Archives: crankworx

Canadian Open

What can I say? I am pretty speechless after the Canadian Open DH at Crankworx to be honest. I guess I can start with the wise words of James Crossland, ‘fuck backflips’. I think he is right too, the premier event of Crankworx was undoubtedly the classic DH race of the Canadian Open over the more-watched slopestyle.

The course is one of the best on the mountain here, and that is saying something. Riders start up on Schleyer/Joyride  splitting right onto Joyride and then cutting under the Fitz lift line. This is where the magic happens that separates the race from other events at Crankworx, and even Worldcups-Hecklers rock.


Hecklers rock is something else…..Fuck knows how many people where on the rock today, what I do know is there was a strict rule of ‘NO SHIRTS ON THE ROCK’ and that everyone was going mental. Oh man, riders on the lift were fueling the fury by dropping  horns off into the crowd and also providing someone to heckle in between riders. My fave was ‘RENTAL, RENTAL, RENTAL’ when anyone with a rental bike was cruising up overhead. I like to imagine that these people didn’t know what was going on yet it encouraged them to take up this awesome sport.

Horns were flying everywhere

Geddes

Rachel Atherton was up there on the rock, she was the but of one of the popular chants, but she didn’t wanna’ play and therefore I have not seen her tits.

Ha, GAAAAAYYYYY

Ben Reid

Reid

After Heckle rock the rest of the track was the same old Canadian Open, FAST, dusty, holey and  manly. There is a new section down low where the trail crew basically fucked a load of tree’s over and cut a swath about 12feet wide through the forest. They kindly left all the stumps in and let us all smash the hell out of it to make sure it was rutted and blown out come race day. It was truly impressive watching these boys smashing through the brown pow, and coupled with the light filtering through the tree’s it made for some banger light for the POD’s. As ever Raff Dice provided us with the nugg’s.

This section is SICK, and holey as dear Lizer's bucket

At the end of the Day it was Smith that took the win with a convincing 5second lead. 3 out of 3 for the Canadian, successful week at work eh. All said and done though, I think the winner should have been changed to Duncan Riffle…..this dude did more for his sponsors in this run than he could do with a Worldcup podium. Riffle smashed into the Hecklefest area only to stop on the top of the rock, whip his goggles of and chugged two beers before getting back to the task in hand. Legend.

Teva Best Trick.

I am not 100% on what day it is today, apart from I know slopestyle is today, and I am not sure exactly when the best trick comp was. Crankworx has been a little bit of a wild week, as ever, and now I am sat at home pounding the Growers, being deafened by horns, chugging wildcat through said horns and writing offensive signs. ‘I like 2 in the pink and one in the Zink’ is Daniella’s choice, while Chelsea has opted for ‘McCaul me, maybe?’ , my personal sign will be ‘Fuck BearClaw, I will show you the Barnsley Claw’. There will also be something for Semanuk, revolving around Semen, but I am not 100% on the wording yet.

Anyway, as ever, Raff Dice has provided the bangers as Duncan was denied at border control due to an incident that I cannot talk about due to legal reasons, so have a look at these nugg’s.

Teva have a big presence out here...

Somersault

Instagram

Somersault no hands

Stoked/Pumped/Amped#blackandwhitearty

Due to injury's the cheese rolling is the only Crankworx event the Sheffield Crew entered....

Crankworx day 1 (actually day 2)

So the biggest  bike festival of the year is upon us, Bud light, Growers, Red Rooster, Whistler Crankworx is a go!

The first event of the Festival was called ‘Fat tire Shit’ or ‘Fat twat Clit’ or something slimier.  It involved a load of Homo’s (plus Dylan Wolsky) racing mountain bikes round some tarmac and a bit of gravel. I didn’t watch it, but google brought up this image of some Hipster riding his bike on some tarmac with a ironic mustache, probably a fixie. 


Saturday saw the first proper event, a new event called Speed and Style where riders and racer battle head to head on a dual course with 2 trick jumps. You get scored for each jump, and timed over  the track with .6sec’s up for grabs on each jump. If my calculations are correct a rider that is aiming to take the win by pining it and winning on time, with no tricks,  needs to be 1.2 seconds ahead of the trickster to head on.


Fairclough won. Nuff said on that, but I think Nick should get on this for our summer series….how about 2 big wooden booters in peaty’s dual track to separate the big dogs from the pussies. Can anyone in Sheffield actually do a trick? I imagine a lot of lame one footers taking the win……….Nick, make it happen.

Today was the Garbo DH….my favorite race in the world, and one I wish I was racing, had I not broken my collar bone AGAIN. The Garbo DH takes riders from the top of the Garbonzo zone of Whistler all the to the village in 13-20ish minutes of pure, hole filled, root infested Gnarbar (as they say out here). The winning time is looking to be sub 13mins, but as of typing the winner is still at the top of the track. I bailed early on the spectating as I am taking the last Gondola up the hill to Bivi on the Peak and watch the Meteor shower.

Needless to say the fans were out in force cheering the riders on as they send the GLC drop to flat and wobble , deoxygenated (cool word, but potentially not a word) over the finish line after one of the toughest DH races about. I saw Jack Reading being interviewed up on the big screen, someone needs to give him a lesson in not winking at the camera, but hats off to him, he is confident in the win and I hope he gets it.

www.raffaellaphoto.com

Si Paton has taken a weekend off, making the trip out here to stand in for Brad ‘SHUT THE FRONT DOOR’ Ewan….I am not sure who I prefer, but here is another rad shot from Raff Dice of some Stoked (or amped) fans. HashtagCrankworxGNAR.

www.raffaellaphoto.com

Jack Reading: Whistler


I’m just on the road down to catch a flight from Vancouver driving away from my Crankworx 2011 effort. This was my fourth visit to Whistler for the competition and has been my most successful yet. My Dad made the trip out with me to provide race support and do some riding himself, although that did get cut short for him when he got a bit too aggressive with the jumps and had a nasty crash picking up a shoulder injury.

I arrived in Whistler three days before the first race, just enough time to get back into riding the mountain I know and love as well as recover from the jet lag. With a re-organised Crankworx, meaning I had two downhill races stretched over four consecutive days, I was conscious that it would be a real challenge to get my body and my bike through the entire effort.

First up was the Canadian Open Downhill which races down a traditional downhill style course that is rough, fast and technical lasting just over 3 minutes. The track is amazing and easily comparable with some of the World Cup venues. I was 13th in this one last year and was aiming for a top 10 this time. The weather wasn’t typical for a Whistler summer, which made racing more of a challenge than usual with wet slippery conditions. I only take dry tyres to Whistler because it is usually all that is needed, and then even when it rains there is so much rock that spikes would probably be more sketchy. In some places the dry tyres really were crazy wild and I had to be very conscious of these spots come my race run.

I went well with a fast, wild run to come down into 2nd place with a 3.10 and only 2 seconds off the pace. This was good enough for 8th place overall when all the riders were down and I was 2nd Brit behind Danny Hart in 5th. So I got off to a great start and was feeling confident going into the second race.

I was 7th in the Garbanzo downhill last year and have been gradually getting closer to a podium finish over the past 3 years. It’s a race from the top of the bike park which takes about 14 minutes if you’re pinned and when you finish you can barely stand. This year was going to be a wet one and again I was aiming for a top 10 finish, and hopefully an improvement on last year’s 7th. Ellsworth were back in Whistler for Crankworx so I was really pumped up to perform with the added pressure to produce in front of the team.

I had a really great run and when I came through the finish I went into the hot seat by about 10 seconds with a time of 13.58. It’s such a strange race because when you’re on the way down it’s so hard that you feel like you’re about to come last! Until the final rider came down I was in 2nd, only 1 second from the win and it would have been such a disappointment to lose out by that much if it had stayed that way. However it didn’t, and Sam Blenkinsop went fastest with a 13.46, so I was 3rd and claimed my first Crankworx podium and $1000 prize money. I can’t use words to describe the feeling, only seeing my face on the podium tells you how chuffed I was!

Over the last month I have been thinking a lot about how I have been attacking my races. By mid season I had got myself into a rhythm whereby I was riding well within my limits, going for OK results and smooth race runs. Not only is this not my style, it is also a fantastically good way to limit my progression. I had been frequently going to big races like world cups, seeing lines that I would like to do and know that I could do, but deciding not to have a go at them. These lines would be the crazy ones that I know in my head I am capable of, but gave myself the excuses not to do them which would be – ‘you’re not here to win’, and limited training time means ‘you’re not as strong as the top guys’. Then a handful of the top guys would send these lines come race runs, and in the back of my mind I would be thinking, ‘man, you know you could do that’.

I have just had an amazing Crankworx, with results right up their with the full time professionals. I had the old feeling back from when I was the wild expert in 2009 who was mixing it with the elites in the UK. I felt fast and loose and sometimes out of control, but it pays off. I am now leaving Canada after two weeks solid training and racing in the best shape I have ever been in and a confidence level which has gone through the roof. I see a line I want to hit and I hit it. In previous years I have left Whistler at the end of season in fantastic shape but with no big races left. This year thanks to an early Crankworx I will be rolling to the French world cup in a week’s time. I’m not saying that thanks to this new attitude and a great riding/racing period I will be bringing home an amazing result, because who can predict racing, anything can happen. However I am saying that I have a plan to turn up and perform at the very highest level I can, in an attempt to prolong this successful period after Crankworx has shut up shop!

I’ll keep you posted!

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