The Humboldt State University (HSU) mountain bike race, started out Saturday morning with the threat of rain in the air. The HSU race consisted of collegiate racers coming from all over California and Nevada to race cross-country, super D, short track and downhill disciplines. I followed the racers throughout the weekend to capture the collegiate mountain bike racing experience.Cross-CountryRegistration took place in Jolly Giant parking lot at the north end of HSU campus.Josh Chapman and Clayton Kelley from HSU registered racers for the cross-country.Adrian Reyes, racing for HSU, after registering for the cross-country.Once it was time to race, all of the participants pedaled into the forest to meet at the starting line.
Collegiate cycling is divided into skill-based categories, A, B, and C for both men and women. The A category consists of the fastest, most talented riders, who do three laps around the forest, while the B category does two laps, and the C category does one lap. Here, one of the men's B riders, Josh Chapman, accelerates down a hill not far from the beginning of the cross-country race.
The cross-country course is mapped out so that riders climb steep fire roads and descend twisty singletrack. Here, Diana Pi and Rachel Anders from Stanford climb up a fire road on their way to first and second place finishes in the women's A category.Men's A rider, Bryce Lewis, cruises to the end of his second lap on his way to a first place finish. Men's A rider, Jacob Crabill, took second place.Super D
The Super D started later in the day at the top of the Arcata Community forest and wound its way down muddy singletrack to a fire road finish.After a few practice runs, the racers lined up at the start and waited for their turn to go.Tyler Green, from HSU, was the first rider to tackle the course, and ended up with a first-place finish in the A category and the fastest time on the day.Nate Ross, from HSU, takes a corner at speed during the super D.Sara Schneider, riding for HSU, makes her way down the top of the trail known as Rotorua.The officials wait at the finish line for racers to come down the course.After the last rider makes it down the course, Saturday's racing drew to a close and the racers went to prepare for day two.Day TwoShort Track
Day two started off rainy and cold. Most racers decided to stay in bed, with only six people racing the short track.Jacob Crabill, with his Specialized Epic, was one of the few racers to show up Sunday morning.
After waiting a while for racers to show up, I decided to go home and back to bed to get ready for the downhill race Sunday afternoon.Downhill
The downhill race started at 2:00pm on Sunday and racers started practicing the muddy course a couple hours before that.After registration closed and practice was over, the racers made their way down to the starting line.A racer waits for the start of the downhill race.Lucas Chambliss, from University of California, Santa Cruz, takes the first run down the hill.Larry Sussman, from University of Nevada, Reno, charges a jump on his race run.Local rider, Nikko Mazzotti, charges down Sam's Trail at the top of the course.An unknown University of Nevada, Reno, rider races through the course.The downhill came to a close and all of the racers hit the road for a long drive home after a successful, rainy, weekend of racing.For more photos, visit ryanwiegman.wordpress.com and follow @digitallcowboy on Instagram.