Just got back from a warm up ride for tomorrows race. The legs feel good but not really sharp. After a couple weeks of racing I'm sure a bit of that sharpness Tosh and I built motor pacing will come back. I learned a few things on the ride today from fellow CC racer Josh Tarrant. The kermis races are run by the local pubs and are betting races. Most of the time they are rigged too! Sounds a lot like the kerin track races in Japan. On the brightside they are only 8 euros to race and if you turn in your race number after the race you get 5 euros back. Racing for 3 euros (about $4 USD)!!!! Thats great, who cares if it's rigged. Also, apparently each town has their own bike routes. There are painted markers on the roads for routes of varying length that all loop back to the same town. So for me I can follow the "H's" back to Hertsberge. There are also different colors for different routes. Each route may also have a long or short versions too. Today I did the Silver H 35k loop. Pretty neat. The rest of the day I will be hanging out resting up for the race tomorrow. Most of the guys say that if you last 20 minutes in your first kermis you're doing 'ok'. I hope to better than that but we will see. The race is 120k, 16 laps at 7.5k per lap. If you end up 3 minutes behind the leading group they will pull you, much like the crits in the US. But if you are pulled here you still place. So it is possible to be in the money and be pulled, kinda strange.
One last thing. It seems Belgains are really into lawn care. It's amazing every yard looks like a putting green or the STL Botanical Gardens. They take very good care of their lawns, hedges are trimmed to perfection and everything well manicured. The average lawn here looks like some of the best I've seen in STL.
More to come tomorrow.