The second stop on the Dunbar Cycles Summer Series was held at Panorama Mountain Resort this past weekend for the Canada Cup / BC Cup event of the season. Though the skies were ominous, riders were not deterred – seemingly oblivious to the mud, rain, and general slip and slide that hit the mountain on Saturday. Sadly, Saturday’s Whip-Off was cancelled due to the downpour, but the rain cleared for close to 100 riders to attend the Summer Series famous riders meetings. Though it looked like Sunday would be a repeat weather-wise, the rain held off and the sun came out, even through to podiums!
Nearly 200 riders, including just over 50 Elite Men, from Quebec, Alberta, Ontario, BC and Montana, tried their luck on a World Cup Level Course. On the Women’s side of things, there were 5 Elite Women participating, led by World Cup vets, Vaea Verbeeck and Claire Buchar, and being challenged by up-and-comer, Georgia Astle, who ended up winning Elite Women with a time of 3:57!
Kirk McDowall appears to be on a bit of a rampage, winning the Elite Men category with a time of 3:18. This win adds to his Provincial Title, won at Whistler Bike Park, as well as his win at the Western Open in Golden BC. Kirk will be representing Dunbar Cycles at Mont-Sainte-Anne World Cup in August. Rounding out the podium – in second place: Forrest Riesco, third place: Matthew Beer, Fourth place: Chris Kovarik, and fifth place: Sidney Slotegraaf. This was a hotly contested event – hot seat after hot seat. The last man down the mountain ultimately won the event. With Tippie whipping the crowd into a frenzy, it was the race of the season thus far.
In the Junior Expert Men category, Magnus Manson, who rides for Devinci Global Racing, won the event with a time of 3:24 – nearly over 4 seconds over the second place rider: Adam Robbins. This would have placed Magnus on the fourth step among the Elite Men! In Third place, Henry Fitzgerald was less than one second off Adam Robbins. It’s safe to say the next generation of racers is exceedingly strong!
The Mom of the Weekend Award was won by Marnie Regan, mother of Josh Regan. She won it for her support of her son’s pursuit of racing and all things DH. Eric Hartley won the KORE "Dirtbag" Award, and went home with a huge prize pack from KORE Components. Eric was nominated by multiple racers for his dedication to racing with minimal resources behind his race season. George Amos was lucky enough to win the Intense M16 frame – provided by Intense Cycles, and awarded by Chris and Claire Kovarik. George was in desperate need of a frame, and his win coincided with his 30th Birthday! All proceeds from this raffle went to the Love for Lola fund, which helps with Stephen Exley’s daughter’s rehabilitation after a brain injury when she was two.
The fastest amateurs, Kayleigh Stewart, with a time of 4:36 in the Junior Women Category, and Magnus Manson were awarded beautiful sport watches by Momentum Watches, out of Vancouver BC.
The Dunbar Cycle Summer Series continues to dominate downhill racing in Canada this summer. These are not-to-be-missed events like none other on the circuit. The camaraderie, team pits, prizing, medals, and total package are bar-none, the best to be experienced. The next event is the Fernie BC Cup Finals, taking place at Fernie Alpine Resort on August 28. Historically, Fernie is everyone’s favourite course – providing the best dirt available in BC on an incredibly fun, long and steep track. Don’t miss it!
New to the 2016 BC Cup race circuit is the LIV Lounge, a race pit for just for women racers. It’s no secret that women make up a smaller demographic at downhill bike races, so in a continued effort to make the Dunbar Summer Series bigger, better, and to grow the presence of women in the sport, SE Racing dreamed up the ultimate race pit to support and encourage ladies at his events. LIV came on board as a sponsor to provide the pit area, and Leanne Johnston to provide support and coaching to those new to the race world. The LIV Lounge has quickly become the most envied pit at the races with its plush blow-up couches, fun fake palm plants, fire-pit and mechanic area. More than just a place to store your gear and chill between laps, the lounge has become a home base for all the women to connect with other riders of any age, in any category, of any skill level and have a place where they belong.
“It has been an incredible opportunity to work with the Dunbar Summer Series and LIV Canada to help co-host the first ever LIV Lounge and to support other women who are newer to the race world. Every lap I’ve done over the race weekend has been with other women who are also racing, working together to find the best lines, conquer new features and dial in our runs to feel comfortable and confident to race the course on race day. As a racer, I love having a space to come back to in-between practice laps where I can catch my breath, work on my bike and talk about the course with other racers. As a coach, I love being able to help other ladies challenge themselves and experience success on the track, and to feel included as part of a “team” at the lounge. As a female, I have no problem getting muddy, riding hard and smashing out laps among the boys, but there’s just something about having a pit where you can come back to relax and hang out with other girls that and makes the whole race experience that much more fun.” – Leanne Johnston
Registration for the 2016 Fernie BC Cup Finals can be found here: www.CCNBIKES.com
|This was one of the best Canadian DH events I've been to. The trail crew has made the track more World Cup-like than ever before and organization from Stephen Exley was on point as always. I'm looking forward to carrying the momentum from my win here to Canadian Nationals, Mont Sainte Anne World Cup and the Dunbar Summer Series finals in Fernie BC. - Kirk McDowall|
Panorama DH Final
Updated BC Cup standings can be found on ROOTS & RAIN
So if you missed out on the Panorama CND Cup | BC Cup, you won’t want to miss the BC Cup Finals! Fernie Alpine Resort | August 28th Weekend! Registration for the final stop on the Dunbar Summer Series in Fernie BC can be found here: www.CCNBIKES.com
Photos By: Kaz Yamamura Photography
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