Saturday, August 16, 2008

Downers Grove - ProAm

What a totally fun day today. I got to meet Theresa and Janann on Friday and it has been a just a great weekend since. Today Cat met us as Downer's for a pretty enjoyable day of race watching. I'm not sure better weather could be hoped for as it's just been beautiful. Sunshine, light breeze, and live racing - does a weekend get much better?

Cat, T, & Janann :-)

Today was a lot of fun walking around. We met some great riders from xXx Racing today and I hope to put up a post on them and the team. Great stories and John and Nico were absolutely great guys who were so friendly and ready to share insights on the team. They even enjoyed the good laughs we had with what exactly did the "xXx" stand for. I really hope to shed some more light on the guys and the team in the coming days. I got to help Theresa meet many of the guys she's been following including Daniel Holloway of Garmin. She met the boys from Jittery Joe's and I again got to see Amy during the race. Cycling's a small world and it's great getting to know different ones from race to race.

Chad Hartley and the Jittery Joe guys happily take a pic with T.

Nico Westlund with xXx racing and T.

We also of course stopped by the Jelly Belly Team and I have to say Thanks for boss man Danny keeping us really entertained before the guys even got to the race. The laughs were enjoyable and the story of Nic Sanderson's missed flight last night was priceless. Thankfully he made it in this morning but I have to say - next time wait and go on the plane! I had brought cookies for the team and Danny was more than happy to take them to put in the cooler for after the race. I said it during the Elk Grove race but again, these guys are great. To put up with us wanting to try to get to know them better with smiles is a lot of fun and they make it really easy to be fans.

I also got to finally meet Dan, Myriam, and adorable little Samuel Schmatz tonight as well. I'm looking forward to talking them some more tomorrow. Dan has by far been one of the friendliest riders I've followed the last couple years. I'm so happy that he is doing so well and that Samuel and Myriam are the center of his life and he's loving life not being a full-time rider now. I'm sure he misses some of it from time to time but I'd imagine little Samuel fills any of that pretty quickly. The little guy is even more adorable in person than in all the pics Dan has shared. Great family and it was really enjoyable meeting them in person. Make sure to check out
Dan's blog too with the little guy at the airport. Sorry on the bikes Dan as that just bites but I'm glad you, Myriam, and Samuel made it here safe and sound!

ProAm race start.
Sorry for the blurr but the guys were flyin'!

There was racing all afternoon and I am hoping the site puts up results to share. We watched just about every race and rang the cow bells through out. I still have the headache from that as well as those things are LOUD. They are so loud but certainly beat yelling at every lap although I think we all still have sore throats because you can't help but to want to cheer on riders.

Rock Racing took 1st and 2nd tonight with Jittery Joe's getting 3rd. Brad ended up with a flat front tire in the under 5 laps to go so no free lap - race done. :-( There was a crash on the other side of the course with just a couple laps to go that many riders got caught behind. I think the field started with over 160 riders. They were moving too!

My pics were not the greatest today partly because I just didn't take nearly as many as I usually do. Much more fun visiting and cheering on the riders than snapping pics. Tomorrow I do hope to get more pics of the race. With the National Jersey on the line it will be intense with stress levels pretty high. Christian should be there riding with Daniel. I'm looking forward to seeing him and John. John had me almost in tears laughing when I talked to him this afternoon. Always a good time!

Hopefully the race site will have results up - HERE - shortly. There was great racing by the riders today and tomorrow should be even more intense. Hope if you're in the area you come and check it out.

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