Saturday, January 31, 2009

Riding and Racing

Well finally back from the Tour Downunder and lots to write but how to write it briefly without being too boring....(translated...am I writing for those that read this, or am I writing as part of a diary. )
I will mention three main things here:-

1. The Tour
2. My Time Trial Victory and
3. The Holiday (the boring part for those that weren't there or are due for a holiday)

1. The Tour

The Tour Downunder - The "spot Lance tour" - I bought a souvenir bidon and got a pic of his front wheel. I got other pics too, but this one included the black sock!







The first thing about the tour is the catchy theme song which is everywhere and our first Tour action was the criterium in town on the Sunday night which was fantastic. Our viewing position wasn't great as we were on the inside of a bend and so just saw fast flashing colour and between us and those around us, the crit became a "spot Lance" competition. The last lap was ridden at an average of 60kph which I cant fathom...it was about 1.7km in 1.46 so I am in awe at that speed in a tight knit bunch with bends.

Other highlights of the tour included watching Cam Meyer just gliding up a hill to collect big KOM points at the Victor Harbour Stage, Being part of the atmosphere at the Angaston stage where there had been over 5000 people (I think) taking part in the community challenge ride and then add on thousands of spectators, a fantastic finish by Allan Davis and greta weather, it was a great day of atmosphere....add to that meeting fellow blogger Groover which was the highlight and must have been fate as we had SMS'd each other and I said we were at the 150m mark, and I received a text back saying "so am I" so we finally met.......The tour also gave me the chance to catch up with friends near Willunga and in Victor Harbor too which is always great on holidays.....I seriously loved the tour, the atmosphere, the music, the riders, the race, I was rapt that Allan Davis won it and even shed a tear as he accepted his trophy.....just sentimental me really.....

Oh and the day after the tour I got a pic with the Euskatel Euskadi riders, who were riding around Glenelg and I am sure that like most men in town that day were checking out the young girls in thier Australia Day bikinis.......




2. My Time Trial Victory

Well maybe this should be item one, but Shane and I both entered a road race and I entered a time trial in the masters series being held concurrently with the Tour. We both pulled out of the road race as being in Adelaide on holidays, following the tour, a quick trip back to melb for me mid tour and everything made going for a training ride to Outer Harbour a more pleasant day. We missed our road race I would have ridden 30km in D grade and Shane would have ridden in B grade and it was gale force winds, apparently some riders pulled out, some went the wrong way when a sign blew down in an unmarshalled corner......but we enjoyed our 80km ride....woo hoo. NOW MY TIME TRIAL - There were 9 girls entered the 40-49 age group and I was 2nd in line. It was 25km of very undulating road and my speedo DIED mid Time Trial so I went on feel and breathing hard....and I WON my age group and I won a bottle of wine and some cash so I was very excited. My average speed was only 35ish kph but it was a hard course....Found the actual website with the results here http://www.sa.cycling.org.au/?Page=20264


3,. The Holiday
We trained every day we were there in Glenelg from 40km to 80km and either flat or added some hills. North the ride to Outer Harbour is mainly flat and a who's who of riders. We did see Lances team training the day before the tour with Police escort and we saw Rabobank and AG2R and FDJ and of course the Euskadel teams. If you went South to Hallett Cove there were some nice climbs too which were "fun". We discovered CIBO a chain of coffee shops and the Zabacino and the Cibocino were favorites, one is egg and marsala flavoured and one is hazlenut and they were yum. We saw a lot of SASI riders and just hundreds of riders every day we were out, we rode mainly on our own, but hooked up with others from time to time. I saw the best "testosterone fever" that I have seen for a while. I was leading Shane back from outer Harbour at around 32kph steady, slight breeze, but just tempo riding....we passed a guy in a red shirt....then he went roaring past us, I held it steady and passed him again, no surging just using the fact that he had died in the a**e, then he swooped past us again and sloed down not far in front, so we stedied past him again, we never saw him after that....and laughed a lot about it later.....it was definitely a testosterone moment.

Our accommodation was fantastic and we had a balcony we could sit and watch the beach activity in the evenings, over a few SA wines. This is the place we stayed and Dave, Shane and Bill on the balcony(do your shirt up please Bill!!!.


Other highlights would be going to Harris Scarfe, my favorite shop and the one in Adelaide is Huge, I should be getting some advertising revenue here for all of the free plugs I have given here, but we had a great time, Shanes Dad was in Glenelg too and he thrashed us at cards a lot, but he is a 79yo with tons of energy and was up every night until about 3 or 4, whilst we slept so we could ride the next morning (as cyclists do)....I think I have brought some form home with me, but that is another blog entry......my goal was to start losing weight and in Adelaide I lost about 0.5kg, which is fantastic after a holiday, but we were out and about a lot of the time.
So if you are planning on going to the TOUR....Do It!!!!, take your bike, take a smile and be prepared to soak up a lot of atmosphere and have a great time meeting loads of other people who love riding bikes too.

3 comments:

Groover said...

It was awesome meeting you guys and I have to email you the photos. I might just post them up to FB or Picasa and you can download the ones you want?

Congrats once again on the TT win. You rock!

AMR and I are planning the trip for next year already. :-)

sarah said...

What an amazing holiday! Very cool pic of Armstrong's wheel and black sock, LOL! And CONGRATS on the TT WIN! Way to go!! It looks so sunny and warm there, so nice to 'escape' for a moment from our New England winter while I read your blog ;)

Buttsy said...

Thanks Groover, maybe we can meet for a ride next year, we have our accommodation booked already and I am considering Bright this year too......and buying a Time Triual bike......too much to do

Thanks sarah for your congratulations, I was pretty excited, at the halfway mark, one other girl was going well and I thought she had it won, but I had held back a little bit and so drove it home.....had Chris Carmichael DVD quotes in my had...driving it home and spending all the "money in the bank"...

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