Vermont Race Weekend

Well, the Vermont race weekend is here. This is this first series of races in the New England Verge Series. The New England Verge Series is one of the best (if not top) cyclo-cross race series in North America. Deep fields in every category. Well organized. A strong mix of courses and venues. Experienced promoters. And extra bonus – getting to travel to New England. I’d have to say that is thanks to the New England Verge Series that I’ve discovered some real gems of towns and cities in New England. Could definitely move to Vermont or Massachusetts. And well, Rhode Island – I’ve been a fan of this little state ever since I wrote a report on Rhode Island for my grade five social studies class.

Hmm, seem to have digressed there. Sorry – must be the caffeine in my tea talking! Yep, so hopping in the car soon to drive down to Williston, VT for a weekend of racing at Catamount. Luckily for us we are able to skip the hotel process this weekend and are bunking down with Skip of Kingsbridge and his extended family. Nice change not having to cram ourselves into a little hotel room. Thanks guys for the hospitality!

So maybe you are wondering what goes into preparing for these weekend escapes to cyclo-cross country? Here is a small glimpse into what we do to get ready:
– clean and pack bikes (four bikes) into car
– clean and pack wheels (six to eight pairs of wheels) into car
– pack race bag (wonder if it will rain, snow, sleet or be so hot we will be melting)
– pack street clothes (decided to forgo extra pair of pants in an effort to save space)
– prepare food (made an uber-chili, cooked up brown rice, made salad, prepared pre-race meals of oatmeal, prepared post-race meal of couscous with egg, whipped up baggies of trail mix, breakfast cereals, and car snack food)
– wash and pack up the bottles
– find someone to look after Mr. Murphy for us
– general last-minute tidying of the house
– gather together miscellaneous stuff like bike tools, folding chairs, iPods, iPhones, GPS

Finally, cram all this stuff into our car and then hit the road. More or less on time. Drive. Arrive. Stretch out the kinks in the legs on the course. Crash in a hotel or host housing. Eat. Get race bags ready and finally hit the sack for the night.

That’s it. Sounds like a lot. But after a few weekends of this, we have things down to a pretty good science. The first weekend is always a shock to the system. Amazing how quickly the brain forgets how much stuff we need to take with us to a ‘cross race weekend. It is all part of the experience.

So with that, I’m signing off. It is still kind of early in the morning and I have a few things to do still. Besides I want to hit the big bookstore to pick up some reading material for my trips next week. As for preparing for a double trip to Italy followed by a week in Edmonton? Uh, not sure yet. I’m leaving on Wednesday. Guess I’ll know on Tuesday what goes into prepping for such a long and mostly solo trip!

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