The usual gong show of Glenn Franks (Angry Dad), Ryan Walters (Emo), Rob Stead (Hoff) and myself met early at the ferry terminal. The goal was to walk on to the ferry, and then about an hour and half later meet up with some friends in Naniamo, who’d give us a ride up to Cumberland. Angry Dad and myself were to meet up with our friend Chris, while Hoff and Emo were catching a ride with another Ryan.

The ferry trip over was fairly uneventful. We were all pretty tired, and there wasn’t any new material for us to make fun of. So we quietly sat, mostly bored, waiting for someone to do something dumb. That didn’t take too long because once we arrived in Naniamo we met up with Ryan and his Taliban-mobile. Ryan drives an unknown (because the badges have all rusted off) 1982 diesel Mercedes. All it needs to fit right into a a middle eastern conflict is some bullet holes.

How to look like a terrorist by Ryan Gustafson

This gave us great material for the drive up and created much laughter. Thanks for that Ryan. We arrived in Cumberland safely, got changed into our riding gear, and started hiking the course. The race course in Cumberland is really fun. It’s only about 2 minutes descending time, but packs in a good variety of terrain in that short time. The top is a bit flat and pedally with some tricky corners and a couple jumps. As the trail enters the trees the speeds increase, the trail gets steeper, and offers up a series of corners loaded with rocks and roots. A blink of an eye and you’re spat over the finish line with big grin on your face. We hiked the course twice on the Saturday, and retired to laughs and drinks at the Riding Fool Hostel.

If you’re ever planning on doing a riding trip to the Island do yourself a favour and stay in Cumberland at the Riding Fool Hostel … even if it’s just for a night. We all really liked the hostel. It was clean, had great¬†amenities, and the staff were rad. The trails in Cumberland looked awesome, and I’ve heard good things from riders who’ve actually ridden more than just the race course. As per usual we drank a bunch on the Saturday night and had a bit of a party.

Dodge City Cycles is the bike shop in Cumberland, with the Riding Fool Hostel perched above it, two fantastic institutions

Classic Cumberland. What exactly is a Patch Big Store? Do they sell Patch Bigs? Or did someone get English mixed up? Either way it doesn't seem to be working as the windows were boarded up. A spring sale was promised, but we were unsure as to which spring they meant.

Come Sunday we all headed out to the race site. We got in 3 runs in the morning (uplift lines were lengthy), and were all enjoying the course thoroughly. The weather was glorious, and the track was slowly drying out. After practice was chatted with some other buddies, and soon headed up for our race runs. We could see a nasty system of weather moving our way, and luckily Emo, Hoff and I got away before the hail storm came. Some elites weren’t so lucky, and had to race down in near blizzard conditions. I made a couple mistakes on my run that were costly given how short the course was. I felt strong and fast on the bike, but obviously need to work on my consistency and pace to keep up with the faster guys. Once the dust and hail settled the Polartec Team John Henry Bikes Powered by Ethical Bean DH team placed 16th, 17th and 18th with myself on a 2:13, and then Hoff and Emo respectively on 2:15s.

Complimentary burgers and drinks for all the competitors was just icing on the cake of what was already one kick ass event

There was a bike toss (for a prize that I can't remember) to keep us entertained between when racing finished and awards

One of the fast rocky sections on the Cumberland DH course

A photo from my race run. This section was also really fast and rocky.


2011 Cumberland Island Cup DH Results

Cheers to the gong show for an awesome week-end. There were some epic laughs over chimp frogs, drunken dudes getting off the ferry, sketchy ladies in Cumberland, Jenga, Scrabble, cheeky kids stealing ice cream to name a few. Cheers to Chris for picking us and giving us a ride up and back.

These enterprising young rippers engineered a way of making a cup of ice cream much larger by using stir sticks. When the ferry people told them they'd be charged double they threatened to leave it on the counter. Pretty cheeky.

It’ll be a hectic week for me as I prepare for BC Cup # 1 in Kamloops this coming week-end. I don’t believe Emo or Hoff will be joining, but some others from the downillers from Polartec Team John Henry Bikes Powered by Ethical Bean will be coming along. Until then Happy Easter.

One Response to “2011 Cumberland DH Island Cup”

  1. Cheeky little bastards. Why didn’t I think of that?

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