Team Cyclingnews.com - Down Under - 2004
Booischot Kermis, TEAG Rund um die Hainleite
Boo Yah in Booischot; Hangin' on in Hainleite
By Cody Stevenson
Well sports fans, it has been a while since my last report.
In previous editions of my diary, affectionately known as "the suffering", I was beginning to gain some form and the general well-being of the team was lifting. Everyone was starting to gain some results and we were riding as a more coherent unit.
I had a small building period of training a few weeks ago in preparation for the tour in Spain, Circuito Montanes. This meant a lot of k's, and some smaller Kermis races. I managed to fulfill my training requirements and still picked up a few results with a fourth placing at the Meise kermis and a 20th at the Puivelde pro kermis, where Chook was fifth.
Still keeping the training load high, we raced our local Kermis in Booischot, the town where we live. So we lined up with 10 riders and after having done 100km in the morning I was ready to race, albeit a bit tired. We were in every move and Erik managed to win solo, with Cameron 3rd, Sven 6th, Robbie 9th, David 14th and after a perfect lead out from Ricey, Funky and Chook, I won the bunch kick of 80 riders, with Chook hanging on for 29th! So, we were happy, the management were happy, and all the local sponsors were happy! Apparently hard work pays off!
The next rendezvous was Germany; it was certainly going to be a different kettle of fish with the likes of Ullrich, Zabel, Mancebo, Petrov and other riders from T-Mobile, Saeco, Illes Balears and Gerolsteiner. We also had a film crew from cycling.tv with us filming a documentary about our team. They were basically just following our every move for the weekend... including being stuck in a major traffic jam on the way! We stayed in a great place, with great food and nice people in a town called Erfurt, which was towards the Czech border in a very beautiful part of Germany.
The course consisted of a 145km big lap, and five local laps with a 1km climb each time, making a 190km race. The big lap did not have one flat bit of road, and a 5km climb. In the team meeting the night before we were all assigned our jobs and I was given domestique duties due to the terrain.
As we rolled out, it was flat out from the start and we covered the first 50km in an hour! The peloton had the good sense to not race all out up the 5km climb, and I managed to only get dropped just over the top of the climb and after a gnarly descent I was safely in the bunch by the time we hit the bottom.
I then went into helper mode and did the normal bidon retrieving from the team car, taking extra clothes from my team mates etc., etc. When we hit the finish circuits, I was just trying to hang on; I managed to finish in a small group a few minutes down, as did most riders as it split to pieces in the final.
I had done my job for the day, and the manager was happy so I was happy. The other guys managed to do their jobs also and Phil and Erik finished in the group sprinting for ninth... Zabel lead that one home! All in all, it was a good day for the team and I hope to return to the TEAG Hainleite race again next year - we got stick on numbers like in the Tour! Now it is off to the Ardennes for our final training preparation for the next four days before we go to Spain in two weeks.
Oh and Andy, ride your bike! It's to cold for rock climbing!
Ten four rubber ducky,