I learned something important tonight. Road racing is NOT complicated. You roll a few kays to your local crit. You bring your bike. Don’t forget your license. Warm up. Then go.
I spend 40 minutes watching all the racers wondering why the heck I wasn’t racing myself. I think the short answer is it’s easier to psych out and go safe. But honestly the way that everyone rode tonight was super organized, not at all chippy and crappy like some road races I could mention.
You also learn stuff just by turning up. I didn’t know what Men’s Madison was until tonight. Or who Martin Gilbert is. But this shows you what goes on in Montreal – here’s a low-key neighbourhood hosting a bike race with an Olympic athlete toeing the line (Gilbert) all the way through the Silber guys and the regular ole’ racers.
There’s all kinds of age groups too, the little ‘uns look really little when you see them off their bikes. Tropical punch guys. Great to see you all out there giving it heck.
The race is set up the way I like a race set up. AC/DC rocking loud, hot dogs for sale and full sit down dining with wine glasses and table clothes at the VIP booth. What more could you ask for?
It’s fun to watch the laps, think about the effort they are all putting in, as I loaf on the side of the track. Starts to sound like a beatnik poem, but there it is. I watched for about 20 minutes, then decided to go ride a couple of sprints myself.
I arrived home suitably stinky and satisfied with a couple hours well spent.
Congrats to the Martin Swiss riders (I counted three) who went out to play. Look forward to hearing your tales sometime soon, so I can add it to the race report!