Just some thoughts and experiences from a mountain bike endurance racer who likes to ride and race his single speed mountain bike a long long way on remote single track in the mountains and desert.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

2012 Sedona Big Friggin Loop Mountain Bike Race, Arizona

The 2012 Sedona Big Friggin loop was awesome.  This was my third time doing this underground race and it was one of the best courses yet!  http://rockyroad5050.wordpress.com/3-sedona-big-friggin-loop/

As usual the ability to navigate the route is key.  Having a gps with the route uploaded is a must.  There should be a special trophy for any rider that was able to complete the course without navigation but I don’t think that happened.   The route had a bunch of newly built singletrack that was spectacular,

They don’t typically track singlespeeds separately but I think I had the fastest finishing SS time and 10th overall although there were some people in front of me that didn’t complete the correct race route.

The field was stacked with super-fast riders!

I ran a 32x19 but I would run a 32x20 for this exact course next time.  I have the same Schwalbe Racing Ralphs front and rear that I used for the 24 hours in the old pueblo and the Fat Tire 40 and they still have a lot of life left.

The race started out at the Bike-N-Bean in Oak Creek and immediately entered sweet singletrack that contoured the hillside then climbed over the crest into a knarly descent.  A ranger was on hand to collect the $3 fee to enter the Red Rock park.  After spinning out a pavement the route took us on a mean rocky climb that was rideable.  We crossed the main road in Sedona by the school and entered some new singletrack that paralleled the road and it took us on some great new well-built singletrack.  The route twisted and turned through washes and along canyons in the northwest end of Sedona.  Great views!  About four hours into the ride we hit some classic trails on the north side of Sedona and took the route all the way into town.  We his some pavement then joined some singletrack on the south east side of the town and grunted up the last significant climb.  After the saddle we took a killer descent followed by some ups and down ending up at the Bike-N-Bean for the finish.  There a keg and pizza was waiting for everyone.  Fun post-race party with plenty of bench racing! 

Thanks Chad for organizing such a great event!  I’ll be back next year!