I spent this past weekend in North Vancouver riding with some of the Cycling BC Coaches as part of the selection process for the up-coming Junior Road Nationals from June 24-28th in Ottawa, Ontario.

We started off the weekend at 10am in front of Richard Wooles’ house, Director of the Cycling BC Provincial Road Team. Wes Ochitwa, Jeff Ain and Richard Wooles lead Saturday’s ride. We headed towards Mount Seymour and this is where we would have our first test. A short 2km hill climb. This helped the coaches determine the strength of the riders, but also gave us an opportunity to practice riding under some stress. Nerves before an event are good, but its important to learn to deal with them in a positive manner. We continued through the Demo forest. We used this forest to avoid busy roads but also to give any of the eager riders a place to push the envelope a little on another effort.

We finished up the morning and went back to Richard’s house for some lunch and a bit of rest before we were back on the road for a short TT, part way up Cypress Mountain. It took us about an hour of riding through neighborhoods to get to our starting spot. We peeled our layers on the side of the road. Vests, arm and leg warmers were shelled. Gels and bottles ditched in the gravel. One by one we were sent off down the mountain only to be turned around after about 1.5km by Richard, who was watching out for cars zipping past on the other side. We turned around and headed straight back up. The test only took between 5 and 6min. I felt strong and ready to drill it.

Day two was a group ride, our goal to head towards Horseshoe Bay. At the beginning of the ride, the girls and the boys were split up to practice some pace lines. We did an effort out to the turning circle before descending down into the village. We then regrouped with the guys, and headed back for another effort, again in front of the guys. Eventually getting passed by them. We regrouped in front of Cycling BC’s title sponsors’ house, Haywood Security, where a group photo was taken. Then back to Richard’s house after a solid ride.

What a great weekend to ride with some future teammates and friends. There is some superb talent coming through the ranks. I am eager to ride alongside (or against) these women at Nationals and in future competitions.