MTB news & racing round-up for December 3, 2008
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Edited by Sue George
NUE Series set for fourth season
By Sue George
NUE Series women's winner Cheryl
Sornson (Trek / VW)
Photo ©: Jonathan Bruck
The National Ultra Endurance (NUE) series, a popular American series
of 100-mile mountain bike races, will return for its fourth season in
2009. Organizers announced the complete schedule, again with eight events
as in 2008.
Winners will be tallied from the best four event results compiled by
each racer. Ties will be broken at the finale in California.
Unlike some events and teams which are facing sponsorship shortages for
2009, the NUE will carry forward its current support. "All 2008 sponsors
are returning in 2009," said one of the co-organizers, Ryan O'Dell,
who also promotes the Mohican 100 in Ohio.
Jeff Schalk and Cheryl Sornson (both of Trek / VW) won the men's and
women's categories of the series in 2008.
NUE Series for 2009
Saturday, April 25: Cohutta 100 (Tennessee)
Saturday, May 30: Mohican 100 (Ohio)
Saturday, June 20: Lumberjack 100 (Michigan)
Saturday, July 18: Breckenridge 100 (Colorado)
Saturday, August 1: Wilderness 101 (Pennsylvania)
Saturday, August 15: Fool's Gold 100 (Georgia)
Sunday, September 6: Shenandoah Mountain 100 (Virginia)
Saturday, September 12: Tahoe-Sierra 100 (California)
Davison's breakthrough season
By Dave McElwaine
Photo ©: Dave McElwaine
After six years racing as a professional mountain biker, this season
the affable Lea Davison (Trek / VW) started to see results that seemed
to her a long time in coming. With her accomplished teammate Sue Haywood
retiring from World Cup and national series racing scene, the 25-year-old
Davison is the most likely heir-apparent to fill the void.
Davison first raised eyebrows earlier this year when she won both the
D races at the Sea Otter Classic in April. Although some top racers
were away at the UCI World Cup round in Houffalize, Belgium, the wins
boosted Davision's confidence. She followed with several podium appearances
throughout the National Mountain Bike Series (NMBS).
At the World
Championships cross country race in Val di Sole, Italy, in June, Davison
surprised many with a 19th place finish in a field stacked with Olympic
hopefuls. In fact, she finished one position ahead of Mary McConneloug,
who represented the US in Beijing, China.
Racing in July on her home course at Mt. Snow, Vermont, amid deafening
cheers from her large cadre of fans, she finished third in the short
track behind Katie Compton (Spike) and Olympian Mary McConneloug (Kenda/Seven).
She also beat the nearly invincible Georgia Gould (Luna Women's MTB Team).
What followed her performance was a sort of "coming out party"
with her supporters on hand.
In Bromont, Canada, Davison then notched her first top-ten World
Cup result. Horrific, deeply muddy conditions must have reminded Davison
of racing in her native Vermont. The course was so treacherous that multi-time
World Champion Gunn-Rita Dahle Flesjaa opted not to race rather than risk
injury that could affect her Olympic goals.
Davison also clocked an impressive third overall at the inaugural American
Mountain Classic stage race held at 11,000 ft. in Brian Head, Utah.
Finally, in her proudest accomplishment of the season, she won the NMBS
short track there ahead of one of the best racers of that discipline,
Katerina Nash (Luna Women's MTB Team).
Growing up racing
The well-liked, good-humored Davison often jokes around and seems to
take disappointment in stride. She has inspired her peers and up and coming
young racers with her infectious smile and friendly personality.
"One thing that I really love about Lea is her level of enthusiasm.
As, I was winding down my career, she really infused her youth, energy
and work ethic into mine. She is humble, but she doesn't hide it when
she has done well. She pumps her hands in the air, gives a big smile and
then says how stoked she is," said teammate Haywood.
"She makes everyone want to share her joy when she does well,"
said Haywood. "You will never see Lea throw her bike in a tantrum
like some racers her age. She is a great sportswomen and a real role model
for younger riders."
Lea Davison rides at the World
Photo ©: Rob Jones
Davison credits her sister and training partner, Sabra, with much of
her success. Growing up in a small Vermont town, the pair often raced
against the boys because the women's fields were small. In local races,
the two were determined to beat the boys. "They used to start us
with the boys, so catching and passing them fuelled the fire," said
"Lea and I have always been competitive. Whether it was sidewalk
chalk or running around the neighborhood when we were younger, it was
a battle to the death," she said of her relationship with Lea.
"There are two things that our coach can say that get Lea and me
going fast: 'Work together or attack each other'. I have never, in my
life, pushed harder on the bike then on workouts that I've done with Lea."
Growing up, the Davisons raced as the only women on the 17-person Team
Devo junior squad. Coach John Kemp motivated everyone by telling the boys
that if the girls clocked faster laps, the boys would owe them a meal.
"Lea ate well that season," joked Sabra.
Read the complete
2009 Canadian National Mountain Bike Calendar announced
Matthew Green (Rocky Mountain/Different
Bikes) racing in the Canada Cup at Mont Tremblant
Photo ©: Marek Lazarski
The Canadian Cycling Association unveiled is 2009 National Mountain Bike
Calendar with twelve events which will host top mountain bikers from Canada
The Canada Cup cross country season will be one of the best in the recent
years with six events on the calendar, five of which are UCI category
one (C1) sanctioned. More than CAN$40 000 will be awarded during the series,
making it one of the most lucrative domestic series in the world. The
season will open in Baie-St-Paul on May 17 and the final will conclude
in Bromont on July 5.
The Canada Cup downhill will feature three events, starting in Mont-Tremblant
on May 24 and concluding in Sun Peaks on August 23.
Two World Cups will return in 2009. Mont-Sainte-Anne will host its usual
round on July 25-26, and Bromont will return for its second consecutive
running on August 4-5.
The Canadian National Championships will be held prior to the Mont-Sainte-Anne
World Cup. New for 2009, 4X national titles will be presented for the
first time in Bromont on July 4. The cross-country event will follow in
St-Félicien, on July 11-12 and the downhill at a venue to be confirmed
on July 18-19.
2009 Canadian National Mountain Bike Calendar
May 17: Canada Cup / Coupe Canada - Baie-St-Paul, Quebec, XCO (C1)
May 23-24: Canada Cup / Coupe Canada - Mont Tremblant, Quebec, XCO (C1)/
May 31: Canada Cup / Coupe Canada - Oro-Medonte, Ontario, XCO (C1)
June 13: Canada Cup / Coupe Canada - Edmonton, Alberta, XCO (C2)
June 20: Canada Cup / Coupe Canada - Canmore, Alberta, XCO (C1)
July 4-5: Canada Cup / Coupe Canada - Bromont, Quebec, XCO (C1)/ DHI (C2)
/ 4X (CN)
July 11-12: National Championships, St-Félicien, Quebec, XCO (CN)
July 18-19: National Championships, TBC, Quebec, DHI (CN)
July 25-26: World Cup, Mont-Sainte-Anne, XCO/4X/DHI (CDM)
August 1-2: World Cup, Bromont, Quebec, XCO/4X/DHI (CDM)
August 17: Canada Games, Brookvale, Prince Edward Island, XCO (NE)
August 23: Canada Cup / Coupe Canada , Sun Peaks, British Columbia, DHI
For more information, visit www.canadian-cycling.com/cca/racing/nat_calendar.shtml.
O'Shea takes step toward Olympic dream
Katherin O'Shéea on her
way to a win
After her best finish to date, Bendigo's Katherine O'Shea has her sights
firmly set on the next Olympic Games in London. The 29-year-old business
analyst won the cross country race at the Australian national mountain bike
series round held in the Gold Coast hinterland on Saturday.
Photo ©: Evan Jeffery
The former softballer switched to mountain biking just three years ago
after being selected for a development program for mountain bikers. The
"Dirt Roads to London" program aims to prepare Australian female
riders for the London 2012 Olympics.
O'Shea praised the program aimed at building Australia's depth in women's
cross country. "It's been fantastic. It got me into the sport and
it's great having the other girls around to encourage you to turn up to
She will head overseas to race internationally next year and when asked
if her long term goal of making the London Olympics was now closer she
said, "Yeah for sure. Bring it on."
In the race Saturday, O'Shea defeated series leader Jodie Willett and
Couple takes downhill double
The winning couple, Chris Kovarik
and Claire Buchar.
World ranked downhiller Chris Kovarik won the Australian National Downhill
Series men's race on the Gold Coast on Sunday while his fiancée Claire
Buchar took top honors in the women's race.
Photo ©: Evan Jeffery
The 30-year-old Australian Kovarik was fastest in both the qualifying
and final rounds. "I qualified fastest to see where I was at which
always takes a lot out of you," Kovarik said. "At the top, I
was pretty confident I could pull it off if I got through those slippery
After heavy rain the day before, riders had to negotiate a slippery rocky
section near the top of the 1.7 km course. "For everyone it was treacherous,"
said Kovarik. "You couldn't get through there with your feet on!"
Despite the wet conditions, Kovarik praised the course saying it was as
good as any on the international World Cup circuit.
Buchar's win came despite a fall n the slippery forest section. "I
was trying to go a bit too fast," the Canadian Buchar said. "The
conditions are really unpredictable."
Joshua Button and Baker rounded out the men's podium while Leigh Douglas
and Caroline Buchanan completed the women's top three.
The third round of the national series will continue in Geelong in two
See Cyclingnews' full coverage of the Australian
National Mountain Bike Series round two.
Trek World Cup team signs Moseley
Tracy Moseley celebrates a World
Cup win in front of the home crowds.
Photo ©: Luke Webber
The new Trek World Cup team announced its final signing for 2009. Tracy
Moseley, 29-years-old and formerly
of Team Kona, became the team's sixth rider. As the only female rider
on the team, she joined downhillers Justin Leov and Andrew Neethling,
as well as cross country racers Lukas and Mathias Flueckiger and fellow
Brit and near neighbor Liam Killeen.
Moseley is one of just five downhill riders, male or female, to have
won 10 or more World Cup races in their career. Her wins span from 2002
to 2008, with the two most recent victories at the rounds in Fort William,
Scotland, and Canberra, Australia.
"I am really excited to have this great opportunity," said
a happy Moseley. "The new bike, the team support and my teammates,
will make a big difference to me. I'm also happy to have two great guys
to ride with as I believe that is important for my ongoing development
as a racer."
"It's a thrill for us to be able to announce Tracy in our line up,"
said Team Director Martin Whiteley. "We've been excited about the
idea of having three downhill riders and even more so to be back in the
game of women's downhill racing... . It's clear that women's World Cup
racing will continue to get more competitive and exciting."
"Tracy showed everyone what she can do on the physically demanding
and pedaling courses like Fort William and Canberra this past season,
and looking at 2009's venues, she will be well positioned for a great
season with us."
Moseley will race a Session 88 downhill bike for her new team.
Rotorua declines option to bid for marathon worlds
Due to the rising cost of event fees, New Zealand's Rotorua, which hosted
the 2006 UCI Mountain
Bike World Championships, will not bid for a chance to hold the UCI
World Marathon Championships in 2012. The popular mountain biking city
on the North Island unsuccessfully bid for the 2006, 2009 and 2010 world
marathon championships, but did not submit a bid for 2011.
"When we last bid, for 2010, the marketing rights fee was 50,000
[Swiss francs] (NZL$76,000)," said bid organizer Dave Donaldson to
The Daily Post. "We went in at 100,000 and missed out but
now, for 2012, [the UCI] hiked the price up to €490,000 (NZL$1.15
million). We quickly came to the conclusion that we couldn't entertain
the event at that up-front cost, particularly in the current [economic]
When Rotorua hosted the 2006 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships, with
a week of cross country, downhill and 4X events, about NZL$400,000 was
required to secure the rights. The same bid would now cost about €1
million ($2.35 million).
However, the city will host the fifth and final round of the UCI Trials
World Cup in September of 2009.
Man dies in New Zealand mountain bike race
Police identified local racer James Stuart Kennedy as the person who
died after crashing during a mountain bike race in New Zealand. Kennedy
was racing the Moa Mountain Bike Challenge in the Kekerengu Valley "when
he failed to take a slight right hand bend on a downward section and went
over a bank," according to Radio New Zealand.
Cyclingnews extends its condolences to the family of Mr. Kennedy.
Costa Rica to host pre-Pan-Am event
Round one of the Endurance Pipasa MTB Series will take place in Patarrá,
Costa Rica, just one week before the Pan American Championships next spring.
The UCI category C1 event is scheduled for March 15 and will serve as
a warm up for the Continental Championships as well as a chance to collect
extra UCI points for racers looking to improve their starting positions
at World Cups.
Racers will tackle a 39 mile (63km) single-lap event with 6,100 feet
(1860m) of climbing. The race is being promoted by Rafael Pacheco of Eventos
Deportivos. Pacheco has been promoting events for seven years.
For more information, visit www.mtbalfa.com.
Trips for Kids partying at 11th Annual "Brews, Bikes and Bucks"
Trips for Kids will host its annual "Brews, Bikes and Bucks"
party at the Broken Drum Brewery (1132 Fourth Street, San Rafael, California)
on Sunday, December 7, from 2 pm to 6 pm. The popular event will feature
local beer, raffle prizes, food and a chance to hobnob with famous mountain
Now in its 11th year, this fundraiser has become a much-anticipated tradition.
Legends likely to attend include Gary Fisher, Tom Ritchey, Joe Breeze,
Ned Overend, Scott Nicol, Jacquie Phelan, Otis Guy, Ross Shafer, Charles
Kelly, Mert Lawwill and Chris Lang.
"Many of us take for granted the pleasure of getting out in Marin
parks and wild areas and enjoying a bike ride. That simple experience
isn't available to everyone, though - especially to a number of vulnerable,
inner-city kids," said Marilyn Price, Trips for Kids founder. "Our
goal has always been to help set that straight a little bit. This fundraiser
lends a big hand by supporting our entire program."
Admission is free and all proceeds will benefit Trips for Kids, the award-winning,
Marin-based non-profit that has improved the lives of disadvantaged kids
through trail rides and earn-a-bike programs for more than 20 years.
For more information on the event, raffle items and tickets, visit www.tripsforkids.org.
Twenty four hours Sydney registration opens
Organizers announced registration is open for the Twenty Four Hours Sydney
race scheduled for February 14-15 at the Del Rio Riverside Resort in Wiseman's
Ferry, about 1.5 hours north west of Sydney.
"Expect a pure twenty four hour race," said says Rocky Trail
Entertainment's Martin Wisata. "The track for the race will be finalised
in the coming weeks, some parts even newly built, completing a totally
new mountain bike track in the Sydney-area. The transition zone and timing
will be located directly at the Del Rio resort, which we have hired out
for the entire weekend." The resort is set on the lush meadows of
the Hawkesbury River with lodging ranging from camping to deluxe cabins.
The race will run from Saturday at noon to Sunday at noon for solo athletes
and teams of two, three, four, six or ten.
For more information, visit www.rockytrailentertainment.com.
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