This past weekend I had the opportunity to compete against some of the legends in the sport of mountain biking. I didn’t expect too much when heading down to Farmington, NM for the 2008 Road Apple Rally, but when I rolled up to the line there were two very familiar faces next to me. Ned Overand and Travis Brown, both residing in Durango, CO, decided to show up to the race. No longer was the race a “training race”. It was now an epic moment where I had the opportunity to race against some of best known racers in the country!
From left to right: Travis Brown(2 time Olympian), Jittery Joe’s Pro Roadie Matt Shriver, Ned Overand, Myself
A year ago I would have never dreamed of lining up and competing against guys like this. A lot of training under Doug Bush, and moving part time to Durango, CO, has made some surreal things happen including a Pro license and now competing with the best of the best. Another example; this past weekend after the epic Saturday race with legend Ned Overand, I went out for a nice long 4.5 hour ride. About 30 minutes along I ran into one of the top Pro’s in the Nation, Kenda/Titus racer Andy Schultz (had two top 5 finishes in National races this summer, also brother to Gary Fisher/Subaru racer, Sam Schultz). I was lucky enough to have met him a few weeks ago, so we rode together and talked about racing, training, local Olympian Todd Wells, other local athletes such as the two top collegiate mtn bike racers in the nation and now residing in Durango, CO also, etc.! It amazes me how packed Durango is with amazing top caliber athletes! You never know who you will run into.
Bring it on Ned! (And that he did! He broke away with three others about 10 minutes in! That much more motivation to get better!)
So I will leave you by saying this. One year ago I was living in Fort Myers, Fl, with one 10 mile mountain bike trail and high expectations. Now I am living and competing with some of the top Pro’s and legends of the sport and have hundreds of miles of mountain bike trails. Talk about getting better, show up to the local short track once a week and compete against the top Pro’s in the nation! That will make you better if it doesn’t destroy you in the process! On top of that, I get to choose from many different trails to ride every day. If you ever get the chance, drop by Durango, CO for some of the best riding in the nation along with the possibility of meeting the legends of the sport! All I can say is the possibilities to improve in an atmosphere like this are endless! High altitude, endless trails, top competition, and a great coach to guide me along the way! Bring it on! I can’t wait to see what I can do in the 2009 season! Bring it on!