Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Well the weather has finally come around and it is great to see so many team mates out on the roads. Make sure to be taking advantage of all the great opportunities the club is offering.
1.) Ever since I moved from Victoria, I have harboured a dream to start up a ride that provides excellent training for experienced cyclists and excellent learning opportunities for novices. Having the two groups start rides together provides the breeding ground for the advancement of cycling in Alberta in general. I have modelled this ride after 'The Wheelers Ride' in Victoria as it's success was extremely obvious with the quality of rider in that city. I haven't called it by any club name or business name on purpose as I want ANY club's riders, of any level to show up, as long as everyone knows the ground rules. I have set up a website for the ride and would love it if the ride started THIS Sat. at 9am. PLEASE FORWARD THIS POST to non-club members who ride. Here is the link to the ride: The Calgary Wheeler's Ride.
See you this Sat. !!
2.) Kyle Marcotte hosts the TdF Pool every year and it makes the Tour even more fun. The proceeds go to a good cause of the winner's choosing. Join up, and help him raise some money and provide an added level of 'Tour Enjoyment'. Here is the link to the rules and the spreadsheet. Download it, fill it in (it only takes a few minutes) and send it to Kyle at firstname.lastname@example.org. FORWARD THIS POST to your friends since they probably want to get in on this. Link is here.
3.) The club has started working on it's sponsorship package for the JayLap Memorial Cycling Weekend. If your company would like to help out in ANY capacity, please get ready to give this sponsorship package to your boss. The easiest way for a company to help is to provide fun Primes in the crit and road race. A good example is Marcy's Chiropractic office donating free 1hour massages for Primes in the crit... perfect !!
4.) SAVE THE DATE. Right now, make sure that Aug. 6th and 7th are blotted off on your calendar to volunteer at our flagship event. You only need to volunteer for one of the events and you can race the other two. The crit and road race are the most volunteer heavy.
Don't forget TnT every week, and I am hoping to post a club event for this Sun morning to coincide with the TTT in the Tour !!
See you on the road,
Trev and the Club.
As Darcy mentioned in his earlier blog I was unfortunately involved in a very unexpected, unnecessary and rather nasty high speed crash on Sunday at the Devon RR. It involved three riders, including myself. While I know who the other riders were from talking to others after the race, looking at the finishing results and remembering faces and team kit colors, I will refrain from using their names in my description of what happened. Let’s just call them rider A and B, and me. In the heat of the moment – everything happened so fast - no one really thought to look for numbers or ask for each others names.
Leading up to the RR, the Devon GP weekend was going great for me. I had finished 6th in the ITT and 4th in the crit on Saturday and achieved my primary goal for the weekend which was getting the necessary upgrade points to move into cat 4. Then came the road race on Sunday. It was a relatively straightforward out-and-back course with no crazy descents, hairpins or other technical aspects. It should have been an uneventful road race. The race got off to a brisk start with a few guys off the front early. Within about 10km we had brought them back into the fold and the race was then well under control. There were a few erratic riders as always in the bunch but we were pretty much all together to the turnaround; maybe a half dozen or so guys fell off on the climb up to the turnaround and a few more fell back on the return climb. I was front- to mid-pack most of the way, trying to protect my fifth place on GC but also prepared to work for Darcy if he was in the lead group as we neared the end of the race. On the climb back out of the Genessee River Valley two guys from Pedalhead got away. Before the right hand turn back onto Township Road 512 we’d caught one of them. The other guy was still away by about 100 meters. Leading up to and after we’d turned right onto Twp Rd 512 a few of us were working hard at the front to try and bring the breakaway rider back into the fold (including rider ‘A’ who was to the one to cause the crash). We were being blocked reasonably effectively by the breakaway guy’s teammates. About 8km down Twp Rd 512 on the way back, and still in a 15+ man group (I cannot recall exact numbers as I was fifth or sixth wheel at the time), and with one guy still off the front (we could see him very clearly up the road) we came to a marshaled cross road at which rider ‘A’, in front of me made an inexplicable sudden and sharp turn to the right as if he thought that was where we were supposed to turn (why he thought this I still cannot understand). It was much more than simply not holding a line; it was a clear right turn at 45+ km/h followed by a sharp braking when he must have realized he’d made an incorrect turn. I, as well as several others who witnessed it all from a little further back in the peloton, and who I spoke to at the medic van, could not understand why he’d have thought to turn there: (i) he was not even front wheel and those that were leading our group to his left were clearly going straight, (ii) there was a breakaway guy clearly visible up the road and (iii) if he’d paid any attention to the race route, which each and every one of us are required to do before a race, he’d have known that we only turned right at the T-intersection at the end of the Twp Rd 512 (it's an out and back - that means we get to the finish line the same way we came!). I was just off his wheel and a little to the right, and rider ‘B’ must have been in a similar position just behind me. In the nanoseconds I had to react I tried my best to avoid him but given how sharply he turned to the right, our speed at the time and his decision to brake upon realizing his error, it was to prove impossible. We were down before we even knew it. I cannot recall whether rider ‘B’ hit me from behind as I was trying to avoid rider ‘A’ or whether rider ‘B’ collided into me after I’d already collided with the back end of rider ‘A’s bike - it all happened so fast. As the rest of the peloton rode away, the marshal came over to see if we were all okay. Rider ‘A’ got up pretty quick and just stood there in obvious disbelief at what he had just done. Funny, he didn’t even come over to see if we were okay. I was very slow to get up, in a lot of pain mainly in my left shoulder and still completely in shock at what had just happened...so unexpectedly on what should have been a routine part of the race course. Rider ‘B’ was sitting on the ground a little longer and I recall him saying he was okay but in too much pain to ride on. After making sure everyone was okay and straightening out a few components on my bike and making sure the vital parts were working and still intact, I hopped on my bike and slowly rode to the finish. I recall Rider ‘A’ also indicating to the marshal that he’d be okay to ride on and from the results it looks like he came in about five minutes after me.
After crossing the line in extreme pain I was driven to the medic van in the parking lot, looked at and then Darcy drove me to the Devon hospital for x-rays and further medical treatment. The hospital staff were great and very expedient. Unfortunately, I did not get a chance to see either rider ‘A’ or ‘B’ again that afternoon to get their perspectives on what happened. I sincerely hope that both of them are doing okay. I am still trying to figure out what rider ‘A’ was thinking and why he did what he did. I may not know the answer without speaking to him. So what can we all learn from this? Firstly, always ensure good and effective communication among riders whether racing or out for a recreational ride, and secondly, make sure to know the course/route before you race/ride on it (drive it beforehand or study the technical guide). This should not have happened and could easily have been avoided if everyone knew the course.
As for me, thankfully and very luckily it does not appear that I have any broken bones. I have what appears to be a very badly sprained SC joint and pretty nasty road rash and bruising on my left shoulder, back, both elbows, hip and left hand as well as lots of other minor scrapes, bruises and burns over my body. I trashed my helmet but other than some bruising behind my left ear, my head seems to be okay.
I hope to back on the bike very soon. In the meantime, and always, ride safely!
By the second half of the race we were down to a group of five riders including Ferenc, myself and the #1 and #2 GC riders. Ferenc put in a ton of work protecting me from the attacks and allowing me to save my legs as much as possible for the finish. In the end Ferenc unleashed an awesome sprint to finish 3rd (and move up to 4th on GC) and I managed to finish strong enough (4th) to move up to 2nd on the final GC thanks to the hard work by my team-mates. A very solid, very fun day of racing for the Cat 4 STers. Thanks Ferenc and Dave!
ps - the pic is from the crit where we worked together and managed to finish with 3 in the top 7 as well - not bad!
Sunday, June 26, 2011
Six ST riders, Darcy G and Matt J (Cat 5), Ferenc J, Dave H, and Chris H (Cat 4), and Thomas Y (Cat 1/2/3) headed to Devon for the Morgan Construction Devon Grand Prix of Cycling. Below is a brief recap.
First of all, I discovered it's possible to stuff three bikes, five sets of wheels, and gear into the back of a Ford Focus hatchback, so Ferenc was able to ride up to Devon without having to hold a disc wheel the whole way. Proceedings got started Friday night with a short, twisty 2 km prologue in the rain. No one was really interested in crashing in a 2 km prologue, so we all turned the gas down a notch and finished safely.
Saturday morning was the 16 km TT, which was a flat, fast T-shaped course. Nothing really dramatic to report: we all simply put our head down and pedaled as hard as we could for 16 km. Saturday night was the crit on a what I thought was a fairly narrow four-corner course. Standout performances include Matt's 4th in Cat 5, and Dave, Ferenc and Chris going 4,5 and 7th in Cat 4. Thomas hung on to finish with the group in the 1/2/3 crit, and had a good suffer face going the whole time. My crit? Let's just say I had a bad weekend.
Sunday's road race meant disaster for the cat 5s. With 20 kms to go Matt was in great position sitting 5th wheel when a rider made a sudden move to the right, taking down at least three riders. Matt rode to the finish in obvious pain. The medics cleaned him up pretty good, but a trip to Devon was required for x-rays. I'll let Matt tell the rest of the story. It's so good to know that Jenn and Matt like to share everything, including road rash and broken helmets.
The Cat 4 and Cat 1/2/3 road races resulted in good results for ST racers, but I'll let them tell their stories.
[Update: Results are here. Thomas was second on GC in cat 3, and both Chris and Ferenc were in the top five in cat 4 (Dave did yeoman's work in the early break in the RR).]
Friday, June 24, 2011
Our Tour de France pool is up and running again. Info can be found here: http://www.calgarytriandbike.blogspot.com/
Entry forms can be found here:
All of the entry fees collected will be going to a local chairty, winner's choice. In the past we used the entry fees to support the Jason Lapierre Scholarship at the UofC, but since we have reached our endowment quota, we've changed where the money goes. Last year the winner donated the money ($860) to the Neonatal Unit at the RockyView hospital.
Thursday, June 23, 2011
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Monday, June 20, 2011
Ferenc is right. It’s kind of a pain in the ass to haul yourself out to
The prologue and post-prologue were good fun, but the ITT, Crit and RR were over the top. Following a string of me finishing just ahead of Slayer in TTs I managed to smoke him by a whole 1.6 seconds over the Minnewanka loop, diskless (me 4th, him 5th, so ... money!). Having proved my mettle in TTs I went into the crit expecting to play a sizable factor. I got gapped two or three laps in and then rode another time trial, this time trying to salvage some dignity by not getting lapped. I started my 24th lap 10 metres ahead of the winner’s finish. Gapped, not lapped though, hah!
The road race started at 7:00, so we were up at o-dark-thirty eating bagels and trying to decide whether to ride with a jersey or a parka. An umbrella would have been nice. Rain was spitting at the start and would vary between that and bucketing down on the back side of the course. The descent off
There was no GC for Cats 3, 4 and 5, but if there were it would have been Chris, me and Dave as 2, 3 and 4 for the weekend, so good racing all ‘round.
Sunday, June 19, 2011
Well, the 4th annual Banff Bike Fest concluded yesterday with the road race. It was the 5th race in 4 days for the Invited Men (Cat1/2), and was 138km. An abbreviated road race (78km) earlier in the day was also for the Cat3/4 with quite a few STC members racing.
Banff Bikefest 2011 Cat 5 Race ReportWe had a good turnout this year at Banff. The Cat 5 team consisted of 12 riders, Ian Watts, Matt Joss, Darcy, Brad Wolff, Peter Regier, Rob Woolley, Reinier, Stephen Pickett, Mike Healy, Mark Shand, Andres and myself. The prologue was a pain, you had to take at least half day off work and drive 250+ km for a 1.5 km race Thursday afternoon. I guess only those hoping to finish in the top-8 bothered to register since we had no GC either. Neither had we a road race. On the rainy, 11 C prologue Ian finished 4th and took home 10 upgrade points but the rest of us went home empty handed. Honourable mention goes to Matt for finishing 9th just missing out on the points. An interesting tidbit that the best Cat 5 rode the same time as Trev, i.e. could have earned a position in the first half of the invited field.
On Saturday we were in for an early rise as the 21-km time trial started at 8:00 for Cat 5's. The course is anything but easy except the first and last 3 km’s that are fairly flat. For the rest of the course you either use a single speed bike or you keep shifting like crazy every 300 m while the grade keeps changing almost arbitrarily ranging from 15% hillclimb to 9% downhill on the Minnewanka loop. It was a bit chilly 8 C at the start but at least it wasn’t raining. I started just 30 seconds after a guy who turned out to be the winner of the TT, so the last time I saw him was the start line. Too bad. Fortunately, Ian saved the day again finishing 2nd (worth 15 upgrade points), while I and Matt still managed to pick up some points (8 and 6, respectively, for the 5th and 6th place). With this performance, TT remains a strength of the club.After the impressive TT from Ian we laid out a basic plan for the crit. I’m going to try to lead up the sprint for him, if we all remain upfront that long. It started to rain lightly by the start time of 5 p.m. The course included a U-turn and four 90 degree turns in 1 km, and it was all wet. Unfortunately, Ian was just too fast this day and slipped out in his fifth turn. As he later told, he slammed into the fence head first and other riders and bikes showered at him within a fraction of a second. The race was over for him, and even worse, he was limping after the race, and also his bike frame got damaged. We wish him (and his bike) a speedy recovery.
I was actually riding behind the crash and a gap opened between the lead group and us. It took its toll on the field but I managed to bridge the gap in a few jumps over the next few laps. We had a varying number of riders (about 3 to 9) up front, including 6 Rundle Mtn CC riders and only 3 others. I had no support at this point and we had to deal with 6 yellow guys. By the time the last lap bell sounded all that remained was 4 RMCC riders and myself. I managed to hang on and even to pull off an acceptable sprint to finish second by about 20 cm. I was happy with it. Many thanks for Speed Theory team mates at our tent and Trev on the next corner for cheering for me, it did help! The other top finishers from the club were Matt and Reinier who placed 11th and 13th , respectively.
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
As we discussed last week after the training ride, the Banff Hill Climb race will prevent many of us from taking part in the weekly TnT ride.
I would encourage the riders that have been coming out to still come out and practice the essential safe riding skills that we have been working on.
Keith mentioned that he could act as "El Presidente" and guide everyone around our route.
Monday, June 13, 2011
Friday, June 10, 2011
Wednesday, June 8, 2011
Monday, June 6, 2011
Sunday, June 5, 2011
Sunday afternoon was the 3.5 km hill climb north of town. Now, the hill was nothing like Apex, but it was steep enough to put some sting in the legs. Not one to mail in a hill climb, I took the win with a 39 second gap.
So, it was a good weekend. Four races, four wins. I'd highly recommend this race for next year. Good courses, good organization, and good prize money. And, it's closer than Saskatoon!
Saturday, June 4, 2011
Saturday afternoon was the road race on an out-and-back course, with headwind going out and tailwind coming back. The terrain and road conditions were a lot like Velocity, but more rolling. At km 14 (ish) I rode away from the group (ok, three other guys) on the only significant climb, channeled my inner Jens Voight and turned the power up, and managed to get to the turn with about a minute lead. I kept the power on the whole way back, and crossed the line in 1st with a significant gap. So, a it's a great start to the weekend.
Tomorrow morning is the crit, followed by a hill climb in the afternoon.
Thursday, June 2, 2011
On Saturday, Jennifer and I (and Keith Ingstrup, for his 50th birthday...hope you weren't trying to keep that quiet Keith) took part in the inaugural Ryder Hesjedal Tour de Victoria. Over 1,200 cyclists of all levels and abilities took part in this event, riding the 50km route, the 90km route lead by Olympian Simon Whitfield or the 140km route, lead by Tour de France 7th place finisher Ryder Hesjedal and "Captain Canuck" Trevor Linden. We, of course, did the 140km route.
It was a “supported" mass participation cycling event, catering to all ages and fitness levels. However after the 10km neutralized start, the pace quickly ramped up and before we knew what had happened the group had thinned out, heart rates had climbed and the legs were starting to burn. A few teams seemed determined to show their stuff, or as it turned out lack thereof, as many of them were quickly put in their place when the Highland hills came at us fast and furious.
The day started out partly cloudy and cool and it remained that way until about 50km into the ride, just after the forested Highland area, when the skies opened up and it started to pour. I was in the front group with about 40 others, including a few folks who I recognized from Calgary (Dave Jetz, Cal Zaryski and Clay Paradis to name a few) and one women, Erinne Willock, who I discovered afterward was a pro (no wonder she was so fast). Jennifer and Keith were not far behind, chasing from one of the next packs. The front group was rolling along at a good clip. Despite the hard tempo, I was now very wet and starting to get cold so I made the dumb decision, in hindsight, to pull to the side to put on my rain jacket (I was shaking and too cold to try doing it on the fly), thinking I could stop, put on my jacket and hammer back to the group. Big, BIG mistake! It took me the next 25 minutes or so of solo racing - all out - to eventually close what had become a 30 second gap to the front group. I eventually caught up to them as the peloton converged onto the narrow gravel Lochside trail. I was spent but relieved that I had finally made the juncture. The front group had now dwindled in size to about 30 riders. I settled into a nice draft along the gravel pathway for the next couple of minutes. However, when we got back on the road, we quickly realized that the guys on the front had used the pathway as a tactical point in the race to further thin out the group...they had launched. I now know why teams are so keen to get toe front before the narrow pave sections in Paris-Roubaix. We were now split into three smaller packs - 15, 10 and 5 or thereabouts. We worked together for a short while but slowly guys fell off the pace. Before I knew it there were three of us trying to chase down Ryder Hesjedal and his lead group. Then it was down to two and then one (me). Dave Jetz, who had stopped for a pee, then came around me, encouraging me to hang with him as he dropped it into turbo. He was gone; out of sight in a matter of a few minutes. I found myself alone again for the last 15 km but I kept pushing all the way to the finish line, passing several guys who had imploded out the back of the Ryder led peloton. It was a great day of organized riding, and on an amazing route.
It wasn't long before Jennifer came across the line, followed a short while later by Keith who was met by his family with birthday balloons and all. We got to talk to Ryder for a brief while after the race. He seems like a super nice guy. And holy crap can he climb hills. To put it in perspective, he climbed a 3.6km timed tough climb a full one minute and fourteen seconds faster than the next best guy (28.7km/h versus 24.6km/h) and over two minutes quicker than me. I think I need to lose some weight!
Ryder, thanks again for organizing a fantastic ride, and good luck at your upcoming races. We'll be cheering you on.
Wednesday, June 1, 2011
Alberta 55+ Games Qualifier
Name Category Time
Mike Zelensky 55+ 13:19
Phil Greenaway 55+ 14:48
Jack Whitlie 55+ 18:47
Paul Burns 55+ 16:09
Willie Van Sevenant 55+ 14:06
Ron Schuhart 55+ 13:39
Rick Courtney 55+ 11:38
If you do have an accident with a vehicle (even with an unknown driver), remember to take pictures of your body and bike as soon as you can, keep all broken equipment like your helmet, write everything down... and don't delete your powertap file that shows your speed dropping from 49 km/h to 0 km/h in 0.85 seconds.
Some of you might not have been team members in 2009, we had an excellent race for the Stampede Road race. It was pretty much carnage and pain, but a great time.
I commuted to the race with Dallas Morris who had recently won the endurance race from California to some really hot desert place. Listening to him talk about the race was an awesome experience and it gave me a true sense of Dallas' quality. High quality.
On the warm up for the race, Mike Healy suggested that we do one lap as a warm up for the race. The stampede is very similar to a crit course. Lots of pot holes, a few rises. Except the fact that it is about 25 times longer then a crit course. We did 1 lap warmup which was 25 km or so, got to the start line, and all proceeded to blow up on the course one by one. This blowing up process was bad on all of us as it was stinking hot, dry and windy. The "falling apart" was especially bad for me as I had commuted to the race with Dallas, who had just won a 160000km or something race by single handedly time trialing the course, with dirty pictures he got when he stopped in Vegas, taped to his bike. There was no way that I could DNF because I was tired or didn't feel like riding anymore with Dallas in my car. It was Stars ambulance or bust for me.
All that being said, I was sent a video link to a study that has been done at U of C about warm ups. This video puts into light that the suggested warm up of Mike Healy might have been excessive and not necessary.
I welcome the comments regarding this video and the argument that it presents. It was on CBC and there is a small ad on the beginning, sorry about the ad.
Maybe some of the senior riders like Trev and Jared can give their thoughts about the argument and provide some input. I know for me, having a good warmup has been followed by very good results in time trials. Having a rushed warm up or no warm up, has been an awful experience with heart burn, cramping, barfing, fainting, crying, crying and more barfing.
How long of a warm up is the ideal for "Masters" level racers?