Is it Groundhog Day? 2020 isn't over yet and it's with great trepidation that anyone would say things are looking up but... there are some things worth celebrating and, of course, not everything has been smooth. Here are some of the good and not so great happenings in the mountain bike world that occurred in August 2020.
Crankworx Makes the Best of Things
Crankworx Summer Series does racing in BC.
Crankworx Whistler couldn't take place in August as it usually does, with an international roster and thousands of fans, so the organizers came up with an alternative. The Crankworx Summer Series was an athlete-only invitational comprised entirely of athletes that live in BC. 25 riders competed in four disciplines (Downhill, Dual Slalom, Enduro, and Air DH) at three different locations across the province in a made-for-TV format with no spectators.
There were live broadcasts, event highlights, weekly recaps, course previews, bike checks, tech roundups, and more... It was also pretty cool seeing some venues we haven't seen used in quite some time such as the legendary Mount 7 Psychosis course. The event was a success and Crankworx just announced they'll be running at similar format
in Innsbruck at the beginning of October.
New Bike and XC Tech
Racing means testing... and then there's a Field Test.
Companies typically use their top athletes to test new products and international races are where those products are typically seen for the first time. With no racing and companies postponing launching new products, spotting and speculating on new gear (one of our favorite things) has been a challenge.
With racing starting back in various locales including the Crankworx Summer Series, various National events, and the EWS at Zermatt, the tech
we've been craving is finally starting to reappear. Additionally, while I can't say anyone was craving seeing a solid week of "Lycra Levy", we got the down-low on the latest downcountry and cross country bikes with the XC field test
Freerider Hannah Bergemann
Bergemann joins the RedBull crew.
is a freeride sender based in Bellingham and a legend in the making. Her riding speaks for itself, but her humble attitude and stoked nature go far beyond her big sends on the bike.
In a time where so much is up in the air, it was great to see Jill Kintner and Michelle Parker surprise Hannah Bergemann with her Red Bull helmet in front of the Transition office, where she works on the marketing team. We can't wait to see what Bergemann and Red Bull accomplish together.
Pierron, ALN suffer hard crashes.
had a serious crash during his French Nationals finals run on a jump in the top fast section of the course which could see him miss the rest of the season. Pierron suffered a broken collarbone, dislocated finger, and L2 and L3 transverse apophysis.Andreane Lanthier Nadeau
had a mishap in Zermatt with a crash on the Shakedown day ahead of the EWS. The Shakedown takes place on a trail that's not part of the race route and allows riders to get a taste for the terrain of the venue without gaining the advantage of riding the stages before practice. Andreane was lucky to walk away with just stitches in her hip and elbow after she was bucked at high speed onto some sharp, rocky terrain, but she was unable to race due to the extent of her injury.
Santa Cruz / CA Wildfires
Homes are lost and many are displaced during horrific fires.
It would be amiss not to mention those in the Santa Cruz area, and elsewhere, who have been impacted by the recent forest fires. While the situation is by no means isolated to Santa Cruz, that area, home to many in the mountain bike industry, has been ravaged in the last couple weeks by a number of fires resulting from a freak lightning storm. Nearly 800 homes and structures, just in the Santa Cruz area, have burned.
Among those who have lost everything are a number of mountain bikers and people in the bike industry. Santa Cruz Bicycles employees
have been hit especially hard with dozens displaced and several losing their homes.
With Cal Fire resources stretched thin, many locals (including some mountain bikers) defied evacuation orders and fought the fires themselves
, saving a number of homes. Santa Cruz Bicycles have set up a fund to help their employees and there are a number of other resources in place where people can contribute to help locals if they want.