The winners of this year’s cross-country mountain bike race series were a contrast in styles.
On the men’s side you had Salmon Arm’s Lee English, who won four out of six races to earn the victory based on his race performance.
On the women’s side the winner was Liz Kozak, who won based on her consistent participation in races and in trail maintenance days, despite being more than 55-years-old.
While the races are competitive, the overall points are designed to not only encourage placing well, but also taking part in Revelstoke Cycling Association trail days. Racers received bonus points for being young (U19) or old (40+) and for participation in trail days. There were also bonus points for taking part in every race and for winning the most races.
The final race took place on Wednesday, Aug 14, at Revelstoke Mountain Resort, using the old RCA trails at the mountain. The course saw racers bike up the mountain road to the maintenance shed, ride the Faultline loop counterclockwise, pedal past the day lodge, conquer the grueling climb up the Sunshine Trail to the Big Easy bike trail, ride that trail clockwise, and then complete a second lap of Faultline before descending down the mountain to the finish line outside the Rockford restaurant.
Lee English was the first one up the climb, with Brendan MacIntosh in hot pursuit. Those two would stay in the lead throughout the race, with MacIntosh unable to pull ahead of English. MacIntosh was just behind English the whole way, and English took the win by just a few seconds.
Nash Masson finished third, followed by Bart Jarmula and Rich Hamilton.
Only three women entered the race, and two were hampered by flat tires. Carol Prince finished first, while Emily Unterberger had to walk her bike down the mountain after her flat. Kozak finished third.
In the overall standings, English won with 95 points. Kellen Viznaugh and Hamilton tied for second with 77 points.
Liz Kozak, who won the overall women’s title, finishes her lap of Faultline. Photo by Alex Cooper/Revelstoke Times Review
On the women’s side, Kozak led with 90 points. Teenager Unterberger finished second with 87 points and Prince, who won four out of six races, was third with 81 points.
While the cross-country race season is finished, the road race series has been extended with the addition of two races. The first is a road race on Tuesday, Aug. 20, along a loop that goes from RMR to Westerberg Road, along Airport Way, up Nichol Road and along Camozzi Road back to RMR.
The final race will be a time trial that will start on Mt. Begbie Road and see the racers make two steep climbs up Clough Road.
The downhill race series resumes on Sunday, Sept. 15, with a race down the new Iron Lotus trail. On Sept. 29, there will be a race down Rednecks Revenge and the series wraps up on Oct. 20 with the Frigid Fingers race down the Ultimate Frisby trail.
The Mt. Revelstoke Steamer has been cancelled this year due to logistical issues, said organizer Brendan MacIntosh. It will be back in 2014, possibly as part of Bike Fest, he added.
The Martha Creek Meltdown down Sale Mountain returns on Saturday, Sept. 14. For more information, visit www.marthacreekmeltdown.com.