The anticipation is growing

It’s Friday in Christchurch, and tomorrow is the beginning of Epic Camp.  The beginning, at least, of meeting all the guys and gals I’ll be trying to keep up with over the next 8 days.

Yesterday was arrival day, and the long journey from San Francisco went smoothly, other than the fact that none of our luggage made the connecting flight in Auckland.  However, Air New Zealand baggage reps told us everything was coming on the next flight and that they would deliver it to us.  Since our friends’ car wasn’t big enough to carry my bike box anyway, this turned out to be a good thing.  The first three pieces arrived at our friends’ apartment a couple of hours later, and it was only the bike that was further delayed.  The same friendly driver showed up a few hours later as promised with the bike.

If you ever questioned whether you needed an expensive, heavy duty bike case vs a cardboard box, you should take a look at my bike case.  After a grand total of seven trips, the plastic is cracked in several places, the latches have been bent several times — in short, it’s taken a lot of abuse.  The bike, on the other hand, is unscathed, my poor mechanical skills notwithstanding.  Actually, that brings me to collateral investment number 2:  the torque wrench.  If you travel regularly to races or events with a carbon-fiber bike, you owe it to yourself and to your bike to have one of these.  I know folks who have cracked their frames, steerer tubes or seatposts by overtightening bolts, so if a $300 tool can protect a $5000+ investment (as well as future $5000+ investments since most of us have more than one bike), it seems a small price.  Off my soapbox on that.

This morning I felt some active recovery from the journey was in order, so I took a little run around Hagley Park, which is right by our friends’ flat and is also close to the motel where the Epic Campers will spend the first couple of nights.  Did 30 minutes easy, thinking it might be my last easy run for awhile — the rest will be done with accumulated fatigue from more training than I’ve ever done in one block before.

The weather here is generally predicted to be “fine,” not that I’m certain what that means.  It’s been mostly overcast with occasional sun and temps in the upper 60s F for the high.  Pretty good training weather, actually, though I like it a little warmer than that on the bike.

Wish me luck! 🙂