#racinglife: Photo/Vid shoot Day #2
5:30 am: The 2nd of 4 days dedicated to photo and video shoots began as riders arrived in the lamp lit parking lot of the Homewood Suites in Tucson. They were visibly cold as they wheeled their Thule Crossover suitcases towards the team vehicles. I scanned them as they approached, making sure everyone was wearing their Silber casual jackets, hats and Specialized casual shoes. There was none of the usual banter, just hunched shoulders and hands in pockets as they rocked side to side to stay warm. Another day; another shoot. Let’s call it #racinglife, or everyone just pitching in to build the platform we call “Silber Pro Cycling.”
5:45 am: Silber’s head soigneur, Lani Galyer, parked the team van and riders piled in. Their suitcases were loaded with the clothing we had prescribed for the day. A Jamis road and TT bike were racked on the race car. Our photographer, Brian Hodes, and videographer, Leo Zuckerman, had already loaded their equipment in the rental van. As we pulled out of the parking lot, I cranked the heat.
Heading to the Pima Air and Space Museum, I wondered how our neo-pros were taking in the experience of working with a professional photographer and videographer over 4 days. On one level, they were easily rolling with the punches, and it really wasn’t that hard. They had been in Tucson for about a week. All their travel logistics were handled by Michelle Paiement. Riders were picked up by staff at the airport and driven to the Homewood Suites. The hotel’s Director of Sales, Donna Lominac, arranged for Lani to use a meeting room for the distribution of Thule suitcases spilling over with Giordana Clothing, POC helmets and glasses, Doc’s skin care products, veloToze shoe covers, Specialized race and casual shoes, Grupetto socks and coffee and casual clothes provided by our supporter/Ironman Brahm Rosenberg, (the owner of Adorables and Novelti clothing), Riders were also given their Jamis road and TT bikes with Easton wheels, power meters and cockpits. Their choice of Fizik saddles were already installed by our mechanics.
Our neo-pros were at least somewhat used to this part of #racinglife: receiving soft goods and equipment, then dialing in bike fit and any clothing issues. Some had represented Canada at the World Championships and all came from some of the best amateur teams in the country. Surely most had experienced team photo shoots, but 4 days with a professional photographer and videographer? Were they soaking in how their relationship to the sport was expanding?
6:15 am: We arrived at Pima early and as the gates to the museum grounds opened Meghan Marum, the museum’s Director of Communications, drove up in a golf cart to greet us. She was shivering.
Brian, Leo and I had met Meghan two days earlier during our pre-scouting of the museum grounds. She arranged for our vehicles to be allowed on the immense site to facilitate the movement of riders and equipment between locations. As we passed through the gates however, Brian took charge and told riders what to wear while directing everyone to the first location. Dawn was already yawning across the expansive sky so Brian was racing the movement of the planet. He kept looking upward as the riders changed and got organized. Brian wanted cloud cover to diffuse the morning light and so far, he was getting his wish. In the meantime, Leo jumped out of the van with his assistant, Pasha and they were already shooting video of the riders lining up for the first team pic.
6:30 am: The light was right and everything was falling into place, including the amateur pics for this blog. I knew ahead of time we wanted to give a behind the scenes window onto the team but also the #racinglife of young, aspiring racers as they travel the continent doing what they love to do: ride and race their bikes. I mean it’s not a bad way to meet people and see the world, if you’re supported well enough to perform at your best.
More than training and racing, part of the sport our racers love includes long days of work on behalf of the team and our partners. In this case, riders started at 5:30 am in the dark and cold only to end in the early afternoon in time for a training ride straight from the museum. On other days, the racers spent the day doing multiple takes on a mountain side or make clothing changes mid-ride through a beautiful stretch of road. Again, don’t get me wrong. It’s not hard and sometimes you see locations you might otherwise miss, like the incredilbe Pima Air and Space Museum. But the hours do need to be calculated into your training and recovery. It’s in your contract and it’s part of your journey through the sport. What’s that oft quoted phrase? Something like “train, recover, repeat”? And their must be a racing version of it. Anyway, it only makes sense to me if you think of “training” and “racing” as including so much work done off the bike–or what we would broadly hashtag #racinglife