By Steve Medcroft
The NORBA National Series moves to Brian Head Resort in Utah this weekend. Although Brian Head has hosted 12-hour endurance races and downhills before, this will the first stop for the NORBA series in Utah’s scenic canyon lands.
With only three races remaining in the cross country series, the men’s title is still up for grabs between Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski (Subaru-Gary Fisher) and Geoff Kabush (Team Maxxis). The lead has changed hands twice during the season with Kabush holding the most points heading into the weekend. JHK says he would love to unseat the defending series champion and this may be the race for it to happen; Brian Head sits at 9,600 feet, a similar elevation to JHK’s Colorado home.
But after a win in Aspen, Kabush said he’s finding great form at altitude too; fitness he hopes to hold through these final three NORBA’s and take into the Livigno, Italy World Championships at the end of the month (also at altitude). And let’s not count out the fact that riders like Adam Craig (Giant) and Todd Wells (GT Hyundai) would love to stand on top of a NORBA podium this year. It should be an aggressive race.
In the women’s cross country, Shonny Vanlandingham (Luna Chix) will be trying for her fifth NORBA cross country win of the season. If she pulls it off, she all but control the series, which as defending series champion she says cares a great deal. "I think winning the NORBA series is a great accomplishment for any racer. It truly shows who’s been the best, most consistent rider all season long."
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