Monday 10 June 2013

Victoria Cycling Festival Weekend May 31-June 2/2013

Trekredtruck making the pace at the Bastion Square

After some cool rainy weather things warmed and brightened up well for the Victoria Cycling Festival weekendThe Trekredtruckracing Team is based in Vancouver, but almost could be considered a "local" team for this race weekend, with so many riders living in, or with ties to Victoria.

The full Team came for the weekend, complete with both Men's and Women's team managers. And both Teams performed very well, with multiple wins and men and women on the podiums in all 3 stages. Aside from the on the bike performances, the Team also enjoyed some social time including a lovely backyard BBQ hosted by the De Vos family. Just so happened that it was Alison Beveridge's 20th birthday that day and not one, but 3 cakes appeared for the occasion. Nonetheless Momma De Vos's extraordinary Peach Cobbler won 'best in class' hands down!

Apart from the Dalas Road Time Trial and the Mechosin Road Race (which also doubled as the Provincial Championships and produced a super duel win by TRT riders Adam and Megan!), it's the long running Bastion Square Criterium that for me defines the event. Like the Gastown Criterium in Vancouver, this day brings out the whole bike community and as many of those who are seeing a bike race live for the first time ever.

It's also famous for it's support of local youth racing. Before the elite mens and womens races hit the circuit it was time for the high school category races, and the annual showstopper which is the Tim Bit's Challenge. Hard to find anything so fun and cute to watch than these kids ranging from 3-8 taking on a lap of the Bastion Square circuit.

After the littlest run bikers did their sprint race it was time for the 4-5 year olds to do their one lap race. I lead the kids out through the first corner and down the straight I dropped back to about 3rd position. I was watching behind me into the 2nd corner as 2 little girls came through full speed side by side. Unfortunately one was not able to hold her line and there was a collision that resulted in the two of them on the ground, plus a young boy coming in from behind and falling over them into the mix. I stopped and got two on their bikes and underway within seconds. The one girl who got t-boned was a bit slower to get up. A police woman had rushed over and picked the sobbing little girl up and was giving her a big hug. Oh I how wished I'd have a camera in hand for that touching moment. I had the girls bike and asked her if she wanted to walk back to the finish with the policewoman. But after explaining the crash to us in amazing detail through her tears (she even knew the boy had come from behind and run over her when she was on the ground), she just wanted 'to get back on her bike to finish'. I said fine, that I would ride with her to the line. So back on and underway, she charged the rest of the course to the line passing about 12 kids along the way. What tough, gutsy and adorable pint sized package - she definitely got my vote for 'Ride of the Day'!

The TRT team was well looked after by both team managers for all the weekends festivities. So without any need for any extra hands at the criterium I enjoyed a full day first helping with leading the Tim Bits's Challenge, then onto the announcers stage to help with commentary for the elite womens race, and finally to grab my camera to take some pictures of the men's race. It was super easy to get some nice shots of the TRT Men in action as they raced very aggressively with seemingly one of them on or off the front of the field almost the entire race.

Many thanks again to the organizers, sponsors, the many volunteers from the Victoria cycling community, the riders and of course Mother Nature for another memorable Vic Cycling Fest Weekend!

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