Jumpin’ in the deep end

By James Durand

It was 2007, day four of the seven-day BC Bike Race. I was racing as a team with my buddy Gary and we’d decided to stick with another team for the week to make it more fun.

We exited a trail and had about 500 metres of downhill gravel road before the next bit of single track. We picked up the pace and as we rounded a corner, we came upon a giant cross ditch.

We had a choice to make:

1. Slam on the brakes and skid to a slower pace to avoid being pitched over the bars and sliding down the gravel road on our lips.

2. Pedal as hard as possible and try to bunny hop this huge ditch. Landing it would be awesome, casing it could be the end of the race and most likely a trip to the ER.

This decision had to happen in a split second or chaos would ensue, and clearly there was a safe choice, and a risky choice.

With no communication whatsoever, my partner and I both stood up, pinned it, and launched into the air. We landed safely and rode down the hill far in-front of our buddies, who had both slammed on the brakes and taken the safe option.

In hindsight, I don’t think there was a wrong decision, just different personalities. Some of us avoid risk, and some of us thrive on it.

Apparently this crosses over into my everyday life as well.

Three and a half years ago I decided it would be great to move Swicked and build our dream bike shop. Chenoa said I shouldn’t get ahead of myself … but that’s kind of what I do. It’s how you win right, just ride over your head until you pull off some magic?

Sure, some times it blows up in my face, but that’s the excitement of it all. I’d be bored if I slowed down for every cross ditch.

So, we sold our building and bought a lot in Willow Point, rezoned it, tore down a house, and planned a new bike shop … and planned again …and re-planned …and planned some more.

Eventually, all the risk blew up in my face and no matter how hard I tried, how much I spent, or how much I tweaked the plan, it become apparent that this was not going to work. OOPS, I think I cased this jump hard.

But, like any good crash, you get back up, dust yourself off, and figure out how to go fast again, or maybe even faster.

We found a new building in Campbellton, tweaked it to suit our needs, and ended up with the dream bike shop we’ve been planning for almost four years. Definitely not the line-choice I planned for this race, but sometime you have to let the bike go where it wants to get a winning result.

We’ll be closing our current location Sept. 25 while we move to our new location and we’ll be open again Oct. 4, ready to pin it.

If you need anything, this Friday the 24th will be your last chance until we open the doors at the new shop. Don’t worry, It will be easy to find, it’s only 200 feet away from our current store.

I’m James Durand and I’m Goin’ Ridin’…

Campbell RiverCycling