Andy McKay

Jul 14, 2022

Valley Fondo, Cowichan Crusher and Penticton Fondo

Trips 2022 👉 GearTrips

Some of the bike races I did this year, so far

Valley Fondo

I registered for the this Fondo in 2020 so my registration was a roll-over from that.

Normally this starts in the middle of Fort Langley, but this time it started in a muddy field nearby.

I found this race tough for a few reasons:

  • I forgot to take pills that control my heart rate and so had to stop a couple of times
  • My back started to hurt really early in the race and didn’t get better
  • I got some good drafts, but struggled on hills and lost groups

Overall, I find the race goes around nice parts of the valley. But I struggled to get a real sense of where I was, where I was going and so on. It just felt like I was cycling around in circles (I was). I was extremely glad that this race finished quite short.

I’d probably not do this race again.

Cowichan Crusher

I registered for this at the last minute and made it into a camping trip and did 120km the day before to get there. Most of the information is over in this post. It’s nice to do a gravel race for a change and I wasn’t aiming for anything good here, just to have fun.

Okanagan Fondo

Another hold over from 2020, this is my second time doing this Fondo. It happens to fall the day after my birthday and I really enjoy the Okanagan. After my experience in the Valley Fondo and my complete lack of cycling with Steed this year, I expected to go into this one and struggle.

It turns out I didn’t struggle this time. My back didn’t hurt until about 140km or so, usual for a long bike ride. My heart stayed under control and the weather was good. All the way south I was able to get into good groups and share pulling with some good drafts.

I was saving some energy for the hill at 110km, because that totally destroyed me last time and after that I was spent. Not so this time, it was tough, but nowhere as near as bad as I remembered. It did cause my average speed to drop below 32km/h, but as I approached and passed the observatory, I was able to start increasing my average speed above 30km a bit.

At this point I started realising I could land this in under 5 hours, at an average pace over 30km/h… and I did hitting PRs on most of the route.

This one felt good and I’d love to come back and do it again.