Archive for June, 2009

Beech Mtn #1

This past weekend ws the first of three races to be held at Beech Mtn. Beech used to be a venue from back in the day and everyone thought it to be the burliest track around. Saturday’s practice was horrible for me. I had fought extreme exhaustion the first of the week. I think that race run a Snowshoe really put a hurt on me. Monday I was off, Tuesday I tried a trip to Lake City on moto with Devin, but that was a horrible mistake. All the rain had the track incredible slick and very overgrown. I crashed twice in a steep rocky creek ascent and turned back to the truck without hesitation. Then on Wednesday I tried Haw on the Shova, but the ground was slow rolling and I just didn’t need to be out. The I started to fight a head cold and sinus pressure the last half of the week. Against better judgment I tried moto with Ben and Devin at Duncan’s on Thursday. Surprisingly, the track was in great shape and new lines around the deepest ruts are starting to form. It was great way to end up the week. On Saturday morning I headed off solo to Banner Elk, NC. It takes about 2 1/2 hours to get there, so its not that bad of a trip. Practice on Saturday was terrible. I ended up crashing a lot on the track, which had quite a few tricky sections. Nothing too big, but stuff that gave me a little trouble. I crashed on a bigger step-down jump and dislocated my pinky finger. The EMTs didn’t want to help. They just wanted to send me off to the hospital. I’m not one for hospitals, so I looked for someone to help me pop it back in place. Luckily Andy Devault is a doctor by association I guess and he popped it right back in without any trouble. I tapped it up and took a few more runs. I felt worse so I decided to not take my qualifier run and just start Sunday’s final at the beginning of the pack. I grabbed my music for Sunday’s practice and it really helped to put me in a better mood to ride. I decided I would just pump and cruise my way down the track instead of busting out of the gate and going down like the Tasmanian Devil. Within a few turns I was feeling great and just having fun… until the hard sweeping turn in the grass just under the lift. I took the turn too fast and the back end barked out and down I went. I slid on the grass for a way and knew immediately I was out for the race, so I jumped back up and cruised the rest of the run. A funny thing happened though, by taking it a little slower I hit all my lines perfect and ended up with a pretty good time despite the crash.

There is a lot of speculation about how much time a crash can cost you. I had a 2:34 with a on back, go find my bike crash. 5th (in the money) was around a 2:32 if I remember correctly. So speculate all you want, in the end it comes down to who can stay on their bike AND be the fastest. Not just one of them.

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Snowshoe #1

So this past weekend was #1 of Snowshoe’s DH race series. Thursday night Zizka and I traveled up to White Pine to meet up with James and Jackie. From there we traveled up to Bristol to meet up with Geritt. I jumped in with Geritt and we ended up in WV around midnight. The day of practice saw rain and typical Snowshoe conditions for June. It was wet and muddy. Sections of the race were nasty and thick mud. I sort of enjoyed it. We haven’t had a good mud race in a while. Saturday again was rainy and windy. Conditions were challenging to say the least but I still tried to have fun. I trained with Geritt pretty much all weekend so at times I felt great and at times i felt vastly inferior. Anyway Sunday came around and G and I had an awesome last practice run. We both felt pinned and looked forward to the race. Too bad the race runs are 4 hrs after practice. The track dried out considerably and I swapped up tires. In the past I have regretted swapping tires just before a race, but I am glad I did. I think everyone had a terrible run. Our timing was off and just about everyone hated their run for some reason of another. Based on 3 years of racing at Snowshoe my run was the worst I have ever had. I was incredibly tired and I over-cooked a minimum of 50% of my turns. I think lucky for me everyone was in the same boat, so it averaged out in the end. I ended up 9th out of 26 or so. I’ll take it considering my level of commitment this year and the track conditions. $50 in my pocket.

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Great Weekend

This past weekend was another great one. Friday afternoon I got in a good spin around Norris on my Shova ST before Geritt arrived later in the evening. By the time he arrived, Meghann and I had grilled up some Brats, corn-in-the-husk and zucchini. Saturday morning we dropped Jasper off with Meg’s parents so that we could head down to the Ocoee to raft the Upper section. Karl, Robin, and a few other of Karl’s friends had planned a weekend camping trip down there so we tagged along. Karl’s buddy Barry works down there and always hooks us up with a great trip down the river. This year was no exception. We hit the white water center section and had a blast in there. I sort of wish the whole trip was that burly. After we got through with the raft trip Geritt, Karl and I hit Brush Creek loop on our trail bikes. That loop is a lot of fun and you pretty much can hold it wide open the whole route. We worked on our cornering skills and held our heart rates high. Sunday Geritt and I hit Windrock to do some tuning on the new Makulu bikes. It turns out they need 200 lb spring rates. I can’t source one easily, so I am going to build back up my Izimu. That bike was riding so nice before I switched, so lets hope it doesn’t hold a grudge for me trying the Makulu.

Next weekend is Snowshoe and the following weekend is Beech. Lets hope I remember how to race.

Here are a few pictures of Wyatt acting up.


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Joey Bag of Doughnuts

So Joey is off in a foreign land, but I see he is keeping it real…

Follow his adventures here… Joey Bag of Doughnuts

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Mbuzi for sale

I need to get a large. This medium is just too small for me at 6′1″. If you know anyone looking for a great frame, let me know. Its frame only. NO rear shock. I can get a DHX for it if you need for an extra $200. But I need $900 out of the frame. Its regularly $1800.

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Wed ride with Terry

Wednesday morning Terry J and I hit up Haw before the heat and possible rain made the afternoon un-rideable. We started out on the counter-clockwise route, but around EZ trail we crossed over and went to Five-Points. From there we ducked back into the woods on the west side of the powerlines and rode nice little gem. From there we connected to I trail and tried out the new Roller Coaster. While the benching looked half-assed, the route was pretty good and will add Roller Coaster to my list of regular routes. We finished up on K2 and Terry did a dizzying tour around Fox and surrounding trails. We ended up hitting Twister backwards and on out Middle. All in all it was a good ride and a great route.

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Tennessee 2 Day Dirt Bike

This past weekend was the TN 2 Day ride at the Cumberland Mtn private OHV. First let me say this… the trails were incredible, the weather was great, and I didn’t hydrate properly. Friday, Devin and I headed down to meet Chris Wyatt and Jeff Braswell at the campground in Winchester, TN. The temperature Friday night was in the upper 50s and was great.

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Saturday morning we woke up, ate some breakfast, attended the riders meeting and prepped for the first 50 miles. We saw this guy and immediately thought, ‘did Karl show up after all?’. Anyway Chris snuck around and I snagged this picture. We saw him riding in this exact kit on the trail. Awesome!

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This wasn’t a race, but with these guys everything is a race. The trail was the best singletrack I’ve seen and just kept going and going. Constantly turning, braking, standing, sitting, turning, and turning takes its toll after 50 miles and with no place to coast and recover I hit a wall around 40 miles. I was cramping bad and fighting a swollen knee from a wreck around mile 25. I limped back to the campground and iced my knee and we prepped for the next day.

The second day was the same 50 mile route with 10 miles cut out around the lunch/gas stop. Devn who is the ironman of enduro riding did the extra 10 miles with Jeff and a few of his friends from Alabama. Wyatt and I were beyond beat, so we limped back to finish the advertised full 90 miles. The GPS says it all.

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More US Open Photos







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