Back on the blog!  I have a lot to share since we last chatted …

Let’s start with Team Astana!  Not a bad national champions weekend for us … As you probably read on Team Astana’s website, we now have Andrey Mizurov (Kazakhstan TT), Assan Bazayev (Kazakhstan Road), Sergey Ivanov (Russian Road), Sérgio Paulinho (Portugal TT) and Tomas Vaitkus (Lithuania Road).  And the Goose successfully defended his Russian TT title.  Can’t complain about that!  Now we’re busy at work getting the guys in their new kits …

So last weekend, Alain Gallopin, Geert Duffeleer and I went to Kazakhstan for the Road Championship and to visit our sponsors.  Assan Bazayev had a great day and it was nice to see his 6 Kazakh teammates support him in the victory.  Alain and I were in a car following the race … And also keeping our eye on the younger Kazakh riders … A very talented bunch.  I think you will see some coming up to the Pro Tour level very soon.

After, we had a very nice dinner and party with the sponsor group.  And there was plenty to celebrate with Assan and Andrey’s great weekend and the overall success of the 2008 Astana Cycling Team.  I know I’ve said this before, but I’m really proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish the last 6 months … And maybe more importantly, how we did it.

Speaking of champions, I need to mention EuroCup 2008!  España!!!  Ok, I’ll admit it – I didn’t see the finals, but I have a good excuse … On an airplane flying back from Kazakhstan.  I’ll also admit that I’m not a diehard futbol fan (or soccer for any of you Americans), but it’s hard not to get into EuroCup!  Regardless, it’s still exciting when the country you live in wins … There’s an electric vibe throughout the entire country.  I think you’d have to lack a pulse not to feel it.

While I’m writing this, my daughter Victoria is playing next to me.  It’s amazing how quickly she is growing up.  Wow! She is so much fun to be around and I love spending time with her.  Quite a smart little one as well … Fluent in both Spanish and English.  We speak Spanish at home, but we send her to an English speaking school – the best of both worlds.  It’s always easier for small children to pick up another language.  Just the other day we had a small, but fun party at our house … Her school friends came over to play in the pool and us parents sat around talking … Mainly about our kids!  I’ll try to post some pictures one of these days so you can see how big she is getting!

Ok – I was having a parent “moment” there. 

Well, here’s a shocker!  Getting back on a plane.  Destination: USA!  Part deux of the “We Might as Well Win” book tour! This time stopping in NYC, Portland, SF, Seattle and San Diego.  Something different this go around … Eva will be joining me on the adventure!  She enjoys going to the United States, so I thought it would be nice to have her with me.  We just added a new location to the mix – San Diego.  Eva and I are going to take a mini-vacation … We’re on the west coast and like San Diego, so why not spend a few days down there.  I even managed to squeeze in a book signing on Sat, July 12 at the Trek San Diego store.  All the details for the events are on the “Book” page.  I’ll try to write a few blogs and give you some updates on how things are going and the latest purchases by Eva.  Haha.  We’ll see if that’s funny by the end of the Tour.  Got to keep selling the books!!!

Oh, almost forgot … I’m going to be writing a blog on during the Tour de France.  Providing some daily analysis and commentary.  I’m looking forward to it, but during the first week I’m going to the feel the pain of the West Coasters when I have to wake up EARLY!

Looking forward to catching up in the USA … JB

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