MTB news & racing round-up for July 19, 2008
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Edited by Sue George
Next NUE Series stop: Breckenridge 100
By Sue George
Josh Tostado, three-time winner
of the Breckenridge 100
Photo ©: Liam Doran
Breckenridge will host stop number four of the National Ultra Endurance
(NUE) series in Colorado. The fourth annual Breckenridge 100 will happen
Saturday, July 19, beginning and ending in Carter Park, and will feature
100 mile race over three unique loops including backcountry trails, doubletrack,
dirt roads and bike paths. Racers will cross the Continental Divide three
times, climb 11,000 foot passes and forge high mountain streams.
The men's race is shaping up to be a battle between local resident Josh
Tostado (Smith Optics) and Evan Plews (Capitol Subaru/Scott USA). Tostado
has won the event the last three years, holds the course record of 9:03:08,
and knows the high-altitude course well with his hometown advantage. He
is ranked 11th currently in the NUE series.
Plews, who is sitting in second place in the overall NUE standings, will
be looking for a win after a poorly timed flat a few weeks ago cost him
a chance at the US
Marathon National Championships, also held in Breckenridge on July
Josh Tostado, three-time winner
of the Breckenridge 100
Photo ©: Liam Doran
Notably absent from the race are NUE series leader Jeff Schalk as well
as third and fourth places in the standings, Chris Eatough and Harlan
Price. Some East Coast racers may be choosing to attend the closer US
National Championships in Mount Snow, Vermont, this weekend.
In the women's race, local Cat Morrison is the favorite. She won the
Montezuma's Revenge the last time it was held, in 2006. The top three
in the women's standings, Cheryl Sornson, Laureen Coffelt, Cricket Butler
were not registered at the time of writing.
The Breckenridge 100 is also part of both a regional ultra series, and
it will raise money for the TAME Foundation's hippotherapy program. Promoters
are hosting a 32 mile race, new for this year, and a 68 mile race in addition
to the 100 miler.
"This race course harkens back to the old school of mountain biking,
where riders explored high alpine terrain, backcountry trails and dirt
roads," said Thane Wright, Event Director. "Our goal is to provide
a unique and rewarding experience in cross country competition. Racers
will be both pampered and pushed to their limit."
Team Bulls ready to defend TransAlp title
The TransAlp race
Photo ©: TransAlp
The 11th Jeantex Bike Transalp will kick off on Saturday, July 19 in
Fuessen, Kemptenerstraße corner of Gluecksstraße in Germany.
In eight days, 550 teams of two including pros as well as amateurs will
pedal 665.40 kilometres and face 21,691 metres in elevation gain across
the Alps. On their way to the traditional finish in Riva del Garda on
July 26, the participants will stop also in Austria and Switzerland.
Last year's winners are among the starters. At the 10th anniversary
race in 2007, Germany's Karl Platt and Stefan Sahm took home an impressive
victory. This year their mission will be to keep the title. "When
I show up at the Transalp there is only one goal for me! I want to win
the race," said Platt, who will be contesting his eighth edition
of the race.
The start list features a colourful mix from 46 nations and includes
some well known top guns who may be able to play a major role. Besides
Austria's Martin Kraler and Heinz Verbnjak from Craft & Friends, the
Fiat-Rotwild pairing with Austrian Silvio Wieltschnig and German Thomas
Nicke and Vaude-Simplon 1's Andreas Strobel and Markus Kaufmann of Germany
may be able to jump onto the podium. In addition, last year's third place
Alexander Pscheidl and Christian Schneidawind from the German Team Texpa-Simplon
and their fellow countrymen Carsten Bresser and Daniel Gathof from Rocky
Mountain are on the list.
But for the most of the 1,100 starters who range from 16 to 70 years-old,
there is one major goal: to finish at Lake Garda. On their way from Fuessen
to Riva del Garda, the Transalp circus will stop in Imst and Ischgl in
Austria, Scuol in Switzerland and Italian stage towns Livigno, Kaltern,
Naturns and Andalo. The route will cross 20 saddles including the highest,
the Bocchetta di Forcola (2,769 m) with its climb of 700m.
Racers from countries like Australia, Brazil, Columbia, Libya, Costa
Rica, Japan, Russia, South Africa, Singapore and the USA will take off
at 10:00 am Saturday to the sound of AC/DC's "Highway to Hell".
Vogel a favorite for Swiss nationals
Florian Vogel (Switzerland)
Photo ©: Rob Jones
With Christoph Sauser off preparing for the Olympics and Ralph Näf
taking a break from racing, Florian Vogel (Swisspower) is the men's favorite
for the Swiss National Championship in Seon this weekend July 19-20. Athleticum
team racers Lukas Flückiger and Martin Gujan will provide a tough
challenge for Vogel.
In the U23 category, the favorite is World Champion and Swiss Olympic
team member Nino Schurter (Swiss Power). His biggest challenger is likely
Matthias Flückiger (Athleticum).
Petra Henzi and Nathalie Schneitter are the top picks in the women's
and U23 race. Look out for Matthias Rupp and Vivienne Meyer in the junior
The grassy, flat start / finish will be in the courtyard Egliswil. After
500m the course goes into wooded hills with ups and downs. Much of the
route is in the woods with technically demanding sections like drops and
Absalon to defend French national title
Orbea's Julien Absalon is prepared to defend his French national championship
title on Saturday in the town of Cher Chevalier. Absalon has previously
won the title seven times.
He is extra motivated this time around because if he wins the title,
he will finally be able to race in the national championship jersey. "I
haven't been able to wear it because I was U23 and elite world champion."
He was the elite champion for the past four years, from 2004 to 2007,
until last month when Christoph Sauser took the 2008 title in Val di Sole,
Team-mate Jean Christophe Peraud is coming off a win in the national
road championship a few weeks ago. He's never won a national mountain
bike title and will be battling Absalon for the honor. Cedric Ravanel
is another favorite for the win.
Slovenia, Italy, Germany, Switzerland, the United States and Canada are
just some of the other countries holding National Championships this weekend.
World Champion Fullana readying for Olympics
Margarita Fulla (Massi) on the
Photo ©: Some Bloke
World Champion Marga Fullana (Massi) started the final stage of her preparation
for the Olympic Games with a Spanish Open race in the town of Elche last
weekend. Heat was a factor in the competition - something likely to also
play a role in Bejing.
Fullana won her event with enough of a margin that she could take the
slippery descents at a less risky pace, and she finished in just over
one and a quarter hours - a relatively short race for her, but a good,
intense effort nonetheless.
Next up for her is the BTT Pratxedis 2008 and then preparation at home
before departing for Beijing, China, on August 11. She'll spend some time
there before the Olympic race getting used to local conditions. In between
photo sessions and TV interviews, Fullana will continue to focus her energy
on the upcoming Olympic Games. High intensity training will be a focus.
Sue Haywood (Trek / VW) at the
Photo ©: Sven Martin
This weekend will mark the retirement from active Olympic distance cross
country and World Cup racing by Sue Haywood (Trek/VW). A former national
US champion, she has competed at a high level domestically and at World
Cup races for many years.
"I'm still gonna race the rest of the year, but it seemed like a
good place with everyone there to have a little closing," said Haywood
of her plans for the weekend's racing at Mount Snow, Vermont.
She will continue racing for the rest of the season, mostly attending
longer events. "I'm going to do a few 100 milers and I may do the
NMBS Finals [in Utah] and the stage race in Brianhead the weekend before."
When asked what's next, she said, "I don't know. I don't have any
plans yet." Looking back she reflected thoughtfully, "I didn't
expect to be doing this [professional racing] for ten years after all."
Haywood won the US National Short Track Championship in 2001, 2003 and
2006. Earlier this spring she finished second at the Cape Epic with Trek/VW
team-mate Jenny Smith. She's also been a member of the winning team at
Moab in 2001 and 2002, won the 2006 24 Hours of Adrenaline World Championship
in Conyers, Georgia, and won the 2007 La Ruta.
Seventh TransRockies less than a month away
Two racers among beautiful scenery
Photo ©: TransRockies
The seventh edition of the TransRockies, which takes place in Canada's
Rocky Mountains, is less than one month away. Starting August 10 in Panorama
Mountain Village, British Columbia, 500 riders from more than 30 countries
will tackle a longer, revised course. The race runs through Saturday,
August 16 and ends in Fernie.
In 2007, forest fires caused the course to be changed to include an extra
night at Nipika Mountain resort while the planned overnight stop in Alberta
had to be cancelled. This year's route includes both the extra night in
Nipika, which was popular with riders, along with a return to the Crowsnest
Pass region of Southwestern Alberta.
The heavy snow season in 2007-2008 has been a mixed blessing for TransRockies
organizers. On the one hand, it means that final route mapping and measurement
is just underway but it also means that this should be a relatively safe
year for dry forest conditions and that route integrity will be maintained
from planning to event.
The peloton rolls
Photo ©: TransRockies
What is certain is that the final route will include more singletrack
thanks to new routing on days one, two, three and six along with a longer
day seven route. Final numbers will be released before the event.
Registration for the 2009 event will open the day after this year's event
finishes. Past participants will be given priority: 2008 participants
can begin 2009 sign-up starting at the closing banquet while other past
race participants can sign up online starting on Sunday, August 17. General
registration will open on Monday, August 18.
event was won by Canadians Tim Heemskerk and Roddi Lega of United
Cycle Team and Americans Hillary Harrison and Susan Haywood of Trek VW
For more information, visit www.transrockies.com.
15th Iron Bike coming up this weekend
The 15th edition of the Iron Bike will start this weekend on July 19
and run through July 26 over 650km and eight days and 22,000m of climbing.
The race will be without Sandra Klomp, who won Iron Bike from 2004 to
Giovanni Maiello, who has won the 21st edition of Marathon and Mediofondo
Fausto Coppi, will be at the starting line along with 150 racers from
18 different countries and five continents. Team InfoTre Lee Cougan will
also be represented by Filippo Barazzuol.
July 19: Entracque (Prologue)
July 20: Entracque - San Damiano Macra
July 21: San Damiano Macra - Jausiers (France)
July 22: Jausiers - Barge
July 23: Barge - Torre Pellice
July 24: Torre Pellice - Pragelato
July 25: Pragelato - Cesana
July 26: Cesana - Sauze d'Oulx
For more information visit www.ironbike.it.
Goss re-signs with Race Face
Pro shredder Wayne Goss to its factory team resigned with Race Face Components,
Inc. for another two years.
"We're ecstatic to have Wayne on board for another two years,"
said Race Faces Julian Coffey. "We've had a long and successful
association with Wayne and it's been very satisfying to see him develop
into one of the sport's premiere athletes. All of us are looking forward
to what the future holds for him."
Race Face originally signed Goss in August 2004, after his convincing
UFC win. Shortly thereafter, he penned long term deals with Cannondale
and the Cut team. Goss has appeared in Freeride Entertainment's New World
Disorder series and finished ninth at Qashqai Madrid last year.
El reto del Quetzal gets new route
Photo ©: El Reto del Quetzal
Organizers announced a new route for the El Reto del Quetzal set for
October 3-5. The three-day event will run from Antigua Guatemala to Retalhuleu
on the Pacific Coast, traversing some beautiful areas of Guatemala. As
of early July, the race was 60% sold out with riders signed up from Ecuador,
El Salvador, Costa Rica, Mexico, Colombia, Venezuela and the USA.
Last year's event
was won by Costa Rica's Deiber Esquivel and Yonathan Carballo (Endurance-IBP)
while Americans Susan Haywood and Lea Davison (Trek-VW) were the fastest
For more information, visit www.elretodelquetzal.com
Summer of Shred partners with Wheels4Life
Wheels4Life, the charity started by mountain biking legend Hans Rey,
has joined forces with Phil Sundbaum and the Summer Of Shred. Rey will
be joining Sundbaum for a Summer of Shred tour stop in Tanzania at the
end of August. The two riders will ride together through the Pare
Mountains and safari through some of Africa's most epic terrain.
In preparation for the trip, Summer Of Shred has developed a program
to support Wheels4Life, which will be called "Flips4Life". Companies
and individuals can support the project by pledging money for each backflip
that Phil Sundbaum does during the months of July and August. A counter
of Sundbaum's backflips will be posted on the Summer Of Shred website
(www.summerofshred.com) and will be updated daily with his progress through
The money that is raised through "Flips4Life" will be donated
directly to Wheels4Life, which delivers bicycles to Africa. The pair will
then hand-deliver the bicycles to villagers during their Summer Of Shred
tour through Tanzania.
To support the project, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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