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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i just got a giant faith 2 for Christmas and i really want to start downhill racing this summer. I think i am ok at DH but i am not sure how competitions work. any advice about the regulations and requirements and the whole times trial thing would be great


PS: anyone who just wants to post and say "you go down a hill really fast, thats all you need to know" don't even bother because i don't care about you input.


alex
 

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notabouttoseeyourlight
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flip the links on your faith... practice the course... pay your money... line up at the top... go when they tell you and don't stop pedaling until you cross the finish line!
 

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Equal opportunity meanie
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Usually a few practice runs with a single closed course race run. Classes with NORBA are beginner, sport, expert, semipro and pro with divisions for men/women and for age groups within beginner through expert.
 

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You go down a hill really fast, thats all you need to know. I really don't think you need any more info than that.......

I did beginner class for my first race, and I had already been riding for about 4 and a half years. I got 3rd. I've raced sport class for every race since then. This next year it is my goal to move to expert. I agree that there's nothing wrong with racing beginner class at first. Just know when to move up. After you're won 7 beginner races, maybe you should go to sport.

Don't underestimate it. Yea, you point your bike downhill and go full out for 5 minutes, but it is the most tiring riding I've ever done. I always think I'm fast, but when I race I go so much faster than I did in practice. I'm always about to pass out at the end of the race. I almost did after that long flat stretch at Fontana.

It's not easy, but it's not a bad thing to ease into it.
 

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I bike long tyme.
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One thing to consider too is often "beginner" and "sport" classes will run different lines or less technical courses than the "expert" and "pro" classes. So it can pay to ask during registration and/or walk the course before you sign up if they're running different courses. If you're not real confident in your riding skills yet or are severely intimidated by what you see on the big boys' race course and the program offers different courses per class designation, sign up for class that allows you to grow into your skillset by allowing you to attack less technical courses at race speed. You'll likely have more fun and stay safer allowing you to race another day. Its great to compete in any class and I think a lot of people race against themselves as much as they race against others. Personal accomplishment can be as rewarding. "Damn, I thought I was gonna run a 4:32 and I smoked a 4:01!!" That's what its all about. Have fun!!
 

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ride, ride, ride

The only way to get fast is to ride your bike when ever you can. When it comes down to the race it is very important to know your lines as well as what gear you can push in that section of the trail. Do as many races as you can to build up your race experience. Lots of guys can ride fast but it is a whole new ball game when your racing. It is imortant to stay fliud and relaxed. When I am racing I my main goal is to stay on the bike and not blow any turn or get of course. This will kill your time. You need to be pushing yourself in your race run, so that is were it gets tricky. Learn to ride at line of no control. No guts no glory. Get a stop watch and start timing all your runs all the time. Compare that time with a buddy who is as fast or faster that you. This will push you and you will get faster and faster:thumbsup:

Good luck my friend
 

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Thats good advice guys, cheers. I'm considering racing for the first time later this year. Going to go to a few meets and see how it boils down, before throwing myself in to it big style. Seems to me the natrual progression if you like hammering down fast.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
thanks for all of the advice. Now i dont know where to go to start racing. i live in central PA and there really isnt anyplace around here for me to compete. i have never been to a freeride park either. where should i go to get started


alex
 

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Pedal, Pedal Pedal

One thing to keep in mind is to sprint/pedal across all those open areas of the course. This is hard to do because you are so focused on the course and staying in your line you forget to pedal. This will help a lot with your time.
 

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snowforner15 said:
not to take over the thread for myself but.. are beginner races pretty pitiful? ive been trail riding for awhile, just havnt raced. would you suggest sport?
If your doing DH, I would do the beginners class for the 1st few races, and see how your time compares with the other classes, and move from there. Once you reach the qouta for wins, then move up. Or if your times are as good as top half of the sports class after the 1st three or so races, bump up. Don't jump the gun too fast though. Even though it's just for fun, coming in at the bottom of the heap, time and time again, is discouraging. Don't let your ego ruin what could be a fun season, hopefully on the podium.

As far as training is concerned the thing to do is get out and ride. If the weather sucks, find an indoor pool, and do laps, using several types of strokes (not that type of stroking).Spin classes are good, and also doing intervals on a stationary bike. Weight training is also good.

If your clueless on weight training, hire a personal trainer. Don't rely on some gym rat. Just because the guy's huge, doesn't mean he knows what best for you, and could give you advice that'll do more harm than good.

Can't afford a personal trainer, stick to machine weights (less chance you'll hurt your back, knees, or rotator cuff) do @ 12-15 reps for each muscle group (chest, back, shoulders, bicepts, tricepts, quads, and hamstrings). Forget what you've learned about doing sets, and do circuits. 10 to 15 seconds between each machine (about the same time it takes to move from on machine to another). at the end of each circuit rest for about 60 seconds, before starting the next circuit. 2 to 3 circuits per work out, 2-4 times per week should be enough. If you can't make it to the gym at least twice a week, don't even bother with the weights, you'll only be wasting your time.

Supplementing the weight training with yoga, especially if ya don't swim, would be good also. It'll help build core strength (which you won't achieve with the machine weights), and flexability, and a good place to meet hot babes.

So your annual should look something like this......
Race season ends....

Cross train to prevent burn out. Lock the bike up, sell it and start saving for a new one, whatever... no bikes, to include stationary for at least 1-2 months.Basketball, swim, hike, shoveling (for you renegade [email protected]#rds) any thing to keep ya off the couch,and that is enjoyable 3-6 times per week. Learn how to stretch, especially your hip flexors (illiophoas), lats, chest, quads, and calves. Do it religously, twice per day, after a hot shower (morning), and after working out.

Ride 3-6 times per week. Concentrate on technical riding. Weather sucks, swim indoors, or stationary bike, for 45 minutes to one hour. Yes that's plenty, your not racing XC, you don't wanna be a stick figure. Any thing over 45-60 minutes and you deplete your glycogen, and began burning muscle, unless your taking in Gu's or some other type of energy supplement (cytomax, Poweraide, etc.).
Began your weight training 2-4 times per week. If your over 35, you lift 2-4 times per week all year. You begin to lose strength when you become an old fart, takes more maintanence to keep up with the young punks. If your younger only during the off season, after you've done 1-2 months of cross training, and a month out from the racing season. Yes, you can ride/swim and lift weights on the same day. If you do it during the same work out, do the weight training first. Keep stretching (every day, all year, except race day), do yoga. DON"T do sit-ups! Its the worst thing any cyclist can do, unless, under the supervision of a coach, or personal trainer. Tightens the hip flexors, and inhibits the low back muscles, which causes low back pain when ridding for long periods of time.

1-2 months out from racing season....
technical ridding 1-2 times per week (don't risk injuring your self... now is not the time to be recovering from injury).
Speed riding: find a QUITE (you don't want to run over other trail users...at least not most of them) super fast piece of fire road or double track. Some thing just a bit longer than your average race coarse length of time wise. 15 minute race runs,,, find a 20 minute speed run. Use a computer, and try to stick to the same runs. concentrate on increasing your time each week. Do 2-3 or more runs 3-4 days per week. Days when cant do speed runs, do intervals on a stationary bike or trainer, or swim.

Racing season Same as 2 months out, except rest for 1-2 days before a race weekend. Tune your bike no less than one week before a race (don't want to be breaking things in during a race), with the exception of drive train maintenance of coarse.

Race weekend: walk coarse, watch other riders for good lines through turns and technical stuff. Pre-ride the coarse 1-3 times the day before if possable. If not then REST. Pre ride at least once more race day. Yes, lines can change with every rider that goes down, or in some cases up. Rocks move, mud holes deepen, dry out, get thicker, ruts develope, berms get washed out or rutted, new faster lines appear like magic, out of thin air. Stretch after the race, and not morning before (slows down muscle activation).

Day after race... Do a fun ride just to relax, and prevent/ help with muscle soreness. Never trail more than six days straight. And keep it fun.

Hope this helped. PM me if there are any additional questions. Good luck, PA is a good place to race, lots of races there, lots of wet slippery rocks and roots also. Did 7-springs Nationals a few years, back..tough race.
Tim Fontenot

Certified personal trainer, NASM
Performance enhancement specialist, NASM
Corrective exercise specialist, NASM

:thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
adamantane said:
practice crashing
lol, i don't really crash. the closest thing i have ever come to crashing while in the mountain was on my hardtail (before i got my fs) and i ran right into a big a$$ rock and hit my nit pretty hard. i almost threw up
 

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That's good, I don't really crash either. But I was practicing at Snowmass and at the section when you come almost straight downhill before the courses split off (one for beginner/sport, the other for expert/semi-pro/pro), and I hat going at least 35, no hands on the brakes, when a beginner kid, probably around 15 years old, cut in front of me at a lot lower speed. I'm not sure if I hit the brakes or just swerved, but I hit the ground going pretty f-ing fast. I'm surprised I didn't break anything, and it knocked the wind out of me. I know it was during practice, but the point is I rarely crash when I'm riding normally. I'll crash 15 times in a race weekend. Racing is not a leisurly ride. You think you go fast when you're riding normally, wait until you're being timed.
 

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moaaar shimz
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Tim F. said:
If your doing DH, I would do the beginners class for the 1st few races, and see how your time compares with the other classes, and move from there. Once you reach the qouta for wins, then move up. Or if your times are as good as top half of the sports class after the 1st three or so races, bump up. Don't jump the gun too fast though. Even though it's just for fun, coming in at the bottom of the heap, time and time again, is discouraging. Don't let your ego ruin what could be a fun season, hopefully on the podium.

As far as training is concerned the thing to do is get out and ride. If the weather sucks, find an indoor pool, and do laps, using several types of strokes (not that type of stroking).Spin classes are good, and also doing intervals on a stationary bike. Weight training is also good.

If your clueless on weight training, hire a personal trainer. Don't rely on some gym rat. Just because the guy's huge, doesn't mean he knows what best for you, and could give you advice that'll do more harm than good.

Can't afford a personal trainer, stick to machine weights (less chance you'll hurt your back, knees, or rotator cuff) do @ 12-15 reps for each muscle group (chest, back, shoulders, bicepts, tricepts, quads, and hamstrings). Forget what you've learned about doing sets, and do circuits. 10 to 15 seconds between each machine (about the same time it takes to move from on machine to another). at the end of each circuit rest for about 60 seconds, before starting the next circuit. 2 to 3 circuits per work out, 2-4 times per week should be enough. If you can't make it to the gym at least twice a week, don't even bother with the weights, you'll only be wasting your time.

Supplementing the weight training with yoga, especially if ya don't swim, would be good also. It'll help build core strength (which you won't achieve with the machine weights), and flexability, and a good place to meet hot babes.

So your annual should look something like this......
Race season ends....

Cross train to prevent burn out. Lock the bike up, sell it and start saving for a new one, whatever... no bikes, to include stationary for at least 1-2 months.Basketball, swim, hike, shoveling (for you renegade [email protected]#rds) any thing to keep ya off the couch,and that is enjoyable 3-6 times per week. Learn how to stretch, especially your hip flexors (illiophoas), lats, chest, quads, and calves. Do it religously, twice per day, after a hot shower (morning), and after working out.

Ride 3-6 times per week. Concentrate on technical riding. Weather sucks, swim indoors, or stationary bike, for 45 minutes to one hour. Yes that's plenty, your not racing XC, you don't wanna be a stick figure. Any thing over 45-60 minutes and you deplete your glycogen, and began burning muscle, unless your taking in Gu's or some other type of energy supplement (cytomax, Poweraide, etc.).
Began your weight training 2-4 times per week. If your over 35, you lift 2-4 times per week all year. You begin to lose strength when you become an old fart, takes more maintanence to keep up with the young punks. If your younger only during the off season, after you've done 1-2 months of cross training, and a month out from the racing season. Yes, you can ride/swim and lift weights on the same day. If you do it during the same work out, do the weight training first. Keep stretching (every day, all year, except race day), do yoga. DON"T do sit-ups! Its the worst thing any cyclist can do, unless, under the supervision of a coach, or personal trainer. Tightens the hip flexors, and inhibits the low back muscles, which causes low back pain when ridding for long periods of time.

1-2 months out from racing season....
technical ridding 1-2 times per week (don't risk injuring your self... now is not the time to be recovering from injury).
Speed riding: find a QUITE (you don't want to run over other trail users...at least not most of them) super fast piece of fire road or double track. Some thing just a bit longer than your average race coarse length of time wise. 15 minute race runs,,, find a 20 minute speed run. Use a computer, and try to stick to the same runs. concentrate on increasing your time each week. Do 2-3 or more runs 3-4 days per week. Days when cant do speed runs, do intervals on a stationary bike or trainer, or swim.

Racing season Same as 2 months out, except rest for 1-2 days before a race weekend. Tune your bike no less than one week before a race (don't want to be breaking things in during a race), with the exception of drive train maintenance of coarse.

Race weekend: walk coarse, watch other riders for good lines through turns and technical stuff. Pre-ride the coarse 1-3 times the day before if possable. If not then REST. Pre ride at least once more race day. Yes, lines can change with every rider that goes down, or in some cases up. Rocks move, mud holes deepen, dry out, get thicker, ruts develope, berms get washed out or rutted, new faster lines appear like magic, out of thin air. Stretch after the race, and not morning before (slows down muscle activation).

Day after race... Do a fun ride just to relax, and prevent/ help with muscle soreness. Never trail more than six days straight. And keep it fun.

Hope this helped. PM me if there are any additional questions. Good luck, PA is a good place to race, lots of races there, lots of wet slippery rocks and roots also. Did 7-springs Nationals a few years, back..tough race.
Tim Fontenot

Certified personal trainer, NASM
Performance enhancement specialist, NASM
Corrective exercise specialist, NASM

:thumbsup:
DAAAAAAAAAMMMMNNNNN that should be a sticky
 
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