Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Spring time

I was out riding on the bike path on Sunday evening and saw quite a few goslings being herded across the path by hissing parents.

So I went out Tuesday evening, and riding around Princes Island park, it didn't take long to find a whole gaggle of goslings.

It had only been two days, but it's easy to see how quickly they grow.


It was pretty cool to finally get some shots of them...after riding along the path to work in the spring of 2007 (my first full spring in Calgary) I've been meaning to get out the bazooka lens in the spring and go shoot some fowl. I haven't seen any ducklings yet...I wonder if their breeding season is a little later?

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Lack of Velocity in Edmonton

Been getting a couple of questions about last weekend's big event, being the first ABA race of the year, the Velocity stage race.

I spent the weekend prior putting the (painful) finishing touches on my winter of training, then participated in a mental-beatdown of a course in Edmonton, which ran from 8:20am to 9pm or later, every day, returning to my room to do my taxes and get in short spins. Avoided checking email and answering calls all week.

You can probably see where this is going...I got to Friday, shelved the programming mind-benders, and switched to thinking about racing. Only, the registration was only open Monday to Thurday. Saturday morning, the ABA officials were relatively unsympathetic, and I wasn't in the mental mindset to argue it.

I actually enjoyed having the opportunity to help my team mates over the course of the weekend. God knows many of them, or others, have helped me in moments of last-minute pre-race panic. I lent my rental wheels to team mates, fetched water, stood in the feed zone...all good things for giving back.

Was I mad about missing the race? Hell yes: this was one of 4 big races for me this year. Mad at the officials? Yes and no...this wasn't the first time I've been disorganized (although it may be the best excuse I've had). Also, it's hard work organizing a race, and some people were sincerely sorry to shut me down - others were complete jerks, but whatever...what goes around, comes around.

On to the next one...


A quick recap of the action: H&R Block rider Chris McNiel tore up the time trial in cat 1/2, a shade off a 50km/h average for the 10km. For Speed Theory, Thomas made the podium in cat 3, while up-and-coming cat 5 racer Mark J and women's powerhouse Marilyn both got 4th.

In the crit Mark MacDonald edged out Dan Wood in a awesome sprint finish, but Trev had a stand-out performance, trading pulls at the front all race and finishing with the pack. In the women, two Bici riders asserted their dominance, but there was a great showing by the big Speed Theory contingent, with those doing their first ever crit having solid races, and Tanya clinching the field sprint.

The road race didn't have too much out of the ordinary happen. Welchie crashed again. Big breakaways in many fields. The only things that got me pumped were strong showings by all the Speed Theory women, Harley's solid sprint finish, and Trev's 1.5 lap pull to catch the pack followed by an attack and bridge to the breakaway...awesome! He subsequently dropped out of the race and turned down a beer, but I think that was just to make us think he's also mortal. Unlikely.

Insert video of baby nieces walking here

Insert video of nieces walking here (hint hint)