Monday, October 17, 2011

2011 International Season Round-Up

I've been asked a few questions since being back in New Zealand so have put together a wrap up of the season, how its been and where I'm heading and all the bits in between - Enjoy. Originally posted on www.roadcycling.co.nz

Best ride/result of the season?

Best result of the season so far was winning the Elite National Tour des Deux-Sevres in France. Took out the individual time trial and then went on to win the overall GC. The season isn't over just yet though with the Tour of Southland just round corner....

Best experience (on or off the bike)?

Apart from the tour win in France, the highlight was going to the local farmers market in Chateaulin every week to buy fresh sea food. Plenty of options and ideas for cooking up a feast for one and a huge range of seasonal fruit and vegetables. You could say my cooking skills have improved out of sight as a result! The trip to the local bakery for a fresh baguette and custard square was also something to look forward to. It's the small things, but I love my food and good coffee. Luckily I had a large amount of Caffe L'affare coffee on hand as the French aren't known for their coffee.

You can check out the other highlights from France on my blog over at www.joecooper.me Well worth a look.

Biggest lesson learnt this season?

With out a bike for two weeks its impossible to carry the form from the NZ summer to the French winter.

Did you achieve your goals for the international season?

Goal #1: was to have fun while also getting results - check
Goal #2: get onto the top step of the podium - check
Goal #3: learn French - fail
Goal #4: train plenty - check
Goal #5: experience French culture - check
Goal #6: pick up sticks -started a little garden instead
Goal #7: find a lady - fail due to already having one
Goal #8: try get a whole body tan - fail
Goal #9 watch lots of internet tv - check
Goal #10: make it home with my sanity intact - check

When are you back in NZ, (if you're not already) and where will you be based?

Arrived back to home town of Wellington or as like like to call it J'ville in early September, but will be based in either Christchurch or J'ville depending on the weather.

What's the thing you like most about coming back to NZ after a season of racing?

• Being able to speak english and have a decent conversation again.
• Hanging out at the old haunts and talking smack
• Taking 2 weeks complete rest from the bike and then hopping on my new Pinarello from Armstrong Sport to resume training

What's the first major Kiwi food addiction you have to quell upon landing?

Couldn't wait to get a decent coffee again... a long Macchiato. And then a whole range of other food addictions...

- Carrot Cake
- Mums home cooking
- Burger fuel
- Burger and beers inc (christchurch)
- Hells pizza
- Whittakers 72% Dark Ghana chocolate
- Cider
- Chicken chips

What are your goals for the NZ summer season of racing?

To get back into shape after a short rest, put some miles in the bank to balance out all the food addictions and pick up some results along the way in preparation for next year where I want to step up another level. The Tour of Southland is always a goal race along with Tour of Wellington (now Tour of Manawatu).

Can you comment on your team or international season for 2012?

Really looking forward to being part of a very strong Mico Protrain team for Tour of Southland and other national races through to the end of the year. Will wait and see what opportunities arise for 2012.

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