August 7, 2005 – Since the summer of 2001, many things have happened cycling wise in Atlantic Canada. An international size velodrome was built (Caisse populaire Dieppe VÃ©lodrome), Nationals were held at two occasions (2001 for Road, 2004 for Cyclo-cross), a National Cycling Centre was built and our athletes have been on a constant progression curve. It is now to the point where it is a regular item to have Atlantic riders being part of the National team at Worlds (this year, it was recently announced that Christian Meier, Matt Hadley, Ian McAvity, and Jamie Lamb (as a reserved) will represent us at road and mountain bike worlds a little later this season).
Yesterday, this hard work and dedication was greatly rewarded has no less then three out of four Atlantic provinces picked cyclist to carry the provincial flag at the Canada Games’ opening ceremonies. Indeed, Nova Scotia chose Mountain Biker Kate Scallion (who participated at Worlds in 2001), New Brunswick picked 2001 National Road Champion Julie BÃ©langer, while Newfoundland stopped its choice on Zach Garland who represented Canada last year.
Personally, I think this is a great honour for Atlantic cycling, to everyone involved, the provincial organisations, the volunteers, the decision makers, the coaches, the sponsors, the supporters, and the governments (at all levels). It prouves we are definitely on the right track and the road is nothing but over.
Tomorrow, the cyclists will take on the mountain bike course where Jamie Lamb and Ian MacAvity will no doubt lead to troops. Tuesday, it’ll be time for the individual effort with the time trial where riders like Ryan Belliveau and Meghan Read could shine. After a day off, things will get back into action on Thursday with the road race and then the criterium on Friday. These two events will favour the Julie BÃ©langer, Zach Garland, Justin St-Onge, Max Keeler, ValÃ©rie Violette and many others.
To follow results throughout the week, click on http://www.regina2005.ca/.