Fun on Bikes

As I was training this morning with my ever-patient and supportive training partners (Marc and Steve), I realized I was having a lot of fun. The air was crisp. The wind was strong. But still, I was having fun. Can’t beat it really.

Good training session last night with the Ride with Rendall crew. We’ve got a new location that offers a lot of skill/drill options. I pick up a couple nuggets of information that really pay off. Last night it was the reminder about weighting the outside foot and how to improve my running. I spent some extra time on the running technique last night. Definitely an area of weakness for me. As usual a good supportive group out last night.

This morning the three of us hit up our “secret” training park (mainly because we forgot our flags) and worked on high speed/loose terrain corners. This was cool. I couldn’t figure out why I was struggling with the corner. Then I learned that it is okay to use the front brake on straight sections… Once I learned this, my cornering improved a lot. Thanks guys for the help. One more nugget to put in the bank. We also spent time talking about the bikes – things to keep an eye on between the two bikes, etc. Steve made a good point about having the brakes set up the same on both bikes. Oh, and I’m running 4ZA brakes not TRPs…

I received an email last week from a long-ago Ottawa resident now residing in Edmonton – Mike, sent this course description for the big race next Saturday:

Here is a pre-race (Nationals) report from Alberta; I’ve raced variations of this year’s Nationals course a few times. If the weather is dry, it will be a fast course since Alberta grass is sparse and the ground will be hard. If the weather is wet, most of the water will drain into the ravine – there might be some mud before the second run up. The first part of the course is on a soccer field, so it will be smooth with no roots (not like Moonies BayJ). A couple of turns before the stair run up, there is a decent on asphalt with a sharp 90 degree turn at the bottom – warning; this can be slippery if wet. The decent just before the second run up is on a dirt/pea gravel path – the corner is a little off camber and is usually ridden slowly (at least by me). There will be some small logs on the second run up to prevent people riding it – it’s not too steep and has same elevation gain as the stair run up. After this, there is a bunch of 180’s. At the far end of the course there is a bit of straight off camber riding – slippery when wet. The last run up is short and steep. The next two 180’s are on a slope – so it’s a small gear grind around the corners with little momentum. After that you’re on pavement headed towards the finish with a few grassy corners before reaching the line.

Thanks Mike – much appreciated. We’ll see you next weekend.

Okay, gotta go. I’ve got another ride to do today. There are new photos up on Paul Weiss’s site – I’ll try to get some up here later this evening…

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