Every person at a World Cup see's the events unfold in a different way. Long time friend of the site and Fusion Mechanic Simon Adams gives a little roundup of their travels so far. I will just leave out the photo he took of me sh*tfaced….
Here’s a bit of an insight to being a mechanic on the world cup circuit. It’s a blur of caffeine fuelled late nights and early mornings, stressed bike prepping, sitting on planes and partying. The season started for us in Vigo Spain. This was the first big event of the year and the first event all the team had been together. As usual the riders turned up with their new bikes and a whole load of requests for part changes tweaking etc etc. As is always the way some of the sponsor’s parts hadn’t yet arrived and we still didn’t have any kind of tent’s ready for the event. This made the first few days really hectic and I spent a couple of very long days and very late nights getting all the bikes ready for practice. Unfortunately I missed the big party due to the previously mentioned late nights wheel building but I saw some very hung over looking riders on the flight the next day.
Next event was Champery Switzerland. Things had improved big time for me by then. I had a tent, table and all the tools I could possibly need. Thanks to Jochen at Pedros in Germany for sorting this out. The track was best described as epic. Nobody had seen anything like it before. It was steep, steep, and steep for nearly 5 minutes of constant breaking over roots and rocks. At the end of each practice run everyone was just comparing how many times he or she had crashed on the way down. Thankfully for me apart from a few wheel builds and a couple of new cables everything worked very well. The new Fusion’s we are using are amazing bikes and all the riders are getting along with them just great. After the race Champery was a bit quiet to say the least and in an effort to get the party started I introduced the world cup circuit to Jaeger Bombs. Which is a half empty beer which you then drop a shot glass of Jagermiester into and down it in one. About 2am I was wishing I hadn’t by 10am I was really wishing I hadn’t.
Next up was the legendary Mont St Anne. I travelled with a reduced team of Jenna, Florent and James. Racing went well on the awesome track. For me it was mainly wheel building duty all weekend. The track is a real bike destroyer and I think we went through 4 rims and I rebuilt 6 wheels from 3 riders over three days. At this event it is all about the party though. It stared as soon as 4X did and went on all night with loads of bands, DJ’s and lots of alcohol. I peaked quite early and went home at about 2 am while the rest of the team where a bit more hard-core and stayed out until daybreak. Next morning was all about the car not starting we waited for about 3 hours trying to get it going until eventually I had to give in and look for another way to the airport. After asking just about everything hung over DH pro that was around I managed to get a lift with the Nissan VIP’s to Quebec and then a bus to the airport in Montreal. I just made it just in time for the flight.
Finally we arrived in Schladming which is one of my favourite events of the year. They have everything pretty sorted and best of all the track is fantastic. By this point we where cooking on gas and had a display car from SsangYong two large ez-ups joined together and several flags and banners to makes us look cool. First Job for me was to build up two new prototype frames for the riders. Fusion have listened to our feedback from the first three races and produced two new frames based open our recommendations. They are awesome to work with and really want to create the best products they can. A very late night later and we had two very special bikes ready for testing. The party is always one of the highlights of the weekend and Schladming didn’t disappoint. We hooked up with the Kiwi girls for a de-briefing session with the ever-popular Jaegermiester then hit the Tex Mex bar in town. Or should I say the text mex bar hit us. It was an awesome night of Jaeger Bombs, Tequila and Desperado. I finally staggered into bed at 3 am knowing that I had to be up at 6 to get my flight. Lets just say flying hung over is a very bad idea.
I am actually going to ride my bike a bit over the next few weeks with a trip to the Megavlanche and then a week pinning it all over the Alps. Can’t wait to get back to Chamonix, Les Arcs also hoping to get to Verbier for a couple of days. Then it’s on to Fort bill and Maribor.