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Friday, May 31, 2013

My new whips for the season

Another year of racing is already under way, and I've finaly been able to get all the last bits and peices together for my trusty steeds for the year.

This year I'll again be riding for Santa Cruz bicycles on the full carbon V10 for my DH bike!  She's a beauty...especially when she's all dirty.  I can't say enough great things about this baby, and fully equipped with Marzocchi suspension and Schwalbe Tires she rides like a dream!
This year Santa Cruz bicycles also announced some great news for women in cycling....a complete division of quality bicycles specifically dedicated to women and named after the "queen of the mountain" herself...Juliana Furtado!  Juliana Bicycles has some pretty amazing bikes for women to choose from, so needless to say I was pumped to be lucky enough to get my hands on one of these beauties right after the news broke! The line stems from the original "Juliana" model that had previously been in my own arsenal, but the bike I received was the "Furtado".  A 5" travel, climbing, descending, carbon machine!  She's a beauty and has already taken me to so many great places!

Until next time...

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Sometimes it's just not your day

Another weekend of racing has come and gone and my focus at the first Canada Cup held in Mont Tremblant, Quebec was to ride more aggressive and just let loose.

The Tremblant course is longer than the first two this season and is known for it's physically demanding nature,  Riddled with rock gardens and uphill pedal sections, fitness and mental fatigue can definitely factor into one's success.

I had my new Santa Cruz V10 with brand new Schwalbe tires and Marzocchi Suspension under me, thanks to some help from Summit Sport Whistler, and I was feeling amazing in practice.

I definitely had one section that was giving me trouble but I was able to overcome it for race day...or so I thought.  On race day I charged out of the start and rode aggressive and hit all my lines, as I came into the section that had given me some trouble in practice, I tried to just stay aggressive and breath.  Unfortunately though it just wasn't my day and I ended up crashing.

As picked myself up out of the mud, and the seconds ticked away on the clock, I got back on my bike and finished strong on the last part of the course.

I was disappointed, as the crash cost me a spot on the podium, but I was happy to have ridden strong and aggressive.  Another positive I took away from the weekend was that I did not feel fatigued at all during the entire 3-day weekend of practice and racing on such a demanding course and I didn't let the crash affect the last half of my race.

I am trying to really find my edge of knowing when to pull back a bit, and when to just "give'er"...it's a really fine line and it seems there's always something to learn.

Until next time!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Back to the N-Dub

Just a few short days after returning from Cali it was off to Port Angeles for North West Cup #2.  This is touted as the "Underworld Cup" and generally brings a wealth of top notch riders as it piggy backs Sea Otter...this year was no disappointment!  As always "Dry Hill" delivered some rowdy racing conditions.

The North West Cup series is probably one of the most fun in this region, and there's always a lot of us Canadians that make our way across the boarder to join in the action.  The race course is lined with some of the most amazing spectators...one can be sure to find naked bodies and blow up dolls in compromising situations all the way down, and the fans are super rowdy cheering and heckling you the whole way!
on the way to a 4th in seeding
I seeded well, coming in 4th behind Jill Kintner and fellow Canadian rippers, Miranda Miller and Casey Brown and I was sure I could shave some time off on my race run the following day.

On race day I took a huge bail on my last practice run; this had me doubting myself going into my race run which is never good.  I rode tentative and tight, which ultimately led to several mistakes and a slower time than in seeding.  I ended up 6th behind Jill Kintner, Miranda Miller, Casey Brown, Vaea Verbeek and Jamie Rees, and although I still had a ton of fun racing over the weekend I was frustrated with the result given my performance the day before.
hecklers' row
Since returning from Port Angeles, I've made some time to catch up with my coach and go through some mental techniques to help overcome some of the confidence challenges that can present themselves and get in the way of performing well.  I'll get to put this to the test in just a few weeks as I head east to Quebec for the first of three races in the Canadian National Series.