So, after a 3 year hiatus Canada has opened its doors for me. I am back, back in BC, back in Whistler riding my bike all summer. I have missed this place but I have also missed riding my DH bike in the last few years. The last couple of weeks have been a steep learning curve trying to get back upto speed smashing laps out behind Craig(‘s list) Evans, but with the ever-present Coast Mountain’s early season dampness hanging in the air I haven’t felt too out of place.
So last week was the first ‘Phat Wednesday’ beer league race; a rare type of race that has helped inspire This is Sheff and the local Sheffield Wednesday night races since our initial winter duel races. The Phat Wednesday series is the most competitive ‘mates race’ in the world, where else do you get Chris Kovarik turning up to each round? OK, OK, I am aware that we get Peaty at our mates races regularly, and even a showing last year from a certain Flyin’ Brian Lopezzzzz, but…..well actually, but nothing. Peaty>Kovarik so therefore Sheffield>Whistler.
With this minor riding mecca misconception sorted out I would like to draw attention back to just how cool this concept of racing is. Anyone can do it, grab your mates, grab some timing gear and get racing. Just make sure you are doing it out the way of elderly dog walkers.
The Phat Wednesday series races every week starting off, as per tradition, with a B-line race. Everyone that would like to appear cool puts 5bucks into a pot, takes their chain off and tucks and pumps down the 6ish min track. The chainless winner takes all the spoils and the boys are separated from the men: this week I tucked my balls back up into my body and was firmly sat in the little boy’s category. Without the backup of a chain there is no recovering from blowing out a turn on B-line’s mellow pastures. A fact I found out when a SMALL drift nearly stopped me dead up high on the trail. The rest of the run went well, and I even caught the chained rider that was infront up, but the damage was done. 50something in Chainless cat is pretty lame. Evans was on a stormer, beating me by a couple of seconds even with a crash. Saturday lad beat us both. The bastard.
The win was Kovarik’s for the taking with Billinghurst and Nick Geddes rounding out the podium, all chainless. The Womens podium was the same in regards to the lack of chains on the bikes, Clair Buchard, Sarah Leishman and Maria Darquier all took home some cash.
Results are here.
So, a week has passed since that first race on B-line. This week we raced a very tiring combo of Fantastic to Lower Crank it up. Fantastic is Fant…err awesome, but Crank it up was a bit of a bastard, pretty much a sprint littered with Gas to Flats and a sketchy slippy bridge thrown in for good measure. Never the less the crowds turned up to sprint their asses off for their chance at Local glory, even though for the vast majority of us there is no glory involved, just pain and a slightly vommy feeling welling up inside us as we cross the line. Craig was back on form cracking a 14th out but the winner still had 9seconds on him. I bettered my abysmal result of last week and came 55nd. Still pissed off with that.
Billinghurst, Geddes and Paulo were on the steps, Gunner is fast for a Master and was stood tallest on the podium as was Strand for the ladies. Sarah second again and Maria Darquier 3rd. Also props to Raff Dice who got 13th, her first top 20, even though she spent the hour before the race pissing me off moaning about not wanting to ride.
Results are here.