Video & Race Report: A Steep, Raw and Rowdy Finale to the ESC Downhill Series - Plattekill, NY

Oct 22, 2019 at 7:14
by Eastern States Cup  
Views: 1,488    Faves: 2    Comments: 0

The eighth and final round of the Maxxis Eastern States Cup Intense Downhill Series brings us back to the Northeast's ultimate proving grounds, Plattekill Mountain. The ESC crew have brought back portions of the 2014 ProGRT course, including the infamous Dangerous Grounds chute. The track is quintessentially Platty, featuring some of the steepest, most raw and rowdy terrain the mountain has to offer. With several racers from each class in the hunt for the series overall, double points in this race mean you have to leave everything you've got on the track if you want to take home a championship jersey. After crowning two Vermonters in the Pro Enduro classes at Thunder Mountain Finals, two more would make it a clean sweep for the Green Mountain State in 2019. Keep scrolling for all the action from the final race of the year!

Riot Racing's Mark Marrongelli enjoying the sunshine and some air time on practice day, he would go on to take second place for the Expert 30-39 men.

Quebec speed dealer Tristan Lemire wasn't distracted by the peak foliage, he smoked the Junior Expert boys with a 2:02.09, the sixth fastest time of the day.

When the track wasn't careened straight down the mountain, the corners offered multiple line choices. In search of more exit speed, Wülfpak Racing's Dustin Mason gives the outside leaf blower line a try during practice.

Ale Caerols joined us all the way from Chile and gave the Pro men's class a run for their money, finishing in fifth place, just 2.83 seconds off the win.

They don't call him Fast Freddy for nothing, Fred Bassett bested the rest of the Masters men by over 13 seconds and took fourth in the series despite only entering four races this season.

Wouldn't be a DH race at Platty without a proper parking lot party.

After a sunny practice day, rain drops started to fall right before the first racer was about to leave the start gate Sunday afternoon.

Although the rain made things interesting in terms of vision, the ground drains well here and some racers said parts of the track were actually more grippy with a little moisture mixed in.

Logan Tiger has been battling it out with Cristian Suarez and Jonah Freedman in the U15 class all year but he had the edge when it counted, taking the win by nearly five seconds which earned him the overall title.

Aaron Perry landed on the Amateur 30-44 podium at every Maxxis ESC Intense DH Series race of 2019, this weekend he played it conservative with a clean run which landed him sixth on the day, clinching the championship jersey.

Abby Ronca has been putting on a clinic in the Amateur women's class all season, this weekend she would take her fifth win of 2019 and secure the overall by 78 points.

Timothy Zima drops into one of the many shale littered chutes on his way to winning the Amateur 16-29 men's class race and series.

IdeRide and Liv Cycling racer Riley Miller takes on the steepest terrain Platty has to offer with ease, she would finish fourth for the Pro Women on her trail bike.

Mark Schnepel dodging rain drops as the shale shifts below him, fifth place in the race and overall runner up in the Expert 40+ class.

Our fastest racers clocked through the Fly Racing Speed Zone, included fastest amateurs Flavio Augusto and Katlin Parenteau.

Pro Builds Racing's Paulo Martins edged out the rest of the Expert 40+ class by 1.21 seconds, earning his fifth win of the season and his second consecutive series championship.

Defiant Racing's Steve Estabrook held the Pro men's points lead after Mountain Creek, but he had plenty of company competing for the white jersey. He was able to secure the series victory by just 18 points with a conservative run which landed him in sixth place Sunday afternoon.

Steve Day mashes the pedals on the lengthy traverse just before the final steep chute. He was able to get it done at his home mountain, besting the Expert 30-39 class by 6.51 seconds to take both the race and overall wins.

Kristin Lenart had the series lead heading into the final race of the year, she was able to put down a solid run on Sunday to finish third this weekend and runner-up in the overall.

Ella McAndrew backed up her two Enduro podium results with a second place on the big bike this weekend, 4.42 seconds off the Pro women's win.

Although Mazie Hayden was sitting second in the overall before this race the double points final rewards those who hang it all out. She was able to put down a 2:31, taking the race as well as the series after winning every Maxxis ESC DH she finished in 2019. "I got to Plattekill a little bit late and only had one training run prior to seeding, so I definitely was not on fire during that run. Other than that, my weekend went very smoothly with no big falls or mechanicals. I loved the course, it was exactly what I had hoped for the final race. Winning the ESC overall was one of my big goals for the season, so I'm stoked on getting that as well! As far as next season goes, I think it will look fairly similar to this one, with a hopefully a few more World Cups and Crankworx."

Pro Women: 4th - Riley Miller, 2nd - Ella McAndrew, 1st - Mazie Hayden, 3rd - Kristin Lenart, 5th - Ivanna Estrada

Danny's Cycles' Mauricio Estrada has been a consistent podium finisher all year, he was able to ride his way into third place Sunday on a Pro men's podium separated by less than three seconds.

Canadian James Frost put down a heater of a race run which slotted him into second place, earning his best Maxxis ESC result to date, just .79 seconds off the win.

Although you won't see Alex McAndrew on the DH bike quite as often these days, he's still one to watch out for when he decides to get back between the tape. He threw the extended visor on and laid down the fastest time of the day with a 1:59.11 at his first Maxxis ESC DH race of the year. "I think I've always had more fun on the more raw and natural race tracks...Plattekill has never been short on raw and natural. It was awesome to make it back to the ESC DH scene for the close of the season; it is such a good crew and so much fun. I really missed racing DH this summer. The shorter track was steep and tight leaving little room for error! With the rain for finals, I tried to ease up on the pace a bit and focused on nailing the sprint. Next year I'll be focusing on the EWS circuit a bit more heavily, but I'll certainly plan on a couple of DH races, there's nothing like charging on the big bike!"

Pro Men: 4th - Isaac Allaire, 2nd - James Frost, 1st - Alex McAndrew, 3rd - Mauricio Estrada, 5th - Ale Caerols

You'd be smiling like that too if you'd just won a rain race at Plattekill.

Everyone's favorite part of the final awards ceremony of the season, the great banner giveaway.

Pro Women Series Overall: 2nd - Kristin Lenart, 1st - Mazie Hayden, 3rd - Ivanna Estrada

Pro Men Series Overall: 4th - James Frost, 2nd - Mauricio Estrada, 1st - Steve Estabrook, 3rd - Isaac Allaire, 5th - Jordan Daigle

Here are your 2019 Maxxis Eastern States Cup Intense Downhill Series champions.

Iron Man and Woman Award winners who showed up to every downhill race on the schedule this season.

After six months of racing all around the East Coast, the sun sets on another Maxxis ESC season. Each year they seem to go by even faster, but rest assured, George and the crew are already hard at work to make next year even better. Have a great offseason everyone, we'll see you in 2020!

Words and photos: Andrew Santoro
Video: Jason Scheiding

Full Race Results
Overall Series Results


  • 14 2
 Nothing like Splatty!!! Best mountain hands down! No buff all rough real riders mountain! I remember good ol' days when the lift line was all the way to the patio... that was just a normal weekend hot laping barely got you 10 runs... its ashame people dont want to ride there these days... all this "Janky talk" being thrown around..... you think you know "Janky" ..... Platty is OG Janky
  • 8 0
 People would rather do "lazy" paved dirt jump trails and no natural features. if only Platty would capitalize on their uniqueness and develop it as such - two lifts - two mountains, different terrain on both sides. Clean up a bit of the trails, clear vegetation, better signage/maps - the place is a DH Mecca for those who truly like to challenge themselves and their bikes.
  • 7 0
 Realest Mountain in the East, proper way to end the series.
  • 10 0
 Platty is truly the last DH venue around. Nothing else like it.
  • 7 2
 I tried a few bike parks in eastern usa and from what I've seen this is the one that should get the WC venue. It has the elevation, the steepness, the rawness.. It's great! And also a pretty area.
  • 3 10
flag geeKayy (Oct 23, 2019 at 9:13) (Below Threshold)
 Clearly you've never been to Snowshoe, WV.
  • 5 0
 I'm so sad this amazing season had to end! I can't wait to see everyone again in the spring!
  • 6 0
 next year cant come soon enough..... such a rad year with all you maniacs
  • 7 0
 chaingang = disqualified
  • 2 0
 @nikodemus: Leisure Crew Disqualified. Go to sleep boys the party is just getting started.
  • 3 0
 My favorite track of the season. Thanks to George, Chris, and the rest of the ESC crew for another awesome season. See you in the spring.
  • 2 0
 It really was an awesome track. I thought I loved the last one at Creek but once again George puts together an even better track to finish it off!!
  • 4 0
 Wet fall foliage, loose catskills shale....Plattekill separates the men from the boys
  • 4 0
 Awesome event to end the season!
  • 3 0
 Great season @Eastern-States-Cup ! Andrew great photos as always! Thanks for everything.
  • 3 0
 Platty , my favorite place to ride ! Wish it was still open for the season!
  • 4 0
 fire jumping is a plattekill tradition
  • 2 0
 OG location. Looked fun!
  • 2 1
 Is Laszlo still the owner of this mountain?
  • 3 2
 Ella McAndrew is so cute

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