Race Report: Stoopid 50, Fat Tire Frenzy, Round Top Enduro, Pats Peak, and Rothrock TrailMix.
Round Top Mountain Bike Association: First Ever Round Top Enduro. Round Top, NY.
Pro riders Seamus and Abbey both enjoyed this Enduro event (and both won their races).
“RTMBA’s First Enduro went great. Rain during the week left the trails perfect for race day. It was a great day of sweet trail riding with old and new friends. By the end of the day I was a little uncertain of the results of my efforts but came out on top with my first Enduro win of the 2014 race season. Feels great to notch the first one and move forward to the big races coming up.”
“This weekend I did my first ever Enduro race. Downhills are my weakness so I thought doing a race like this would help me improve my skills. It was a small race with only 50 competitors and was a fundraiser for the RTMBA. I did not have time to pre-ride any of the five timed stages which made it a little harder to race. Luckily, I was with Seamus so he gave me beta on each of the stages. I was able to ride pretty much everything with the exception of a small rock drop and the “Grand Canyon” section on the fourth stage. Each stage had flat and uphill sections which really helped me make up the time I lost going slow on the steeper downhills. The results didn’t get posted until after the awards ceremony so I had no idea how I did until I was called up to the podium for winning the Women’s Pro/Open category!”
MASS Endurance: Rothrock TrailMix. Boalsburg, PA.
Jess and Joël started off their double-header weekend with this 36-mile race located at the base of Tussey Mountain Ski Resort near State College.
Jess reports on their race:
“This was our first year doing this race, so we didn’t know what to expect. From what we had heard, it was a relentless course consisting primarily of all gnarly single track. What we heard was in fact true… Adding to the difficulty was the weather. Rain for the few days prior and a race day that was misty and overcast made the rocks slippery and brought about some soggy trail conditions at places. But, rocky single track is what Joël and I enjoy and what we do well, so we were right at home and enjoying every minute of it.
“Our Giant bikes with their 27.5 inch wheels are made for this type of terrain, they made the trails fun and fast. In the end we both had good rides, and despite feeling beat up and battered, we both enjoyed the day. Joël out-sprinted his archrival at the line to make the top ten overall men and I was third overall female.”
Stoopid 50. State College, PA.
Day Two of Jess, and Joël’s double-header found them in the same beautiful location but at a different race! Jed arrived to camp out the night preceding, and all three riders represented Giant Northeast in the 8th Annual Stoopid 50.
Jed reports on the race:
“A stoopidly awesome adventure! If you’re looking for a good day of rocky single track, luscious PA forests, and good vibes, then the Stoopid 50 in State College is the race for you.
“For this year’s race we headed up the night before and camped out right at the race. A large grassy area made for a perfect BBQ and chill spot, plus the running water and job-jonnies were key. The sky was so clear we could even see satellites traversing the night sky. An outdoor concert next door at Tussey Mountain rocked the entire valley, and we couldn’t resist but going to check it out. Fortunately, we caught the last few songs of a local cover band and even some fireworks being set off in the distance.
“After a nice chilly night sleep, we got ready to race. The race starts out with a long gradual fireroad climb and then quickly dumps into the Tussey Ridge single track. It’s kind of a clusterf*!k, but still a good time. Jed ended up flatting as Joël and Jess rolled on through. PSU veteran, Eric “Rampage” Snyder was even in the mix.
“Some double track climbing, and the race takes you into the Cooper’s Gap area. This is by far the funnest portion of the race. Lots of great trail riding, and this year’s edition even featured a new section of trail which was essentially 2+ miles of hero dirt turns! Good stuff!
“The aid station provided much needed hydration, calories, and lube. And then the long slog back begins. A long grassy climb, drops you into a long double track descent, and then onto another climb, and then even another climb. Last up is the Laurel Run downhill, which is much more fun when you’re fresh, but none-the-less still keeps it exciting. Another new section of turns and, you are treated with not only the finish line, but beers, burgers, veggie burgers, mac-n-cheese, beans, etc.
All-in-all a great day on the bike, which is what it’s all about. Cheers to the Stoopid 50.”
To read Jess and Joël’s complete report and to watch a video of their weekend, visit their blog.
Eastern States Cup: Pats Peak Downhill Thrill. Henniker, NH.
Brian and Collin traveled to New Hampshire for some thrilling downhill.
“This weekend Collin and I attended the Pats Peak Eastern States Cup race. Plenty of rain coming into the weekend brought brought a super slick course for practice. Sunny skies and plenty of wind dried the track up tremendously. A bit of a different race format, we ran two race runs, taking your fastest run. A blowout on my first run left me hungry for redemption. Charged strong out of the gate on the second run. Dropping a chain somewhere in the middle of the track left me pumping my way to a tenth place finish.”
“Pats Peak race was a lot of fun. Course felt like it changed every time you went down it. It was very rocky and awkward. I got 8th place in a packed group of locals that ride there often. Really happy with my bike and the how it did on the course and absolutely love it!”
Virginia Off-Road Series (VORS): Fat Tire Frenzy at Falling Creek Park. Bedford, VA.
Lester has been a good sport about driving around the Mid-Atlantic region to make it to many of the MASS races. Last weekend, Lester got to stay close to home and enjoy a local race.
“VORS has been running in the state since 2007 and boasts 20+ events across XC and Endurance events, even some Short Track, Dual Slalom, and Duathlon action. The race calendar runs from March to October allowing for plenty of competition. This weekend was one of the mainstays to the calendar, The Fat Tire Frenzy in Bedford, VA. Sunday’s XC race highlighted the efforts of the County Parks and Recreation Trails Specialist. If you’ve never been, it’s an ideal MTB retreat destination with access to other major trail systems in a 1.5 hour radius.”
“The Expert Male Open field was fairly small but packed some heavy hitters meaning an honest race… At 10:30am we started our race and the field segregated quickly. Sitting in the second group I started to see a gap open to the front 5 or so riders and sprinted around two other guys to join them. That front group kept the gas on and I watched them pull away in the woods. I sat solo for five minutes trying to bridge before slowing my tempo and allowing the next group behind me to latch on. The new group pushed a great pace and we ripped through the first and second segments of single track. The third section of trail took us along more rolling terrain littered with quartz rocks and roots as we weaved back and forth through the woods… I finished up the second lap in decent shape and took a bottle feed from some friends from Richmond who came down for the race. My third lap was focused on riding clean lines and carrying speed since the other group was well out of sight.”
“My skills have sharpened and riding the 27.5 XTC Advanced felt at home on these trails. Later I would find out that the Trails Specialist was riding a 650B bike when he first built these trails so it was no coincidence. The temperatures in mid-80’s were deceptive and with about 2 miles to go my left quad cramped up forcing me to stand and stretch through the remaining course. About a quarter mile to the course my leg started to relax and I threw a big effort to finish strong. Though my result was not ideal, I was happy with how I was riding and glad to be back racing at home.”
Lester’s Current Soundtrack: Foo Fighters – Walk