Monday, March 17, 2008

Today's Lesson: Life is Not Fair

One of my mentors has instilled in me that life can lift you up and throw you down just as fast... the strong ones get back up to rise again, the weak take pity on themselves for their misfortunes.

Running a clothing company is hard work. There are always other companies to compete with, other designers that beat you to the market and trends that fall flat just as fast as they are hot. Usually, there is an element of prediction and trend analysis to mitigate the losses or changes in your business when the wave crashes. In cycling: Not so much.

Put this into play: We had a well organized team, whose equipment was working flawlessly, an incredible host house with the Brethen family, we got to the race early, set-up the EZ-UP, everyone was pumped... yet the wave crashed as fast as it rose, and all of the planning could not prepare us for what was in store: Disaster.

The race started out fast and saw Liz, Jane and Flavia working very hard at the front early on. On lap 14, about 30 yards from my communication post on the radio, Liz crashed HARD and most of the pack went down with her and on her. This caused some chaos as Jane and 2 other riders escaped the mele, only to miss the field neutralization and to be pulled from the race mistakenly... when they were actually LEADING THE RACE. In 4 laps we lost almost 50% of our team.

Flavia stepped-up and rode hard to challenge and battle for position. Heather was suffering from asthma issues, and Mary was sick. It was awesome to see Flavia step up and Heather and Mary doing their best. On the start of the 57th Lap, Flavia was in the ideal position, top 10. On the fina corner she was involved in a huge pile-up with most the the Aaron's team, Laura Van Gilder from Cheerwine and some other outstanding women athletes.

photo credit:
Alan Birnbaum

We actually did not have one rider finish. This is what I call "LIFE". It just happened, and the real challenge now is to rise back up and not feel pity for ourselves. The best laid plans, the strongest effort and LIFE did not work out for us this weekend.

This week we'll focus on clothing, new designs for 2008-9, and new products. We'll also work on getting past this week and move onto the next race in great form! Heal fast Flavia and Liz!


Artificial1 = Me. said...

it's bike racing.....happens to them all. If you ain't rubbin you ain't racin ;)

Love how Van Gilder is just sitting there chilling like 'been here done this.'

nothing broken = GREAT news.
Best.....keep looking forward and remember to KICK ASS!

PROMANgirl said...

People people people, thats right its just bike racing, we do put a lot into it, some more than others but 'Life is not fair' when you get hit by a car and never ride again, 'life is not fair' when you get a terminal illness. It was a rough day for you lot but you will get over it. a few bumps and bruises will heal. Feel blessed that we are afforded the opportunities in our lives to be able to participate in something as frivolous as bike racing! we are lucky lucky lucky!
Gratitude rules!luckily for you cats always land on their feet!

Mandy said...

to my sweet soldiers out west: you rock. getting up after the challenges bring you to your knees (or arse); that's a sign of a true champion! and, of course, this is a prominent quality of vanderkittens! vanderkittens learn from lessons taught and come out better than before. yay! what a wonderful fact that the creators of the company have this vision, too!

gwadzilla said...


glad it was not more serious

everyone is back on the bike ready to race another day