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Junior National Champion Keegan Swenson's Blog – World Championships

Posted by: Shannon Boffeli |October 22, 2012 12:58 AM

Junior National Champion Keegan Swenson’s Blog – World Championships


After a long day of travel I had made it to Stuttgart, Germany to begin my trip for Worlds, in Saafelden, Austria. I headed over there a little early so I could do the XC race in Albstadt to help prepare for worlds the following weekend, as well as just get used to the 8 hour time change. On Friday we went to Eurobike for a few hours which was pretty cool, I could not believe how huge it was, and how big the bicycle industry really is! Crazzy!

Saturday morning Marco and I headed to Albstadt to get a lap on the course before the race. It was mess. It was ridiculously muddy! I did one lap and then decided to change tires,  they did a little but the mud was so thick I don’t think it even mattered. I had the whole course pretty much dialed except one slippery, muddy death shoot. While pre riding I slapped the hay at the bottom…So I decided I was just going to run/slide/walk down it during the race. I didn’t feel like breaking myself the week before worlds. After an early wakeup and plenty of espresso I was ready to race. I got myself warmed up and then lined up at the start. It started off fast as always, but I was able to make my way to the front, I stay there till the top of the climb then lost a few spots on the DH. I was riding the struggle bus, that’s for sure. I also didn’t feel so hot on the climbs so I decided just to ride the rest of the race and be careful not to kill myself. I think I ended up around 16th in the end. My poor Flash was pretty beat after all the mud and power washing…thank you Giac for making it race ready again!!

 After a fun day of shredding awesome trails in Stuttgart, we headed off the Austria the next day. It was a little bit of a drive, about 4 hours. I was able to get a few laps on the course after we arrived. I liked it. Really fast with some short steep descents. Which happened to be quite slippery when wet..

Thursday I raced the team relay with my 3 teammates Russell, Lea and Todd. I went second. It was HARD! Just one lap as fast as you could do it. The death shoot was really slippery as well, I decided just to run down it and be safe. In the end we were 7th, pretty solid.

Friday morning I went out for a little spin on the course and few openers for XC the next day. The course was drying out which made the slippery section only a little slippery and I was able to ride it about half the time, the other half hitting the pads at bottom. 

RACEDAY! I jumped on the rollers for a while and got the legs going then headed over for the start. The gun went off and missed my pedal… twice in a row…I think I was just nervous and jumped to hard, thus missing my pedal. I don’t know where I was, about mid pack maybe? So I had a go all out on my start loop to get into the top 10. Once up there I just tried to ride smart and slowly made my way up to the front. After some chasing, I caught the French guy in 5thright after the feed zone and attacked him on the road climb. I was able to get a small gap and hold it off to the finish! Well that’s it, season is pretty much done! Way stoked to be able to finish it off in a good way. Congrats to Anton for the win, you are an animal. Now time to move on to U23!!

Oh and the next day I did the Sprint Eliminator, which was a 500m loop all downtown. It was a fun track, with a bunch of stairs and turns.  I gave it all I had for about 2min but it wasn’t enough. I was ELIMINATED! Next year….it was a lot of fun though. Can’t wait to do more of them next season.

Thank you to my parents, coach, Cannondale Factory Racing, USA Cycling and everyone else that helped me this season! It was a good one.  Now lets race some cross! 

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