August 16/99 8:23 am - Juniors in Belgium, Nationals Story, Letter From Nationals Organizer
Posted by Editor on 08/16/99
Juniors in Belgium
When you're a junior the word and the action of crashing is part of every race. Either you cause it, are in it or you've seen it from up close. The Liège - La Gleize race in Belgium this weekend was no exception to the crash rule. In fact, instead of calling the race ''Liège - La Gleize", they should have called it ''If it rains, don't bother thinking you're going to stay upright!!!".
The course was composed of numerous winding climbs and descents in the Ardeneese mountain region (region where Liège - Bastogne - Liège is raced). To add to the difficulties of the topography the rain was a major hazard.
In the neutral start the Canadians already had a casualty with Eric Dubé riding over a Belgian. Right after that incident Charlie Gorman and Eric would go back to the front of the pack where it's usually safer and wait to accompany attacks. Needless to say, that after 15 kms into the race our next casualty happened at the front with Charlie going down and because of the high pace at that point, his chances of reentering the pack were nil.
At this point in the race all of the five guys on the team had crashed at least once. Were there more to come?
15 kms later, just a few kilometres before the first KOM of the day, one could see from the following team car a silhouette resembling that of Eric Dubé again. This time though he was on the side of the road waiting for a lift. It would seem that his stiff neck from a few days ago had got the best of him... One officially out of the race!
In the next KOM at about 60kms came Martin Gilbert's turn to lose contact of the main group. His coming off the plane two days earlier for his first euro race weighed down on him a bit.
With a few kilometres to go before hitting the final circuit of 6 kms (to do twice), a small group of 20 riders was off the back, among them was Mathieu Béliveau who had ridden a good race so far. He would eventually finish with that same group.
In the main peloton of fifty riders (of the 150 starters) was Dominique Rollin, looking pretty confortable with the pace. His group was pursuing a break of 3 riders who had about 1 min on them. As some teams were assuming a chase, Dominique was safely in the group climbing and descending with the best of them.
In the end, the 3 guys would stay away with about a forty second lead and Dominique would finish in the lead group in 32nd position.
In general, the ''Canucks" are adapting fairly well to the races with only slight drawbacks; like crashes!! Every race that they are doing is a different style of race which is perfect for gaining the must needed experience that Canadians need to be on top of their game.
Next weekend is Omloop der Vlaasme Gewesten. It's more in the north western part of Belgium. A pretty flat and windy course with.... you guessed it.... COBBLES!!! Belgium racing just wouldn't be racing without some cobbles somewhere!!!
National team development coach
Mélanie Dorion 3e au championnat canadien
Camp-Fortune-Malgré une crevaison, Mélanie Dorion a réussi à grimper sur le podium du championnat canadien de vélo de montagne, dimanche à Camp-Fortune, en Outaouais. Chrissy Redden a mené la course presque de bout en bout et réalisé un chrono de 2h 25 min 32s pour mériter le titre canadien devant Lesley Tomlinson et Dorion. Les trois médaillées sont toutes membres de l'équipe nationale.
Dorion a entrepris la course en lion, mais a été victime d'une crevaison douze minutes après le départ. Repartie deux minutes plus tard, elle a dépassé plusieurs concurrentes pour finalement terminer à 1 min 43s de la gagnante. " Je volais comme un avion! " a-t-elle indiqué d'entrée de jeu. " Je n'aime pas parler comme Ã§a, mais si je n'avais pas eu cette crevaison...
" Ce qui est dommage là-dedans, c'est que ma troisième position va peut-être me faire perdre des voyages payés par l'équipe nationale l'an prochain. Pour l'instant, je vais me concentrer sur la dernière étape de la Coupe du Monde en Belgique, ainsi que sur le championnat du monde en Suède. "
Avant de se diriger vers l'Europe, Dorion participera à une course de la série Norba, au Vermont, la semaine prochaine. Elle prendra également part au Grand Prix Féminin de cyclisme sur route en Estrie, la semaine suivante.
Des extraits sonores de Mélanie Dorion sont disponibles à L'Agence DIAPO.
Mélanie Dorion est boursière Sac Magique de la Fondation de l'Athlète d'Excellence du Québec. Elle est également commanditée par la Clinique Synergie. Voyez un profil de Mélanie Dorion à la page web http://athlete.infinit.net/dorion.html
LES COMMUNIQUÉS DE L'AGENCE DIAPO SONT DISPONIBLES PAR TÉLÉCOPIEUR ET PAR COURRIER ÉLECTRONIQUE.
site Internet temporaire : www.diapo.qc.ca
Letter From the Mountain Bike Nationals Organizer:
I would like to thank all the riders that competed in the 1999 Tim Hortons National Mountain Bike Championships. I trust all the cyclists were challenged by and at the same time enjoyed the race course at Camp Fortune. We have received excellent feedback from the riders of all the events that the various race courses embodied the true essence of the sport and that it was definitely mountain bike racing returning the sport to not just an endurance race but a true test of one's bike handling ability. Over the weekend upwards of 8000 spectators witnessed the event, and we have been receiving phone calls the day after from people enquiring when the next race is, because it was one of the most exciting sporting events they have witnessed.
All in all, the weekend was a success, new champions were crowned, the companies that sponsored the event were ecstatic with number of spectators and the volunteers were formidable. As the organizer, I have only one apology to make to the riders and the media and that is for the technical difficulties we were having with the timing and the results. I am sorry that getting the results out became such a test of one's endurance, which was best left to riding one's bike. I appreciate everyone's patience and again my apologies for the inconvenience this may have caused anyone.
To all those that competed I thank you for helping make the event a success and congratulations to all the winners in this year's Canadian Mountain Bike Championships.
We have received a number of requests for results of cross country categories other than the Elite Men and Women, and Junior Men. We did receive those results, but all of the results were not in good order, so we spent yesterday evening fixing the championship categories first. Today, we were travelling back from the event, so the other categories will go up tomorrow.
Grande Boucle Feminine, France
today is a rest day for this race.