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Sunday, July 21, 2013

Finding my happy place

Some pretty key national races took place over the past couple weeks, starting with Canada Cup #2 held at Sun Peaks Bike Park followed by National Champs in Panorama, BC.

Sun Peaks is one of my favorite race courses because it's just "balls to the wall" the whole time.  Some wicked fast, steep sections up top with some more fast, twisting, winding sections to finish off the race. I had some amazing practice laps and really felt I was on pace to podium here...lap after lap things just got better and better!  My Santa Cruz V10 and Marzocchi suspension were just eating up all the chatter bumps and loving the high speeds!
I had an amazing run right up until the last section of the course, on race day, but somehow managed to clip a rock pedaling through the high speed twists and turns just before coming out into the final stretch to the finish line.  I ended up having a pretty epic crash...cartwheeling a few times off the bike and having to run back up to find my bike amongst the dust filled cloud I created behind me.  I really could not believe my luck!
I somehow still managed to come out with a 6th place finish despite the bad luck, but was really looking for a spot on the podium.  No time to dwell on that though, as it was off to Panorama shortly after for National Champs.

Panorama Bike park has hosted either a National Championship or Canada Cup series race for several years in a row, and this year there were some great course changes the trail builders made to challenge racers even more.
There were some nagging injuries bothering me for the past few weeks but I tried to just work through it and come away with a good result for Nationals in hopes of achieving a spot on the Canadian Team for World Champs.

I rode aggressive and confident but it seemed that it was not in the cards for me.  I had three big errors including a near crash across the finish line!  I still came away with 5th place in the country but felt that perhaps I had to go back to the drawing board and re-evaluate some of my pre-race routines to see how I could improve my consistency.
That is racing though, and you just have to take the good with the bad.  At least it's always easy to find the fun in riding bikes no matter how the racing is going and you can always get back to your "happy place" while in search of some better luck for next time!

Until next time!  

Monday, July 8, 2013

"PHAT Wednesdays" are back!

You know summer has officially begun when the  WhistlerBikePark PHAT Wednesday DH race series begins!  Each year is like a family reunion and with over 300 racers for the season opener, it was one of the biggest reunions yet!  Great to see lots of familiar faces and lots of new ones too...it's especially awesome to see so many more women making it out to test their skills agains the clock!
Let the games begin!
As always the season kicks off with a race down #BLine and then the courses get progressively more challenging as the season goes.  This year I started the season off right with two back-to-back 2nd place finishes and tons of fun had!
The winnings...drinks om me!
Despite the series being a more fun, "beer league" style race series, there are no shortage of amazingly talented and fast racers in Whistler to pit oneself against.  These are great training races and the competitive spirit is certainly not lost...the best part is, following your race run, it's off to the #GLC to have a beverage and some laughs with fellow racers and friends.  Always a highlight to the week and something I think everyone should try!

Until next time!