17 August 2011

Epic Camp France 2011 Day 1 - Lyon - Embrun

Epic Camp France 2011 - Day 1  Lyon - Embrun   120km+ 
 For those of you who love Google there’s the link of the route today.  Many on the camp have some GPS device which makes life a little easier when riding in foreign lands.
On our 125km ride today there was plenty of tempo which was a little surprising considering what’s in store over the 8 days of the camp.
 Even 50-yr old Dr. Douglas Scott was hammering at the front for a while early in the ride, and I know he’s been sick and was in Hong Kong for a week just prior to the camp and un-able to train at all.  And this is his 4th Epic Camp! 
I was thinking as I was hanging onto the back of the paceline that I’d like to know what the hell he was thinking but I couldn’t actually get up there to ask.
  We did have one KOM on the route today and Clas took it out with Zack Poehlman from San Diego in 2nd.  I think its pretty clear that unless those guys are shattered or wanting to cruise a bit that they will be getting most of the KOM points on this camp.  
 I was dropped well before the KOM by most of the group including Christine Hemphill who lives near Annecy.  She’s obviously very comfortable riding int he mountains. 
After the KOM we had a drink stop so I was able to get back on and we cruised to Embrun but had one more big climb to get over as we rode some of the Tri course backwards.
Total elevation gain for the day was around 2,000m.

Since we needed to leave our bikes in transition overnight we went straight to the transition and registration in town.  After mucking around trying to get Clas into the race we finally got going on a shortened run (30 minutes) and swim 20 minutes). 
  The Oly Distance race we’re doing has been full since May and sells out immediately.  The race director Mr. Iacono generously let us in when I contacted him in April.  But they haven’t allowed last minute entries since the mid-90’s.
And its amazing they fill the race because its a bloody incredible course with over 3,000ft of hard climb on the 43km bike course.  Randy was commenting that you really couldn’t get 90% of the average triathletes in the IUSA to even complete a course like this.
 We drove up to our accom (up the D9) at the gite-de-la-drayetel , Hamaeau de la Montagne.
The reason I spell that all out is because we want to remember the nasty 2,000ft climb over 10km that we’ll be riding tomorrow after the race............
Damn good day so start the camp except for 2 small incidents!
  Douglas and Steven crashed en-route to Embrun with Steven breaking his derailleur hanger and then a few guys tumbled over at about 5km/hour uphill en-route to registration.  2 silly tumbles that took off a fair amount of skin.  Luckily Steven packed a spare hanger for this trip.  Who (except him) would think of that???

I'll leave it to the others with camera's and blogging savvy to post some photos. 
I love this place!