April 17, 2009 (Monterey, CA) – Just after noon on Friday the Pro women’s Super D went all downhill at the Sea Otter Classic, too quickly for some, but surprising second placed Canadian Mary Ellen Ash, behind winner Kelli Emmitt, was effusive, “It went down so fast and furious! The course was super flowing so you can really hold yer line, and I duked and pedalled behind another Canadian (Wendy Simms) as I wasn’t sure about this course, so I just rode it safely waiting for a sprint finish.”
“The course looked like one sled ride in shade-less fire roads with nothing but 6 to +20% grades to barrel down which finished just 40 meters before a nasty curve and narrow bridge slowing down the finishing kick,” said Ash, “In fact I didn’t stop pedaling “” and I didn’t ever have to use the brakes, I just flew over the bridge and got past Simms and Rachel Lloyd, my heroes!
Simms (Kona) was very diplomatic about coming in 4th. “I was enjoying trying out my new bike and just attacked at the wrong time, I used up a lot of energy dragging the others through the wind, but that’s ok, I really like the Super D, it’s pure adrenaline!”
Ash offered some perspective on the race, “I’m not a climber, so this is the only time I can rub shoulders with the best of the best – it’s pretty exciting for me to race besides these stars!” Canada’s third rider in the small field, Jean Ann McKirdy (Local Ride), did not finish.
Decker Dominates Again
Carl Decker (USA) Giant, the Decker-ator as he’s known, pulled off his second straight Pro Super D championship on Friday under perfect conditions and a fast field. Both the pro men and women rambled down the same dirt, flying up and down the wide fire roads under a blazing sun and practically no headwind.
This was not the same weather as in years past which featured mud, sinister winds and major accidents marring the race. Decker, grinning widely added, “I felt like I was just catching good wind on a few of the jumps and just got shot ahead, it was magic today – and it’s nice though kind of strange the weather was so good this year.”
When asked how it felt with back-to-back wins he added, “When Adam (Craig his teammate) doesn’t show, I can win.” As Craig won two years ago, maybe their team’s domination has the edge, and in more than one way – Decker wears a moto-cross helmet, and when asked why he smiled, “It makes me believe that I can go 50 miles an hour, it insulates me from the noise and wind, and I don’t tear up either.”
As the only Canadian male rider competing, Chris Everist, a 19-year-old from Huntsville, Ontario, who finished 8th had nothing to prove but wanted to do well. “It was fast, no time to react, just boom – it was better than I anticipated, so I hit it hard though I got caught up on one of the bends while trying to keep a good line. I’d like to come back and try this again.”
Canada’s Allison and Brooks Win
BC’s Tyler Allison (Can) Cycling BC the lone Canuck in the field lead the charge in the 18 and Under Men’s Super D taking the win over Casey Sanchez (USA) in second and Chase Dickens (USA) in third. In the women’s U18 race Cayley Brooks (Can) Team Hardwood/Trek topped the field while her sister Kristin placed 5th. Kristin went on to win the women’s 13-14 cross-country race later the same day.
Full men’s results pdf here.
Full women’s results pdf here.
Full 18 and Under Men’s results here.
1. Kelli Emmitt (USA) 7:15.5
2. Mary Ellen Ash (Can) 7:17.2
3. Rachel Lloyd (USA) 7:18.7
4. Wendy Simms (Can) Kona 7:23.2
DNF Jean Ann McKirdy (Can) Local Ride
1. Cark Decker (USA) Giant 6:21.7
2. Aaron Bradford (USA) 6:30.2
3. Nate Byrom (USA) 6:30.9
8. Chris Everist (Can) 6:39.5
1. Tyler Allison (Can) Cycling BC 6:53.7
2. Casey Sanchez (USA) 6:56.9
3. Chase Dickens (USA) 6:57.9
1. Cayley Brooks (Can) Team Hardwood/Trek 7:57.7
2. Kjersten Lone (Can) 7:59.2
3. Christine Weir (USA) 8:00.0
4. Nicole Rehder (USA) 8:49.9
5. Kristin Brooks (Can) Team Hardwood/Trek 9:48.4