Of Aqua Velva men, amazing comebacks and the big picture
Something About An Aqua Velva Men: These guys look like they were pulled out of an old Aqua Velva ad, but it’s national rowing team members Will Crothers (left) and Rob Gibson doing that Movember thing as it’s about to mercifully come to a close. Thanks (I think) to their teammate Kevin Light for the retro photo.
Amazing Athlete: Canadian wheelchair racing legend Chantal Petitclerc is very familiar with Dutch athlete Monique van der Vorst, who has come back from paralysis to sign a contract last week to race bikes professionally for Rabobank.
“I know Monique and actually have raced with her in the Handbike!” said Petitclerc in an email from Las Vegas. “She is an amazing athlete, trains like crazy. and her recovery was just amazing. I dont know the detail, like, she was paraplegic but not ‘complete’ break of her spinal cord. so, amazing but not miraculous!!!! What the most amazing is the hard work she does and the training!!!”
There was news out of Athletics Canada on Monday about Petitclerc -- she’s joining UK Athletics as a coach under her former coach Peter Eriksson. It's a shame we didn't have a similar post for her here. Also signing with the Brits earlier in this Olympic cycle were coaches Derek Evely and Kevin Tyler, a significant brain drain for Canada.
Jan the Man: Big props to Canadian downhiller Jan Hudec for his fourth-place finish in the Super-G on Sunday at Lake Louise.
It almost seems as if Hudec’s knees are being held together by paper clips at this point, given the amount of surgeries he’s had.
But the guy’s a cagey and gutsy competitor, a true racer, and he’s able to accomplish results like that despite having to sit out some training runs in order to nurse those battered knees along.
It definitely looks like he’s got some left in the tank.
Sitting This One Out: Sometimes you have to look at the big picture.
World downhill champion Erik Guay is doing that this year in re-tooling his body for the long haul with trainer Scott Livingston in Montreal – they did things in the off-season that focused on fixing his back woes rather than winning races (though he was 6th Sunday).
Now comes news from the Canadian skeleton team that Olympic champion Jon Montgomery will sit out this season in order to focus on equipment and sled design. It’s a critical part of their sport and Montgomery is a sharp enough guy to know he’s going nowhere fast without having the best equipment.
His goal is to match Catriona Le May Doan’s feat of being a repeat Olympic champion and this is a smart move. People will remember how he fares at the 2014 Sochi Games, not the World Cups this season.