Thursday, July 7, 2011

Canada

I spent a week in Quebec for a race, the Tour de Beauce.  To get there, I drove the team van and trailer from Cleveland to Burlington, Vermont, picked up the riders at the airport and then drove another 6 hours north.  Even then, we were not as far north as parts of Maine or the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.  

Mountain Top Finish
From Canada!

From Canada!

The race was tough on the riders, and tough on the staff, too.  Each day (except the last) included a drive to the start and another drive back from the finish.  In between the riders were dealing with long, straight, very hilly roads.  Straight roads are tough on the riders because when they would come over a hill, they’d have a clear view of the road ahead, and twenty minutes or so to anticipate the next big climb.

Seven bikes, four spares.  Every day.
From Canada!

In Quebec they speak a language a foreign language that is hard to understand.  For example, here’s an actual quote from one of our the teams actual riders: “I thought I would go ‘cause it seemed like everyone was on the rivet.  So I went and got a gap but then I was blown.”  

In this picture, it was hailing on my tent but the sun was shining a block away.
From Canada!

The locals were no better.  For some crazy reason, they all spoke French.  I was okay with that until just past “Bon-jors” with I think means “you look tired.”  

High-speed cameras are required to stop the action when riders eat.
From Canada!

We had one day in Quebec City.  Very impressive place, even though I didn’t get to see much of the town beyond the race route.  Based on what I saw, I wouldn’t mind spending more time there.  Unfortunately I don’t have many pictures from the area but I did get one shot of a statue of a very famous Quebec resident: Confucius.  Really.
From Canada!

Next stop: Vacation! 

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