Duryea DH post race report

NJ Jess

Active Member
Awesome fun first time!

Well, I'm still recovering from my first DH race. It was great fun and quite a learning experience. Mountainbikers are way cool people that are all about having a good time and enjoying "the ride." I drove out there on Thursday night after practicing some jumps and drops with some friends. I walked the course on Friday and was amazed at how steep two sections were. I had to stop and review some of the jumps, bridge cross overs, and 2 very steep and dusty trials.

I did two practice runs of the top on Friday, never really making a complete run since there wasn't a shuttle. Then my bike chain kept falling off. Then on my second run my chain broke wrapped around my derailuer housing and ripped the barrel off. Thank goodness the Rocky Mountain dealer hooked me up with a minor charge, but great turnaround.

On Saturday, I finally got some insight as to how to go down the steep stuff. It then became a lot of fun, but still scary. The other racers were very friendly. And told me about better lines and what to do to make the bike rail. I didn't know what to do about my chain constantly coming off though. I have a double since I actually ride this bike at the park too. I thought off putting it big to big to stretch the chain, but I was now spinning 100 rpms though a rock section. With no momentum, you would simply fall into the crevates.

Everyone then said I needed a chain guide which was good, but it then cost me $150 to get it and have it put on by the e13 guys. Three hours later I had my bike back after I rode my SS to an ATM,...they only took cash. Unfortunately, the shuttles to the top had stopped, so I couldn't see if it worked.

The next day, I got there early to do a practice run. Well, my chain still fell. I did complete the entire course without stopping though. Good, me thinks,....I could actually do this. Back to the e13 guys, they have my bike til 11:15, I need to shuttle up to the top for the 12noon start. Now I'm nervous.

I got all my gear on, bottle of water, and pushed my bike to the shuttle trucks. The trucks were uhaul box trucks with drivers constantly doing brake checks. It was quite a circus.

At the top I met the other 5 women, 2 pros and the rest of us sport. I told the other sports I had dead last locked up and told them to yell like hell to pass me since I couldn't hear anything with the full face helmet.

I was second to start with a racer going every 30 secs. I was soooo nervous I almost fell off the start ramp. It's a tough start with 100 or so DH racers all watching you. On the word GO, I went. I just got half way through the rock garden when my chain fell once again into the granny gear! Spin like mad I did. Pumping the bike really helped too. Once past the rocks I tried switching the triggers to get the dang chain back up,...it worked. I then flew down the rocky pro line because it was more of a straight shot. Just like in the vids, I was way back on the bike, and it worked. Yippee!

After that I just kept pedalling and flying over the smaller obsticles. I think XC really helped me here. I also kept breathing cause pedaling with your seat so low sucks. My kneecaps really burned. I just wanted to make it down the mountain in one piece without crashing. I couldn't see the girl in front of me, but everyone yelled,. keep pedaling. (that means their close, they tell me.) Going around one of the turns, I could see a VT rider. She's fast! I pedaled faster in hopes as not to crash infront of her. But then came the steep sections, so I prayed a bit and threw the bike forward, skid my rear tire into the turn and let go of the brake. Zoom! We were seconds apart, but I don't think I slowed her finish any.

It was a sweet finish without injury which is what I wanted. We didn't know the times until all the racers had gone and I actually placed 3rd!!! It was neat. I do hope more women come out to race, cause it was really a lot of fun. I definitely believe it has helped me mentally with my XC too. I'm teaching a kids, middle and high school clinic/race this weekend, so I hope to use what I learned to get more kids out there. Good luck of all of the racers going to the Gravity series races. It was great to meet Trish, Hillary, Carolynn, Anne, and all the rest. Hope to ride the trails again with you!

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Way to go Jess...

Great race report. Happy to hear you had a great time and didn't get hurt. Sorry to hear about the chain mishaps though. What was you're number? Did Steph get any pictures of you?

drops at Allaire

Actually Allaire has that big sand pit that works well. I'm still practicing. I have a dirtjumping (dj) friend that is helping me out as well as Frank on the drops. It's the super steep stuff that I'm coming to grips with. I once had a separated shoulder, so mentally that is what I remember when doing steep stuff. As you know, I travel a lot in NJ, NY, and CT. I bring my big and go find stuff.
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