Sunday, March 8, 2009

Leadville Winter mountain bike race and Ski Joring

The view of Mt Elbert from Chris and Kathy's house, where we stayed the night before the race
Some guy before a jump, notice the bigger jump in the background and the ring holders on the right of the skier, your left.

A skier eating it right in front of me!

Saturday afternoon Chris, Marni, Erik, Michelle and I went up to Leadville.  We stayed up the night before as the race was at 9AM on Sunday, DST.  Chris and Marni won a dinner that they had to ski into, and it was apparently pretty nice.  Erik, Michelle, and I went to Rosie's, a bar restaurant sort of place just off Harrison in Leadville.  I had a Chilli Jalepeno Bison burger.  There was so much chilli on it, I could barely find the burger!  It was awesome.  
Sunday we woke up to very cold weather.  I think the temperature was 15.  32 racers showed up for the race.  Shawn and Bill met us just before the start.  As much as the cold weather sucked, it made for a really fast coarse.  It started with a gradual climb, and then there was a lot of up and down.  Because of solid snow, I was able to rail corners on the snow at 17-20 mph.  I paced another SS'er, who must have been a local, as he said hi to a few runners that were going the other way on the trail.  I got gapped a bit, but kept a steady pace.  With about a mile to go, I caught up to him and flew by him. 
After the awards, we found a place to watch ski joring, which apparently is an annual tradition in Leadville.  Horses pull skiers at 50 mph over jumps, through gates that they sort of slalom through, and they have to spear rings with a stick and keep them on their arm.  If you can't imagine, it is completely crazy.  The coarse was taking 16 to 20 seconds to complete.  We saw a bunch of crashes, like the one in the photo above.  Some of the jumps were maybe 8 ft high.   

No comments:

Post a Comment