Padova Grand Prix

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Padova Grand Prix

Teolo, Italy

Padova is the province in Italy just outside Venice. The town of Padova lies about a 30 hour from Teolo. The town of Teolo sits atop a hill, that also hosts several TV and radio towers

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The course starts in front of the Hotel Turetta

Thursday, July 23

We pulled into town in early afternoon. First thing we did was get checked in.

which was next to the finish line. By the time we got checked into the hotel it was mid afternoon. I hadn't eaten all day, so my next goal was to get some food. Unfortunately it was after lunch and before dinner. I wasn't sure exactly how far our hotel was from the town center. So we stopped at the first place we saw. While the restaurant was set for dinner, they weren't serving. The proprietor didn't speak much English. I got across to him I wanted to eat, was very hungry. He said there was no grill, but he could make us some ham and cheese sandwiches, We sat outside in the corner, in some shade. And at some of the best ham and cheeze sandwiches I've ever had. Perhaps it was because I was hungry, but I do know the cheese was very fresh. To top it off, he brought out these two huge slices of water melon.

After eating lunch I walked up the course. This is going to a real interesting race. The corners are tighter and closer together than they were last week in Argonay. Later that evening there was a welcoming dinner

Unfortunately it was mainly ham and cheeze!

Friday, July 24

Our hotel was at the bottom of the hill. I arranged for one of the shuttles to take us to the top.

We got a couple of runs in before breaking for lunch.

After a few more runs it was time for the first round of qualifying.

Midway through our qualifying run the timing system stopped working. We finished the qualifying by having them trip the timer manually, when they said the word "go." Apparently someone had ran off the course right at the spot where some of the wires were connected!

After a long hot day on the hill, I enjoyed the cool evening breeze on the balcony of my hotel.

We headed down to the town center. We started the night off with a parade of the nations. We all lined up behind the flag of our country. Then we marched into the arena.

The band returned for another amazing flag twirling display. Short video of some of the twirling.

 

This even is the World Championships for inline. So the presented their winners for last year.

Shortly after I left a game of longboard soccer broke out.

Saturday, July 25

Today was going to follow the same schedule as yesterday. Except that Inline would run both of their qualifying runs. The IIDA race is a time trial only race. So they wanted the maximum practice time, and have both qualifying runs on the same day. The would also run a third time trial for the top eight or so qualifiers. So we ran practice all morning. Again the day was hot, and we kept to the shade as much as possible.

They also had some Gatorade in additon to the water and Pepsi.

During our practice runs, they let us run groups of 8.

Unfortunately this slowed things down somewhat, especially for the lugers as we had to carry our luges through the small opening.

I decided to head into town for lunch.

When I was ready to go back to the top, I jumped in the front seat of one of the vans, and took a nap until the van filled up. I got back to the top while the inline qualifying was still going on.

After we were done, the final inline time trials were run. But it was getting fairly late so I headed in.

Tonight was supposed to be a big event at the town center. But we were starving, and last night we didn't eat till about 10:30! So a couple of us hit the restaurant at my hotel.

Fortunately I wasn't as hungry as I was the night before, because it was almost 11:00 before they let us in to eat! They had set up a hors d'oeuvres

but most people turned in early for the race tomorrow.

Sunday, July 26

We were supposed to start early, even though it was already hot. The cops were ready,

We broke for lunch at noon. The round needed to be closed for two hours. The original schedule was for a three hour lunch break! Because racing was supposed to start at 3:00 it was decided to try and get the warm up run in around 2:30. While we were trying to decide where to go for lunch, the roller club girls delivered lunch to us!

Women's inline started the race.

Women's skateboard 

I hung out at the finish line

 

The awards

Women's Standup:

Kornienko, Hang, Feldbaum

Men's Inline:

Women's Inline:

Standup:

Siegrist, Switzer, Rufli

Street Luge:

Labarthe, Mahdzan, Deltour

Classic Luge:

Deltour, Labarthe, Serek

Women's Classic Luge:

Feldbaum

As soon as the ceremonies were over many people started to pack up to hit the road. It was already late, but I still needed to get my equipment from the top of the hill. By the time I returned to the hotel, I was lucky to get a pizza from the local restaraunt as the kitchen was closed!

Monday, July 27

Most people left last night. Only a handful were left in the morning. Several of us made arrangements to be dropped off at the Venice airport and train station with the organizers. It makes it easy when the organizers will pick you up and drop you off.

While the course was technical and a lot of fun, it was slow. There was one turn that required the standup to kick out of the turn! The ceremonies and the jumbotron were really cool additions. It was exciting to watch the entire race from the finish line. I believe we only had one separate shoulder and Lang's broken foot. If I go again next year, I am going to get a hotel room with air conditioning.