The only reason we left Wanaka and New Zealand was the planned family reunion on February 17th on the Big Island in Hawaii. We had planned this in August last year already! 2 weeks of vacation with Isa’s sister and her family as the only fixed point during our year around the world. It took us 3 days to get the from the South of New Zealand. No need to mention that M. & Z. were quite disoriented, confused and cranky for the first few days.
The Big Island is something like Lanzarote at first sight, just bigger. But after a while one discovers that it has multiple climate zone and that it encapsulates all climate and geographies of an entire continent. Deep waters, high mountains, green pasture with huge ranches, lava fields, lush sub-tropical forest, lush English rainy regions, etc…
The best for me was of course to be on THE triathlon Island, the place where the Ironman World championship takes place every year. Not necessary to mention that I assembled my TT-bike on the first day to hit the mythical Queen K. already on the second day! What a feeling to ride on this highway where all the best triathletes in the world have sweated their guts out. I feel very motivated, all the more that I will be competing in the Lavaman Triathlon on March 28th on the very same road. It will be my first race since May 2009.
Apart from Training and Sightseeing, we spend most of the time at the pools of the vacation resort. It is the best family friendly pools I have seen, with small beaches for kids, 4 different water slides for kids and adults, hot pools, pools with Dolphins, protect natural lagoon, etc, etc… amazing. Perfect to spend 2 weeks with the family with 4 young children. The other great thing at the resort is the BBQ place. We have already used it a couple of times to sear delicious american steaks and others treats. Will I lose any weight during this period? I think I have trained 12 hours this week and increased my belly buoy by an inch!
Anyway, that’s part of family meets. You talk, you eat you drink and you start all over again….and you celebrate birthdays! That’s right we took advantage of this reunion to anticipate Zoé’s 3rd birthday…but that is a different story.
Last August, while still walking with a brace on my left knee and 2 crutches, I decided that I would not replace my “feu” hybrid Canyon bike (hybrid = road bike fitted with a tri-bar and 2-3 other accessories to do triathlon) with a new hybrid bike but to indulge in luxury and to buy 2 specific bikes. Reasons are multiple. Change regularly position to keep the body far away from the injury zone. Take the bike that is most adapted to the course. Get an aero position that is a true aero position with a seat post at 75 degrees at least, different cranks, be able to race different race types without having to modify the bike every time, etc, etc..
I wrote in my 19th August 2009 post “Cannondale Hi-Mod Synapse 2010 ordered” that I would wait to be in the US in 2010 to get a cool, small, local US time trial brands. Well, I think I found a cool, small, local time trial brand but not from the US but from New Zealand. I saw this Avanti Chrono 2.0 model 2009 in a shop in Wanaka and eyed it for 2 weeks. The third week I dared to enter the shop to look at the price tag. Upsy Daisy, a bit steep! I start talking to Scott the guy in charge of the Outside Sports cycling shop, he tells me to be ready to get the price down as he want to sell this 2009 model. To make a long story short, I take it for 4 test rides and after changing the length of the stem and made zillions of small adjustments I decide to actually acquire this silent, slippery black stallion together with a slick Grammo Bike Case and a few accessories like a double Profile Design Bottle cage for the seat post.
Why did I buy it? Well, first the size and the geometry is good for me. Second, the components are first class (apart from the 53 Ultegra Crank, which I will change over time). The other components are great, the full carbon Oval aero bar with Dura Ace shifter. The incredible ADT front fork, the Quartz Tektro brake BEHIND the front fork, the all internal cables, the ZERO wheels manufactured by Zipp, the Dura Ace Derailleur. The first time I saw an Avanti bike was in Noosa but I thought it was an Italian brand until I got to New Zealand. I have now done 250km with this racing machine on the Queen K. Highway of the Big Island in Hawaii and I have never been so fast. It must be the bike.