Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Giro D'Ville...Fooflandia

Giro D'Ville
There were 40 full pullers and some day poachers

There are three grand tours that matter for a certain crew of mountain bike glitterati...Giro D'Ville, Tour de Burg and the Fall Tour.  These are off the grid events put on by folks that think fun involves a little pain, a little pleasure, but it must be done in the mountains with friends.  Yes, they are races and yes, they are hard. You won't find them on BikeReg.com. One of the main difference lies in the format of these stage races.  Its group living eating breakfast and dinner all together at camp and lots of hang out time on camp chairs and yoga mats.  There is beer drinking. People are not staring at their iphones...They are talking to each other, sitting close, laughing.
There is some hang out time that the pros might find tough

The big difference is the way the racing happens.  All stages start off with Pleasure Pace (PP) to the first timed section.  These PP transfers sound like an Enduro race, but no Enduro race transfer is this much fun and social.  Plus, its a no drop PP, meaning even the fastest guys wait for the slowest.  The PP sections can be long or short.  The timed sections can be long say 1:30 or short say 20 minutes.  The timed sections are racing sections. There are multiple racing sections. The fastest guys carry the watches and time everyone. Often  the Super D sections are timed by a volunteer.  And the riding is so fine and puts us out in the mountains all day and end at a swimming hole.
Captain Hoy gives us directions...Listen up!

I hadn't been to the Giro D'Ville in years because it conflicts with the Transylvania Epic in Pennsylvania.  Since, I'm skipping TSE this year, It was my pleasure to see good friends and catch up.  And ride!
Super Blue skies while riding in the Virginia mountains with friends makes me very happy

One of the highlights is eeing the new blood mix with old blood.  A new men's leader emerged in the uber fit and enduro ready, Collin Vento.  Marty, also the race director, got second.  Now wearing baggies and sneakers, Kyle Lawrence in third.  Riding for Freedom and Family, extreme Joel Maynard got fourth and C-bass Quinn rode strong into fifth and selflessly stirred the Port a John for us all. O-Dog won the sprints and the lumberjack contest.  Last year's winner, Alex Kurland, was this year's climber's jersey. And of course, Dan "ice cream" Oates is DFL.
DanFL again!

Collin dominated all with a smile

Alex in the climber's jersey
Quinn Bros. Racing kept Oliver in the blue sprinter's jersey

I am the Maghlia Rosa for the women, miraculously.  I wanted to keep the leader's jersey because I like the color pink but it always hung pretty precariously on my shoulders. The 19 year old daughter of one of my best buds showed her mountain bike pedigree with some steamrolling downhill sections and some stubborn pedaling.  Hopefully, she'll smartly channel that hereditary rage into some great fast racing in her future and making lots of friends. Whitney March was in third showing that she is tough as nails after coming back from giving most of her liver to her mother for a transplant!  And our little friend who moved to Massachusetts, Jennifer Wolfson,  rounded out the podium for the ladies.
There is only one jersey, it does not get washed and was only worn by me

Lindsey Carpenter is growing up fast
Wolfie at Spy Rock
My favorite stage was Whetstone Ridge, right off the Blue Ridge Parkway.  It is 11 miles of some of the best.  Classic Virginia Backcountry Ridge riding...and one of the best downhill rewards at the end!
Love, Love this trail!

Thanks go out to the CAMBA crew and the heros that make the Giro happen.