The Goal race for all Trek Canada riders has finally arrived, so it’s time for show Canada how good we are!! With some of our riders heading straight to St Felicien after the Canada Cup in Baie St Paul, it was a good chance to get a few extra laps in and settle into the Hotel Living again.
Trek Canada wants to thanks Zach Tatem from The Bicycle Repair Co. for taking such good care of not only us as riders, but our bikes as well. One of the best mechanics we have ever trusted our bikes to…. and a great guy!! Check him out if you need any work done on your machine – he’ll come right to your house!!
With what some call the Best Race Course in Canada having a few upgrades over the early summer, it promised to be a great battle between some great riders, and to add to the competition was a new factor – Mother Nature. She decided to dump LOTS of rain on the course the day before the race and througout the entire race weekend, making the course that much more demanding of focus and finesse.
Off early on Saturday morning was our Junior racers, and both Soren and Tyler were hoping to have another strong performance against strong competition. With new Ultra Traction XR3’s on their bikes, the mud didn’t seem that slick and the climbs didn’t feel as tough. Soren was having a great race after her usual fast start, and had broken away with another racer after only 1 lap. It was the 2 girls back and forth taking control and pushing the other into the Red Zone when tragedy happened. On a slippy rock and small ditch section in the AquaParc feature, Soren was kicked over the bars and landed face / shoulder first in the far side.
Her helmet broken, her lips bleeding and bruises already forming on her thigh, she was picked up by team mate Jon and her mother and taken to First Aid. Aside from the blood, it was determined that she did suffer some heat trauma and it was a good thing that she stopped racing, even though her competitive drive was trying to get her back onto her bike. A tough end to Nationals for Soren, but even the best go down, and this will be a learning experience for her for the future.
On the course at the same time, Tyler was testing his strength and skills again a tough field from across the country. A good start up a tough hill put Tyler in the right position to chase and work his way up through the field. Consistent pressure and aggressive riding on the double track helped Tyler move up a few places, while his tire choice and balance allowed him to avoid slipping out on the roots and rocks.
Junior riders are know for their lack of fear and willingness to go all out, and that is how Tyler rode his race from start to finish. Another strong performance from Tyler as he came across the line in 12th spot.
The Elite racers were up next, and we had 3 Trek Canada members in the Men’s field. Stacked with former National Champions and World Cup racers, it promised to be a full on battle of power, fitness, skill and ability to suffer. Mitch has a great ability to go hard and ride at his max, and proved he was here to compete with a strong start that put him in the Top 10 after the first lap.
Unfortunately, he is still looking for his Racing Legs after his early season illness and work requirements in Grad School in San Francisco, and it proved to be too much. Mitch pulled out after 3 laps and a good battle, but we all know that it’s hard to race at your best when you are struggling to get time on the bike.
Adam had a great start, using his huge power to stay with the leaders up the gravel climb before settling into a great pace after the first lap. The layout of the course forced the racers to remain focused and attentive at all times, with berms, rocks, climbs and chutes being thrown at you in quick succession.
Adam wasn’t quite in his top form after a struggle with recent illness, but was still able to fight his way to the finish line for an impressive 10th place – only 4sec behind last year’s National Champion!!
Peter doesn’t ever lead out the start, but is the type of rider that you always have to worry about because he is chasing you down!! Starting from just behind Mitch after the first lap, Pete charged forward with power and impressive skills.
People love to watch Pete race because he never gives up, and “Performs” for the crowd – standing when he gets the chance and throwing down a Moto-Whip over the high speed Container Jump!!! An impressive ride for Pete – finishing better than his number plate number – 7th in Canada!!
After the Relay Race on Sunday morning, it was Jon’t turn to try and defend the Maple Leaf Jersey, but it wouldn’t be easy with the biggest competition from previous years all lined up beside him. Knowing that a strong start was key, Jon was up the hill in 4th place, and worked his way into a break with another rider after half a lap. After the first time up the main climb, it was clear that his competition was not having a great day, so Jon took the lead and kept the pace high.
The 2nd of 5 times up the main climb, Jon had a small gap and knew that the time had arrived to snap the band, and put in a big effort to break free and out of sight. After that, it just became a game of catching as many of the 30-39 ridres and getting them between him and his chasers. With 2 laps to go and a nice lead, it was Jon’s race to lose if he found trouble, so he settled into a pace that would not build his lead, but would also not push the limit of his body or bike. Jon rolled across the line with his 2nd National Champion jersey in 2 years, and a big smile on his face!!
Trek Canada would also like to congratulate Emily Batty on another strong ride, coming in for a great 2nd place finish in the Elite Women’s category.
So at the end of a muddy weekend, Trek Canada returned to their respective destinations happy with the weekend, tired from our efforts, and proud of our Team. It’s time for a bit of rest before ramping it up again for the end of the season.