Moab’s First One Day Stage Race
Race report and images by Rob McPherson
(May 15, 2010) Moab, Utah—Chile Pepper Bike Shop in Moab says “WTF?!, lets blow this place up!” hosting the first “Suffer-n-Send it” one-day dual stage race in Moab’s history.
Spring can be a rough time for user groups in Moab. What with all the different typed off off-road adventure, white water types, foot souljahs, vertical ascenders and flying squirls everyone is vying to make an impression on, well, one another. Afterall, we all have to share the same coffee shop/interweb cafés.
Often overlooked is the local. No, they’re probably not hanging out at the Muv Luffin or shoping at Shifty Markup on a Sunday afternoon – they’re layin’ low with the coffee collie in the alley. They’re eating breakfast burritos and the place you’re afraid to go to. And most of all they’re riding harder in places not on Mel’s map, chamois-less and bad-ass.
So while Moab is known for its extremes (where the word itself was originally designated to describe “extreme activity,” leading to so many X brand names) the Local goes on unappreciated, unnoticed, quietly abiding to the insanity of the weekend warrior.
Today to locals reign. Racing is all about the fun, right? Especially a local-yokel gig. So rather than slap together some random hill-climb with a DH happy ending, it was considered to wear costume and ride on non-tech, last-year bikes. Unfortunately for purest hipsters bikes don’t last longer than a year in this harsh setting, so the coaster-brake-full-tilt-PBR-sippin’-scene doesn’t always go over so well in this rocky wasteland. Its not that Moab doesn’t have a townie-bike scene, its just that they don’t make it long enough to be considered vintage or cool, just scrapped heaps of tungsten graphite returned to some wasteland of warranty blah in the Twin Cities.
That being said, there was a skin suite (costume or not, I thought it was funny, if not ironic) and the gals put on a good show, of course. Beth Roberts had a stylish and functional black widow (poison spider) outfit flying and there was an honorable single-speeder, Pizza Fred, pushing his soulcraft up the hill. I even heard there was a coaster-brake bike entered in the downhill, though a chainless squishy rig powered by ACME Shuttle took the top podium by far.
Indeed it was a glorious day in the Mecca. A good shower the evening before washed away the green dirt and at the end of the day we drank green beer. Lynard Skynard and rank draft never tasted so good. Perhaps the words to “That Smell” were more poignant than the early-day patrons realized, but the two-wheeled-locals seized that moment and for a day took the glory.