Alex Harvey’s training schedule is already busy, but he’s still taking some time out to squeeze in the 2010 Canadian National Mountain Biking Championships in Canmore in mid-July.
“It’s a good opportunity since I’m already here,” he said in a phone interview. “It’ll be a really hard workout for me.”
Harvey was a very promising mountain bike racer in the junior category, but when the time came to move up to senior, he had to make a decision—mountain biking or cross country skiing. “There’s a big step between racing as a junior and racing as a senior in mountain biking. I had to choose and I went with skiing.” Judging by the results he’s posted since then, it’s pretty safe to say he made a good choice–although his father, Pierre, made a successful career as a road cyclist and cross-country skier, competing in both the Summer and and Winter Olympic Games in 1984.
If Alex does well at Nationals, he might get a chance to race at the Mountain Bike World Championships, being held in Harvey’s backyard at Mont-St.-Anne in Quebec in early September. But he’s not treating this as a comeback to mountain biking–he’s unsure as to how he will do at Nationals, or whether he’ll even be able to go to the Worlds. Training camps and travel may keep him away from eastern Canada.
Though Harvey’s competitive spirit will probably make an appearance, he’ll be treating the race like a workout. His training leading up to Nationals has not been mountain biking-specific–though he has put in more road riding hours this year than in previous ones. Harvey bought a new bike three weeks ago, but hasn’t spent more than “a few hours on it” since then. He’s anticipating more pain than he’s used to when climbing onto the bike. “I’m not as fast as I used to be, so it’s probably going to be really hard.”
He admitted he does miss the sport, but not as much as he thought he would. “It’s more fun when you’re racing well,” he said with a laugh.