Archive for 21 May 2014

So I’ve been a bit busy lately.  I know it’s no excuse for not writing a blog post, but if you don’t write the post right after it happens, then it doesn’t really matter when you write it as long as it get up there…  Right?  At least that’s what I tell myself to make the little man inside me happy…

P2A 2014:

This year’s Paris to Ancaster was another GREAT success, aside from the results at least.  I made it in with plenty of time to get over any residual jet lag from the long haul back over the Atlantic and had a few good days of visiting with the in-laws and being well taken care of.  The School of Cross pre-ride and mini clinic went off without incident and thanks to the Norco Factory riders Evan McNeely and Andrew L’Esperance for showing up and helping out!  I’m stoked to get to do the pre-ride every year because I get to see what the mud-chutes look like ahead of the race which is some much needed bata before the big event.  And as it were, they were in rough shape.  It had been pretty dry and nice closer to the weekend, but the grounds had been open to a lot of the wet stuff leading into it.

P2A Start Line

Photo Credit: Jeremy Allen

Race Day:

I was also pretty excited to see how many big names showed up this year, many former winners, big names from the States, and even a very strong Canadian contingent of guys ready to swing some arms.  In the past it’s really been just a few top racers attending the race who take off early and are never seen from again, but word is out on P2A and it’s attracting a bit crowd of top end riders.  This year is the first of many I hope.

P2A Action Shot

Photo Credit: Jeremy Allen

Off the get go it was pretty hectic which it always is with people who shouldn’t really be up front going balls out to get a good start only to soon be slowly shoveled to the back of the group.  As it was really only my second race type effort in the year my start was one to forget, and after some crafty positioning on the first rail trail, I was soon back at the pointy end of the bike race.  After the first major turn off the rail trail the group basically shredded into small groups and the lead group was formed.  We all worked pretty well together with a minor bit of team tactics happening off the front, and although it was a really hard slog this year, the group stayed together for the most part.  That is until Mike Garrigan bobbled on a really rough sloggy section which was also starting to get close to the end and the speed from the pack started to ramp up.  The game was officially on.

P2A Drilling it

Photo Credit: Jeremy Allen

With the speed ever increasing, we all plowed into the mud chutes full bore and whoever rode it cleanest could actually make up quite a bit of time.  Going into the second and final one there was a bit of hargy bargy followed by lots of mud.  I ended up having to put a foot down at one point only to find out the spot I stepped in was a foot deep mud so my foot disappeared along with my rear shifter.  After I got up I ran to the end of the chute leaving it just behind Evan McNeely only to discover that my rear shifter was no longer working.  I let out a few not so nice words, followed by a couple gentle love taps on the shifter only to finally realize my race was done.  I felt pretty good, but sometimes luck is just not on your side.  At least I had fun racing with the boys!

P2A Finish Face

Photo Credit: Jeremy Allen

Next up, Honeymoon in Iceland followed finally by ever so cool MTB racing in Europe!