Colorado-press-2018
 
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Tai-Lee Smith, Summit and Madigan Munro, Boulder celebrate their Varsity contest.

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Kyle Packard, Legacy JV, 7220 Laramie, WY flies downhill.

Steamboat Springs Hosts a Herd of North Conference High School Racers

Colorado League Showdown in the Boat 2018 Race #2 North Report

by Mathew Muir,
Kate Rau, editor
Contact: Kate Rau, Colorado League Director, kate@coloradomtb.org, 720.272.9282

North Results
Photos

The North Conference of the Colorado League held its second of four conference races at Steamboat Springs’ iconic Howelsen Hill on Sunday, September 9th, 2018. A total of 598 racers from 32 conference schools competed across three divisions based on team size. Independent riders Laney Arreloa-Tuttle, Brighton High School and Mason Child, home-schooler from Loveland joined the fun, as they do not have a school-based team nearby. An additional 613 South Conference racers competed separately in Leadville on the same day. League Executive Director Kate Rau said, “We’re still growing! Kids are stoked to ride bikes.”

The City of Steamboat Springs generously supported the event. The city and Routt County Riders are responsible for building and maintaining all of the sweet trails. Steamboat Springs Head Coach, Blair Seymour, and team members were integral to producing a successful event.

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Jeremiah Kramer, JV, Estes Park, flowed through the moon dust.

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Maya Altland, Sophomore, Kelly Walsy - WY races to 3rd.

Sustained warm and dry late summer weather left the trails covered with the characteristic layer of moon-dust making for classic Colorado dry conditions racing, faces of riders covered in fine dust, and chirping drivetrains. Steamboat’s hometown Cam Owens won the Junior Varsity boys race. Locally based League sponsor Honey Stinger offered big discounts on their products.

Several Colorado League alumni volunteered as course marshals or sweeps. Steamboat locals came out in droves and were greeted at the Alpine Bank tent. Ethan Wright, former Fairview rider worked in timing and was thrilled to be back cheering on his younger sister Tia.

Riders were covered from head to toe with elaborate temporary tattoos for the weekend spirit contest. The competition was stiff and Green Mountain took home the prize package provided by Optic Nerve, Squirt Lube, Justin's Nut Butter and other sponsors. Rachael Molnar, Varsity racer was the tattoo artist for her Green Mountain teammates. Lakewood and the Vail Valley teams were runners' up.

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Vail Valley rider shows off their intricate temporary tattoos.

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Example of Rachael Molnar's artistry.

In the small school Division 3 category, the greater Vail Valley stayed consistent with Vail Ski and Snowboard Academy (VSSA) beating its sibling Eagle Valley Team that squeaked past third place 7220 Laramie, Wyoming, 2056 points to 2052. The team competition is exciting with Loveland placing 5th by only 5 points over Kelly Walsh, Casper, Wyoming.

Battle Mountain won the Division 2 team title, completing the Vail area’s steady occupation of podiums. Green Mountain Composite took second and Middle Park took third. Rocky Mountain trailed Middle Park by only 10 points.

Boulder High repeated as the Division 1 team winner. The formula for this victory was a combination of points from 8 girls and 7 boys from 114 total registered racers. Fairview took second and Golden third. The Golden team was fraught with many sick riders who persevered through their races for team points.

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Mathew Kempers, 081, Steamboat and Cam Zirk, Boulder, Varsity Legacy riders on steep climb.

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JV Aislinn Wehrmann, Summit and Lia Young, Green Mountain.

In Varsity Girls, Fairview’s Ada Urist cracked the code of how to win and led the 29-person field virtually the entire race. Urist will line up in the Leader’s jersey at the Granby Ranch Round-Up. Sofia Forney of Green Mountain Composite broke onto the podium’s second step and Boulder’s Madigan Munro stayed consistent with a bronze for the second time this season.

Boulder’s Bjorn Riley won the Varsity Boys race followed in second by Ryan Campbell, Golden. Campbell held onto the Leader's jersey as he won the season opener in Frisco. Jared Scott, Boulder raced to third followed by Liam Clevenger, Battle Mountain, and Campbell Watson, Monarch.

Connor Logan, Golden was second behind Owens making him the new JV boys' leader. Luke Elphingston of Fairview started the day in the Leader's jersey and was plagued by mechanicals. The field of 48 JV girls was full of exciting finishes where Gigi Jensen, Boulder outsprinted Lia Young, Green Mountain by 0.14 seconds for 4th and 5th respectively.

Slingshot

Toyota Slingshot awarded to Grant Keene, Fairview and Kate Olson, Boulder.

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Matt Tomasko was the lucky winner of the Volunteer raffle.

League title sponsor Hometown Toyota Stores not only makes the racing possible but also sponsors the Toyota Slingshot Award recognizing the most improved racers compared to their previous race. For the girls, Boulder High Freshman Kate Olson improved sixteen places in Steamboat after running the last several miles of her Frisco race due to a broken chain. Olson finished 27th out of 48 racers.

For the boys, Fairview freshman Grant Keene improved 66 places to win the Toyota Slingshot Award. Keene competes despite having ectodermal dysplasia, which prevents his body from sweating, and thus he lacks a primary heat management capacity. In Frisco, Keene had to sit down in the shade and soak himself in water in order to cool down, placing 101st. With a morning start time in Steamboat, Keene capitalized on cool temperatures to lay down two hot laps for 29th in a field of 113. His Coach, Andy Feeney adds, “He has been lucky that it has been pretty cool weather wise at practice recently so he can push himself more. He is a great kid.”

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Jack Rich, Sophomore, Centaurus, enjoys the ride.

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Lena Stolper, Sophomore, Ralston Valley focused on twisty descent.

The Sophomore and Freshman categories had many close contests. Adam Fitzcharles, Battle Mountain squeaked past Eddie Webb, Compass Montessori as they raced to 39th and 40th in the Sophomore boys' wave. Freshman girls Grace Dukesherer, Lakewood and Samira Schmidt, Fossil Ridge towed the line with a scant 0.01 seconds between them.

Optic Nerve President, Bill Cotton was impressed by the number of riders who left it all on the line. As a longtime sponsor, the level of positive sporting behavior throughout the day impresses him.

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Martha Riedel's Boulder teammates welcome her to the finish.

A horde of cheering teammates and spectators welcomed Martha Riedel, JV, Boulder as she rode strong across the finish to close the day's competition. Simultaneously a similar celebration greeted Sara Rocklin, Sophomore, Columbine in Leadville at the South Conference race.

Finn Mott of Eagle Valley was successful in churning through 2 laps for his first time. Ralston Valley’s Lena Stolper again completed her race shouldering her own supplemental oxygen in order to compensate for a lung condition. Golden’s Christopher Ziemann also made it two for two this season in the face of his autism condition. These are a few examples of the remarkable determination displayed by riders' drive to dig deep, accomplish personal goals, and support their teams.

The North Conference resumes racing with the Granby Ranch Round Up and the South Conference with the Chalk Creek Stampede in Nathrop, both on September 23rd, 2018. More information and links to complete results are always available at coloradomtb.org.

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Thanks to Steamboat Springs for hosting us!

Calendar

November 3rd
Annual Shift Primal Art Party Fundraiser, Denver, CO

2018 Race Schedule:
Race #2 - South September 9 - Colorado Mountain College, Leadville
Race #2 - North September 9 Emerald Mountain, Steamboat Springs
Race #3 - North September 23 (North) - Granby Ranch
Race #3 - South September 23 (North) - McMurry Ranch, Nathrop
Race #4 October 6 (South) - 7 (North) - Haymaker, Eagle
Race #5 October 21 - 22 State Championships, Durango

THANKS TO OUR SPONSORS!

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