Singlespeed USA 2012, Stowe Vermont
It's been a great year for singlespeed specific races/events for me and the East Coast in general. First we had Singlespeed-a-palooza in New York and this past weekend Stowe VT and Bike29.com played host to Singlespeed USA.
Kevin, Dustin and I headed up to VT Friday afternoon. Dustin's old ski coach Jason lives in town and was super nice to let us crash at his house. We got there before he was home from work, so we did what we do best; hang out while drinking a few beers, enjoying the perfect VT weather.
Friday night we headed to the Matterhorn to pick up our race plates, t shirt (awesome, by the way) and enjoy some pre-race festivities. The bar was packed and a good band called the Eames Brothers were rocking out and keeping everyone pumped for the next days "race".
Race start time was 10am, we rolled into the Polo fields around 9 to find a jam packed parking lot. We met up with Mark and his wife and stood around for a while waiting for the start. Here is a pic to prove we were there, stolen from Mark, as usual.
Here's the view from the back of the pack as George holds court, going over the rules, including the most important rule: "don't be a douche".
3 miles into the ride, at the top of a rather long climb, was the first beer stop. The Alchemist was serving their increasingly popular Heady Topper along with another new beer. Mr Alchemist himself was there, handing out round after round of awesomeness.
We then took off riding lots of fun singletrack, double track and random sections of road. I had never ridden in Stowe before, but the terrain delivered the goods. Technical and rooty enough to keep it a challenge but also super flowey and built for some sweet singlespeeding.
Around 18 (?) miles in we finally made it to the bigger "aid station" sponsored by DrunkCyclist.com. If you were looking for Accelerade, you had better keep on riding. This station featured whiskey, tequila, beer and plenty of junk food. I had an awesome maple donut, 2 PBR's, a shot of whiskey and of tequila - it was all delicous and made me forget that I still had another 10 miles of riding to finish.
Dustin took to bitting through some PBR's, to the delight of everyone. Good thing he had his glasses on, safety first kids.
As I mentioned, the 4 major food groups were featured. The atmosphere was awesome, it was motivating to see so many other riders out having a good time while not taking anything too seriously.
This Tequila was smooth, I wish I could make out the brand on the bottle, if anyone reading this happens to know, leave a comment! that stuff was good.
Eventually we got back to riding. We crossed back into town, hitting two major climbs on the way to the end of the ride. As usual, I was feeling good now that we were 15+ miles into the ride, the alcohol didn't factor in much for me. But the donut helped, I think. Here is the data as my Garmin reported it, on the loosely defined course.
After all the climbing was done we were greatly rewarded with a trip down Kimmer's Trail. Which is probably the best trail I have ever ridden (surpassing everything at Kingdom trails). At the bottom we dumped out to the finish, the party was in full swing. We made it just in time to see the derby for the belt. Here is some video and a photo of Dejay Birtch bowling people over one at a time to take the title.
singlespeed usa from shaun pinney on Vimeo.
And finally it was time for the battle of hosting rights for next years Singlespeed USA. It came down to a very Vermonty Maple Syrup chugging contest. Some guy from MN downed an entire pint (plus booze) in a couple of seconds - impressive work. I hope we can make it out there next summer!
We headed back to the house and had a nice dinner, thanks to Jason again for hosting us and grilling up some dinner. Thanks to George and the Bike29.com crew for putting on an awesome, fun event. The bar has been set high for Minnesota. Goodnight Vermont!
My complete set of photos from the weekend.