This is Joshua Rogers checking in Vernon, NJ. I’m at Mountain Creek Bike Park for my first Pro GRT race.
The bike park was amazing, the course was was super fun. The course had everything from big rock sections, fast slopes, and some big jumps. Practice was Thursday through Sunday. My dad drove through the night on Thursday and we pulled into the parking lot at 1:05 am Friday morning just so I could practice. The course was super dry and fast, I was able to push some good speeds all day. My new Specialized Demo 8 gave me the confidence to push harder each run. Have to say the NEMA gear was looking good.
Saturday came along and it was still really dry and fast. My dad and I did a course walk in the morning and found a new line threw the main rock sections. It was definitely way faster than the the line I was taking at first. Practice was only two hours on Saturday and near the end it started misting with some rain.
There was a Super D race Saturday afternoon. My decided that I wouldn’t do that race so I could stay focused on DH. It was time for Pro and CAT 1 seeding runs after the Super D. The course had already changed a lot from practice and it was a challenge for the riders to adapt. They had no practice time on the wet course. As the CAT 1 riders came across the big double to the finish line the times were pretty fast. Half way through the Pro riders the fastest time was still held by a CAT1 rider. At the end of the seeding Neko had posted the fastest time.
Sunday was wet and the mist and rain was still hanging around. The first couple of practice runs were slow. The rocks on the course were very slick and it was muddy. The mud stated getting more tacky after each practice run. The key was not to hit the breaks on the rocks and let go on the wide open sections. The start of my run for the race was really good I was pushing it to my limits if not past my limits. After I got past the real hard parts of the course I came into a conner that had some slick roots in it and my front washed out and I flipped over. When I got up I realized that my breaks had flipped around and I was only able to get on partially fixed. At that point I had to go and I didn’t care and went for it. I charged hard all the way next conner. I couldn’t slow down and I jumped the berm about 12 feet into the woods. It took me forever to get out of there so I knew there was no way of winning from that point. Overall this weekend was very good I was able to push some really fast speeds. AlI can do now is put the race behind me, train harder and prepare for the next race. See you at GES #2 at Mountain Creek in two weeks.
Joshua Rogers — CAT2 18 & under — 12th Place — 3:52.36
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