Highbridge All-City XC…

Mountain bike racin in tha ghetto!!

Mountain bike racin' in tha ghetto!!

So this morning Chuck-E-Cheese and I headed into the NY of C for for mountain bike racin’ in the ghetto!! Well sorta ghetto. Ghetto compared to living in Piscataway anyway. I’ve been looking forward to this race since early in the season, I had so much fun last year I couldn’t wait to get back!! Jamie and crew of NYCMTB did a great job of throwing together a VERY challenging and extremely unique course. The loop starts on a steep paved climb, then dips into some uber technical rock gardens followed by some super-flowy fun singletrack before dumping you onto a sidewalk where you rip along a busy NYC street!! Then it’s into another tech section, onto a long paved section, down some stairs, more uphill pavement, UP some stairs, MORE UPHILL PAVEMENT, then back into the woods!! There was maybe 2 feet worth of trail to recover on!! OUCH!!

Photo by AnthonyCollinsPhoto.com

Photo by AnthonyCollinsPhoto.com

Right from the gun I knew this race was going to hurt. It was pretty hot and humid, I knew the pavement sections were gonna melt me!! I took the holeshot off the line and pushed hard up the 1st climb, I sat up just before we went into the woods because I didn’t want to blow myself up 2 minutes in. I went into the singletrack in 4th wheel or so. The group pretty much stayed together during the prologue and the first lap. I moved into 3rd wheel somewhere along the way and then focused on getting back onto Josh and the leader, who opened up a small gap on me. Saw 29er Crew team-mate Jason Hilimire with a mechanical early on too. Lap after lap I could see Josh just ahead of me but the course was so fast and I was already PINNED so I couldn’t seem to put in the effort to bridge. During lap #4 I realized he was starting to pull away a little more. F@CK!! HARD!! PAIN!! Soon after I started looking back to see where #4 was. Nowhere. On the long paved section you could see a long way back and there was no one around, we had a BIG gap on the rest of the field so I “sat-up” and enjoyed the rest of the race at tempo. I got to yell at the crack-heads and goof around when I passed the course marshalls. I crossed the line smiling, beaten, but smiling!! I wish they did more races like this!! 3rd place. I’ll take it. One spot better than last year!!

Photo by FullFramePro.com

Photo by FullFramePro.com

So the 29er Crew was out reppin’ hard!! We took 3 podium spots!! Thom Parsons got 3rd in Pro on a SingleFly, I got 3rd in Cat1 30-39, and Chris DeNoma got 1st in Cat2 SS. Matt Snow was leading his race until a flat put him back to 5th in Cat2 40-49. And Jason Hilimire had a mechanical that took him out all together, sucks!! Afterwards, a bunch of us got back some much needed calories by hitting Vegetarian’s Paradise 2 in the village. Mmmmmm. Crispy Soul. Vegan mashed potatoes. So good!! Thanks to Jamie and the NYCMTB crew for putting on a great race!! A big shout out to my homies at Gary Fisher, Ej at Crankskins, and Roger at FinKraft Coaching for all the support!! See you all next round!!

-Jim.

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