Saturday, October 31, 2009

Halloween Fun

the boys
awesome costumes

Dilbert being cool with Elvis

Monday, October 26, 2009

Pedalhead Super "Sunny" Prestige Race

Sunday, the sun was out and it was a nice warm afternoon to watch the Expert and Elite Men's races after my race. The course was held at Goldbar park on the cross-country ski trails. It was a "fitness" course with sheer fast distance to cover. There were no demanding corners though lots of climbing and fast descents. Only one set of barriers I swear came up over my knees which was a good section to watch and get a few laughs at my style.

Caught a photo of Robin Baillie thru the very cool sandpit section that was rideable with speed and bodywork.

Labyrinth at the Devon Dairy Queen Double Dipper

The Labyrinth Snail
The Labyrinth cyclocross maze
photo - Mike Dickinson

United Cycle designed a unique course which included going into a Labyrinth for a few complete circles, turning and then exiting with another couple circles. It was dizzying the first time going thru. Each time it was more and more fun to see how much speed I could keep before the complete 180 turn. Check out video footage from Darcy Reynard.

Weather was cool at 5C, windy and spots of drizzling rain - not so bad when we were racing. The course was frozen in the morning and the muddy sections softened up by the time the women's race was on.

With my poor starts at last weekends race due to actually believing the starting commands.... "15 seconds... go" and meanwhile only 5 physical seconds go by... I was adamant to be ready this time.

Now, I was all ears and bursting to go after that first command... "15 seconds"... "10 seconds"... I'm really ready... "5 seconds"... Now, I'm chomping at the bit... "you can go when you're ready"... what the heck does that last statement mean, I was ready 10 seconds ago - whatever, I took off! Within two pedal strokes I could tell no-one else had taken off when I did. We expected a "go" or a "horn". It didn't feel good to have escaped early though I did what the command said... I was darn ready to go!

photo - Mike Dickinson

After the first chicane, I was leading only due to accidently blocking Pepper from passing me on the right. I then veered to the left as we both laughed at the collision. Ha, I laugh whenever I see these barrier shots as I can barely hoist my bike over!

Darcy impressively climbing the slick muddy hill in the Sport Men's race. The hill got even slicker for my race and I chose to run up every time. Good thing as no mud glued onto my tire for the immediate slimey descent.

Darcy descending the screaming slimey descent which was much like creamy peanut butter

with p o w e r the sandpit was rideable...
photo - Mike Dickinson

the gals - Bridget, Loni, Pepper, Marg, Katy

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Fall-time running fun in Edmonton

Just ran the last fall x-c race tonight. This run series is one of the highlights of living in Edmonton. Seven x-c races in different locations each Wednesday night in the fall-time. It draws over 200 people, young and old, fast and slow. I think the first one I ever ran was when I was 16 years old and racing with the Edmonton Columbian Track Club. It's great to see old-time runners come out of the woodwork, and friends from all sorts of places.

Rain, Snow or Shine - the race goes on!

Marg wearing Kahtoolas!
Photos - Allan Santos

Monday, October 19, 2009

Remington Cross for Kids - Calgary

The weather seemed cooler for Sunday. After pre-riding the course, I felt warmer with the higher humidity. The course was confined to a small corner at Canada Olympic Park due to COP already laying snow down. It was strategically designed with an awesome road climb then twisting all over with a few blind corners. It was nice to have a stair climb and a sandpit instead of barriers to hike over. Each loop, I tried to maintain more speed in the swooping corners. Definitely fun climbing sections for a climber! My hands got cold probably due to higher humidity. Glad it was only a 40-minute race!
Deadgoat Craig racing while the snowboarders descend in the background

Contemplative faces at the women's start by the bobsled track

The course started with a pavement climb descending into twisty corners on the grass. I had a slow start on the climb (?!) and was working my way to catch up to Mical and Caeli.

focused - I only went thru the yellow tape once. The tape was abit mesmorizing!

Darcy running thru the long sandpit section
photo - Finn Pedersen

I hate putting my arms up!
photo - Finn Pedersen

Awesome riding my Ridley X-Fire!! Fit was perfect. I could reach the brake levers with added spacers
photo - Finn Pedersen

Blow Street Super Cross - Calgary

The Deadgoats set this fun race up in a small residential park. The course took great advantage of the whole area and had us ripping back and forth on the flats with some nice twisty spots around the trees. I played Superwoman before the race changing my race attire umpteen times. The snow melted during the Sport and Expert races before me and the temperature was increasing. Good group of women starters. Being my first cyclocross race since 2005, all I knew was to look for Mical's wheel (super-pro mtnbiker).

Squeezing into 2nd spot behind Mical just before the first corner
photo - Darcy Reynard (fisheye specialist)

Mical riding thru the evaporating snow
photo - Darcy Reynard
Marg swooping thru the corner before the hurdle-height barriers!
photo - Darcy Reynard
Julie cheering with bells... I believe she cheered "go away marg" when I passed by!
photo - Darcy Reynard, bells - Mical's mom
Smiling muddy faces - Marg & Shantel
photo - Darcy Reynard

Thursday, October 15, 2009

1st x-c ski of the season Oct.15th!!

We had only a few inches of snowflakes fall the last couple days. I quickly took the storage wax off my skate-skis and went to Victoria golf course in the morning. There was just enough snow to glide over the manicured golf course grass. It helped that coach Corey already set his own tracks the night before. Super sweet to be on skis again! A couple hours later, the snow was all melted.

Dust off the Cross Bike

Last weekend, it was fun watching the Canadian National Cyclo-cross championships in my hometown. The sub-freezing snowy conditions made it treacherous for the racers. I was super motivated watching all the women persevere. Enough so, that I traded my "massive" Lemond frame in for a spiffy 41cm Ridley X-Fire. Thanks to Guri at Pedalhead Road Works. Off to race a double header in Calgary this weekend. Last raced cross in 2005. Hope I remember how to dismount/mount correctly!

Ain't she sweet...