It’s a beautiful day here at Barton Creek.

That is the greeting all employees give when they answer a phone here at Barton Creek. Very upbeat. I’d say our accommodations are top notch to put it mildly. We normally stay at Hotels. Here we are at a Resort. There are 4 complete 18 hole golf courses, 2 large pools, two small pools, a full gym, indoor running track and more. Nothing like the room I had in France during the Vuelta a Catalunia. A milk crate is bigger than that room. It would be nice to be in places like this all year but we all know that ain’t gonna happen. But is sure is nice to have that Lance guy on the team to give us a little more pull/little more power.
As I got here, Dan (operations manager) tells me we have a room upstairs to use for storage, bike room, work room. I did not like that but that is the way it goes. Usually they are just another hotel room we use only for equipment. Those are small and cramped. Every day I would have had to make 8 trips to get bikes to the training ride start area before the ride and the same amount of trips after I finished my work. A lame, time consuming task to say the least. They are busy here and getting a real separate bike/storage room must be done well in advance. As I was walking around the complex I noticed a cool large tent. Visions of Avila Beach came to mind as I thought we could use that for work/storage. It worked out that we were able to. That eliminated almost an hour of unnecessary trips to the other room.
Also, this year, I have help. Jean-Mark Van den Berghe from Telecom as our new mechanic. I thought I’d move up the ladders even if he was added to our team but since he was a mechanic for telecom for 8 years, I’m guessing I’m number 6 of 6 this year (I was #5 of 5 last year). Damm. But at least I have help here.
The staff here at Barton creek goes out of their way/bends over backwards to help you. That is the norm for here. I get that stereotypical southern hospitality here. They take customer service a notch above everyone else. Wow, I’m spoiled here. The only bummer is a good friend does not work here anymore. Kelley W. worked here last year during our winter/mini camp. Although she had other responsibilities to do, she also asked to help in any needs I might have to make my work better. If she could not help, she would gladly point me to the person who could get what I needed. Kelley…..can you come back to work here even if it is for a couple of days?
Today they did a bit of testing of each rider. We stayed in the tent as each contestant tried their hand at winning the prize of strongman. I don’t know who won. The plus was we (I) did not have to follow the ride in the car. Very tiring even though I don’t do anything. And very boring to say the least. The other plus………….since they rode a stationary trainer for testing, there is no bike washing today.
That is “A beautiful day here at Barton Creek”


Owner of and long time professional race mechanic.