Nathrop Photos by Jeanne Pastore
This past weekend the Durango DEVO U14 and 19 teams headed over Wolf Creek pass, with dark clouds looming in the distance to take on the Mountain States Cup round 2, Chalk Creek Stampede. On friday 45 parents, athletes and coaches took temporary residence at the campground across the street and sat in cars, under rain tarps and pop up tents and weathered out the storm.
Missing the race course prerides due to the cold rain, the team woke up saturday morning to snow, and prepared for the first event, the Super D, by getting in a quick early preride of the mostly flat course in the hour before the competition. Coach Chad was the first Devo to go and finished in 18th place in the pro field, followed by Director Sarah Tescher with a 7th place. Later in the junior race, Gino Pastore placed a time that beat his coaches, while passing 5 juniors i the tight twisty course, to place 1st in the juniors. Teammates Elliott Saslow, Sepp Kuss and Levi Kurlander finished 2-4th. DEVO riders then placed 7th through 13th, taking up most of the field. James Shahan, Henry larson, Chase Seivert, George McQuinn, Charlie Malone, Cole Mystrom and Shane Ellis in the mix.
The skies had finally began to warm after the Super D for the Short Track and Dual Slalom races. Early on it was Stephan Davoust taking the Dual Slalom win in the Cat 3 15-18 boys. His consistent and safe riding style kept him moving on through the rounds on the fast track. The short track took place on a short 1 mile course, that had been harrowed into the ground by a tractor one year earlier, it was nothing special, but offered suffering and passing lanes, 2 short track staples. Victories were had by Charlie Greenberg in the U14 junior boys, Haakon Sigerslid in the Cat 2 boys, Alicia Rose on the Cat 1 women and Howard Grotts in the Cat 1 boys.
Saturday night the team, parents and coaches all gathered at the campsite and cooked a spagetti meal for 50. The Ellis family donated elk for the sauce, City Market helped us with some discounted pasta, Bread Bakery with bread and cookies, and the Chip Peddler hooked us up with ton of their lime and salt tortilla chips. Before and after dinner the racers prepared for the next days events by playing 500 and a game of 6v6 football, with a deep game winning touchdown pass from Stephan Davoust to Coach Chad Cheeney. The famous “Schwag Fest” took place around the campfire at sunset, bringing parents and kids together to talk about the next days race, and more importantly, hand out bike and random product to the team. Several former Devo athletes and other area junior athletes were invited to join the fun. Smores, more campfire starring, and then bedtime at 930pm.
Sunday morning was freezing. The bike saddles were all frosted white when it was time to leave camp, for the Under 14 races at 7:00am. Early on it was Charlie Greenberg throwing down and taking 2nd place in the junior boys, his best xc finish to date. Then a strong 4th place finish by Cole Mystrom and Charlie Malone and Chase Sievert in 5th and 6th place, with George McQuinn in 8th.
The Under 14 girls were next and the 3 teammates took on their first cross country race together in stride. In an amazing sprint finish, it was India Waller holding on for 2nd place. The sprint had the families and crowd going wild as they were neck and neck the entire final 100yard finish stretch. Soon after, Sophia Quick and Robin Austin came in for 4th and 5th. In the Cat 3 men, Henry Larson took the 5th place finish and then headed off for the hot springs of Mt Prinston for a well deserved soak.
In the Cat2 Boys race it was Haakon Sigerlid with the strong win. Teammates Levi Kurlander and Stephan Davoust battled back and forth all day for 3rd place with Levi taking it in the end after attacking on the final laps first climb. James Shahan rode in for 12th place.
Alicia Rose Pastore continued her win streak in the MSC series and took a very strong xc win by 6 minutes. Alicia is a defending national champion and has her sights set on worlds in Canada later this season.
DEVO’s other defending national champion, Howard Grotts took on the Cat 1 field early by pulling away and keeping a 1 minute gap on the pack for three laps. On the forth lap, he was overtaken along the long fence line straightaway, and rolled in in 2nd place, 20 seconds back. In third place less than 4 minutes behind was Sepp Kuss, who had his best Cat 1 finish yet. Teammates Gino Pastore and Elliott Saslow finished tired and hungry in 4th and 5th place for Durango DEVO.
The Coaches were also out there shredding. In the singlespeed category, Director Sarah Tescher threw down and won the race with U14 coach Jess Reed right on her tail in 2nd place, aboard her new custom bike, a locally made Norse Cycles. And Annie Cheeney, U14 head coach, in her first Cat 1 race took 6th place and accomplished her goal.
Overall it was a great weekend for Durango DEVO. The weather was bad at first, but the group stayed strong and weathered it out only to find 2 gorgeous days of competition ahead. The athletes bonded and the parents got to know one another over pasta and campfire smoke. DEVO likes Nathrop and Nathrop like DEVO.
A: I have lived in Durango for about 16 yrs. I moved to Durango in 1994 in order to train for the Norba National Mtb series, as well as the WC circuit.
Q: You were a pro soinger for Giant Bicycles in the early 2000’s, from that experience, what is is that most young professionals lacked when taking on their first pro season?
A:The discipline to consistently perform self care is something that the neo-pro struggles with the most. “Self care” is a process that is followed religiously by almost all successful pros, as they know it is a recipe for RECOVERY. If you cannot learn to recover well, you will never reach your true potential. Learning time management is maybe what is the underlying problem for most. Their are many variables to consider when trying to do everything right. The more ducks you can get in a row, the better your chances are for success. Periodized & methodical training w/ guidance from a coach is part of the building process. However, building to a peak, is a tearing down of tissue, which required time and self care to heal from. Rest, nutrition, hydration, stretching and structural corrective exercises are just a few of the important variable which have a huge bearing on the rest/recovery cycle. Other smaller details like the night before a race ice bath, or Animas river leg plunge after your hardest workouts, regular chiro, care, afternoon naps post training, eating mini meals rather than stuffing yourself as well as eliminating stress are all part of the balancing act called recovery. Attention to even smaller details like, immediate post race recovery drink, cool down post race, staying out of the hot sun, or removing yourself from the “pit” area of a race site to chill out. Staying in the action is fun and social, however this overstimulation takes its toll over the course of a day and race weekend, contributing to overall fatigue and less energy for your race.
Q: In order, what are the three mtb specific skills that need the most work as a junior racer looking to take it to the next level? and what is your favorite skill to teach?
A: 1) Learning how to pace yourself in a race. 2) Learning how to listen to your body for signs of fatigue and over training. 3) Riding efficiency…… like, pumping transitions, keeping your speed into uphills, recovery on the DH.
-My favorite skill to teach is looking for the exit of a turn in order to hold speed through turns and not drag brakes.
Q: You are also a Massage Therapist, how important is massage to the junior athlete? And what do you see being the benefits of regular massage as an adult professional athlete?
A:Massage is generally something a Jr racer does not come in contact with unless they have made the Jr national team selection and compete at world’s. If a Jr racer has access and resources to massage, it is great to add this to your self care routine. A good sports massage aids in recovery, speeding up the process 2 fold. Regular massage keeps the tissue healthy and free of adhesions form training hard and injury. Incorporation massage into any sports training program allows the athlete to get back to the build cycle more quickly.
Q: You have 2 hours to kill in town on you 5 inch shredder, what Durango loop do you do?
A: Warming up on South Rim trail at the Dietz entrance. Sidewinder, down Skull Rock and over to Carbon Junction, Crites, Anazasi….pedal HWY 3 back to Car.
The FLC Cycling team just returned to the top spot in the ranking of the nations top collegiate programs. The ranking is based on overall performances in the 4 collegiate disciplines, road, track, mtb and cyclocross. FLC is a 10+ time winner in the mtb category, 2 time cross champions and have never won on the track or road. This past weekend the team was in Wisconson at road nationals where they finished 4th overall in the team omnium. Check out the full race report on their website. Congrats to coaches Matt Shriver, Dave Hagen and the support staff and all the athletes that race for FLC. This is a model organization and its in our town!Read More
Durango DEVO Telegraph Hill Climb #2
U19 Boys; Howard 14:44(new DEVO Boys record), Chris 18:53, Gino 17:01, Sepp 16:21, Levi 18:35, Stephan 18:58, James 25:14
U19 Girls; Alicia Rose 20:01(new DEVO girls record)
U14 Boys; Charlie G 22:53, Keenan 25:37, River 25:43, Charlie M 27:58, Henry 33:14, Cole 29:25, Chase 31:50
U14 Girls; Sophia 28:30, India 25:52, Robin 36:09, Sabine 28:45
Coaches and Guest Riders; Annie 24:46, Jess 35:10, Evan 21:57, Brendan 16:25, Greg 16:19, Drew 16:53, Chad 16:20
*Every athlete had their personal record on this attempt!Read More
DEVO coaches Jess Reed and Anne Cheeney are trying to hold onto their title in the 2 person female field and Chad Cheeney is on a 3 person team and also a defending champion. Director Sarah Tescher will also be competing in the single speed 3 person division. Board members, Gaige Sippy will be on Sarah’s Team and Travis Brown will be a part of the rad Legends team that consists of Dave Wiens, Daryl Price and the man, John Tomac. Good luck to all who shred!Read More
U19 Devo athlete Howard Grotts took his second road win in as many tries this past weekend at the Moab Gran Fondo. The mass start 60 mile race took the athletes up that sweet road along the Colorado river and then took a right at 17 miles, and headed towards the La Salls and then back to Durango. Howard broke away early with DWC rider Jon Delacey and worked together to build a 5 minute lead over the peloton. The Howard broke away from Jon when he believed the KOM award to be at the top of a climb, when he arrived at the top of the hill, he realized the KOM was still 10 miles away. Howard continued on solo and collected the KOM and rode in solo the remaining 30 miles to victory. His time was 2 minutes off the course record and race organizers where so impressed with his effort that they awarded him the $250 prize for breaking the course record. Durango’s Jon Delacey finished minutes back in second place. Nice work Howard and Jon. Check out his results here.Read More
The 10th annual Alien Run will be tomorrow. Registration begins at 8am at the race track and the race begins at 10am. This is a rad lollypop loop race, filled with tight desert singletrack and oil rig road racing. The lollypop of the course being the Alien Run trail loop, which at the furthest point out on the course, makes for the best place to attack or be attacked. This small town race has kept it real and offers a cool tshirt and fun community meal after finishing. For more information.Read More
This weekend in Denver the Colorado Cyclefest will take place to benefit the National Interscholastic Cycling Association. Basically a high school mountain bike league has been adopted by the state and schools are being encouraged to start up fall mtb race programs. The Cyclefest will pull Durango bike legends, Ned Overend and Travis Brown along with former pro superstars Dave Weins and Susan Demattei. Durango High School is currently in need of a 9R employee to help spearhead the mission. DEVO team manager Chad Cheeney was on the board for the Colorado league, and is willing to give a hand to anyone interested. Check out more on the event here.Read More