On October 1st the Durango Composite High School team travelled to the hills near the Winter Park ski area to show what they were made of. The preride on Saturday featured perfect, cool weather and electricity was in the air…literally. The aspens were golden. The singletrack was smooth. Tactics were discussed. Bikes were prepped. Riders began to feel the tension that the next day would bring. The scene was set, and we all fell asleep listening to elk bugles and coyote yelps.
Race Day: The sun rose and there wasn’t a single cloud in the sky. The lightning, thunder, and drizzle that had put our campfire out the night before was long gone. This day was made for speed. Breakfast, a quick camp breakdown, and we were off to the pit zone and race course. The crew stretched their legs out on the short ride to the course and had time to reflect on what the strategy would be once their race began. Push hard on the uphill start and get near the front of the pack before the ghost town. Hammer the double track hill and get ready for the dusty rutted descent and the water bars along the way. Speed across the dam, drop a few gears and overtake the hikers on the steep hill. Man it’s tough to clean that thing. Now corner through the aspens, hydroplane across the creek, blast the level home stretch and maintain your speed through the meandering finishing corral. That shouldn’t be that bad……
First out was India, racing in the super fast varsity class. She turned 2 quick laps and made her move on the third. Riding in third place going into the finishing zig-zags she managed to completely close the 1min 30s gap on the rider in 2nd and it came down to a sprint finish. She gave it all that she had but in the end she took third by a gap of only 2 seconds. Had the course been 100 feet longer who knows what would have happened! Robin followed in the next wave and had a great day on the course. She started fast, stayed fast, and ended fast! The result – a second place finish and the overall JV Girls Leader position. Congrats!! Next up was Sierra. She took to the race course with her usual focus, power, and determination. She came through the pit after lap 1 and gave us all the impression that she was going to own it on lap 2. She did just that and gave a massive effort, earning the #2 finish. Very proud!
The boys were up next and represented just as well as the girls did. The clouds never seemed to come back and by now the course was just downright hot! Nano and Jack took off in a giant wave of nearly 40 riders. It was a precarious start with a pileup that happened just off of Nano’s wheel. The dust cleared and it was obvious that they were here to hammer and have fun. Nano and Jack went so fast on their first laps that I almost missed them at the feed zone! They both started near the back of the pack and through the race managed to pick racers off one by one and move way up and secure solid finishes! Way to go. This was Jack’s first race EVER and he made us all really proud. Andrew, racing in the JV boys division, was the last racer to start, and he had to endure some seriously hot and dusty conditions. He had to wrestle with a huge field as well and managed to stick to a solid game plan. Quick start, punch it through every inch of the course, and stay consistently fast. That earned him a solid finish as well and
put the team at a tie for second place in the overall division 2 standings at this point in the series. All of the riders put out maximum effort and had huge smiles once the dust settled. An incredible day to say the least – zero mechanicals, 100% fun. Great job team!!!
-Coach Dave Heershap
Check the Results Here

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