My prep going into Redlands was a little unique...and although it seemed to work I'm not entirely sure it'll be easily replicated again. Why?
Anyways, Redlands was a solid start to the season. The weather was awesome and not as deathly hot as it had been for everyone racing San Dimas the weekend before. Kenda had decided not to do the race so I was guest riding for Specialized Mazda Samson...it ended up being pretty much an entirely composite team because the regular team members were off on various adventures like collecting double world track champion titles (Tara Whitten!!!!!!) in the omnium and point race. SO COOL!
We had a good time in our super small borrowed jerseys though. Thankfully I was granted one of the few mediums because I looked the most ridiculous with the others amounting to approx. a belly shirt. Despite not having the most support, we did a pretty good job of flying by the seat of our pants and Moriah took on the managerial responsibilities in addition to pedalin her way through the race. And our host, Robert, was also a rock star in coping with having 6 girls take over his house completely. His house provided the perfect post stage race relaxation base. We finished stage 1 at about 1pm and so after a quick leg soak in the pool spent the next approximately 5 hours reclined in lazy boy chairs/couches watching parts of at least 6 different movies (21, The Prophecy, 17 Again, Twilight, American Pie 2 and X-Men: Origins to name a few; possibly the most random mixture ever). Ah the life of a cyclist. This is precisely the reason I'm happy to have some school work and studying to do this summer so I don't completely fry my brain.
Back to racing:
Prologue --> 3 miles up hill-ish. Good leg opener for the weekend and a bit of a realization that it takes a bit to get back into the TT-ing process.
Stage 1 --> Beaumont Road Race. Without the typical blustery weather it ended up being a way calmer race than it has in the past. Despite some nerves about the first QOM loop it ended up being a less challenging hill that it seemed from the car. I got stuck behind a crash part way up but there was enough of a descent to get back up to the front pretty quickly. Came down to a sprint finish with a pretty big group left over.
Stage 2 --> Criterium, 1 mile loop with 11 corners for 60 minutes. AKA lots of accelerating and equal amounts of hard braking. Again, it was quite a it easier than 2 years ago and thankfully we had a pretty clean race. Not so much the case for the guys... but if you watch the video below its pretty understandable why.
Stage 3 --> Sunset Road Race. Lived up to its usual pack and leg shattering nature. Basically a neutral roll out to the start of the climb and then up and down 9 times before shooting back into downtown for the finish. Its a pretty sweet course though and as much as you curse the climb while you're on it the narrow winding roads leading up to it and super fun to speed through.
And results wise it was a pretty good way for me to start of the season. The European racing to come is still daunting but a little less so knowing that I've got some form going in.
That brings me to the fact that I leave for Belgium in just over 48 hours!!! My new bike frame arrived in Canada yesterday so its currently in the shop getting built in a scramble so I'll have it to take over and test out on the cobbles, which I'm super stoked about.
Time to get some packing, laundering and general organization done. Actually, I guess that would require me to unpack first. ah well. Somehow I don't think complaining is going to earn me any sympathy