Back to Racing: Guadalajara World Cup

by / Tuesday, 28 January 2014 / Published in Uncategorized

It’s hard to believe it’s been over a year since my last World Cup with the Canadian team. With a shorter than typical season last year, and my injury this past summer, it was quite a different feeling heading into the Guadalajara World Cup. I had to re-think what my normal routines were, what I needed to pack, etc. But once on the ground in Mexico, it was like I hadn’t missed anything, and I was back in the groove.

The track itself was another masterpiece by Canada’s own Peter Junek. The transitions are flawless, and the surface (which is sort of like laminate laid on it’s side) is my favourite to ride. It’s super grippy laterally (you don’t slide down the bankings), but super fast!

The only interesting thing was that the organizers decided to re-paint the lines on the track shortly before we arrived. This would have been fine… only they somehow found extra-glossy slip-n-slide paint. Never before have I felt my tires slipping on the straightaways (where the banking is reduced). Luckily, with enough teams concerned about the safety, they had a team come in overnight, sand off all the lines, and repaint in time for the race.

Surprisingly, Mexico was COLD. Well, at least inside the velodrome it was cold. There were huge windows that remained open in the structure, which cooled down the track substantially overnight, and it never really seemed to catch up during the day.

Nevertheless, race day came quickly. I had done some decent times in training that week, so was excited to see what I could do in the 200m. With a new warmup, new approach to the time trial, and this race being my first real race back since the injury, I did not go in with huge expectations. I came out with a decent time, and learned plenty of things to fix for next time. It was a crucial experience; getting back into the international racing scene was another stepping-stone on my path to full recovery. I am still not where I need to be, but am heading in the right direction. It’s frustrating at times to realize the delay that this injury has caused in terms of my development, but at the same time, I am approaching each and every training session with greater motivation than ever before, determined to not only get back to where I was, but to continue improving!

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