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  1. #1
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    Ontaro Cup #7 - Horseshoe

    Has anybody heard if there will be pre-riding at Horseshoe this coming long weekend.

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    Yes! Just saw a facebook post thanking all the volunteers,etc that came out to help get it ready & that it just needs riding!

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    Hope to get over there at some point this weekend.

    Glad to see your going to make it out. Duntroon was a blast!

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    I'm hopefully heading up on Saturday
    Strava made me do it....

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    Take a course map with you. http://www.superflyracing.com/wp-con...-Horseshoe.jpg

    I pre-rode last weekend, and it was generally an excercise in getting lost. It was made worse by the enduro course having been set up, which was not the same as the XC O-Cup course. Though once you get it in your head to: (i) turn left and then right at the ponies; and (ii) follow the small square signs that say XC O-Cup, it is possible to make it around without getting lost. Hopefully there have been improvements on wayfinding made in the last week.

    Oh, and get ready to get your climb on.

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    Quote Originally Posted by smarty View Post
    Take a course map with you. http://www.superflyracing.com/wp-con...-Horseshoe.jpg

    I pre-rode last weekend, and it was generally an excercise in getting lost. It was made worse by the enduro course having been set up, which was not the same as the XC O-Cup course. Though once you get it in your head to: (i) turn left and then right at the ponies; and (ii) follow the small square signs that say XC O-Cup, it is possible to make it around without getting lost. Hopefully there have been improvements on wayfinding made in the last week.

    Oh, and get ready to get your climb on.
    yeah, it appears that it is the name of the game... can't believe they could stuff so much climbing in one course.
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    It's a championship course. There should be a lot of climbing. There should also be technical rock gardens, technical descents and tight, flowy, fast singletrack.

    Sounds like a great course! Have fun!

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    Superfly has marked the course with his own markings now, it has been changed a bit from what folks were riding this past weekend.

    With the nature of Horseshoe it can't be fully taped and marked till race weekend but there should be enough markings to get you around the course now.

    And yes it is a very physically challenging course, but its hard for everyone thats the point right?

    Some rain in the forecast for this weekend will help out a bunch with the looser spots.

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    Quote Originally Posted by swabag View Post
    Superfly has marked the course with his own markings now, it has been changed a bit from what folks were riding this past weekend.

    With the nature of Horseshoe it can't be fully taped and marked till race weekend but there should be enough markings to get you around the course now.

    And yes it is a very physically challenging course, but its hard for everyone thats the point right?

    Some rain in the forecast for this weekend will help out a bunch with the looser spots.

    Thanks for your help with the course setup.
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    [QUOTE=osokolo;10641392]Thanks for your help with the course setup.[/QUOTE

    Ill put up signs at the rock gardens I built/modified so you know who to curse/thank

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    Question: how dies it compare to the Heights of Horseshoe course from the old days? Is there as much climbing as the old course and is it technically easier or harder?

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    Quote Originally Posted by aerius View Post
    Question: how dies it compare to the Heights of Horseshoe course from the old days? Is there as much climbing as the old course and is it technically easier or harder?
    Same amount of climbing but Id say its tougher cause its steeper and singletrack, I remember the heights to have more doubletrack climbing which is always a little mellower.

    overall I think the heights had more doubletrack along the north end of the course, where the resort side is actually 95% by time singletrack. Which adds another degree of toughness cause your always "on" there's no real mellow sections. Which also makes it tough for passing/lapping. Its my one beef with the course, Sean calls me old and says i should switch to road when i bring it up. Fair enough,

    Technically, ill say a little tougher with some of the rock gardens and the DH run thats included. But balanced out cause the tread as sandy as it is isn't the powdered sugar consistency like at the heights.

    Also the heights is all pine trees, many of which were planted, the resort side is a lot of hardwoods which gives the forest a different feel as well.

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    Sounds awesome! I'll be up at my friend's cottage at Horseshoe that weekend, probably won't be racing though, I'm still waiting for a bunch of stuff to heal after getting clipped by a car in early August. Will probably pop by and do an easy practice lap or 2, and if I feel up to it I might just strap on a number plate.

  14. #14
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    It sounds like a really great course, wish I could be there. Unfortunately I busted my frame last week while at Grundy Lake PP and won't have the replacement in time for the race. Completely separated the head tube from the rest of the bike-- fortunately while ascending a technical rocky section-- could have been a lot more painful had I been descending. Serves me right, it was a hiking only trail.

    Bought a nice light aluminum unbranded Kinesis frame from BikeIsland and will hopefully have everything I need to build up the new bike the weekend of the Championship. Finally graduate to disc brakes, my old frame was a bit of a relic (2002 Giant Yukon) and didn't have disc brake mounts at the back.

    This was my first year racing the O-cup series and I really enjoyed it-- loved the technical and challenging course the Superfly team put together. For me, lots of room for improvement next year, will hopefully avoid the mechanical issues I had this years (3 flats in 3 separate races, and major chainsuck in another.) Currently sitting 4th in my category though (MS Male 40-44) so can't really complain.

    Have a great race everyone, see you all next year.

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    Well, three laps in the books this morning on the course...Very interesting would be a way to describe it. It's rather different in many respects from a lot of the other courses. That's been noted I think, so I will try not to be redundant.

    The first portion of the course is the longest section of doubletrack until heading into the woods. Once in there, there's some climbing followed by a series of dips and short descent switchbacks. Rather fun stuff I would say. There's a lot of this on the first half of the course with a few punchy climbs that are manageable too. A couple of rocks, one garden at the top of a short climb that are doable, so restricted to the 1:30PM racers.

    Getting past the halfway point is where the pain really kicks in. There's a doubletrack grunt littered with horsesh!t that's followed by another couple long lactic acid inducing lengthy climbs. One of which the entry is gravel and getting off is almost inevitable. That said, I ran into one of the guys that works there and he was telling me they will be fixing that with some harder surface material to make it reasonable. There are one or two other borderline step off the bike sections due to the loose ground and lack of traffic on the course. I can't say this is a downer because I believe it will correct itself with traffic and some love. Following these climbs are some descents. They are quite fun despite the shortness as compared to what it takes to get up before going down.

    The last portion of the course going mostly down hill being lots of fun. Very near the bottom, there is a berm that goes left with a big hump coming out of it. Come out of the berm on the very left, or get back on the saddle or slow down or eating it OTB could be inevitable. Following that there are a couple of challenging rock gardens coming out of the trees at the bottom of the hill near the chalet.

    Overall, it's definitely a Provincial level course. Everyone's "A" game will be required to race it. There aren't many passing areas as the doubletrack is short, so picking spots will be key. The course should only get getter with another week of riding on it. And I would expect some distance added as it's under 6km currently. Slower with all the climbing though! It's a little fresh in a few spots, but will make for a fun day out there next weekend. Getting out there preriding it will help the course!
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    Thanks mtbmeister for the detailed report. I will try to get out there on Saturday or Sunday.
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  17. #17
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    That has to be one of the toughest courses I have ever ridden. Those who Di not preride will be at a huge disadvantage
    Strava made me do it....

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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    That has to be one of the toughest courses I have ever ridden. Those who Di not preride will be at a huge disadvantage
    Going to need to get a better perspective here...

    Would you rather.....

    Race Albion in the rain with the Green Monster, and Goats Path thrown in on a
    singlespeed

    Or ride O-Cup #7 Horseshoe with gears?!?!?!

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    Perspective?

    Quote Originally Posted by broadwayline View Post
    Going to need to get a better perspective here...

    Would you rather.....

    Race Albion in the rain with the Green Monster, and Goats Path thrown in on a
    singlespeed

    Or ride O-Cup #7 Horseshoe with gears?!?!?!
    Comparing this course to Albion is like comparing watermelons to grapes. Even if you include the Green Monster. I don't ride singlespeed, but would welcome the Green Monster twice per lap as well as the Goat path compared to this course. This is a totally different animal than Albion and I am surprised you would venture to compare them. Comparing this course to Duntroon or the CC course at Hardwood would equalize things a lot more.

    Oh, and I must also mention that I am a huge fan of Albion too and race there weekly most of the year. So no bias here, just trying to ensure that there's an accurate comparison, which this is not.

    This course has some climbing that needs love still. I rode a few laps Friday, and will do four more tomorrow. I hope that things are packed down in a few spots that weren't on the first trip to not have to step out of the pedals. Which I and many others have complained about.

    Looking forward to four more laps tomorrow!
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    My post was just a joke hombre!

    I know unglued loved singlespeed and hates gears

  21. #21
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    Scott, I have a bike with gears now. Horsehoe with gears is way tougher, technically and physically to the difficult parts of Albion on SS. I can ride everything at Albion even without gears and squish. There's at least one climb on the provincials course I was unable to make it all the way up, even with my 2x10 drivetrain. The course is completely humbling.

    The bad news is that I may not be able to ride next weekend at all. We are getting a new puppy on Saturday and Mrs Unglued is none too pleased that I am planning on racing the next day.
    Strava made me do it....

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    Ontaro Cup #7 - Horseshoe

    Hey Barry...that's weak! It's not like your having a child, it's a puppy! As a suggestion, start planning your race calendar in the early spring, then getting new dogs will fall on another weekend. I am just sayin'!


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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbmeister View Post
    Hey Barry...that's weak! It's not like your having a child, it's a puppy! As a suggestion, start planning your race calendar in the early spring, then getting new dogs will fall on another weekend. I am just sayin'!


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    You're preaching to the choir, but there will always be other races and Mrs Unglued is the only wife I have..,
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    You're preaching to the choir, but there will always be other races and Mrs Unglued is the only wife I have..,
    This is where you use the puppy as an excuse to buy the Krampus and that dog attachement thing that BCD has.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    You're preaching to the choir, but there will always be other races and Mrs Unglued is the only wife I have..,
    I understand the dilema, but my advice is to pay attention to the wife. Even the most understanding wives run out of patience at tome point. I am speaking from experience.
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  26. #26
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    And regarding the course, it is very hard and not single speed friendly. I am torn between doing it with gears and doing it single speed. I might pre ride next weekend with a single speed and see how that feels. I hate too much walking on a course.
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    Quote Originally Posted by serious View Post
    I understand the dilema, but my advice is to pay attention to the wife. Even the most understanding wives run out of patience at tome point. I am speaking from experience.
    Darn right...I know which side my bread is buttered. Besides, Tom, you have met my wife so know she is pretty cool, right?
    Strava made me do it....

  28. #28
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    The only advantage to riding this course SS is that you get to sleep in a little on race day
    Strava made me do it....

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    What a COURSE!!!!

    Reading all the reviews I was scared a bit from this course but after todays pre ride I think this is one of the most exciting course of all....

    The climbs are though as they should be but the rewards are awesome; I'm a chicken on downhills but I really enjoyed coming down!!!!

    Not sure I will be fast on it, but sure i will have a ton of fun next Sunday!!!

    Hopefully conditions will stay as it is right now, nice and tacky, and won't become too sandy....

    Did I say GREAT COURSE???

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by serious View Post
    I understand the dilema, but my advice is to pay attention to the wife. Even the most understanding wives run out of patience at tome point. I am speaking from experience.
    so based on evidence that is available to me, your stomach poisoning was actually a warning from the wife who lost patience?

    just asking?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    Darn right...I know which side my bread is buttered. Besides, Tom, you have met my wife so know she is pretty cool, right?
    She is cool and cute too!
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  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by osokolo View Post
    so based on evidence that is available to me, your stomach poisoning was actually a warning from the wife who lost patience?

    just asking?
    Nah, she left me a year ago, although we remain good friends. Unfortunately, the food poisoning was all too real. But I made it to the Eager Beaver 100 and I should be present for the Provincials.
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    Super fun course. lots of steep grinds with loose soil which at race pace should be just about the hardest course to pass or just hold position at times. Watch out for the log jams on the steepest parts , I'm sure there will be plenty of stalled riders which will bring everything to a halt. The three rock gardens are the only real tricky/dangerous section as they are raised and decline in slope but are doable

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    Race etiquette question. I know I will be one of the slower riders in my category and the faster guys in the next category will be coming up fast. Normally its easy enough to either move over or get out onto doubletrack as quickly as possible to let others get by. This course seems a lot harder to do as there are some pretty long sections of singletrack where I really cant move over without having to get off the bike. What is the proper thing to do here. I don't want to hold others up if possible but I don't really want to have to get off the bike and pull it off the trail to let people past as I am racing too

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    If i can see the riders from my cat ahead of me or i know tbey are not far ahead i will try to pick up the pace intill i can move over. If I am feeling dead I just pull over and let them by. But at the same time there is nothing worse then letting somone by and they are slower then you on the next single track section.

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    I didn't get a chance to pre-ride this weekend. Does anyone know if it can be ridden "unofficially" before Friday/Saturday? I got no issue with paying the fee; wanted to go today but the weather got in the way.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by ljohnston9 View Post
    Race etiquette question. I know I will be one of the slower riders in my category and the faster guys in the next category will be coming up fast. Normally its easy enough to either move over or get out onto doubletrack as quickly as possible to let others get by. This course seems a lot harder to do as there are some pretty long sections of singletrack where I really cant move over without having to get off the bike. What is the proper thing to do here. I don't want to hold others up if possible but I don't really want to have to get off the bike and pull it off the trail to let people past as I am racing too
    I generally find that people can pass as long as you slow down just a bit at the right place. That is what I do. I look for a bit of space and warn the person behind that I am about to let them go. It happens in a few seconds. Then I try to chase them if at all possible.

    If I race in singlespeed, I occasionally have to do that since we start before all other categories, but if I race in the 50-55 category, I will be catching some racers and don't look forward to it. At the Nationals it was a bit frustrating. But that is racing and as long as everyone remembers that we are just having fun, it will be ok.
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    I rode it last Friday morning and would have been happy to pay too. But there isn't anyone there at the shop until 11AM. I did three laps, during which I ran into a guy that has done some work on the course. He said that if the "patrol" guys see you, they will ask if you've paid and signed a waiver. To which I had no problem with. You should be fine to ride it, just be prepared if asked to pay and sign the waiver.
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    Thanks for the replies. Calling back to the approaching riders to let them know I will move over asap is a great idea.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbmeister View Post
    I rode it last Friday morning and would have been happy to pay too. But there isn't anyone there at the shop until 11AM. I did three laps, during which I ran into a guy that has done some work on the course. He said that if the "patrol" guys see you, they will ask if you've paid and signed a waiver. To which I had no problem with. You should be fine to ride it, just be prepared if asked to pay and sign the waiver.
    Thanks for the reply. The way the week has gone, I'm going to go up tomorrow when they got the official pre-ridding open.

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    A couple of quick course questions for those that know. I pre-rode last sunday and some stuff we weren't sure off.

    1. near the beginning of the long downhill, there was a spot where you could either cut right down the hill or go around the bend and decide between going up on the rocks or around the back. Which option is in course

    2. is the only difference between the 11:45 course and the 1:30 course the two rock garden options at the top of climbs where 11;45 goes around and 1:30 goes over

    3. are the three consecutive rock gardens at the bottom of the last downhill part of all courses

    4. on one of the big climbs, there were signs saying they would fix the corner. what happened there

    thanks for any help. I cant ride the course again before race.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ljohnston9 View Post
    A couple of quick course questions for those that know. I pre-rode last sunday and some stuff we weren't sure off.

    1. near the beginning of the long downhill, there was a spot where you could either cut right down the hill or go around the bend and decide between going up on the rocks or around the back. Which option is in course

    2. is the only difference between the 11:45 course and the 1:30 course the two rock garden options at the top of climbs where 11;45 goes around and 1:30 goes over

    3. are the three consecutive rock gardens at the bottom of the last downhill part of all courses

    4. on one of the big climbs, there were signs saying they would fix the corner. what happened there

    thanks for any help. I cant ride the course again before race.
    I can only answer 3 and 4.

    3 - It's part of all except the 9am race. There will be a heavy penalty alternative which wasn't setup earlier today, but my understanding is it will involve going down the hill, then up again before rejoining.

    4 - I didn't ride last week so not sure of the changes. The referred signs were still there today. Part of the climbs now have what appeared to be brick or concrete slabs on the ground right after those signs. The grip was marginal as the surface had some loose stuff over it.

    Was a little disappointing to find the course not ready earlier today. On the first lap we stopped a few times because we had no idea if we were still on course. Would have went another time if I knew they were still working on the finishing touches.

  43. #43
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    For those thinking of heading up this morning, Chico posted on their Facebook page that pre-riding is closed until noon. It's raining heavily in Barrie at the moment & has been for some time

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    It was pouring in Owen Sound this morning aswell. Hopefully the rain lets up so I can get a lap in.

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    I'm 5 minutes from the course, rain stopped about half an hour ago. I'll be looking to get some laps in for fun later today.

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    Thanks for the updates. Don't want to drive all the way up from Kitchener to find the course closed. Damn you rain!!
    High on Life

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    Quote Originally Posted by ljohnston9 View Post
    A couple of quick course questions for those that know. I pre-rode last sunday and some stuff we weren't sure off.

    1. near the beginning of the long downhill, there was a spot where you could either cut right down the hill or go around the bend and decide between going up on the rocks or around the back. Which option is in course

    2. is the only difference between the 11:45 course and the 1:30 course the two rock garden options at the top of climbs where 11;45 goes around and 1:30 goes over

    3. are the three consecutive rock gardens at the bottom of the last downhill part of all courses

    4. on one of the big climbs, there were signs saying they would fix the corner. what happened there

    thanks for any help. I cant ride the course again before race.
    Thought a little back yesterday about 1 and 2.

    1 - If we are thinking of the same section for going around the bend, then the non-rock option required you going to the right. Both ways were open yesterday, but again, based on many parts of the course still being setup, it's anyone's guess if that's how it will stay.

    2 - I'm in the 11:45 race so I paid less attention to the 1:30 features. I can for sure remember 2 parts marked for the 1:30 only: one was a pile of rocks and the other was a big boulder about 2 feet high off the ground. For whatever reason I think there might have been a 3rd "pile of rocks" for the 1:30 races but I could be wrong.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    Scott, I have a bike with gears now. Horsehoe with gears is way tougher, technically and physically to the difficult parts of Albion on SS. I can ride everything at Albion even without gears and squish. There's at least one climb on the provincials course I was unable to make it all the way up, even with my 2x10 drivetrain. The course is completely humbling.
    Did a couple laps earlier today with one of my friends, our heads damn near exploded by the time we made it up the 2nd big climb up the ski hill and we had to take a breather at the top. But we did successfully ride up all the climbs. Mind you, we were using big chunky tires on our bikes and had 3x8 & 3x9 setups with nice low gears, no way I could do it with a 2x10 and XC tires.

    With that said, BEST O-CUP COURSE I'VE EVER RIDDEN!! It was definitely old school and I'd say it's even better than the old Heights of Horseshoe course. Sweet singletrack with lots of roots & rocks to keep you on your toes, twisty dips & rollers, and the 2 long DH sections on the ski hill were just gravy. You could make some serious time on the DH sections with a dropper post.

    As for my ride, I killed it on the last DH section since well, I've ridden DH there several times and I knew the trails. The first long DH on the ski hill almost shot me off the cliff since I went in hot and it was not what I was expecting, couldn't completely squash a hump and the bike went airborne with the trail curving away to the wrong side. Barely managed to get the tires back on the ground in time to save it, would've been toast without my Conti Trail Kings. On the other hand, there's no way I'd be ballsy enough to go that fast with XC tires. Serious fun.

  49. #49
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    This one is a killer.... That dam hill. I bought a super cheap x9 2x10 for my wolftooth conversion, budget is not there for a ring sonI through the 2x10 on and made it work. The ratios are not good for this type of course lol. 28t granny is just not going to cut it for me. I guess i will throw the 3x10 back on tonight.

    Still raining where i am. Hopefully it has stopped at horseshoe.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by aerius View Post
    Did a couple laps earlier today with one of my friends, our heads damn near exploded by the time we made it up the 2nd big climb up the ski hill and we had to take a breather at the top. But we did successfully ride up all the climbs. Mind you, we were using big chunky tires on our bikes and had 3x8 & 3x9 setups with nice low gears, no way I could do it with a 2x10 and XC tires.

    With that said, BEST O-CUP COURSE I'VE EVER RIDDEN!! It was definitely old school and I'd say it's even better than the old Heights of Horseshoe course. Sweet singletrack with lots of roots & rocks to keep you on your toes, twisty dips & rollers, and the 2 long DH sections on the ski hill were just gravy. You could make some serious time on the DH sections with a dropper post.

    As for my ride, I killed it on the last DH section since well, I've ridden DH there several times and I knew the trails. The first long DH on the ski hill almost shot me off the cliff since I went in hot and it was not what I was expecting, couldn't completely squash a hump and the bike went airborne with the trail curving away to the wrong side. Barely managed to get the tires back on the ground in time to save it, would've been toast without my Conti Trail Kings. On the other hand, there's no way I'd be ballsy enough to go that fast with XC tires. Serious fun.
    how did the course handle the rain? rock gardens slick?

    how did the big pointy rock treat you? was it wet?
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