July 2 & 3, 2008
The last two days of the BC Bike Race have seen us tackle some amazing trails. Last year I loved the racecourse because of all the technical singletrack. This year they made some changes - even more amazing singletrack.
Of course, to rip downhill, you have to go uphill, and my climbing legs disappeared a few days ago. After feeling very strong for the first few days when my partner, Jeff Schalk and I worked hard to go from dead last early on in day one to first place in the yellow jersey, day four felt rough for me, and day five and six even worse.
I've survived via the yoyo technique: suffer on the climbs and fall behind a minute or so, then charge the downhills to catch up and hopefully pass a few. The Kona team has been riding well and taking advantage of home turf, and now has a solid lead over our Trek squad in second. Our gap over third is also large, so it looks like only a catastrophe will see any changes at the top on the last day.
Despite feeling under the weather, I'm still enjoying the riding and the comradarie. Sharing war stories at dinner every night with close friends like Poz, Jason Berry, Nat Ross, Chris Beck, and Matt Ryan is something I treasure. New friends are made every day on the race course and in the campsite, and the common bond of pushing through the challenging but fun stages is something we will always share.
It's been a crazy race so far, but it's been so much more than just a race. The daily routine of eat, ride, eat, recovery, sleep is always similar, but always different since we are in a new part of British Columbia every day. The organization is excellent, and continues to get even better.
Add them all up, and you can see why the BC Bike Race is my favorite race of the year.
Trek / VW
Trek / VW Team:
Jeff Schalk (USA), 34, Harrisonburg, Virginia
Chris Eatough (USA), 33, Oella, Maryland
GFK Racing Team:
Jason Berry (USA), 33, Arlington, Virginia
Jon Posner aka "Poz" (USA), 33, Catonsville, Maryland