January 30/04 8:01 am - 'Cross Worlds Pre-race Report
Posted by Editor on 01/30/04
Pre-World Cyclo cross Championships Report
"Team" Canada is now at the 'Cross Worlds, and sent in the following update:
We are no longer sure what number this report is so we will just call it the Pre-Race Report. Back on a North American key board as we are now using Ewan Nicholson Photography Inc.'s laptop computer. He is going to send it off from the press room IF everything works out..... (Obviously it did - ed. note)
Getting you up to date
Monday we left Belgium to head to France. It was a long drive so we split it up. Close to Paris it started to snow. That made things a little interesting but as soon as we got closer to Pont Chateau the weather started to improve and it was a balmy 5 degrees. It is now Friday and we have been here a few days and the weather is starting to get a little colder and cloudier. No TV, so we are not sure what the weather will be like for the weekend. We are kind of hoping for a cold morning so that the course is frozen, and then magically warming up to about 8 degrees air temperature just minutes before Sam and Wendy take off.....that would be PERFECT!!
Samantha and Ewan
Wednesday night we found these two back at the Hotel so it was good to hook up with the other part of the Canadian "Team". Unfortunately our problems with Air Canada continued. Samantha's only piece of new equipment from her only equipment sponsor, Reynolds, did not arrive with Ewan. Brand new wheels lost someplace between Calgary (NOT EDMONTON AS PERVIOUSLY REPORTED) and as of Friday midday they not only have not arrived but Air Canada does not even know where they are. PLUS Ewan has come down with food poisoning from some bad duck last night. Lucky for us Samantha ordered the duck as well but they screwed up the order and brought her the salmon. We are avoiding Ewan's room right now.... Thanks for taking one for the Team Ewan!! WOW at this very moment Ewan JUST walked into the room and is giving us a vivid description of his adventurous night...
One thing that you become aware of almost immediately in Europe is that riders wearing helmets are in the minority. Even on the course warming up or pre-riding the riders are helmet less. Some wear funny scarfs. Some wear hats, toques, head bands and weird funny caps. Helmeted riders are looked at like they are from space or Canada.
The Canadian "Team" has their two rental Opals. The Belgium team has nine vehicles including 2 huge trucks. The Canadian "Team" has one set of extra wheels IF Sam can buy or find another set of wheels. The Italians have 20 sets of spare carbon wheels with Dougast tubulars (white). All the teams have wicked uniforms. The Canadians are in their club gear. The support that Canadians get is lower than the lowest club support in Europe.....come on!! We just had to write about that a bit as it is kind of pathetic. We asked around and were not suprised that no other team had to buy their own national team uniforms and all their own gear.
Ewan is getting ready to head to town so only one more section....BIKES
There is SO much C-X bike porn here it is WICKED. There are more different kinds of c-x bikes here than there are regular road bikes in Canada. There are SO many kinds....but only ONE Surly (Shirly in Belgium) (or two if you count her spare bike as well) and only three Kona bikes (Ann Knapp, Tucker Thomas and SAMANTHA)
That is all from Norm in the first Pre-Race report. IF we have a chance we will write again tomorrow with more information about the course and the junior and under 23 races.
One last note: Happy Birthday to my MOM, Wendy's MOM and our friend Rumon Carter. We miss all you guys and wish you were here!!
The taper continues.....
Editor's Note: We have arranged press credentials for Ewan Nicholson, and he (and the rest of Team Canada) will be sending in reports and photos. Post your messages of encouragement in the Forums.