COTOPAXI 2010 DAY 2
Ready for the “off”
Still windy and a little cooler this morning but as start time comes the temperature is going up. A
quick review of yesterday’s results shows that competition will be fierce in Mod Classic Experts with
Rick Daniel, Mike Wehling and Ron Pocher going round together to make sure nobody finds a
cheater line. Mod Classic Int will be tight with all and sundry trying to knock Fred Martinson off his
perch. Mod Classic Novice looks like being an Arndt family affair while Mike Buchholz, whose Suzuki
isn’t ready yet, goes for his quest in Premier Lightweight Experts on his faithful Greeves. Having got
One back yesterday over Eugene I shall be trying for a repeat in Classic Experts.
One less section today and once again 1’s and 2’s will start at the Falls while everyone else can go
and chew up Section 1 named the Horseshoe. A fairly simple reverse of yesterday at the Falls
crossing the rocky ledge and then dropping into the lower pool before climbing out at a new position
and then looping round the fir tree to the exit. Clearly I didn’t give this enough thought and came out
of the pool too quickly for a poor position and a very silly dab to start the day. Very, very dumb!
Mike Wehling, on the Yam today, at the top of the Falls that he built
Rick Daniel follows on my old Ossamaha
Ron Pocher in the MC Experts group
At the Horseshoe many are wasting marks on the initial turn in the deep wash sand and if that
doesn’t get them then the off cambered slope on the loose dirt is taking it’s toll as many are dropping
in straight and losing the front wheel. It needs the front offset by 30 to follow the slope and then let the
rear slide down before turning straight. The 1 liners have a nasty tight turn after the slope in more
wash sand with a rock just where the front wheel would like to go. 2’s need to run the front round a
ledge and then squirt up a steep bank with rocks and dirt. My turn comes and the bike is on rails and
I slip through for the first clean. Well I needed that after the early morning dumbness at the Falls.
Out of the wash and up to No2 where Todd and Bill Brokaw are doing the checking. From what I’m
seeing 2 lines are useable with either a tighter right turn to a full on attack at the upper gorge or a
wider softer line around the steep rocks, but this requires perfect throttle control. Nobody seems to
be getting it right with lots of dabs on the turn and then losing others on the climb from poor entry
position and weight too far back. Mike B and I agree on the line and speed and it works well for me
for another “first” clean.Thats more like it ! Grief that dab on the opener is now becoming very
annoying now that I’m through these tough two sections.
Section 3 has a downhill drop over some big flat rocks then a choice of lines for the second hazard.
The tighter line takes you up a steeper sharp topped rock but puts you on a good line to make a right
hander around a big tree, however, misjudge the speed off the rock and the front will be airborne, or
not enough speed and you could ground out on the knife edge rock. I see all three results while I’m
thinking! The other choice is a less steep approach up the knife edge which has a handy “kicker”
rock at the bottom. I choose this option and it rides nicely for a good safe clean.
At the bottom of the hill lurks No4 and is a variation on previous year’s themes. Initial part of the
section is fairly simple but then the second hazard is where the fun starts! 1 liners take on a tight
turn into a rock pile, and I saw the “other ” Rick of the Daniels type take a 5 in this, before climbing out
over another pile of jumbled rocks. 2 liners have a choice of wide up a groove before turning, but you
run the risk of crossing your own line, or 2 directions through the more solid bed rock. One is a
tempting footrest wide approach or in my view ride the ridge . Mike B shares my thoughts. The ridge
line works well so off up Tucker’s Hill to find 5.
Ed bumps over another ridge line in 4
A downhill meander in the granite ball bearings with lots of choices as to how to get out from the
bottom. Simplest line is straight up the dirt slot but I’m told this didn’t work when they were laying out
as it was too soft. Choice 2, from the bottom cut back to the bed rock and then go right/left to the exit
or if you fancy turn earlier on the downhill and take a more direct approach over the bed rock with a
little right/ left flick. I take the soft dirt line which is completely “virgin” and half way up hit a mini sawn
off tree stump which aviates the front wheel coming very close to the blue tape requiring the dab to
realign. Well its a good line and now I know about the stump!
Once more on the loop and over to 6 where Ed has put in those vicious tight turns where I might have
to play with the clutch which I don’t much care for. Over a fallen tree then around another log and
between an upright fir to set up for a downhill left to go over a huge round boulder. Out right and round
tree one, before setting up around tree two and against the rock face to finish with an uphill tight left
around tree three. I clearly take the first turn too tight and the wheel starts to slip which while easing
the brake puts me in a very awkward position for the big boulder………. safety dab ensues, and good
work through the trees to escape for just one point.
No 7 called “Nukin Futz”is a full bore climb up granite marbles into a series of turns to regain a steep
downhill back to the checker. Just a little care on the speed and it rides out well. First loop total 3,
which could easily have been clean so time to rethink the sections where the dabs were lost.
Out for loop 2 and pleasing cleans on 1 and 2 where Todd tells me Mike and I are the only riders
through with double cleans. Stay with the same line in 3 and that goes well too.
Back down to 4 where chaos is breaking out especially on the 1 line. Wolfy is taking the wide line
and using it well but I still like the ridge line in the middle. All goes seemingly well as I round the last
turn in the wash sand to set up for the rock ridge when the front wheel stops!!! …… perhaps I should
say it stopped rotating as a branch had gone through the spokes and locked up behind the forks,
fortunately I was still moving forward and an extra dab and a kick was required to break the branch
free and escape for a 2. Certainly an odd one there and a very annoying loss of marks.
Wolfy on the wider line in 4
Take the soft dirt line again in 5 and clean it easily so on round the loop for 6 and the tight turns.
Once again my set up is not good and I arrive off line at the rock and take an identical dab to the
previous loop. The turns go well but I’m on another 3 for this loop.
7 is no problem and a much better attempt at the Falls and through for the clean.
A much better line through the Falls
Last loop and I see I have an 8 point advantage over Eugene after the first two loops. Sail through
1 & 2 again and a cheering Todd informs me that I’m the only triple clean as Mike goofed it for a dab.
Clean 4 without collecting branches and another clean up the soft dirt hill of 5.
Rewalk 6 and see where I’m going wrong. OK, take a wider line which gives me a much better
approach to the big boulder and I’m up and over it easily and now set up for the turns. Coming out of
the second I think I turned too early and even with the clutch and full lock I was tight on the tape and
forced to take 2 to stay in bounds……**** !! Sprint through 7 and no mistakes on 8 to finish the day
on 8 points which on reflection I could perhaps have gone clean?
Through the Falls for the last clean
Back at the results table the scores are in and some interesting Championship developments !
In MC Experts Rick Daniel is on a mission with 2 fine wins to go with a win and second at Buckeye. He
is well placed if he rides Donner and Casper again. Dave Dewonia had an excellent weekend on the
big Gold Star with 2 wins in Prem Hwy Exp. Fred was in fine form with 2 more wins in MC Int to go
with his win in OK, and with only 4 more needed he has home ground at Casper, a couple at Tooele,
and Milliken where he always goes well…… sorry John but “old age” has it’s perks!
In the “Cub” section Dan and Bob are nearly home after wins at Buckeye, OK and another fine double
a piece this weekend.
Mike Buchholz is planning his assault on Prem Lt Expert with 40 points in the bag here, so with
Casper, Tooele and Milliken Hugh had better watch out !
Eugene and I are still at it with Eugene needing 3 more wins and I have to beat him in any head to
head event to score 4 wins or he will get it on the “old age” rule.
MC Novice is still wide open and while the Arndt family are swopping positions Steve Doyle had a
great return to form sweeping past both of them on Sunday for the win. Steve also goes well at
Milliken where he had a zero card last year.
Wolf Creek with a bursting river
As usual lots to think about on the drive home which was almost incident free until 2 miles from the
house when there was a horrendous BANG ! Sounded like the chassis had snapped in half or the
front end suspension had gone. First inspections reveal nothing but safety first the big rig is nursed
home at 15 mph. As it transpires just another RV thing, and a piece of alloy that acts as a part of the
driver’s front wheel fender had fatigued and was flapping about and over any of “the many” Colorado
bumps this thing was making the most God awful noise!
What’s that awful noise Daddy ?…. don’t worry Hayden it’s a “RV” thing!
Much as I’d like to be on the campaign trail Trials has again come to a halt until September although
I still fancy Steamboat and the Ute Cup…… we will see.
Full results can be seen at www.ahrma.org and follow icons to trials
p.s. Brenda didn’t take as many pictures as you lot aren’t buying them!