Sea Otter 2009: Melissa Buhl and Sam Hill win Dual Slalom

You can always count on great Dual Slalom action from the Sea Otter.  This year was no different.  There was plenty of spectacular racing in today’s Dual Slalom.  One of the top gravity racers Sam Hill out raced Cody Warren for the men’s finals.  In the women’s side, KHS’ Melissa Buhl bested Olympian Jill Kintner.


IMG3829 by you.

       Sam Hill, smooth on the turns.

IMG3778 by you.

Melissa Buhl on her way to beat Jill Kintner.


The men’s DS had top names going head to head.  Veterans Eric Carter and Kirt Voreis were racing against guys almost half their age and beating them.  Young PROs like JD Swanguen, the Athertons, Jared Rando and Mick Hannah, just to name a few, were all present. 


IMG3757 by you.

Eric Carter edging out the younger legs.



We also saw the return of Kyle Strait.  In the end, out of the 32 racers, Australia’s Sam Hill came out on top.  Out of the gate he was smooth and fast all the way down to the Finish Line.  The top American was Cody Warren.  He was doing well until he crashed on the second heat of the Finals.


The women had 16 competitors.  The action was just as intense as the men.  There were plenty of crashes and head to head battles.  SoCal’s Joy Martin, a regular face in the Fontana races finished 8th.  In the end it was World Champion Melissa Buhl going against Olympian Jill Kintner.  This was the much anticipated match-up.  I have a feeling these two will be going head to head for a long time


IMG3780 by you.

More action – Mick Hannah head to head against Nathan Rennie.


For the full results, goto

Ride Report: Aliso Woods with Olympian/World Champ – Jill Kintner

This past Thursday I headed to Aliso Woods.  I’ve been dying to try a new route that would take me from Aliso to El Moro.  I downloaded the route through however for some reason from the start of my ride, I could not get the GPS to navigate and direct me to the right path.  I decided to forego this new route and stick to my normal ride when riding Aliso.  It would be up Cholla, down Rockit, up Cholla again, then down Lynx.  Heading down Rockit was a blast as usual. Floating over the rocks on my 6.6 is something I could never get tired of.   Reaching the bottom I turned into Coyote trail towards Cholla for my second round of climbing. 


Approaching the bottom of Lynx trail I see a female rider stopped.  As I reached her, she asks “do people go up this trail?”  I said “No, typically everyone comes down this as it’s a fun descent”…. It was obvious that she has never been to Aliso Woods before.  Fast forward the conversation, she introduces herself “Hi, I’m Jill”.  I then recognized her and asked “Jill Kintner???” With her pretty smile she says yes and asks if she can tag along.  Now I wasn’t going to pass up an opportunity to ride with a World Champion and a Bronze Medalist from this past Summer Olympics … so I said “Let’s go, I’ll give you a tour”.


bmx2x by you.

                          BMX- Bronze Medal, 2008 Olympics


From here, we headed towards Cholla to climb back up to the top.  For those who are not familiar with Cholla, it’s a long grind up on switchbacks which are steep in several sections.   From the top of Cholla, we rode towards Lynx and went down on this rocky/rutted singletrack.  Fortunately my helmet cam cooperated and I was able to record the ride (although I cut most of it out on the video below as it was too jarring). 

IMG_2415 by you. 

Bronze grips for a Bronze Medalist. 


Typically I would be finished with my ride call it quits by now.  But since the World Champ wasn’t done yet, I wasn’t ready to end the day.  She asked what other sections were fun in Aliso.  The only thing I can think of was coming down Mathis, but that means we’ll have to climb Cholla again.  Up for the third time, but by now my legs are starting to give.  I actually stopped somewhere in the middle to rest for a bit, while the World Champ was cruising to the top.  From the top of Cholla I had a chance to rest some more.  Jill was on the phone so I took the opportunity to grab my phone and text RL saying “You’ll never guess who I’m riding with” 🙂  From here we headed towards the top of Mathis.  Now Mathis is another fun descent; longer, however not as technical as Rockit or Lynx.  Reaching the bottom, we headed back towards Cholla where we parted ways. 

IMG2414 by you.

               Jill and I at the top of Cholla. 


Jill was fast on both descents.  Quite impressive for someone who wasn’t familiar with the trail and rehabbing a knee.  Man, what an experience!  How often would one have a chance to give a Pro/World Champ/Olympian a tour of a trail?  It wasn’t just a simple giving of directions but to actually ride several segments of the trail and see that they are having as much fun as you are…what a blast!


Jill Kinter, a Seattle native was down in So Cal training and visiting her sponsors.  Formerly with GT, she is now riding for my favorite bike manufacturer – Intense Cycles.  She was on her new Tracer VP and diggin it!  Jill was also riding flat pedals (non-clipless) while still in recovery from her right knee surgery of a torn ACL.  Look for Jill to make a comeback this year in Mtn Cross and Dual Slalom.  Most of 2008 (if not all) was dedicated to BMX in preperation for the 2008 Summer Olympics. 


Jill will racing in the Kenda Cup National Series.  We should see her in Fontana, CA at the end of this month.  Below is a short list of her accomplishments:


tld_jill_kintner by you.





2002 2007

3Time UCI 4x World Champion

2Time UCI World Cup Champion

13 World Cup Victories

3Time US National Champion

2Time Jeep King of the Mountain

4Time Crankworx Champion

3 Time Sea Otter Classic Champion

Norba Series Champion

Australian Series Champion


For more information on Jill Kintner, visit her website at