Tuesday, February 27, 2007

It's not even March yet????

Okay, so the last month has been a bit of a blur. A lot happening and not a lot of time or energy to sit back and absorb it. I am very happy with the results our team achieved at the ToC and am really proud of the 3 guys who gutted it out to the finish despite the prevalent virus/bacteria that was rampant in our team. I was pretty bummed about not finishing st. 6, but to keep perspective - it is only Feb! There will be plenty of opportunities for me to redeem myself. Riding in the tour was a great experience for me and I've taken a lot from it. Everyone on the team is riding exceptionally well and it should be exciting to see how we use this momentum for the March racing. I'm feeling a little better each day and hope to be full strength by the racing this weekend in Merced. At this point, it doesn't look like I will be going to Spain for the Track World Championships but will be doing Redlands instead - which is kind of a bummer but should prove to be better prep for the Tour of Georgia if we are fortunate enough to be invited. 5 of us have just arrived at a host house in Clovis, CA with a family who will be kind (and patient) enough to house us for a few weeks! I've posted pics of their specimens of endless energy they call Garrett (12) and Noah (8). Could be the future of U.S. cycling right here! They love their bikes and can already geek it up better than me when talking about euro pros, tech talk, or anything bike related really. Sorry about the focussing issues. I also posted one of Ben and Garrett relaxing in the romantic Madonna Inn in San Louis Obisbo after St. 4 where our rooms came stocked with pink robes. It's probably a good thing that pic isn't in focus. Then there are some pre tour pics: one of Ben living the life at the Los Olivos Estate (I think I was in that hot tub every night for 2 weeks straight) and one of a team ride with sponsor Mark Bissell in the hills of central California. Speaking of which, it was pretty amazing to see all of the fans and sponsors supporting us during the tour. That combined with our fantastic support crew of Glen, Mark, Jo, Kasey, Ben, and Richie was no small part of our success. It was a pretty taxing tour for everyone involved but hopefully everyone agrees that is was well worth it. :) Okay, that's all for now, but hopefully I'll be getting on a more regular updating schedule. It's possible, eh? Thanks again for all of the support.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

3, 2, 1, BEEEEEEEP!

Okay - here we go! The Tour starts tomorrow in downtown San Fran and all I can say is let's get this thing going already! I've never had so much prep, planning, and hype before a race. Everyone on the team is just ready to hit that start line. We had a great camp and everyone seems to be hauling right now. So I'm excited to see how we fair against the big boys. And speaking of which - being as this is my first BIG race, I'm allowed a certain amount of gawking and awestruck-ness at the event, eh? So here we go. I'm just going to do this once and be done with it. In the last 2 days, I've had breakfast or dinner in the same room as Basso, Bettini, Rasmussen, Jens, Eki and of course all the U.S. stars. I'd have to say that Bettini has the biggest "aura" as the current Olympic and World Champ. And last night our team was introduced at the big gala by Paul Sherwin and Bob Roll. I'm not going to lie - it's been a little surreal. But now I have put all that junk out of my mind and just race my bike hard. I will say that this race is stacked with talent! If everyone is going well at the moment, it should be quite the epic battle. As far as our team, I've been amazed at the level of equipment, staff, and organization for this event. We're on arguably the best equipment at the tour (no kidding) and we'll have 2 soigneurs, 2 mechanics, along with Mark and Glen. So, that's all I got for now. If you can't make it out to Cali to watch, you can catch the action each night on VS. (formerly OLN) and some of the guys will be keeping daily blogs found at the team website. Thanks for following our progress and all the good luck wishes. I'll try to update when I can...