Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Sol Vista Triple DHip - 3 Stage DH Race

Last weekend was the 2nd annual SRAM Triple DHip at Sol Vista Bike park in Granby, CO. For those that don't what the race is, it's a 3 stage DH race meaning there is 3 separate DH courses and they combine your time on all 3 to determine the winner. The middle race was chainless meaning you have to be able to hold your speed and pump to go fast. That type of race really separates the strong pedalers from the ones with massive amounts of flow and cornering ability. There was also some really big names there racing such as Greg Minnar, Mic Hannah, Andrew Neethling, Jill Kitner, Duncan Riffle, and a few more. Needless to say the pro field was stacked!

I'm sure most of know how stressful bike racing can be and this weekend was no exception. We ended up taking the new 16 passenger Grassroots van and the Landis' enclosed trailer. After many hours of screwing with the wiring on the van and trailer the team was finally on their way at about midnight on Thursday. I was supposed to go with them, but was called back to work that afternoon because of a little problem. The van made it to the Landis Estate at about 04:30am and they were on course 6 hours later after setting up the pits that morning. I finally made it up there around 2pm, but did manage to get a little more sleep than they did. As if all that wasn't stressful enough, everyone found out that instead of the usual break ups of age groups and categories, they grouped everyone into just a few classes to make it that much harder in each class.... Amateur Women, Pro Women, 19-34 Men, 35+ Men, and Pro Men. Also, instead of just having to practice and memorize one DH course, there were three total, two on Saturday and one on Sunday. That being said, everyone from our team had a great time and raced their hearts out. The weather cooperated for the most part with only a few showers here and there and mostly dry courses.

Noteables from the weekend.......
  • Kyle Fissel from MRP tagged along with us but ended up injuring his hand on Friday and couldn't compete. Thankfully his lift ticket didn't go to waste and I was able to shred some runs with it for the first time since my collar bone injury!
  • Adam Lavender finally got his bike dialed in by day 3 and pulled off a 9th place in the mens 35+ category. Must of been my re-valve on his Rock Shox Totem ;-)
  • Sara and Amy both manged to over come most of their fears of many obstacles on the first course with some practice and were able to do full top to bottom runs without stopping. By the end of Sunday, they were shredding Silky Johnson faster than I have ever seen either of them ride. We could barely pull away from them!
  • For the first time ever on Sunday, Amy was able to fully picture a race run in her head from top to bottom. Unfortunately, 50 ft into that last race run, she was going so fast, she pinch flatted and had to ride a flat down the entire course. You'll get em next time babe!
  • Mike McCoy ended up 17th out of 49 riders in the Mens 19-34 class. He wasn't all that impressed with himself, but with a field that large and broad, 17th is a damn good accomplishment! And he wrecked in one of his runs too. Next time mike... you got it!
  • Eric was racing against guys like Greg Minnar, Mic Hannah, Mitch Ropelato, Duncan Riffle, and Andrew Neethling so he was an underdog to say the least. His first two races on Saturday didn't impress him and he was feeling like he just didn't have what it takes to be a pro, but he threw down on Sunday and ended up only 11.5 sec behind Greg Minnar (the winner)! You know I'm still gunnin' for you Landi!
  • On Sunday after the race, we all did two fun runs as a team (minus Adam because he had to hurry home to finish some work for monday). I can honestly say those two runs were where I had the most fun all weekend. There's nothing like hopping back on your bike after 7 weeks off and still being able to pin it (don't tell my doctor).
~Pete Knepper

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