Tour of CA — Stage 5
Julien, Chris and I got up at the but crack of dawn. O-dark hundred as a
friend would say. I was up just before 5 and out to the truck by 5 with
my luggage. Unhook power and water and we were off to Solvang by 5:15.
Ouch. We get to Solvang and I see a great spot to park. The TT is near
our hotel we normally use for our January Solvang camp. That hotel is
only 500 meters from the TT start. We tried to park there but got
denied. So we parked by the Pizza place we frequent during training
camps. The saw us coming and were happy to see us again. I asked them
for power and water. Power to run the compressor to pump tires and water
to MAYBE wash TT bikes after each was done. We washed out follow car
though as it was a solid drive and misty on the way down so if we did
wash it in SLO it would be nasty by the time we got here to the TT.
So, with the truck parked and some caution tape up to save a spot for
the big team bus, we were off to breakfast. It was now 7:00 am and I was
hungry. After breakfast we returned to getting set up. Bikes out, wheels
out. All the spare stuff we would need. We were about an hour into work.
Almost all the bikes were ready. Tires were pumped. Only a few things to
do or change. Soon after we were ready a local cop came by. A guy I
actually recognized from being around the area during training camp. He
knew us and said hello in a nice way but was a bit upset. We were parked
in the wrong place he said. I told him my issues and he told me where we
were supposed to park (inside the Solvang historical Mission area). The
area we were in was to be for the Lifestyle festival and we were taking
up heaps of their space. But by this time the race was getting busy even
though it would not start for a few hours still. And we could not
physically move the truck out of that spot.
When I drove here in the morning, I took the most direct route into
Solvang and drove past some barricades as cops asked if I knew where I
was going. I assured them I did. knew the area very well so I knew where
I wanted to park the truck. But apparently (according to the cop), teams
were supposed to take the “OTHER” highway into town and enter the TT
parking from the other direction. That would have made parking SO MUCH
easier to get into the mission area. But I did not get that memo. So
we stayed parked were we were and had a great spot in hindsight.
After the TT we drove to the hotel only 2Ks or so away tops. I would
wash the TT bikes at the next hotel and since we used the road bikes
only as spares, they were clean and ready for tomorrow’s stage. So when
we got to the hotel and parked and hooked up, we mechanics were done for
the day. So, off to the local coffee house we frequent during January.
Oddly enough I have my own hotel room. I guess everyone on our
team does. I did not ask. Don’t want to confuse anyone and possibly
loose my quiet solo room. I could have looked at the rooming list our
soigneurs provide to see if it was true. But naw!!! I’m lazy and off to
the coffee shop.
Dinner for me was a treat. A friend and I went to a local place to enjoy
some real NON race food. I often get tired of the “race” pasta but even
though, we went to a great pasta place. Garapolo’s if you are ever in
Solvang. Actually it’s in near by Santa Ynez.