Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Home... for now.

Back in Boulder as of last night and up early with my friend, jet lag.

I have tons of pictures and blogging to catch up on and it will happen little by little this week.

Here are some teasers:
Sold out crowds!

Cool little interview here. On that website you can also scroll around and find other great videos from Track Worlds. I love this one , not because it is a crash but how they are picking splinters out of the guys back and then send him back into the race. Oh, track cycling!

Ok, off for a sunrise hike at Sanitas Mtn. I love me some Boulder!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Nice Timing!

A friend of mine, one who doesn't read CyclingNews and most likely has no idea I am waiting to race the biggest race of my career thus far, emailed this picture today. He was cleaning out his inbox and came across an email/picture from Greg after I had my first Elite Track Nationals Podium... Bronze in the 500m.

Wow! That caused a pause and some reflection.

Bronze in the 500m on October 4, 2007.

3 years and 5 months and 19 days later I am about to race at the World Championships. Holy! It's been quite a ride and I expect the excitement to continue!

Thanks for the reality check email Geoff... if you even read my blog.

Last night was opening ceremonies. Basically, the build of excitement and an introduction of Nations.

3 year and 5 months and 19 days ago I had no idea who Eddy Merckx was...

That's it... racing starts tonight!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Here in Holland


Apeldoorn specifically. Home of Elite Track World Championships and lots of other bikes. Everyone rides bikes. Holland loves bikes.
There are bike lanes and bike lights and drivers that yield to bikes. Amazing.
Bikes are even used as decorations. Every other light post on this major "highway" has a painted bike hanging from it.
Not unlike where we were in Germany, Holland is very agricultural. This guy and his many friends live right outside our hotel.
Don't ask. I don't have an answer to this sign but I have ridden my bike past it several times and yet to see a frog.
Today was our first day in the velodrome. This may be my favorite track EVER. Hard wood, smooth, steep, round. The facility itself is maybe the nicest I have seen as well.
Again, a country that treats track racing with enthusiasm. I have seen a couple billboards with some of their local stars... this one is one of their women sprinters.
She's getting ready....
Ready to go fast!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Manchester Flashback

Since today was a rest day here in Germany and as promised, I will wander back a month or so when I was in the UK for the 4th and final World Cup of the season.
We got there a day earlier then normal which gave us a bit of time to actually check out the surroundings. Apparently Manchester is a very industrial city but we happened to stay very near the city center which seemed metropolitan.

Super old buildings... of some significance I am sure. We didn't have the time or energy to actually be real tourists... just ones who are in search of a good coffee shop.
In the city center.
My first event was the Team Pursuit with Kim Geist and Kristin McGrath.
As a team, we rode a PB (personal best). That is me 2nd wheel.
It's hard to explain to people in the US how big this sport is in other countries around the world. This 3 day event sold out each day/night session. I would guess the facility holds 3k-4k people. Pretty impressive and fun to race with that many people cheering!
The most talked about event from this World Cup was this little incident. Don't watch if you are squeamish or my mom. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rltqF-HT9iU

What should have been the most talked about event from this World Cup was Sarah THE HAMMER dominating the women's omnium. She never fails to amaze me... and inspire me. Congrats to Sarah! More rainbow stripes in her future! (for the non-cycling people- you get a "rainbow stripes" by winning a World Championship which happens to be a big deal.)

So, the second race of the weekend was the Scratch which didn't end up how I had planned. For once, I actually had the confidence of winning a race at a World Cup. Yes, seriously. I just said it out loud. I actually thought I could win it. Damn it for crashing! Thank goodness for not being injured but damn it for crashing. No splinters for me though! Congrats to my teammate Jennie Reed for taking the podium. Let's hear it for recovering sprinters in the scratch race!!!

So, that's Manchester in a nutshell. I am still not done filling you in on the rest of February...

Monday, March 14, 2011

Architecture

This morning I went on a solo recovery ride and had the chance to pull out the phone for some pictures.

What's this? Doesn't look like anything is in the picture. Exactly. This represents the area of Buttgen and surrounding towns.
These are agricultural communities. I was still shocked to see farm animals in the middle of towns.
Again, in the neighborhood.
Yep, I wasn't kidding. More farm animals in the hood.
Up close.

Now for some shots of the architecture. Any time I travel, I love checking out the homes.

Pretty traditional. Everything seems to be dark... brick, brown woods, dark roofs.

A little newer but...

Very typical town home type living.
A contemporary twist on the traditional townhome.

A little modern home using old materials I found in the middle of some random town.
A found several examples of people trying to add color to the monotone. Newer homes have painted brick or white stucco. This home tried to splash some color out front so everything didn't look so grey.
Even this random wall had some attempt at color. Can you see the colored squares?
I like this attempt!

Signing out.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

How to make a velodrome profitable?

... without 6-day races... every month.

In the three days we have worked out at the velodrome here, there have been three different sports taking place in the infield.

Hockey... on roller blades
Team handball... a sport the USA needs to learn more about. Very athletic sport!
And soccer. Ironically (my favorite!), this is the one sport I didn't catch on camera. For the record, these kids were so good at soccer. I think I was so busy being mesmerized by the skill level of these 8 year olds that I forget to get the camera out.

Now, for the smallest real bike I have ever seen at a velodrome...
For perspective...
And then the little dude attacks the big kids .on their apron warm-up

All is good in Buttgen! Check back for more updates. I am getting to be a regular on this blog thing.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Rest Day in Buttgen

I know, I still owe a lot of updates and not necessarily about this trip.

Today was a rest day and it flew by... didn't really clean out the email inbox like planned or finish my book.

Easy spin this morning on the sweet bike paths that run parallel to the streets. If you look closely, you will notice there is a wind power 'tower' in the back. They normally don't put these in areas that don't produce wind. :) Today was mild but we have felt it on previous rides.

A nice little touch for our dorm style hotel rooms. Thanks to Andrew Bettinger- USA soigneur extraordinaire!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Pictorial Review of Day #1


We arrived in Buttgen, GER without drama. Day #1 was filled with chamois time- road ride in the morning and track in the afternoon.

Here is our track session in pictures:

Taking it all in.
It is a steep track with some funny bumps.
and REALLY cold inside. If we could, we would train wearing parkas.
Andrew, "Betty", to the rescue with hot tea.... trackside.
Time for a little motorpacing. How do you start this thing?
"Hmm, Ben, do you know how to do this?"
Jones had enough watching the boys stuggle... so she took over.
Some team work.
Soon, she was up and running. In this picture she looks slightly cautious. It wasn't long until she was doing hot laps.
I see a future for Jones!

video

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Can't keep track


So, where was I? Oh ya. I had promised a race update and pictures from Manchester. Then I wrote about a whirl of travel to NorCal for Peanut Butter & Co team camp.

And, now? It's been a heck of a couple days traveling.

Sunday I raced in California... made it to my own bed in Boulder by 1:30 am Sunday night/Monday morning... unpack/laundry/repack/say hello to Greg and Elke on Monday... Tuesday I was back at the airport and on my way to Germany.

I will spend the next 10 days here in Buttgen, Germany in preparation for Track World Championships with Team USA.

I should have more downtime to update this bloggy thing this week. So, check back because I will begin the updates from Manchester and move toward the present.

Last time I was in Germany it was to pick up a car we had purchased and make a little vacation out of it. Looks like King Kong got the best of this car in the Frankfurt airport.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Much to tired...

Much to tired to blog, blog.

The only reason I scratch out a lame blog is to let my mom and grandma know where in the world I am right now. NorCal is the answer.

Actually, that is wrong. I guess I am in the Central Valley... or is this considered NorCal? Where in the world is Merced? Whatever. I will be back at SFO tomorrow.

All is well racing my bike with Peanut Butter & Co TWENTY12 and back to Boulder tomorrow. There is so much to catch up on... I don't know how I can backtrack when I can hardly find time to stop and smell the roses. (I am a lucky girl for sure!)

So, mom/grandma, I know I haven't called you back in about 5 days. There is good reason. Life is moving at the speed of light... now if I could only pedal my bike at the speed of light too. Hmmm.