The week leading up to the Tremblant canada cup was well the definition of Quebec in May. Cold and wet was the motto for Tuesday through Friday.
Tuesday after getting settled we headed out for late afternoons ride in a couple of groups. I headed out with Ben Blake along the road to the backside of the mountain. The skies looked threatening but not unbearable at about the 25 minute mark it started raining then the rain started to hurt. That’s about when we did an about face and retreated back to the mansion. The evening i put on Without Limits for the kids to watch and get them pumped up.
Wednesday the mission for the day was a double workout, a ride in the AM and then chill for a few hours and head out for a second ride. The first ride I led a group around Lac Superior and again it rained, the ride was about two hours but took a lot out of people so most called it a day. I headed out for an afternoon ride but I soon discovered my legs were a little shot too from John Fischer hammering the climbs. The day was topped off with Ryan Atkins cooking team cooking up a nice salmon and fresh cooked veggies.
Thursday I headed out for a recovery ride, to spin out my legs, the rest of the team headed out to try and get on the course to turn a few laps and get used to the tremblant singletrack. Dinner was one of my favorite, chicken and or steak fajitas.
Friday was a semi chaotic day, with the course not be "officially" open till noon, it meant that after training we would be spending the afternoon cleaning instead of putting our feet up and relaxing. Friday night was my cooking teams night to shine. We had a big challenge ahead of us, with Kyle Fry pulling out a Lobster the night before. But Jane, Jacob, John and myself put together a simple yet delicious helping of Pasta with alfredo, or Red Sauce, (oh yeah full menu) We used a secret Thomson family recipe for a kick ass Mandarin orange salad. The meal was finished off with a banana split, brownie, ice cream, desert.
Waking up Saturday morning my legs felt fresh and ready to go. After discussing high vs low glycemic foods with Fry for a while we decided to put quick oats vs slow cook oats to the test on the course. I warm-up as usual and headed to the start line. My plan was to get to the singletrack in a top 10 position. When we started I guess everyone else just wanted to roll out nice and easy and I ended up getting a 30-foot gap at tempo. I rode in the lead until the top of the course on the first lap. When a group containing Zandstra, Toulouse, Raph and myself. We lapped through together and headed out on the second of five laps. In the first piece of singletrack Zandstra lost his chain and which jumbled things up and left Raph up the trail a bit and Toulouse and I wheel to wheel about 10 seconds back. On the main climb I went by Toulouse and rode up to within a few bike lengths to Raph into the single track. Raph was able to put about 20 seconds into me which I wasn’t able to close up on the climb and the gap grew from there for the next few laps till I was 1:45 back. Going into the last descent I decided to play it safe and make it my smoothest run down, to avoid any crashes and or flats. I was able to enjoy my ride into the village, which was nice to be racing in the top three again after a couple years.
The evening was highlighted by the final team dinner out at the pizza teria. Followed by a little walk around the village before catching a shuttle (thanks fry) back to our house on the hill.
I had a great time with the project especially meeting and riding with a bunch of new riders. Abig thanks to John Hughes, Nick Vipond and Kevin Simms who along with the OCA put together a great trip which saw a lot of high finishes(mostly 4ths for some reason)
check Fry's blog for some team shots http://www.cyclofry.blogspot.com/
Next up the canada cup at hardwood which is always nice to be able sleep in my own bed for.
A few choice quotes
"Its like riding aluminum all your life and saying carbon sucks"
"How was the OCA trip"
"Good. there was a shortage of chairs"
"Oh, this isn't the bike path?"