I love racing...I love racing bicycles more specifically. More specifically than that I prefer on dirt in a gravity assisted manner usually but when that is not available I race anyway. So far in 2012 I have raced CycloCross, BMX, local short track XC, a Road bike hill climb & most recently an XC race at 18 rd.
[Wearing Baggies & giving it on a 15 year old road bike. I took 3rd on the podium in Cat1]
[Me after the Monument Madness Hill Climb road race up to the Ribbon trail head. Of course my wife Sara brought up my new Transition 250 so I could ride down the ribbon:]
At each race I stick out like a soar thumb. I am usually riding equipment not really meant for what I am doing, wearing clothing from my DH race kit that don't really fit in, & attacking the courses with an aggressive DH mentality not traditionally associated with these more tame events. I am usually competitive, get my name & sponsors names announced on the mic & get much recognition for all the great people that support me such as: Grassroots Cycles, Transition Bikes, MTB Strength Training Systems, MRP, White Brothers, DT Swiss, Deity, Kali, Five Ten, All Sound Designs & More.[Using by dropper seat post to get traction on the flat finish line corner in the Rumble at 18 rd XC race, On my way to 2nd]
To be honest I am having a blast. Way more fun than I expected with these disciplines which are not that natural to me. I believe being fit & an all around rider will help me with my DH racing & being in the race mentality before the main season begins will be good also.
A couple years ago when I started working with James Wilson's MTB Strength Training Systems my life was changed. I went from a decent Cat1 to a competitive Pro throughout one winter. I realized that much of the difference from an amateur to a pro is being strong & fit.[Noah Sears, brand manager @MRP/White Brothers, & I still smiling after what was supposed to be a miserable XC race]
Racing the Trestle All Mountain Enduro race last season was an eye opener to what is to come with the future of gravity racing. Enduro style races basically take you down the heart of a full Down Hill course yet zig zagging through the XC trails also. It was all the fun & excitement of a DH race but much longer & there were many more opportunities to pedal so you needed to be super fit & you generally need to be on a smaller bike, which makes the rock garden sections that much more entertaining:)
So far my race calender has more Enduro races than DH not because that is what I am looking for but the fact is in one years time the promoter emphasis has shifted that direction. I am not surprised & I even expected it. For this year I built up new Transition bikes & changed my training early on to prepare for the year of the Enduro.
What I am saying is even though I had a great year racing DH last year & am fully looking forward to crushing that as well, I am having fun cross-training racing all these various events, & hope to be competitive in the diverse Enduro races also. I encourage you to get out there & race for the fun of it. It doesn't matter what you look like or how you do. It is good for you & Grassroots Cycles to support the biking community.
Who knows you might just have a great time too.