Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Las Vegas 2.0: Interbike

Less than two weeks after 70.3 Worlds, Mark and I headed back to Vegas to have fun help out at the booth a bit during Interbike.  Neither of us had ever been to Interbike and had heard that it is truly bike porn for those of us lovers of all things on two wheels.  There was also the opportunity to race Cross Vegas for Mark and he couldn't resist. Couple that that we had also only ever been to Vegas together for races and we knew we needed to go and have a GOOD time with friends.

Wednesday night was Cross Vegas and Mark rode over to the race and I met him after a run.  Now most CX races take place in Belgium when winter is descending and the conditions are cold, muddy and not at all Vegas like.  Even in the Bay Area, CX races are usually in the fog and have an air of Fall about them.  Cross riders are known for their grit.  Vegas would offer them the opportunity to show a different side of their grit. Last week it was still 95+ in Vegas and the race started for M at 5PM.  Did I mention the guy in arm warmers?  Dude had sweat dripping off his face and evaporating so quickly he looked like a salt block.  It was 40 minutes of pure madness as the racers took on a 9-10 minute lap of grass, barriers to hop over and stairs.  I ran around like a mad woman with a camera around my neck snapping photos.  Mark finished well and upon crossing, looked like a man who hadn't had a drink in weeks, politely asked me for a cold beverage. I have to return the SUPER sherpa duties a few times a year since Mark is pretty much the best you could ask for at my races.  I met up with Jeff from Sinclair, and he got me an Argon18 for me to demo on my ride with Chrissie the next morning.  As soon as I hopped on that rocket ship ride, I was in heaven.  Fast and fit me like a glove. 

Me, Lance and Mario Cipollini
JP, me and Chrissie
I had contacted my other sponsors that I knew would be in Vegas to offer up my assistance and ended up getting treated like royalty instead.  Ummm, when can we go back?  Already making plans to go back next year and "help".  Turns out Cytomax team mate Chrissie Wellington was going to be doing a small group ride put together by the awesome crew at Cyto/Muscle Milk, and would I like to go?  Muscle Milk for breakfast AND riding with Chrissie?  Count me in.  This would also mean that I got to escape the strip, a land where people take pictures in front of water falls that smell like chlorine...can it be that they actually think it's pretty?  So, I woke my butt up at 5:00 to get shuttled outside of Stripland to meet at a local bike shop and ride the 35 miles with Chrissie and co.  I was determined not to be "that girl", you know the one, "oh Chrissie, I am your BIGGEST fan, please sign my forehead!"  She was amazing at working through the crew of riders and chatting.  We ended up talking about how I came to be in Vegas and I mentioned the team and she immediately knew about our teammate Amy, who had been hit by a gravel truck not a week earlier and asked what she could do for her.  I was amazed...that she knew our team and that she offered to help in any way she could to support her recovery.  Amy now has a book signed by CW to look forward to reading when she wakes up.  That is RAD.  Also, it turns out that Vegas is pretty once you are off the strip, although at night the strip is definitely alive with energy and has it's own beauty.

Sisters From Anotha Motha
OK, back to booth babe duty Thursday morning and then it was time for the REAL fun to begin.

Big George!
The team at Sinclair hosts THE party of Interbike every year at club XS.  I have only heard of this party, famous cyclists, cycling streaming on the mega screens in the club while music thumps and drinks flow.  Like a dream really for me, a previous lover of all things thumping in clubs and bikes.  We were invited to pre-party with the crew and I was excited to get dressed up and hit the town!  Cue gratuitous photos of me with some cycling icons, George H, Bobke Roll, Todd "Gogo" Gogulski.

Bikes in Clubs: Pure genius

Gogo Inserting Himself into Photos
Aside from cycling, I got to hit up Topshop, my fave place to shop in London, that now has a shop in Vegas, hang with friends, workout in the desert and then come home to my new baby niece and a BIG weekend of workouts.

The Argonettes
Life is darn good right now.  And in only a few weeks, we will head to Kona to have even more fun with friends.  Looking forward to seeing some of you there!

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