2013 NEVADA STATE DH AND SUPER D RACE
Bootleg Canyon, home of the trails built and established by the late Brent Thompson, has been a venue of many of the South West’s toughest races and serves up by far the most technical and demanding cycling in Vegas. Sitting deep in the desert just west of the famous Hoover Dam, Bootleg Canyon mtb bike trails are comprised of rock, rock and more rock... with the occasional patch of dirt. Gnarly exposures litter the sides of every trail here and crashing here only guarantees you’re going to be in for a rough landing and probably a good bruise. If you have never been to Bootleg, names like PoopChute, Armageddon, Reaper, Kevorkian and Snake Back should be a clue as to what to expect. Bootleg Canyon is not for the faint of heart.
This year Downhill Mike hosted the 2013 Nevada State DH and Super D Championship races at Bootleg Canyon. With several sponsors who contributed to this race, swag was shoulder deep and some awesome prizes were had by many. Mike even personally handed out custom pint glasses provided by KHS racing to each winner. This was also the 1st Downhill Qualifier for the Nationals in 2013, part of USA Cycling State Championship.
Saturday opened racing with the Super D event that rallied racers down both Boy Scout and Girl Scout trails in an average 9-10 min runs. While not a super endurance race of 30 minutes, the trails at Bootleg make up for it by being very tough. Don’t let the kiddie names fool you. These trails squeeze out every ounce of skill from you to place yourself on top of the podium!
Merrick Golz from Utah had a SMASHING time of 8:54 in Cat 2 19-29 men. Enough to have won the Pro Class by over six seconds. Speaking of the Pro’s, the winning time was held by Kevin Aiello with a time of 9:01who beat out his KHS Factory Racing teammate Logan Binggeli by almost eleven seconds. Another highlight finish was held by Bootleg local William Benda that won his 40+ Cat 2 by over a whole minute!
Downhill racing at Bootleg Canyon is not like racing anywhere else in the USA. No other place anywhere is there more gnar flowing over every inch of the course. PERIOD! This place exhumes every ounce from you just in order to finish standing up. ThePro standings were topped off with both Jacquieline Harmony in Pro Women and Mikey Sylvestri in Pro men taking top honors.
Jackie Harmony’s time of 4:01 held a commanding lead over Ana Rodriquez by 34 seconds. Mikey was pinned but Kevin Aiello, the winner of Pro Super D, was aiming to make it a double podium for the weekend. Cody Kelley proved why he is on the Specialized USA Gravity team with a solid 3rd place. Art Babcock who was plagued with a flat in Super D made up for it in Pro Dh with a great run to 4th place. Adam Digby finished up the top five.
One of the more exciting round ups to the races held at Bootleg Canyon are the Chainless races. Racers forced to use pure skill to pump and rail berms as fast as they can and keep their momentum. Remember no chains on the bike to help them get back to speed. So every moment you scrub speed is an eternity to gain it back. This event held a significant crowd at the bottom of the course where the final jump and hard left hander was the place where each racers efforts was finally decided in an exciting turn of events as Gnar Gnar Tours weekend DJ Bob Ehlert announced each finisher. The Hot Seat was held with an exciting run by Gravity Pirate Dave Seaquist as racers kept knocking on his time of 3:50.71 which ultimately landed him in 7th place. The fastest racers, seeded near the end, finally came charging in breaking the times one by one. Third place Pro DH podium holder Cody Kelley SMASHED the field in 3:34.83, just 23 seconds slower than the CHAINED poduim winner. Graeme Pitts used his training from Gene Hamiltons Better Ride Camps to pump his way into 2nd place. Mark Clemens rounded out the top three with a narrowing finish just 65 HUNDREDTHS of a second behind Graeme. In Open Women Jacqueline Harmony obliterated her competition by well over one and a half minutes!
Huge thanks to all of the sponsors, and especially Bob Ehlert of Gnar Gnar tours for his awesome announcing during the weekend. However none of this would be possible without the efforts of Downhill Mike and his crew. Year after year they have put on stellar events at Bootleg and we look forward to many many more.
If you'd like to learn more about mtb bike trials and riding at Bootleg Canyon, stay tuned to MtbParks.com!