Scheduled for April 17-20, the Sea Otter Classic at Laguna Seca Recreation Area in Monterey, California, is readying for the onslaught of thousands of racers. France's Sabrina Jonnier will be among the international competitors returning to mix it up in the dual slalom. Jonnier will be aiming for her fourth consecutive victory on the course built and designed by Keith Defiebre.
For 90 percent of the 1,500 downhill racers that show up, it might be the only time during their season that they race downhill. This course continues to evolve for 2008 with an improved top section with a new line, a mix of jumps, turns, pedalling sections and hi-rev speed traps.
The Super D will return for its second year. The hybrid downhill and cross country race will require not only power, but also a finely tuned descending strategy to win. It's the opening event on Friday for three days of mountain bike racing. The 2008 edition will be a combination of fast fire road and singletrack descents and maybe a few short double-track climbs - all of which follow a LeMans-style, mass start race by category.
The short track and cross country races are scheduled for Saturday and Sunday respectively. The cross country course will take riders all over Fort Ord. Maps with the route will be available March 14.
This year's event will benefit the Davis Phinney Foundation, which supports Parkinson's disease research and wellness, and IMBA California, which organizes advocacy and trailbuilding efforts statewide and strengthens California mountain bike clubs. For more information, visit www.seaotterclassic.com.