As the first week of Euro Cross Camp comes to a close, the big races really start to pick up. The junior racers, only able to race twice a week in Belgium, have to decide what races they want to do.
The World Cup tomorrow in Zolder ends this week's racing, and a Super Prestige Series race in Diegem starts into next week's racing on Monday. The rest of the week's options are a GVA in Loenhout on Wednesday, Sylvester Cyclo-cross in Bredene on Thursday, and GP Sven Nys in Baal on New Year's day.
On Wednesday, the camp help a mid-week training race for bragging rights, and more importantly, a day away from chores. The race, along the canal, consisted of a very short lap. Racing for about 30 minutes, the effort would not be too much for the racers. Everyone had fun racing just with each other and all getting a little muddy. Zach McDonald edged out Ryan Trebon, who came as a guest for the race, in the final sprint. Finishing in fifth for the race, I won the junior class and got a day off from chores!
Camp life has been pretty simple on non-race days. Often, a day will consist of a training ride to nearby town Kortrijk for a mid-ride coffee break. The roads, which are very frequently icy, add another element to the daily training rides. Yesterday had a little more excitement with a trip to the Koppenburg, and The Tour of Flanders cycling museum.
Seeing the Koppenburg in person was amazing. Taking a quick walk up, we all realized just how hard and steep the climb is in the middle of the Tour of Flanders stage race. After spending some time here, the group continued on to the final destination, the Tour of Flanders Museum in Gent. The museum featured many exhibits containing tremendous amounts of cycling history, and development from the early stages of racing. Much of the museum was dedicated to previous road World Champions.
There was also a special cyclo-cross exhibit that was very enjoyable. This exhibit talked about the World Champions and displayed artwork and pictures of races along with "artifacts" from the racers.