March 21/99 9:17 am - Shep's Report from Sea Otter
Posted by Editor on 03/21/99
To hurl one's body from a three foot high mound of dirt should be relatively easy given our status as 'professional' riders. The problem is we start calculating how much speed, pull up, and angle of the bike we need in order to clear the obstacle on the other side (also known as doubles). Interfering with this process are the people failing to make the correct calculation.
As we sit and watch, bodies and bikes blend together in a swirl of color, almost artwork for a brief moment until the impacting sound of body, machine and ground jolt me into disbelief. The sound of a collar bone breaking is usually enough to turn me away from attempting any maneuver, but my competitiveness keeps telling me to try the jump and use it for victory. As I descended into sleep, the words, "Chris do the jump" began to pulse in rhythm with the throbbing of tendinitis in my left knee.....
After losing sleep I decided it would be best to not jump, and instead I would concentrate on going hard off the start to avoid the eminent cluster at the top of the first climb. From the gun I grabbed the lead with Roel Paulissen and missed the ensuing chaos; however, trailing were Evans, Brenes, Vollet, and Frischknecht. As the laps progressed, the mud holes opened up waiting for an opportunity to grasp at wheels. Paulissen, and Frischknecht went down, but the highlight was (and I witnessed this) Tcherkassov imitating a rally car by plowing into the crowd off the massive single jump! When the bell lap rang VanDooren, Juarez and Craig passed me...Chiotti meanwhile had attacked, and in fine style (doing a table top over the doubles) overtook the leader's jersey.
Dirt Crit Results
White Rasta 18th/13th overall
Green 22nd/17th o a
Hestler 35th/ 28th o a
Grover 26th/37th o a
Tourville 58th/80th o a
Kabush 64th/ 56th
Manitou Dual Slalom
1. Katrina Miller (Jamis)
2. Leigh Donovan (Intense Pro Team)
3. Cheri Elliott (Maxxis)
4. Tara Llanes (Mt Dew/Specialized)
1. Mike King (Haro)
2. Dave Cullinan (Schwinn/Toyota)
3. John Tomac (Tomac/Manitou)
4. Johan Engstrom (Volvo/Cannondale)