Hello friends. It’s the long weekend (Happy Birthday Victoria!) and I’m writing to you from a warmer than usual apartment room nestled in Ottawa. Yes, it seemed like it was never going to arrive, but the heat is finally here… and from the looks of the forecast, it’s going to stick around 🙂
This is my third time in this beautiful, bike-path friendly city and I, again, forgot how it can feel much more warm than it is. I’m from the coast, what do you expect?! Don’t think I’m complaining though, because only a little while ago was I wearing leg and arm sleeves in hopes of warmer days. I’m thankful they’re here!
Post-arrival in Ottawa had a few of the team driving to Wilmington, Delaware in our oh-so-spiffy Volvo team car (it has cruise control, so I’m happy!) for a crit. Prior to the race, we had an opportunity to ride some picturesque Brandywine countryside. For Emily, it was mind-blowing!
9 corners in a mile with a couple little zips for uphills. Early on, I made it in the break with 4 other major teams represented. We rode the break for the whole race, and I knew that if we were caught, there were two teammates waiting in the group! Unfortunately in the last 2 laps of the race, I got a flat tire and was unable to sprint for the chance of a podium spot. Crits always have really cool atmospheres because they are often in major town/city centres and people are crowded all along the course cheering. It’s a great experience for both racers and spectators!
A week has passed and we were off to The Tour of The Battenkill in Greenwich, NY. A race that has 8 gravel sections, with most of them climbs, that is viewed as one of the more difficult North American races. The race rolled along country roads passing by beautiful landscapes. According to plan, the team worked the race, saving my legs for the last third of the race. I was able to make my move on one of the final gravel climbs (I think it was on Riddle Road) and stayed away to win solo. One saying that I had in my head for much of that time was “Out of sight, out of mind”. I knew that if I couldn’t be seen by the chasers, then they would have less motivation. Whether or not that was the case, it certainly had me mentally sharp and strong to cross the line with both arms in the air.
Even though it wasn’t a big race at Battenkill, it was a victory nonetheless. I’m happy to be seeing these small improvements as the season continues on, and am really getting excited for the next chunk of racing.
We’ve got another crit in New Jersey and then the UCI race, GP Cycliste Gatineau!
Eat, sleep and pedal to your hearts content!