Friday, June 17, 2016

US Cup Missoula Pre-ride (presented by Ridebiker :)

Friday's are for course pre-rides. For most domestic races like this we arrive on Thursday, pre-ride Friday and race Saturday and Sunday. It's a great routine and Friday may be my favorite day of the race weekend shenanigans. I love getting familiar with courses I haven't seen since last year, seeing all the usual familiar racer buddy faces and meeting racers I haven't yet had the pleasure of meeting.

My pre-ride here in Missoula today was short and sweet, beginning with a lap with two of the coolest teenagers I know, and ending with a sweet little 'ride with the pros' group lap. The course is the same awesome epic climb followed by steep fun descent on trails that wind up the ski slopes of Marshall Mountain and down through the trees between the slopes. The climbs twist their way up narrow, buffed out singletrack, creating a maze of course tape as they twist back and forth between steep, sharp switchbacks. The descent is screaming fast, down tacky steep trails with a few fun jumps and the usual scary A-line gap jump.

This year the Missoula race is extra exciting/special, because for one this race has stepped up its game and is now an HC category race where coveted UCI points are more abundant (those are the hard to earn points that help me move up my start position in World Cups and World Championships!) AND the title sponsor is Ridebiker Alliance, who is also MY title sponsor :)

Adam, ground support super hero!
So cross country mountain bike racing is growing in the US because Ridebiker is working hard to provide us with UCI races where these valuable points are available, as well as a level of competition which could help riders like me develop and improve my racing for the global stage. Yeah, I feel really lucky to have opportunities like this AND to have such a stout support crew on the ground here in Missoula taking care of us.


I have felt compelled to blog about Ridebiker for the past couple weeks because, as the season progresses, I feel like the emphasis of my blog and social media has swung heavily towards day to day occurrences and race recaps. I know that's the exciting stuff (maybe, you tell me!), but between those glory moments when my face is full sized on Redbull.tv or I'm on the podium at some race, these guys are still here for me. They provide support for 16 of us 'professional' mountain bike racers at and in-between the races to help us chase the dream that is developing talent and hard work into something more. They pour money and resources INTO the races themselves to cultivate a competitive racing scene at which we can develop our skills, and for all of this I am extremely grateful.

So between the support from Ridebiker and our staff of amazing, hardworking people both in SoCal and here on the ground, and the support from every single person who has cheered for me, read my blog, commented on Facebook... I am pretty much always overwhelmed with gratitude to be surrounded by such awesome people. I honestly don't know what I did in my past lives to deserve you all :)

And I want to do more for my blog readers, kinda like a little thank you! That's why I'm going to pick a comment-er from THIS POST at random to give one of my Ridebiker kits to. I wish there was a way to pick a reader at random because I think commenting requires logging on to blogger or some business, but I don't know how to do that (yet), so for now you have to jump through a hoop or two to win :)

On Tuesday (life on the road :) I will announce the winner and I will get in touch with you about kit size and your address so I can mail it to you.

And to everyone who doesn't win but wants to rock the kit, YOU CAN BUY IT on the Ridebiker website!
http://www.ridebiker.com/sign-up which also requires signing up (which is free). I'm told they can make the kit in men's sizes, but they may need to tweak the site, so maybe email me if you're a dude and I can work directly with Sugoi.

AND LASTLY, if you REALLY want to support me and my team mates and every aspiring mountain bike racer (and road and CX... actually) and the whole mountain bike racing scene in the US you CAN! If you are a member of a club or race team who wears custom kits, like all matching ones, switching your clothing manufacturer to Sugoi through Ridebiker Alliance goes a LONG way to keeping races like this on the calendar, and supporting our team. It's free to join Ridebiker Alliance, and Sugoi has crazy good pricing on team clothing, plus no minimum orders, and great customer support in creating your team's custom kit! I know it's kinda hokey to plug this on a giveaway post, but hey, I got your attention, right :) haha, but really, I do feel pretty convicted about how much Ridebiker has done for me and the XC race scene in the US so I wanted to take a minute to share the love :)

Thanks for reading my blog. Seriously, thank you. I could go on and on, but I'll stop here. You guys rock and I'll try to arrange other giveaways to express all my gratitude and love! :)

And now a picture from the 'ride with the pros'... check out that little climbing harness :) pretty cool stuff!




22 comments:

  1. Nice write up. Not only because of the free kit (even for dudes) but mostly because if your sheer enthusiasm and dedication to the sport, female athletes and your sponsor. Rock on and good luck piling up some precious points this weekend Larissa

    Rick Gravley

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  2. Woohoo go Larissa! Isn't Montana so beautiful?!

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  3. Great write up! Was just gushing about your kit :)

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  4. Will look into Sugoi for our future team kits... Cool way to support U.S. XC scene. G'luck!!

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  5. Nice write up! Best of luck out there! Been a fan of yours for a couple of years. Keep on living the dream!

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  6. Larissa! GO CRUSH IT ON THE MTB!! I am so appreciative of how you hooked me up with the kick-ass Team Lost Coast Brewery folks; I've been having a blast racing with them this season! Your blogs are super inspiring to me, especially as an aspiring 1st-year pro. I'll be chearing you on from Colorado this weekend and would be so stoked to rock one of your kits:).
    Forever stoked!
    Liz Gruber

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  7. Living vicariously through your blog. Always a pleasure reading your exploits.

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  8. Living vicariously through your blog. Always a pleasure reading your exploits.

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  9. Thank you for your blog! You have such an inspiring story, it's been fun to have a way to follow it. Great job in the World Cup races so far!

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    2. AND THE WINNER IS... Jessica!!! Email me your address and kit size info and I can get the ball rolling on getting you a kit! my email address is lmfitchett@gmail.com Congrats!!

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  10. I remember meeting you exactly one year ago. We were both parked next to each other in Big Bear. Both sick. Both raced. Go get them today! More importantly, have a blast ;)

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  11. Keep up the good work! Your energy and enthusiasm is rubbing off on everyone!!

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  12. Always so great to see your write up...you do a great job of explaining the processes and rules...you are such a positive influence on the sport you love so much...hope to see you soon...
    Love you...

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  13. Always so great to see your write up...you do a great job of explaining the processes and rules...you are such a positive influence on the sport you love so much...hope to see you soon...
    Love you...

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  14. Your enthusiasm for cycling is infectious, my wife and I love your blog. Your improvement and progression is a great story, that we enjoy watching unfold.

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  15. It has been a pleasure and an inspiration to watch you race this season. My favorite moment from this year was watching you on the technical section at Bonelli. It was obvious you were going to clean it easily but you still smiled your megawatt smile and shouted "I did it!" when you did. It still makes my daughter and I smile when we talk about it!

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  16. Another terrific post. I like them all: van renovation, travel days, recon and racing. You convey each day well, and give us a glimpse into your journey. Thank you so much for taking the time to share.

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  17. I want to try my luck...
    Larissa, your blog is great :) always wishing you good luck!

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  18. Thank you so much for making this website! It has been very useful and awesome. this contact form

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