12 months, it’s been 12 months since I started training for the 2016 season. Since then I’ve been to Tasmania, Malaysia, Dubai, Canada, and 20 some states. There’s been some rest here and there, but the offseason hasn’t actually officially begun yet. Last year, I took a leave of absence from cyclocross. A broken Scaphoid during a crash with the cookie monster at Redlands 120 had left me healing. Thankfully I was still able to race the world champs, and then the offseason commenced the beginning of October.
Then again this year, I had a little scare before the cross season even started, crashing head over heels onto my wrists during the second day of Chris Thater. The doctors were worried I did another scaphoid so put me in a brace for 2 weeks. Luckily the break never showed up, and I just had to handle a bad wrist sprain. The guys will probably never let me live down, (after a few drinks) standing in a qdoba line after the race, saying “my hands are broken, they’re both broken, this is it, I’m done”.
Once the hands healed up, I came out of retirement and headed back into the sport all mud eyed and mushy tailed. Van Dessel came out in support, setting me up with new cross bikes; such a great company and I was stoked to be out racing again with them. It was fun catching up with the cyclocross scene. It’s always a super fun/relaxed atmosphere, the exact opposite of the racing though. It’s amazing how good full time CX guys are. Road fitness definitely does not directly translate to cyclocross fitness. I have so much to learn when racing against the top guys.
Cross is hard. And there was a lot of mud there for a while. Somehow, I didn’t crash in the mud (too often). I had a decent streak of results and a few victories, but then the bad luck came. I was leading a race and flatted, and then I flatted after making the front group on the first lap of DCCX a week later. Then this past weekend, I drove to HPCX; my favorite course of the year, only to DNS after two pre-lap rides.
The night before I walked into my basement and found a pipe exploded and leaked water all over our basement. Carrying the soaking loads of laundry aggravated a nerve in my back. If that’s not the most weak armed cyclist story you’ve ever heard, then I don’t know what is. So the offseason is right around the corner. But there’s one more hurdle. China.
Astellas and the boys are getting back together. A reunion tour in this little place called Fuzhou China. (really hoping they have karaoke in the stage race hotel) The UCI race is a 2.1 Stage race, and the promoters sent us an invite and they’re going to pay us to come. FREE TRIP TO CHINA! I’ve always wanted to visit China, and since I’m getting married next September, I figured this would be a good time to do it. The only downfall is the training part, well…the training is about as good as a screen door on a submarine.
After that, I’ll take a few weeks off and get back into the 2017 Season. The 2017 season…That feels good to write. As most people probably read the article on cyclingnews or at least heard about our team folding. Obviously a massive disappointment, not just from the job aspect, but from the friendship aspect. I made a lot of good memories, and friends from my teammates the last two years. The management were kind, honest, awesome people who I look up to, and appreciate what they did to better the sport. It’s always a shame when companies decide to move on to different ventures during the middle of a season, but sadly…..That’s bike racing.
But thankfully, I have been given the opportunity to sign with a team that I believe will best suit me, and holds dear a lot of the values I hold. It’s a really exciting opportunity, I can’t wait for the press release and the news that comes with it. Fortunately, I’ll remain at the professional level for another year, and live this crazy dream.