Junior Division Road Camp – Heriot
This weekend 40 junior cyclists and 8 parents and helpers embarked on the bustling town of Heriot in West Otago. This is the second year we have used Heriot as the base for two gruelling training days mixed with a bit of fun and games and some great food.
For those of you that don’t know Heriot is surrounded by several long steep hills, ideal for a training camp pre Yunca tour, it also has a great community hall, ideal to sleep 40 cyclists and be the venue for the annual dodge ball tournament and cranium championships.
The first training ride on Saturday saw the riders broken into three groups, one with a hilly 40 km loop, all the u13 and some u15 taking on this challenge with Dave, Alan and Sier in tow. We had some very new riders up there and they did extremely well on such testing terrain.
Group two included most of the U17 and U19 girls, we headed over the Ettrick hill and tackled that on the way back up.. a brilliant ride, over 65 km with not a single piece of flat road. Matt ,Piet Bulling and I went along with this group, the highlight being Matt’s severe cramp on the final hill of the day ... stick to the track Matt!! Great rides by all in this group pushing themselves harder than usual, great prep for Yunca. The U19, along with honorary appearances by Paddy Daly and Matt Zenovich tackled a similar route but went into Roxburgh and over the Roxburgh Dam. Logan Havenaar, Chris Sexton and Paddy doing extremely well sticking with the more senior guys most of the way. Great to see.
The riders who were teamed up into colour groups were not allowed too much rest before getting stuck into the annual Dodge Ball Challenge. This provided all with many laughs, especially the inaccuracy of Brehan Cairns throwing arm, (again Brehan, it had to hit on the full) Hamish Beadle's bright green gardening gloves and dance moves to boot, and of course the parents/kids battle to conclude with a very triumphant Sier Vermunt sealing the victory for the parents in the bonus battle. For the record, Green led by Dillon (D Buzz) Bennett took out the Dodge ball in a close battle with Marcel’s Red team in the final to earn them that bonus battle round.
Once again the food the riders bought was spot on, a huge feast prepared by Andrea, Kathryn, Joss, & Michelle was definitely enjoyed by some calorie craving children and adults before the next team activity of cranium. Although the riding was of high standard some of the acting abilities are a little shaky, although the blindfolded drawing was pretty impressive, I do think the adults constantly nominating art teacher Joss Beadle for the drawing rounds was slightly unfair but let’s just say justice was served.
First up Sunday morning Piet Bulling gave the riders a great insight into his experiences on his recent junior world campaign, how he got there and his coming goals. Pieter is a very focused young man and I am already feeling sorry for his opponents at next year’s Junior Worlds. This was a great talk and I hope the others take alot out of this. Following the mornings inside stuff, the real thing got underway. The gruelling 4 km Hill Time Trial. This was done extremely well and some great performances were noted. Marcel Baird having the fastest time of the day. Great to see Marcel back to top form after crashing heavily on the camp last year and being out for several months. Paigan Marshall took out the girls hill climb and Hayden Strong the we kids. Hayden provided us with some great laughs when his Dad Alan thought he would leave and follow him up the hill. Hayden went so fast Alan couldn’t catch him much to his disgust (i’m sure delight inside!) Great rides from josh Haggerty (6th place) Jordan Copeland (9th) Kelsey Timpany (20th) and a storming ride by rookie Noah Knol (18th) over all and beating his much more senior counterparts. The green team showed their versatility by once again winning the time trial challenge sealing their overall team victory. After the hill time trial the riders experienced some team race settings. After a morning talk by H and J Smith rider Dillon Bennett who talked about riders roles in team scenarios, the riders got to try this out for themselves on a tight 3 km circuit. This was raced extremely hard by most, rounding out a tough weekend’s riding.
A big thankyou to all the parent help who made life easy , and the positive attitudes and extremely pleasant riders who made it such a valuable weekend. I hope you all took some learnings and improved fitness away with you.
Well Done !!
VIDEO UPDATE: 2010 Junior Road Camp
Take a look behind the scenes at some of the action from this year's camp below: