Mountain bike racers flock to Granby for Nationals
July 15, 2010
This week has been exciting watching cars and trucks ride into town filled with mountain bikes and racers. I saw one truck with six bikes hanging over the tailgate. There is race energy all over Granby as bikers and all the product sponsors with their gear trailers pull into town.
I met two amazing bikers who are competing in the SolVista Nationals on Saturday to talk about racing in Grand County and how they prepared for this race.
Coreen Wright lives in Evergreen and has a second home in Fraser. She and her husband spend almost every weekend here. She started mountain biking when they were dating and he took her on her first mountain bike ride on the Creekside Trail. “I thought to myself, if I could do this for the rest of my life, how cool,” she says.
Her husband secretly signed her up for her first race. She says, “It was so much fun. As you wait for the start you talk to everyone. Then during the race you talk back and forth. The camaraderie at the end of the race made it so much fun. If anyone is considering mountain biking racing, it’s the most fun you’ll ever have.”
She has been racing for over four years and competes at major bike events such as the USA Marathon National Championships (Firecracker 50) in Breckenridge where she placed 3rd in her age group: 40-49. She qualified for this weekend’s race at the Rabbit Valley Rally in Fruita.
Sheri Boltz lives in Morrison and has a second home in Fraser. Her husband got her into mountain biking after ten years of skiing at Winter Park Resort. In preparation for her race this weekend, she skied all winter, both cross country and downhill, then started mountain biking in March, traveling to Fruita and Moab.
Sheri has been racing well leading up to the SolVista Nationals, placing 2nd in her age group (40-49) at the Firecracker 50 and 1st at the Winter Park Mountain Bike Series race: Valley Point-to-Point.
I asked her for some secrets on racing well:
“After years of riding I feel like I’ve come into my own,” she says. “This last race in Winter Park unleashed a new me. I pushed myself harder than ever. I kept saying to myself, push, push, relax, smile, focus. Attitude makes such a difference. I’m serious but when I remember to smile and have fun, I do well.”
Both women agree that the best way to learn how to race is watching others and talking to people. Sheri says, “You watch the lines bikers take and your own riding develops over the years.” They compete often in the Winter Park races and it has prepared them well for racing all over the state. “You won’t find a better race environment than in Winter Park. The organization is fantastic, there is a low-key start, timing is never an issue and there are great course marshals and volunteers.”
Coreen and Sheri are on the Justin’s-Titus Cycling Team. You can follow their success on the team blog: justins-titus-cycling.blogspot.com and see how other team members do in the race.
The most important aspect of their racing and lifestyle is that age doesn’t matter. They are racing 40-49 and it is one of the fastest age groups. It’s going to be a great race on Saturday morning. Their race starts at 8:30 a.m.