Video & Race Report: Eastern States Cup Showdown - Mountain Creek, NJ

Oct 1, 2019 at 10:03
by Eastern States Cup  

Both Maxxis ESC Specialized Enduro and Intense Downhill racers came together in Vernon, New Jersey this past weekend for the final Box Components Showdown double header of the season. Northern Jersey is known for its Black Dirt Region which is ideal for growing potatoes and onions but you won't find any of that at Mountain Creek Bike Park, instead you'll put tires on dry, dusty corners and chunky rock sections which put even fresh tires to the test. This weekend Downhill racers took on a course similar to the 2015 Maxxis ESC East Coast Super Champs which featured the infamous Slayer rock garden and finished with a sprint through the water park. Although we're racing at a bike park, Enduro racers enjoyed plenty of pedaling between their five stages which were spread across the entire mountain. While we're still trying to clean the dust out of every nook and cranny, check out what went down at Mountain Creek.

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All the locals came out to cheer on racers this weekend. Don't be fooled by this puddle, the Mountain Creek trails are dry as a bone with deep dust built up in the heavily ridden corners.


Good morning, New Jersey. Box Components Showdown racers got their day started at 8:30am so they could finish all five Enduro stages and make their Downhill start times.

Enduro racers started their day on a pedal-heavy section of trail which ran along the Sojourn Double chair before dipping into the woods. Nick Girioni puts down the power for a third place result in the U21 men's class, rounding out a top three full of Rhode Islanders.

Flat Tire Defender Super Stage winners from each class, including fastest amateurs Jennifer Yanazzo and Chris Mari.

The first four stages explored the Granite Peak side of the mountain and required riders to pedal their way back up fire roads before using the lift to access the final stage.

Fox Transfer Seatpost Challenge winners who were the fastest from the end of Stage 1 up the 500' vertical pedal back to the top of Granite Peak for Stage 2.

Stage 2 brought riders from Granite Peak to South Peak via several sustained steeps linked together by a few punchy pedal sections. Jack Kisseberth surfs the moon dust toward the top of the stage on his way to fourth place, his best result since joining the ranks of the Pro Men.

Riders pulled off the fire road about two thirds of the way up for a pit stop on the short yet challenging Stage 3. Anthony Napoli airs it out in the middle of the New Jersey woods, he would finish in the fourth place for the U15 boys.

After one final pedal transfer riders would take on the chunky yet fast Stage 4 which finished at the base of the mountain. Chris Crispin floats through the rocks, he would secure second place in both races, making him our Box Components Showdown winner this weekend.

A scenic Cabriolet transfer lead riders to their fifth and final stage of the day, which would test their fitness with several flat pedal sections. Lauren Breza was able to secure fourth place for the Pro ladies, her fourth podium result of the season.

Chris Mari and Jennifer Yanazzo each took home a fresh pair of Alex Rims for being the fastest amateur racers on Stage 5.

Pittstop Velocafe rider Marilyne Proulx rounded out the Pro Women's top three, her third Maxxis ESC Specialized Enduro podium result in as many races.

Kimberley Quinlan was able to find the flow in the woods this weekend, finishing runner up for the Pro Women and maintaining her lead in the series with just one race left.

None of the Pro Women could tame the chunky Mountain Creek terrain like Sarah Howerter, winning every stage and the race with an overall time of 21:23. "I'm so stoked to take the win here, a bit out of my element in the dry dusty conditions coming from a cold and wet Vermont. I had so much fun out there smashing the many rock gardens and tried to pedal harder than I have at the other races this year. My bike took more of a beating this weekend than probably ever before, but I was thrilled to keep it rubber side down. So bummed to hear about Marine Lewis's crash. I hope she's alright and has a speedy recovery!"

Enduro Pro Women: 5th - Clair Sick, 3rd - Marilyne Proulx, 1st - Sarah Howerter, 2nd - Kimberley Quinlan, 4th - Lauren Breza

GT Bikes rider Jason Memmelaar was able to secure third place in the Enduro and 13th in the Downhill, which placed him fourth in the Box Components Showdown. Chin on the bars through the water park!

Chris Miller is always one to watch, he would finish runner up this weekend, just 13 seconds off the win.

Seamus Powell had some struggles earlier in the season but it seems he's peaking at the right time, winning four stages this weekend to take the Pro men's win. "Mountain Creek has always been a love hate relationship for me on and off the race track. I have gotten equal amounts of injuries and mechanicals to wins here, so it's always a crap shoot on race day. I'm really happy with this win and late season form. I've been doing the math on the overall for the ESC series going into finals weekend and it's a super long shot for me to take the overall even with double points for the race. I've been in this position before but a little further up the overall than I am now. I'm confident in my riding for the first time in a long time and will give it everything I have to stand on the box this Sunday."

Enduro Pro Men: 5th - Matthew Sebas, 3rd - Jason Memmelaar, 1st - Seamus Powell, 2nd - Chris Miller


Drummer Racing's Cody Greatbatch gaps into the woods on his way to a third place finish in the Expert 30-39 men's class, his third podium result of the season.

Maxine Bergeron does her best to smooth out the Slayer rock garden, she would round out the Pro ladies podium with a fifth place.

Matt Driscoll was in the hot seat up into the final rider came across the line, he smoked the Junior Expert class by nearly eight seconds and was just .32 off the fastest time of the day.

Sean McDonnell sampling the New Jersey soil.

Cristian Suarez styles it up as he flies out of the woods toward his second U15 win of the season.

Canadian Patrick Pare-Martin was all business heading into the final sprint, he would go on to take ninth place for the Pro Men and has yet to finish outside the top ten all year.

The fastest racers from each class who were pinned through the Fly Racing Speed Zone at the bottom of the tar walkway just before the finish line.

All smiles for Steve Estabrook and the Defiant Racing crew as they secured four podium spots in the Pro men's class.

Chelsea Kimball is no stranger to flying high but it turns out she's also pretty good at flat grassy corners, third place for her in the Pro women's class this weekend.

Kristin Lenart tamed the rocky goodness of Mountain Creek to take second place in the Pro ladies field, just one second off the win. She currently leads the series overall, but with double points the title is up for grabs at the final race.

Competitive Edge and Pivot rider Mazie Hayden lets it fly into the water park on her way to take the top spot. She currently trails Kristin by 162 points heading into finals at Plattekill, where there's no doubt they'll both be going flat out in hopes of winning the overall title.

Downhill Pro Women: 5th - Maxine Bergeron, 3rd - Chelsea Kimball, 1st - Mazie Hayden, 2nd - Kristin Lenart, 4th - Ivanna Estrada

Titus Nicholson kept it low and fast into the final corner, slotting into third place and taking his first Pro men's podium result.

Mauricio Estrada put down a heater at his home mountain, finishing just .75 off the win this weekend.

Defiant Racing's Steve Estabrook pushes it to the limit on the final pedal through the water park, getting it done with a 2:43. He also secured sixth place in the Enduro earlier in the day, finishing second in the Box Showdown this weekend, as he leads both series heading into the final races. "It was such an amazing weekend with the team and great people. Practice with those guys is a blast, swapping line choices, talking crap, having fun, just enjoying each other's company. A win on top of that was just amazing. We were all so glad on our respective success on the weekend, and hoping to carry that joy and dominance into finals!"

Downhill Pro Men: 5th - Jordan Daigle, 3rd - Titus Nicholson, 1st - Steve Estabrook, 3rd - Mauricio Estrada, 4th - Isaac Allaire

Get that bike put back together because there's only one more race left in each Maxxis ESC series, endurists will be back at it next weekend at Thunder Mountain October 6th for Specialized Enduro Finals and downhillers will head to Plattekill October 20th for Intense Downhill Finals. With double points on the line it's anyone's ballgame!

Words and photos: Andrew Santoro
Video: Jason Scheiding

Full Enduro Results
Full Dowhill Results


May 5 Diamond Hill, RI
May 19 Glen Park, PA – EWS Qualifier
June 2 Thunder Mountain, MA
June 23 Blue Mountain, PA
July 7 Burke Mountain, VT PA – EWS Qualifier
July 14 Plattekill, NY
July 21 Sugarbush, VT
Aug 4 Killington, VT
Aug 18 Plattekill, NY
Sept 8 Glen Park, PA
Sept 29 Mountain Creek, NJ
Oct 6 Thunder, MA Finals PA – EWS Qualifier

June 2 Thunder Mountain, MA
June 23 Blue Mountain, PA
July 14 Plattekill, NY
July 21 Sugarbush, VT
Aug 4 Killington, VT
Aug 18 Plattekill, NY
Sept 29 Mountain Creek, NJ
Oct 20 Plattekill, NY Finals

MAXXIS ESC BOX SHOWDOWNS - DH and Enduro on the same day
June 2 Thunder Mountain, MA
June 23 Blue Mountain, PA
July 14 Plattekill, NY
July 21 Sugarbush, VT
Aug 4 Killington, VT
Aug 18 Plattekill, NY
Sept 29 Mountain Creek, NJ

May 19 Glen Park, PA
July 7 Burke Mountain, VT
Oct 6 Thunder Mountain, MA Enduro Finals

CLIF ENDURO LITE presented by Maxxis ESC
Aug 25 Burke Mountain - Beginner Enduro Racers - Families - Kids - Fun!


  • 24 0
 Rider #420 needs more kush...
  • 1 0
  • 4 0
 Probably the most fun I've had at an ESC this season! Track was awesome, weather was great and that gondola sure speeds the lines along. I can't wait to see everyone one last time at finals!!
  • 2 0
 What a gourgeous weekend that was!!! First time riding Creek, was equally scary and fun. Maybe I'll get some practice weekends in before next year's race :-)
Great choice of enduro stages, deceptively short at first glance, but the gnar more than made up for it!!!!
  • 3 0
 The dust was real. I was out there watching and shooting photos as well. First time to an ESC race. Definitely will be hitting others next year.
  • 1 0
 Met lots of new great people this weekend! Thanks to everyone who made this weekend such a blast. See you all for one last Enduro and there may be a pleasant surprise for everyone Wink
  • 2 0
 So gutted that I wasn't able to make it out to this one. Was looking forward to it all year and I ended up going to Snowshoe instead. Poor choices were made.
  • 4 0
 Perfect organisation and perfect wheather made a perfect week-end !!
  • 3 0
 always fun times at ESC races
  • 1 0
 Yet another great weekend of racing with the Clifkids!

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