When you’re in an incredible place to ride the riding is going to get worse at some point upon leaving. This came in the form of the A1A which runs along the beaches of South Florida. Riding along sunny beaches and palm trees may sound luxurious but after about ten minutes the endless flat and a constant barrage of cars gets old. The weather though of 80’s and sun did make up for a bit of it. The daily stops for coffee or lunch, or breakfast on the 7am group ride days, made it bearable along with the pleasures of being right on a beach. A teammate and I also ventured to the Everglades and rode a 30k dirt levy path of which we should have been doing everyday as there were more alligators than cars or people to deal with. Also with the Twlight Crit to look forward to on our last night in Florida made the time fly by.
The Delray Crit was our first race of the season and I’d say we started it off with a pretty good bang. We knew we had a strong team but didn’t know how well we would race as a team and personally how the legs were going to react to a crit having been training in the mountains the previous two months. We raced a tactically great race and a show of strength in the race with teammate Remi Pelletier-Roy winning out of a breakaway that started only a few laps into the race. With the highs of racing until almost 11 at night and caffeine I slept maybe an hour and then we were off at 6am to the Garneau Grand Fondo-Florida. Despite the tired legs and lack of sleep it was a fun ride with seeing the sun rise over the ocean along with having a rolling enclosure to blow red lights. Also the mid-ride and post ride food was incredible especially having pretty much naught for breakfast.
Leaving Florida brought two negatives. A 30+ hour drive along with feet and feet of snow upon arrival to Quebec. We went squarely from summer to full blown winter which normally I don’t mind winter but when you’re expecting spring… So going from amazing riding in North Carolina to the mind numbing flat of Florida was to be made even worse by a week of riding inside. But now we are in California (well at the moment I’m mid-flight over the Rockies) and have nice weather to enjoy and hopefully a great week of racing at the Redlands Classic, the first NRC Stage Race of the year.