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Camp Recap: BC Cross Country Mountain Bike Team at Bear Mountain

The BC Provincial Mountain Bike Team gathered at Bear Mountain Resort in Victoria, BC over the weekend of March 17-18 for its first training camp heading into the season. With the first Canada Cup race taking place at Bear Mountain on March 31, 2018 this was a great opportunity to pre-ride and work on fundamental skills.

Regional coaches Adam Walker and Evan Guthrie coached 14 athletes throughout the weekend over three sessions on the bike. There were also four guest speakers that delivered presentations to the athletes.

Here is a breakdown of the weekend.

Day 1: After a morning ‘meet & greet’ the group headed out for a 2-hour ride.  It started with a lap of the Canada Cup course before working on cornering. Those skills were moved over to the pump track where riders spent time chasing each other down while the coaches tried not to get dropped. A quick break for lunch before we heard from the first speaker of the day. Danelle Kabush highlighted the importance of mental performance and how it needs to be trained just like physical training.

After Danelle’s talk, there was a 2-hour afternoon session on the mountain bikes where athletes worked on line selection and putting the skills they learned in the morning to practice. After this session riders changed, ate, and moved into another speaker session from Ashley Armstrong on nutrition. Ashley covered a variety of topics and left the athletes with a great understanding of how to fuel their bodies in training, competition and during rest periods. This was an interactive talk where the athletes participated in meal planning and training/racing nutritional needs.

Jeff Ain was the final speaker of the day and talked to the athletes about progressing through the Grassroots system, into the Provincial system, and then the National system of Junior, U23, and Senior levels. Jeff is the coach of Canada’s Next Gen mountain bike program. It was an inspiring talk for the athletes to see how you can progress through the sport and what opportunities are offered at different levels.  Jeff outlined some great skills, knowledge, and pillars from athletes he has seen progress to the top of the sport. After this talk, the athletes gathered at Coach Adam’s house for a team dinner.

Provincial team member, Cam McCallum had this to say about the camp, “I had a lot of fun this weekend at the CBC camp! My favourite parts were working on the line choices on course and training together with so many fast athletes. I learned the most from the coaches on working on my race starts, positioning, and stance. This camp has made me feel very ready for the race season. The most fun I had was just hanging out with all the other racers I haven’t seen all winter.”

Day 2: Riders showed up at 9:30am for another speaker and demonstration session from Ali Boudewyn on recovery. Athletes were shown warm-up exercises and stretches, as well as post-workout recovery stretches and foam rolling techniques. After this session, everyone was warmed up, rolled out, and eager to get riding on another beautiful spring day. A 3-hour ride was planned with the first hour focused on linking all the skills from day one into a lap on the Canada Cup course. A few short race starts and short track loops were completed before heading out for a fun trail ride to end the weekend.

We’re looking forward to seeing all the athletes get the season underway on March 31st at Bear Mountain.