Team Giant Report, Scotland World Cup and (possible) Olympic
Confirmation Monday, June 09, 2008
Submitted by biker Adam Craig DRHS alumni -It was Oli's birthday on race day. AND, we both got double yolks in our
boiled eggs. So we pretty much figured we were going to end up sprinting for the win. Which would have been a hilarious
sprint, him weighing 140 pounds and me with a single front chainring… Somehow, though, the strength of twin chicks didn't
really come through for me… Oli responded a bit better to the immediate hike in cholesterol levels.
We flew up to Scotland from rainy Spain on Tuesday and checked into our delightful B and B under sunny skies. After
flogging the minivan for the three hour drive up into the highlands, of course. A nice week of eating delicious breakfast and
doing some quality lying around being “professional” had me pretty well rested up for race day, I thought. Oli also was
appreciating a couple days of life away from fatherhood and the ensuing ability to sleep past “half five” as well.
After two laps of racing around the strangely dusty Fort William XC track, Oli and I were hanging out in the lead group of
a dozen or so, resting up and trying to digest the yellow egginess… I decided my initial move through the group would have to
be over the “skinny” option at the start of lap 3. In order to overtake Seamus Mcgrath, who'd chosen the nancy route around
the long way, I had to sprint across the 6” wide log. This made negotiating the 90 degree turn at the junction a bit challenging.
So I decided to do it on my face. I think my look of disgust was actually milder than Seamo's who had to stop and throw my
bike out of the way… No matter, I watched Oli and the rest of the lead group ride away from my vantage point on my back in
a peat bog. Perfect. And my bars twisted on impact… Oops. Joe had a tool for me in the tech zone though (this was the first
race I've ever done with no allen keys, as I lost them last week) and I got it sorted in short order. Settling back in I found
myself in an epic battle with Jeremy H-K for our nations final virtual Olympic spot. Actually, it was more like we were
just riding together for a lap. Then he unluckily hit one of the 487,000 rocks imbedded in the course, this one in the
“Berminator” section, immediately causing his rear tire to surrender it's captive air and sealant. Well, I guess that's that then. I
settled into feeling totally average and maintaining my mid-teens position. Which I did all the way to the finish. 16th, to be
exact, for the second weekend in a row.
Oli did much better, leading the sixth place group up the climb the last lap and paring it down to four. Who all ended up
punking him in the last kilometer. 9th on the day, good thing, finishing anywhere outside the top 10 with a beard like that at his
home race on his birthday would have been unacceptable…
Overall, it was sunny and it looks like we'll both be going to the Olympics in a couple months, so we've pretty much
accomplished what we set out to do a couple years ago. It's nice to have that sorted out. Of course, anyone on the US
Olympic Long Team could get a top three at next weekend's World Championships in Val di Sole, Italy and punch their ticket,
but that's not super likely. I'd like to see it though…
In the meantime, I'm gonna take the Highlands Topo Map that our buddy and SSWC07 Organizer Marty just handed off
and go do some singletrack exploring to celebrate. Then we head to Italy on Monday to eat proper delicious PIZZA! Yes.
Thanks to everyone who's made this whole Olympic thing come together in the last couple years. Especially Tom and Elke
for the mint support in the last two months of world cuppin'…
Here’s a photo each of Oli and I roosting the same turn, courtesy of Colin Maegher (In Motion Photography). The beard
makes him look way faster, eh?