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Going Epic: Myriam Saugy prepares for the Cape Epic
29-year-old Swiss endurance racer Myriam Saugy is training for the Cape Epic mountain bike race to be held in South Africa from March 24 - 31, 2007. She set a goal of participating in the Cape Epic two years ago. In this diary, she documents her training and preparation for the off-road stage race.
Saugy began mountain biking in 2000 and racing in 2002. She now rides for Team Texner BMC (www.team-vtt-texner.ch) and is a member of the Swiss endurance national team. Saugy races as an amateur; she is also pursuing a teaching degree in history and geography.
South Africa, March 26, 2007
Stage two: Sore knees and a bump in the road
Here I am sitting in the media office after a very long day on the bike. Today's the stage was 130km long. We started on a descending gravel road for 30km at over 30km/h it was good for the head as you think at this speed it's not going to take that long to cover 130km.
The problem is that section was followed by a beautiful 24-kilometers of singletrack. The scenery was superb so it took out of the pain as we started with a 12km climb on a stony, sandy track which was followed with a 14km up small ups and downs. We had to step off the bike quite a few times. I got scared when on the most technical part, Fabienne crashed badly. She had to sit for a while and now has a big bruise on her arm.
After that section we had 40km on a fast gravel road and we could stick to a 20 people a bunch. We had been already on the saddle over than four hours and that's where we really started to suffer. The heat caught up with us as well and maybe we didn't drink enough. On top of that we both started to suffer a little bit from our knees. So we made a few stop to stretch our legs.
The finish took us again on a very nice track sandy track. We were really happy to finish the stage third in the women's category again after all these troubles. Actually we were even happier to get to the finish in one piece because we suffered a lot today.
The recovery is not easy as we sleep in tents, which means that once we are in we still need to bring our bags to the tent and remember that's quite a challenge with our bags. However, our bikes are nicely washed and serviced by a mechanic during his off time, plus my teammates Jonas Vuille and Philippe Villoud who came in 10th today reserved tents for us - which make our lives as Cape Epic racers easier.
As I am writing you, the last racers are still coming in and I just want to have a thought for them because I can't imagine how harder it is for these guys that have been out there for over than 10 hours.
Ok, it's time for me to get a massage organised and I sorely need it I tell you. Tomorrow is again a long long day. All thoughts are welcome. We will need them.
All the best,
www.myriamsaugy.ch (personal website)