Canadian Road Nationals
If it was easy everyone would be doing it!
It’s been just over a couple of weeks since the end of the 2019 Canadian Road Nationals in beautiful Beauce, Quebec and I have had some time to reflect on just exactly went wrong. I once saw a video that said you picked the worst sport, and I think it’s true lol it was definitely a love hate relationship with my equipment for both the time trial and road race. Prior to leaving I brought Destiny (my bike) in for a tune up and to make sure everything was working well. It was and the bike was running great the day before the TT as I was riding the course and getting ready for the pain that was about to ensue over the next 2 days. The pre ride was great and I headed back to the hotel for an already packed dinner and a good night’s rest.
The next morning when I arrived, my coaches Blaine and Chantal were pulling my bike out of Sophie (my truck) and setting up my bike on the stationary trainer for my warmup. Everything was going great and it was a beautiful morning until the warm up started. Within a couple minutes of riding I noticed my gears acting a little funny but didn’t think too much of it until the warmup was nearly done and I needed it to be looked at by the coaches.
Unfortunately when you plan everything perfectly from warm up to race there is not any time in between to be tinkering. We did what we could but I had to set out with faulty gears. The course was tough and within a few minutes my chain dropped off the cassette while shifting and had me pulling over to get assistance. This is the first time in Time Trial racing that I have had to pull over to get help. When seconds make the world of a difference in this sport, my 3 minutes felt like an eternity. I got back in the race and did what I could but still finished way down.
(Myself, Coach Blaine and Chrissy)
Upon returning we diagnosed the issues best we could and got the gears working well again but noticed a slight bend in a part that could be causing the issue. I went home to another pre packaged dinner by yours truly and got another good night’s rest. I felt confident going into the race knowing that I was faster and stronger than ever! I was ready to race with 5 of the best riders in the world the next morning. When that gun went off I remembered just how challenging this course was. Gearing was something that I suffered with last year and I purchased a bigger set this year to help with the hills. It only helped a bit and with the mechanical issues I truly couldn’t race properly. As I crossed the start finish line for my 6th lap I was in a world of hurt. I was wishing for another gear, so I could spin a bit faster and not feel as if I was pulling 160lbs every rotation (Me+Destiny). Needless to say, I learned a lot this year as this sport is ever evolving.
Over the past couple of years I felt as if I have been playing catch up and finally I feel as if progress is being made. Timing is everything and in this sport you cannot rush the gains. It’s a slow, muscle burning, heart pumping grind. As with anything, when you put in the time, you will get better. It’s even better when you see the results like at Defi back in early May. It’s amazing to see how far I’ve come when literally at this time last year I didn’t even look at my bike as I was ready to throw in the towel for various reasons. I’m just super thankful to everyone who got behind me and wouldn’t let me quit on my dream. None of you will ever know the difference you’ve made by simply believing in me. Selection for Tokyo is only a few months out and nothing is impossible. I will continue to fight tooth and nail in pursuit of the ultimate goal. A special thanks goes out to my sponsors Propel Physiotherapy and K&K Recycling as well as all of my supporters out there. I wouldn’t be here without all of you!