Sunday, August 31, 2008

Day two and more medal!

Day two of SolVista G3 was featured on Silky Johnson... chainless! The trail has a total of some 75 berms. The chainless format turned todays racing into a skills competition. Who can slam through turns the fastest and keep the speed high. Don't touch the brakes!!! Rachel Bauer flew threw with the winning time to take the top spot and control the overall lead for the weekend. Curt finished strong is second with a 15 second deficiete under first. Side note, Curt took a nasty indo in the trees and bile drove his face into a berm. He is doing alright, little sore and now has a cracked grill. He is smiling big and looking forward to tomorrows race.

SORRY for no photos! Check back or on my blog for more stuff.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Day one of Sol Vista G3 and Banhsee earns THREE podiums!

Team Dead Bros Banshee is fully representing at Sol Vista for the Mountain States Cup season finaly. With three days of racing, the team is standing tall with two podiums. "But i thought you said three?!?" Well that is because the Columbian speeder
Marcelo Gutierrez made a sudden appearance in Colorado.

Randomly running into him on the course, it was great to meet more of the Banshee pride crew. With no more then four runs of practice, Marcelo came in and took fourth. "I did alright," Marcelo says, "Hoping for better tomorrow. Rachel fresh on her hot chrome and black Scythe had a total of five runs on the bike before CRUSHING the competition and took the first place. Curt came away second after a rerun due to a massive crash ahead of him on his first run.

With two more full days of racing we will be sure to see more Banshee bikes flying through the trees of Sol Vista Colorado More photos and reports to come!

Ryan's Viento review

Banshee Viento (M)

Industry Nine AM Wheels
Truvativ Stylo 3.3 Cranks
Fox Float RLC (09)
Syncros Gain Riser Bar
Syncros AM Stem
Fizik Zeak Saddle
Sram XO/X9 Derallieur/Shifters
Avid Juicy Seven Disc Brakes

So I have put some miles on my Viento and am very happy to say that it is awesome. I rode for about a week all over the east coast. Starting with some local trails in Connecticut and New Jersey to some epic climbs and decents in the Apalachian Mountains in Western Virginia. The bike stands up true to all that is advertised. First thing...stiffness. You guys say the Viento is stiff and I believed you. But, when I hit a long downhill stretch and dropped into the big ring and really put all my weight into it I was shocked. Every ounce of my near 200lb self went straight from the pedals to the ground. Not a single bit of noticeable flex in the frame. To say the least I am very impressed. The rear triangle absorbs shock just as good as you guys said it would. This bike may be the the Banshee that is built for speed but it is still strong as hell. It climbs like a dream and decends like one too. Extremely stiff on the clims yet suprisingly gentle when it decends. Being this my second Banshee frame with several other choices in between, I have to say that I will prob never get another frame from anyone else. It is awesome and I cannot wait to build my next one. Thanks alot for all your guys help and Thanks even more for building bikes you can really ride.

Ryan Charaba

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Rune off for Review

Hey All,

As you avid blog readers would be aware, earlier this year we “lost” a Banshee Rune in transit to Australian Mountain Bike magazine; in other words the freight company lost it, but we suspect it was stolen. Long story short, we got stooged by the freight company and had nothing left to show for our efforts, it didn’t even make it to the magazine, so we didn’t even get the review. It sucked!

But at the end of the day, it might have been a blessing in disguise as I ended up building the Rune of dreams. I set out with the intention of making the perfect build for this bike, with money as no object...the aim was to build the ultimate ride at all costs. Rough calculations work this baby out to be in the $10,000+ AUD range too! Holy smokes!

But it looks like every penny of it and rides like $1,000,000 dollars. I could harp on about how well it pedals, ascends, descends, corners, monos, etc. But in a nutshell, this bike is “Fun!”. No matter what you are doing on it, you just have an absolute’s perfect!

We sent it off to AMB and low and behold it did arrive this time (thank god!) and they seem to be very impressed with it. The review won’t be on shelves until November but it sounds very positive and they liked the bike so much it will be getting a double page spread feature review. Stoked! So keep tuned for that.

For any Aussies or travellers coming to the Mt Stromlo World Cup this weekend, keep an eye out for me hooning around on it and come and say hi...and buy me beer!

"Final" Spec:

  • Frame: Banshee Rune (Large, Team Polish / Black)
  • Shock: Fox DHX Air 5.0
  • Forks: Fox 36 Talas RC2 (custom painted gloss black to match the frame)
  • Headset: FSA Orbit Xtreme Pro (1.5 reducing to 1-1/8)
  • Cranks: Raceface Atlas AM (running on Shimano Deore XT BB) w/ Gamut P30 Bashring and Red Chainring Bolts
  • Pedals: Time Atac Carbon XS
  • Rear Mech: SRAM X0
  • Front Mech: Shimano Deore XT
  • Shifters: SRAM X0 Trigger
  • Brakes: Avid Juicy Ultimate w/ Straitline Levers, 180mm Front, 160mm Rear
  • Wheels: Industry Nine DH (823 Rim, Custom Red to Black Fade, DT 10mm RWS Rear Skewer, 20mm Front)
  • Tyres: Kenda Nevegal w/ Prototype "Spex" Tubeless Sealant (
  • Bar: Easton Monkey Lite Carbon XC
  • Stem: Thomson Elite X4 (70mm)
  • Seat: Fizik Gobi
  • Seat-collar: Salsa Q/R
  • Weight: 14.4 Kg (31.7lbs)


Ken (XXIV Imports)

Click for more pics...

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Guillames New Scythe

Banshee scythe review

Well after a long wait i finally receive my frame (with the new
rockers) the day before i left for Whistler.
The build kit was ready for quite a long time.

Shock : Fox DHX 5
Spring : Titanium
Crankset :Race face diabolus
Chain guide black spire
Wheels : spinergy
Fork : 66 RC2X 2007
Brakes : Formula Oro K18
Stem : Thomson
Handelbar : sunline V2
seat : Fizik Nisene
seat tube thomson
derraileur : X0
Pedals : Wellgo MG1
Tyre : High roller 2.5

Once I arrivied in whistler i was super excited to give a shot to that new baby.
Before I tried i thought the head angle was bit too steep but after few runs on B line and other karate monkey (blue run) I felt super confortable. Then I send myself in CRank it up with all the easy jump.
The bike jump so well i feel safe and it’s supra manoeuvrable in the air. The pretty low BB allows to corner like hell and when the bike start to drift it’s easy to keep the drift clean and good.

Well I had so much fun riding whistler with that bike (keith can
I can’t wait to rip my local trail

The scythe is the perfect bike for freeride simple, safe and very efficent

Then a big thank you to Jay, keith and all the banshee pride

thank you again for the frame

I love it

Monday, August 25, 2008

Straitline Stem

As those of you who read this blog regularly probably know, we have a very good relationship with the guys over at Straitline. And during my time out in Whistler during Crankworx, Greg kindly donated a prototype stem to my cause to test on my prototype legend.

I'll let the photos do the talking, but you really have to see this beauty in real life to appreciate it properly.

As expected, this stem is working perfectly, is light weight (166.8g including high tensile steel bolts that screw beautifully into the roll formed threads... mmmmm), and super bling... and the go faster holes must help... surely! haha

Great work Straitline, another exceptional product!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Banshee Scythe - Built for burl and hurl // PB Review

Banshee Scythe - Built for burl and hurl

10 Photos
August 22, 2008 - Submitted by brule

Source: Ryan Kuhn

Midway through the 2008 season, the DH race beast sunk its fangs deep into my blood. I suddenly had a burning desire to get on the track as much and as soon as possible. However, the limiting factor was I had dumped all my cash early in the season on a new “all mountain” ride more apt to the single track of my hometown of Rossland, B.C.

Read More... | 40 Comments

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Rain and more as usual in England

well we've had one of the wettest months on record here in England this August...and frankly it sucks, the pubs are doing a roaring trade as everyone drowns their sorrows in booze ;)

its pretty much rained every day, but as its still warm, once the rain stops, it dries out pretty damn quick, and you gotta make the most of the dry patches to get out and ride, whatever kind of riding you are into

I've been working like a madman recently, and also waiting for my fork to come back from warranty so its been lots and lots of BMX every evening, here's a shot from my local skatepark which is a 2 minute ride from my house in London

Rob - Footplant tap on the big flatbank at Cantelowes

Toby Fenner (Esher trail crew) has been getting to grips with his Mythic Scythe after a holiday to France to ride the big mountains of Morzine

I have been "encouraging" him to ride his Scythe on the dirt jumps, and he seems to be getting into jumping on a sprung bike rather than his usual 24" DJ hardtail

Toby whipping his Scythe through the 5th

The shop has been busy, with this custom build recently rolling out of our workshop, ready for a demo ride by one of Keith's lady friends...

Rune custom build

Since being built on Thursday, there have been several car-park test rides by interested customers, and people asking about Rune builds on finance schemes, so it shows that pulling a frame off the ceiling and building it up can create results

Rune custom build - front on angle

The Rune does look really pretty with the white bits matching the white graphics...hmmmm


Rob C

Friday, August 22, 2008

Marcelo the Magnificent

Marcelo, had never been to Canada before, but I think after spending about a week riding with Rob Fraser at Bromont, then another week in Whistler (where he never stopped smiling), I am confident to say that he will be back ASAP!

So this write up is about the 18year old Colombian's first time to Whistler and Crankworx.

Marcelo Gutierrez phoned me up a couple of days before Crankworx started to say that he had just rolled into town and wanted me to show him around a bit. This was great as I had been waiting to meet this young ripper for some time now, half because he seemed like a cool guy, and half because I wanted to inspect his early prototype legend which he rode for the week...

So we met up, and I introduced him to a few of my friends around town, (I want to make a special shout out to all the guys at Summit Bike Shop for all their help and good vibes, they kept Marcelo rolling for the week. They are great people!). Marcelo decided that he might as well try racing all three of the DH race events: Garbonzo DH, Air DH (A-line race), and the Canadian Open. So he registered, got his Number, Grabbed a pass, and was good to go.

I spent the first couple of Days riding with Marcelo. I say riding with... that might be bending the truth a little. I have ridden these trails most summers for last 6 years or so... but Marcelo was faster than me when he was riding them blind. So after first couple of laps, I just pointed at the entrance of the trail and let him lead the way, while I tried to follow his back wheel through all the crazy lines he takes.

I have ridden with some fast guys who race successfully at national levels, but riding with Marcelo really showed me that there is a massive step in speed, ability, and mind set between the best and the rest. All I can say, is that Marcelo really should try using his brakes sometimes, personally I find them quite useful!

After a couple of days Marcelo went up the hill with Alan Hepburn, our Aussie ripper. Alan came back with a massive smile, and lots of scratches and bruises, saying he had never ridden as fast in his life (even tho he is a fast rider!), and loved it.

OK enough of the blurb... race report time in chronological order:

Garbonzo DH:

After less than 2 days of practice runs on the massively long and technical course, Marcelo already felt fairly comfortable. He said he was aiming for a time of around 15:30 for his race run... and that was when the course was dry.

Race day came, and so did the rain. The earlier race categories probably got the worst of it, and it was starting to clear up by the time Marcelo came down in a time of 15:27.7. By the time the pros came down, it seemed to have dried up almost completely.

That time put Marcelo in the hot seat, where he had to wait nervously for the rest of the riders in his category to come down to see how that time would hold up. Turns out that he won the 16-18 category by a clear 32seconds!!

Speaking to Marcelo after the race, he was happy with how he rode, said it went well, and the scariest thing was having to do the interview at the bottom while waiting in the hot seat, as he was scared that his English was not good enough. Actually he spoke very well.

1 Race, 1 Gold.

Air DH:

This was the race that Marcelo was most nervous about, as a lot of the riders were using shorter travel bikes, and were locals who knew A-line inside out, but Marcelo went up there after his morning of scoping the trail, and put in a really solid time of 4:37.1 on his legend. Again the hot seat and nail biting wait followed. This race was close as expected, but Marcelo won by a margin of only 0.7seconds over the local ripper Tyler Allison (keep an eye on this kid, as he is only 16, and shreds!)

Marcelo Said this was one of the hardest races for him, as he just had to pedal the whole way, and he knew that other riders knew the course better than him. but that said..

2 races 2 Golds

Canadian Open:
There was now some pressure on Marcelo, as the competition were targeting him as the biggest threat, and also there was that chance of getting the clean sweep hat trick of golds which he wanted.

He knew that the course suited his riding style as it was fairly tech, but also fast (see helmet cam in post a few below to see Marcelo riding the course the day before the race). So he was quietly confident to do well, and hopeful that he could get gold, but he also knew that there would be tough competition.

All I can say about this race is that Marcelo Killed it with a blistering time of 3:20.9, a time that beat all his competition by 9 seconds, and would have put him in 6th place overall in the pro category beating the likes of Brendan Faircloth, Tyler Morland, Ben Reid and Same Dale. He did it...

3 Races 3 Golds!

Next year Marcelo will be moving up to pro category, and he has a very bright future! After every race he would wait and see how his time compared to the top pros. This is what really mattered to him, as next year he knows that these are the guys he will be up against. Personally, I think he will do really well next year!

Congratulations Marcelo! Great results and a really fun week!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

XXIV / Banshee Australia Race Team

We've just put together a team to race the Australian Nationals. Dave Heatherington a former Aussie national team member leads the team this season and here is a quick video of him as he puts another win under his belt in the King of Ballrat? Ballarat? dah i can't remember what the real name is. Anyway heres the vid

Sponsors and Riders... oh the games

So I was hanging out with Greg from Straitline at Crankworx and he got a room for Jeff Lanosky and family a floor down [SL spono's Jeff]. Greg has been tanking the crap out of Jeff with his made up invisible stalker named Lee... however Jeff thinks the dude is real.
Heres an excerpt from an email forwarded to Jeff from Greg

"Hey Lee, the helmet is what it is, used just once during his demo, clean but the foam was used so sweat did touch it. I went over it for a hair but no dice.

The cell number is $125 sorry but I can get what I want for this on ebay so your call. Underwear cannot be verified but it was found near his rental in the parkade it is up to you but it was when he was packing up to go.

Talk soon!

From: Lee Murray []
Sent: Monday, aug 20, 2008 8:41 PM
To: inf0@straitlinecomponent.c0m

Well, if I can get the cell number for 70 I will consider the underwear. How do you know they are his anyways? Last time you sent me hair with the pedals I felt kinda burnt on the deal. How do I even know it was his!
Let me know, 70 is my offer.

[2:03:50 PM] Greg Parish says: I made a fake email and sent it to jeff
[2:04:04 PM] Greg Parish says: he has a stalker so i fabricated ame responding lol
[2:04:07 PM] Greg Parish says: me funny
[2:22:36 PM] Jay says: hahaha

So the next post will be on the fun and festivities at Crankworx

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Hi it's me again Polish Titanium rider. Just want to write about my last week.

My Doctor check my arm and wrist He removed 2 stabilising bars from my arm and wrist, but my bones aren't ok yet still 2 more weeks in plaster.

On saturday i was in Olsztyn city it's Polish rally drivers mekka. I was there for video shooting ( extrem sport channel is makeing show about me ) . I was driving one of K. Holowczyc (multiple times Polish and Euro rally champion) car. It was 2007 subaru impreza wrx sti made by pro drive. But because of my arm and wrist . I couldnt do much. BTW those photos are in EVO.Cars , rally driving , racing tracks it's my PASSION like freeride. Hope that i will be racing in future.

Btw my show will be on air from November 2008 till october 2009.
Thanks Szwed

Marcelos run at the Canada Cup

Here is a practice run Marcelo filmed.
Keith will have an update on all his results later this week. What I will say is he killed it this week and was super fast and his Legend was a big hit at Crankworx where the Canada cup was held.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Casey's Mt Tam

Some of you may know that Casey Botman was one of the founders of Banshee some 6 years ago. He's been working in the industry for abou 40 years and came from Holland with a license in bicycle mechanics to work for Bow Cycle in Calgary.
From there he started Ridley Cycle and went on to form his own distribution company that carried Gary Fisher.
He currently restores old bicycles and one of his current projects is this Gary Fisher Mt Tam. After talking to Gary he was still unable to get the original tires or a seat.

On another note, I have finished the 1983 Fisher Mt.Tam (90%) and it turned out great !! Your buddy Fran did a hell of a job on the decals. The only thing I still need is the rubber and a saddle. It would be GREAT if I could find a (new old stock) Deore XT crank set, the one on it is heavily used and has a lot of scratches etc. If I could find something better it would turn this bike like new. This was the first year of the Shimano Deore XT group.
The tires are the big thing, I have one original (FATRAX) and would love to find a new pair or a set that looks close to the tread (see attached picture).

Also heres a cool vid of the festivities at Bow Cycle last year when they celebrated their 50th. I know everyone had a great time and I was sure glad I got the invite.
Thanks to Pedal for putting this together.

Where did we go??!!!

So sorry everyone... its been a little over a week and nothing new has been posted up. We'll its not because we haven't been busy. In fact we've been overly busy as Crankworx just went off and I'll have a ton of stuff to report on that. As well I've been lazy and haven't even posted up stuff of Alan "Heppy" Hepburn from the Redbull competition he was in.

So bare with us as there is lots to come this week.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Matt Brooks Rebel TV interview

Colorado Racing Update

Weekend off? Naw, go go go GO GO!!! Snowmass Colorado went off this weekend with the first of two G3 races. What's G3 you ask? Well just put your little mouse clicker right.... HERE! to find out. For those lazy folk here is a quick layout. G# is a gravity only race (MSC races usually have endurance as well), two downhill races and super d. Banshee rider Curt Clementson rode hard all weekend one his new Scythe. However due to rr shox malfuction, Curt ended up racing the super d and 2nd dh on his Rune. Not only did Curt come home with a podium from each gravity race (2nd dh #1, 3rd super d and 1st dh #2), he also was number one overall in his class, Expert 40+ (Yup he has got some years but can kill it on a bike). Curt ripped it all weekend long and was extremely happy to do so well. Special thanks goes out to Jay for helping out Team Dead Bros. Thanks buddy! Pride 22

Curt slaying the muddy course Sunday. I forgot to mention the fact that the Colorado skies unleashed an unusual amount of rain all weekend long. it is isn't dust in snowmass it is mud!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Race bike ready to rip!

Santa Claus came this past weekend and delivered two extremely sick, sexy scythe frames for Curt and Rachel. Linden, Curt and myself all teamed to build Curt's bike in time. Two hours later... it was complete! Send good luck for the Banshee CO crew in weekend as the first of three G3 races blast off in Snowmass.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Jay's Busy Week

I guess you could call it a sales trip but it was sure alot of fun - are sales trips supposed to be fun??!!
Anyway... it was a pretty busy week of meeting some of our dealers, riding and a little drinking thrown in for good measure.
I don't have very many pics mostly because when you're cramped for time you just want to ride your bike and not stop and take a bunch of pictures.
Wednesday saw me and Dalen [dude in the orange shirt] off to Calgary to see Scott [dude beside him in the Bow Cycle jersey].
It was a long drive from Vancouver but with the mountains its always a treat to go through the passes. We arrived at around 10pm with a quiver of bikes - 2 Wildcards, Pyre, Legend, Amp, and a Scythe.

Next morning we were off to Bow Cycle to talk to them and then up to Edmonton to see the guys at Revolution. I had never been to Edmonton so it was cool to see and later that evening we got a chance to ride Rabbit Hill which was a lot of fun. We showed up late and only got in less then 10 runs before the night forced us off the hill.

Next day we headed back down through Calgary to Vernon and Silverstar mountain. That was a complete blast and if you haven't been there and you only ever ride Whistler its a must go ride mountain. The woodwork through the trails with the wall rides and other built up sections is something I wish Whistler would do a little more of. They have it on Crank-it-up but it would be cool to see something a little more Silverstar-esq.
Met up with Scott, Mike, Brad, Jay the night before for some laughs over beers at Denny's hahaha. Mikes a complete hoot,[guy farthest left] former military man for the British army with a ton of stories from back home and everytime he'd open his mouth we'd be rolling around on the floor 10seconds later laughing our asses off.
We got a good day of riding in pretty much hit everything on the mountain and the pace was really good. Only think was their was this kicker that if you didn't know it and went in to hot you were sure going to miss the transition and land flat... unfortunately Brad [ballcap in the back] couldn't hold it after landing flat and rolled onto his shoulder breaking his collarbone although you wouldn't know it as he didn't even look like he was in any pain at all and was still trying to figure out if he should still ride... good thing he shut it down for the day.
Jay is the other guy in the Bow Cycle jersey who we had met the day before when we got the full hour tour of Bow Cycle... its a big big big shop.

We ended the day at Silverstar for the drive to Whistler around 2pm but made sure to stop in and say hi to Terrance at Skyride at the base of the mountain. It was basically a chance to show everyone the new Legend and Amp bikes that we've been working so hard on. Also a chance to show off the 2009 Dorado which all i can say is totally freaking sick.

We met up with the gang from WTB, Tom, Gary, Dan, Brandon and I can't thank those guys enough for their hospitality when we arrived. I have to say WTB is one of those companies that really lives and breaths cycling and these guys were at Whistler for their vacations thats how much they love bikes. We only got to do runs with Tom Delacy as the other guys were pretty worked after so many days in a row riding. To my surprise Tom - who i found out later one the Downieville DH this year in expert - was killing it. The pace was super fast we barely ever stopped and it was a constant top to bottom and then back up and do it all over again.

I was riding the Legend and I basically have never experienced anything like it before. The bike just floated over stuff and even handled the techie stuff like Schleyer and Clownshoes with ease. Parts of Schleyer sometimes flatten out but the Legend accelerated so well when you stepped on the pedals that it completely blew my mind that something so plush in the DH sections would be so light when in my past experience the big bikes tend to wallow and just feel slugish.

Oh and not to forget we even got a few runs in with Alan Hepburn who is bloody fast on his Wildcard... I guess that happens when you ride everday on the mountain for the whole summer.
Goodtimes for sure

Anyway... sorry i don't have more pics. I'll try to do better next time.
I'll be up with Greg from Straitline and Dalen for Crankworx. Keith is already up there playing on his Legend and Marcelo just rolled into town as well for the races.
Its going to be a massive great time and it will be another yearly reminder why I love being in the mountain bike biz.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Big weekend filled with heavy camera bags and four podiums.

This was the weekend to be in Colorado! Not only was Crankworx Colorado going off HUGE for the second year in a row, the MSC was also hosting the Sol Survivor. Just in case you haven't heard about the MSC, check the 2008 Photo Annual of Bike Magazine and they will let you know why the MSC rocks your face off!

The second annual Crankworx Colorado set off Friday with the DH racing. Rumors in the hills said the race, and i quote, "It's going to suck. The course is lame, its in the middle of no where... don't go." Fear none, Team Dead Bros Banshee arrived in Winter Park Colorado with one goal for the weekend, make an impact. And that we did. Be it myself riding the dh course on a ss hardtail with a 30lbs camera bag, or Linden being the tall, extremely white, loud/supportive guy walking around the slope style finals as a mobile light stand. Thanks homie! Could not have gotten the shots without you.

But let us not forget Ms. Rachel Bauer whom showed up to Winter Park two hours before race time, got one "practice" run in, then sprinted back to the start to set off her race run. I barely knew what was going on when i could see Rachel's hunter orange gloves glowing in the distance. No sooner was my camera up that Rachel was gone like a blur.

What seemed like a minute went by when the racing was over and the crews were clearing the tape. Curt and myself (Curt on his Rune and myself on my ss scirocco) started down the dh course, both of us grinning from ear to ear. With the dh course clear and only the two of us riding, of course we had to stop for some photo ops. Check back here and on my site for more photos.

So long story short... blah blah blah.... Rachel earned the number three seat for Pro Women at the 2008 Crankworx CO DH!!!

Now onto Sol Vista's Sol Survivor!!! So i could go on and on and on about the Dual Slalom course, BUT, if you weren't there... you won't really know. SO! sorry. But let me do say this; the course was SICK! Rumors flying that it could be the best in the nation. Hmmmm.... maybe that is why Nationals is there next year. I will also say that the riders were straight slaying the course! You could have made a "how to video" from the racing. So i told you all that, but i didn't mention the fact that it was under the lights! The first time for the MSC, Sol Vista hosted the ds race at night under lights. I will also slide in the bit of info that Rachel AND Curt were riding for the podium on their extra butter sweet Banshee bikes. Rachel on the Rampant and Curt racing ds on his Rune, both racing to the podium!

I was unfortunately lounging in the VIP room at Crankworx, because of rain delay, when Curt raced so i don't have a first hand experience. However, in the fine words of Curt himself, "It was anti-climatic. It was fun, alot of fun. The Rune was great for this course." (I will poke at Curt to get a little more out of him for you guys...)

With the sun fully set, the pros filled the top of the hill and lined up for racing. It was amazing to see them all ride. The control and speed the had was mind blowing. the 200 yard long course (rough estimate) seemed like a fifty yard dash watching the pro riders. Rachel was no different. Her riding earned her second place!

Finally, to the main event, the dh race! Let me just say, Sol Vista can build some trails. If you are reading this and can drive, better yet pedal, to Sol Vista.... DO IT! $10 gets you a day pass for one of the best lift served bike parks in Colorado. The dh course only further confirmed why Sol Vista deserves to host the 2009 Nationals. Rock gardens, high speed berms, booters, table tops, hit to berm, and the list continues. Although a short course, pro men first was about 2min22sec, it tested your skills and endurance. The course was no easy win either. The categories were packed. I forgot to mention... Sol Survivor was also the Colorado State Championship race.

When Curt came screaming past me, I figured he was taking first. The speed and control he was holding through the berm section was awesome. Oh, I forgot something else, Curt raced the dh on his Rune. Unfortunitely racing does not always go your way, nor did it go Curt's way this weekend. A small bobble caused Curt to go course and his front wheel got stuck in a tree. The 20 seconds lost there would have been a lead over first... such is racing.

Rachel had qualified third overall for the pro women. She felt good throughout the course, but knew there were some areas to approve. "I never hit the rock gardens at full speed in practice. I'm just going to keep it smooth and make it through clean." Again a small bobble causing destruction, Rachel went OTB high on the course taking away from her normal fire. She made her way down course gaining time where ever possible. Rachel is a spin freak, which has proved to pay off in her sprinting power. Even with a crash high on the course Rachel still finished forth over all in the Pro Women.