Ericas Etchings 1
Posted on 12:05am Wednesday 4th Apr 2012
Noordelijke ATB Trophy; Norg, Netherlands
Our first international race (although, this all has been quite international for me!). The weekend started early Saturday morning when Mike showed up in the new van from Co-Operative Motor Group (Derby). This made it so nice for packing our equipment in the back as well as having room for me to sleep in the cab (which I did a lot of). We made our way South to pick up Ruth and then to the Eurotunnel vehicle transport train which is the largest in the world! I also learn that this 30 mile track connecting the UK to Europe allows the train to travel at 99mph and went 80% over the estimated building cost after its completion in 1994 (ooops!!!). It was amazing how efficient the train system was in loading and unloading cars and people so quickly. Once we were in France we headed North into Belgium and then Holland, finally arriving in Norg, Netherlands late Saturday night. On the long drive we saw team cars & buses for the Flanders road race, very cool!
We stayed at one of the fanciest B&B’s called Ky-hotel.nl. If you are ever in the area, you should stay there.
Sunday morning came quick! The race venue was pretty cool, lots of twisty trails, some sandy corners, very flat, and went into and around an indoor horse riding arena!
Being warmed up and having a good start is so important for mountain bike racing. I am so thankful to have Kurt Kinetic stationary turbo trainers to warm up right next to the starting area.
I had a good start sitting in 5th or 6th but struggled with the corners on the course and lost some time. On the last two laps I was fighting with 10th place. We were very closely matched but I made a mistake on the last lap and ended up in 11th. I was hoping for a better result place wise but I am happy with the fact that I am starting to come around and feel that my training is moving in the right way. There are now only 2 weeks until the RockyRoads.net UCI MTB World Cup at Houffalize in Belgium!
Overall it was a great weekend even though Ruth and I remained in our 17th and 11th placing. We are off to a good start so early in the season and ready to step it up! After the race I was riding around the small Dutch-speaking town and realized how blessed I am to be here racing my mountain bike, what a wonderful place to be!