Nationals Picture Party and more Good News!!

So a week has passed and Nationals is in the books, but the Superfly’s don’t stop rolling!!  A couple days of rest and we’re looking ahead…

Soren took the chance to head down to Vermont for the USCup Catamount Classic to show off her Maple Lead Jersey and test out the US competition.  With a strong Canadian contingent in the group, it turned out to be a full Canadian Podium, with Soren on the top step once again.  Soren is still also floating on Cloud 9 for making the World’s Team selection, and this only builds her confidence.

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Time to celebrate!!!

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Podium Selfie from Catamount Classic USCup

Karlee took the opportunity to put on her NCCH Road jersey and race with the Women’s Road Team at Ontario Provincials.  A rolling course and a tough group for the Elite women meant there was a lot of work to do, and Karlee was in the mix from start to finish.  Doing her part to help the Team, and still trying to get a strong finish, Karlee came across the line in a respectable 14th spot.

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Starting the Gravel Grind

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The Grunt is always tough

Mitch got some great news this past week – he’s also made the World’s Team!!  After his impressive season and great performance at Nationals, he too will be spending the next month preparing for Norway.

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Perfect form on the Boneshaker!!

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Resting and Planning his move

Peter and Jon … nothing exciting this week – but still a couple of great guys!!

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Looking so Pro…

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Working his way towards the front

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Focused and attacking for the whole race

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Keep checking back for more info about the Team as we work through the second half of the season and re-focus on our new Goals.

Trek Canada – Mixing it up at Nationals!!

This past weekend was one of Trek Canada’s biggest (and most successful!!) weekends of racing so far this year.  After several weeks of training on the course and learning all of it’s features, we were all prepared to test our fitness and chase the Maple Leaf Jersey.

Under perfect racing conditions, the weekend started off with Soren and the Junior Expert women.  After a great race in Sudbury, and countless hours on the course, Soren had a race plan in mind and stuck to it.  A strong start got her to the first piece of singletrack in second position, and she quickly took the lead on the following climb.  After gaining a small gap, Soren laid down the power and started to build her gap to what would end up being well over a minute by the end of the race.  Crossing the finish with her arms in the air and a huge smile on her face, Soren not only won the National Championship in her first year as a Junior, but also qualified for the World Championships in Norway this fall.  One quick day of celebrating is all she can afford… there’s still a lot of work to do!!

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In the Elite Women’s race, it became quite clear quite quickly that Emily and Catherine Pendrel were the class of the field, getting a gap on the remaining ladies.  Pushing a pace that Emily described as a “top 5 World Cup pace,” the 2 riders matched each other’s attacks until Emily let a small gap form with a lap to go.  Still chasing valiantly, she came across the line in second place, to the loudest cheers of the day.

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The field of women also included Trek Canada’s Karlee Gendron, who had a great start to be in contact with some World Cup racing women throughout the first lap.  Unfortunately, washing out on a downhill corner before a rock gap sent Karlee tumbling through the trees in a crash that made spectators gasp and hold their breath.  As a testament to her committment to racing, Karlee picked herself up, brushed herself off and clipped back in, doing her best to clear the fog from hitting her head and work through the battered muscles.  In the end though, Karlee made the wise choice to abandon the race to prevent further injury after being unable to re-focus and ride safely.

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The Elite Men’s field contained more than a few World Cup racers, and all of them were eager to display their power and skills on the challenging course.  Right from the start, small groups were formed while other riders made alliances to bridge the gaps and get back into contention.  All the riders in the top 20 were giving their all, planning tactics and throwing caution to the wind.  Adam Morka was stuck in No-Man’s-Land for much of the race, chasing down two groups of 3 riders just ahead of him.  After leading out much of the first lap, Adam settled in to a pace that did not get him closer to the leaders, but kept him away from any chasers.  At the line, an exhausted Adam came across with a strong 6th place finish.

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Peter also found himself in a chase group behind the leading groups, and was the driving force for much of the race, catching riders that had faster starts before dropping them from the group with his ruthless pace.  Starting the second lap outside the top 15, Peter worked hard to bridge up to a larger group before working his way to the front and riding them off his wheel.  Only one other rider was able to stick with Peter during this onslought of power and skill, and it was a race to finish for the pair.  It’s always impressive to see Peter race, and we can all learn from his skills, consistency, focus and execution of a race plan.  Congratulations to Peter for finishing up in 10th position.

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Just behind the Elite Men were the U23 men, and this year’s group contained many very fast racers who were in their last year of the category.  With Mitch defending his Jersey, and many other wanting to take it from him, the race had a very fast start.  Again, it was very clear that Mitch and Leandre Bouchard were the 2 to watch, with the pair of rivals (and friends) battling hard as they took turns at the front.  Several other talented racers tried to chase, but they were no match for the two leaders.  With a lap to go, Leandre made the decisive move, getting a small gap on Mitch that would eventually be the difference between the riders.  Never one to concede a race, Mitch fought hard right to the line to keep the gap small, finishing a very exciting race in 2nd position.

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With the Big Dogs done their races, the Sunday races featured the Relay and Master racers.  Several Trek racers took part in the fast and exciting relay before Jon hit the trails for his chance at the Jersey that eluded him last year.  With an aggressive plan in mind, Jon survived the usual Faster Master Start to come out of the first singletrack and take the lead, and never looked back.  After getting a small gap on his main rivals, he focused on staying strong and fast, attacking every hill and saving nothing for later.  A small gap extended into a large gap, and Jon had to use the field of 30-39 Masters, that started 2min ahead, as motivation for his chase.  To cheers from all around the course, Jon caught all but the winning 30-39 racer, coming across the line over 3min ahead of second place.  A great race from start to finish lead Jon to regain his National Champion title.

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With one of the Team’s major goals now complete, Trek Canada is now looking at the rest of the year, which includes World Cups at Mont Ste Anne and Wyndham, as well as a few more Ontario Cups, road races, Crank the Shield, Ride for Karen… and probably a few Cross races in there too!!!

We would all like to thank not only the fans that came to support us along the track, but also those who could not attend.  We appreciate your thoughts and encouragement.

We are very proud to represent the Trek Store, Trek Bikes, 2XU Compression, ClifBar and ESI Grips.  Keep posted for a Nationals Picture Party coming soon!!

Rocks and Mud at Sudbury Canada Cup

This past weekend involved a long drive to the great white Sudbury for the third round of the Canada Cup Series.  A punishing course full of rocks, roots, hills and some soggy bark chips that stole the power from your legs, was a true mountain bike test for all riders.  Trek Canada’s full team made the trip, including Guest Rider Adam Morka and our favorite alumni Emily Batty.  After settling into the hotel and heading out for Team Thai dinner, it was time to put the feet up and get ready for the battle.

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The first race of the day saw the Elite men and women as well as the Junior men and women – so most of our Team!!

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In the Elite Men’s race, the pace right from the line was Full Throttle with all the top contenders looking to lead and force mistakes by those who followed.  Mitch led a small chase group and worked hard all the way around the tough and hilly lap to bridge the gap, with Peter leading another chase group just behind.  Both riders gave it their all and fought for everything they could, doing their best to stay in control of the course and the riders who tried to hold their wheels.

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Always a force to be contended with, Adam started with the fast paced lead group and used his seated power to drive through the rocks and roots.  Although he doesn’t race very often, Adam is always in the mix, and uses his race strategy to maximize his results and minimize errors.

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In the end, Adam concluded the race with a great 6th place finish, Mitch came across the line in a solid 7th place and Peter finished up in 12th. Great work by all riders to not only lead the chase, but also finish ahead of the riders who followed.

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Soren had an amazing race, using the opening doubletrack to draft her way up to the front of the line before choosing her spot to break away.  Her smooth riding and powerful climbing allowed her to consistently build her gap after breaking free at the end of the first lap.  Passing many of the Junior Men and using them as a motivational goal to continue pushing hard, Soren came across the line with her first Junior Canada Cup Victory!!

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In the Elite Women’s race, it became clear that Emily and Sandra Walters would take charge of the race, extending their lead over the rest of the field within a lap.  After putting in a solid effort to get some space, Emily powered away from Sandra to come across the line clear by over 1m30s, and in fine form to defend her National’s Jersey next weekend.

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Also in the field was Karlee, who benefited from a great start and used the open power double track to her advantage.  A few small mistakes quickly cost a few places that forced Karlee to chase hard over the rough rocks and roots on a course that demanded full concentration. Another strong race for Karlee as she finishes up her prep for Nationals next weekend.

Sudbury 130Later in the afternoon, once the course dried a bit more after some night time rain, Jon hit the course for his race.  With no-one willing to take the lead off the line, Jon wound it up and started to take charge.  After chasing down an early rider who took a “flier,” it was once again Jon and Rob Holmgren at the front, with Jon putting in some good efforts and getting small gaps on the descent.  Last year, Jon suffered a flat within the last 1km of the race, and this year it was his competitor who flatted half way through the second lap.  With Nationals in his mind, Jon continued to push hard over the rough rocks and tough climbs to build a good lead before bringing it home safely (and with air in his tires) for the second win of the day for Trek Canada.

A quick pack up before getting back on the road to head south and home before a big weekend for the Team at the National Championships.  Keep posted for more information, and come on up to Hardwood on Wednesday July 16th for a Meet and Greet / Ride with the Pros starting at 5:30.  The Team will also be around for weekend if you want to stop by and say Hi, and be sure to cheer us on as we take on the course and the best racers in Canada for the Red and White Jersey!!

Trek Canada would like to thank it’s sponsors for their continued support, and we could not do what we do without the help of Trek Bikes, ESI Grips, Clif Bar, 2XU, ProGold and SRAM.

The start of a great thing

Trek Canada has been the destination for many riders coming from the Team Hardwood Trek program located just north of Toronto.  It’s a great program that starts kids at a young age riding, building skills, racing and most importantly – having fun and making friends!!  It is a program that many of our riders have come through and are still involved with.

Soren is fresh from THT and spent many years developing her skills and taking advantage of the amazing coaches.

Peter is involved by coaching the Gold Athletes, and has developed their race fitness, tactics and skills.

Mitch also spent numerous years involved in the program and has helped many of the younger athletes through camps and guest coaching.

Jon was also a member of the program for several years, and is currently putting his own kids through THT’s Bronze Race program which helps kids learn to race, train and have fun on their bikes.

Many of the best racers in Ontario and Canada have been involved in THT along their progress, including Emily Batty, and the program has received an extra boost of financial support from the Trillium Foundation to expand on coaching certification and program development.

Below is a video outlining some of Trek Canada’s athlete’s memories and opinions on THT, and some of the great things they do with the athletes.  It’s a great way to get youth involved with the sport and loving being active outdoors!!

Mitch Bailey – Mission Accomplished!

While most of Trek Canada spent some good hours on the Nationals course or re-building endurance before another hard push towards the Canada Cup in Sudbury and the National Championships, Mitch decided to spend the time in his car!!  After a good trip to Missoula’s USCup, he continued his drive towards the Colorado Springs USCup and beyond.

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Colorado Springs turned out to be another impressive ride for Mitch, although the hours spent driving, shopping and surrounded by unhealthy public didn’t prove to be ideal race preparation!!  Sometimes when you least expect great things to happen, they befall upon you, and Mitch was very pleased with his strong ride in a similar field to the previous week. Another top 20 finish among the beautiful scenery and equally strong field, before immediately getting in his car to face his next challenge.

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With the motivation of a close friend’s birthday party encouraging him, Mitch push forward for a 24hr drive to end up in San Francisco for some fun and school prep.  After even more driving around the city in search of apartments, Mission #2 was accomplished with the signing of a rental agreement before once again packing up and hopping on a plane to head home…. after many hours and miles of motion.  Phew….

A 10lb road bike?? WOW!!

Trek has just released their latest addition to the road bike line, the new Emonda, and it’s catching the world’s attention!!  The goal of the Emonda was the build the lightest production bike ever – and they succeeded!!  The Emonda SLR 10 comes in at 10.25lbs, and is a thing of beauty.  Amazing ride quality, beautiful lines, hand-built OCLV carbon and a combination of the lightest parts in the industry (and some that Trek / Bontrager created to maintain their vision of ultra-lightness) has impressed the world’s best cyclists and critics around the globe.

Check out the video below for a closer look at what is, and will continue to be, the bar by which all other bikes are measured.

No Rest for the Wicked

So for some of us on Trek Canada, these past couple weeks have been a good chance to rest, recover and re-train for the upcoming Canada Cup in Sudbury and the National Championships at Hardwood Hills.  As much as we all like racing, there are times when the body just needs to rest and sleep in it’s own bed for a change!!

But, there are always exceptions to the rule, and Mitch and Karlee are those exceptions!!  Mitch decided to travel the US following the USCup series before finishing his trip with a visit to San Francisco to deliver a load of possessions in preparation for his upcoming school year.  Mitch’s first stop along this route was the race in Missoula Montana for the short track and cross country races.  An enthusiastic group of current and past Nation Champions and tight corners on a short course made the short track race tough for passing and a true test of suffering.  Working his way through the field, Mitch ended up with a solid 7th place finish, and some tired legs before the next day’s cross country event.

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Again, a stacked field were off to a fast start, but Mitch was in the mix and racing well with the top contenders.  The course highlighted some interesting and challenges features, as is the trend with MTB courses these days, making it even more important to stay focused and maintain speed.  Race strategies sometimes change throughout the race based on different situations and physical capacities, and Mitch used this to help him cross the line in a strong Top 20 position.

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And sometimes you need to make some new friends along the way to help out in the feed zone!!

Feeder Friends

Karlee has also continued racing through the “break” with her NCCH Women’s Road Team at the Tour of Waterloo.  Since Karlee is a sprinter, she was used as the set up rider or the rider that was being set up for the finish.  A couple great days for the NCCH Ladies, dominating the podium on a couple days.  The road race was a combination of the faster elite men, elite women and master riders in the province, and held a very high average speed – 41km/h!!  Karlee and a team mate were the only women to stick with the main break of men, and Karlee was able to pull off a 1st place women’s / 4th place overall bunch sprint using the lead-out from the men on the NCCH Team.  A great weekend of racing for Karlee, and a perfect confidence boost as she heads into some demanding and challenge mountain bike races.

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Karlee is the rider second from the left…. hands on the hoods.

As for the rest of us – Peter has recovered from his TSE induced illness, Soren has finished school and is currently working on memorizing the Nationals Course, and Jon has enjoyed a couple weekends of endurance riding and building specific tactics that will be called upon in the upcoming races.

Keep posted for more updates on Trek Canada’s exciting lives on the bike, and adventures off the bike…