Excitement had been building for weeks amongst our group to go and race in Gatineau, Quebec at the infamous Gatineau Grand Prix. La Petite Maison Juane would be our house for the next four days. It was cozy, and to add some excitement we realized that the upstairs wasn't quite level. The doors would swing on their hinges open if they weren’t shut properly. Also another clue was that everything rolled down towards the back wall. We all had a good laugh about it. Once bikes were built we all headed out on a spin. Flushing the legs in one way or another helps to open the legs before a big race. For many of us this is the biggest race we’ve competed at during our racing careers. Being a UCI 1.1 race means potential for getting points, which would allow us to participate in future UCI events with better placings in TT and TTT lineups, as well as with more spots if the opportunity presents.
The course through Gatineau park was be challenging, consisting of two laps of the park followed by 5 laps of a circuit just outside the park. In previous years the race was never determined in the park, but when things heated up in the circuit. Many teams were saved their protected riders for the sprint at the end. This year went a little differently, Attacks from bigger teams put pressure on each other in the park, and divided the group dramatically on the first lap. The Red truck women however were not phased by this, making the chase to set Callie up for a top 17 finish. This secured Callie 5 UCI points as only the top 18 were awarded five.
It was a wonderful experience to have been able to line up with not only some of North America’s strongest women but also a prominent showing of some of the top international riders as well. Having had a taste for this caliber of racing we are now eager to come back next year and continue to grow as bike racers. Thank you to everyone who made this trip possible, and a special shout out to Brian Green for spear heading the trip.