Mr. Riel Rides Again

This weekend Manitobans everywhere celebrate Louis Riel Day, a holiday bestowed upon us by the Provincial Government after we whined sufficiently about the lack of a holiday between Christmas and Easter. We also played the ever-effective “But Alberta gets a day off!” card, which eventually worked.

How does one celebrate a holiday dedicated to a dead Métis guy? Some people celebrate by spending it with their families, but I will observe Rule #11 and spend the better part of the morning on my bike trainer at the 2nd annual Are You for Riel 100 mile stationery ride at the Wellness Institute. I think I’ll pass on the full 100 miles, thanks, but the plan is to grind it out for 3.5 hours, which is already pretty crazy, but seems less so when you have company.

(shhhhh… I think Kevin B. just fell asleep)

If you’re interested in joining in the (ahem) fun, the ride starts at 8:30am on Monday, February 21. Cost is $5. Bring your own nutrition and hydration, but whatever you do, don’t bring your helmet, or we will mock you. Unless you are riding rollers.

In other news, the MCA just released the (tentative) 2011 race calendar! How exciting. Some changes this year: more TT’s, a TTT and more roadie goodness. The CX schedule has some new races (more on that later), and a big change to the crit schedule too. Check it out here. Remember, if you want to race (and you DO want to race), you need a UCI race licence. You don’t have to race Tim Woodcock or Dave Pitcher to qualify, you just have to shell out $105 and you can race to your heart’s content from April to November. Why do all this training just so you can make it to the top of the overpass before your riding buddies? If you’re going to kick someone’s ass, make it count.

And finally, the Hardmen of the FGBC must be wrapping up Sloth Cross right about now. This is race #4 in the Nordic Cross Series, which has included Gluttons Cross, Greed Cross and Pride Cross. Sloth Cross is a 24 hour race that gets its name from the ability to replace laps of the bike course with hours of sitting on the couch watching Clint Eastwood movies and eating chips. Good times.

Who says nothing exciting happens in the winter in Winnipeg?

Oh, and 3 weeks to Arizona. Yessssss.