Tuesday, September 22, 2009


So I got into Switzerland a few days early for the World Champs TT on Sun. The race is on Thurs. so the idea was to get settled and used to the time difference. However, I had a tight connection in Atlanta en route to Milan, Italy which was made even tighter by a 15 min. delay that resulted in me sprinting through the terminals in Atlanta in order to make my flight. Well, I made it - in no small part due to my extensive running background - but my bag and bike did not. We had to go back to the airport the next day (mon.) and retrieve my belongings. Do you suppose that I'll get any of the $300 dollars I paid to Delta to transport my bike??? BTW, if you have a choice - don't fly Delta. $300 each way for traveling w/ a bike internationally is a bit excessive I'd say. I think they deserve a boycott. Anyway, back to positives - the hotel and area that we are staying in Switzerland is AMAZING! It is so beautiful that my vocabulary is not sufficient to describe it. We are on a lake (lago di lugano) that is surrounded by mountains and small swiss townships. Except we are also next to this little area of land that is owned by Italy (Campione). It is quite the area and the hotel we are staying at is pretty cool too. It's not super fancy but the real estate, service and food are all top notch.
Oh and about the race: I've ridden the course 4 times so far. It's pretty straight forward - very few turns that require thought and/or brakes. It's got one little ring climb in it (but we do 3 laps) and a couple of fast corners but otherwise you can get into a pretty good rhythem. Today is the first day I've felt good so I'm starting to get excited. The weather has been picturesque so far but there could always be rain in this area. And I rode the road course as well and I have to say I'm a little relieved I'm not doing it. It's a 15k circuit with punchy climbs and single-file narrow, windy descents through town. Very good for Bizarro-Zirbel. Okay gotta go. Ciao.
the view from the our hotel

also taken from the hotel, that little town is Lugano

this is the view from the other side of the lake. In the lower right somewhere is the hotel we're staying at. And it's not hazy, the crummy cameraman just doesn't know how to reduce glare.

And here is the entrance to Campione, 2 sq miles of Italy surrounded by Switzerland which is also right outside our hotel (we're on the swiss side).

And this is a Swiss slug making its way across cobbles. It's hard being a slug.


Amber and Eric Rydholm said...

Good luck on Thursday!!

Lyne said...

Good luck!

David McMillan said...

Go Tom! Thanks for posting an update before the race this week.
I can't wait to tune in to the live coverage online at some ungodly hour in the AM on Thurs.

Finally a long TT for you! Dinner is on me if you break an hour:0)

Anonymous said...

Tom,I'd wish you good luck but I think you have enough talent to do ypurself proud. You look great in the U.S. kit but I still want to see you in that skin suit. As they say in Green Bay...GO TOM GO.

Ride fast and may the wind be at your back and the rain doesn't start until you've finished.

Don H. (we'll be watching and cheering)

santo said...

I watched your performance,and you are the winner for now, i hope all good for you, i live in Como and work in Lugano, bye bye and take care...

santo said...

Your time 1:00:42:86, i think you can be satisfied aren't you? tell to us! Ciao

Anonymous said...

Zirbel, nice job today at the worlds and you've made us proud!! Keep up the god work and enjoy the off-season!