Sunday, August 26, 2012
Stage 6 Golden to Boulder For a continental team, today is what it is all about. Serge (Serghei Tvetcov) was really coming into form throughout the week. After a tough first day with the Garmin boys smashing it from the gun, he finished with Cadel Evans 12:43 down. Day two’s greetings were much better, and he finished in 39th only 51 secs down on a very difficult finish at Crested Butte. Given the lost time on GC and plans later in the week to spring Freddie for a sprint win on Friday, Tad (director) instructed the team to ride smoothly to the Aspen Finish. The instructions remained the same for Beaver Creek where Jens Voigt benefitted from the peloton apparently having similar plans. We were anxiously awaiting Friday’s finish into Colorado Springs. Unfortunately, the combination of altitude, poor air quality from Colorado fires, and Freddie’s asthma caught up with him. Despite progressively moving into perfect position in the 3 lap criterium-like finale, Freddie’s lungs were not feeding the legs well enough to finish off the sprint. However, the only bright spot was Serge was able to pull him into position before Freddie waved him off, confirming his on coming form. There was some disappointment in the team meeting on Thursday night, but this was quickly dismissed. Attention was directed to the mountaintop Queen stage finish on Flagstaff in Boulder. After huge efforts early in the week to gain KOM points, Boulder resident and GC guy, Cookie (Matt Cooke) was trashed. However, his local knowledge was invaluable in reconnaissance of the course. Serge and Andres were to go on the attack, with Matt, Freddie, and Morgan to finish in the pack.
Monday, August 20, 2012
Durango to Telluride 126 miles in 4:42, averaging nearly 27 mph despite 8800 ft of climbing. Impressive, what a way to start the tour! From the beginning... The guys get their bikes in the morning after Josh has dialed the machines in over the preceding 2 hours . Nearly everyone has some bit of a routine...hurried, laid back, diligent. Many of the the guys will write down notes regarding the course. Here is Sergei's...came in handy as he was in the main break of the day with all of the big hitters.
Sunday, August 19, 2012
T minus 1 with Team Exergy So the fitness has been gathered over the prior months and the team patiently awaits the last big race of the year in Colorado. It has been solid year for the team, but you can see the toll it has taken on the riders and staff. There is certainly a different sense from everyone in comparison to the first big stage race of year at the Tour of California. So, other than pitching in a hand for any odd job that needs to be done, my primary role is to help everyone recover as well as one can from day to day. Though I certainly can’t help anyone gain fitness, I can make sure I provide the best tools available for the guys to get ready for the next day. This includes Recovery Pump System to flush the legs pre- and post- rides, cooling system for the hot days, optimal nutrition that is easy on the stomach yet provides adequate calories and nutrients, and addressing musculoskeletal ailments from saddle sores to road rash. These are items available to every team, but you would be surprised how easy it is to neglect recovery when the cyclists and staff are fatigued. The Recovery Pump System has been a great addition this year. We are able to get the guys in the “legs” for as much time as they want each evening. It really makes the soigneur’s job that much easier; the general comment is how much more supple the guys muscles are in comparison to when we didn’t have them available. I haven’t seen anyone run into a problem being in them too much…and trust me, some of the guys stay in them for a good deal of time. I have found the graduated, optimal compression pressure and quick cycling of the pressure to be key components that separate these compression boots to others on the market. And it is key that they are easily transportable…we don’t have a problem throwing them in our bags for flights or the day transfers during the tour.