , then headed to the local farmers market, then the grocery store and then finally back to her house. It was like 2pm by the time we got all of this done, unloaded, separated (remember we went to Costco) and packed for the car trip.
Then I had to help Sara with HER packing.........

She has a few things to choose from...............
What was next? Oh yah, my bike. Need to build it and get that training ride in. I got my bike out of the bike box, built it up and everything was groovy there thank heavens. I always worry about something breaking in transit. I have seen with my own eyes what those luggage handlers can do to large boxes that LOOK sturdy. It makes you cringe.

Next project: Had some lunch and now I am free to ride.......or not. Right then my wheel box stuffed full of all my waterbottles, drink mix, recovery, gels, extra tires, tubes, Stans, wheels etc. arrived on the doorstep by UPS. Just in time for me to break it open and put the disks on the wheels (oh joy!!).
Ok, whew. Now its 5pm, haven't ridden and I am hungry again. Great. But I finally was able to get out on the paved bike path that I just ripped up. Tore it to shreds....people running away from me screaming, parting like the red sea as I hammered towards them and their darn rollerblades. HA. Just kidding.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Airplane Fever

I got up, trained, stretched, packed the rest of my stuff and was on a plane to Denver, CO by 1pm today. Most days I don't even get out the door by then! I am headed to Boston, MA from Denver, CO where I am meeting up with Sara Bresnick-Zocchi who I will be traveling in Quebec with. She lives just outside Davis Square where Tufts University and grand ole Harvard are. Its a pretty sweet set up in that area for sure. She gets to walk everywhere from her house in order to do errands. You should see just how many people WALK by her house every minute all day and night long.

A layover in Denver, CO gave me enough time to squeeze in some emails and more phone calls that I wasn't able to complete in the last few days. All work related which is unbelievable I know............ "What do you do with all that time you have every day, Kathy?". Oh YA RIGHT.

The flight to Boston took FOREVER. At some point I wasn't exactly sure if the pilot was really headed to Boston or freakin' Europe!! Some thunderstorms elongated my journey across the US to a 5 hour flight. Not cool but at least there was no one sitting next to me on the plane.

Monday, June 18, 2007


All I did today was prepare for my departure tomorrow for the Quebec MTB World Cups that are this weekend in Mont Sainte Anne and next weekend in St. Felicien. Been to Mont Sainte Anne 4 times or so but never been to what we are calling “the North Pole” (St. Felicien). Don’t know what to expect there. I do know that I should expect to start probably 120th if I am lucky out of 120 people. I have NO UCI points for a good start position or call up. So when I write and say I came in 80th don’t be shocked. It’s tough to move up during the race in the world cups. The trails are clogged with people fighting for themselves, their countries their sponsors, the Olympic team and even their own futures. It can get wicked out there let me tell you. I just hope to get some great training in which I know I will.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

NMBS #4 - Deer Valley Short Track

Holy lord was the Short Track hard for me today!! I still got 7th but after a peddle bumble at the start I was playing make up from the get go. Darn it!! Sucks when stuff like that happens and you know you have good form. And on this course in particular that peddle issue mattered because this STXC was more like a Time Trial with not a plethora of room for passing. I made some good passes but just wasn’t recovering on the DH at all which sent me so past the point of sheer and utter pain. The pain was so bad at one point that I looked down at my watch and it only said “7 minutes” (into a 25 minute race that wasn’t going to get any easier). Oh boy – this was suffering at its finest. I was on the rivet the entire time. One more surge and I was going to blow. I could feel it. I have blown once in my racing career and I now know the symptoms all too well from my body (nausea, tunnel vision, cold sweats,) so once I get right on the edge of feeling those I know that is all the body can and will do. So I just simply stayed on it hoping someone else may crack, maybe drop a chain, or bobble. But no such luck. 7th was going to be where I finished and I will always happily take a Top 10!!!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

NMBS #4 - Deer Valley Cross Country

Alright alright. I know this is going to sound cliché or something but I have to say that today was a "dream come true." I had my first ever Cross Country podium at a National race and to do it on my home turf at a home town race was pretty darn cool. It was an amazing feeling to come across the line with friends, family, former Deer Valley co-workers, and everyone that knows how hard I have worked for this, etc. cheering for me as I came across the line grabbing the 5th and final spot on the podium in the NMBS Cross Country race. What a great feeling!

I have worked hard for this day for sure. Lots of sacrifice, lots of suffering, lots of commitment, lots of ups and lots of downs. I still can’t believe it. This picture says it all as I crossed the line in 5th. A podium shot here too. And another shot of me just hanging after the race:

Today just felt flat out effortless and easy. That is crazy because I have never had that feeling before. Maybe it was a combo of being well rested and peaking. Don’t know but I will certainly take the outcome.

It was a bit of a strange day that didn’t go precisely as one may have wanted. It started out with me forgetting my heart rate monitor strap which wasn’t a huge deal. Once I discovered this while making the drive from Heber City to Deer Valley for the XC race my only reaction was a very unexcited and un-anxious “oh well”. I guess I am getting to the point that I have raced a lot and things like that just bring on a shrug of the shoulder now because they happen WAY TOO often on race day especially. It’s always something… Chris forgetting his MTB shoes last week for the Intermountain Cup race. We were already low on time and on our way up to the local race and had to turn around and go back home. What are you going to do? Well the answer to that is deal with it and cut your warm up down. Whatever. It’s not the end of the world. That stuff is just becoming part of the scene.

Ok so back to this heart rate monitor strap thing……I forgot it. Bummer. It would have been nice to have it while warming up is all. I DO NOT use it during the race for any purpose other than for time so I know when to take my gels. But once I realized I didn’t have the strap I also realized that I am from these parts and pretty much know every bike racer in the area!! So one lucky friend, Ron Prue, got the call…… “Dude, are you in the area and do you have an HR strap with you?” The answer..... “yes and yes” Ok, my day was already looking up. I only ended up having to do ½ of my hour warm up using “the force” and occasionally sticking my hand on my carotid to make sure that the force was actually with me. No biggie, Ron saved the day and maybe even gave me a good luck charm too I am thinking.

When the race started I was off like a shot thinking that we were going to be dumping single file into the singletrack that wasn’t too far up the dirt road we were climbing. You know the drill…..first ones in = first ones out so I boogied up and was all set to be around 3rd into the singletrack and I then noticed girls #1 and #2 heading straight up the steep dirt road and not turning. At first I thought, oh maybe the singletrack is further up than I thought and I will continue to kill it to get in first. Halfway up the dirt road I realize that we are heading straight up it, no singletrack involved. Oh boy…..I was already pinning it………..guess I should have listened to those pre-race instructions at the line that apparently were given to us over the microphone regarding sending us straight up the road on the first lap—whoops e daisy. Ah heck who I am kidding? I don’t want to listen to someone giving me instructions at the line! :)

I down shifted at that point and kept er steady as we climbed. Over the next 6 minutes of climbing to the top of Little Stick I got passed by about 6 or 7 women but the weird thing was that I didn’t panic AT ALL. I must have known deep down that it was going to be a solid day for me.

By the bottom of the first descent I had passed one gal and gotten stuck on the back of a train of 3 more. I knew there was no passing on the DH for the most part so I took the opportunity to sit on a fuel up because a small climb was in our future. There was some minor shifting of places going on within the group of 4 of us until we hit the paved road headed towards the next climb. That is where I made the move and passed 3 more women, busted a move climbing like a mountain goat through all the switchbacks and let-er-fly on the DH towards Mitt Romney’s house. I know those corners and turns SO well and would have been interested in an odometer reading on that one for sure! My only goal at this point = lose the girls I just passed and give them no hope of catching me. Racers are so mean deep down aren’t they? :)

As I made my way back towards the start/finish area to start lap 2 (of 3) I was fast approaching another gal. I couldn’t believe it- she was holding that last spot on the podium I was pretty sure!!!!! It was just a matter of time before I passed her so I kept on it past the feed zone and back up the Little Stick climb trying to decrease the gap. At the top of the Little Stick climb it pitches up nice and good and that is when I decided to throw in attack-right where suffering was at the finest for all parties involved. And when I did I got no response from her which I was psyched about!! At this point I was happy to have just moved into 5th but not overly so because things aren’t over until they are over. I still had almost 2 laps to go and was going to need to fly in order to keep this podium spot. I told myself to grow the gap, grow the gap, grow the gap. I became like a mad sheepdog with only one mission to grow the gap. During this process I got a bee sting right in between the eyes too!! That little guy got caught right under my Zeal Optics sunglasses on the bridge of my nose and decided to zap me. The sting actually felt good when compared to the pain in my legs and during that brief moment in time I felt relief from the pain in my legs. It was something else to concentrate on until the bee sting pain disinigrated and the leg pain took over again. It was good while it lasted though!

As I made my way “over the river and through the woods” (at that point I was wishing it was “to Grandmas house we go”) I would have to say that around almost every turn there seemed to be someone yelling for me. I swear the bushes were talking because people seemed to be stuffed everywhere. THAT was motivating for sure!!!

As I came in towards the finish line I took the instructions of a friend/spectator and kept it smooth, took it down a notch and took it in for the podium spot. When I came across the line I swear I have never felt such relief and excitement in my life. Everyone was cheering at the line and the announcer was going crazy knowing I am from the area. You would have thought that I won or something!!! But in my mind I did. I always knew I could do this; it was just a matter of having it all come together. And what a better place to do it – home town in front of everybody! Incredible. I will remember this day for the rest of my life!!!! Thanks for letting me share it!

NMBS #4 - Mens Expert Open Super D

I just got this picture of our buddy Jen and Chris right after his Super D race on Friday. Nice swollen nose Chris. Owe.

Last year Chris won this Super D race but this year something grabbed his tire while he was big ringing it down the mountain. After a blow to the sternum by his his bike stem, flipping over the bike landing head first in the bushes and thinking he broke both his nose and a rib he was able to gain his composure enough to get up and go again to come in 14th out of 25 or so men. Since every second counts in a race that is 9 minutes that was an impressive result!! I still don't know how he got up and navigated down the rest of the dh with crooked handlebars too. I guess the Sherwins like suffering or something. Shocker hugh?

Friday, June 15, 2007

NMBS Kickoff Party

The Young Riders NORBA Kickoff Party at Squatters Pub Brewery went really well last night. Lots of people, great food, awesome raffle prizes and tons of autograph signings. Think my hand is going to fall off. There were a hand full of Pros there to sign their life away which was great to see. But I will tell you....have swag and kids will come. Oh man they like free stuff. What a great buzz there was last night! Nice work to everyone involved from the chefs, to the organizers, to those that donated incredible swag!

I have got to say though that for me signing stuff is so surreal. It wasn't that long ago that I sat in my office at Deer Valley Resort plugging away at Human Resources work only to look up and see signed posters, "baseball" cards, postcards, etc of the Luna team, the Trek/VW Team, the Haro team, DH ers, etc. on my office wall. I didn't even know those people on my wall back then and now they are my competitors, acquaintances, my coach!, teammates and even my friends. Wow. Who ever would have thunk? I mean really?? At that stage I had no passion to do what I am doing now (cycling competitively) but I thought it would be cool if you could do it - you know? I never told myself that is what I want and that was what I am going to do though. How things change right?

It must have been seeing all the teams and riders come through Deer Valley Resort ever year that got me to do that first race in June of 2000. I had decided to join in the reindeer games as a Beginner racer which I most definitely was, having NEVER raced before. I would ride after work on the incredible singletrack that Deer Valley has and that was it. But, 0ne race = hooked.

And then fast forward to 2007 and I am signing autographs? Are you kidding me? Someone has to be. And now I have that opportunity to sit on someones wall and stare at them while they are at work plugging away? I only hope to get into their head subconsciously like all those posters and postcards did to me over the years in my office. Here is me last night on my way to getting into that subconscious:

Top 10 Reasons to race or get into cycling:

It's fun.

The people are sooooo cool.

You learn about yourself.

Your aren't old just because you are mid 30' fact you are in your prime.

You are surrounded by athletes and athletic minded people.

You now have something to do every weekend if you want.

You create and meet small goals all the time.

You burn soooo many calories.

You learn to push beyond what you ever thought was possible.

And the best only get faster, stronger, have more power, more endurance, more speed, etc. as you get older (if you train). Now THAT is cool.

See you at the races!

Thursday, June 14, 2007


So I have been thinking about this whole home National race thing and I have decided that it is flat out weird. It's:

Weird having a big race at your back door.
Weird sleeping in your own bed each night.
Weird having the option to do errands and stuff.
Weird to think about going to your own gym.
Weird seeing all your competitors on your home course and home roads.
Weird hanging out at my own house each day.
Weird training on roads I know leading up to a big race.

It is just weird or did I not mention that before?

Usually there is such a build up of things like flying somewhere across the US for a race, renting a car, getting lost while trying to find your condo, building your bike up, stocking up the condo fridge, getting settled and unpacked, finding the course and venue, riding the course and figuring out race day logistics, etc........... but I don't have any of that going on right now which is sweet!

I am here and always was, I know where I am, I know the course and I even know where it is and how to get there. My bikes are built my fridge is stocked, I am really unpacked (so says the bedroom floor). All I really have to do is race. Wow what a concept!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


Thank heavens for great sponsors I tell ya. Zeal Optics sent me a new pair of pimping Airestreams that I just received today to replace the ones that someone STOLE (yep, still bitter about that one).

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Squatter's NORBA Kickoff Party

And don't forget............

Young Riders/Squatter's (Team Big Bear) are throwing a party to kickoff the NORBA weekend at Deer Valley.

The event will take place at Squatter's Roadhouse Grill in Park City.
Thursday, June 14th, 4-7pm.
Cost is $5 at the door.
Food buffet of sandwiches, wings, pizza, etc. will be available, while drinks may be purchased at the 'Cash bar'.
Pro teams from around the country will be there to sign autographs and mingle with their fans.
There will be a drawing for prizes like shirts, camelbacks, jerseys, etc!

This is a community event to draw locals and national racers, etc. together. Expected to attend are all the local mtb teams, riders, young riders and their families. See you there!

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Intermountain Cup #7 - Deer Valley Resort

Our local race began at the crack of 9am for us and I think I was still half asleep since that is usually the time I am just getting up. But today jamming the heart rate up to 180 plus was in order instead of pouring my coffee and easing in to the day slowly. Ugh.

It was cold too but it could have been colder. We lucked out with the weather today after what came our way over the week. Because it was around 40 degrees out when I was "warming up" I think I may have actually warmed down though. It was back to the Cyclocross type of weather, temperature wise but would slowly warm up over the next few hours.

The Pro Women had a good field size which was great to see. We started behind eighty or so Expert/Pro men which meant passing on singletrack whenever you got a chance whether you liked it or not and whether it was at a place you felt like putting in an effort or not. If you wanted to get anywhere you had to pass at inopportune times for your body by putting in higher efforts on what you already thought was a high effort. Oh yeah, the sweet thought of pain comes to mind. But that is racing and it will only help you in the long run....and I guess the short run too: After a very sluggish start, a solid pace and many short efforts later I came out with a win. I also met my silly sub 2 hour time goal by many minutes. A goal that I randomly got it stuck in my mind over the week that I wanted to achieve.

Next up is the Deer Valley National race this coming weekend. Home sweet home! If you want to come join the madness here is the schedule:

Saturday, June 16th
Cross Country Pro Women
Snow Park Lodge start
race time = 2 hours

Sunday, June 17th
Short Track Pro Women
Snow Park Lodge start
race time = 30 minutes

For more info go to Hope to see you there!

Friday, June 8, 2007

Words of Wisdom

Don't ever step on a spider that you are trying to kill (sorry little buddy) with your road shoe. Because of all the holes that lead to the internals of the shoe they can end up IN it.

We will see when this one comes out I guess assuming he is still alive. Aye yie yie.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Rollen' Rollen' Rollen'

Did you think I was kidding? I am not afraid of these in the middle of summer plus I wasn't about to put on more than 2 layers in JUNE for Pete's Sake. It was my way of boycotting the weather.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

June 6th? Really?

Ever since I got back from CO I kept hearing all about this big storm that was coming on Wednesday. Seemed to be the talk of the town. Everyone was preparing for it like it was a massive hurricane. And it was like a massive hurricane last night as we got woken up several times during the night from 50 miles and hour winds blowing our patio set, BBQ, planters and chairs across the deck. Amazing stuff.

This view off our deck right now.......... supposed to look like this.....

Maybe tomorrow!!

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Not Happy

I left my Zeal Optics Airestream sunglasses out for about 2 minutes in a store and "Bam" someone took them. What is wrong with people? Do you know how many times I have given lost items to a store manager that I have found? I don't steal but apparently others feel the need to. Must make them feel like they got something for free.......maybe a free ticket to the opposite of heaven in the end. I have no compassion for those that are not trustworthy and who feel the need to lie, cheat and steal. Hopefully one day soon they can turn themselves around.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Fruita, CO

I understand now what people are talking about when they talk about riding in Fruita, CO. Uh-Maze-Zing. If you haven’t gone make plans to go. You are missing out on some of the greatest singletrack out there with lots and lots of smooth fast hard pack singletrack. Rustlers Loop even has little signs throughout it with bike tips like “Get Off Your Butt”, “Ride Don’t Slide”, “Danger Cliff” (who is that Cliff guy anyway?), “Keep A Loose Grip”. That was cool to see because it is a great thing for those learning to ride.

We saw a total of about 20 different rabbits darting across the trail too. They would then sit still as if we didn’t see them while we rode by. Is that where the term “Dumb Bunny” comes from? Again, wildlife is cool, as long as they are scared of YOU but if a pack of rabbits came at me with their long teeth I think I would have a heart attack.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

MTB Race-Teva Mountain Games

Yesterday went well. At the start of the race there was a threat of rain with some thunder and a lightening bolt or two but it didn't manifest into anything. Earlier in the day we got some rain which left some of the course a bit muddier than when I pre-rode but nothing that my Kenda Small Blocks couldn't handle. My climbing was on par with my sweet feather light Titus Eleven taking me up 4500 vertical feet total in 2 hours. After duking it out bouncing from 2nd - 5th I ended up coming in after Shonny V. and then Katie Compton. I won a $1000 too!! THAT is what I am talking about! I can eat now!!

Right before the race there was a mix up of numbers which left us looking for Ned Overend and him looking for us as I had his numbers and he had mine. What the heck?! Why is this not up to registration to figure out and not me and Ned? Don't know but we took care of it. There always has to be something before every race and that was it this time around.

After the race I saw Floyd Landis and he had a bunch probably what were guards and entourage around him but no one else. So I thought what the heck I am going to go introduce myself. Why not? So I did and he mentioned something about me almost passing him in the race (the Pro Men started 3 min. ahead of Pro Women). It's gotta be tough mentally to go from winning the Tour to participating in your first bike race almost a year later and come in 45th or so. Sitting in the court room too much I guess. He was cool though and really nice. I thanked him for coming out to the races because that just makes it big for all of us.

I think our Ultimate Challenge team is going well too with Nikki Kelly winning her Down River Sprint yesterday. Today the rest of our team does the Trail Run (Adam Chase) and then the Road Climb (Jenny Smith). Should go well since we have a strong team and even if it doesn't (go well) I am just happy to help them out.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Vail News

Floyd has been spotted.

Monique (Pua) Sawicki won the Everest Award last night.

One of the editors that we met from Bike Magazine had 2 bikes on top of her rig and the valets at our hotel mashed them into the top of the garage. Bummer :(

I have been volunteered to compete in the Ultimate Mountain Challenge on a Team with:

Jenny Smith for the Road Climb, Adam Chase for the Trail Run, Nikki Kelly for the Kayak and me for the MTB race.

Should be fun!!