Happy Birthday To The ANIMAL

Animal is a great ambassador for MtnBikeRiders.com as well as super cool guy. He’s also a bit of a celebrity at the local trails and events. People ask me all the time…”Who’s this ANIMAL guy…” I simply say…”He’s THE ANIMAL, that’s who!”

Instead of cake, The ANIMAL prefers Smoked Turkey Legs…

So from all of us at MtnBikeRiders.com, Happy Beer-Day!

The Advertures of MOE,RL and the Animal

Not too many people know about this story of Moe, Eric “The Animal” and I. But it started off like this. Animal called me up and ask, (read the following in a super deep,manly voice), “Hey RL, its ERIC! I wanted to see if you’d and Moe would be interested riding the Top Secret Trail(local trail)?” I said I was interested and Moe also agreed to go. We set up a time and date for the ride, it was for Saturday morning @ 7am.

We rode up the trail and once we got to a resting point, we stopped. Animal sits down on the ground, opens up his hydration pack, and pulls out a WHOLE Rotisserie Chicken! Moe and I look at each other, then at our Clif Bars and Gu and start to laugh at the Animal since he was chowing down on the chicken. What made Animal’s snack look good was the fact he had some potatoes and gravy in a container!

As we’re sitting, eating, and chatting, we start to hear some rustling in the near by bushes. I’m looking around but I don’t see anything. Animal looks over his left shoulder, and he lets out a sigh, well more like a groan. Then he says, “ugh…its Kyle.” I asked him who or what Kyle was? Animal then said that Kyle is a Cougar that likes to make an occasional appearance on the trail. “He must have smelled my lunch, dangit, I hate when that happens!” Said Animal. Moe replied, “What do you mean…”when this happens? So you’ve seen Kyle?” Animal reassured us that Kyle the Cougar wouldn’t bother us and will probably only venture out once we leave.

However, Kyle the Cougar had different plans that day. Kyle starts making his way through the bushes. First his left paw, then his nose, then his eyes and eventually his whole head was sticking out. He had an intense look in his eyes. He wasn’t looking at me nor Moe, but he had locked eyes on to Animal’s lunch, the rotisserie chicken.

Kyle takes two steps forward, and by this time, his whole body is out of the bushes, he lowers his head as if he’s getting ready to attack. None of us make move. Then Kyle lunges forward towards Animal! Kyle is going straight for the chicken! Animal yells out, “Nuh UH!!! That’s MY CHICKEN!”

As if the world suddenly hit the slow-moe button…everything was so clear and vivid. Kyle was in the air attacking Animal. But Animal was determined to keep his chicken, and you can see his face changing, from annoyed to really mad. All at the same time, his veins are popping out of his arms, shoulders, neck and his face as he’s cocking his right arm back getting ready to punch. By the way he’s got the chicken on his left hand. Then next thing you know, BOOOOOOOM!!!!!! Animal punches Kyle on the face!!!!!

Kyle falls straight to the ground. But he gets up! Then the weirdest thing happened…Kyle SPOKE!!!! He said, “Dude! WTF was that for!” Animal replied, “That’s what you get for trying to take my chicken! You didn’t even say please!” Kyle said, “Aw c’mon man, I’m super hungry! All I had was a small gopher today. Can’t you just give me a wing or something?” Animal replied, “Fine, but you can’t be jumping out of the bushes like that! You scared my friends!”

Kyle the Cougar apologized for making Moe and I crap our pants. Animal finally introduced us to Kyle and he actually wasn’t that bad of a Cougar. He even opened up to us and shared that his lover, Julius left him for another Cougar. Apparently, Julius wanted to have Cubs, but Kyle didn’t. Anyhow, after about 20 minutes of hanging out, we gave Kyle some Bro-hugs and I gave him some of my Clif Bars and Gus since he looked hungry.

When we got back to the car, Animal asked us, “Did you learn anything from today’s ride?” I said, “Uh, yeah that Cougars can talk?!” “No!” Animal replied, “Sharing is caring, see a need fill a need!”

Southridge Challenge Nov 2009 Winter Series and Triple Crown Finale

One week ago our MtnBikeRiders.com Team finished the SRC winter series and Triple Crown at Southridge.

I signed up for the Single Speed 34 and under XC race. At the start of the race I was the only one in my class, so I was convinced that the Single Speeds would be grouped together. In my head I was racing the 35 and up class as well, this power house named Robur (35 years +) was in attendance, he is a killer on the climbs and down hills. I have chased him and his carbon SS before in the Triple Crown series.

The race starts and I leading the pack though the course, I keeping telling myself to relax and keep the tires on the ground. Half way up the water tower road Robur takes the lead, I try to stay with him as we are passing other riders on the single track. I saw an opportunity to take the lead spot back on a tough uphill section, I charged and passed Robur on his right. Robur did not let up, he passed me about a mile later. I caught up to Robur on the flat section of  the course and started cranking as fast as I could, I peaked at 25 mph on 32 x 20 gearing too fast for Robur’s gearing, that was the near the end of the first lap of three. Race day I weighed 245 pounds, in the end the gear choice was key. It was not too hard to lug uphill and I could ring it out on the flat sections of Fontana.  After almost 13 miles of pushing my legs and the Redline MonoCog 29er to the limit, I came across the Finish Line first with Robur only 9 seconds behind Wow!

S-S Men 34 & Under
Single-Speed Men 35+
Single-Speed Men 35+
Single-Speed Men 35+

Click here for SRC’s home page if you want to get into racing http://www.southridgeusa.com/

and SC Velo’s site http://scvelo.com/component/content/article/90/103-2009-incycle-cross-country-challenge


Thank You to all of our Team Sponsors

Race Report By Eric “The Animal” Hunner: The Traverse 2009

RL Policar-The Animal shares his experience during the 2009 Traverse. Read his report and you’ll be amazed by his strength. I swear man, its like reading about Paul Bunyan or Hercules or something big and strong…I would like to add that The Animal is a very humble guy. The whole team as well as strangers alike are always commenting on how amazing he is or how powerful and how he has these massive banana sized hands, but The Animal remains low key about his abilities. Not only is he a great racer, but he really is a super cool dude.

I am starting to write my report a little more than 24 hours since the finish of “The Traverse” an epic race though the Santa Ana mountain range. Today has been a little rough, I am still feeling the after effects of the race,

traverse 2009

ergon bd1
I raced in The Traverse in 2008 which was a burner with temps hovering in the mid 100’s, so I didn’t take any chances as far as hydration was concerned for this years race. I outfitted my Ergon BD-1 with two bladders, one 3 liter with straight water, and a 2 liter with a mix.

This combination works well for me at 240 pounds I need a lot of fluid, and weight is not an issue with the Ergon backpack. I stuffed my Hoss shorts full of Sportlegs, Ibuprofen {a necessary evil when riding rigid long distance}, Hammer Gels, Power Bars, taped another Power bar on the seat post, and taped more gels on the handlebars. I didn’t want to start thinking about the catered El Pollo Loco at the finish half way though the race. I wanted to race my race and not stop at check points to eat. Lots of food, lots of fluid, and a hassle free Single Speed geared 32×20 on 26″ wheels with lots of PSI in the tires.

My wife was kind enough to drop me off at the start on Blackstar road. I took a quick spin down the road to loosen up, and it was about time to line up for the mass start all 175 of us. I chatted with some familiar faces that I met while racing with the MTNBikeRiders.com Team, one fellows name was Mark [we met at a Mt. SAC race] small world. Mark and his son were racing The Traverse together, very cool I hope to do the same with my little girl some day.

The Pro and Expert class take off promptly at 7am and the rest of us follow. I started right behind the Pro and Expert class and stayed to the side for the first two miles of flat terrain to stay out of the way of geared riders Big Ringin it down the the fire road. As the climbing started I began weaving though the same riders that passed me minutes before. Next stop Beek’s Place, I put my head down and started pressing on I had a long race ahead of me.

Beek’s Place is only a few hundred yards away and I hear RL hooting and hollering. It is an incredible feeling to have support on top of the mountain especially coming from from your team, it is no easy feat to get up to the ridge by car/truck/or suv and be on time for the event. Joe hauled his camera gear up the mountain captured the action unfolding in front of me. I was chasing a single speed up Blackstar and made my pass just after passing Joe [by the Golf ball], I kept up a fast pace and held off the other Single Speeds behind me. In The Traverse they do not have a Single Speed division but I chose to ride one anyways and so did about 5 other riders.

traverse 2009

The weather was about perfect this race I don’t think the temp went over 100 degrees and there was a slight breeze. After many miles of riding and eating a bunch of science food all I could think about was El Pollo Loco at the Finish Line. It was 11:37am and my friend Mark caught up to me as I slowed down to ward off the cramps. We were riding up the last climb to West Horse Thief trail and I said, “El Pollo Loco is going to be served in 23 minutes I can not wait” we are still an hour away from the finish. That hour felt like two hours after going down loose shale rocks and ruts on a rigid bike. I finished the race for the second year in a row, and improved my time by an hour. 2008 time 6hours 36minutes, 2009 5hours 36 minutes. I was glad just to finish this race, it it one of the hardest races I have done yet.

Shimano Winter Series: Finals by Eric Hunner

RL Policar-The Animal has been a great asset to the team and continues to deliver great results in each race. Read his report below and enjoy his race experience for yourself.

I had a great day to say the least. I arrived early in the morning at Southridge to get settled in, I got myself registered for the 34 & under Single Speed class, started the fire in the old school portable Coleman fire pit, ate a tasty ham sandwich for breakfast, followed up by some Sportlegs and Gatorade one Power Bar.

I started off on my pre-ride with very little pressure, I was on time to the event, my bike was dialed in from the Pow Wow event two weeks prior, the dirt and sweat still on the bike from that 44 mile event, I didn’t want to disturb the bike it was working just fine, and the course was in perfect condition for racing all the new sections had settled in. On my preride of the course I stopped and put down two Hammer Gels-Apple Cinnamon best flavor if you like sweets, and one banana.

On the back stretch of the preride which is mostly flat, I practiced my one leg high speed cadence pedaling, and the switch over to the other leg that was resting while other one was working. Single speeds don’t have to be slow on the flats just start pedaling like a crazy person. In my case sprinting with two heavy legs at 150 cadence on 32×20 gearing with 26″ wheels doesn’t make sense to be spinning all the excess weight, give a leg a break and let one do the work. You may be thinking how did I come up with this, in the past I have had many crank arm failures, even snapping a crank arm off six miles from the truck. The bike still rolled, so why walk? Pedal what you can with one leg I thought. I threw the broken arm in my bag and gave it a shot, it worked. Now years later I am using my one leg pedaling to keep up with or pass other racers with or without gears in the flats, during the race I was pedaling up to 21 mph on 32×20 gearing with the cadence as high as 165.

Let me get to the race, we had a large turn out for the SS class this final round at the SRC Winter Series, all the usual suspects were here in attendance David Sanderson, Adam Spik, Rod Leveque, and myself all battling for the overall Shimano Winter Series points for SS 34& under X-Country. We started the race and I surprised myself being able to hold on to fourth position out of the thirteen SS racers with gearing choice. I put my head down and started grinding away at the water tower hill, I kept hearing “Go get’em Mike”. Mike was in the 35 & up SS class, he set a good pace he pulled away at top of the hill putting me in fifth position. I didn’t want to lose any more positions so I kept up the pace with Mike Brauns, we went back and fourth all race. On the second lap riding into the aid station RL tells me I am in the lead position [in my class] and to keep it up. RL then runs up the hill and noticed I was sprinting with one foot, he asks me if I was OK, “I am doing just fine”. I had not showed RL my trick yet. Later on the second lap, out in the back section Mike says, “You are killing me, I am trying to stay up with you” I replied about my gearing being 32×20 he said,” I am running that too” I said on 26″ wheels. Mike then said,”I am on a 29er, you must be spinning like crazy”.

Mike Brauns & I at the finish

We headed for the finish line a few miles away and I think Mike saw my one foot pedal action on the flats, I caught up to a geared bike about to hit the last rocky hill before the finish and see him slow down from a distance and change gears heading for the path on the right, I just aim for the middle and powered down until the rocks claimed my momentum. I jump off and put my new Shimano SH-M182 Cleats to work digging the the toe spike in between the rocks looking for traction and ran past three people tied up in the rocks. I then have only two things on my mind the last half mile to the finish ‘Don’t fall & Don’t Flat’ I made though to the finish in 59min 35 seconds good for First place in the 34 & under class.

Eric and Rod L.

Eric, Adam and David
I ended the Winter Series on a high with First place and Second overall in points to Rod Leveque, Adam and teammate David tied for points.

Podium for overall results.

I had a great time in this Winter Series due to the camaraderie of the other racers David Sanderson, Adam Spik, Rod Leveque, Mike Brauns, and Jon Fugitt. Another big Thank You to MTNBikeRiders.com Team for the support, pictures, gear (Evomo Clothing, Ergon USA, Hoss MTB and BikeCommuters.com), and the great food after each race. Good Times…

Eric Hunner’s Counting Coup 2009 Race Report

–RL Policar: Counting Coup has to be one of the tougher races hosted here in SoCal. On race day, it was estimated that over 300 riders participated in this yearly masochistic fest. Once again, our very own Eric Hunner didn’t disappoint us by racing this event with his single speed.

The results of my last MTNbike event have been posted, the 44 mile, 8,000 +- feet of elevation gain “Counting Coup” 2009 Pow Wow, 10th place overall, 2nd Rigid Singlespeed, 05:09:55 time, 320 plate, age 30. I beat my 2008 time in this event by 8 minutes, this was the most important thing to do in this event. I wanted to come in under five hours, it just didn’t happen. It was bitter cold on March 7, 2009. The event started at 05:30am in the dark. I was armed with a Mini Mag 2 AA LED flashlight zip tied to my helmet, this little light supplied plenty of power until sunrise, don’t knock it until you try it.

I was greeted by The “Moe” at the start of the race, he has some really pictures of Eric Young my buddy, and myself with sunblock not rubbed in, all over my face. I was a little distracted when applying sunblock due to the events early start and trying to make coffee on a Coleman Stove, I think next year I am going to stay at home the night before the race and not camp. I love camping but I am aiming for the Vision Quest next year on a SS. I am going to need every bit of luck next year to finish the VQ one of the 10 most difficult MTN Bike events in the country, and still be able to move when it is all done.

The Pow Wow started on time and we were off to Beeks place, some 10 miles away uphill. I am greeted by Joe “Mama Jamma” about an hour later. He snapped some sweet pictures and gave me some support to dig out steep climb around the corner.

The other riders around me looked at me like they wanted some support from their peers as well. I pedaled another 12 miles before a rocky, narrow switchback called Motorway. I made it down even passing three full suspension bikes, and letting two speed demons pass me as to not be in the way. I get to the first aid station and go to take my Ergon Backpack off to refill the bladder, I had to get help from one the volunteers to get my pack unclasped. My hands were freezing and rattled after coming down Motorway on a rigid bike. Soon my hands were feeling normal again, I was refueled and ready to climb Maple Springs. I caught up to my biggest competition at the SRC race’s Mr. Rod Leveque and offered him some teriyaki turkey jerky, he looked at me like I was crazy. Rod was in the Vision Quest (56 mile) event on gears. We had some friendly hill climbing competition together eventually he broke away.

I was able to pedal up most of the hills this year, I removed my Spot hub and laced in a new Hope SS hub days before the race. With this change I had a built in travel alarm for hikers, and was able to easily change my gearing to 32×20, last year I ran 32×18 and fought cramps early in the morning and hiked most of the steep terrain. Being able to pedal most of the hills this year feels better than walking, and its faster. I thought I would able to come in under five hours with not hiking as much this year but two factors were the snowy ice on top of Saddleback mountain slowed me down, and the bitter cold, it took me forever to feel my burn. The cold weather was keeping me numb.

After all the climbing I was again greeted with another downhill to the finish line, if you have never been down Upper Holy Jim put it on your short to do list, if you like scary ruts going into corners, rocks, stairs steps, gravel, switchback’s, rollers, high speed action for some 10 miles. I made it though the 44 miles without injury, bike failure, or cramps thanks to SportLegs, six liters of fluid while riding. Next year I aim to step it up to the Vision Quest (56 mile) and keep climbing when I get to the bottom of Holy Jim. It is time to start training for next year’s Pow Wow already

To see more of Eric’s photos from the event (56 total!), check out the Counting Coup Flickr Set.

Eric Hunner: SRC #4 and a training ride to follow. A long day in the saddle

RL Policar-Eric never stops to amaze me. Not only did he race, but he went on a training ride right after the event!

My race prep started days before the actual race, this included shopping for healthy food, riding my local spots, and making a trip to Shimano to drop off some cleats to hopefully get replaced under warranty. I didn’t plan on the tread ripping from the bottom of my cleat only days before the race. It is just something I have gotten used to, bike parts breaking on me at the worst possible time. As I expected the cleats didn’t make it back in time. It was on to plan “B”; I pulled my old cleats out of retirement. I arrived early at Southridge to preride the new cross country course; I had some trouble in the fresh cut winding single track on top of the hill so I rode it few times until I cleaned it. I was warm and ready to race. I made my way back to our base camp and the rest of the MtnBikeRiders team was setting up now. I made what I thought was the last of adjustments to the bike before the start of the race.

The call goes out “All cross country racers go to the start line” I make my way over to the start and the bike feels sluggish. I spin the rear wheel and nothing until I set it down in the dirt, totally flat. I run back to our base camp and ask for a foot pump. Kim Finch {Champ} runs over with pump in hand and turns into my own personal PIT Crew. RL runs over with a new tube. I am in and out of camp fairly fast and make my way over to the start with a few minutes to spare. Teammate David Sanderson and I had a strong solid race free of mechanicals thankfully. In short course racing I have found just throwing your chain off will cost you positions on the podium. Better make sure your ride is solid. David Sanderson finished fourth, and I finished third. I just finished my seventh short course race 18 miles or less since the longer events of 2008. The shorter races every couple of weeks is great for staying competitive and prepared for the longer races.

I left Southridge shortly after my race concluded and headed towards Saddleback Mountain to add some more miles for training and to break my body down to see how far I can push myself. The next event for me is the “Counting Coup” put on by the Warriors Society http://warriorssociety.org/ this event is 44 miles long and is a real test to even finish. I will be doing this on a single speed again as I did in 2008.

I parked my truck on Blackstar road and grabbed my bike and backpack that was still set up for short course [one tube, pump, tire irons, no patch kit]. After some grueling miles climbing Blackstar Canyon especially after a race I made it to “Beaks Place”. Moments later the rear flats again just as it did before the race. What a perfect time to take a break at “Beaks Place”. I tear into the rear tire and find that the rim tape had failed. I now remember that my tools and tubes are limited and not set up for epic rides. I carefully reset the rim tape and install my only tube. I continued for another mile and a half on Main Divide road and came up and some shuttled Downhillers, they were about to drop in but hit me up for some allen wrenches, that I had. I chatted with these 4 guys wearing assorted items from “The PATH” before they dropped into Corona, I decided it best that I turn around and head for home.

This part of the story ends much like it started. My Team & Friends bailed me out-and kept me rolling. Upon my decent down Main Divide I came up on a couple taking a break at “Beaks Place”, just as I pass the woman she said, “Hi Eric” I then realize it is my friend Shannon. Shannon is one of my friends that rides in our group on Wednesday’s (Shannon was out training for the Counting Coup as well).
Shannon and Robert were resting after their climb up Blackstar. We chatted for a bit and continued downhill. About ten minutes later I was out of the game with a pinch flat no more tubes or patch kit. I tried to tie the inner tube in a knot at the cut, but it didn’t seal. Just then Shannon and Robert came around the corner and threw me a tube. Luckily they stayed with me, it was not my day. As I was filling the tire with air the valve stem broke in half. Shannon throws me a second tube this one was Animal approved much better quality. The tire holds air and we ride for another six miles, we get to the road safely without walking. Day’s Total 6 mile warm up lap, 12 miles of racing, 23 miles of post race training, 4 inner tubes, 2 gallons of water, 1 gallon of Gatorade, 5 Power Bars, 1 bag of Turkey Jerky, half pound of trail mix, 4 bananas, 2 apples, 1 orange, 10 sport legs, and a hard lesson to bring the proper supplies when going on longer rides= priceless.

It’s nice to have great friends to help you when you need it, and don’t hesitate to stop and help someone on the trail. You just might meet someone really cool.

Looking for more pictures of the Southridge Winter Series? Click on the banner below!

Shimano Winter Series #3: Eric “The Animal” Hunner

RL Policar-Eric “The Animal” Hunner is the team’s power house. Not to take anything away from the other riders, but we all would agree that Eric has to be one of, if not, the strongest rider we have in our arsenal. So it brings me great pleasure to present to you a short, but sweet account of the Animal’s SS race at Southridge.

I had a good feeling about racing Southridge Winter Series the week before the actual race on Saturday. I was training and riding I thought a good amount, I was eating correctly up until the night just before the race my Dad took my family out to dinner, we feasted on some tasty Chinese food. I love any kind of food with meat and a side of rice, you could say a have a weakness for white rice. It was raining buckets of water while were eating, I kept thinking to myself, Wow I am racing tomorrow Rain or Shine. I think I was in a Rainy Day mood, I kept shoveling food down the hatch.

I started the race with a great start and then reality set in, or should I say dinner did. I didn’t feel sick, I just didn’t feel like I had the juice to stay with the leaders. Two weeks before in the SRC winter race #2, I was leading almost the entire first lap with Rod Leveque, hot on my heels. He pushed me to go even faster in that race, the two of us left a rather large gap between us and the other SS’s. That was not the case in this race the 35 and older group was on fire this round. Two things happened to me that I learned from this race, Don’t eat like an “Animal” before you Race, and don’t Train so hard that when the race does come you still have some gas left in the tank to perform. My training leading up to Race was pretty intense, I believe I over trained and was feeling a little burned half way though the race.

Later on, one of 35+ racers said to me “I didn’t know who you were but you sure did take off at the Start of the race”. I replied back to him “Did I start the fire on your seat because you killed the water tower hill” he laughed and called me an “Animal”. I then told this fellow racer [I think he name was Timothy Sparks] that won his class in the 35+ SS that “Animal” was my nickname on my MTNBikeRiders Team he said something like that is fitting.

Timothy asked me about riding/racing a rigid SS. I told him that going downhill is challenging, but I LOVE riding a rigid bike for cross country, especially uphill mainly for the fact it Pedal Bob is Not riding with me. [Pedal Bob = crushing suspension while climbing and transmitting your pedal strokes to your suspension , it is like being robbed at gun point when you are heavy weight]

This brought up the “Question”, exactly how heavy are you? “240 weighed myself this morning.” Timothy gave me props for fetching second place in my class 34 and under, Timothy said,” I thought I was heavy @ 195 pounds and you are riding rigid SS to boot”

Eric “The Animal” Hunner’s Southridge Winter Series Race Report

RL Policar-Eric “The Animal” Hunner is our BIGGEST racer on the team. Not only does he stand at a towering 6′ 24″ tall, he also weighs somewhere around 240-900 lbs, and that’s ALL MUSCLE. This guy is so powerful, his torque when he pedals is strong enough to snap crank arms in HALF! Yes I said in HALF! With all that said, for a big guy like Eric, who can easily outweigh his competition by at least 100lbs…this gentle giant can move like a cheetah.

I did not know if I was going to make it to this race, there were a few issues I needed to take care of. First off the Holidays, need I say more. My training time was more then cut in half. I tried every home baked goody at least three times and ate like a king. The weekend before the race I was stuck in bed with some nasty stomach flu. My training for this race consisted of watching movies and eating junk food.

Next there was the bike, there was this nagging problem that popped up in the last race at Southridge, it felt as if the rear brake was dragging. Upon closer inspection I found that the bearing flanges on the rear axle were binding on the hub under weight, and pedaling due to a tweaked axle. One day before the race I stopped at the LBS and picked up a set of inexpensive Single Speed wheels. I got home slapped some skinny 26×2.1 on rode it down the street and parked it. Well I am almost race ready. I just pack up for the day and get the family in the truck bright and early to make the trip to Fontana.

Driving to the race was an experience in the Santa Ana winds. A Semi trailer was laying on its side on the 60 Freeway near the exit to the race, palm trees were bent over, and dirt was in the air. I knew this was going to to be rough racing due to the winds, my prediction was right. I really thought I was cutting it close to cut off time for SRC registration, I made it in time. Registration took a
while because it was the first race of the season and number plates had to be labeled.

I get back to our base camp and get ready asap to line up at the start line, no warm up riding before this race. I chat with some familiar face’s in our Single Speed group and introduce my fellow Teammate David Sanderson to the group. Thirty seconds to start. The race starts we take off with the pack and we catch a slower rider from the previous group, all of us Single Speeders start to pile up behind this rider. I break out in a sprint to get in front of this rider, the competition follows. I kept the lead for a while until we hit the road to the water tower. The Santa Winds were pushing us back down the hill, my lack of warming up surfaces while climbing this hill, two SS pass me [in another class 35 & up], ouch! That fired me up, I didn’t want that to happen again. Rod Leveque a fellow competitor was having a good day, he was fast, and smart on his lane choices when climbing around traffic. Rod passed me and a few other racers on a technical uphill, I caught up to him at the finish line two minutes off his time. Rod with Team Jenson collected first place, Eric “The Animal” Hunner and David Sanderson with Team Mountain Bike Riders collect second and third place.