Friday, 26 October 2007

Worlds: Final Thoughts

Accommodation: Bass Hill Tourist Park is very close to the velodrome, supermarket etc,so very handy in that regard. Our cabin was also very cramped, dirty, the sofabed lounge was broken (ie you were trapped once you sat in it), noisy, the highway is smelly and bad for asthma and hay fever, and did I say cramped? Not staying there again, now I know how everything runs at the velodrome during World champs.

Eating out: limited in Bass Hill. The Handlebar Tavern couldn't cope with its regular customers and another 400 odd new regulars.

The Velodrome: cool, easy to get into and out of, the track is a treat to ride on, toilets within easy distance, plus there is a bar and crit circuit to roll the legs out on.

The Event: overall very well run, despite every effort to make me male. The commissaires/organisers and volunteers were helpful, supportive and worked hard and long to create a successful event. There were no dramas, no hassles, no fuss. My only criticisms would be to do with women's racing and the way age groups were combined, plus losing the team sprints and nearly losing the pointscore. Expect some political lobbying in the near future from some active Americans.

The Competition: fierce and professional. Excellent comraderie, fantastic to meet new people from all over the globe (well, the States mainly for me). I felt welcomed and accepted by the old hands who made my first Worlds easier and more enjoyable, less stressful than it otherwise could have been. It was excellent to see familiar faces from home - it was a DISC reunion in many ways. It was also excellent to see those familiar faces do extremely well, and to see tears of relief, joy, shock, overwhelmnedness as people medalled. Inspirational, motivational, bloody hard work, challenging, and absolutely worth it.

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