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MTB News & racing round-up for August 10, 2005, part 1

Date published:
August 10, 2005, 1:00 BST
  • U.S. Transportation Bill Promises More Trails

    Article published:
    August 10, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Steve Medcroft

    The U.S. Congress is set to approve a new five-year federal transportation Bill that will increase...

    The U.S. Congress is set to approve a new five-year federal transportation Bill that will increase trails funding, including federal grants for singletrack, according to the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA).

    After two years of delays, the new bill is finally in front of both houses of congress and will move on for President Bush's signature. In total, it will increase funding for bike programs by nearly $2 billion through 2009.

    Most important for mountain biking, the bill promises more money for the Recreational Trails Program - a small but important project in the massive $286 billion transportation bill. The Recreational Trails Program, funded by non-highway recreation gas taxes, has helped communities build and repair thousands of miles of trails, involving more than 7,000 projects in all 50 states.

    Funding for the Recreational Trails Program will grow to a total of $370 million over five years, $100 million more than the previous transportation bill passed in 1998.

    "This new bill is great for mountain biking," said IMBA executive director Mike Van Abel. "We're pumped that funding for the Recreational Trails Program will increase. This federal grant program is extremely important to mountain biking's future."

    "For the past two years, our lobbying team in Washington has pushed IMBA's message. All of that hard work has paid off. Everyone who donated funds, visited Capitol Hill during IMBA's lobby days, or contacted their members of Congress, deserves thanks. You helped IMBA convince lawmakers that mountain biking trails are important," added Van Abel.

    The new bill also creates the first-ever national Safe Routes to School Program, and authorizes more money for transportation enhancements and other key programs that support bike facilities. Overall, bicycling and recreation groups are very pleased with the legislation.

    Bicycling organizations collaborated in the transportation bill lobbying...

  • U.S. Congress Backs Take A Kid Mountain Biking Initiative

    Article published:
    August 10, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Steve Medcroft

    For the second year in a row, the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) "National Take...

    For the second year in a row, the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) "National Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day" initiative has gained support from the U.S. Congress. A joint resolution (H. Con. Res. 205/S. Res. 195) sponsored by Senator Richard Burr (NC) and Congresswoman Virginia Fox (NC) has been earmarked for swift passage this fall. Additional co-sponsors are Senator Ken Salazar (CO) and Representative Mark Udall (CO).

    In 2004, thousands of kids participated in more than 100 events nationwide and in several other countries. IMBA expects even greater numbers of participants in 2005.

    The legislation is in memory of Jack Doub, a teenage mountain biker from North Carolina. Doub was an avid teenage mountain biker who had a passion for the sport from an early age, but passed away in 2002. The Jack Doub Memorial Endowment helps fund the event.

    National Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day encourages adults and cycling clubs to introduce kids to the sport of mountain biking. It is held annually on the first Saturday of October – Oct. 1 on this year's calendar.

    Clubs and individuals who are interested in hosting an event should visit http://imba.com/resources/kids/index.html for information and advice. Trips for Kids, an organization that has been helping disadvantaged kids discover mountain biking since 1988, will provide additional assistance. Visit them at http://www.tripsforkids.org/

  • USA World's team finalised

    Article published:
    August 10, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Steve Medcroft

    Following last week's announcement naming the automatic selections to the U.S. squad for the 2005...

    Following last week's announcement naming the automatic selections to the U.S. squad for the 2005 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships in Livigno, Italy later this month, USA Cycling finalised its team by announcing discretionary nominations today. The 21 additional start positions bring the total number of competitors representing the United States at the annual championship event to 43.

    Of the previously announced automatic qualifiers, Alison Dunlap (Colorado Springs, Colo.) declined her nomination to the team. The two-time Olympian and 2001 World Champion has announced her retirement from world-class competition after the 2005 season in which she is focusing solely on domestic-based events including the NORBA National Mountain Bike Series.

    Discretionary picks to the men's cross country squad include 2004 U.S. Olympic Team member Todd Wells (Durango, Colo.), Jeremiah Bishop (Harrisonburg, Va.), Michael Broderick (Chilmark, Mass.), Barry Wicks (Corvallis, Ore.) and current U.S. Elite National Road Race Champion Carl Decker (Bend, Ore.).

    The sole addition to the women's cross-country team is Heather Irmiger (Boulder, Colo.). Irmiger has put up impressive results in cross country events on the NORBA series this year with second and third place finishes respectively at round three in Deer Valley, Utah and round four in Sandpoint, Idaho.

    Other additions include Nick Ranno (Boulder, Colo.), and Sam Jurekovic (Durango, Colo.) in the U23 cross country category and Michael Cummings (Snellville, Ga.), Kyle Hammaker (Marysville, Pa.), Mitchell Peterson (Sandy, Utah) and Tristen Uhl (Smithville, Texas) in the junior men's cross-country discipline.

    The elite men's downhill squad added four as Chris Van Dine (Salt Lake, City, Utah), Gerritt Beytagh (Fletcher, N.C.), Curtis Keene (Fremont, Calif.) and David Klaassenvanoorschot (Riverside, Calif.) earned nominations.

    Melissa Buhl (Chandler, Ariz.), who was an automatic selection to...

  • Australian World's Team announced

    Article published:
    August 10, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    National Mountain Bike selectors have selected the following riders to represent Australia at the...

    National Mountain Bike selectors have selected the following riders to represent Australia at the UCI World MTB Championships in Livigno, Italy from the 31st Aug – 4th September, 2005.

      Junior XC Men: Lachlan Norris, Garry Millburn, Cal Britten, Joel Healy , Andrew Arthur, Daniel Johnston.
      Junior XC Women: Erica Oldfield
      U23 XC Men: Trent Lowe, Shaun Lewis, Daniel McConnell.
      Senior XC Men (Opportunity exists for additional elite seniors to qualify by 25th July): Dylan Cooper , Sid Taberlay, Brent Miller.
      Senior XC Women: Emma Colson, Niki Fisher, Niki Gudex.
      Junior DH Men: Amiel Cavalier, Liam Panozzo, Christopher Panozzo, Ayden Eves, Sam Hocken, Hugh Mansfield, Darren Pokoj, Alex Swann (Reserve)
      Junior DH Women: Tracey Hannah (TBC)
      Elite Men Downhill: Sam Hill (WA), Nathan Rennie (QLD), Chris Kovarik (QLD), Jared Graves (QLD), Michael Hannah (NSW), Joel Panozzo (VIC), Bryn Atkinson (VIC), reserves (Justin Havukainen (NSW), Jared Rando (ACT)).
      Elite Women Downhill: Claire Whiteman (ACT).
      Elite Men Four-Cross: Sam Hill (WA), Nathan Rennie (Qld), Chris Kovarik (Qld), Jared Graves (Qld), Michael Hannah (NSW), Joel Panozzo (Vic), Bryn Atkinson (Vic), reserves (Darren Pokoj (Qld), Justin Havukainen (NSW), Jared Rando (ACT)).
      Elite Women Four-Cross: Katrina Miller (NSW), Claire Whiteman (ACT).

    MTBA congratulates all the fine athletes and wishes them all a very successful campaign at the Worlds in September.

  • Bishop wins Double Assault on Mount Mitchell

    Article published:
    August 10, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Steve Medcroft

    Professional mountain-bike racer Jeremiah Bishop became the first cyclist to win both the Assault on...

    Professional mountain-bike racer Jeremiah Bishop became the first cyclist to win both the Assault on Mount Mitchell road event and the Off-Road Assault on Mount Mitchell mountain bike race, accomplishing both victories in a single year.

    On July 31, Bishop crossed the finish line on his mud-covered Trek bicycle Assault after riding 61 miles with 11,000 feet of elevation gain in just 5:15. In May, Bishop completed the 117mile Assault on Mount Mitchell road ride. Among one thousand entrants, Bishop was the first to summit the 6,648-foot peak with a total ride time of 6:11.

    The 2005 “Assaults” marked Bishop’s first attempt in both cycling events. “It was really fun to be the first rider to win the road Assault on Mount Mitchell and the Off-Road Assault,” Assault had the most climbing I have done over that distance since TransAlp. A super quality course, it was really fun. Also, this victory represents a positive return to form after recovering from a recent illness,” Bishop adds.

    The 2005 Off Road Assault on Mount Mitchell was the most successful running the event with over 265 participants. Bishop, 29, is a professional mountain bike racer on the Trek/Volkswagen Racing Team. In 2003, he won the Gold Medal in the Mountain Bike race at the XIV Pan American Games. Bishop completed the 2004 mountain bike season ranked twentieth internationally.

  • Global MTB racing roundup:

    Article published:
    August 10, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Steve Medcroft

    Besides the NORBA action in Brian Head, Utah and the Canadian TransRockies multi-day stage race, we...

    Besides the NORBA action in Brian Head, Utah and the Canadian TransRockies multi-day stage race, we posted the following results and race reports from around the world:

  • Ryan Trebon sidelined after ‘Toona crash

    Article published:
    August 10, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Steve Medcroft

    By Steve Medcroft Mountain biker Ryan Trebon (Kona Les Gets) was injured in a crash during the...

    By Steve Medcroft

    Mountain biker Ryan Trebon (Kona Les Gets) was injured in a crash during the International Tour de Toona road stage race in Altoona, Pennsylvania July 28. With With less than fifteen kilometers to go in the Holidaysburgh Circuit race, he touched wheels with another racer and hit the pavement, snapping the radius bone (the inner of the two bones that make up the forearm). Trebon was treated at a local hospital and was unable to compete in the following week’s Brian head, Utah NORBA event.

    Trebon says he will probably not make any of the remaining NORBAs either but hopes to recover in time to compete in the Mammoth, California National Championship cross-country race September 18.

  • Brian Head NORBA Wrap Up

    Article published:
    August 10, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Cycling News

    By Steve Medcroft Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski (Subaru Gary-Fisher) and fiancée Heather Irmiger (Tokyo...

    By Steve Medcroft

    Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski (Subaru Gary-Fisher) and fiancée Heather Irmiger (Tokyo Joes) were both winners at Saturday’s Brian Head, Utah NORBA National cross-country race. With his win, Horgan-Kobelski regained the NORBA series lead over Tam Maxxis' Geoff Kabush (who fell to ninth on the day after mechanical problems).

    Twenty-six year old Irmiger’s victory was her first NORBA-series win. "I kind of just played it pretty conservative at first and I knew it was a long time until it got higher and harder, "she said about her approach to the race. But after the lead group slowed, she took a chance and attacked on a long climb. “It's kind of an amateur tactic (to go hard early).” An amateur tactic that paid off when Irmiger was able to hold off 2005 four-time cross-country winner Shonny Vanlandingham by 43 seconds for the win.

    "I'm still still high off it," Irmiger said Tuesday evening. "Still not sleeping much."

    Attempting the Hat Trick

    Power couple JHK and Irmiger’s double cross-country win was the story of the weekend but Jeremiah Bishop came awfully close to a double of his own after racing all three cross-country events.

    “It’s the first time I’ve attempted the hat trick,” he says. “It was a really fun challenge. But it was really a means to an end; just part of the training plan.” A plan that called for Bishop to get in an intense block of competition-level riding over the weekend. “I’m trying to ride into top form for the finals, mountain bike nationals and World Championships month.”

    Although individual racers have won both the cross-country and short-track events at a single NORBA weekend before (most recently Geoff Kabush’s short-track and cross-country wins in Snowmass, Colo. in July) not many racers attempt all three cross-country events. “Ryder Hesjedal tried (the hat trick)...

  • TransRockies exciting first stages

    Formation flying at TransRockies
    Article published:
    August 10, 2005, 1:00 BST
    By:
    Steve Medcroft

    By Steve Medcroft The TransRockies stage race got underway in British Columbia on Sunday. 700 pro...

    By Steve Medcroft

    The TransRockies stage race got underway in British Columbia on Sunday. 700 pro and amateur starters, paired in teams, began the weeklong race across Canada’s portion of the Rocky Mountains with a short-by-race-standards forty-kilometer singletrack prologue. The opener featured 1,150 meters of climbing from Fernie and Sparwood, B.C. Between then and next Sunday, riders cover 600 kilometers and 12,000 meters of rural mountain terrain featuring, according to race organizers, “grueling climbs, technical singletrack and deep un-bridged river crossings.”

    In the prologue, the team of Andreas Hestler and 2004 Canadian national espoir XC champ Marty Lazarski (Rocky Mountain) rose up to their billing as race favorites in the men’s division with a 9:17 win over fellow Canadians Troy Misseghers and Neil Grover (Race Face Mountain Men). "We're really happy with the way the day went," Hestler said at the finish. "Though it's only day one and there's nothing even remotely decided yet, having a nine-minute cushion is way more than we hoped for and gives us a tactical advantage for the moment."

    Normally, tactical advantage means to sit back and let someone else wear themselves out trying to make up the time. But in Stage 2, the Rocky Mountain team found themselves with another chance to open the gap. In the 123 kilometer, 2100 meter route between Sparwood and Elkford, they Rocky Mountain and Race Face Mountain Men rode off the front of the race together until one of the Mountain Men flatted and the pair had to hold back. The pair chased Rocky Mountain to get back into contention but lost an additional six minutes in the overall.

    The race is far from over though. On Friday alone, in the Stage from Sandy McNabb Campground to Bragg Cree, racers have to deal with 110 kilometers (44 of them technical singletrack) and 2300 meters of climbing.

    There’s also more to the race than just the pro...