While Emma and Maureen where serving up great brews at ales and trails then ripping up the women’s field at the Skyline race, Amon and I (Tsering) headed up to Return on the Jedi. This is my favorite race of the year. Its is located up Onion mountain just outside Grants Pass OR. It starts with a nice technical loop followed by a 9 mile insane climb and then enough single track to make you puke. The riding up in Oregon is just awesome, the single track flows and has a back country feel to it that you can just get lost in. This is often the case, as people often do get lost. Amon and I arrived on Saturday before the race, but missed the Super D that we tried to make. However, according to the Weir and company, we didn’t really miss anything. We decided to camp with the WTB crew and enjoy a massive Mark Weir heckle party that soon ensued, which is always entertaining. Amon and I called it an early night and retired first to prepare for the scorching hot suffer fest that was soon to come. On race day we had a nice relaxed breakfast and then headed out to warm up. This year Return was the Oregon state championship so there was an air of nerves about the camp wondering who would show up and contest the title. On the line Evan Plews, Mark Weir, some Cannondale boys, and of course Amon Pease were the some of the notable characters. The Pro/Expert field started hard and immediately there was a split between the Pros and the Experts. Lucky for me I made the break. Into the first single track section I managed to hold onto 5th place. I then battled with Evan Plews and a Cannodale rider to maintain position going up the hill, but a quick look at my heart rate made me realize I had to take it a bit easier. Some more mixing in on the next single track and I was in 6th going into the long climb, but I was alone. I got caught by one pro rider and caught one pro rider. Just after catching my man I cramped badly and had to hop off and relax a bit. A minute or two later I was back on and chasing hard the rest of the race solo. I had an epic personal battle to keep the pace high while ripping through the back country single track of southern Oregon. My goal at the start of the day was a sub 3hr time being that last year I finished in just over 3hrs. Watching my race clock I powered hard on the Jedi trail, which is the final descent of the race. I hit the final flat section at 2:57 and sprinted all out to finish 3:00.21 according to my Garmin. I was stoaked with the result and finished 7th overall beating some Pros and all the Experts. Not to mention winning the Oregon Semi-pro state championship! Amon who spent a couple weeks in Alaska training hard at his mad dancing skills was happy to finish ahead of all the experts and had a solid race. I can’t wait till next year Jedi! I estimated I took about 8 mins of my time from last years course, so I have no regrets… Yay bike racing!
Month: July 2008
If you’re a frequent reader oft this blog, you are probably accustomed to hearing about our kick ass riders win races (or at least place well). This past weekend, our title sponsor, Lost Coast Brewery also won a competition! Lost Coast’s Great White Beer (a delicious Belgian white ale with a special blend of secret spices) won the tasting competition at Ales and Trails, an event held at China Camp in Marin to support the efforts of the International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA). Great White is a fantastic post-ride summer beer and festival goers gladly sipped two entire kegs of donated Great White at the event and enthusiastically signed their names on the poster to vote it their favorite beer. Maureen and I mastered our beer-pouring technique and told beer and bike connoisseurs about the Lost Coast Brewery and our mountain biking team. Earlier in the day, we both led mountain bike rides which met at the Marin tent where people could check out demo bikes and hang out with Shaums and other Marin riders. I led a huge group of about 15 fun and grateful riders around the scenic and challenging singletrack trails at China Camp. When we returned from our three hour ride, festival goers tested their skills on obstacles set up around the venue, enjoyed a delicious lunch, tasted many beers, and bid on items in the silent auction. Lost Coast Brewery also graciously donated for the silent auction and new fans of Great White eagerly bid so they could take a case home. Ales and Trails was a fabulous event that Team Lost Coast Brewery certainly plans on attending again next year. Thanks so much to Mark from Marin and Rachael from IMBA for inviting us to the event! Cheers!
On Sunday 6/29, Emma and I (Maureen) headed to Skyline Park for the annual race. We were worried that it might be too smoky, but it turned out to be a beautiful day. This year the Pro and Expert womens fields were combined, which meant I was racing Emma and she had to do 3 laps of the 8-mile course. Rachael, Athena, and Sarah were present, which meant it was going to be a tough race! I haven’t ridden really hard for over a month, so I was feeling a little nervous at the start. The first climb was tougher but shorter than I remember, and the descent sketchy fun. It is so rocky that is seems like your wheels are going to explode. But they didn’t, and I guess that’s what makes Mavic one of the best! I was battling Sarah on the first and second laps, but on the third lap she threw in the towel and took a DNF for some reason. I didn’t know she quit, so I kept on pushing my pace on the third lap. I had to slow up a little though, because I thought my chain might be on the verge of breaking on the climbs; I also slowed up on the descents because I was getting very tired. After 2.5 hours I was done, and Emma showed up 30 minutes later after her own battle with Jackie. I ended up 2nd, and Emma was 5th. Rachael killed us all, finishing 14 minutes ahead of me. We were glad we came and happy we didn’t wuss out (Saturday night we thought of all the other things we could do with our Sunday morning). Later in the day Emma and I created a Facebook Fan Club for Lost Coast Brewery!! It will be fun to see how long it takes us to catch up to New Belgium’s fan base.
thanks for reading!