King of the Mountain

When all you can say is, "WOW"

Sometimes there's just nothing you can say, other than, "wow!!!" Or, some similar utterance of disbelief and amazement.  Sometimes, you have to say it again, and again, and again, until you are convinced of what you have just seen or heard.

Such was the case when I learned that Jeremiah Bishop had won the US National Marathon championships last weekend in Breckenridge Colorado.  I was in the race myself, I had heard bits and snippets about his mechanical problems (broken chain, broken spokes, broken rear der).  I had even SEEN him from behind, as he was getting going again and storming back toward the front of the race.  But I sitll couldn't believe when I crossed the line and everyone told me he had won.  You HAVE to read the story for yourself here:

Another case of WOW is upon me now, here in Downieville, CA.  This place is like no other that I have seen.  It's miles from anywhere, deep in a Sierra river valley, with no cell reception, minimal internet, one pay phone, and every store and business closes at 6pm.  We almost didn't get dinner our first night here becuase everything was closed!

The other WOW to this event is that the start list reads like a whos- who of the gravity and XC worlds combined.  Eric Carter, Brian Lopes, Myles Rockwell, Greg Herbold, Jurgen Beneke, Mark Wier, Jason Moeshler, Andreas Hestler, Chris Sheppard, and more.  Into this mix, we are entering Susan Haywood and Ross Shnell, aboard a Fuel EX carbon and a Remedy 9, respectively.  I will try and go into more detail later, but to be short, the course is about 60 minutes of downhill, with 900ft of climbing for good measure.  Lots of pedaling, and a few sections to make you test your appetite for pure, no-brakes, let it rip, SPEED.  Like nothing I've ever seen before.

Tomorrow is an XC that takes in a long climb prior to the DH ... Sunday is the DH itself.  We've done a week of testing and pre riding ... more news to come!!


Randy van Vliet

Imagine the suprise when Ross Schnell pulls the rabbit out of the hat and wins the XC portion on Saturday! 3000 vertical feet of climbing about 2500 of it in 4.5 miles, 2 miles of slight downhill and flat fire road, then 500 feet climb in the last .5 mile to test your mettle, abilities to squeeze the most out of your aching legs while avoiding cramping up, then 17 miles of mixed downhill, climbs, river crossings, baby doll head rock roads that eat tires, tubes rims and riders slacking from exhaustion, with a 5000 foot vertical drop!

Schnell, scnell, Auch Schnell! Go Trek /VW! Go Ross!

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