Monday, September 9, 2013


As I mentioned in my last post I qualified and accepted a spot to "Race Across the Sky" at the Leadville Trail 100 MTB race last year at the Tahoe Trail 100.  This would be by far the longest my ass had ever spent on a bike saddle and to say that I was just a little bit nervous about the whole thing would be an understatement.  Thankfully I had a good crew here in Tucson sharing in the whole experience to train and bounce ideas off of and even better my coach Jimmy Riccitello had done the race himself in 2011.  (and yes I did kick his butt!!!) Paul Thomas introduced me to the secret Leadville training grounds, otherwise know as the backside of Kitt Peak and more than a few days A WEEK were spent climbing Mt Lemmon.  I was really set on approaching the race with no expectations but had in the back of my mind set out two goals of getting under the 9hrs mark for the "big buckle" and finishing top 10 overall for the women.  

Backside of Kitt Peak
For those of you not familiar with the race here are the stats :0-  
  • 100 mile out and back course (which actually means 103.3miles)
  • Starting Elevation 10,152 FT, Low Point 9,200FT, High Point 12,424FT (ouch!!)
  • 12,612FT of Elevation Gain (hey, why not)
  • Over 1,500 people on the start line - 1,375 Finishers

Extra long training days in Tucson in the middle of summer also posed a bit of a problem, and some serious suffering.  My big training block heading into the race consisted of 3 mid-week rides (3,4, and 5hrs) then two big ones on the weekend, with a couple of short swim and runs thrown in just for good measure!! The solution to the heat issue was to get in a couple of hours around town then start climbing up the Mountain hopefully before you melted.  Sunday was reserved for Kitt Peak reps (one road, one dirt, one road).  There were a couple of days when I physically couldn't digest enough fluid to keep me hydrated, my last long ride ended with me spending the next 14hrs in bed.  But overall I truly enjoyed the training and best of all my body responded really well to it.  I felt stronger and stronger every week and did my last long session on Kitt Peak 2 weeks out knowing I had done everything I could to be ready to race. 

Winter Park 
Exactly one week out I packed up the little Echo and headed UP.  Shelby Katz saved the day and offered her condo in Winter Park, CO to be my training base for the week so I could get used to the altitude as best as possible.  For me day 3 and 4 at altitude are death days and having put so much time and effort into training I didn't want to throw it away race day feeling like complete crap.  Winter Park was perfect with a elevation just above 9,000ft, lots of awesome singletrack and close enough to Leadville to get in a couple of pre-rides during the week.  Having ridden the climb up Columbine a couple of years ago with the infamous Mr. and Mrs. Smith, yes I actually blame Jenny for planting the seed that eventually lead to me racing Leadville, I didn't feel the need to do it again.  (Jenny did redeem herself by providing amazing insider prep information and race day sherpa services;)  Thanks Jenny!!) I split up the rest of the course in half and enjoyed two pretty magical solo days out on my bike, soaking up the spectacular views.  

Turquoise Lake from the start of the Sugarloaf Climb
Looking back over Twin Lakes
Twin Lakes looking up at the Columbine Climb
The weather all week was dramatic and stormy with dry mornings and scattered afternoon rains.  The result was perfect conditions!! The rest of the T-Town crew rolled into town Wednesday and Thursday and soon enough it was Friday and we were all nervously going over our gear, nutrition strategies, and feed bags.  It just wouldn't be a race weekend without something going wrong and thus a huge shout out and thank you to Absolute Bikes in town from Salida who spent a couple of hours Friday morning fixing a loose cassette and bent derailleur hanger!!

Race morning was an early one with a 6:30 start time.  George Varhola and I were both in the Silver Corral and headed over to the start just after 5:00am to get well positioned.  I was feeling good, a bit nervous but still relaxed.  The start ended up being so mellow I had to laugh at all the pre-race anxiety I had over the roll-out.   Everyone was super chill and gave each other plenty of space, I love mountain bikers.  I held my position and used the riders around me to control my pace even though my legs were jumping to go faster!!

George and I on the start line
The one and only PT leading the charge
Up St Kevin's nice and easy and happy to see the field start to spread out.  Dropped out onto the road and enjoyed the fast paved descent to Turquoise lake.  Started the climb up Sugarloaf and started to pick people off, a little nervous about the Powerline descent but overall still feeling great.  At the top of Powerline I was delighted to have found my own little space of trail.  I couple of guys came flying past me but overall I got to ride it smooth and controlled, big smile.  Back onto a paved road I quickly sprinted up to the peloton forming just ahead of me and enjoyed a super fast draft into the Pipeline Aid Station at just under 2hrs, right on plan.  Into the aid station I was happy to quickly find Jenny at the Stan's NoTubes tent.  Even happier to have her look at me with a surprised smile and say "I think you are in 3rd???" I replied I'm feeling great, switched out my bottles, grabbed my nutrition and headed out onto the Pipeline.  I didn't quite believe I was in 3rd, but figured I wasn't too far off, maybe 4th or 5th!!  I caught up with sometimes Xterra racer Jari Kirkland just before Twin Lakes and after a bit of a cluster at the aid station started the long climb up Columbine.  I remember thinking to myself quite happily, 3hrs done - only 5hrs or so yet to go, then promptly realized I had officially transitioned over to the darkside.  I mean seriously, who gets all happy and smiley thinking about ONLY having over 5hrs to go!!! 

The magic continued up the climb, the legs were effortlessly ticking over.  I was flying past everyone, just picking them off one at a time.  The right hand turn up onto the goat trail and the legs were still powering away, breathing was controlled and HR was staying steady right below threshold.  I was carefully maneuvering around guys off their bikes walking determined to ride mine all the way when the stomach wrenching sound of my chain snapping in half stopped me in my tracks.  No F-ing way, not here, not now, unbelievable!! The ensuing 10 minutes of me frantically fixing my chain (thankfully I always ride with a masterlink and chain-breaker) were the longest of my life.  I watched 3 girls catch and pass me before I finally got my chain back on.  Tunnel vision, now I was pissed and full of adrenaline and ready to throw down, everyone out of my way.  I have to admit I was "just a little" aggro with everyone walking and literally rode ride up the middle of the goat trail elbowing people out of the way when I needed to clear the trail for a downhill rider.  Sorry...but only just a little, you were all walking ;)

Around the turn at the Columbine mine shaft in 4:25, no problem, half way done and ready to pull out a huge negative split.  I caught 2 of the girls right at the top and headed down hoping I could catch back up to Jari.  Quickly through the Twin Lakes Aid Station I settled back into my pace across the Pipeline, glad to have a couple of guys to ride with, trying not to think of the looming Powerline climb.  

Twin Lakes Aid Station - homebound!!

Into the last aid station and happy to hear that Jari was only a little ways ahead.  Jenny warned me that the last section was going to be longer than I thought and insisted on stuffing some more cliff blocks into my pockets.  I was now carrying no less than four partially eaten packs!! Powerline, the climb everyone dreads no matter how good you are feeling.  I gave it everything I could to stay on my bike but eventually had to jump off and start pushing my bike.  Yep, it sucked, but it was over pretty quickly and I was back up riding. The thing about the Powerline climb is there are many false summits.  I one point, thinking we were at the top, I let out a big Woohoo.  Strangely no one around me shared in the excitement ;) Hmm oops.

Powerline :0
Up and over the climb, fast descent back to Turquoise Lake then up the last long climb, St Kevin's.  Funny, the descent 7hrs earlier seemed a whole lot shorter.  Down the last descent and I was completely surprised to have Jari roll up behind me?? Tummy issues had plagued her all day and it seems she had had to make a bit of a trail side pit stop :(  Only a couple of miles to go I put my head down and gave everything I had left. 4th overall in 8:22:08!!  BIG BUCKLE :))

Yes, I put it on :)
In over 20yrs of racing at the elite level I can count on less than one hand what some people might call "Magic Days".  I not sure I really even believe in them, but Leadville 2013, whatever I want to call it, was certainly one of my best days ever!!  Will I be back in 2014?  Not sure.  I believe that I can go a whole lot faster, but part of me wonders whether I should just let it be and always remember the race as the magical experience it was.  Time will tell I suppose :)

Thanks for reading,

Thursday, August 22, 2013

To Blog or Not To Blog...

Well, it seems not to blog has been the unfortunate reality.  I have officially deemed 2013 to be a rebuilding year and take the results such as they are in that context.  Also a year to try some different events, which have proven to be much more exciting and therefore successful than I imagined.  Having finally recovered (a week and a half later) from the freight train running me over that was Leadville Trail 100 MTB, I thought I would catch up on the old blog.  I had a terrific race in Leadville (4th Women) and would much rather write about that experience but as I am first and foremost OCD, I will in the briefest of forms, ie mostly pictures, run through the last couple of races.

May... Xterra Alabama & BE Beast of the Southeast (Nashville)

Alabama is always a fun time with the whole gang converging on JR's place in Hoover.  After the Xterra Vegas incident, I was hesitant in my expectations and just wanted to get a solid race in.  I also remembered to bring my wetsuit so wasn't caught out in that bizarre situation.  Good swim, solid bike, ok first 5km run, held on for 8th.  But I did finish the run actually running so forward progression....Good.

Always fun Oak Mountain trails
From Alabama it was a group caravan over to Nashville TN for the inaugural Breakthrough Endurance BEast of the Southeast race weekend, and more wet muddy trails, yeah!! (I live in Tucson = no mud, ever)  Craig Evans and company put on a stellar, action packed weekend in which I raced the Super-Sprint Off-Road Tri Friday afternoon (3rd), Olympic Distance Off-Road Tri Saturday morning (4th), Short Track MTB Saturday afternoon (3rd) and Sprint Road Tri Sunday morning (1st).  I would not recommend this much racing in one weekend, the body definitely took a beating, but it was fun.  

BigFish super fast neoprene skin ;)
Tennessee - Hot & Humid

June... Xterra Richmond

Duathlon, need I say anymore.  There really wasn't an alternative as the James river was truly un-swimmable but really duathlons and I don't tend to get along.  I did make up for it and go for swim with my bike halfway through the second lap of the bike (see bike course photo below) and managed to pull out a 7th.  Best result of the Xterra series for me, go figure.

Yes, the water is part of the BIKE course!!

July... Cedar City Fireroad 100

 Last year while coming back from shoulder surgery and thus not doing much swimming or triathlons I headed up to Tahoe to race the Trans-Tahoe Swim Relay (ok a little swimming) with my sister and the Tahoe Trail 100 MTB race.  In my post-race stupor I reached out and grabbed the Leadville 100 gold coin.  No worries, I'll take the spot for 2013, it'll be fun!! So after Xterra Richmond I decided that August 10th was really quickly approaching and just maybe I had better start thinking about the fact that I was going to race 100miles, with 12,600ft of climbing, almost all of which about 10,000ft.  It'll be FUN!! To kick start the shift in focus I jumped in the car with the Tucson gang of George Varhola, Kathryn Bertine and Marilyn McDonald, and headed over to Cedar City Utah for the Fireroad 100 (km) race.  Only 7,000+ ft of climbing in this little warm-up race!!  I truly suffered way more that I expected and along with just about everyone else I spoke with after the race wondered what the hell I had gotten myself into.  The race itself was great and lots of fun and even ended up being a pretty good payday!!  As yes, a good kick in the butt to get serious about getting in Leadville shape:)

Rolling Out
Spectacular Utah Scenery (and suffering)
Next post... Leadville :))

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Catching Up...

I never know how to start a blog post when I've left it so long without an update.  I really should make a habit of keeping it up to date, even when life isn't what you think or hope it should be.  Good thing is, it always seems to work itself out for the most part, or at least carry on.  Since it has been so long I will do a quick recap from where we left off, 24hrs in the Old Pueblo...


March went by in a bit of a whirlwind.  I spend most of the time on a work project for the Tucson Botanical Gardens called "Growdown".  Essentially four Tuscon Landscape Architect/Designers were selected and  tasked with designing a 15'x20' garden and building it in 24hrs, pretty much speed gardening.  It was a really fun, but amazingly exhausting experience and after three eight hour days out in the sun doing construction I was beat.  I narrowly missed winning the competition (one vote) but was super happy with how my garden turned out.  If you are in the Tucson area and interested, the gardens will be up for just a couple more weeks before they get dismantled.  A full write up about the event with lots of before/during/after photos is on our company website.

Giving the plants a little TLC
Finished Garden
Other than the rattlesnakes waking up, not much else exciting happened in March, so let's move on to April.

Kata, Myself and mini-Chloe ;) post race!!
April I got back into the racing thing and started off the month with a last minute decision to race the Arizona MBAA XC Mountain bike race up in Prescott.  I headed up Friday and got to hang out with fellow Xterra racer Jaime Brede for a fun weekend of camping and bike racing!! This year has seen a big increase in the numbers for the women's pro/cat 1 field race making it so much more fun and exciting.  Chloe Woodruff was the class of the field and left us all in the dust, but Jaime, Kata Skaggs (another Xterra girl) and I fought it out until the very last lap.  Pretty sure my legs were about to fall off.  I followed that up with a quick transition run (ouch) then drove back down to Phoenix to meet up with Lisa Ribes and the first race of the AZ Open Water series in Tempe Town Lake Sunday morning.  We both got up early and did our long runs before jumping in for the 3k swim.  I am so lucky to be working with 2XU this year and wanted to get into my new awesome V3 wetsuit and try it out before the triathlon season got into full swing. In hindsight I packed WAY too much training/racing into the weekend, especially one week out of the Xterra series opener, and really paid the price in Vegas the next weekend.

Pre-riding with Racergirl Mel
Soooo Xterra West Champs rolled around and I decided to drive out instead of dealing with airlines, bike boxes, etc... I wasn't feeling horrible, but not great either in the couple of days leading up to the race.  I won't go into the course details, as by now the "Moonscape" that passes for a race course in Vegas has been beaten to death, uninspiring to say the least.  Race day rolled around and conditions were brutal, high temperatures and super high winds that nearly blew you off your bike (this isn't normal on a mountain bike).  I did my normal warm-up feeling pretty sluggish but hoped that jumping into the COLD water would wake me up.  I had a great swim, leading both the men and women out of the water, but then had nothing, and continued to have nothing for the entire race.  I contemplated dropping out more times than I can remember but couldn't bring myself to do it and ended up walking most of the 10k in to finish.  I have raced at the elite level 10yrs as a swimmer and going on 13yrs as a triathlete and this will go down as the hardest and worst race of my career.  The fact that I had a good swim makes things even more puzzling and I'm not sure I will ever figure out exactly what happened but it was definitely not my day.  I guess everyone has them every now and then but after the year I had in 2012 I was really hoping to get 2013 started off on a better note.

Not one to dwell on disappointments, I got back to Tucson, put my head down for some big training and signed up for the Whiskey 50 Off-Road mountain bike race in Prescott in the Pro division, why not;)  Turns out the start list was a comprehensive who's who of North American MTB racing.  If you are a mtber and haven't raced the Whiskey you absolutely need to put it on your schedule.  The weekend starts off on Friday night with the Pro Fat-tire Crit through the streets of downtown Prescott, lots of spectators, lots of fun, and lots of pain packed into a very short amount of time.  The amateurs head out on Saturday for their turn at either 25 or 50miles of pain and suffering and the Pro's get their turn at the full 50 on Sunday.  I was approaching this as a really hard day of training but also wanted to have a good race and ended up on the start line nervous and seriously wondering if I was completely out of my league!!  I also had forgotten sunscreen and was desperately walking through the spectators begging for some, duh.  As the last entry in I had number 52 out of 52 and joked that my goal was just to beat my plate number.

Thanks Andy for the cheers and photo!!
With over 7200ft of climbing I had to ride my own pace right from the start and I knew I wasn't going to take any chances of a spill on the technical stuff so was happy to find my own spot in the second half of the field.  I was super happy to ride solid the whole way and even started picking off girls on the 15mile climb out of Skull Valley.  My skills through the last sections of singletrack were seriously lacking, especially since I had not pre-ridden the course, but I got back into town safe, sound and happy in 30th!!

That pretty much brings April to a close, despite the boss's attempt to ship me back home!! (yes we do have a lot of fun even at work)  Lisa decided returning the plotter was probably a better decision and I got to stay;)  And since this is already a long post I will save my thankfully much happier Xterra Alabama race report for the next time!!!

Cheers :)

Tucson Sunset

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Ah-Ha.... It's 2013!!!

Yep, it's been a while, but the giant reset button has been pressed and things are finally starting to get moving in the right direction again.  I won't go into much detail, but I took a bunch of time off after Xterra Worlds to let the mind and body heal, enjoyed a great Christmas back in Canada with the family and have since been slowly building the fitness levels back up.  I didn't think I would lose as much fitness as I did, but I guess that is what you get for growing old ;)

Ready to head out on Lap 1 - 24HOP 2013!!
So fast forward to 2013!!  Still putting the pieces together, but got the season rolling with a shock to the nerves at the first race in the MBAA Arizona MTB series in January at McDowell Mountain Park.  I had a good 90mins in me, too bad the race was 110mins long.  Last 20 were pretty ugly, but you can't beat a day on the great trails at McDowell Mtn.  It did provide me with some extra motivation to get my butt in shape especially since 24hrs in the Old Pueblo was quickly approaching.

Our little piece of 24hr Town
24hrs in the Old Pueblo.... finally got out to see what all the hubbub was about!! I was fortunate enough to be apart of the 5 person coed team "Rudy Project Retreads" with a great group of guys, Nils, Steve, Hunter, and Darron.  We even had uber mechanic Joe Devera in town to make sure the machines were running smooth all night long.  Yep, were are pretty special ;)  Headed out to 24hr town Friday night in time to get an easy lap in before Steve (executive chef!!) cooked us up some awesome grub.  Did I mention we also had a full RV?  If you are going to do a 24hr race this is definitely the way to go, mechanic, chef, RV and awesome peeps!!  We were even treated to a gorgeous sunset.

Saturday it was a leisurely up and at'em for the noon start.  The weather was turning out to be perfect, unlike the usual curse of this weekend, warm and dry with a pretty good wind though.  I was 2nd in the running order and started my first lap shortly after 1pm.  Ran into a bit of traffic but just snuck in under the 1:10 mark for a solid lap time.  We had a team goal of a place on the podium and were sitting just there in 5th going into the night laps.  My 2nd lap was full on dark and only my second time out on the mtb with lights, yeehaa.  Still a bunch of traffic, but rode clean and solid and after a good nap put in another good night lap at 1am.  As a team we were knocking out consistent laps like nobody's business and slowly moved ourselves up into a rock solid 3rd position by the end of the night.  (the first two teams in our division were the pro-squads from Stans NoTubes and Nationwide)

Crazy "Le Mans" start with a couple hundred fellow cyclists!!
Soon enough it was Sunday morning and we were excited about getting in our last laps out on the course.  The wind had died down and the traffic had really thinned out and everyone turned in some serious lap times to hold onto our 3rd position, way to go TEAM!!  Results

2013 - 24hrs in the Old Pueblo crew
Overall a great experience and lots of awesome riding.  Tons of great stories, memories and new friendships and already looking forward to next year!! Definitely a must do.  (Also put in the best straight 12hrs of sleep I have ever had Sunday night ;)

Huge thanks has to go out to Pro-Mechanics Joe and Myron for keeping our machines running smooth the whole 24hrs.  Also to Energy Towels, an absolute must have for between laps, especially in the middle of the night.  Thanks also to our team sponsor Rudy Project for the great gear and to Power Bar for the nutritional supplies.  Biggest thanks goes out to my team-mates who made the whole thing so much fun :))))

Inspirational  Night Lap Message from the Mechanics :)
Not sure exactly what is up next but definitely lots of training miles to go!!

Monday, November 26, 2012

2012 Season is OVER!!!

So for the past three weeks I have been trying to think of a way to positively wrap up this season, sugar coat it so to speak.  Well, I can't do it.  This year SUCKED!! At least as far as triathlon went.  In the greater scheme of live and the world is wasn't so bad.  I have a great life with lots of opportunities, great friends and family, and in the end I will heal and recover and live to fight another day.  But as this is for the most part a blog about the triathlon side of my life, I will return to the summation that the only thing good about my 2012 triathlon season is that it is finally over, done, finished!! I can wipe the slate clean and be done with it.

Video streaming by Ustream
This short promo video done a couple of days before Xterra Worlds sums it up pretty well.  Please excuse the first 30secs.  They told me they weren't recording yet and I was joking around doing all the things I shouldn't do during the video :0 If you can lip read there are a good couple f-bombs in there!!

I think Nils pretty much summed up how the day was going to go in this photo!!! 

Setting up transition
Needless to say my calf didn't hold up for the race a few days later.  I hadn't tested it at all in the five weeks since injuring it at Xterra USA and was hoping for a race day miracle.  I taped it up best I could and headed down to the start.  To add to the injustice of it all, the swim was finally challenging and was looking pretty epic as we headed into the surf.  Unfortunately my calf was so bad I could barely run on the sand and had to limp into the water pretty much getting pummeled and stuck behind the entire pro field.  The midway beach run and run up to transition after the swim were about as ugly as it could get without me actually starting to walk.

I got on my bike with the two leaders, Mari Rabie and Barbara Rivera, and tried to get my head in gear.  I knew at this point that there was no way that I could run, but I could have a great bike and since I didn't race Worlds in 2011 this was my chance to get a race pace effort on the course if for nothing else than to be better prepared for next year.  Not sure I accomplished that goal very well, but I did get through it and called it a day in T2.
Big and Lil Fish
the 'Girls' tailgating pre-Halloween Party!!
As bad as the race itself went, the trip was a lot of fun.  Big thank you to the "Lil Fish" for coming out to cheer and hang out.  Also to the housemates, Shelby, Branden, and Dave for an awesome group to stay with!!

Last but definitely not least, I'd like to wrap it up with a huge thank you to my sponsors who supported me through everything:  Sean and Champsys for the amazing (and incredibly stylish) racesuits and training gear,  Native Eyewear for my great glasses, Maxxis for the best tires out there, Nineteen and their awesome wetsuits, Extreme Endurance, Honeystinger, and Zipfizz for their wonderful products that kept me hydrated, fueled, recovered, strong and healthy.  Also big thanks to my coach Gareth Thomas for guiding me through the tough times and putting up with not a lot of good news coming in on the training logs!!

Throughout this year the reputed Chinese curse "May you live in interesting times" has often popped into my head.  Here's hoping for a much less interesting 2013!!!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Xterra USA

I haven't really been too excited about writing this race report, hence the two week delay since Xterra USA Nationals.  Overall the race went about as well as could be expected considering how my year has been going and I'm happy with my 6th place finish.  However, the resulting aftermath is just typical of what I am going to chalk up to as simply the curse of 2012.
Swim Start - Xterra Photos
The pro's had a slight head start in front of the amateurs and it was nice and clean.  I quickly got in behind Ben Allen and Craig Evans with Branden Rakita right in the mix.  The three of us couldn't hold Ben's pace through the 2nd lap and came out of the water a couple of seconds down with a nice gap behind us to the next guys.  My swim is finally really starting to feel good and I was excited to be swimming right where I should at a comfortable pace, especially after feeling like I was going to die at Xterra Canada.
Wheeler Canyon - Photo Emma Garrard
Onto the bike I was feeling the best I have all season.  I held onto the lead all the way through the first two climbing sections getting caught by Mel and Suzie right at the top before the first descent.  I stuck with them for a bit and thought I might just hang on, but the pace was just out of reach.  Leslie, Danelle, and Renata gradually reeled me in and passed me up the long climb to Sardine Peak and I rolled into T2 in 6th place, right about where I thought I would be.
Middle Fork Trail - Photo Nils Nilsen
I started the run feeling pretty good, legs were light and turning over nicely.  I had been nursing a bit of a niggle in my left calf and a chronically sore right Achilles tendon for the week and a half leading into the race but was hoping that by easing into the run I could let them warm-up and get through the run without any problems.  Usually my Achilles is a bit stiff and sore for the first couple of minutes then loosens up and is fine, unfortunately not this time.  By halfway through it was progressively getting more and more sore and putting lots of strain on my soleus, which was in turn tightening up.  A slight stumble in some congestion when the sprint course joined back into our course sent a shooting pain up my calf and I almost just had to laugh, really I just can't seem to get a break this year can I.  All I could do was hobble into the finish hoping the damage wasn't too bad.
Fall Colours on Run - Photo Emma Garrard
By evening my ankle was starting to bruise and swell along the side of my tendon.  After two days in the car driving home from Utah I had cankles the size of Canada. Is this season almost over, please!!!

Anyways, only three weeks to go until worlds and then it will be over.  Making the best of what I can do training wise and will just have to roll the dice in Maui and see what comes up.  Good news is no matter what happens I will be in Maui :)

Friday, September 28, 2012

Xterra USA - Pre-race video...

Little late, but just figured out how to convert this video from DVD to digital.  Fun little interview I did with Park City TV the week before the race!!