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Fredrick and Howe hose 'em in Marin County

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National Champions abounded at the Tamarancho Dirt Classic.

National Champions abounded at the Tamarancho Dirt Classic.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Rachel Lloyd, Marin County local and two-time Pro Super D national champion and single speed world champion has won the Tamarancho Dirt Classic in the past, but found herself busy this year with new son Henry.

Rachel Lloyd, Marin County local and two-time Pro Super D national champion and single speed world champion has won the Tamarancho Dirt Classic in the past, but found herself busy this year with new son Henry.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Mountain bike legend Otis Guy cools down following his finish. Though temperatures were in the high 80s, Otis is used to worse - he's a firefighter for the Ross Valley Fire District in Marin County.

Mountain bike legend Otis Guy cools down following his finish. Though temperatures were in the high 80s, Otis is used to worse - he's a firefighter for the Ross Valley Fire District in Marin County.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Ned Overend and Joe Breeze greet each other after Ned's second-place finish.

Ned Overend and Joe Breeze greet each other after Ned's second-place finish.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Joe Breeze and Ned Overend, two of the most legendary figures in mountain bike history, still going fast after all these years.

Joe Breeze and Ned Overend, two of the most legendary figures in mountain bike history, still going fast after all these years.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Former XC World Champion Rob Anderson is greeted by his mechanic Anson Vaughn following the race.

Former XC World Champion Rob Anderson is greeted by his mechanic Anson Vaughn following the race.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Perhaps a future champion, two-year-old Vaughn Kirberg rides his push-bike through the crowds following the race.

Perhaps a future champion, two-year-old Vaughn Kirberg rides his push-bike through the crowds following the race.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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An original aluminum Cunningham from 1982, made less than a few miles from the Tamarancho race course by Wilderness Trail Bikes co-founder and Mountain Bike Hall of Famer Charlie Cunningham.

An original aluminum Cunningham from 1982, made less than a few miles from the Tamarancho race course by Wilderness Trail Bikes co-founder and Mountain Bike Hall of Famer Charlie Cunningham.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Marin Bikes' Brian Astell post-race and post-crash.

Marin Bikes' Brian Astell post-race and post-crash.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Local component manufacturer WTB was on hand with latest offerings in tyres and saddles.

Local component manufacturer WTB was on hand with latest offerings in tyres and saddles.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Perfect post-ride nutrition.

Perfect post-ride nutrition.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Otis Guy and Joe Breeze, pre-race.

Otis Guy and Joe Breeze, pre-race.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Otis Guy, former pro mountain bike racer, Mountain Bike Hall of Fame member and bike builder, blazes through the finish area.

Otis Guy, former pro mountain bike racer, Mountain Bike Hall of Fame member and bike builder, blazes through the finish area.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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By the fourth lap, Ned Overend found himself riding through traffic in his pursuit of Dario Fredrick.

By the fourth lap, Ned Overend found himself riding through traffic in his pursuit of Dario Fredrick.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Tamarancho Dirt Classic race director (and 2008 Masters XC National Champion) gives pre-race instructions to the pro field.

Tamarancho Dirt Classic race director (and 2008 Masters XC National Champion) gives pre-race instructions to the pro field.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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The nearly 30-mile course consisted of four and a half laps of the best singletrack in Marin County, all within the Camp Tamarancho trail network.

The nearly 30-mile course consisted of four and a half laps of the best singletrack in Marin County, all within the Camp Tamarancho trail network.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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The pro field start was led out by Marin Bikes' Brian Astell (centre)

The pro field start was led out by Marin Bikes' Brian Astell (centre)
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Single-speed racer Brue Syvertsen of San Francisco gets underway.

Single-speed racer Brue Syvertsen of San Francisco gets underway.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Eventual winner and reigning CX National Champion (40-44) Dario Fredrick reaches the top of one of the many climbs overlooking San Francisco Bay.

Eventual winner and reigning CX National Champion (40-44) Dario Fredrick reaches the top of one of the many climbs overlooking San Francisco Bay.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Ned Overend made a surprise appearance, adding a World Champion to the long list of National Champions on hand for the day.

Ned Overend made a surprise appearance, adding a World Champion to the long list of National Champions on hand for the day.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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By the end of the second lap, Ned Overend had started to close the gap on Dario Fredrick to 30 seconds.

By the end of the second lap, Ned Overend had started to close the gap on Dario Fredrick to 30 seconds.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Barbara Howe of Team Vanderkitten (and current Masters Cyclocross National Champion) won the pro women's field.

Barbara Howe of Team Vanderkitten (and current Masters Cyclocross National Champion) won the pro women's field.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Joe Breeze, Mountain Bike Hall-of-Fame member and winner of 10 Marin County Repack downhill races, powers up a climb on lap three.

Joe Breeze, Mountain Bike Hall-of-Fame member and winner of 10 Marin County Repack downhill races, powers up a climb on lap three.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)
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Whole Athlete Cat 1 Juniors swept the podium in the males and females races; here Sofia Hamilton, Victoria Yoham and Kate Courtney celebrate Hamilton's first place finish.

Whole Athlete Cat 1 Juniors swept the podium in the males and females races; here Sofia Hamilton, Victoria Yoham and Kate Courtney celebrate Hamilton's first place finish.
(Image credit: Wil Matthews)

The annual Tamarancho Dirt Classic offers little more than bragging rights, but since those bragging rights are awarded in Marin County, an acknowledged home of the mountain bike, the stakes are high.

Contested by a star-studded field including many current and former national champions and Mountain Bike Hall of Fame members, this near-30-mile race on technical singletrack and steep climbs saw local Marin racer Dario Fredrick (Whole Athlete Cycling Team) win the day.

Fredrick, current masters national cross country champion, decided to race in the pro category after learning the masters group would start behind younger riders less familiar with the course.

As the cool June fog enveloped San Francisco, the long-awaited sunshine smiled upon the Tamarancho Dirt Classic, in Marin County, just 23 miles north. An exceptionally cold, wet spring in Northern California has made training and racing here uncharacteristically gritty. Yet the conditions today couldn't have been more perfect on what is arguably some of the world's most beautiful singletrack.

Legends turned out for the event, including former Mountain Bike World Champion, Ned Overend, and local Marin legends, Joe Breeze and Otis Guy. Overend, who will be 55 this year, raced in the pro field, while Breeze and Guy raced in the masters categories.

"I thought I would be racing for fifth place," said Fredrick. "I can't believe I won!"

Fredrick took the lead on the first of four trips up the 28 percent grade Dead Heifer fire road and built his lead to a minute and a half on the subsequent three laps. A resurgent Overend closed the gap to within 15 seconds on the last lap, but then lost contact and crossed the line in second.

Summit Bikes rider Jim Hewett salvaged third after Marin Bikes pro rider Brian Astell crashed hard and lost significant time on the third of four laps.

"I had a lot of fun," said Overend. "The course was beautiful."

Barb "Barbarella" Howe (Vanderkitten), also from the San Francisco Bay Area, won the women's pro race. Other notable victories included podium sweeps in the Cat 1 Juniors male and female races by the Whole Athlete junior development team.

The race is a qualifier for Nationals as part of the USA Cycling/NORBA Alison Dunlap Junior Mountain Bike Series, held for the first time in Marin, and the only one on the West Coast in 2010.

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