Jun 29, 2012

Bonne nouvelle: Lex est de retour sur le Orbea!

La semaine passée j’ai été forcée d’abandonner les Championnats Canadiens sur route à Lac Mégantic.  (Voir en bas pour connaître sur l’histoire).  Suivant l’accident, j’ai pris deux jours ‘’off’’ et j’en ai profité pour faire visiter ma mère et mon frère à Québec.  Mon frère a spécialement apprécié les festivités de la St. Jean au Capitale National.  Le lendemain je suis allée voir la Coupe du Monde DH à Mont Ste. Anne.  Trois jours après ma chute, j’ai pédalé  tranquillement sur ma base d’entrainement Kinetic.  Le quatrième jour aussi, mais mon coup de pédale était plus vigoureux.  Et le cinquième jour, je suis allée jouer dehors…

J’AI FAIT LES ÉQUERRES!  Ça fait longtemps que j’entends parler de ce parcours réputé à Québec mais je n’ai jamais su où c’était.  Maintenant c'est dans mon repetoire permanent de parcours. (Ce qui est drôle c'est que en pédalant, j’ai remarqué que je l’avais fait sans le savoir que c'était ''les Équerres'' il y a presque 7 ans.  Je me faisais larguer dans ce temps, mais j’étais plus qu’impressionnée par le terrain et le paysage.  Je le suis toujours.)

C’est un miracle que ma saison ne soit pas terminée après une deuxième commotion et que je me suis remise aussi rapidement.  Je ne regrette pas de m’avoir retiré de la course et d’avoir passé deux jours ‘’relaxe’’ malgré que mes jambes voulaient aller jouer fort, c’était très sage.  Je continue à me surveiller comme il faut, mais à date je n’ai plus de symptômes. 

La prochaine course : 14 juillet à Boise ID (Twilight Criterium) suivi par Cascade Bicycle Classic (17-22 juillet) à Bend, Oregon.  Et, en
fin de semaine vous allez me trouver...sur les belles routes du PARC DE LA MAURICIE! :)

L’HISTOIRE DE CE QUI S’EST PASSÉ : Il y a une semaine que je me suis retrouvée sur la ligne de départ des championnats canadiens sur route.  J’étais allée deux fois déjà pour rouler sur le parcours.  Je commençais à connaître les bosses et les virages par cœur, et j’avais hâte d’aller jouer…

À mi-course, un petit bout après le feedzone où j’avais pris un bidon de Jeremy, le soigneur pour Optum, une fille derrière et à coté de moi m’a fait tomber, fort. Si par hasard elle lit cet article, elle saura que je vais bien...  J’ai cassé mon casque Lazer, j’ai graffiné mes genoux et un coude, et j’ai frappé ma hanche comme il faut.  Ma tête a cogné si fort sur l’asphalte que je n’étais pas conscient pendant au moins une minute, en tout cas, c’est ce qu’on me dit.  Pensant que je venais tout juste de tomber, j’ai insisté à mon directeur sportif, Eric que je rembarquerais sur mon Orbea.  Je n’ai fait que quelques coups de pédales avant de remarqué que ça n’allait vraiment pas, et que je devais abandonner.

Je suis allée à l’hôpital de Lac Mégantic.  On me posait beaucoup de questions.  On a fait une radiographie de  ma crâne, et m’a donné les photos.  J’aime pas ça quand on regarde en dedans de moi comme ça, j’aime mieux me considéré comme une personne et pas comme un squelette avec pleine sortes de tissus autour.  C'est quand même cool comme photo...

Jun 23, 2012


2012 Canadian Road Cycling National Championships was a race I had been looking forward to for a while.  The course was an undulating out-and-back section starting and ending in Lac Megantic, with two laps of a loop in Lac Drolet at the furthest extremity.

In the loop, I was cheered on the steepest section of the course, feeling pretty good.  We went through the feedzone.  I covered an attack, brought it back, and talked to my teammate about strategy.  The next thing I know...BAM.  And black.  And blue.  I hear the peloton was starting to get pretty sketchy around that time, I'm sure I was taken out from behind.  (**FROM BESIDE! A certain girl took me out from beside...I know the story now, and it's not pretty).  I got up as fast as I could, but apparently I had been out cold for a minute.  I said I wanted to get back on and ride, and I did.  Then I realized something wasn't right and let off the gas right away.  I took myself out of the race. 

My head was hit pretty bad and I thought I had a concussion.  I was brought to the hospital.   I know better than to mess with that stuff.  It's nasty.  One thing I'm happy about though, is that I had my Lazer helmet on, and fitted correctly with the dial adjustment.  It's cracked now, it absorbed most of the impact, and my brother Max said he wants it as a trophy.  Okay brotha, it's all yours.
I was taken care of very well by the paramedics, the nurses and the doctor.  Nothing was broken.  I learned from my stretcher that Denise Ramsden, my teammate who just got selected for the Olympic team for London WON.  Joëlle Numainville played her cards perfectly and got a 3rd place, and Annie Ewart climbed up on the thrid step of the U23 podium as well.  You girls raced perfectly, and the excellent news made my day.

Jun 21, 2012

Canadian National Chapionships 2012 : Pre Race

The 2012 edition of the Canadian National Road Cycling Championships is being held in Lac Megantic in the region of Beauce, Québec.  It's a bit of a hike from Québec City where I live, but it's a treat that the Championship is being held in ''my own backyard''.  I know what it's like to haul everything across the country on my own for a race: stressful and expensive.  

This year, Optum pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies has a team of 3 super staff, a big trailer full of all of the Orbea bikes and HED wheels we could need, and I didn't have to spend hours on long-distance phonecalls negotiating hotel prices, and I won't be doing my own mechanics on some company's front lawn either.  (I'm thinking back to 2010 in Edmonton here, a fun race, but geez, what a feat it was to even participate).

I know the course, I've been out to see it a few times.  I've been on a nice spin today, and I'll spend a good part of my day chilling out in my hotel room.   Race day: T-1 and counting.

ONE MORE THING: The news is out, it's official! Congratulations to my teammates Denise Ramsden and Joëlle Numainville who are going to the OLYMPICS in July!  My two Optum teammates along with Clara Hughes are going to make a super team.  I'm happy for them, happy for Canada, and know that they are really going to rock it in London. 

Jun 18, 2012

Dark Cycle Clothing

The World Bicycle Relief and Lex Albrecht 2012 Raffle (click here for more info) is in full swing.  An Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies cycling cap, official Optum shoe covers, and now a Dark Cycle Clothing cycling t-shirt have been given away!

Every day for one week I posted a photo of one my Dark Cycle Clothing t-shirts.  I have a ton of them and I love them all.  It's like ''Down by the bay, where the watermelons grow...'' in my closet, and totally bike themed.  What's better than that?  Check them out here:
There are tons more cool bonus prizes to be won every week, not to mention the grand prize of a Kurt Kinetic Trainer that will be drawn in September.  There will probably even be another Dark Cycle Clothing shirt coming up...hint, hint! 

Check out www.darkcycleclothing.com if you just want to skip to it and buy one of their shirts, they have some cool stuff!  Thanks Dark Cycle Clothing, and best of luck to everyone who has donated and received raffle tickets.  $20 for a great cause, and lots of fun stuff!

Jun 8, 2012

Still a Girl, Under the Mess!

I spit all over my face, blow snot rockets meters away from my bike, get bad chafing when I'm really unlucky, and sometimes have a bit of blood on the wrong side of my skin.  Bike riding isn't gross, but it is no beauty contest. 

Return from a recent, long, bike ride where I got especially dirty!
Thanks to Velo Gioielli who has helped me keep up with my more feminine side though.  He's an artist who has created a few custom pieces that fit with my Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies kit. 
Check out these bracelets and earrings, made from chain parts, and spoke nipples!
Velo Gioielli has a shop on ETSY (http://www.etsy.com/shop/VeloGioielli) if you want to check out what he has in store.  It's a lot of fun to browse, and he's more than likely to have, or be able to whip up something that suits you to a T. 

I'll be wearing some of my jewelery from Velo Gioielli at the Air Force Classic Bicycle Race criteriums this weekend in Arlington, VA.  Is it enough to distract from the mess of mucus and sweat that I'll manage to make?  Come by, say hi, and have a look! 

THANKS for the jewelery, I love it!

Jun 4, 2012

Who Won The First WBR Raffle Prize?

Optum Pro Cycling presented by Kelly Benefit Strategies has teamed up with World Bicycle Relief (www.worldbicyclerelief.org) to raise money to send specially designed bicycles to developing countries overseas.  Check out one of WBR's videos, above.

On September 17, 2012 a Kurt Kinetic Road Machine Trainer will be drawn as a grand prize in a raffle to support WBR and Lex Albrecht's 2012 season.  Check out all of the details on this website, by clicking the ''WBR Raffle'' link in the bar across the top of the page.

Today, the first weekly bonus prize in the WBR Raffle has been drawn!


Sara's ticket will go back into the final draw for the grand prize. 

Prizes are drawn weekly, so the earlier you get your tickets, the more chances you will have to win!  Thanks to everyone who has bought their tickets so far, and good luck in the upcoming draws!

Jun 1, 2012

How the 2012 Exergy Tour Ended

The final stage of the Exergy Tour in Boise, ID was only 75km long but the hills were relentless!  For the first time during the Tour, the sun was out full force, perfect for racing.  There were oodles of spectators all over the course.  I even spotted our new friend Grace Alexander, an up and coming cyclist who Optum rode with two days before the beginning of the Exergy Tour.  There were plenty of costumes too.  I was fortunate enough to get a picture with the scantily clad devil painted in red bodypaint at the end of the day.
veloimages (steephill.tv)
 A freak accident took out two of my teammates, Janel Holcomb and Courteney Lowe only 50m after the start line.  Exergy Team set a very high tempo from the start, and although the game plan wasn't necessarily to launch any, we had to work hard to cover attacks from the gun. 

Carmen Small ended up in fourth place for the day, just barely missing the podium.  Häusler from GreenEdge took the stage win, and Neben from Specialized-LuluLemon won the overall GC.

I was pooched after the race, and crashed down on my hotel bed, fully kitted up.  I even had my Mavic shoes and Lazer helmet on still.  My nap lasted at least 45 minutes. 

Exergy Tour put on a rodeo for all of the riders to celebrate the end of the tour.  Adrian lent me his rubber boots (I pretended they were cowgirl boots, and still wonder to this day if I fooled any of the real cowboys with them).  I rode a horse, a mechanical bull, ate the most tender steak of my life, and watched my first ever real-live-rodeo.  Exergy gave every rider a genuine cowgirl belt buckle.  Special edition.

Thank you Optum, thank you Optum staff, thank you Exergy, thank you to all of the sponsors that support myself, Optum, and women's cycling.  The Exergy Tour was awesome.