The season is in full swing!
I totally love my new team, “Israel Go Pro”
Ran and Niv, the two main riders from the team, are doing really well. They won Eilat on wheels and the Tour de Israel. Every stage… every race. I on the other hand, have been hanging in there despite some pre race bee bites, 2 broken derailleurs, 4 broken spokes, 2 broken chains and my lack of ability to produce the 6000 watts I would need to win a race… I’ll just go through some pros and cons of my time here racing and post tons of pictures as to not scare you with a big block of uninterrupted text.
Things that are great:
Friends on other teams: The last few races I have cultivated some alliances with other riders from other teams. This is especially useful because while my teammates are off winning the race I can be suffering with someone else closer to my ability.
Yuval is my main man. Check this rare sequence of a never before caught on film altruistic water bottle handoff…
Purim: On Purim, a Jewish holiday that comes with a drunken Halloween style party, we raced the Chaim Yoav Road Race. Just like cross race on Halloween, people are often festive in the peloton. I suffered, but in the good company of a stuffed rat on a fellow racer’s back.
Weather: Its sunny and nice. Not rainy and cold. That is all.
Traveling: Through these races I have explored interesting parts of the country I had not seen before. Here is a picture of Machtesh Ramon, the largest crater in the world.
Awesome Teammates: Even though I am not quite strong enough to be in the breakaway with these guys, Ran and Niv thank me for my contributions after every race, even if it is just fetching water from the team car during a feed zone. Niv even supplied me with one of the two derailleurs that I destroyed!
feed from the left with the left hand in the air... at least thats what I think they said in hebrew during the pre race meeting...
Things that could be better:
Broken bike parts: My pulley exploded out of my rear derailleur during the Eilat road race. I alone was in the middle of the desert with little water and a broken bike for a terrifying 20 minutes. Thankfully there was a chase bus, but unfortunately this meant I had to ride in a bus for the last 60km…
didn't work so well with just one pulley...
The second time was even better
The Weather: Its really hot, I get up at 5 am to ride… blessing and a curse
Language Barrier: The pre race meetings are extremely confusing and I usually need a recap in english to understand our tactics. I keep missing important rules. The last lap is worth double points!? I keep screwing this up…
Tel Aviv: The Yarkon Park has a nice 1.15 mile loop to train on with few interruptions from pedestrians and no cars. However, without a car it’s hard to get to nicer rides and get in a long day. Thankfully I have met some nice riders who have driven me to their triathlete “I think I’m going to take it easy so I can run later…” rides and to some nicer areas in Nachshon and Latrun (awesome hills and amazing sceneries).
nice bikes, even nicer people!
Steve: Shopopengartenaganer is coming to Israel. This should be in the “things that are great” category, but of course I put it here because he seems to beat me a lot in the mud during cross season and it hurts my self esteem… Looking forward to your arrival Steve.
This weekend I head off to the Negbah Race. Another three race weekend with the crew. Wish me luck!