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SVEN was amazing!!!!!(8 posts)

SVEN was amazing!!!!!Jan Gerrit Klok = "TUFO-man"
Oct 7, 2001 11:31 AM
Yesterday in Harderwijk, Netherlands. A UCI cat. 3 race.
I have little experience and dito training, so after 48 mins (on a 5-6 min lap) Sven Nijs was the first to double me. I had to ride extra hard to be allowed to do one more, let him by some 50 meters behind the line :-)
That was inside a large truck they'd used to build a barrier. A stairway led into the truck, you ran and mounted inside and then rode off. I cheered him on, hopped on and started a impossible chase. Maybe I lost nothing in two fast 90 degree left-handers (all nice grass), but with a ultra-slow left-right combination he got a massive lead. When I got out of those corners he was already far down the next straight. Incredible, this guy just doesn't waste any time!!

I now hope to find the motivation to pick up training and win the single minute I would have needed to be able to finish on the same lap, that would be great!

Will anyone of you join my chanceless battle against the pro's this winter? Next on the calendar are some Super Prestige races in Holland. My dreams are of that one single UCI point...

Oh, and I made it to National TV, as one of the pack at the start :-)

Happy trails,

Jan_Gerrit from Holland
re: SVEN was amazing!!!!!Wayne
Oct 8, 2001 5:53 AM
"I have little experience and dito training, so after 48 mins (on a 5-6 min lap) Sven Nijs was the first to double me." If you're not an accomplished road rider or mtn biker, I'd think you have a pretty bright future in cyclo-cross or any other cycling discipline. Can anyone do one of these races in Europe, don't they have different categories? I guess here in the states anyone could sign up for the elite race but usually there are other races, such as "B" fields or masters where you could be more competitive and/or get some experience. How about road racing? Are there different categories or would a beginner be racing against El. 2's or pros?
re: SVEN was amazing!!!!!Jan Gerrit Klok = "Tufo-man"
Oct 8, 2001 6:42 AM
I´ve been riding MTB for a couple of years, but never really serious when it comes to training and preparation.
This spring I did a few races where I felt really strong, first time powering up the steepest of hills, scoring a couple of top-10 finishes in the Sports class in Holland.

I stopped most of my training (as far as I ever did any) in the summer break and felt the diffence in the next races. I feel like the rider I was last year ago : Heavy, nice straightline speed, but few explosive power.

The track in Harderwijk was really easy, just dry grass under a nice sun and 18 degrees Celcius. Perfect for me.

And yes, there are good lower classes to race. Every (inter-)national cross features seperate races in the Sports and Veterans class. Lots of difference in speed.
At regional level there are of course also Sports-B races, but often with very few starters.

On the road the same, but then los of starters. The approach to racing is very mature, but the riders just a that slight but less juice in the legs.

One must-have though, is a licence. My spors licence is internationally equalized to "Elite Men", allowing me to start these races. Only World Cups and the WC I cannot start, so I´m just having a blast, always comparing myself with the best in the world. This weekend I was lapped, hopefully one day I won´t be.

Do you plan on starting a cycling career here?
re: SVEN was amazing!!!!!Wayne
Oct 8, 2001 9:43 AM
I'm far too old, and doubt I ever had the talent anyway to make a career out of cycling. I was just curious how things are run over there. I sort of had the impression that elite races in Holland or Belgium would be filled with pro's or would-be pro's and that getting in would be rather hard, but it sounds very much like the races here.
Jan, any chance you would be willing to tape cyclocross races off of Dutch TV for me? Of course, I would pay for shipping and tapes. Email me personally if willing.
re: SVEN was amazing!!!!!Jan Gerrit Klok = "Tufo-man"
Oct 8, 2001 6:49 AM
BTW, there were some interational starters in the other classes as well, although purely national races. I saw some Germans and Belgians there as well.
The Elite field had 23 pro´s among it, cool to be starting among them and trying to follow then they lap you.
re: SVEN was amazing!!!!!climbo
Oct 8, 2001 7:03 AM
now that would be a BLAST to line up against those guys. Good luck for the season!!! If anything I'll see some of the top US racers and maybe some Euro pros in the NE. As to racing against them, I'll leave that until next year if I get any good results this year. Cheers.
re: SVEN was amazing!!!!!Jan Gerrit Klok
Oct 8, 2001 11:30 AM
Very few riders take the opportinity to race the pro's like I do, just because there is nothing to win, not even fame.
Local heroes, real gods in their sport, would be totally blown away and doomed to follow my fate : being lapped by the likes of Nijs and Vervecken. Even the #3 mountainbiker in Holland, Jan weevers gets lapped at certain occasions!

I don't mind being lapped, it's a motivator to make sure I'll once have the speed to avoid it from happening. Very easy also to see my progress, always comparing it to the best. For they will always be at the same level, I am still very able to improve since my training was never very serious and my diet non-existing.

My advantage over you guys is that I only have to drive 1-2 hours to get to most mayor races. But you have the advantage that there are mountains and trails everywhere, and summers are great for biking.

See you in Europe some time!
re: SVEN is amazing!!!!!gutterball
Oct 11, 2001 12:57 PM
I had the chance to spend the month of October in Antwerp...I went over with the idea that I would jump in on a few 'lower' class races. NO WAY!! I saw Tim Johnson freak out and slap someones wheel and destoyed a set of heliums because he knew what he was in for. Those guys are so amazingly fast and smooth. Only a handful of Americans can compare to any number of capable racers from Belgium and the Netherlands. Your my hero for trying!!