Tuesday, June 23, 2009

I saw my entire (huge) family in one week and most of Todd's.

Quick update (I'll add pictures later. Yes, I did wear a dress to the wedding I'm sure they are on facebook by now...): Monday - Colorado Springs ride, Todd left to pick up my brother Jer in Denver and hit the road in the VW to TN. I drove the house to Alamosa Tuesday - drove to Durango, hung out at Grandma's with Grandma and my full-timing Aunt and Uncle, rode around Vallecito Lake Wednesday - rode up Middle Mountain Road to 11k feet, threw all four dresses I own in a bag with bike clothes, took pets to vet and kennel, stopped by walmart to buy luggage, drove Grandma to Albuquerque. Thursday - flew with Grandma to Knoxville, TN, attended my brother Mikah's rehearsal dinner, hung out with my family. Friday - rode Mikah's road bike in Oak Ridge, TN, had a blast at Mikah's and Casey's wedding. Saturday - rode in 90+ degree heat and humidity, stood in front of the 7-11 fridge trying to cool off an hour into the ride, hung out with family some more, celebrated Father's Day. Sunday - flew back to ABQ, met up with Todd's Dad, step-Mom and two of his brothers and families to watch Todd's brother Jason race in a SCCA autocross race, rode in 90 degree heat with no humidity, huge difference, no problem. Monday - after Grandma's Dr. appointment drove back to Durango. Fit a bike, two labs that don't get along, a kitty and Grandma in the 2 door Nissan Frontier. Arrived back at Grandma's cabin where my Aunt and Uncle, cousins Mitch and Mona and families were there with their motorhome, 5th wheel, and truck camper respectively. I was at all times confused about which town I was in (I am used to changing towns every week not every day). Having a bike stashed in ABQ, Durango and borrowing one in TN worked out well for trying to get short rides in. I loved seeing everyone!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Teva Games and Colorado Springs

I raced my sister Erika Powers in the last two races which was fun. She usually races the Intermountain Cup Series in Utah.


I placed 12th in the Teva games, which I was fine with, and 18th in the Colorado Springs race which I am not at all happy about. This was my first trip to the Teva games and it was pretty cool. We could watch climbing, kayaking and dog jumping right there in the venue; but I'm not sure if anyone even knew there was a bike race going on since it took place on the outskirts of the village. Todd and I stayed in Breckenridge because there is no place for the motorhome in Vail. I LOVE the Frisco/Breckenridge area! There are bike paths and trails everywhere; there is even a paved bike path that goes all the way to Vail (I heard it goes on to Glenwood Springs).

My very poor attempt at taking a picture of a kayaker

The Teva games XC course was a pretty typical ski hill course with lots of fire road climbing. The downhill was the best part of the course but didn't seem to last long enough which was both good and bad; if you were behind a slow descender you didn't have to wait long before it opened up so you could pass.

The Colorado Springs course just was the opposite. It was a really fun course, all single track (albeit wider at the bottom) with lots of rock gardens and techy sections. This made it difficult to pass if there was a line of people in front of you. I spent more time trackstanding in the race than all the races I've ever done combined; great practice for my skills clinics but horrible for a National race. Allison did a good write up of how it felt on the course and the confusion at the start.

To make things worse, they came up with the craziest start scenario I've ever seen. In an attempt to spread things out for the pros and to meet UCI regulations, they lined us up facing backwards at the Start/Finish, “paraded” us over to a remote start, which funneled us through a narrow opening in the gates and ultimately had us lined up in the opposite direction, completely reshuffled. It was here that they let us know we’d be doing one lap fewer than originally posted, and that we’d be doing a much shorter parade lap than stated on the course description. Instead, they sent us up a twisty paved road with gates up the middle (effectively a yellow-line rule), had us do a tight U-turn, sent us back down on the other side of the same road, then through the original start/finish and into the single track. Quite a few of us in the second half of the field had to put a foot down and wait at the U-turn.

By doing this, they not only failed to spread the field out, they also violated UCI regulations by changing the course within 24 hours of the race start and by shortening the race to less than an hour and forty five minutes average; not to mention refusing to have a manager’s meeting the day before, another UCI regulation. Oh well. My legs didn't feel all that fast anyway, but I was moving up the entire race and could have used another lap.

The best part of traveling is meeting new and old friends. Thank you Jeff and Cammie Kennedy for all the help while we were here, course info, road workout routes, coffee shop, tour of downtown and BBQ! Next up I’m headed to Durango to see family, then driving to Albuquerque where I’ll catch a plane to TN for my brother's wedding (I need to get rid of this farmer's tan!), then back to Breckenridge for the Firecracker 50; this will be my first marathon race and I have no idea what to expect.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

NM Clinics

In May I held a race clinic, a beginner women's only clinic, an intermediate women's only clinic, a co-ed intermediate clinic, attended a kid's race camp and talked at an elementary school. I had a great time! Here are some pictures: . Acequia Madre elementary school 6th grade class:
The kid's LOVED my bike and asked good questions. Every single one of them had to hold my bike and say how light it was. See how everyone in the front row is touching the bike? They couldn't stay away from it. One kid asked why I had so many things by Specialized (helmet, shoes, gloves, frame). I prepared to tell him how I liked their products, how well they are made, etc. but another boy spoke up and said "because they sponsor her", these kids are smart. Truth is I have the products I have because they are the best, same with every part on my bike this year and I am still so very excited about that.
Another child asked if Magura forks are better than Fox forks (someone in his family must ride). I told him how much I liked the low weight, function and reliability of my Magura fork and how I really like the people who work at Magura. He was actually interested. I didn't expect these questions from 6th graders.
I was supposed to wrap up by 2:00 as the kid's had an ice cream social scheduled then, but they kept asking questions; I couldn't believe they would rather talk about cycling than eat ice cream. When the teacher mentioned again that it was time to go for ice cream it was as if no one heard! I received great feedback from parents and look forward to doing it again.
The spread at the May 15th Bike N' Sport Women's Clinic:
May 19th Pedal Queens (Intermediate) clinic:
Active Knowledge School Series Team Camp:
Brothers Hugh and Owen:
During one clinic I told Owen he probably shouldn't try one of the steeper downhill switchbacks because I didn't want him to get hurt. He said, "oh, it's okay, I signed the waiver".
The best clinic Thank You ever:

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Santa Fe Ride Pictures

I am packing up and getting ready to leave Santa Fe. Here are pictures from our last ride. Thanks to all our new friends at sf-mtb.ning.com for the ride and pictures. There really wasn't a lot of water, but those were the good photo/stopping spots.