Nat Ross diary: If you build it, they will come

I just got off the plane from riding my mountain bike in Cleveland, Ohio. My team-mate Greg Watts...

I just got off the plane from riding my mountain bike in Cleveland, Ohio. My team-mate Greg Watts and I flew in to Ray's Indoor Bike Park for this season's Grand Opening. With 97,000 square feet of indoor mountain bike terrain, Ray's is the largest and only place of its kind in the world. Ray's features a full cross country course; beginner, sport and expert sections; a killer head-to-head pump track; box jumps; a foam pit; ramps; and a skate-type bowl. It is absolutely mind blowing and was created by a bike enthusiast superhero "Ray" making a place for riders of all abilities to ride indoors when it is cold and crappy outside. Joe and Lindsey are two locals who gave me a tour and some pointers once inside.

We were not the only ones in town for the Grand Opening. Another of my favorite sponsors SRAM was there to dial in the lounge and hang out spots. Several years ago, they put in a foosball table and air hockey. This year, they styled out the lounge even more and brought a load of stickers for the kids. Along with SRAM, Dirt Rag, Red Bull, and Fox had a presence as well. There were a several pros in the house for the weekend. Aaron Chase and Jeff Lenosky were throwing down right beside Greg all weekend long.

"Why was I at Rays?" you might ask. Well, a lot of people there were calling me the "24-hour racer". Of course that's what I do, but there is a lot more to my mountain bike lifestyle. For me, riding my bike is a way of life. Actually, it is my life! I chose to skip two UCI 'cross races over the weekend to enjoy time on my bike and check out something different. I do my best to keep it fresh and exciting weather it is the travel or the new people I meet.

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