It's spring in Europe and Burtnik is ready!

Juventus U23 Evan Burtnik is in his second season with Cycling Canada's Team Race Clean.  

After a rest stop in Edmonton over Christmas - including skate skiing and the occasional trainer session at the clubhouse, Evan headed to L'Alqueria De La Comtessa, Spain to train with his trade team.

Evan arrived January 20th, and has been operating from a house just south of Valencia.  

Evan and Team Race Clean have put in many, many . . . MANY kilometres - pedalling the country side, and augmenting road work with tough Lemond trainer sessions. 

2017 Team Race Clean

2017 Team Race Clean

Guys - that cloud's coming in pretty fast!

Guys - that cloud's coming in pretty fast!

Reps up vall d'ebo . . . definite skin eater workout!!

Reps up vall d'ebo . . . definite skin eater workout!!

Training on the cobbles

Training on the cobbles

Now, two months later, Team Race Clean has moved it's hub, locating near Ath, Belgium; Evan is feeling confident, and the lads are ready to take on some key races!

First up was Kattekoers 2017 - the first offering in the UCI U23 Nations Cup. The UCI U23 Nations' Cup is an annual, season-long competition for under-23 male road cyclists.  

Kattekoers is a race rich with history, and has been contested in various forms since 1934. Evan described it as, "a 187 km kick in the teeth"! One thing about road racing - the result sheet doesn't tell the whole story.  Evan's description of the race: 

"60 km in there was a huge crash as soon as we hit the crosswinds. Sean went down, I barely dodged it. Rode echelons for 30 km and eventually got on . . .

Dodged and got caught up in some more crashes . . .

Wasn't feeling that bad heading into the circuits but I'm just not that strong over cobbles, I got thrown around, and I'm just not very smooth . .

So over the kemmelberg I barely make it over with the peloton

Chain dropped at the bottom of the 3rd berg a few km later and got caught between the frame and crank

Had to get off and rip it out and that was my day over

Brutally savage day though"

Kattekoers - Nations Cup 2017

Kattekoers - Nations Cup 2017

Kattekoers - Nations Cup 2017

Kattekoers - Nations Cup 2017

Solid racing.

Solid racing.

For those who know road racing, you're probably appreciating the intensity of Evan's riding.  

Evan is in great spirits, and looking forward to testing himself at Boucle de l'Artois 2017 on April 1st and 2nd.

This is a 3 stage race with 84 and 82 km stages on the first day, followed by the final 159 km stage the next day.  

This french D1 race will be another fantastic chance for Evan and his team to challenge themselves.  

Best of luck to Evan Burtnik!

Posted on March 29, 2017 .