Shattered. What a day for a race. Lots of great trails and great people. So hot out there. I was sweating from places I didn’t know had pores. I really suffered on the uphill, but felt comfortable on the down. I felt like I was picking good lines and making good turns, but I was lacking in power and endurance.
I realized on the drive home that maybe doing five hours of yard work in the sun the day before a race isn’t a good idea.

Thx @islandcupseries for another well run race. You guys and your volunteers rock 🙌🤟 #gnarnaimo #enduro #mtbvi #yyj #mountainbiking #bikesarefun

Cycling Review

2018 was a pretty fun year in cycling. I took it easy not having the BCBR as a goal, but still had some training goals. Sue and I did the Chafe 150 Gran Fondo, but I also trained for, and raced in, the Island Cup series of Enduro races.

This post though is about my 2018 cycling year in review.

2016 was a build year for BCBR. At the end of the year I started my long rides, and was doing two spin classes a week. 2017 was a big year for me. Lots of cycling, running, and other forms of training all culminating in BCBR. After that race I took a while off riding.

2018 had me on my road bike quite a bit getting ready for the Gran Fondo. Oddly I was also racing enduro events in amongst my road bike training. I’m not sure if that helped my enduro races or not. I didn’t get many long mountain bike rides in, so I wasn’t as comfortable on my Covert as I would have liked. The fun part about some of those races is that I raced them ‘blind’ either not having any practice on the trails, or never having ridden them at all!

The Gran Fondo itself was an excellent getaway with Sue. We rode together the entire way, though near the end of our 80 mile event my back was starting to act up. I wondered if that was due to me not riding at my natural pace?

In the fall we did the annual guys road trip, and this time we stayed on Vancouver Island riding in Duncan, Cumberland, Parksville, and Nanaimo.

What do I see in store for 2019? Well, I can answer that easily since I am late to the game with this 2018 review. So far Sue and I have signed up for the 5 Boro ride in NYC. I would also like to race the Island Cup enduro series again. The final big ride is the Cycle of Life Tour in July. A 2 day 200km ride to raise money for hospice care on Vancouver Island. That is enough to keep me busy I think

Tzouhalem Stages

On Sunday I was up in Duncan and rode in the first ever Tzouhalem enduro. One thing I learned is that I am terrible with trail names. I’ve ridden at Tzouhalem a number of times before but really only knew a couple trail names. The Island Cup Series team posted the Trail Forks listing of the stages but I couldn’t tell if I had been on the trails before or not.

The event itself was a lot of fun. It turned out I had ridden pretty much all of the trails before, but I still felt like I was racing some of the stages ‘blind’. Some of the trails I had only been on once before so didn’t really know what was around each corner. Other trails I was familiar enough with but didn’t know where the end of the stage was.

Overall I was pretty happy with how the race went. No crashes, one close call with the front starting to wash out. I knew I was pushing on some corners. I think I could have pushed harder through some of the earlier stages, but I was having some wrist issues during the week and wanted to last all five stages.

According to Strava I set quite a few PRs on the trails. I really felt like I was flying down Double D, which is always a fun trail to blast down. Add in a closed course and it is easy to say that Double D was my favourite stage. I think I also did great with the chip sensors this race. I actually got a comment from the volunteers at the end of stage 2 on how well I was able to tap and get the beep.

After the last stage it was back to the parking lot for some recovery food and drink.

Results were posted later and I placed 29/61 in Intermediate Male. Tzouhalem Race Placement

This has left me in 18/72 for the series. Series Placement (4 races)

One of the things I really liked about this race was that the intermediates raced the exact same course as the experts. I’ve always been curious about how well I stack up against the experts but have never been able to really compare times. Well, my total time was 14:58.0. The last placed expert had a time of 14:41 😂 I would have been DFL in expert. Maybe I am in the corret category after all.