It’s Almost September – Here’s Our July Recap :)

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Stan's No Tubes

Our NoTubes Elite Women’s Team is so diverse and strong as demonstrated by the variety of races and events that we do all around the country.  July included National Championships, Cross races, Women’  skills clinics, Junior Camps, World Enduro races, Pro XCT races, local races and big stage races.  It is tough to juggle all that at times, but we feel it is a testament to our dedication to our sport, our community and our future.  We couldn’t do it without the support and stoke of our sponsors.  We always race harder  when we know our sponsors have trusted us to represent their products.  We also gladly accept that people and kids look up to us as positive role models as professional athletes and we hope to help and inspire all that we come in contact with.

Jenny Smith:
“I had our daughter Jade on May 21, She’s incredibly fun, I’ve been getting back into the swing of life and back on the bike, albeit by Jades rules! Here’s a pic of us in the chariot, so stoked, this will become more and more my fitness tool.”

Jenny with chariot

“We just put on a high school mountain bike development camp. Organised and hosted by the Western mountain sports team I coach, we utilized the campus facilities and the many resources in Gunnison county. It was well received and a camp we will continue to grow each year.”

Western Skills Camp at Hartman Rocks

Western Skills Camp at Hartman Rocks

Here’s some feedback from the camp:
I wanted to write to say thanks again.  I could not be more pleased with the program your team put together this past week. What I had hoped for after returning from the camp is that Brendan would be even more excited to ride.  Your team accomplished just that!  During a ride close to home with Brendan last evening he talked non-stop about how much he enjoyed the camp and being mentored by your team. His enthusiasm to try more difficult trails is what I would consider at an all-time high and we are doing or first race of the year this Thursday in Highlands Ranch. AWESOME!

As a parent I am certain you can appreciate that all we want is for us son to have the opportunity to participate with a group in something he loves.  The fact that your team have fueled his enthusiasm for a life-long sport means the world to us!  So “thank you” seems not quite enough.

Sue Haywood:
I was asked to be a tour guide for the  Bike Magazine crew as they were doing a story on where I live in Canaan Valley, West Virginia.  I treated them to the Moon Rocks, SplashDam and Mini Moab trails.  We lit fireworks with the mayor of Davis, drank moonshine and mingled with local characters.  Its always satisfying when people from other regions love your own trails.

I also had the pleasure of mentoring a group of USACycling junior development riders on the tough trails around Canaan.  It makes me so happy to see the next generation of riders not only building their engines, but cultivating their skills of log hops, manualing mud puddles and picking lines through gnarly rock sections.

I’m always teaching skills clinics and I constantly want to improve my own.  Even after 20 plus years of mountain biking, I feel like there is so much to learn still.  I signed up for a women’s downhill mountain biking weekend at Snowshow Mountain Resort.  Even though I organize women’s weekends all the time, I had never actually paid to take one.  It was worth the money and I had a real blast.  The teachers were Angi Weston and Lindsey Voreis.  They were very organized, knew their stuff and were so energetic and enthusiastic!  I made progress with some jumps and drops and body position on the bike.

Sue . . . enduro-ready!

Sue . . . enduro-ready!

I drove out to Winter Park for the Colorado Freeride Festival and 4th stop on the World Enduro Series.  I loved this event last year and was really looking forward to it and riding the Jekyll mostly downhill.  Of course, a bit of nerves and altitude took over when I got there.  There are lots of jumps, high speed berms and sprinting.  I honestly didn’t do as well as I’m capable to do.  I think its a bit hard trying to straddle the fence of xc and downhill.  I’m a classic diesel who has spent most of my career being conservative on the downhills to save it for the uphills. Learning to jump at 41 years of age is pretty darn cool, but it will take a lots more practice to be able to clear the huge gap jumps that the female winners were doing.  There was an amazing turnout of racers and spectators.  Enduro racing is really hot right now for good reason and a great venue for all of our sponsor’s products.

Race shot courtesy of VAST Action Sports

Race shot courtesy of VAST Action Sports

Sarah Kaufmann:
Wisconsin Pro XCT: After a disappointing start to Pro XCT racing a few weeks before, I was happy to find some legs and snag a top 10 in the XC race. The course included some technical bits with rocks and roots to keep it interesting. Despite some logistical hiccups with the race organization, I had a great time! I made it a three-fer weekend and took 12th in the STXC and 5th in the Super D.

The following weekend, I found the course for the National Championships to be one of the most fun I have raced. It was technical and challenging with a mix of big and small rocks, some wet, some dry and some steep butt-on-the-rear-wheel-chin-to-bars descents! I was really excited for the race and seemed to have decent legs again. Though I did not have a great start, I managed to move up through the race and was riding in 11th on the last lap when I broke my chain. Disappointing for sure, but as the overused cliche goes, ‘that’s racing.’ I would rather have good legs and a mechanical than dead legs and a perfect bike. Though neither is really ideal.

Sarah Races in PA

Sarah Races in PA

I wound up 17th and 7th in STXC and Super D at Nationals. I had fun in both races but wasn’t entirely thrilled with either result. My Cannondale SL 650b freak bike did win the hardtail category for Super D (although that category doesn’t actually exist) so I took some solace in that.

While I was home, I led a skills clinic for 21 super enthusiastic women. It is always cool to see women develop some confidence and even get aggressive on the bike. My favorite part is when someone learns to wheelie. I think there is no skill more satisfying to get.

Sarah Leads a Skills Clinic at Snowbasin in Ogden, UT

Sarah Leads a Skills Clinic at Snowbasin in Ogden, UT

I’m on my way home to Massachusetts as I write this. I will go home for a few days then head to Vermont for the final Pro XCT, then Mont Ste. Anne for the North American World Cup. Though I’ll be racing for not-last, it is such a huge thrill and honor to line up for a World Cup, I can’t wait!

Amanda Carey:
“This summer has been wonderfully different! I’ve tried a bunch of new events, stayed closer to home and actually maintained a garden. The weather has been great, training is going well!”  Amanda won the Pierre’s Hole 50 miler and currently sits in the lead of the infamously hard Breck Epic.  You can read Amanda’s blog for the full story. http://www.notubesracing.com/womenselite/one-crazy-month-amandas-july-report/

Amanda Cross - photo credit: Chris See

Amanda Cross – photo credit: Chris See