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January 31/04 5:57 am - Cyclo-Cross Worlds Pre-Race Report #2


Posted by Editoress on 01/31/04
 

Cyclo-Cross Worlds Pre-Race Report #2

Almost live from La Roche Bernard, France (12 minutes at 160km/hr from Pont Chateau)

"Cyclo-Cross; the fastest growing sport in Canada!!

Link to course for the Cyclo-Cross Worlds

More notes from Norm

Pigeon
You always hear great rumours and gossip at events whether you are in Canada or in Belgium. The best one that we have heard is that the mother of the reigning world cyclo cross champion, Bart Wellens, has a freezer full of pigeons. Bart supposedly eats one before every event that he does and that is his BIG speed secret. We will try to get confirmation on that for you all.

TV
I am not sure how many cameras they use to cover a NHL game but I will tell you that the coverage of this race is HUGE. So far, 2 days before the major event, they already have 15 camera positions and 2 semis. The cameras have been set up for days and in position. They even leave them out over night covered up.... so different in Europe.

New Frontrunners Shop Hours
I will try to talk Stefan and our staff into adapting a more European format for our shop hours. They are open in the morning then closed for lunch and then open again around 2:00 (17:00) until 6:00. It is not great when you are trying to get some food, gas or other during these times BUT it would be awesome for us as we could go for a run or ride at lunch and then come back to work; ideal!! In fact shops in France are only allowed to be open a limited number of hours a week and workers are only allowed to work 35 hours a week. How does that sound?

Round Abouts
Why don't we have these in Canada?????????? They only make sense. Less traffic lights. Plus they are wicked for riding.

The Cabana
We will try to get Ewan to fire a picture off of this but each team has there own "Bungalow" as they call them. It is a pretty sweet portable with 5 orange chairs and roll down shudders. Hopefully there will also be power and heat in them tomorrow. They have "Canada" on the door and we have put up our Helly Hansen and eNVy stickers on the windows.

Act of God
According to the UCI rules after the start list is published with the names of the racers every one of them MUST appear on the start line to start the race UNLESS they are stopped by an act of god. Interesting!

Food
Ewan is starting to feel a little better but he has not been eating too much so far. We have made a ruling as a team that Samantha and Wendy are not allowed to eat the same thing from any restaurants. We think that this will lessen the chance that they both contract food poisoning (act of god??) at the same time.

Shopping Spree
We reported earlier that Samantha's Reynolds race wheels (2 sets) are lost by KLM/NW. They have no idea where they have gone. Because this constitutes "special circumstances" they told her to get some wheels and they will (hopefully unless something was lost in the translation) reimburse her afterwards. Unfortunately the shops in France do not come close to the ones in Belgium BUT Ewan and Samantha were able to find an OK shop about 20k from the race site. They cleaned them out of Mavic Wheels, 12-27 cassettes and C-X tires. There was also a few other really nice pieces of clothing that Samantha had to pick up....just to make her feel a little better.

Small notes
Forecast: While the barometric pressure on my Nike watch continues to drop the forecast, I am told, is for good weather. Keep your fingers crossed.

The Pit: Since Canada is not a ranked nation we had to wait until the end of everyone choosing pits spots before we were allowed to pick. BUT I think we have a great spot #3 near the top of the pits. I think we were lucky on this one and IF the girls have to do an exchange it should be a good spot.

GEAR REPORT
Corey and I have been spending the past day trying to get one of the Dura Ace shifters on the Pink Surly fixed by the Shimano Crew. They have so far proved to be un-helpful and quite rude. We had the mechanic from the Netherlands (named "Pim"...Corey thinks that is a funny name) and USA (Clif Bar) team look at it and it is screwed from all the sand of Belgium. We really hope that we can get it fixed tomorrow or Corey's Fuji will be parted out and Sam will be out a spare bike.

In the meantime while waiting for Shimano, Corey and I hung out at the "Bungalow" and dialed in the Surlys. They are now cleaned, decaled, oiled, tight and perfectly geared. Envy (eNVy) sent us a number of chainrings so that we would be sure to have the gears dialed in on the two bikes. We tried a number of combinations and have chosen 38-46 for the Pink Bike and 39-46 (130 spacing so a 38 will not fit). The Tufo tires have been hooking up really well on the Surlys so we will be experimenting with tire pressure tomorrow since it is now sprinkling out and the course conditions will be changing.

Tomorrow morning Corey and I are going to depart early and get Samantha's Kona ready and Corey's bike set up at a back up. We are going to try a few tires out on her new wheels to see what works for her but we are guessing that the Tufo's will win.

That is all for me for tonight except to add that Ewan just "evacuated" in front of the Hotel. Don't order the duck in France!!

 


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