|Stoked on 5th place!|
|After some trouble on stage 3 I got caught.|
Stage two began with several fast sweeping turns, sending riders through a few sharp corners and rock sections, after a bit of pedaling the course dropped down some extremely tight switchbacks full of rocks and ruts that could make or break a race run. Stage two ended with a fast fire road sprint to the finish at the bottom of the mountains, where racers had the luxury of restoring their bikes and bodies before returning to the top for stage three.
After a stout
transfer stage that climbed to the top of China Peak riders prepared themselves
for stage three the longest and most demanding race trail of the day. This stage began with some fast corners into
a rocky chute, stage three kept riders on their toes from the very start. The entire course was littered with technical
rock sections and corners reduced to powder by the end of practice, it also
included a bit of climbing. The infamous
rock garden on Stage three is always a challenge for racers to navigate at
speed and this year there was a speed trap sponsored by TRP rewarding the man
and woman with the fastest speed entering the rock garden. After smashing down the gnarly rock infested
section of the stage racers had a bit of singletrack and a long sprint into the
finish at the bottom of the mountain.
|Powering through the rocks and dust.|
At this point some riders had finished for the day but for Pro and Expert racers it was time to climb up the mountain for the third and final time for the rowdy and rocky stage four. Stage four was considered by many to be the most technically challenging of the day and with the inclusion of a flat traversing piece of trail for the start it tested racers physical stamina as well, especially at the end of a hard day of racing. Even though the final line could eat bikes and racers alive, stage four was by far the favorite stage of many racers and was a perfect way to end a stellar day of enduro racing.
|Pre race meeting with Coach Newman.|