In the week leading up to the event I wasn't sure I'd be able to make it to the Benduro. Then Josh called and asked if I would help pre-run and tape the course. I was stoked to participate and help out with these logistics but there was only one problem, I didn't have a trail bike. So I told him I would stay in touch. Luckily, my teammate, Lorin Whitaker offered to let me ride his Canfield 29er! Everything came together and with just enough time to pack I began the drive to Bootleg!
On Friday we got a 4:30 AM early start to drive the 400+miles to Bootleg canyon from salt lake city. We unloaded the bikes right away and started picking our way through the course. It's definitely not an easy race. The rocks and very technical terrain of bootleg make for some hard earned miles, but after a few laps you find some rhythm and riding this place is unbelievable. The amount of flow it has for how raw the trails are makes for a pretty unique place! This benduro is particularly gnarly because the trails are linked together! It's one thing to go do shuttle runs and skid down a face all day, but linking crazy steep DH trails on a trail bike, and pedalling up the other stages, and up the road 4 times (twice each day) makes for a long day!Day One:
The First 2 stages came right down the face on some of the most fun and steep parts of the mountain! Stage 3 and 4 required a lot more pedalling and navigation skills! There were a few flat tires and a crash where Tucker Norman managed to rip his rear tire off coming into the "toilet bowl" and went OTB really hard smashing the front of his helmet to bits! Good thing KALI sent out a bunch of helmets to the Benduro! By the end of the first day, all the athletes made it down and were ready for Sunday! Day Two:
Stages 1 and 2 were burly, to say the least, beginning with ONA LEE and Ginger! Followed by a pedalling transfer to stages 3 and 4, Boy scout, West Leg, Mother and P.O.W making for a long last stage to the finish! After two days of racing, everyone crossed the finish line with a big smile and sore legs!!
Josh Bender and Matt Wenske taping trail!
Another rad touch was having Greenstone play some killer music every night to get us pumped for the next day!
The event was an absolute blast and can't wait to suffer more at the next event! #Bootlegbenduro
Keep up the great work Lindsay and Josh!! We cant thank you guys enough for everything you have done for the sport! Big thanks to all the volunteer support as well! Big shout out to Magura, KALI, and Guayaki for throwing down with products!
Bender presenting the Red Lantern award to Tucker Norman. Loaded up with Yerba for the weekend!
Aston Smith looking fast all weekend! By far the fastest guy around the hairpin turn to the finish! Kickstand blasting down skyline on the 29er yeliscreamy!
Pre-Runner on course!
Course pre-runner Jeremy "Kickstand" Hottinger tearing it up before and after the event! Whitaker Hiking up, Representing for Canfield Brothers, Guayaki and Sr Suntour
Lorin Whitaker rode his Canfield Balance all weekend and slayed it!
Huge thanks to everyone involved with the event! Can't wait to see it grow and make sure you register for the next stop!
APRIL 14-16: BOOTLEG
JUNE 9-11: EL DORADO
NOVEMBER 10-12: ZIONwww.benduro.com