Cascadia MTB Championships 2016

Oct 5, 2016 at 8:54
by Eric Ashley  
Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Luke Strobel gets an early start to a weekend of winning during the Cascadia MTB Championships (Pro Men).

Come October, Port Angeles usually receives one final deluge of mountain bikers lured to the small town by the promise of a fall shuttle fest — a crowd favorite that dishes up tons of fun while sneaking in a final hurrah before winter. Late last year, NW Cup director Scott Tucker and Cascadia Dirt Cup director Trey Wilson realized the annual fest was prime to be combined with a multi-day competition on the fast trails and hero dirt of Dry Hill.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  A cool and still morning greeted racers for the rider's meeting.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  It's dawn, now go race.

Their initial tour-de-mountain-biking plans included several different disciplines of riding, but the two wisely paired it down to the meat and potatoes of the northwest and settled on one day of enduro racing followed by a day of downhill racing. Creating an end of the year championships that would offer something to each of the series' participants and a chance to be crowned champion of the mountain for the fastest combined time over both days. Though racers could opt to race only a single day if desired.

With the format finalized, a new trail under construction, and a well-honed shuttle system in place, all that was left to do was wait for October to roll around.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Despite a second place finish during his first enduro, Bob Stenson has no intention of switching disciplines (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Jake Grob heads into the dimly lit Queen Diamond (Pro Men).

Like with all fall biking events, the weather has a major effect on the goings on. So the rain forecasted over the weekend wasn't missed when it decided to skip town. Instead, Saturday's earlier-than-usual racer's meeting was still and cool — allowing riders to focus more on the early hour than wet socks. In store for the day was plenty of climbing and four stages of classic trails and two that haven't been raced before. Stages one and two were short and fast descents down the front of the mountain, stage three headed to the backside, and stage four was a long pull from the summit to the staging area below.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Erik Nilson scored third at the end of the day for his best pro result to date.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Nikolas Clarke (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Anthonee Gibbs (Expert Men 18-29).

Enduros at Dry Hill don't skimp on the vertical, mileage, or fun and Saturday was no exception. Fast descents, steady pedaling, fresh built goodness, and some soft and duffy sections were all on tap. By the time racers reached the very long stage four, they were clearly starting to feel the effects of an intense day. Making the allure of friends, drinks, food, and podiums that much more inviting. And with the downhillers getting their Saturday practice in, post-race shuttles were an option too.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Alex Walker was on a tear all day throwing down fast laps across the board (Expert Junior 17 & Under).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Matthew McCluskey (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Jason Gainey plays with the limits on the wrong side of a long catch berm (Expert Men 40+).

Canfield Brother's Colton Wiersum took third in Junior Expert, a little over six seconds behind Luke Topol. Ahead of them was Alex Walker who avoided the pitfalls of crashes and flats to crush every stage and carry a strong lead. Leana Gerrard took an early lead for Pro Women but lost time during the final stages to end in third. Emily Sabelhaus came second behind Andi Zolton. Erik Nilson took third to claim his first Pro Men's podium. Ahead of him came Bob Stenson, who despite the good result during his first enduro has no intention of making enduros a regular thing. Luke Strobel took the day with a time of 20:17.4. Full enduro results here.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Joel Morse gathers himself after just a little too much gas over this flat corner onto Upper Pro (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Stage two's Rusty Mcleod served up plenty of fresh dirt.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Luke Strobel sends the long double on Wayne's World (Pro Men).

Sunday's forecasted rain didn't show up either and racers were quick to get their morning practice laps in. All categories raced the same course from White Knuckle to Motoguzzi to Cakewalk for a moderately technical route. Fast times were further bolstered by dirt conditions that ran the gamut from hard pack to the occasional rooty rut.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Colton Wiersum (Expert Junior 17 & Under).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Jake Grob (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Shannon Leigh having a good time along Rusty Mcleod (Sport Women).

Joshua Fultz-Veirotte took third for Junior Expert, just .06 seconds behind Colton Wiersum. Dylan Brown took the top step with a time 2:36.50. Team Juliana/MFR had a good showing by taking the entire Pro Women's podium — Kaytlin Melvin saw her first pro win ahead of teammates Karen O'Connell and Emily Sabelhaus. Andi Zolton's fourth place finish didn't earn her a podium on Sunday, but her combined times did secure the Queen of Cascadia title.

Kasper Dean took third and scored his first Pro Men's podium. Canadian rider Max Scharf put in a smoking time of 2:25.48 that put him in the hot seat right until local man of speed Luke Strobel laid down a time .37 seconds up to take the win. Strobel's back-to-back wins also gave him the King of Cascadia title. Full downhill results here. And reigning champion results here.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  George Peck kept things orderly until a crash later on during stage four knocked him back in the ranks (Expert Men 30-39).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Josh Gibb goes for a little takeoff on stage two (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Kristian Duft (Pro Men).

Fall continues to be a special time in Cascadia, just ask any of the weekend's participants for confirmation. And with the 2016 racing season heading to bed your number one goal should be to get out and ride your bike a lot before the snow flies. If you missed the Cascadia MTB Championships, rest assured that the good people of the CDC and NW Cup are busy scheming for next year.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Preston Peterson (Expert Men 40+).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Karen O'Connell rides along the only bridge on Dry Hill (Pro Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Leana Gerrard carried the lead through stages one and two but lost time on the remaining stages (Pro Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Andi Zolton (Pro Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Anthony Barlow (Expert Men 40+).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  A little sun breaking through the overcast to get riders ready for stage three.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Erik Dukes puts down the power to secure the win on home turf (Expert Men 30-39).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Luke Strobel (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Nikolas Clarke (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Back on course, Jake Grob makes a fast recovery after blowing through the first turn on stage three (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Travis Holman (Sport Men 30-39).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Josh Gibb (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  At the end of this corner was a pretty substantial tree, brake wisely. Sam Larson (Expert Men 30-39).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Doug Hill (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Ralph Havens (Sport Men 40+).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Steep and soft was the recipe for stage three. Dylan Glaser (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Luke Topol kept gaining speed throughout the day to secure second (Expert Junior 17 & Under).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Ben Gore was having a hard day of it. But despite the set backs, remained resolute till the end (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Lorant Domokos (Sport Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Nikki Gemmell (Sport Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Andi Zolton picked up the pace on stage three to secure the win (Pro Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  The ole road-gap-to-flat never gets old.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Sergei Leonov (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Sam Larson (Expert Men 30-39).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  The Brazilian trail starts with a thick tunnel of foliage that flies by in a blinding blur.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Alex Walker (Expert Junior 17 & Under).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Jake Hightower (Expert Junior 17 & Under).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Thomas Cole (Sport Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Jason Williams maintained a steady lead over the competition all day long (Sport Men 40+).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Daniel Pino (Sport Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Corey Yalowicki was plagued by cramps on stage four, but stuck things out till the end (Sport Men 30-39).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  The return of the descents had Leana Gerrard and Emily Sabelhaus smiling along stage four (Pro Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Sarah Olsen (Expert Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Linnea Rooke headed for the top step (Expert Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Climbing trees and startling racers. Marne Fox-Barrow (Expert Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Junior Expert, Pro Women, and Pro Men Podiums.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Right: Trey Wilson and Scott Tucker battle over the available internet during registration.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Dry Hill comes stocked with all the conveniences.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Jason Williams (Sport Men 40+).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Jake Grob (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Luke Strobel and Jason Eiswald starting the morning out right (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Preston Peterson (Expert Men 40+).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Scott Eckert (Sport Men30-39).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Kasper Dean putting in the fast laps during morning practice (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Cutting in the outside lines. Brendan Boyer (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Kris Christensen (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Dylan Brown (Expert Men 17 & Under).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Cakewalk isn't an especially technical trail, but it is fast. Agnes Sauvage (Expert Women 18+ ).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  With all categories racing the same course, practice was plenty busy. Harry Head (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Max Scharf (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Alex Walker calls quits on heckling to go get ready for his race run.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Matt Mangano (Sport Men 17 & Under).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Devon Fabio and Adrian Lee. Lee claimed the win by over four seconds (Sport Men 17 & Under).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  This newish section of trail is maturing nicely with plenty of roots and ruts. Lorant Domokos (Sport Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Nick Lerma making quick work of the tech for his second win of the weekend (Sport Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Malcolm Soelberg came six second behind Lerma to take second (Sport Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Despite the appearance of a new sneaker line, the stump jump still seemed faster way to go. Maxwell Merkle (Sport Men 30-39).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Jason Williams also claimed win number two of the weekend (Sport Men 40+).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Ray Dotterer finished less than a second back (Sport Men 40+).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Zach Fraser (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  A smooth and fast run from Cole Townsend landed him just off the podium (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Sergei Leonov looks through an abrupt berm on Motoguzzi (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  What to do if your trail bike isn't available? Race downhill instead. Jimmy Cloherty-Schwend (Expert Men 18-29).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Bryan Campbell (Expert Men 30-39).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Erik Dukes gets ready to exit the clear cut on White Knuckle (Expert Men 30-39).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Matthew Macartney (Expert Men 40+).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Steven Cloherty and Kelly Melvin. Melvin took first and Cloherty second (Expert Men 40+).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Alex Walker skims the tapeline on White Knuckle (Expert Men 17 & Under).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Zach McCarcken (Expert Men 17 & Under).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Dylan Brown and Joshua Fultz-Veirotte (Expert Men 17 & Under). Brown's lead of nearly four seconds secured his first juniors win.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Amy Josefczyk (Expert Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Agnes Sauvage (Expert Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Michelle Macartney (Expert Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Sarah Olsen holds the line during a fast run that put her well at the top (Expert Women).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Emily Sabelhaus, Kaytlin Melvin, Karen O'Connell (Pro Women). Melvin delivered her first pro win ahead of her teammates.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Harry Head doubles the rock roll on White Knuckle (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  From above, it distinctly appears like you're jumping into nothing. Bob Stenson (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Josh Gibb (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Kris Christensen (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Jason Eiswald leaps to the inside for a straight shot into the catch berm below (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Max Scharf laid down a smoking time of 02:25.48 and held the hot seat right up until the end (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Kasper Dean took third for his first pro podium.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Eric Evans and Brain Davison (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Luke Strobel unseated Scharf by .37 seconds to take his second win of the weekend (Pro Men).

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016
  Junior Expert, Pro Women, and Pro Men Podiums.

Jason Williams Sarah Olsen Erik Dukes Andi Zolton and Luke Strobel.
  Reigning champions: Jason Williams, Sarah Olsen, Erik Dukes, Andi Zolton, and Luke Strobel.

Images from the Cascadia MTB Championships 2016

15 Comments

  • + 14
 So pumped on anything that Eric Ashley covers. Even the sport and expert riders look amazing. I love the coverage of riders that I can hang with, after all being able to participate is *one* of the things that makes MTB rad.
  • + 2
 Agree. Eric is killing it with the coverage!
  • + 4
 Bob Stenson is a natrual enduro athlete, look forward to seeing pictures of him at transcades enduro stage race next year #believeinbob
  • + 4
 There is no such thing as too many pics, especially for a double weekend :p
  • + 3
 Can we give Eric the power the do photo coverage like the WC guys already, and have the full width photos?!
  • + 1
 Great recap Eric! Such a fun weekend on my favorite trails in the state. Dry Hill should run shuttles every weekend...
  • + 1
 It takes a lot of work repairing trails after shuttle/race weekends, but I certainly understand the desire.
  • + 1
 Great photos and recap! Hopefully next year the date won't conflict so Bob and Luke can race Trans Cascadia. #believeinbob
  • + 2
 Luke Takes the win on a 29er??
....the comments go silent
  • + 2
 Bitchin' medals!
  • + 2
 Get job Eric!
  • + 1
 Great pics @ericashley, but you did leave out plate #122 (-;
  • - 1
 Dam that Canfield is sexy!!
  • - 1
 Most pics evar?
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