Super “D”iva- Jill Takes on Ashland

Oregon Enduro Series Race#2

Ashland, OR 6/23-24/2012

by Jill Hardiman

(edited by M.M.Blomberg)

    Hmmm, enduro racing?  Well, to a cross-country girl it does not seem 
like enduro or endurance racing in the sense that I am familiar with, being long hours and miles on the trail.  But, it does seem to mean enduring lots of logistics, shuttles, fair bit of disorganization, and waiting for your time to go as fast as you can downhill.  This can be super fun, and terrifying all at the same time.

I am still having a hard time with the fact that to do well you need to be pushing yourself at a limit, which feels just slightly out of control.  I interpret this as being on the verge of crashing at any given moment because you only have 4 to 30 min to show what you got.  Dare, I say it the small hills all of sudden seem long when you have been pinning it from the time you leave the gate to the bottom of the run.  Always racing against the clock, hoping no one is catching you and you are gaining on the girl in front.  In the end going downhill as fast as you can is exhilarating and fun.

Downhill Demon!

Ashland had four stages, three quite short in the 4-8 min range, and the longer super D course, which I completed in under 30 min. Oh yeah, more on the Super D course, we started in the snow, at about 39 degrees, the trail was clear, but the trees were flocked.  And yes,
the single track on the Super D was fast, fun, and flowy, not really
anything technical.

I was in third place after day 1, and
 fairly pleased with those results.  I was a bit disappointed after day
 2, I think I finished 7th that day, to get 5th overall for the stages (open cat 1 women). Oh, and I failed to mention I caught my camel bak mouthpiece on my
seat during stage 3. Which was a bit distracting until I got it 

So, apparently I need to keep my head completely in the game for the 
longer runs, sprint faster up the hills, use my brakes way less, and
 corner way faster.  In the end, I can say I am improving as far as 
downhill speeds go.  Now, my fitness on the other hand…well as I said, 
enduro is not like any endurance events I have competed in, the days
 are long in an entirely different way.


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