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Provincial uphill Road Bike Championships- Welcome back to the "hurt box"
By:  Matthias Purdon   (2011/09/22)

Last Friday the Ontario uphill road bike championships rose from the ashes like a phoenix of explosive effort and pain to the worthiest of venues in Ontario: Scenic Caves Road.  Making for a tough 3km ride this particular stretch of road climbs 275 meters up the Niagara Escarpment at an average pitch of 9% maxing out at 15%.  Accommodating the schedules of working people the race began at 6pm, the sun already set behind the "mountain", it felt dark and a little chilly at the start line. 
Adding an element of excitement to the event was the chance, if you made the top 16 finishers, to compete in a televised TIMEX vertical challenge the next day with 6000 dollars in prize money.  Saturday's TIMEX event featured a new format looking much like a sprint ski race with heats of 8 racing up the hill with the top 4 advancing to an 8 person final.  The whole thing will be aired in what is sure to be a very dramatic TSN sports special.  Darned if I wasn't 17th!  With no expectations going in I was really happy with this result.  Pretty excellent training too! (I substituted this workout for a zone 5 interval session).  I think skiers have potential to make a mark in the road bike world in an event like this.  We should try to make ourselves known next year.  I know I will be back. 

Here is a nice photo of view and the steepest part of the climb.  (http://www.panoramio.com/photo/38478935)

Here I am starting out.  Thanks to Jane Thomson for the Photo. 

thanks for reading!

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