I feel like today is the first opportunity i've had to just sit down and relax for a bit. Right after the last superprestige event in Netherlands end of November, I headed to California for a week of overload training and to make preparations for the second half of cyclo-cross season.
Then it was on to Rhode Island to attend a couple of UCI International events to help get me back into race mode. And that's exactly what they did - shocked my system.
I was very motivated for Saturday's race (W.E. Stedman Grand Prix in South Kingstown) but my bikes were still recovering from all the flying. One wouldn't shift in the rear while the other had a skipping chain. Within a couple of minutes I was relegated from 2nd to 6th position. Most of the race i traded spots with 5th place. Every time I'd go into the pit to try my luck with the other bike, she'd gap me. I finally passed her with two to go and held on for 5th.
Sunday's race (Caster's Grand Prix) was almost a repeat of the previous race. But this time around my bikes were ready to go while my body was MIA. I knew it was going to be a tough fourty minutes when i was fighting the urge to take a cat nap on the handlebars at the start. I have a feeling i'm still on Belgian time! Again, i came in 5th - a little over a minute back again from Canadian superstar Lyne bessette. AND again, 3rd and 4th place (including vegetarian Mo bruno) were about 20 seconds in front of me, serving as a teaser throughout the race.
On a side note, Lyne Bessette and Tim Johnson parked next to us for sunday's race so I was able to meet their new addition to the family, a 9-month old chocolate lab named Vitesse. Great name! I'm normally not a dog person, but she was adorable and wasn't noisome like most dogs!
I'm staying with a fabulous host housing in Riverside, Rhode Island. Geoff Williams (a fellow cross racer), Erin his wife and kids Kailey (6) and lindsay (2) have been a great support to me. They have done everything from retrieving me at the airport, cooking me vegan meals and even giving me full support at the races! I even have my own bedroom!
I'm now off to gluing tubulars in preparation for US National Championships this weekend. We live about 20 minutes from the race - yipee! I will try and pre-ride some time this week. I expect it won't be a mudfest as it was last year.
Thanks for reading.