Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Ereprijs 'Albert Van Damme' Cross

Last Saturday I had one last chance to test my legs before Koksijde World Cup this weekend.  The race was held an hour from home in a tiny town called Laarne in East Flanders.  I went there in support of Dan Seaton who is a fellow racer and CX Magazine journalist and in support of my teammate Veerle Ingels who was there to win the East Flanders Provincial Champion's jersey. 

As it was a small race, they ran the women in conjunction with the junior guys.  The start was super fast, especially considering the course weaves in and out of a farm that just harvested their corn, leaving little 10 centimeter stalks protruding from the ground.  Veerle and I got away from the rest of the gals from the start and rode at our own pace till the end.  Veerle finishing a bit ahead of me to win the jersey! 

What i took away from the race was confirmation that my body is continuing to get stronger over the season.  On a power course like that, it is easy to judge your fitness. I was also thrilled to hear again so many cheers for me - even at a local race! What a difference that kind of support can make.

But the highlight of the day was the excitement on Veerle's face when she won the race.  When you compete in a country like Belgium where most of the big guns come to race, victories are hard to come by - unless you are marianne vos, daphny van den Brand or of course Katie Compton.  So when it happens, you're sure to treasure the moment.  I may not have won the race myself, but i was filled with joy nonetheless just by getting to witness Veerle's moment.

As for this week's training, it's been raining nonstop with heavy winds attached. It's so bad out there that I almost got blown off the soccer field during my run. It took ten seconds to clear the field in one direction and three minutes in the other.


Friday we leave for the Belgian coast for Koksijde world cup. Saturday is the race. Jonas and I have a little post-race routine every time we go to this race that includes taking a long walk on the beach while holding hands just like in the romance movies. Jonas' mom reminds me that it's just a phase - haha.

As always, thanks for reading!

Photo on top is from Vlaamse Cyclocross Cup
All the rest courtesy of Cindy Nagels

2 comments:

Jonah said...

Peanut! I went to a cyclocross race yesterday here in SoCal (SoCalCross.com). It was super fun watching them all ride around. Not quite the mud-bath as most other courses in the world right now, but at least there was lots of sun in its place. I kept wanting to yell Peanut! as the riders went by but figured they’d think me crazy… maybe someday I’ll get my chance. Hope the World Cup went well.

PEANUT said...

hey jonah
I started racing cross in california which you now see is not a big deal in the winter. I wish it were like that here in belgium too but no such luck! haha. but the mud does help race photos look cooler - haha! Glad you had a lot of fun watching! Thanks for the virtual cheers! Hope one of these races i do get the chance to hear your "peanut"s. very kind of you. my world cup was not good, but i wasnt surprised. just as my fitness is coming up i got the largest saddle sore in the world. my doctor wanted to hospitalize me for 3 days but instead i raced. Denial is a powerful thing...I write while sitting sideways on the couch to keep the pressure off my ass! take care.