||Huntsman World Senior Games 2014
Mountain Biking Events
St. George, Green Valley Competition Area
The Mountain Biking events of the 2014 Senior Games were held Monday
October 13 and Tuesday October 14. The staging area was in the usual spot
in the flat dirt at the bottom of the Green Valley race loop. The weather
was perfect for biking.
Race announcer and judging trailer.
||After a few years of decreased attendance, the Games saw
higher participation. There were plenty of Expert racers, so none of our
riders rode "unopposed" this year. The UtahMountainBiking team
was represented by Gene Poncelet (riding Expert 65-69), Joel Quinn (Expert
70-74) and Bruce Argyle (Expert 60-64). Nice that our guys weren't in
direct competition with each other.
Gene (L), Joel (mid), Bruce (R) after the races on Monday.
||The Hillclimb started at 9:30 Monday morning. This is a
time-trial race with each rider having an assigned a start time, with a
new rider every 30 seconds until everybody was up the hill. This year,
experts went in alphabetic order instead of by age category. As an
"A" rider, Bruce was the first racer up the hill.
Hillclimb (HC) course. [ GPX
track Hillclimb ]
||The Hillclimb course followed the traditional path across
the little wash and up the dirt road. At the spot where the downhill leg of
the race loop brushes the road, racers transferred to singletrack. The
climb passes the forks for the race loop and the Barrel Trail before
joining the loose rocky road for a stiff final grunt up to the slickrock
viewpoint overlooking Stucki Spring. The course was exactly 2.0 miles with 650
feet of elevation gain.
Gene gets low and grinds out some speed.
||At the top, racers waited for everyone to get up the
mountain, including a 90-year old racer who made it in 56 minutes. Then
the officials moved down to the junction of the singletrack for the
Downhill. (The loose rocky road is considered too dangerous to race.) This year, erosion from a severe rainstorm
eroded The Plunge -- the steep drop down to the open rock area. So the course now deviates north
on narrow twisting singletrack.
The Downhill (DH) course. [ GPX
track Downhill ]
||After 0.3 miles on this new singletrack, the DH course made
a hard 90 onto doubletrack. You might know this dirt road as part of the 10-12
loop of the Intermountain Cup race. We rejoin the main dirt road near the
ridge and plunge down toward the finish line. The Downhill was 2.1 miles
with 550 feet of elevation loss.
Joel hits the finish line after the DH.
||The Cross-country Race was held at 9:30 on Tuesday. The race
loop has a couple of changes from the traditional Rampage. On the north
side, the trail bypasses Keyhole Wash and takes new singletrack along the
next wash. And on the south side, the downhill follows the new high school
competition loop, deviating north on narrow singletrack. This singletrack
curves back and follows a ridgeline south before dropping back to the
doubletrack a mile later.
The Cross-country (XC) course. [ GPX
track XC ]
||Experts 50 to 69 started in the first group, with Expert
groups 70-and-up following. The "younger" experts did three laps
for 20 miles distance and 2800 vertical feet of climbing. 70-plus rode two
Looking down at the race site as riders begin to arrive at 8 a.m.
Tuesday at a cool 46 degrees. By end of the race, it will be
toasty with temperatures in the 80s.
||The award ceremony was at Tonaquint Park on Dixie Drive at 2
p.m. Tuesday after the XC race. We enjoyed a dinner from Chick Fil-A.
Our racers results:
Bruce Argyle (Exp 60-64) HC 2nd, DH 2nd, XC 2nd
Gene Poncelet (Exp 65-69) HC 1st, DH 1st, XC 1st
Joel Quinn (Exp 70-74) HC
1st, DH 1st, XC 1st
Lining up for chicken.