Sima's Blog

tales from the life of a nomadic cyclist

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Switzerland bound

Heading to Berne, Switzerland for our secong World cup on April 23rd.

Nothing like a beautiful ride after a 5 hour drive to Switzerland

Recon mission on the world cup course. There is a really steep 1 km climb right after this 'Nome Tree'

big10 foot tall bike on the world cup course, right before the descent.

Enjoying the scenery on a pre ride of the World cup course before the crap hits the fan on Sunday.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

European Trip'in

Crowds at the finish of Fleche Wallone

Team presentation at Fleche Wallone

I've been in Europe racing with the US National team for the last week. The other girls here are Tina and Sarah (from Colavita-Cooking Light), Meredith Miller (Lipton), Rebecca and Shannon Koch. Jim Miller is our excellent director and we have Walla Wolfgang as our mechanic and Benny Ma is our Swanny. It's been a great group, couldn't ask for anything more.

We flew into Belgium last week and raced the Fleche Walone. This is one of the Spring Classics, and the men's race starts before us and ends after our race. I can't believe I am here racing in Europe in one of the biggest one day bike races in the whole universe.

Ouch is a good way to describe my first race. I'd been warned about how hard it is to move around in the European peleton, but that was a great understatement. The field was 145 women, and from the start we would punch it, then all of a sudden someone would decide to grab a hand full of brakes....yikes! Come to a stand still, avoid collision, then game on again. I was so scared the whole race. Tina finally stopped telling me to relax, as she saw the panic sctricken look on my face not diminishing.

It was great to watch the crowds on the steep climb up the Huy, and the men's finish.

Our next world cup is in Switzerland, the Tour de Berne on Sunday April 23rd, then we head south to the Czech Republic and Poland for the Tour of Gracia. I am really looking forward to racing the Tour de Berne and getting another chance to play in the european peleton.

USA Cycling Van, styled out by Walla our Mechanic.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Pre- world cup days in Europe

Practicing riding on cobbles, and taking pictures at the same time...Shannon's got skills!!!

Scenic ride along a river in Nederlands

City center of Huy, near the finish of the Fleche Wallone in Belguim.

The Amstel Gold Classic course went right by our hotel a few hours after we arrived in Europe!
Day 1 easy ride in Nederlands (Rebecca, Sarah, me, Tina and Shannon)