Repeating as Canadian Champion required some hard sweat equity as mother nature added some new challenges to last year’s course around Buntzen Lake in Port Moody, BC, just outside of Vancouver. In addition, the Xterra Canada crew changed the run, making it much longer and much more hilly, and some really cold water to swim in made this race the perfect last race as I prepare for the US Championships at Lake Tahoe in 2 weeks… I had such a fun time with Scott and Stephanie Booth’s awesome family. Josiah, Drew and I had a great time playing with Mitchell and Taylor, and the post race hot tub kicked ass. We were in the winningest homestay this year, claiming both top spots on the podium in the race, and Mitchell defeated Drew on the fooseball table so we had a third champion. What is funny though, is that I have never met these great people, and it turns out Scott’s father, "Mr Booth", was my math teacher in high school, and had remembered my name. I am not sure whether that is a good or bad thing!
So some highlights and lowlights from the race. A highlight was prerace pizza with dad who was regaling me with tales from the Burning Man festival, which he attended with his buddy Dwayne last week. OK, my dad is 54, and in no hurry to stop adventuring. I saw him off to Newfoundland where he is going to check out the Targa, a sports car rally he plans to race in next year. Now you all must know, we McQuaids are a little off!
In the race…. BAD swim… choked on water and stopped while panicking, so not what I had planned at that point. Lots of chasing to get back in the race. Lots of slippy sections on the course but it is SO great to have such fun singletrack in a race. Rode the Maxxis Larsons to see how they would perform in the wet and they were great. I like riding steep ups and down and powering in between and the traction was great. It was really challenging to ride cleanly this year. I had a new shoe too… the Shimano TR01, somewhat modified from stock class, is going to be the dope shit for the last two races of the season. The run felt good, but I am terrible on technical downhills, and had to pick my way down some sections which made me very slow. No spraining ankles for me. Up was good, down was bad for once but I had some decent traction in the Fastwitch shoe so I think I have clear winners on my equipment for the last season races. Nothing can compare to the extreme condition of this wicked course, so I am set. I rode the K2 Razorback T-Nine on this course, which is a good choice for bumpy stuff. I was pretty knackered from lots of training over the last three weeks, but a Compex session and sleep in the butterfly bed (thanks Taylor) and I was good to go.
So a very fun event, and anyone who has been to Vancouver knows just how spectacular this area is. It was beautiful. What was also great is there is a new Kabush in town and she is going to rip it up at Xterra. Danelle was second, with not a lot of training, and kicked my butt on the run. She, like her famous brother Geoff (Maxxis Pro NORBA Champ guy), is fast, and will just get faster.
I am off to Denver to train with my friends Tim and Michelle, and will be ready for Tahoe this season. Did a new photoshoot for Interbike, new photos the boys might like in the album…
Thanks to my coach Houshang Amiri at Pacificsport National Cycling Center. I would like to thank my sponsors Saucony USA, K2 Bicycles, Compex Technologies, Ford Cycling, Sundog Eyewear, Maxxis, Powerbar, Shimano, Giro, 661, Descente, Hypoxico, Arq, Deuter, Rider’s Cycles and Pacificsport.