With the van well packed with bikes, spares, kit and anything else we thought we might need, Phil and I drove from Morzine to Alpe D`Huez. We left Morzine in blazing sun to arrive in drizzle. Not too bad apparently to settle the dust! The hotel rented by Flow Mtb for the week is fantastic, perfect for mountainbikers. Very relaxed with great staff and good bar. The deal is fantastic with Full Board, entry and great ensuite rooms and bike storeage. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for next years Mega.
First day was spent practicing the qualifying course with Phil, Willy and Neil from Morzine. The weather was fantastic and minimal bumps at this early stage during the week. I opted to ride the Rocky Mountain Flatline on the first day. I find the course is always a little daunting at first and a big DH bike gobbles everything up with ease, settling the pilot! The bottom of the track was new with BMX style berms and jumps. Great fun and hoot to ride in a train! Uplifts were a little on the poor side and a long wait in the heat is not what a rider needs when the bar is calling at the end of the day!
Some of the accomodation was limited on bike storage in resort!
The ensuing days went by in a blur….Left my decision right till the last moment as to strategy and which bike to use. The Glacier was interesting, minimal snow and a black ice field and rock… Phil did not like it at all! He is right in saying it makes the race too much of a lottery!
I really desperately needed an up and downey seatpost, my Crank Bros Joplin was the wrong size for my bikes and pennies would not stretch to a Reverb…..Think these items are a mega essential and good for 10 minutes in a race!
The rocks were a bike beater and many a photo opportunity were made available each time we stopped to fix one of the flats! An omen for the race?