Back to the grind! After about a month break with plenty of eating through the Holidays I opted to skip the XC race for the Southridge WS #1. There to meet me at Fontana Saturday morning were team mates RL, Priscilla, Kim, Tony, Moe, Eric, David and our families.
SUPER D… With little time spent pedaling in the past month, I decided to stick with Super D. It’s been almost a year since I raced this discipline so I was very excited to give it another shot. Making it more interesting was my teammate Moe will be in the same category with me. Always fun when you have someone you know racing with you.
The Moe and I on top of the course.
Around 12:15 Moe and I took the shuttle up to the top of the DH section. Super D courses changes from race to race so we were anxious to see what was in store for us. The race was scheduled to start at 12:30 but like everything else for the day, everything was running late. With the high winds blowing, it was cold and uncomfortable on top of the hill.
The Course: With plenty of time until our line-up, I was able to walk and pre-ride some sections of the course. It appears that the climbing would be at a minimal for today’s race – maybe 15% and the rest will be a descent through a winding singletrack crossing three bridges then onto off camber sections of the DH course. Then ultimately through the lower rock garden, the wall and finishing of where the DH ends.
The Race: Lining up, I was positioned behind Moe. A little friendly bet between friends motivated me to try and run him over… j/k. As Moe approached the starting point, I tapped his helmet and wished him luck. I then turned on my helmet cam to record my run. 30 seconds after Moe started, off I went. This course started off with a mild descent then onto several turns on a singletrack.
I then made a sharp right into the only ascent of the course. Here was a quick grind to the top. Along the way up, there were a group of downhillers hiking their bike up for practice. I yelled from the bottom to make way. Passing them the climb ended. I turned right into more singletrack descent which winded towards the bottom. Several corners were washed out but I was able to navigate through them. Along the way I pass two bridges. The third bridge was not visible from our view point at the top of the hill. It came up suddenly for me. As I turned into it, I see Moe down at the other side off his bike and another rider slowly approaching the bridge. Fear of running into the other rider I panicked and veered off the course, into a small bush. Fortunately I did not crash. I quickly steered my bike towards the bridge, rolled over and pedaled to gain speed and time for what I just lost.
Making my way down. Photo by Chris/Sharky.
Onto the off-camber turns then onto the long sprint towards the lower rock garden. Approaching this section, I catch up to another rider. I was on his rear tire going into the rocks. As he gets to the bottleneck point, he goes over the bars in front of me.
I was right behing this guy. Photo by Eric Foltz.
Blocking the only way, the quickest was to pick up my bike and run around him. As soon as I did, I got back on my back and sprinted to the finish. 4th place – A fun run indeed!