‘Just come out and sup­port Cana­dian sport’

Canadian Cycling Magazine - - WHAT’S HOT -

“Where is ev­ery­one?” San­dra Wal­ter asked. She was in Ni­cholls Oval Park in Peter­bor­ough, Ont. That af­ter­noon, she’d race in ptbo cx Lift Lock Cross, a C2-level cy­clocross event that would fol­low the pre­vi­ous day’s na­tional cham­pi­onships. Wal­ter has com­peted in ’cross na­tion­als for eight con­sec­u­tive sea­sons. This past Novem­ber, she had lined up against Maghalie Ro­chette, Jenn Jack­son and four other women. There were only seven rid­ers com­pet­ing for the elite women’s ti­tle, which had oth­ers ask­ing the same ques­tion as Wal­ter: where is ev­ery­one?

Maghalie Ro­chette, who de­fended her na­tional ti­tle, mused that ge­og­ra­phy might be a fac­tor. Canada is a large coun­try and trav­el­ling to na­tion­als, which changes lo­ca­tion ev­ery two years, can be a chal­lenge. Nat­u­rally, the makeup of the fields do re­flect the re­gions in which the cham­pi­onships are held. I n 2014 and 2015, more western rid­ers came out to com­pete in Win­nipeg. In 2016 and 2017, Que­bec was well rep­re­sented in Sher­brooke. Still, Wal­ter was a bit mys­ti­fied by the turnout this past year in the prov­ince with the high­est pop­u­la­tion i n Canada. “We saw smaller fields here than at lo­cal B.C. races,” said the rider from Co­quit­lam, B.C.

“I think it’s re­ally im­por­tant that the cy­clocross com­mu­nity comes out and sup­ports the events. If you don’t think you are fit enough: what­ever. Just come out and sup­port Cana­dian sport,” she said, hop­ing that all rid­ers will travel to na­tion­als in Vic­to­ria next year. “Bring your A game. Even if you don’t have your A game, bring your B game.” Wal­ter brought her game to Peter­bor­ough. Even though she hadn’t re­ally been on her bike much fol­low­ing Cy­cling Canada’s Olympic test event in Tokyo al­most a month pre­vi­ous, she raced. She placed third, which marked her fifth podium fin­ish in six years.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.