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  1. #1
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    Ashland Spring Thaw DH... I WON FIRST PLACE!

    ... in the Cat.2 50+... I must have intimidated my competition because only one other rider signed up and he didn't even show!

    I'm SO damn BADass!

    I'm interested in hearing anyone else's stories, comments, about the weekend and race(s).

    This was my first official DH race so I'm pretty happy with my results...
    Catwalk - 05:59
    BTI - 05:03
    Overall - 11:02

    That's with crashing 4 times, stopping to straighten my handlebars once, blowing a switchback then jumping out of the way while the racer behind me came rolling down and past me.
    I finished with my handlebars twisted off to the right (second time in the race), my seat pointing off the the left and slightly nose-up. Bill's comment when I rolled past the finish line... "Mark! Your bars are pointing the wrong direction!"

    I left with a first place medal (THAT was embarrassing! ), a bruised swollen knee and assorted lumps and missing skin elsewhere.
    Overall... the experience... ROCKED!
    I'm ready to do it again!

    I came up with a friend and his 12yo son. Matt's raced Spring Thaw before, last time was a couple of years ago. His son, Denny, got 2nd place in Cat3, doing really good in my opinion! Matt's a bit miffed he wound up 6th in Cat1 40-49, but he hasn't been racing, and he did crash once so I think that was pretty good also.

    We drove up Friday, got in two shuttle runs, then three more Saturday, followed by a run on Catwalk for Matt and the whole thing for him and his son before the race on Sunday.

    Denny nearly missed his start (had to drive him up at the last minute! Thanks Sue and the folks at the top!), so there was a bit of added excitement on race day.

    I had a damn good time and now I can look forward to more of the same down-the-line!
    Met some cool folks, spent time on my bike on a mountain I love riding, had a great trip with two friends.

    But now... the pressure is ON!
    I'll have to come back next year and defend my AMAZING win! LOL
    Where the hell are all the Cat2. Old(er) Guys? It just doesn't feel legit if I was the only one in my class!

    BRING IT ON YOU OLD FARTS!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Ashland Spring Thaw DH... I WON FIRST PLACE!-img_0920.jpg  

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    Ashland Spring Thaw DH... I WON FIRST PLACE!-img_0928.jpg  


  2. #2
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    Good Work!

    Remember, W>DFL>DNF>DNS

    You had a good time with friends, drew blood without permanent injury, and have a good story to tell. That my friend is Full of Win. The Medal is just icing.

  3. #3
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    Yeah... I suppose you're right... but, I'm really still just trying to win my papa's approval!
    Since he's 151 years old... I'm starting to think I might not have much time left to impress him... get the pat-on-the-back... crawl out from under his shadow... for once hear him brag about me,
    Dad: "My son finally did something legitimate, an award at a bicycle race pit against a bunch of kids!"
    Other Oldtimer: "WHAT? YOU'RE SON DEFENDED SOME ILLIGITIMATE WHORE WHO SPIT OUT A BUNCH OF KIDS? AN YOU'RE PROUD OF THAT BASTARD OF A CHILD? SPEAK UP MAN, I CAN'T HEAR YOU!!!"


  4. #4
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    wsmac, nice work!

    Are you the same guy running the Demos me and my buddy rode with at Blackrock? I had the green Santa Cruz...

  5. #5
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    Ashland Spring Thaw DH... I WON FIRST PLACE!

    Hoban, naw, haven't been to Black Rock yet. How'd you like Spring Thaw though?

  6. #6
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    wsmac - You DOG! I was running Cat 3 / 30+ (I'm 51) and I placed 2nd with a combined time of 9:18 - I knew I should have jumped up to Cat 2! The 30+ category in Cat 3 was intimidating, but i would have taken home the gold.... It was a great race either way, I pr'd both courses, and I caught up to the 20 something who started before me by the end of Catwalk - and he didn't crash.

  7. #7
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    AshMilo
    See... quit sandbaggin' and come on up to Cat2... I need the competition!

    I crashed, exclusively, in places I had no trouble clearing during my 5 previous runs down the hill (and to stretch that out even further... over all the runs down Mt. Ashland I've taken over the years, as far as I remember).
    Next year I won't let the guy in the red bikini underwear scare me like he did at the beginning! LOL

    I also blew that switchback on BTI that was armored with the cement slabs. Had no trouble on it until my last prerun Saturday, then again on Sunday. During the race, I had to climb up to the top of it to keep out of the way of the racer who caught up with me. Didn't want to slow down someone who knew how to ride.. hahaha!

    All-in-all, my times should have been better if I had kept my wits about me during the race, but next year is gonna be different!
    Watch out!

    Not sure if I'll be there for the Enduro... may be some changes in my schedule this Summer.

    Went out for my first post-race ride today... my DJ bike at two local skate parks.
    Right knee is still a bit sore, but I can pedal and drop into the bowls alright.
    Pumping around the parks was okay for a while, but I wouldn't make it racing down Ashland again today in this shape.
    No regrets though, and I had a great time thanks to Bill & Sue, and all the other workers/volunteers and racers there!

  8. #8
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Size:  111.5 KBThe spring thaw is always my favorite event of the year but being an Ashland local I guess it's nice to sleep in your own bed before a race haha...

    I won cat 1 19-29 last year with a busted up dh bike and 1 gear so I came in this year with a fancy new carbotanium superbike (Antidote lifeline) and a little more confidence then I probably should have... Practice is always fun but I went a little too quick and tried to enter BTI at full speed with minimal braking (ran a semi-slick too so I wasn't gonna be slowing down at all) and pretty much ragdolled down the side of the hill at 30mph - stood up with a very tweaked back and a lot of soreness and decided to call it a day...

    Went home and got very intoxicated - don't remember much... It was a good night I think, woke up on race day with a still sore and tweaked back but luckily had stumbled into my bed so I didn't wake up anywhere weird (I live on an orchard and waking up in the grass next to a fruit tree is an occasional occurrence...)

    Race day dawned and practice went alright, lots of my local lines had been found but a few sneaky outside lines remained untouched. Went off in my race fairly early, half because I knew the track would get chewed up more the later I left it and half so I could start behind my little brother (4 years of age difference meant we never could race together) - catwalk went good - left lots in the tank for BTI (one of my favorite trails) and still managed to win stage one. In awe of superbike at the moment because I spent the winter eating burritos and watching tv so have zero fitness.
    BTI didn't go quite as we'll - I ripped the top corners but lost the front trying to slingshot a sandy berm after the steep section, lost 5 or 6 seconds but picked myself up and continued. The semi-slick and 34 pound carbon dh bike saved me at the end and I managed to keep the power down all the way across the line. Again couldn't stop so almost destroyed the fencing at the finish.

    Because I had crashed we all packed up and were enjoying post race beverages when we went to the podium - stoked for Jason and Louis who got 3rd and 1st I think in jr x - Louis winning with a similar crash on BTI. Couldn't believe that I had won so was very surprised to stand on the top step with a crash and a tweaked back. Also had more good news when we learned that my buddy nick won BTI with what he called a cruiser cutty run, drifting all the corners and not really trying too hard, I think 3 seconds better than my time with a crash.

    Combined time I was 10 seconds slower on catwalk than last year but the trail has about 8 seconds more trail, finished with a 4.24 on Catwalk and a 3.23 on BTI for a combined time of 7.47 - was amazing and I can't wait to race next year!!! Hopefully Ill be in better shape though haha

  9. #9
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    Ashland Spring Thaw DH... I WON FIRST PLACE!

    Chup29,
    Thanks for your version of Spring Thaw. Hope you're healing up well!
    I love that mountain and the fact that it's only a 4 hour drive for me.
    I'm hoping to catch some of the work parties I figure will be working the upper section where they logged... We took the shuttle to the top that Friday and guided ourselves by the little pink flags all the way down four corners.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by wsmac View Post
    Chup29,
    Thanks for your version of Spring Thaw. Hope you're healing up well!
    I love that mountain and the fact that it's only a 4 hour drive for me.
    I'm hoping to catch some of the work parties I figure will be working the upper section where they logged... We took the shuttle to the top that Friday and guided ourselves by the little pink flags all the way down four corners.
    Yeah we did pretty much the same thing on Friday - although self shuttled - I was amazed we could get full laps in - Global warming for the win!!! Bill and Sue are amazing and if you ever want a guided tour of the watersheds other trails, they always help people out - awesome folks but bill is very hard to keep up with sometimes haha - took me years to beat him on a few of those trails and now he calls me at school to tell me how much fun Oregon is and how many seconds he's dropped off my times - glad you guys enjoyed Ashland! It gets better every year!!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by chup29 View Post
    ... now he calls me at school to tell me how much fun Oregon is and how many seconds he's dropped off my times - glad you guys enjoyed Ashland! It gets better every year!!
    HAHAHA... as I was sitting at the finish nursing my legs, Bill was polling some of the riders (especially the way younger dudes) for their times to which he would reply, "Pretty good! But I'm still ____ seconds faster than you!", with a smile on his face.
    Bill and Sue have always treated me really well and I appreciate that. Actually... other than "Charlie" booting my friend's 12yo son from the front seat of the shuttle once that weekend, everyone else has always been really cool to ride with at Ashland.

    My small crew envied the hometown advantage both for the race, and for just having such a great place to ride.

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