Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Super-D Action

Race report from Max Houtzager:

Northstar at Tahoe Super-D
Category: Pro Men
Place: 2nd

Will Patterson, my friend Seth (photographer) and I decided to head up to Tahoe the weekend after Nationals for some downhill riding and super d racing at good old GnarStar (and to continue the cook, eat, sleep, ride, chill lifestyle we dialed in during the past 3 weeks). I wasn't well prepared for the race, due to a lack of sleep and practice on the course thanks to some mechanicals during practice. I knew it would be fine though, since the race would come down to the mass start, riding smooth to not flat or get dropped, and would only last 15 minutes. There were no climbs, but there was plenty of pedaling to make a proper super d. The course was really fun, with lots of fast sweeping turns, decent jumps, and endless rocky sections where line choice and smooth riding would make the difference between flat tires and really slow speeds or not.

There were 10 guys in our category, and I actually had a good LeMans start, running fast, flipping my bike over, and jumping right into my clips. I dropped into the singletrack second, immediately trying my hardest to not get dropped by WTB prodigy rider Ben Cruz. I was able to keep him in front of me, so when we got onto the fireroad I pedaled as hard as I could past him. I was totally stoked to lead. I only got passed back by Ben after a little while of shredding singletrack, which was surprising. I let him pass and kept him in my sight for a while, until some course complications which led us onto different trails.

A bunch of riders followed me the wrong way down, but we merged back with the course later, and although the trails we rode were slightly faster, the finishing order was still the same as when we made the wrong turn. After the race it hurt so much to breathe after such a hard effort and all the dust (just like nationals). I was happy with my performance because I gave it my all in both the pedaling and the technical sections. Getting 2nd place in a pro race couldn't have been better. We followed the race by doing two more runs on the jump trails, another full day of lift accessed dh riding on our enduros, and then doing a sweet trail ride on some awesome semi-secret trails in Truckee.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

2010 National MTB Championships Wrap Up

Team Results Tally:
  • 5 National Titles
  • 13 Podium Placings
  • 23 Top-10 Results
It's been an incredible three-week Team Camp, culminating with a hugely successful National Championships. I've always told the kids that my main requirement of them is to do their best - regardless of where they finish in the races. The team far exceeded expectations as they raced with heart, determination and class. Congratulations to the entire Whole Athlete Team for a hugely successful 2010 Nationals Campaign and thank you to all who have contributed to making it happen!

Full Top-10 results found here:

Day 21 - National Champs Day 4 - Yet another title!

And multiple podium finishes..

Women Open
1st Helen Drumm

Junior Men Open
5th Max Houtzager
6th Taylor Smith
10th Joe Yoham

Junior Women Open
2nd Kate Courtney
4th Victoria Yoham

Short Track
Women Open
2nd Helene Drumm (That's in addition to two titles!)
7th Sofia Hamilton

Short Track Junior Men
6th Alex Stevenson
10th Nick Newcomb

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Day 20 - National Champs Day 3 - Three more titles!!

It was the Whole Athlete Team Coaches' turn to race, and race they did, taking three National Titles!

Dario Fredrick - Cat 1 40-44 Champion

Helene Drumm - Cat 1 40-44 Champion

Abbie Durkee - Cat 1 35-39 Champion

Friday, July 16, 2010

Day 19 - National Championships Day 2 - Victory!!

Top-10 Team Results
Kate Courtney Cat 1 15/16 National Champion!

Cat 1 17/18 Girls
2nd Sofia Hamilton (Named to Junior World Championship Team)
6th Victoria Yoham

Cat 1 17/18 Boys
3rd Tony Smith
4th Will Curtis
6th Nick Newcomb

Cat 1 15/16
6th Taylor Smith

U23 Men
9th John Bennett

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Day 18 - Nationals Championships Day 1

Day 1 Results
1st Sven Beer Cat 2 17/18
6th MacKinzie Stanley Cat 2 15-18 Girls

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Day 17 - Pre-ride and pre-ride some more...

The highest point on the course at over 9500 ft. -
And the surrounding peaks soar far above this spot!

Today we got to know the cross-country courses well, learning every climb, corner and technical section. The pros and junior Cat 1 racers do multiple laps on a short course that stays fairly close to the Sol Vista Park headquarters to provide a more spectator-friendly event. That precludes them from riding some of the bigger climbs and fun trails on the higher slopes of the ski park, which the amateurs get to do on their course. The consensus among the team is that the courses are both fun and challenging, which should produce true national champions.

It may be summer in much of the country,
but it seems like springtime here in the high mountains.

I knew there would be no time to look around and enjoy the subtle beauty all around come race-day, so I took my time on the pre-ride...

Monday, July 12, 2010

Day 15 & 16 - Transfer to Granby - Pre ride

After a much needed rest day that included a reasonably short drive from Colorado Springs (~6500 ft) over an 11,000 ft. pass to Granby (~8500 ft.), we settled into our house for the final week of our 2010 National Championship quest. The location couldn't be better as the race venue is right down the street and the setting magnificent. We are perched in the Rockies surrounded by mountains, trees and trails.

Meal time!

View from our deck

2010 Nationals Super D Course Preview from max houtzager

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Day 14 - Stage race, check!

Tony Smith 2nd, Will Curtis 3rd - Cat 1 17/18

Bobby Zidek 1st - Cat 2 17/18

Steve Cherry 2nd - Cat 1 50+

Dario Fredrick 1st - Cat 1 40-49

Not Pictured:
Taylor Smith 3rd - Cat 1 15/16

Meanwhile, Max Houtzager wins the Junior Expert All-Mountain Downieville Classic while Coach Abbie Durkee takes 4th on a hardtail!

CTS International Stage Race Full results:
Cat1 Jr M 17-18 Individual GC after Stage 3 XC
1 4:25:14 180 TRUJILLO Skyler 1 0:00:00 Fort Collins CO 284764
2 4:26:39 0:01:25 191 SMITH Tony Whole Athlete San Rafael CA 205657
3 4:26:46 0:01:32 186 CURTIS William San Rafael CA 233101
4 4:39:42 0:14:28 181 GAFFNEY Lewis Angel Fire NM 247368
5 4:42:34 0:17:20 187 NEWCOMB Nicholas Nicasio CA 258299
6 4:47:53 0:22:39 185 YOHAM Joseph San Rafael CA 257687
7 4:58:32 0:33:18 188 PREDUM Riley San Anselmo CA 280050
8 5:04:52 0:39:38 189 STEVENSON Alex Berkeley CA 257710

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Day 13 - Race Success in Two States

The pictures are worth more words than I have the energy to write, so enjoy!

Today's team race results from Downieville, California and Colorado Springs:

Downieville Classic XC
Women Expert
1st Kate Courtney
2nd Sofia Hamilton
4th Abbie Durkee
16th Victoria Yoham

Junior Men Expert
1st Max Houtzager

Women Sport
2nd MacKinzie Stanley

CTS International Stage 2 XC
Cat 1 17/18
2nd Will Curtis
3rd Tony Smith
5th Zach Valdez
6th Nick Newcomb
7th Joe Yoham
8th Colby Pastore
9th Riley Predum
10th Alex Stevenson
11th Roman Brockley

Cat 1 15/16
3rd Taylor Smith

Cat 2 17/18
1st Bobby Zidek
2nd Sven Beer

Cat 1 40-49
1st Dario Fredrick

Cat 1 50+
3rd Steve Cherry