Bruce Newton’s Post BC Bike Race Blog

Bruce Newton’s Post BC Bike Race Blog

It’s now nearly a year since I got home from riding in the BC Bike Race in Canada and the folks at Bicycle Superstore have asked me to offer my thoughts now that a bit of time has elapsed. Well, one thing I can tell you is I didn’t spent a whole heap of time on the bike for a while after the race finished. In fact, for the first couple of months It hung on the stand in the garage and gathered dust. There were a few reasons for that; firstly, my wife Jane’s injury which had stopped her at the very last minute (like the day before!) coming to the race was far from fixed. So her needs were paramount. The good news there is we’re now over the worst of that. There was also a heap of work that needed to be caught up on. How can 10 days away results in three solid months of weekend overtime? And there was just the simple fact that after 18 months of intense effort – more really – I was not all that fired up about riding. I was more interested in rediscovering the taste of beer, chocolate and even the occasional packet of barbecue chips. Mm chips, yum. But that junk food itch was well and truly scratched by late 2018. Moving the belt out an extra notch (or two) was a reminder that I wasn’t as svelte (ha!) as I had been. And so the Giant Trance started coming out of the shed. Just a few solo rides firstly, pretty basic, for an hour or two....
BC Bike Race 2018: Day 7 – Squamish

BC Bike Race 2018: Day 7 – Squamish

Stage 7 Presented by Shimano: Squamish Distance: 56km Climbing: 1681m Featured Trail: Half Nelson Results Morning temps for the burly 56 km final stage of BC Bike Race in Squamish were expected to be in the mid 20s soaring to the low 30s in the afternoon. Some of BCBR’s 90 Mexican participants might consider it a chilly spring day. On the coast we call it hot. Perennially a people’s choice favorite, the Squamish course was about to serve up a veritable smorgasbord of sumptuous singletrack. After a 5km warm up on asphalt to wake legs fatigued from six days in the saddle, tires hit dirt on Lumberjack, a swift XC beauty that traverses over to the dense Alice Lake zone. Once again overnight dew made the morning dirt super tacky. After Lumberjack, racers settled into ascending mode on the perfectly graded 50 Shades of Grey, followed by the techy, power move and rock slab playground. “I came here for two reasons, to have fun and to finish it,” said Texan James Childre, as he granny geared up 50 Shades of Grey in a line of racers as long as a coal train. Meanwhile among the leaders, a battle royale was underway. The always analytical Jeremiah Bishop was hoping once again to leverage his climbing strength to gain time on the faster descenders. But finding weaknesses in Geoff Kabush’s game is like finding fault in a saint; the defending BCBR champ and yellow jersey holder shreds as fast down as he pedals up and has the technical chops of someone who grew up riding West Coast singletrack. And Francois Bailly-Maitre...
BC Bike Race 2018: Day 6 – North Vancouver

BC Bike Race 2018: Day 6 – North Vancouver

Stage 6 Presented by Lululemon: North Vancouver Distance: 19km Climbing: 962m Featured Trail: John Deere A male rider racing in the top 30 and flying a foreign flag stops midway down Dale’s to adjust his seat height with an allan key. Wrong! You’re obviously not from around here boy. It’s day 6. Welcome to the North Store. Time to bust out the baggy shorts and activate the dropper post. During the mostly road ascent to the top of the first descent, any delusions about this 18km stage being a smooth and easy day were shattered the second rubber touched dirt and granite on Corkscrew. Minutes later, Pingu closed the deal. Sunlight filtered through the rainforest; a thread of North Shore gnar weaved among the coastal giants. Morning dew left a glaze of grease on the rocks and boulders. The dirt was as tacky as 60 grit sandpaper. Conditions - perfect. That is, for those who cut their teeth on steep, rooty, singletrack. For those who have only heard tales of the North Shore, it might be the ultimate singletrack test. They say mountain biking was born in Marin County; that may be so, but it came of age on the North Shore. Ya, I know, it’s been said before. Who cares? It’s true. Todays stage included a timed section, RedBull Downtime - a chance for all the participants to show their DH skills against the clock. Forever After is a classic Mt. Seymour favorite that allow riders to pump and flow at speed, not without some pedaling it represents a true taste of North Shore gnar. “This is our...