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  1. #1
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    Nationals Great race

    Just got back from Nationals. It was a really cool event. There are a lot of people that worked really hard to make it happen and I would say it was a big success.

    I found sun valley to be a great venue. It is big enough and capable of holding the event; yet, small enough the race and event was all around you. If you went to a restaurant or store, there were always racers and their families around. The other activities around sun valley are stellar. (biking, hiking, rafting, dining...)

    I heard a few complaints while I was there. Things such as the long steep single track climb on the amateur loop. I talked with the person coordinating volunteers and they are interested in constructive feedback to make next year even better.

    I would like to see ride sun valley continue after 2012 when nationals moves to the next location. I would put it on my list to go for a race and a great weekend.

    A few highlights: It was really cool to see Ned Overend race in the pro race. His name has been a fixture as long as I've been mountain biking. The top few winners (Todd Wells, Georgia Gould...) in the two pro races should be competing at the upcoming Olympics. I got to watch them race today. Demi Moore and Ashton Kutchur watched both the pro men and women's race; but, it was way cooler to have watched Ned, Todd and Georgia race. I placed 3rd in my race; cat 1 next week.

    I hope everyone that attended had a great time and a good race.
    Oh sh!+ just force upgraded to cat1. Now what?
    Best thing about an ultra marathon? I just get to ride my bike for X hours!

  2. #2
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    One thing I found odd was cyclingnews.com, a Australian based website has coverage, yet Velonews or Singletrack.com, based in the US, have yet to post anything other than a twitter feed that has some post alluding to the results.

  3. #3
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    That's because Cyclingnews uses stringers like Dave McElwaine@trailwatch.net for photos and Sue George for a brief report from the event, or in the case of the Canadian Nationals and World Cups, Rob Jones from CanadianCyclist.com so they get info from the race sites. Most other cycling websites rely on someone to complete a package and update it when they come into work on Monday morning.
    I'm a member of NSMBA and IMBA Canada

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  5. #5
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    Wish I could have been there...looks like a great event! Good work to all that raced...

  6. #6
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    Nationals

    Congrats to AlliKat on the strong showing.

    I would echo many of his thoughts. Overall, it was a wonderful few days of racing at a well thought out venue and a very accommodating town of Ketchum. With over 400 miles of trails the area is unsurpassed. Furthermore, there are six bike shops in the town of Ketchum and each one was very helpful and able to assist on the spot.

    USAC did a very good job of organizing the event. The emails, flyers, and information packets were done well and were very helpful. There were no waits, the staff and volunteers were knowledgeable and helpful.

    If there was one disappointment (other than my personal performance) it would be the single track climb on the amateur loop. For the vast majority of racers it ended up being a train of hikers due to the bottle neck and technical nature of the climb.

    I have videos and photos of the event but I need to do some editing and down sizing to post them.

    Stay tuned!
    BoiseBoy

  7. #7
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    Did you say Ned Overend? It was a fun weekend, I wasn't so fond of the singletrack climb either, but the descent was fun, and the rock fall was way scary exciting. A great weekend overall. I do hope they come up with a different course next year just for variety. I wonder how difficult it would be to race on some of the existing trails there around Ketchum? That would be pretty cool rather than racing on the ski area.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Nationals  Great race-ned.jpg  

    Last edited by mtnbkrid; 07-18-2011 at 11:07 AM.
    Ride the bike.

  8. #8
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    I keep thinking about it and while I love the other trails, it would be really challenging both from legality (NFS, sun valley ski area and other ownership) and logistics of having a base area etc.

    Anyone get good pics from the weekend. I looked on the teami4.com site and they don't have thursday. I saw a bazillion cameras while riding but haven't found a pic yet.
    Oh sh!+ just force upgraded to cat1. Now what?
    Best thing about an ultra marathon? I just get to ride my bike for X hours!

  9. #9
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    Check the team 14 site again. I ordered a couple of shots. He got a good one of me coming down the rock fall, and one on the rock garden. As for getting permission from the FS or BLM to race on existing trails, it seems to me that USA Cycling could negotiate to get the ok. Sit down, develop a plan, look at everything and hammer out an agreement to race on Adams Gulch for an example. Just an idea for something different.
    Ride the bike.

  10. #10
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    I only see 118 photos and they start on 7/15. I emailed them a few days ago and no response. Guess they don't want my money. With 1000+ racers, they should have at least 2000 photos
    Oh sh!+ just force upgraded to cat1. Now what?
    Best thing about an ultra marathon? I just get to ride my bike for X hours!

  11. #11
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    That was a fun race. I liked the climb but wish there were more opportunities to pass. Good job guys, a lot of locals did well, pretty cool.
    I think you need the ski area for the race to accomodate all the sponsors and spectators. How cool was it to sit by the lodge, drink beer and watch everything? If it moved to Adams Gulch or elsewhere you will be getting beer from the, hopefully friendly, neighbor.
    If you do something often enough it tends to define you.

  12. #12
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    Great venue, but I had a terrible race. I raced Cat 2 and flatted in the first prologue lap in the first rock garden section. I pinched. It was just bad luck because I had ridden the section 3 times during my warm up and never had an issue. Time to go tubeless.

    After I changed the flat I managed to pass a couple other riders, so at least I didn't end up dead last. I got passed by the whole field during my little incident. So I ended up walking up most of the singletrack climb behind the womens class and the older mens age groups.

    If I hadn't flatted I would have been top 10 certainly, probably top 5.

    I'm glad I went and eventhough my race didn't go as planned I had a great time and now I'm familiar with the area for next year. Fantastic venue with a great staff.

    Well done to all who qualified and raced!

  13. #13
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    I wouldn't say the race was great. Even though I did well.

    The town, surrounding area, and trails (not race course) were stellar.

    Didn't make any difference but I would love to know what rankings USAC used for callups. #fail
    Try to be good.

  14. #14
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    I raced as well, and thought the town was great! However, the amateur xc course was a bit disappointing. Actually the worst I have ever raced on for Nationals compared to Mt Snow, Durango and Mammoth, which is all that I have gone to. The narrow gulch had only one suitable trail (the descent). The long steep climb did not allow for proper passing/riding. I have no issue portaging a short climb, but to be forced off the bike to walk for close to a mile b/c of traffic is not my idea of amateur racing. The trails in the area seemed fantastic. Too bad the race did not showcase that. I would go back to ride the area any time, but not to race that course. I am loosing faith in USAcycling or maybe racing. IMBA has made available such such great trail science, yet race promoters to not seem to get it.

  15. #15
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    I raced as well, and thought the town was great! However, the amateur xc course was a bit disappointing. Actually the worst I have ever raced on for Nationals compared to Mt Snow, Durango and Mammoth, which is all that I have gone to. The narrow gulch had only one suitable trail (the descent). The long steep climb did not allow for proper passing/riding. I have no issue portaging a short climb, but to be forced off the bike to walk for close to a mile b/c of traffic is not my idea of amateur racing. The trails in the area seemed fantastic. Too bad the race did not showcase that. I would go back to ride the area any time, but not to race that course. I am loosing faith in USAcycling or maybe racing. IMBA has made available such such great trail science, yet race promoters do not seem to get it.

  16. #16
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    Well finally back to reality.

    Really enjoyed Ketchum and somehow got pretty lucky picking out a hotel about 3 weeks before the event and being right near the venue. Last year I had a sweet condo above Sol Vista and aside from dropping off a bunch of stuff before my race (hubby wasn't really able to get around as well last year as this one ) and was worried about driving and parking at the venue, but we were just up the road, so spun down with a collapsible cooler and floor pump!

    Ketchum was sweet; we ate out there 3-4 times and visited both markets (plus Albertson's down the highway). Seemed well-stocked throughout which is nice. Restaurants were good and fun, though we didn't enjoy much of the night-life I wouldn't say.

    Pro course was cool. I prefer more the rolling courses, but can't complain about the massive ski hill climb and singletrack descent. Everyone had the same course, and unlike the amateurs there were I think probably max 35 women out there so it was fine. Never had any bad issues with traffic. I passed 1-2 on the inside of switchbacks and had someone pass me (sadly she soon after lost her bike off trail!).

    Wish I had been able to pre-ride Super D more than Sat night, but just didn't work out with eating (why is it always at 6 pm?).

    Looking forward to going back next year.

    Not sure on the altitude thing since I felt fine the entire weekend (er, aside from being totally WORKED Sat afternoon after climbing that hill 5 times!). I'm chalking it up to a) mental, b) hydration, and c) pretending not to care! :P

    Hope everyone else had a blast, and hopefully the amateur course will either include the ski hill or more passing opportunities next year. Didn't ride the course, but heard it was fun to ride.


  17. #17
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    Good to hear good feed back about the pro course. I did not ride it, but it looked like a better option than the amateur climb. I felt really bad for the cat 2's when I watched them all bunched up and walking. Hopefully they will put something better together next year.

    If anyone is interested, I put some video together of some of the riding in the area:

    http://gallery.me.com/ellenandart#100516

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by whybotherme View Post
    Didn't make any difference but I would love to know what rankings USAC used for callups. #fail
    They had a paralell parking test behind a closed donut shop 2 towns away......

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by the mayor View Post
    They had a paralell parking test behind a closed donut shop 2 towns away......
    dammit! i always miss out on those!

    they announced that they were going to call up the defending champ and top 4 ranked riders. the list that they called up didn't include the defending champ, or the #1 ranked rider so you are probably correct as to how they did callups.
    Try to be good.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by whybotherme View Post
    dammit! i always miss out on those!

    they announced that they were going to call up the defending champ and top 4 ranked riders. the list that they called up didn't include the defending champ, or the #1 ranked rider so you are probably correct as to how they did callups.
    The call up procedure and qualifying race info were clearly written on the bottom of the 3rd Port-aPottie from the left in the lower parking lot.
    You could have easily snorkled into the blue chemicals and brown trouser trout.....and gotten a much better call up.
    You can only blame yourself....

  21. #21
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    I'm going to catch a lot of flak for saying this, but here goes anyway. The venue/volunteers/race officials did a good job of hosting the race, but the courses, both Pro and Amateur sucked. After talking to many people there, I am aware to many of you straight up/straight down is XC racing, it's not where I come from. Our races are varied, some rocky and climby, some tight and twisty, some that favor huge legs and lungs, but they are mostly singletrack, and they all have some element of fun in them. The thing that may make us different is every Texas race course/venue is also frequented by mtb'ers riding for recreation, and willing in most cases to pay a day use fee for that. I can't imagine anyone coming to the Bald Mountain courses to do that. After riding both courses on Tuesday, I imagined the amateur races would have lots of long conga lines of riders pushing their bikes uphill, and there was a lot of that. In addition, the manmade rock gardens were just silly, adding hard for the sake of being hard. For the first time since oneday national championships were started, XC was separate from Downhill, and USAC had the opportunity to think outside the box, instead we got the same old/same old ski resort up/down races at altitude. They should rename these the "Mountain States Climbing at Altitude National Championships."
    What upsets me the most is that in a conference call when the venue was first announced, the USAC personnel responsible for making that decision, told me flat out, "it's in a ski town, but the races will NOT be held at the ski resort." Obviously that didn't happen. I did get some scuttlebutt from a variety of locals, even got to meet the mayor, and it seems there were some politics (not really a surprise) affecting things. In a nutshell, the money behind the ski resort dictated that it be held there, despite some popular feeling that showing off some of the area's much better trails would have been preferable. Bikeshop people were all almost apologetic and offered me all kinds of advice on where to ride around their town to showcase where THEY ride. And I did that, rolling out of my lodging for the next three mornings for 2-4 hour rides in the mountains around town on some really stunning stuff. I had a wonderful trip, including some stuff in Durango and Cortez on the way out, and I loved the town of Ketchum itself. The townspeople want the race to come back and want to make it better for the participants so maybe some changes will happen.
    I think I have the right to say these things. I'm the current president of the Texas racing association, have promoted races and served on its board since 1998, and have raced myself since 1997. We are USAC's representative/affiliate, and one of our executive board members has been on the USAC board for years and has served as president of it. Depending on which statistics you look at, we're either the #2 or #3 biggest group in the US, by number of licensed riders and by race attendance. We must be doing something right and yet fewer than 20 racers from Texas bothered to go to Idaho, as the deck is stacked against us. I wish for just once USAC would try something different, seek out a less remote venue that doesn't automatically favor a certain racer profile. Road Nationals have been held all over the country, proving that anywhere with a trail system could be a candidate. Sorry to be so curmudgeonly, I'm really a tireless advocate for racing and the character and camaraderie it builds. If any of you would ever like to come visit us, I will be more than happy to show you the ropes.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbscott View Post
    I'm going to catch a lot of flak for saying this, but here goes anyway.
    I don't think you should catch flak for your opinions at all, and they seem well-thought out and appropriate. The town/location was awesome, and I agree the volunteers/venue/race officials did a pretty good job (45+ mins for prelim amateur XC results, though? Top-5 to 10 would be nice to see as they are rolling in!).

    I can possibly see some issues with heat both in So Cal and somewhere like Texas in mid-July, and trust me, I understand dealing with heat as an acclimatization isn't all that dis-similar from altitude

    Have your promoters applied/petitioned and just not gotten the bid?

    I was pretty stoked on the area and also glad that we got out to ride both a ridiculous epic up near Stanley and a big view ride up Sun Valley Rd. Definitely heard from a lot of the locals as well not to consider the venue the best riding the area had, but that is true for most of the race venues we have here as well. Bonelli and Fontana are fine for maybe weekday riding, etc., but not somewhere I'd send someone coming here to visit and looking to ride our big/fun trails.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbscott View Post
    I'm going to catch a lot of flak for saying this, but here goes anyway. The venue/volunteers/race officials did a good job of hosting the race, but the courses, both Pro and Amateur sucked. After talking to many people there, I am aware to many of you straight up/straight down is XC racing, it's not where I come from. Our races are varied, some rocky and climby, some tight and twisty, some that favor huge legs and lungs, but they are mostly singletrack, and they all have some element of fun in them. The thing that may make us different is every Texas race course/venue is also frequented by mtb'ers riding for recreation, and willing in most cases to pay a day use fee for that. I can't imagine anyone coming to the Bald Mountain courses to do that. After riding both courses on Tuesday, I imagined the amateur races would have lots of long conga lines of riders pushing their bikes uphill, and there was a lot of that. In addition, the manmade rock gardens were just silly, adding hard for the sake of being hard. For the first time since oneday national championships were started, XC was separate from Downhill, and USAC had the opportunity to think outside the box, instead we got the same old/same old ski resort up/down races at altitude. They should rename these the "Mountain States Climbing at Altitude National Championships."
    What upsets me the most is that in a conference call when the venue was first announced, the USAC personnel responsible for making that decision, told me flat out, "it's in a ski town, but the races will NOT be held at the ski resort." Obviously that didn't happen. I did get some scuttlebutt from a variety of locals, even got to meet the mayor, and it seems there were some politics (not really a surprise) affecting things. In a nutshell, the money behind the ski resort dictated that it be held there, despite some popular feeling that showing off some of the area's much better trails would have been preferable. Bikeshop people were all almost apologetic and offered me all kinds of advice on where to ride around their town to showcase where THEY ride. And I did that, rolling out of my lodging for the next three mornings for 2-4 hour rides in the mountains around town on some really stunning stuff. I had a wonderful trip, including some stuff in Durango and Cortez on the way out, and I loved the town of Ketchum itself. The townspeople want the race to come back and want to make it better for the participants so maybe some changes will happen.
    I think I have the right to say these things. I'm the current president of the Texas racing association, have promoted races and served on its board since 1998, and have raced myself since 1997. We are USAC's representative/affiliate, and one of our executive board members has been on the USAC board for years and has served as president of it. Depending on which statistics you look at, we're either the #2 or #3 biggest group in the US, by number of licensed riders and by race attendance. We must be doing something right and yet fewer than 20 racers from Texas bothered to go to Idaho, as the deck is stacked against us. I wish for just once USAC would try something different, seek out a less remote venue that doesn't automatically favor a certain racer profile. Road Nationals have been held all over the country, proving that anywhere with a trail system could be a candidate. Sorry to be so curmudgeonly, I'm really a tireless advocate for racing and the character and camaraderie it builds. If any of you would ever like to come visit us, I will be more than happy to show you the ropes.
    no flak from my end.

    town/area/people were great. the venue was great as far as the amenities and atmosphere.

    the race was not so great. (not the fault of volunteers)

    USAC screwed up the callups, should have ensured that the courses were appropriate, should have provided prelim results in a reasonable time frame, etc.

    i had argued that "ski resort" courses were good for racing. this course was NOT. last year's amateur course was IMO much better. (i didn't race it, but i did ride it the day after the race at a slow pace)

    we all pay USAC to be our governing body and when they fail they need to know it. i hope they get feedback and understand.

    we also rode some amazing trails nearby. i don't think those trails would have made for great race courses either. they were awesome to ride on though!!!

    specific course feedback:

    regarding the artificial rock gardens, i am okay with that. i don't mind man made technical challenges. it impacted my race negatively that someone else couldn't ride it, but that is how it goes! i actually sort of liked the feature and it gave spectators an easy place to watch some action.

    single track climbs are good. technical is good. zero passing for that long is bad. there needs to be alternate lines every so often so that riders can pass the walkers. i love single track, but that first lap was a nightmare.

    the descent was interesting. i thought i would get held up more, but didn't. the skid lines on the inside allowed for aggressive passing when needed. i think it sucks that the trails go so abused, but that is what happens when you run that many racers down a trail that is loose and dusty (all courses used the same descent, Elite,CAT1, SuperD etc).

    in my opinion the descent could use some more challenges. something that allows separation between the riders (climbers vs descenders) is always a good thing on the descent. no time differential could be gained on that descent between a good descender and a fair descender.

    i rode the elite course as well. their climb was hard and afforded separation and passing. it allowed for better racing IMO. was it fun? NO. of course the same comments apply for their descent. the pro course last year was IMO much better.

    SuperD was interesting. i sort of liked it, but heard lots of complaints from seasoned superD racers that they wanted more technical challenges and less climbing. i don't disagree but i thought the course was okay, though i am biased as i feel i would likely have put myself on the box if not for the flat and crash.


    IMO USAC needs to play a more active role in ensuring that the race course is good. maybe have a "trail/race advocate" that works with whatever venue they choose. i understand that it is important for them to have nice restaurants to dress up and go out to, but the racers that pay their salaries need to have a good time at the races. not all of us are going out to the $60/plate dinner places in town in suits...
    Try to be good.

  24. #24
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    First off, I want to thank you for presumably volunteering and filling what can be a pretty thankless position. Running a racing organization can be a blast and a headache all at the same time. I wish you and your organization continued success.

    But... a person in your position should do a bit more thinking before posting.

    Comments like this are scattered throughout your post and really make so little sense to me that I have to bring it up.

    Quote Originally Posted by mtbscott View Post
    ..seek out a less remote venue that doesn't automatically favor a certain racer profile
    It seems that you're advocating "racing" on courses that only play to your strengths. Is that NOT what you're saying? If the Nats course isn't exactly like my favorite one from back home then I'm not gonna play!

    You're never going to find a course that doesn't favor some aspect. Too technical, to steep, too much climbing, too much altitude, too flat, too dry, too muddy, too rocky... ...etc.

    Your boys/girls from Texas didn't want to race because the "deck is stacked against us"? That is flat out lame and demonstrates how much you think of your racers. At least you could say that the costs associated with traveling to such a remote location are prohibitive.. but nope.

    While I definitely have my fair share of bones to pick with the nitwits at USAC, everyone is not out to get you!

  25. #25
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    what racer profile fit that course???
    The amatuer course sucked due to the no passing, and the pro course sucked because it was just a straight up service road climb. The DH part was fun but not challenging in the technical sense by any means. I hope they do a better job next year with course selection. I agree with most that they have a lot of trails that would work much better than the ones they used. The man made rock sections were pretty cool IMO. You may not generally have them out on the trails, but you had to have decent handling skills to get through them with ease. The whole altitude thing really gets me...is 7000ft that high(not even sure if the race went that high)? Jeremiah Bishop kicks a$$ and he is from freakin Virginia.
    I didnt really do very well in either race, but it was fun. I just need to figure out how to keep the rubber side down. I think the descent was so boring that I gave up and crashed. I would love to see a gnarly descent in a race. I climb fairly well, but I am a good descender and would love to be able to really make up some time there. All in all it was fun and good to put some faces to names. I enjoyed meeting some of you and I hope to see you next year.
    If you do something often enough it tends to define you.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by butryon View Post
    what racer profile fit that course???
    The amatuer course sucked due to the no passing, and the pro course sucked because it was just a straight up service road climb. The DH part was fun but not challenging in the technical sense by any means. I hope they do a better job next year with course selection. I agree with most that they have a lot of trails that would work much better than the ones they used. The man made rock sections were pretty cool IMO. You may not generally have them out on the trails, but you had to have decent handling skills to get through them with ease. The whole altitude thing really gets me...is 7000ft that high(not even sure if the race went that high)? Jeremiah Bishop kicks a$$ and he is from freakin Virginia.
    I didnt really do very well in either race, but it was fun. I just need to figure out how to keep the rubber side down. I think the descent was so boring that I gave up and crashed. I would love to see a gnarly descent in a race. I climb fairly well, but I am a good descender and would love to be able to really make up some time there. All in all it was fun and good to put some faces to names. I enjoyed meeting some of you and I hope to see you next year.
    if not for that mistake you likely would have taken my spot on the podium. you were certainly going very strong! it had to have been tough to flat out of superD as well. i was bummed to see you on the side. here's to both of us having flat-free races next year

    it was really nice to meet you and get to race with you.

    as for the altitude... you don't hear elites complaining about it because they spend the time to acclimate. i don't care where they are from, if they are going to race well at altitude they are preparing for it. those of us with day jobs don't have the same luxury. above 6k ft low landers see negative impact. during my race my legs felt great but i did struggle some with breathing. though if you look at the 30-34 podium the top two spots were taken by Socal lowlanders, with the top spot being Ty who i heard spent two weeks at altitude to prepare.
    Try to be good.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Walt Disney's Frozen Head View Post
    First off, I want to thank you for presumably volunteering and filling what can be a pretty thankless position. Running a racing organization can be a blast and a headache all at the same time. I wish you and your organization continued success.

    But... a person in your position should do a bit more thinking before posting.

    Comments like this are scattered throughout your post and really make so little sense to me that I have to bring it up.



    It seems that you're advocating "racing" on courses that only play to your strengths. Is that NOT what you're saying? If the Nats course isn't exactly like my favorite one from back home then I'm not gonna play!

    You're never going to find a course that doesn't favor some aspect. Too technical, to steep, too much climbing, too much altitude, too flat, too dry, too muddy, too rocky... ...etc.

    Your boys/girls from Texas didn't want to race because the "deck is stacked against us"? That is flat out lame and demonstrates how much you think of your racers. At least you could say that the costs associated with traveling to such a remote location are prohibitive.. but nope.

    While I definitely have my fair share of bones to pick with the nitwits at USAC, everyone is not out to get you!
    I can't speak for MTBScott. I do, however, live and race in Texas and have spoken to people who raced at nationals at Sol Vista. By racer profile, I suspect MTBScott meant racers who live/race at altitude or who have the available time/equipment to acclimate. Lots of racers obviously don't fit this profile. This is a legitimate issue especially given the fact that nationals were previously at Sol Vista.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by pixy View Post
    If anyone is interested, I put some video together of some of the riding in the area:
    http://gallery.me.com/ellenandart#100516
    Pixy:
    Well Done
    Thanks for posting the Vid.
    Just curious .... what kind of camera was that shot with?

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    FWIW, in an email to me from USACycling. .....USAC has already begun to meet with the course designers, Sun Valley Resort and Sun Valley Chamber and the race organizer to try and improve the course for next year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco83333 View Post
    Pixy:
    Well Done
    Thanks for posting the Vid.
    Just curious .... what kind of camera was that shot with?
    Just did not want racers to write off the area based in the amateur course. Good riding is to be had out there.

    I used a Canon PowerShot S95. It fits in my pocket and is light.

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    Not trying to stir the pot too much, but as far as the deck being stacked against Texans, is it the courses or the competition? I did meet a guy at race registration in Colorado today who was downgrading from pro to clydesdale. He was from Texas and did well in pro class there, but moved to CO in the past year and was tired of finishing DFL. Granted, the race is a part of a series that is known for a bit of sandbagging and has really tough fields (I generally finish about 10 places further back in sport class than in another series I race in), but that is a big downgrade to stay competitive. BTW, he looked like a very fit clyde and just barely 200.
    I'd think nationals should be designed like WC courses, so that the course favors riders that would do well internationally. My $.02, and I was not at Sun Valley, nor do I race at USAC races, generally.

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    Everythingh is bigger in Texas...

    Even the whining!


    When I was in Sun Valley I believe that I raced on the same course and at the same location as all of the other racers. There were racers from nearly all states including Florida which is even lower in elevation than many parts of Texas.

    Again, by your logic, that guy named Lance should have never ridden in the TdF with the montain stages and all.

    I spoke to many people and not one person cried about the elevation or an unfair advantage given to one subset of racers. If anything, I heard complaints on the design of the course, but not the elevation.

    It seems like the only population that is really whining about the elevation are the Texans. Well, when it comes down to it, you will never know how you would have performed at nationals because you didn't sack up and participate.

    If nationals are ever heald in Texas we will have to remember to complain excessively about their unfair, local advantage being that they live and train year round in the heat and the humidity. This will obviously give them an unfair advantage because we mountain people have snow on our trails over the winter keeping us from training. Likewise, we cannot train in the humidity given our geographic location, therefore, we should not go to the nationals in Texas, but we will whine a lot about it!
    Last edited by BoiseBoy; 07-31-2011 at 10:27 AM.
    BoiseBoy

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    Quote Originally Posted by Whambat View Post
    Not trying to stir the pot too much, but as far as the deck being stacked against Texans, is it the courses or the competition? I did meet a guy at race registration in Colorado today who was downgrading from pro to clydesdale. He was from Texas and did well in pro class there, but moved to CO in the past year and was tired of finishing DFL. Granted, the race is a part of a series that is known for a bit of sandbagging and has really tough fields (I generally finish about 10 places further back in sport class than in another series I race in), but that is a big downgrade to stay competitive. BTW, he looked like a very fit clyde and just barely 200.
    I'd think nationals should be designed like WC courses, so that the course favors riders that would do well internationally. My $.02, and I was not at Sun Valley, nor do I race at USAC races, generally.
    What's this person's name?

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoiseBoy View Post
    Even the whining!


    When I was in Sun Valley I believe that I raced on the same course and at the same location as all of the other racers. There were racers from nearly all states including Florida which is even lower in elevation than many parts of Texas.

    Again, by your logic, that guy named Lance should have never ridden in the TdF with the montain stages and all.

    I spoke to many people and not one person cried about the elevation or an unfair advantage given to one subset of racers. If anything, I heard complaints on the design of the course, but not the elevation.

    It seems like the only population that is really whining about the elevation are the Texans. Well, when it comes down to it, you will never know how you would have performed at nationals because you didn't sack up and participate.

    If nationals are ever heald in Texas we will have to remember to complain excessively about their unfair, local advantage being that they live and train year round in the heat and the humidity. This will obviously give them an unfair advantage because we mountain people have snow on our trails over the winter keeping us from training. Likewise, we cannot train in the humidity given our geographic location, therefore, we should not go to the nationals in Texas, but we will whine a lot about it!
    I have no reason to whine. I didn't go to nationals. Reread what I wrote: "This is a legitimate issue especially given the fact that nationals were previously at Sol Vista." I didn't say that nationals should never be held at altitude because Texans have a disadvantage. I pointed out that this was an issue because nationals were previously at Sol Vista. I also accept the fact that racers have different strengths and weaknesses and that each race course will suit a certain racer profile.

    By the way, Lance was able to train at altitude and race in Europe before he raced the TDF. Not every Texan is sponsored by a high dollar (not defunct) team such as Motorola or Discovery and can train at altitude. The Lance analogy is not on point.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoiseBoy View Post
    If nationals are ever heald in Texas we will have to remember to complain excessively about their unfair, local advantage being that they live and train year round in the heat and the humidity. This will obviously give them an unfair advantage because we mountain people have snow on our trails over the winter keeping us from training. Likewise, we cannot train in the humidity given our geographic location, therefore, we should not go to the nationals in Texas, but we will whine a lot about it!
    Why does everyone always mention having Nationals in Texas? I don't even think most Texans would want nationals here (because Nationals is required to be held in July).

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    Quote Originally Posted by COLINx86 View Post
    Why does everyone always mention having Nationals in Texas? I don't even think most Texans would want nationals here (because Nationals is required to be held in July).
    I believe Nationals can be in August or September if it does not conflict with other major races UCI/ worlds etc. I have raced Nationals in September 2004 or 2005 at Mammoth.

    I'll put this out there, just as info, and I am no expert, just an amateur racer : but for a one day event, all you need is a week to acclimate to altitude, and Sun Valley is actually lower than many other places. I am from NJ which is close to sea level, and have had good success with going out a week ahead and making a full vacation out of it. 2-4 days is worse for some people. I stay hydrated, eat a healthy iron rich diet, and get plenty of rest while there and avoid too much alcohol. You can rent systems to help you acclimate beforehand as well, but I have never gone that route.

  37. #37
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    THe national must be in July is a requirement from UCI

    if you look at the results from all the nationals(mtb) all are in July, so the racers can get points for the worlds, etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TJRosson View Post
    What's this person's name?
    Clydesdale is not an official classification for nationals. Some local series' may have a category for them but it is becoming fewer and far between... trust me.
    BoiseBoy

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoiseBoy View Post
    Clydesdale is not an official classification for nationals. Some local series' may have a category for them but it is becoming fewer and far between... trust me.
    I imagine most people on this forum know that Clydesdale is not an official classification. I asked Whambat the name of the person he met because I thought I might know him. Not sure what this question has to do with Clydesdale as an official classification. Maybe I'm missing something.

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    A few things come to mind here.

    1. I stopped going to national races years ago (championship or series), because the cost outweighs any perceived benefit for me. That and I refuse to purchase a license, since there is zero benefit for m in that.
    2. The course is the course, it is Mountain Biking, and if there is a mountain, use it.
    3. Promoters are in a rough position, getting private and public land management and owners permission for courses is daunting. It is not simple, saying, man there are great trails there, why can't we use them. There is a 200 yard section of sweet trail in Park City Utah that a homeowners association won't allow any events on, even though it would allow for a great hook up of sweet race-able terrain, it's no go. That is not the promoters fault.
    4. Call Ups? really? For amateurs with less than 30 in a category? Meaningless. It's nice to hear my name over the loud speaker, but unless there are significantly more racers (Like CX nationals), the cream will rise to the top.
    5. For any category but the Pro's the race is not a true national championship, in general, the fastest racers were not there, they were racing in their home series, for more meaningful rewards and more competition.


    USACyling is failing, Non Sanctioned series are thriving and growing. Endurance races (non sanctioned) are exploding. The same day as the XC national championship, several hundred of us were racing the non USAC Breckenridge 100, Which by the way, and east coast, sea level dweller won.

    UTAH XC races have more category racers than most national races not held in Wisconsin, BTW, Wisconsin pro's stay home instead of going to National races, because there is actual prize money at their local races. The new Utah State Championship Series will pay out of 15,000 dollars to the pro categories for 4 races in 2011. Meanwhile, USAC would make me pay 70 bucks to do one sanctioned race. No thanks, because that money doesn't go back to the sport.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by TJRosson View Post
    What's this person's name?
    I never asked his name, but looking at the results and based on his team kit and then googling his name, I have a good guess, I'll PM you it. I don't want to throw the guy under the bus on the forums. Looking at times, he would have been about 16th in sport 35-39 for what it's worth, since clydesdale is not a normal cat.

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by stupidbike View Post
    The new Utah State Championship Series will pay out of 15,000 dollars to the pro categories for 4 races in 2011.
    never mind... just looked up the numbers. thanks!
    Last edited by whybotherme; 08-01-2011 at 03:53 PM.
    Try to be good.

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    Baseline payout, yes, then all but 5 dollars of Pro entries go into the payout as well.

    So for the 50 miler.

    1750 Baseline for Men
    1750 Baseline for women

    @30 Pro men = Another 2250 (paid 10 deep)
    @10 Pro Women = Another 750 (paid 5 deep)

    the 5 dollars left per entry goes to the Huntsman Cancer Foundation.


    mtbracenews.com/media/articleimage/uploaded/img7175646678531275530.jpg
    mtbracenews.com/media/articleimage/uploaded/img67360747998018473.jpg

  44. #44
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    Finally finished my write up for Nats.
    Clint Claassen: 7/9-10 Downieville All Mountain Championships Race Report
    Great location, can't wait to go back next year!
    Thank you Lord for strength, endurance, and salvation.

    Race Reports & Updates
    Team Santa Cruz / Fox Facebook Page

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    I totally agree the amateur course sucked. My first nationals race and the worst course I've ever ridden in 20 years of racing. The course designers violated some basic rules of thumb for choosing a race course. The local Idaho races (Coyote Classic, Jug Mountain, hell even Barking Spider) are better courses.

    Obviously, choosing the town the start/finish where the race will be held is first priority and the race course is secondary. Years ago when Tomac and Overend were kings the race was held 20 miles up the road at Galena summit. They still have that race today, That course is way better. But too far away from all the restuarants, hotels and shopping for the liking of the Mayor of Sun Valley.

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