We had a film crew and a camera crew hired by the Discovery channel to get some footage/photos and short interviews that they could use later on. It is rare that we have media here but usually have one or two TV or Magazines that want to get something from this camp. Most of the media is at the January camp. Today they followed us, then leap ahead and shoot, get back in the van and catch up to us to go past and film some more. They would pass us every 20 minutes or so to film/shoot us.
We followed today’s training ride in two of our four Subaru’s on loan from a local dealer. A deal we have with Subaru of America through the local dealerships. Today was a 4 hour cruise around south east Austin. A long ride by Austin camp standards. Like many of “his” rides here, this one crossed a few streams that proliferate the area here. The first stream crossing was not too bad. The second one was more of a challenge and almost up to the bottom bracket. Two riders were a bit nervous on the second crossing so they put their bikes in my car. After the crossing, they got out and continued.
The third crossing was to be the deepest of the day. I guess the film/photo crew knew the area and shot past us to get footage/photos of us crossing the third stream crossing. This one was deep. The riders instantly got nervous as it was higher than their wheel axles. The same two riders tried to get in my car and have me take them across. But I could not as the TV/film van was blocking the road sitting just 5 feet past the stream and the road was really narrow. Just (maybe) enough for two cars to pass each other but at a cautious speed as to not run each other off the road.
They had blocked the road for another reason actually. They water was deep and COLD. So deep and so cold so as the van crossed the stream (river?) the engine block cracked from the cold water. That’s how deep it was. Lance came back over the water to report that the van was destroyed. He said there was “pieces of the engine” on the road. Chunks of engine block cracked and fell off and oil was all over the place.
We were glad the TV/film crew went first as we might have tried to go across unknowingly.
Lance gave us directions to go the long way around and rejoin them later. Johan looks to me as Lance tells us how to meet them and says “you’re from here, so show us how to get to the meeting point.” I did not want to tell him I did not know the area so I just tried to remember the points Lance had laid out for us and get there as best as possible. We were 5 or 6 minutes down the road and Lance called Johan to tell him “revised directions” but the cell signal was bad and Johan could not get the message. So, I had to figure it out. I just drove by the seat of my pants. I had to try. Not trying would mean not being able to meet the team again and we had to. No question about it. So I just drove by gut feeling and low and behold we popped out behind them about 12 or so minutes later. Johan gives me the thumbs up for a good job. I just thought to myself, that I was only guessing the way to meet them by “going sort of towards them” via “general directions” like north, south, east, west instincts.
The film/photo crew showed up at the hotel about 2 hours after we finished our ride. I hope the gut Full coverage on their rental van.