MSC dead, dieing, or evolving?
I've noticed a big delay in getting the MSC schedule/info online, and wonder what you think about;
1. No Rabbit Valley Race, replaced by the local run race at 18rd? Multi lap vs 1 big loop?
2. Only 4 venues for x/c racing, and DH?
3. Lack of info about this year's series, even though last year we were due to start the series in 2 weeks?
4. Is the the death throws of the one great CORPS, argueably one of the premier state/regional series in the nation?
5. With all the great races in Co, who cares about the MSC anymore?
1. Loved the big out and back spring race in the desert, can't get as excited about 3 laps of 18rd.
2. I gave up in ski hill circuit races a long time ago. That's an outdated format used only for World Cup competition, most races I do now are one loop epics.
3. Bigfoot is off the back? Never to return to the front of the group. Sad, but reflective of the change in racer interests.
4. Evolve or die, sorry to see this once great series shrivel on the vine, I wonder if ski area expenses, and red tape had something to do with the decline of venues?
5. The MSC was once the do all, be all for Colorado mtbike racing, but now with the RME series, and tons of local well run races, the MSC became less of a good value for my competitive budget, I always felt the MSC races had great courses, organization, and competition, but when I can get the same race product from a local small event, or a well run endurance series, it's hard to commit to an 8 or 10 race series that offers little more than prestige.
Anyone else have these concerns? Or comments on the present and future of the MSC?
I did the Keystone race last year for the first time. I was shocked at how small the race was. We have bigger turnout for the local short track races in Fort Collins. For what it cost me $65 I don't think I will do it this year.
I never really considered the prices to be a "good value". Generally fun and generally well run events for sure but damn expensive imo
well back in the day.........................
my no sense
who cares xc racing is ghey all the way no matter how you take it
going round and round at some resort for 65 bucks is how I wanna spend my weekend and what little money I have.
Anybody remember riders del norte? Now that's bike racing.
I know some of the guys who work at MSC (and I am in NO WAY quoting them) but it comes down to the resorts. It is hard to work with multiple resorts; they all have their own agendas and with the low snow year they are all on a tight budget.
I think MSC did a good thing, narrow it to a few venues and (hopefully) do a great job at those. As a DH racer it is hard to find a series. WP and SV hold some great races, but all the same mountain. Not that I don't like those races, sh!t Sol Vista has the best race vibe I've ever been too, but it is cool to travel to different places.
For DH'er it's hard to miss Angel Fire, Crested Butte and Snowmass. AF is techy, CB is flowy and Snowmass is just wide open. 3 different style courses on the same series, that's a god damn good series.
I did the super D at Sol Vista last year and was not impressed. I paid the race entry fee and then they made me pay for a lift ticket to get to the top to race. The MSC website stated that the lift ticket was included in the entry fee, just like DH but the resort wouldn't give me a lift ticket. I spoke with the MSC people and they said there was nothing they could do. That was my first and last MSC event I will ever attend. I know it is tough to put on these events but the cost is getting so out of hand. As a comparison, the Oregon Super D series cost the same and you get free lunch, free beer, plus if you podium the prizes are quite good, not just some crappy medal. The biggest difference is that in Oregon they are trying to grow the series and think about the participants first. MSC thinks about their paycheck first everything else doesn't matter. Proof is by Ithnu's comment. The resorts had a bad year so you would think they would welcome any income from mountain biking. It seems to me MSC has their own agenda and it doesn't include growing the series.
Keystone had lower attendance than most of the other races for some reason.
Originally Posted by pulser
Crested Butte had over 900 racers, according to MSC. And, I'd believe it after being there.
I think the MSC could be a little more organized, but it seems like most of the arguments in here are blowing things out of proportion. For instance, Keith has been posting a lot of info about the 2012 series info on the MSC forum (which sbsbiker has also posted/complained in); and this info was posted earlier than last year. Additionally, how about this new thing they're doing called Enduro racing?
I think that reports of the MSC's demise are a little premature. When your primary vendors for providing venues are ski areas, you're a little at thier mercy. Particularly with the growth of mountain affiliated bike parks. As Ithnu says, they're consolidating the DH venues and are expanding into enduro style racing.
While Big Loop XC is great (at least that's what the really fit tell people like me that aren't fit), few ski areas are equipped for this kind of course, and it works against the image they're seeking. Even some of the big loop stuff is tough, anybody remember how many times I-70 was closed do to weather on Rabbit Valley weekends the last 3 years?
I've gottten to see some of the volume of work that Bigfoot has put in this winter with USFS and other land managers to get the enduro racing off the ground, and it's taken a boatload of work (and paperwork) to get this done.
There's no doubt that they're a little off the back information-wise, but all of the really impoirtant stuff has been up for awhile on the MSC website (dates, times, costs), some of the details of point structures, etc. that could use a little work.
There is no doubt that evolution is occuring. Racers have more choices in where and what type of racing they wish to do. Recreational riders have a lot more choices. Bigfoot is trying to balance new growth and keeping their core riders happy, not an enviable task
I'm glad to see local races becoming more prevalent, and I see how MSC is trying not to duplicate those efforts. But it's inevitable that strategy will cost them the folks who can't travel 3+ hours from the Denver area for a race. It will be interesting to see what the race scene looks like in another few years.
Best of luck to all the promoters out there.
2011 Mountain States Cup DH
- Angel Fire, NM 273
- Crested Butte, CO 393
- Telluride, CO 227
- Keystone, CO 231
- Snowmass Village, CO 119
- Snowmass Village, CO 172
- Sol Vista, CO 213
Everything goes in cycles. Interest waxes and wains. The CORPS series rose, had it's heyday (which I was a part of) plateaued, then declined. Organizers move on (it's often not a hard choice, when you figure out all the hours you put in with your payday you figure out you'd be better off washing dishes) and different generations have different interests. The funny thing is though, all too often what fell out of favor a few years ago can suddenly become cool again and a whole 'nother cycle begins.
so you are saying i will be cool again in a few years?........Nice
Hey. if it's true for me, it can be true for you too.
Originally Posted by hitechredneck
The Fluorescent Colors Rule. ^^
Originally Posted by zrm
You can judge a fads lifespan by the appearance of fluorescent colors during it's epoch.
This is a good topic and healthy debate. I was asked feedback from one of the inside guys at MSC last fall about my sporadic participation, and interests/quests going forward.
The MSC is a good thing for our community. The promotion of rider, teams, junior development teams, kids, newcomers, etc is nothing but positive in the mountain biking community. I've made many friends with this scene, and have had great times as well. However, many of us had families along the way. Although it shouldn't change things, it will modify behavior and priorities.
I represent that 30-40 DH group that watched DH racing in in its infancy evolve into what it is today. I started with XC racing in college, but after 7 years of watching one spandex fight break out on a trail after another, it got old. XC also became less of a 'mountain bike' race, and more of a fitness race. I yearned for the 'all mountain, all everything' race. It simply went to the way of applied roadbiking. Not my thing. DH racing was on the up, and something new meant fun and something to learn.
The venues are what sort of killed it for me. I was able to drop a race and go to the others. With a family, it was harder to make Anglefire, Telluride and other far off destinations due to time and finances. It was one thing for me to go, tent it, or stay with teammates crammed in a condo, but when the whole family is involved, you now have hotel rooms, food, etc for 4, not one. All of the sudden the cost went to $700 totalled with everything. And i was asking my wife/kids to simply hang out while I rode all weekend (wife loves to ride too). One DH race for that price? no way.
I stuck to the local hills, racing the MSC in CB, Keystone, Sol Vista, Snowmass, etc. Venues that were closer and easily accessed or something I could pull a trailer within a reasonable distance.
I tried the Super D (not a fan of a mass start), thought that was my thing. Seemed to be applied XC on a moderate DH course. Not easy to pass. I got into the DS and 4X right about the time it was all being cancelled (this year). Bummer.
I raced the G3 (first DH stage race in the area) and loved it. It was very social and fun to see the progression of riders. 90 bucks got you 3 different runs, and it was a weekend of beer, food, friends and families.
Last year Winter Park hosted their Enduro DH. 5 races, one full weekend! That was a blast! I placed middle of the pack, but most of all, I had a blast with all my riding friends! there was a beer evening, food, fun, and the prizes? WOW! I did the Keystone MSC DH race... Whereas nothing changed (still fun), nothing had changed. Prizes were lacking (not that won any, LOL), the sponsors seemed to be pissy, and the reduced racers were somewhat of a shock.
When I see SRAM handing out parts, fixing broken this and that for racers, I feel like the racers were appreciated. One of our junoir kids broke his deraileur; he had limited funds and didn't think he could afford a new one. The SRAM guys hooked him up. I got 1st class service on my fork and brakes. The prizes they handed out were far above and better than I've ever seen it for amatuer racing. WP enduro, SolVista TripleDhip, Red Bull 12 hour races... lots of riding and racing for you buck.
I think MSC has taken notice to the rise of DH enduro racing. The Whole Enchilada challenge is where I'll be spending my MSC money. With the fact that I can't make one of the MSC races (and their not allowing any drops this year), whats the point of spending lots of money going to other places. I love what MSC does for the sport, but being a dad, husband with limited time, I'd like more of a weekend adventure than just a 5 minute DH run. One run isn't worth it; a bunch of them are.
Anything USACycling gets their greedy little hands on eventually turns to ****.
There is almost too many choices for mountain bike races now. When you have to decide between 2 or 3 on certain weekends it isn't surprising when the race that is further away, much more expensive, and less rewarding gets cut out of your schedule.
(sounds harsh and sorry to anyone offended)
Promoting any given race is a lot of work. Kudos to those that can do it.
I hope MSC is simply evolving. Like new products, people are always looking for something fresh and new sometimes.
I'd like to have a local hill promote evening races. WP sort of did this, but it would be nice to have keystone or WP do the same thing this year.
We have a local evening XC series that attracts 100-200 people per race. I think they've tried DH and super D but the numbers didn't make it worth it.
Originally Posted by IndecentExposure
The older I get, the faster I was.
Punch it, Chewie.
I see your popcorn man and up you popcorn cat.
Originally Posted by Full Trucker
Does popcorn cat actually EAT the popcorn?
There are a few pieces scattered on the ground so it looks like the little guy gave it a try.
Originally Posted by SkaredShtles
The cat eats mushrooms, clearly.
So, why not just go ride with your friends?
Originally Posted by IndecentExposure
Personally, I raced many, many years ago when the CORPS was big and did well, but it was always obvious who the really good, natural, chance to go pro guys were and eventually I just realized I would rather spend my money on other things, plan a weekend trip somewhere and ride with my friends.. and racing was cheap then..
Now I spend my money on one big Pacific NW trip every year, may be a trip to Jackson etc..
Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy - Benjamin Franklin
Good point. And I do ride with my friends!
Originally Posted by billybobzia
Racing for me makes me up my game, get better and locate skills I never had. Last year I took a little turn coaching because that became a serious weakness for me. Training (or whatever I call it ) for me is good, I set a few goals, work hard to get there, race a little, and then am a better rider in the end. Racing is fun and I measure myself to my peers when its an all out run. Yeah, they're quicker than me, which means there's something out there to improve.