Wednesday, January 31, 2007

still on

Parkcross Maldegem, Maldegem Belgium
Nys wins!

1. Sven Nys
2. Niels Albert (U23)
3. David Willemsens

6. Erwin Vervecken
7 Sven Vanthourenhout!

nys seeks revenge once again after worlds. i'll bet he continues to do so for the rest of the races too. he performed a similar task last year. i heard that nys is nervous around the worlds. vervecken was cool and collected riding smart and avoiding crashes. and he has proved it works for him by winning his 3rd world title and 2nd in a row.

although nys won today and will probably dominate for the remainder of the season i still cannot get the images of the worlds race out of my head. the image of vervecken winning on the last pavement stretch was pretty dramatic. seeing Page throw down for like 4 laps forcing vervecken and franzoi to chase. the drama of wellens and nys crashing. seeing gerben de knegt crash on lap 2. watching my favorite cyclo-crosser sven vanthourenhout just pedal his ass off through what could be considered the most technical challenges any small time american would see. seeing people i had just watched dominate north american cross, trebon, wicks, tonkin, schouten ride with the best in the world. seeing the women tear up a course that i would only have a thread of a chance to ride as good as them. and the U23. wow. just amazing. but the vision of the the big pros really hit me these past few days. i didn't think it would be that cool. i can now say that i've seen the MTB worlds, the road worlds and now the cyco-cross worlds. after seeing your favorite riders in person and in action like that you have a new appreciation for how they have dedcated their lives to the sport. and seeing the people i've only seen in photos that were in action right in front of me also gave me a couple new favorites. vanthourenhout is still my favorite pro crosser. i really liked vervecken prior to my trip but now he is ranked for sure as one of my favorite to watch and learn about. not just because he has won the worlds again but they way he rode and how he carries himself as a professional. very cool.

i don't even know who this is, but it was the U23 race. this was actually a pretty tame mud section compared to other sections of the course. when the leaders came through it was like they were riding pavement. unreal.

i was a total amature when i arrived the first day. everyone was wearing tall rubber boots. rookie! the mud was so deep all over the course my feet were trashed by the end. i need to get some boots.

and that eve after the big race, i stepped off the train in brugge to find my colorado bro's. we hooked up that night for the best damn beer in the world. it never tasted so good. TONY T you need to start drinking beer!

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

too many fotos

Monday, January 29, 2007

that quick and its over

walking into history in the beautiful city of Brugge.

my only good action shot of the pros. i guess i need a quick class on how to use a camera properly. got this nice shot of wellens though. they were literaly inches from my nose. and last night on the train north, it hit me, watching page throw down at the front, i seriously thought he was going to win. i just couldn't beleive what was unfolding.

i feel like i just got here yesterday. i'm in the airport in amsterdam waiting to jump over to frankfurt germany. i rode the train last night for about 4 1/2 hours all the way from brugge back to amsterdam centraal. it wasn't too bad. i met a friend and he let me stay in his room until early this morn i had to grab a bus over to the airport. i'm kinda sad to be leaving but i think everything was just perfect. once more quick stop before i sleep for a while with old movies.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

HOLE.....LEE ...... SHIT!


Saturday, January 27, 2007


i have so much to type. i have no breath for what i have seen. 2 days in Brussels and i haven't had 1 chance to post. internet was not good here anyways. i'm off to the first days of racing and the first time i've seen or talked about cycling since i've been here. tonight when i get back i'll be able to flow my thoughts. i need to. my therapist says typing in a journal is healthy.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Een ubelievable plaats zal bezoeken

so this evening after i got back to my hotel after a long day of exploring i ventured back out on a recommendation from the front desk. i've seen 3 different women working down there since i first arrived. all have been cute. sorry no pics of them. just pics of the lobby. so because i've been walking all day she recommends a nice little italian restaurant just down the street. perfect. so i head out. on my way around the corner, i see some policeman talking to a cyclist. i cross the street and see a couple more. one is talking to another cyclist. well it looks like these guys had a little sting operation going on. kinda like when we see a handful of cop cars near an intersection in a busy college town. well these guys wern't pulling over drivers for not having seat belts or faliure to yeild, no they were busting these cyclists for not having lights. yea thats what i'm talking about. i remember in madison wisconsin people told me it was the law there (and i'm sure in every city) that you must have headlights on your bike to ride at night. well i got kind of confused with my directions so i asked one of the dutch policman for directions. nice fellow. i found my way. the problem now is that my ham strings and calf muscles are pretty tight from todays exploring. it was a brisk night and it was nice to get into the cozy restaurant. i had some soup and mostocholi. wow even in dutch the italian was good. the waitress was awesome and didn't flinch a bit knowing that i only spoke english. even though you don't have to tip here i slid here a few extra anyways. i think most un cultured americans might have a hard time with how the restaurants work here. they purposly don't bring meals until well after you have ordered. the expereince is for conversation and they don't care about turning 80 tables in one night. its the expereince and time with your dinner partner (which i had none) that they want you to enjoy. i mean my dinner for one lasted about 1 1/2 hours. who cares. chill and enjoy. of course i took in everything around me with great pleasure. two very cute girls sitting accross from me. i think i'm starting to like the taller slender light hair features of the dutch girls.
so i'm hoping that my entry into belgium is as easy as it was here. i mean finding my way to the hotel quickly and easily. should be fine. thanks to my good pal dan c who provided me with exceptional advice on my new camera purchase, he also recommened that rather than buying a DVD to watch in my computer and wearing the battery down faster, i should just download a movie from i tunes. well that worked awesome. for the plane or the train that should pass the time. although riding in the train is exciting enough watching out the window. its bad but i keep comparing this land to italy because thats the only other place i've been in centeral europe. the netherlands has many similarities but certainly is different and is set apart from the others. one thing i have noticed that is similar is how people are so non judmental here. know one cares. you can be yourself. each person is so defining in their own way. it seems like in the states you do one thing to define yourself and set yourself apart and people are so quick to judge and make comments. people here just simply don't care. it sure is nice. yea i should have puchased a one way ticket. i had a waffle today. it wasn't a belgiun waffle of course but it was damn good. i'll have another before i leave i'm sure. so i'm becoming an expert on hearing the differences between languages. i've always liked hearing it i just never put aside the time to learn it. i really want to. i can easily tell french, italian, and dutch/flemish. now i can't tell the difference between dutch and flemish but i know they are very similar. being surrounded by it makes it so easy to pick up words and learn it. i spent 10 days in italy and didn't speak a lick. by the last day i was ordering food and buying train tickets. one thing i try to do is not look like a freak'n tourist. damn you can pick those dumb asses out 3 blocks away. i must be doing something right because i got asked directions twice today. glad i got the look down. i just need to work on the talking part.
another thing i really like about central europe is they way the cities are layed out. tiny little streets with all kinds of shops and cafes and things everywhere. plenty of head shops too. yes you can buy and smoke pot all you want here. its legal. i had an esspresso today in one. but no i didn't smoke i just smelled. it was nice. peoples homes are all intertwined. it seems like when a new business or large complex is looking to open they look to existing built areas to modify or dress up. rather people in the states find huge sprawling chunks of land and build million dollar shopping malls and condo complexes. these streets with shopping are so dense it makes for the most unbelievable atmosphere. and of course adds to the value of the city instead of looking to the farm land on the outskirts. i guess its just our way. like our football. like our meca gas station convenience stores packed with every snack imanginable for the family car ride. no american would fit in these nice easy to park cars. i swear i have not seen one obese person since i've been here. there is one reason the dutch produce some of the best cyclists in the world. they go from crawling to cycling. they skip walking. i watched these people very carfuly today as they rode by me. as they rode by me so pleasently in their very own perfectly paved bike lane with traffic signals and street signs. its cold out. the climate here is the same as in michigan. yes they have cars here. italians have scooters. yes there are scooters here too, but by far 8 out of 10 people here are riding bikes. its really cool. they are pedaling along, navigating through the narrow streets, people, trains and cars. they get good at it. no wonder the likes of old man groenendaal and de knegt come from this region. they probably grew up weaving their way in and out of these obsticals only to prepar themselves for the world of pro cyclo-cross. well i don't even know what day it is. i just know that tomorrow i'm checking out of this hotel and leaving the netherlands and heading south to brussels. a bit sad to be leaving here but i'll be back sunday night.


my spring training officially started today. lots of walking. it feels good. i probably walked close to 15 miles today. my hotel is about 15 or 20 min walk from the red light disctrict.

an evening view of my hotel.

i'm on the 3rd floor. walking up and down these super steep stairs is a great way to get the legs moving in the morning.

the graffiti is just amazing here. its totally art. its actually very clean and known through the city as a spektical to be viewed as art not a dirty gang thing.

these canals are awesome. they break up the city and are good markers to find your way. i actually walked all the way back to the amsterdam central station today.

oh yea, plenty of chocolate stores to get you thinking about sweet things. i have a problem in that department.

its awesome to walk through miles of little streets then turn into a tiny coradoor stuffed with shops and people everywhere. then you pop out into these huge piazzas.

beautiful brick streets. the temps were actually very nice today. about 40 degrees or so.

so awesome.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007


i've arrived. after the 8 1/2 hour flight i found my resting place for a bit.

so i had an amazing flight. smooth as silk. tristan got lucky like me, and sometimes on a long flight (especially mondays) you just might get an entire row to yourself. well that happened to me. it sure is nice to have the extra space in coach.

so we landed and i swooped through customs like a day at starbucks. they didn't even ask me one question. frankfurt germany or mexico is like totally scary when you answer to armed gaurds. wow i was through in seconds looking for my train ticket. another note, dutch trains are much nicer than italian trains. not to knock the italian rail or anything but damn they have it going on over here. again, another model for perfect public transportation. i zoomed to the amsterdam centeral station from the airport and found a taxi. he was awesome. right to the hotel. i forgot that when i visit europe i need to remember that everything is small. i love it. small roads, small bills, small hallways and of course small hotel rooms. this hotel kicks total ass. the hotel V. the chick that checked me in was totally hot and so helpful. i'll have to take a pic of her later when i wake up. the decor is awesome. its 5:30a.m. here right now and i checked in no problem. candles lit all over the tiny little lobby. so cool. i'm going to bed now. pretty tired. can't wait to get rest and venture out with the camera to see the land. i'm very happy to be here.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

world cup #11

Hoogerheide Netherlands
Nys wins!

1. Sven Nys
2. Petr Dlask
3. Erwin Vervecken

9. Jonathan Page
10. Ryan Trebon
25. Erik Tonkin
29. Tristan Schouten

DNF Richard Groenendaal
DNF Bart Wellens
DNF Sven Vanthourenhout
DNF Gerben De Knegt
DNF Barry Wicks
DNF Davide Frattini

Lars Boom and Neils Albert were 1 & 2 in U 23.

Saturday, January 20, 2007


this shit gives me goose bumps. there is so much power and drama behind these types of clips. it just gets me going. i'll be living this epic experience in one week.

Wereldkampioenschap Cyclo-cross 2007 - 27 & 28 januari -

1 week until the war begins.

all yellow

Zonnebeke Belgium
Vanthourenhout wins!

oh yeah, my boy Sven Vanthourenhout wins this morning. 2 sunweb pro job on the podium and the italian scores a 2nd place.

1. Sven Vanthourent!
2. Enrico Franzoi
3. David Willemsens
5. Johnathan Page
14. Ryan Trebon

a week away and vanthourenhout scores a confidence builder. with the exception of last year, sven is known for performing well at world championship races. he has been 3rd twice in the mens elite and was world champ as an espoir. next sunday will be awesome!


Thursday, January 18, 2007

de thaw

i hope i see some belgium podium girls.

still haven't baught my camera yet. maybe tomorrow.

just uploaded 2 new discs to the ipod for the trip. oakenfold rules.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

perma gloom over

2007 World Championships

well its less than 2 weeks until the biggest cross race and i'm clear for take off. i'm going to the worlds and i'm pretty excited about it. i've waited a long time for this and i'm going to live it up full on. there is no way i'm making any predictions about the top picks either. and that is because after watching the way this season has unfolded, too many things can happen in a big race like this. i'm sure all the heavy hitters will have the odds but rather than name drop i will go watch it unfold with my own eyes. i've also decided to take my computer. i had originally planned on not taking it but after some thought i think it will be ok.

reading some posts from american and belgium based christine vadaros, it sounds like its going to be a post card moment course with plenty of belgiun mud on hand. it may even snow.

i think no matter what happens from here out and even after the race, every event for the rest of the year will be like this photo in Sven Nys's mind. Wellens lingering in the shadows.

so this friday will be a full 3 weeks i've spent without my beloved volkswagen. its the first problem i've ever had in 5 years. a small part and a stupid part. its still drivable but i can't defrost my windows. actually when i turn on the defrost it fogs up. pretty stupid. problem is the part lies behind my dash board and the dealership has to special order the part in from germany. so until the fucking thing gets here i have to drive this pile. over the past 2 weeks i found out why GM is going out of business. because they manufacturer cars like this. oh my. this thing sucks. chevy colbalt. i highly advise that knowone every spend hard earned money on transportation like this. take a bus, ride your damn bike or walk. unfortunately my career choice does not allow me such decisions in my daily grind.

in the eve when i get home its dark. i open the door to retreive my belongings. no light comes on to aid. i pull down the visor to pick things out of my teeth, no mirror. i go into kick back mode while driving, no arm rest. i guess for some this car would be a luxury and i must be spoiled with my german engeneering that has so conveinently put me out huge $ and into this american thing. oh well, the dealership has offered to pick up the tab with the rental and maybe when i get back from my trip it will be done.

today was the first day in what seems like years we had sunshine. wow does that make a big difference for me. i'm really having problems lately adapting to these winter months. dictionary def of cold nagging no sun depressing winters between october and march = southeast michigan. killing me. colorado has awesome snow for the resorts. big teams are in the southern states training with warm air in their faces. cross is going strong in belgium (belgiuns don't give a fuck about weather, they go out no matter what) very few die hard michganders will brave the cold months for fitness outdoors. i try to. i just don't want to try that hard. i want it to be easy motivation. i went for a run on sunday. ran the steps inside michigan stadium. i'm paying the price now. pain. rode the trainer for an hour today. sucks. i think its time to take a trip to the good land, eat some waffles and chocolate, drink some esspresso and hit the reset button.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

world cup # 10

Nommay France
Nys wins!

1. Sven Nys
2. Bart Wellens
3. Gerben De Knegt
4. Richard Groenendaal
5. Petr Dlask
6. John Gadret
7. Erwin Vervecken
12. Sven Vanthourenhout!
15. Johnathan Page

Saturday, January 13, 2007

a day closer

Grand Prix Lille Metropole Roubaix
Gerben De Knegt wins!

1. Gerben De Knegt
2. Erwin Vervecken
3. John Gadret
6. Johnathan Page

Ben Berden busted for EPO 3 years ago is back racing. got 15th today.

Gerben so gracfuly wore the Dutch national jersey all year. no more. he'll be back in his trade team kit for the next year. Lars Boom is the new proud owner now. i guess de knegt doesn't need it to win since he won a bad ass race in france this morning.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

2nd Scheldecross

Antwerpen Belgium
Albert wins!

the youngster out smarts them again! Niels albert takes his second elite win beating out world champ vervecken and stybar. i'm starting to think at his age he could be the next dominating force for the future of belgiun cross stars.

1. Niels Albert
2. Erwin Vervecken
3. Zdenek Stybar
4. Petr Dlask
5. Bart Wellens

the guys is only 20 years old! he still has 3 more years as an espoir. watch that name.

thats a funny podium with vervecken standing under the youngster. very cool though.

huge news announced also about tristan making the worlds team. so cool. its going to be a great adventure. if anyone reads this please make it over to tristans blog to support the future of cross for up and coming north americans traveling abroad to experience this once in a life time opportunity. this is a dream for anyone that has a focus in a cycling career. congratulations tristan.

Monday, January 08, 2007

the day after

GP Jozef Defoor
Otegem Belgium Nys wins!

1. Sven Nys
2. Sven Vanthourenhout!
3. Jan Verstraeten
10. Jonthan Page

Nys seaks revenge from Belgium nationals

the new national champ showing his new colors proud in Otegem.

Bart tackles the run up this morn.

Nys chases still wearing the UCI world cup leaders kit.

belgiun mud ankle deep. makes for tough running i'm sure.

may fav - sven vanthourenhout riding as the leader for the new sun web pro job team. 2nd today!

Page rocking the barriers. looking good and on track for worlds.

world champ vervecken keeping it real at the front.

Belgium champ - Bart Wellens
1. Bart Wellens
2. Klaas Vantornout
3. Sven Nys
loving the Fidea/belgiun kit.

Dutch champ - Lars Boom
1. Lars Boom
2. Richard Groenendaal
3. Gerben De Knegt
21 year old beats the vets!

French champ - Francis Mourey
1. Francis Mourey
2. John Gadret
3. Jerome Chevallier
go mourey

Italian champ - Enrico Franzoi
1. Enrico Franzoi
2. Marco Aurelio Fontana
3. Marco Bianco
would it be anyone else?

Czech champ - Petr Dlask
1. Petr Dlask
2. Zdenek Stybar
3. Radomir Simunek
tall boy returns!

German champ - Rene Birkenfeld
1. Rene Birkenfeld
2. Johannes Sickmuller
3. Thorsten Struch

Austrian champ - Peter Presslauer
1. Peter Presslauer
2. Roland Morx
3. Gerald Hauer

Danish champ - Joachim Parbo
1. Joachim Parbo
2. Tommy Moberg
3. Christian Poulsen

British champ - Philip Dixon
1. Philip Dixon
2. Nick Craig
3. Rob Jebb
another X0-1 wins British nationals!

Irish champ - Robin Seymour
1. Robin Seymour
2. Roger Aiken
3. Lewis Ferguson

Luxembourg champ - Gusty Bausch
1. Gusty Bausch
2. Pascal Triebel
3. Jempy Drucker
Gusts his way to a win.

Polish chmap - Marek Cichosz
1. Marek Cichosz
2. Dariusz Gil
3. Mariusz Gil

Slovakian champ - Maros Kovac
1. Moros Kovac
2. Milan Barenyi
3. Robert Glajza
maros taken it

Swiss champ - Christian Heule
1. Christan Heule
2. Simon Zahner
3. Florian Vogel
frishy got 4th. Moos DNF

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