Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Russia! Day 2 and a little bit of 3

After we did our morning track session, our USA family took a road trip to the heart of Moscow, the Red Square!! This is one of the churches within the square. Lots of people were there and we stood out a lot, not sure why, I guess many Americans go to Russia because everyone was starring at us!

This was one of the sights of downtown on our way to the Red Square.

The famous church!

Everyone got hats for a very cheap price of 250 rubles, which is about $6.50 in the US, great deal!
Collin Berry with his new hat!

Janine (our swanny):

Chandler Knop with a very classy hat:

Matt Baranoski rocking not only the hat, but the oakley's as well!

Chandler walked up to a Russian girls and made their day! Then they followed us around for the rest of the time.... not follow, more like stalk. Creepy.
There is no washer/ dryer so Jackie and I had to get creative and wash out clothes in the tub, we used a massage stick to wash it around and now they are drying outside!

Matt Lipscomb got in trouble so Ben made him do 15 push ups, chest to the ground. Ouch.

Racing starts tomorrow, very exciting!! My events are not until Friday and Sunday! Can't wait! More updates to come!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Russia! Day 1

The flight was the hardest part so far of this trip, it was 10 hours and I got a sick from the dinner they gave us on the flight.... gross! I was sardined in the middle seat between 2 Russian men who spoke no English, or German. I watched the movie Arthur about 5 times because I couldn't fall asleep no matter how hard I tried, and I kept getting sick!

When we finally arrived in Moscow, we had to wait in line to go through customs. Then picked up our bags and about 15 bike boxes, everyone starred at us as we walked through the airport. The picture below shows one of the bike box towers. (Pictured: Kate, Jen, and Chloe)

This is the intersection was chaotic!! There were no stop lights, you went in whatever direction and hope no one runs into, it was very aggressive and they don't yield to pedestrians, you have to make sure no one hits you when crossing!

We went on a Charter bus to get to the hotel. It was about an hour drive to the hotel on the interstate, and it was probably the scariest driving experience ever! Once again, there are no rules, so people were speeding, dodging in and out of cars, and passing shoulder.

Here are the Russian rubles, this looks like a lot of money, but its only $116 in US dollars.

We finally made it to the track and put our bikes together! The track is HUGE!! 2 stories high and AMAZING!

Here is another shot of the track
We had lunch at the track:
-chocolate (which I am allergic to)
Here is the picture of Russian Chocolate! Can't even read it:
We made it back to our hotel and Jackie Denny and I are room mates, our hotel room is typical except the beds are twin size and they are really low to the ground and have a dip in the middle of the mattress! There was vodka in the fridge and the hotel staff put a lock on our fridge so now we can't use it!
Here is the view from our window, the skyscrapers in the background is "downtown"
Thats all for today! More to come!!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Tour Of Elk Grove Wrap Up!

The last day was a challenge! I came into the day knowing that if I did not work hard, we would not be in yellow.

I keep repeating this, but today was my best ride for the team, I guess that's a good thing! I was attentive in the beginning trying to stay at the front. No attacks were going for the first 3 laps, or so.

With 3 laps to go, I was in the back struggling to move up. I knew I needed to do one more thing before I called it a day. I was patient to move up and with a lap and a half to go, I saw the hole, and attacked! I don't remember why I attacked, I just knew I had to do one more thing. I stayed off until the last lap.

This was the finish:
1st-Leah Kirchman- Colavita
2nd-Joelle Numainville- Tibco
3rd- Kacey Manderfield

Anne finished 4th in the sprint but sadly lost the yellow jersey due to time bonuses in the finish.

Anne got 2nd overall and Robin was 4th overall!

Its been a good and hard weekend! Now I had straight to T-Town in PA for some track action to get ready for worlds!

Peace out! More for later!

Tour Of Elk Grove

We landed in Chicago on Thursday (mid-day) and went to our host house, got settled in for about 5 minutes and then we turned around to have a dinner with the sponsors. Other teams joined and it was basically an opening ceremony for the sponsors. Robin and Janel Holcomb (Colavita) were called up to be interviewed and the race began from there!! Robin and Janel went head to head, talking about who's team was better, but in a funny way!

We woke up the next morning and found out one of our teammates had to go home due to family situations. Our team of 4 shrunk to a team of 3, and I knew I had to really step up to the plate for this stage race.

It came time to race, stage 1 was a 4.5 mile flat time trial. I had one of my best races. Kurt (my director) followed behind me in the car, he was yelling to me to go "Harder", "Shift up!", and "GO Go Go!". I think that helped me a lot, I almost caught my minute man! I ended up 24th, which was my best finish in the pro women's field.

Anne won the time trial and we are preparing to defend the yellow jersey for the rest of the stages. With Colavita and Tibco, who have a full team of 8 and 7 riders, we have our work cut out for us.

Yesterday in the crit, we held on to the yellow. Even though Anne got no time bonuses yesterday, she is still in the lead by 6 seconds to Janel Holcomb.

Today is the last stage, a crit. If Anne wins the yellow jersey, it will be a huge accomplishment, a team of 3 defends the jersey against teams that have full squads!

More to come after the final stage today! Wish us luck and look for updates on Twitter, following @Kurt_Stockton

Thursday, August 4, 2011

9 Days to go!!

It's been a while since I've done my last post... too long! Well, I thought I should probably start blogging again since I have some important events coming up.

I have just come home after 2 months of racing on the road as my first year pro. There have been ups and downs to my races, but all of them ended with learning something.

I have enjoyed my week back in Charlotte, and today I leave again!

First stop is Chicago for a quick stage race and then headed to Allentown, PA to train on the track!

I am so excited to go to Russia, I can't stand it!! I leave the country August 13th and I will be coming back August 22nd.

This will be my first time out of the country, I'm ready to compete and I have a strong focus on what I want to accomplish while I am there.

Look for more updates on my blog to follow my progress!