2019 Kicks Off With Fat Bike Festival At Albion Hills
Team riders Robert Bateman and Sam Meyboom competed hard at race #2 of the 45NRTH Ontario Fat Bike Series. Sam was riding a Norco Ithaqua 2 and Robert was aboard his full XTR Rocky Mountain Suzi Q Carbon 90. Both riders rode through icy and cold conditions. Veteran racer Rob was able to pull off a top 10 overall and just 20 seconds off the podium in the Masters category. Next race goes January 26th at Georgian Nordic. See full calendar here. Get out and enjoy what Ontario winters have to offer!
Robert Gibbs 1976 - 2019
Bateman's Racing Team is dedicating it's 2019 Race Season to the memory of Robert Gibbs, a beloved friend and colleague who left us too soon.
2018 Team Bateman's Racing
MTB, Enduro, CX & Road
Spring Epic 8 Hour at Mansfield
Bateman's wins the 6 person catagory
MTB O-Cup #1 Woodnewton
A record 31 team members raced in the season's first O-Cup.
Congratulations to all for great racing, here are our podium finishers
Carl De Groote - 1st Squirt Boys
Theo De Groote - 2nd MiniMe Boys
Tessa Brinklow - 2nd Senior Expert Women
Jess Beardsall - 3rd Senior Expert Women
Sam Meyboom's Bronze Medal Race Report
XCMarathon - Dufferin Forest, April 2018
In Sam's words...
So today was the opening round of the XC Marathon race series up at Dufferin County Forest. I have done plenty of MTB races but I've never done a marathon race so I was a tad nervous. On top of that the weather was not your average mountain bike race weather. It was freezing rain/snowing all morning and only started coming down harder as the day went on.
The course itself got shortened from a 25km lap to 17km. So racing the full marathon today was two laps of that course, and it wasn't the distance that made the race so brutally difficult today; it was the freezing rain and snow. As it fell on the ground it didn't freeze and become slick but it became almost sand like but finer. There was no dirt to dig into and grip, only 4 or 5 inches of this weird sand like powdery snow/frozen rain that your tires would slip on/through making climbing next to impossible. As icing on the cake, a lot of the time there was mud underneath the anti-grip powder which would suck up any kind of speed you would generate.
Onto the race itself. I had a solid first lap, near the front of the pack and feeling strong. Near the end of the lap I was riding in a group of 4 or 5 people. On one of the 180 degree corners the rider in front of me went down and I took the opportunity to go around him and start trying to build a lead. I slowly started building it over the next lap but with 10km or so left I was feeling absolutely gassed and unable to drink from my bottle because mother nature had decided to freeze the mouthpiece. Trudging on I finished those last 10km only loosing 1 spot in the overall. Finishing just shy of 3 hours later I crossed the finish line 16th overall and 3rd in my category.
I hope that next weekend at the Mansfield O-Cup the weather will be a little bit more forgiving!
Steaming Nostril - Mitch Harris recounts a nasty day
I rode Steaming Nostril for the first time last year, so I was excited to build on that experience--and some improved fitness over the winter--to put in a solid effort to begin the 2018 season.
The beginning of the race is defined by two tricky corners—a sharp, slippery, downhill right-hander on to the first gravel section, and then another turn onto a narrow wood bridge to exit the section. I started in the 2nd wave last year, so I was expecting things to be a little more intense in the wave 1 start, and I was right—it kicked-off like a cross race, with 10-minute sprint towards the entrance to that first gravel section.
There’s not much room for passing, so when I found myself on Chris Barson’s wheel (who went on to a very impressive 12th place finish), I just tried to hang on for dear life and let him navigate through the slush and mud. A few minutes later, I glanced down at my Garmin to confirm what my legs were telling me: I was riding WAY too far into the red so early in the race, and by the time I caught my breath, Chris was long gone and 10-12 more riders came past me.
As we exited the first rail section, a large group formed as we rode along King St through downtown St Jacobs. The pace here was still very fast—with Grant doing more than his fair share of the pulling at the front of our group of about 25 riders. I just tried to hang on to the group after overextending myself at the beginning.
Next up was the rail trail through Linwood. The morning frost turned to slush and mud, and this was a brutal, energy-sucking slog with some treacherous pot hole and ruts. Here Grant and I caught up to Connor (for a moment,at least) after he dropped his chain and lost contact with the lead group.
Connor passed us again near the end of this trail, and after we got back on the road, the next 30 km of the race is pretty much a blur to me—it just felt like one endless, flat and windy stretch of dirt road with the occasional horse and buggy. I lost Grant somewhere along this stretch and caught up to a group of 4 of 5 other riders and worked well together until the farmer’s field, which was the defining feature of the 2nd half of the race.
The mud in this field was deep, sticky and un-ridable. So much frozen mud and horse shit had accumulated around my linear-pull brakes that both wheels locked up and I had to carry my bike through the rest of the field. I stopped for awhile and made a futile effort to clear it. I was pretty demoralized at this point. Slamming my bike against the ground didn’t help clear the mud either, and soon all the riders I worked so hard to drop on the road caught back up and passed me in the middle of the field, but I got my head together and managed to ride the 2 tricky downhill mud sections without brakes, so that helped get my spirits back up.
The last memorable part of the race was a steep, and very muddy 50 foot “climb up”. I could tell by all the groaning around me that I wasn’t the only rider cramping up from dehydration, as our bottles all froze over an hour before.
I lost a few more positions on the last 5 km stretch but I was relieved just to get my bike rolling again.
Looking back on it now, I’m happy with how the race went. Also, this was my first time racing with a power meter, so it was cool to get a more objective assessment on how I performed. I set a few PBs, and this was a great preparation for P2A. Given the conditions, I’m sure every rider dealt with mechanical issues of some kind. Riding in ski gloves an insulated waterproof cycling boots made this experience bearable, but with that said, I don’t think I’ll be pre-registering for this race again next year.
Annie K Nano receives her trophy for winning the Hell of the North
Paris to Ancaster 25th Anniversary
24 Hour at Albion Hills - Here is our base camp where 60 people spread over 5 teams raced through the night until a thunderstorm stopped us at 10 am.
Having fun at the Steve Bauer Classic
Road Racing O-Cup Hawkesville
2016 Cyclocross O-Cup Racing Season
Ryan Rutherford had a great cyclocross season racing in the highly competitive Elite category. His MTB handling skills help him compete among Ontario's best CX racers, and brought him to the top step of the podium as the Ontario Master A Provincial Champion.
Not only is Ryan a fierce competitor - he also volunteers at Midweek Cycling Club's Tuesday Night Cyclo-cross series that runs September to November every year in Toronto.
Review: Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt BC Edition
Bateman's Team rider Ryan Rutherford recounts riding the Sky to Sky Corridor:
I recently spent a week in the Sky to Sky Corridor riding the Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt BC Edition. The bike had a basic suspension tune which I knew I had to dial in.
The first run in Whistler was B-line a run with some slower banked corners and small table tops. The ride 9 suspension adjustment made it easy to dial in the geometry. I placed it into the slackest setting and increased 5 PSI.
As for the front suspension, the Rock Shox Pike is designed for aggressive trail riding and I was amazed how well it absorbed the small bumps and the larger big hit compressions. A token was added to the air side to help the suspension ramp up near the bottom of the compression without losing small bump.
The second lap was again B-line. The Thunderbolt was a completely different bike. It railed every corner and for those of you who know my riding style, I took every inside line and drifted to the outside. As the trip went on we spent the mornings riding Squamish, Whistler West Side, the Black-comb trails and we rode the bike park in the evenings.
The trail riding starts off with climbing anywhere from 45-90 minutes and you were then rewarded with a descent. Mostly wild steep rock rolls and loose loamy shoots. Whistler's bike park has a large variety of trails to choose from depending on riding ability.
After getting comfortable it was time to see what this bike can really do on jumping trails. We started with Crank It Up to Heart of Darkness, a good warm up run. Before we knew it we were sending Freight Train, Dirt Merchant and A-line. These jumps are big 40+ foot table tops. I was continually amazed that a 26 pound XC trail bike was capable of handling most trails I was able to ride down.
This trip was a real eye opener for myself to make mountain biking fun again and not just a training ride. There is something amazing about riding for hours with people you don't know and sharing stories over a few to many beers.
Paris to Ancaster 2016
One of the team's favourite races of the year, we had dry conditions so it was a fast race! With three Bateman's riders in the top 200 it was a great start to the year.
Race report from Bernhard Isopp [Wave 1]:
"Robert, Hinkel, and I did a good job of getting up as close as possible to the front of the start corral. At the gun I charged up the hill and got onto the gravel road pretty close to the front of the pack. I moved up the group even more as we came down the gravel hill and entered the rail trail along with Hinkel in probably the top 5.
Race report from Bateman's staff James Keezer [Elite wave]:
"The Elite wave start was extremely fast and I made it to the rail trail in maybe the top 30. It was very difficult to move up as the paceline rotation was only in the top 10 people or so.
Team Bateman’s Featured Athlete for Spring 2016 is Hinkel Yeung!
New to Team Bateman’s in 2016, Hinkel brings a lot of race experience and smarts to the team.
Last year, Hinkel placed 1st at the Vaughan CX Challenge, 4th at the Good Friday Road Race and got many other top 10 results in cyclocross and road races. In 2016 he will be working with teammates Connor and Bernty in Cat 3 on the road, and looking for another successful cyclocross season in the fall.
Always willing to lend a helping hand (in races and off the bike) - Hinkel has shown he is the ideal teammate.
Steaming Nostril 2016
The 2016 edition of Steaming Nostril was about 10 degrees colder than the previous year with temperatures around -5°c. Snow had fallen overnight making the dirt roads wet enough to cause a spray covering our faces, butts and bikes and then freezing solid!
In case you weren't dirty enough from the dirt sections, a new farm section was added just before the 60km mark - likely already exhausted, you now had a downhill "mud chute", two creek crossings and a slippery wall of mud that seemed to tower over 50 feet.
The team had 11 riders in the main event and one rider in the 38km "Runny Nose" race.
It was a gruelling day to be on the bike, so congrats to all for finishing! Special congrats to Nicola for finishing 5th in her age category. Overall results: James K. (10), Andrew M. (15), Hinkel Y. (37), Bernty I. (52), Rob B. (56), Josh V. (67), Grant E. (112), Andrew F. (113), Sean S. (127), Mike S. (135), Nicola K. (175).
See you on the MTB, CX and Road O-cup circuit in 2017!
Tour of Pelham 2017
Eager to test my legs after a winter inside the Spin Shack, the Tour of Pelham was the perfect way to kick off the season. Bateman's always has a strong contingent at these types of mud-filled affairs, and the ToP attracted the likes of Grant, Mike, Sean, Nicola, Leo, Andrew M, Andrew F, Sean, Valina and other shack-pack members.
The weather was perfect and most riders were showing some skin by the time the race started at 11am. With the previous year's top finishers at the front, the race started out like most races do, perhaps made especially hectic by the fact that only racing for 2 hours meant you could really hammer!
The first bottleneck came as the group entered a reservoir area through a single file gate, which was a hectic scramble for everyone except course the experts and last year's winner, Nathan Chown, who cleanly rode through first and proceeded to attack, creating the splits that defined the finishing results. The reservoir and the gravel maintenance roads that followed were littered with deep pot-holes filled with standing water, making it difficult to come around anyone before the entrance into the first single track section.
At this point I was sitting just out of a top 10 position and fortunately found myself on the wheel of one of the local team's (CF) rider, who knew the trail well. Following his line, the two of us created a gap on the group behind before hitting a section of almost unrideable thick mud, which for those doing the long course was completely unrideable the second* time through. The police and volunteers stationed at each road crossing did their best to direct riders from trails and onto paved roads, and then back onto a hilly cow-field, where a cyclocross style labyrinth turned out to be one of the most gruelling and tiring sections of the race.
Turning back onto the hilly pavement, the members of my group started to attack and I eventually got dropped only a few kilometers before re-entering the trail section, where I had hoped to have a similar advantage as I did the 1st time (please see earlier, re *mud). Exiting the trail and onto the reservoir pathways, I embarrassingly thought I had taken a wrong turn and began to backtrack until I came upon a rider heading the opposite direction, and quickly turned around to catch back up.
The last 8km of the course were on paved roads, and with no riders visible ahead or behind us, there was little motivation to push the pace above threshold, which made for a somewhat easy run in to the finish, taking 18th place.
You could not have chosen a more deserving winner (or nicer guy) than Jacques Cormier, who according to 2nd place finisher Graham Rivers 'didn't skip a pull the entire race, and still managed to edge him out in the sprint'. With Erik Box coming in 3rd, and Andrew Merrick narrowly missing the long-course podium in 4th place, the top Bateman's rider of the day was Nicola who took 2nd in the short course, women's category.
My biggest take aways from this race, other than an pound of mud, was that my training during the winter has established a decent base, and that I'm ready to dial in my fitness for the fast approaching road season. Next up is Steaming Nostril in St. Jacobs, hosted by Cycle Waterloo, which has fewer technical sections and is more of a gravel road race, which will tip the advantage towards fitness and power. Overall the ToP was a fantastic event blessed by beautiful weather, and it would not have been possible without Jeff Moote and the rest of the 905Cycling team. Can't wait for next year!