Dave's Report - August 18, 2007
Transrockies finish - Elkford to Sparwood
Friday 17th August.
The 6th and second last stage of this �amazing� race started at Elkford and ended in Sparwood. By all accounts it was long, hard, arduous, very dusty and hot. The two leading superhuman teams again crossed the finish line in an astounding 5 hours 3 minutes. That would be the United Cycle Team of Tim and Roddi, with the Costa Rican boys Federico and Ivan literally milli seconds behind. I mean we are talking 118 kilometers of heavy duty mountain biking and they fly over the finishing line with what seems like no effort. Now of course it must have been a huge effort, they just don�t make it look like it was. It�s great to see athletes of this calibre racing in our beautiful Rocky Mountains.
All 281 teams of the original 302 that started are to be absolutely congratulated. For those who have come with racing as the object, competition ranges from fierce to friendly and everything in between. For those who have come purely to challenge themselves and see if they can finish, the results don�t really do justice to the ability of these riders. The fitness level of these hundreds of cyclists is truly inspiring. Despite the heat, dust, crashes, mechanicals, muscle fatigue and exhaustion, it has been quite the experience to follow the travelling roadshow that the Transrockies has become.
The mountains surrounding Sparwood produced a very difficult day of riding. Some of the climbs seemed never ending according to those who rode it. Again the Fernie riders are holding their own, finishing strongly after 7 � 9 hours of riding. And it was great to see some of the wives and children of the Fernie boys able to be at the Sparwood finish. And there are lots of them (children that is, not wives ! ) You know its been a tough day when lying on the asphalt carpark is a welcome relief ( see photos ).
Good luck to all the Fernie riders on this last day of an epic race. You are now in your own backyard. So enjoy.