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I ride those all the time. Very fun area with some technical sections. I bet racing on them would be pretty cool and kind of level out the "roadie" type XC riders who are use to smooth adn fast.
 

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Even though it was short (12ish miles) & relatively flat it was definitely one of the more demanding courses I've raced on in years. Of course it is only early March but dang, my arms are still sore two days later. :)

-DP
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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I was there. I decided to try for a clean race, and not worry about my time. So my time wasn't too good, but I didn't get hurt. Saw some pretty hard crashes, though.

BuDu's races always make me look forward to races that have real climbs. :p
 

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my friend and i were out on the toy tree side and ran into a guy warming up. he said deliverance and holy roller were being utilized. 3 laps of deliverance and holy roller? good grief. here i was thinking about giving "racing" a shot, but that sounds brutal! unless there's a prize for DFL, then sign me up!
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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The Indie Series races are typically on simpler, although frequently more aerobic courses. I haven't done the complete BuDu series yet, but people were saying this is the most technically demanding course on their calendar.
 

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Does anyone else think that sucks? Mountain bike racing shouldn't be more about aerobic fitness than technical skill. It's "mountain biking' after all. Not, road racing on dirt. The courses "should" be technically demanding and the riders should be blown up at the end.
But, that's just my old school 2 cents...
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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Stick with DH. :) Or Trials, maybe.

I think XC racing should reward a complete rider. That means both handling skill and aerobic fitness. Highly technical courses are still won by riders with better fitness levels. They're just better bike handlers than the riders who win courses with a lot of vertical, or maybe they were more aggressive at the very beginning about getting into the singletrack before the traffic jam. The riders who win courses with a lot of vertical still have to have good handling skills. Really, it's a balance. For me, courses on trails that are twisty for the sake of stuffing them into a small piece of land, with clearance and passing opportunities as tight as in Black Diamond are maybe taking the balance a little too far in the direction of bike handling. I thought that doing a time trial was a good way to hold an event at Tapeworm, and Black Diamond felt even tighter to me. The Dash Point course wasn't doing me any favors, but I think it was a pretty good balance.
 

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I think the trails at Black Diamond are pretty mellow and not all that techical compared a lot of places around here. There are roots, rocks and a few tight turns, but nothing is overly technical and there are no real hill climbs.

Are most XC races on fireroad or smooth buff trails or something? I guess living near and riding the Tapeworm for the past 10+ years has skewered my prospective of trail difficulty. I think a good race should require some technical skill to go along with a good fitness level.

Either way it still sounds like fun!
 

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Different strokes for different folks. As flat stages favor the sprinters, climbers waiting for the climbs, same as early racing budu series. the first 2 courses of the budu series played 2 none of my strengths tight rat maze courses( i need to stretch my legs a little bit) still sitting top ten 40 + expert. Everybody's definition of a mountain bike race is different i like big loop races Cap forest comes to mind lots of climbing(Remember MOUNTAIN BIKING you know mountains hills that sort of thing) hell i'm just glad we have some races Indie series looks pretty sad 8 races down to 3-4 races, good thing the endurance scene is picking up ..

I have done just about every XC race here in this state last 4 yrs and you have to be a good all around rider to place well at least in expert. I guess what i am trying to say is that we have pretty good variety here, if it was up to me mountain bike races would be in the mountains ..
 

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It's all good and as much as I hate to admit it, I agree with pindown that it's good that the endurance scene is picking up. Most races around here have always favored the aerobically gifted. Long fire road climbs typically put a bigger gap between the roadie and the trail rider. Then, on the descent where it's harder to pass, the slow, technically deficient roadie holds up all those with more trail decending skills. But, the gap in ability is usually much smaller on the descent side where the total time is also proportionally less. Small, flat, technically easy multiple loop courses don't do anyone favors when it comes to the bigger single loop courses over the summer either. The old NW MTB series in the '90s was the real deal.

And, I'll disagree with Andrew about the better fitness comment. Better technical riders don't need to suffer as much because they ride more efficiently. But, I will agree that it is about balance. But, no one can say that as a whole, current courses have that balance. Though adding some twisty courses like the recent BD one helps.

In the end though, we are indeed lucky to have the variation we have here and the opportunity to complain about too technical courses or dirt road races. Big thanks to the real Life folks for offering up thier property for a race.:thumbsup:
 

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Fat-tired Roadie
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Borneo said:
And, I'll disagree with Andrew about the better fitness comment. Better technical riders don't need to suffer as much because they ride more efficiently. But, I will agree that it is about balance. But, no one can say that as a whole, current courses have that balance. Though adding some twisty courses like the recent BD one helps.
Wasn't quite what I meant - the sport and expert classes are pretty competitive, especially the masters, with finishing times within seconds for the top few riders. Those guys are burying themselves from start to finish, no matter the course. The guys who can ride more efficiently than me may leave me in the dust, much as I hate to admit it, but there're plenty of guys with good enough bike handling skills to be efficient on technical courses, and I don't think that the difference in handling skills among the really fast guys is big enough that anyone can race successfully without working very, very hard. Whether it's actually decided by fitness or handling skills is arguable, I guess, but I think people are pushing both as hard as they can. People with fitness deficiencies tend to start making mistakes, so handling advantages aren't as useful by the end of a tough day.
 

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As a whole, I agree. But, what I meant is that the recent trend "seems" to highly favor the less technically adept. (Read: dumbed down courses.) Which sucks as originally posted. Remember all the complaints about the Duthie course being "too hard"? Wha? :madman:

And, I fully agree about the sport/expert levels. Especially when you get into the vet/master catagories. I was not looking forward to moving up to the 35+ group back when because those guys were "core". Having kids and a real job at the same time meant dropping out of the top twenty and "duking it out for 41st place" which puts a different spin on the event too. Either you train like crazy to stay up there or you drink more beer and just enjoy the scene. :)

I can't imagine not seeing a million different places to pass in the BD course with all those open woods either. But, that's me.

I just hope that courses are more balanced to favor the more well rounded rider, that's all.
 

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Dash Point = fun
Black Diamond = frustrating
Non technical fire road climbs and smooth descents (i.e. Leavenworth) = lung-burning, then brake-burning
Longer loop courses (i.e. Ft. Ebey and Cap Forest) = exhilarating

Challenging your ability, stamina, and focus with other like-minded individuals, then drinking a beer and enjoying the scene = worth it all!
 

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Borneo said:
I can't imagine not seeing a million different places to pass in the BD course with all those open woods either. But, that's me.
QUOTE]

about the only time you could pass is when someone pulled off to let you by. It was seriously that tight. Maybe a million places to pass when your on a trail ride but when you are anaerobic & seeing stars its not that easy. I love some sections like this on XC courses but it was a bit much. Don't get me wrong though, I'm happy to race whatever course is thrown at me. I do miss the old NW Mtn Bike days though where they had it all from rutted out old ORV trails, to Cap Forest & the long hot climbs of Cliffdell/Manashtash (my personal favorite of that era). :thumbsup:

DP
 
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