I started tapping this edition out in the UK, about a race I did in Spain and I will most likely post it in France. Oh the wonder of modern transportation. I am in the UK at present but only for a couple of days, and like I say by the time I post this I will be in France.
Lets talk about Spain! I arrived in Segovia, Spain on the 11th of June, after a 7hr drive from Souraide in Southern France. Ohh to be back in Spain. Last year I had my birthday in Barcelona after we had finished racing, this year I would have it in Segovia before racing. We were staying at the same hotel as last year and it was comforting to know that the same faces were present. If Spain was experiencing an economic down turn it wasnt visable in Segovia. Segovia sits on the high plains and is at an elevation of around 1000m above sea level. You can feel the lack of oxygen in the air even at this level and it takes a couple of days to get used to it.
In Spain, we were competing in the 2nd of three World Cup events, the first was in Roma (I placed 8th in the TT and 8th in the RR – 10minutes back! I was sick) and the next will be in Canada which we will not be attending.
I will spare you the blow by blow account of the racing here. Lets say I was very happy with the Time Trial result. The course was 21km, which is longer than usual, flat, false flat, slight inclines, straight, devoid of trees, hot and windy. Far from ideal conditions for a TT. I came 4th which is two places better than last year on the same course. The time back from first place was also better, last year 3mins – this year 1minute. My time was also faster by 1 minute, same course and worse conditions, most of all the other players times were a little slower.
In the Road race it was a different story. The course was 12km round x 5 laps the finishing straight for each lap was 750m uphill, cobble stones and a speed hump. I am not at the moment in climbing mode. I got dropped every time, fought to TT back on – the bunch split, one group of three beat the back group of five (the goup i was with) by 5mins. Tough going.
From Segovia we drove to Madrid then flew to Gatwick, UK. it was time to test out what Brands Hatch and the Paralympics Time Trial and Road Race course had to offer. Plenty of pain is all I will say – if your not going up your going down, no flat areas on this one.
Now I am back in France, back in Basque country, not far from were we stayed a couple of weeks ago. I arrived in Saint P’ee-sur-Nivelle on Thursday 21st June and have done some solid training through the Basque Hils. The riding has been very enjoyable! With this being one of my favorites!
Until next time.