Back at it

Rory Sutherland (Ouch pb Maxxis) all smiles before the start

Rory Sutherland (Ouch pb Maxxis) all smiles before the start

The season is flying by as usual. However, we say this every year, so we should not be shocked by it. As sure as the season started, it will end in the next few months and we will be done with 2009. I'm sure in a blink of an eye I'll be out in the cooler weather, heaving my body up a hill. I will wonder how I managed to become unfit in just a few weeks off the bike.

The last two months have been a bit of a whirlwind. It seems like I've been in an unimaginable amount of planes, hotels, and cities. I managed to hit eleven different states in just eighteen days! Ummm, that's a lot. This is my job, and funnily enough it's one of the fun parts. Not too many people can say they fly around the country/world to all these different and amazing places on someone else's credit card! (A quick apology to the person paying for my travel.... sorry to bring this up, as I'm sure you would rather sometimes forget).

Things always change a bit as we move to the East Coast races. We move to ‘chewable' air, hot/humid weather, afternoon thunderstorms, and big cities. I like racing on the East Coast, but I'm happy I live on the other side of the country. I love visiting, but the West Coast is just more suited to me.

Philly is the most popular one-day race in the USA. The Philly experience includes the famous Manayunk wall. This climb is difficult… there are laps when it feels like the climb is not long enough to make a difference in the outcome of the race. However, this is quickly followed by those laps when the climb feels entirely too long! Anyway, it's still damn hard to climb that thing ten times.

Manayunk is also a complete scene. There are people everywhere…drunk people, families, Uni students, house parties, and lawn parties. Some girl was actually reaching out to touch people as they went by! These spectators might not have any idea what cycling is about, but they are out there having a good time. They seem to enjoy the spectacle and we need spectators to keep racing like this alive in this sponsor-less and money tight year.

Tactics and results have been a key component of all of the races this year. Sometimes there is no explanation to what happens during a race. You can have a foolproof tactical plan, but it may not work out the way you planned.

I know our supporters and sponsors want to see us win all the time, but as athletes it's not always possible. It isn't from lack of trying! I would love for our team to win every weekend! Most of the time it's just some little piece of the puzzle that does not quite work out. This is true for all of the teams that are out there fighting day in and day out. We all have team goals and priorities.

It can be very frustrating when things don't work out the way you planned. This is when you stay passionate and keep going. Continue to work hard and believe in that end result …it will come!

I'm on the gain in my twitter rankings! Given, mine are not especially exciting, nor do or should people be especially interested in what I have to say. However, I think I should have the same amount of followers as Lance in a few years. (Please note Aussie sarcasm).

Fourteen. Yes, this is the number of times I have been called "Floyd" in the last two months. Sorry folks, wrong person. But I suppose there are far worse things to be called, especially when you are riding a bike in spandex in Southern California!

Until next time,

Rory Sutherland

rorysutherland1 - Twitter

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