Crankworx Canada Cup

Crankworx is an amazing festival and one that always reminds me why I love to ride bikes. This year the Norco Factory XC team was represented by Evan “Mcsneaky” Mcneely and Andrew “Lespy” L’Esperance. After a very full two days of travel after the Windham World Cup, which consisted of flying from New York to Kelowna on Monday and driving to Whistler on Tuesday, myself and the boys settled in for a couple good sleeps and course preparations.

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Chris Vezina Photo

This was the last big xc race of the season, the last chance to race and show the form, and a chance to redeem after a poor World Cup only 4 days before. Norco came in with Peter Disera leading the overall Canada Cup series and Mcneely in second. The pressure was on for us to perform and take that leaders jersey home, again. We also brought 3 guys and knew we could put everyone on the podium.

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Chris Vezina Photo

Lespy blitzed the first lap and it took about 10 minutes for my legs to come around after they were a little slow-going in warm up. From there I knew it was going to be a good day. By midway through lap 2/5 I had a little gap and was pushing forward. I won my first Canada Cup here in 2006 as a U-17 Cadet Expert and I wanted to win this one, badly. I usually pride myself on not flatting or getting mechanicals because, in my opinion, it’s a reflection of how you’re riding that triggers those issues, unless you have a fat nail in your tire or a part fails.

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Chris Vezina Photo

And then it happened, the flat tire. While my back wheel slid out on a corner and a divot in the rock face caught the sidewall of my rim, it flattened so much the tire wasn’t able to stay beaded and the air was lost. Not a tire failure by any means but my fault for charging hard. I raced with a saddle bag and tube, as this was a rocky race. Changed the tube and fell to 9th or 10th. In the next half lap I picked up two spots before pulling into the pits and doing a wheel change. Back to 10th. The fire was fuelled and I took off, pulling all the way back to 3rd at the finish. It truly was a great day on the bike. Shit happens though and you make the best of it. I did get drug tested after and completed one of my life goals of giving a beer-coloured pee sample. Small wins.

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Chris Vezina Photo

It was important to finish the season racing the way I know I should be. The excitement continued with a couple days of riding trail bikes around Whistler, going out on the town and riding the lifts. Monday I did my first Grouse Grind before visiting Norco HQ and Jay Hoots’ bike park in Hope, BC.

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Norco’s Factory Racing DH team and Team Norco International were out in full force and making podium appearances in almost every event at Crankworx. It was a great time time to be part of the Norco family.

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Now, we switch bikes to bigger squishy ones for some Enduro racing this fall. I’m back over to Europe to take on the final two Enduro World Series races in Spain and Italy.

I can’t say thank you enough or show my appreciation for all the support I’ve received this year. The support network in key to success.

Norco News: http://www.norco.com/news/2015/08/team-news-crankworx/

Results: http://pedalmag.com/canada-mtb-cup-xc4-whistler-results-final-standings/

http://canadiancyclist.com/dailynews.php?id=29979&title=canada-cup-xc-5-whistler

Chris Vezina photos: https://cndkids.smugmug.com/Sports/Cycling/2015-Whistler-Canada-Cup/n-Wh2cnh

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Riding the park with Jay Hoots

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Hoots Park

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Top of the World, Whistler peak chair.

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Blackcomb riding with Evan, Andrew, Geoff Kabush, Peter Glassford and Amanda Sin.

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Elite men and women podium.

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Happened to find a girl wit with same shirts as our team(not pictured in them).

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Chris Vezina Photo