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Shred down the Canyon….

Guys, I’m SOOOO Excited to announce that I’m partnering with Canyon Bikes!

As you know, Canyon is new to the USA and I’m so thrilled to be working with them to share how awesome their bikes are and get more people shredding on them!

For 2018 I’m going to be racing the Strive 8.0, this bike is INCREDIBLE!!!!! I have been doing some testing on this steed and I can’t wait to take it to the big kid playground!

For the suspension, I’m back on my favorite trusty Fox Factory Float DPX2 with 160 travel and a Fox Float 36 up front with 170 travel. Now here comes the BEST part, this bike has the Shapeshifter….this thing is a game changer. With a flick of the switch, I can have a super solid “XC” like climbing experience where the bike is in a more comfortable position. When I lock out the rear suspension with the Shapeshifter engaged, this bike doesn’t move at all, it’s like I’m climbing with my hard tail and it’s AWESOME!! Then when I get to the down hill, I just switch the shapeshifter off and I am in full downhill mode and it’s so cush!

I can’t wait to race this beast, I’m still working on a name for her, so stay tuned!

My nephew is so excited for me!!

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Thank you Marin!

To my Marin Family – a heartfelt thank you for the last 3 years of fun! It has been a truly incredible experience to be a part of your team and a journey that I will not soon forget. I can’t thank you enough for all of the generous support you provided – and staying committed to me during the good times and tough ones too.

From the first time I got on the Attack Trail in Santa Cruz, I knew that bike was something special. It helped improve my confidence knowing that as long as I was in the right position, the bike would get me down just about anything! In addition to helping me grow as a rider, it took me to many podiums in several states and lots of unforgettable adventures. As we turn the page going forward, I will always value the friendships made along the way.

Thank you so much for the support!

Cheers to new adventures!

Raaawr,

Bri

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Mammoth Mountain | Kamikaze bike games pre race fun!!

This last weekend we had a truck full of 5 people, bikes and gear for 3 incredible days at Mammoth Mountain. The crew this weekend was myself, Maddie, Alexandra, Soda, Brian, Rick and Zach. We then had some additions that didn’t stay with us, but came to shred, SeanSolo who left his house at 2am rode all day and then drove back home and got there at 11:30pm!!! Essence and Nathan joined us for two days of fun as well as Jesse aka Endurobro!

We started off day one by doing a warm up on velocity….might not have been the best warm up run! LOL. We then met up with locals Matt Guntert and Gabe Taylor who gave us a preview of the new race course for this year. Some of the trails are the same awesome ones we have ridden in the past, but there are two new kickass stages that are going to be so rowdy!!!

We all scoped out lines on the rock garden on DC10 for a bit, that one is tricky for sure!! It’s super steep and rocky and you either have the chunky right line or the sketch left line with a drop at the end. The trick on that one is that the Mammoth kitty litter is so deep you can’t really control where you want to go! None of us ladies tried it, we all looked at it too long so we decided to come back to it the next day. We then did a lady train the rest of the way down DC10, it was awesome!

We also rode the snow pile that I was eyeing every time we went up the gondola. That shit was slicker than it looks, we were all dying laughing as we slid down the slab! I learned that Jesse is so much fun to ride with, he is so funny and animated it just makes the experience that much more entertaining!

It was Alexandra’s birthday on Saturday, little did she know that we contacted her parents to see what her favorite bday cake was. Maddie and I worked on this triple chocolate Kahlua cake all afternoon…we had lots of technical difficulties to say the least. LOL but she was super surprised, which was the plan!!! 🙂

Day 2 we shredded more on every trail and just had way too much fun! We decided to go over to DC10 to try the rock garden. I scoped out a new line that wasn’t there the day before and I pointed it out to the girls. Essence was the first to try it and she totally nailed it!! So Alexandra went next and she nailed it as well. I thought…well shit…I guess I have to try it now too. It was super sketch and I didn’t really hit the line I wanted on the drop, but I made it anyway!! It was so awesome cheering each other on! Soda screamed louder than I did when I went off the drop, it was pretty funny!

On our last run, all of the boys and girls went together on Bullet to scope out some lines. It was probably the most fun run of the day as the guys showed us the lines and all of us ladies followed, the cheering from everyone was INCREDIBLE!!! We are so lucky to have such awesome friends!

After we were done shredding we headed over to the infamous Wild Willey’s hot springs. There were more people than I have ever seen out there before! It was fun to take everyone out there since it’s a fun tourist spot to go. After that all of the ladies did some Arbonne face masks, we even got Brian to play too!! We looked like Oompa Loompas!

On Monday, it was our last day, we all headed to the top of the Gondola and ended up taking off in two different directions. Alexandra and I ended up shredding as many laps, laps, laps that we could. I had a couple of silly crashes that had my laughing hysterically, Alexandra was probably wondering what the heck was wrong with me. LOL

We then tired to ride the snow bank again which was a total failure!!!

The drive home was one of the fastest ever since we were on such a high from the fun weekend we were just telling stories and laughing the whole way! Rick and Brian said that one of the most fun parts of the weekend was watching us girls tackle the gnar sections and nail them! We thought so too!!! I can’t wait for the Kamikaze games next weekend, it’s going to be another epic week!! If you haven’t registered yet, you definitely should!

 

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The Comeback

As many of you may now know by now, this year has plagued me with the Epstein Barr virus, aka Mono. It was a rough beginning of the year trying to figure out what was wrong with me and why I was so sick.

For those that aren’t familiar with Epstein Barr, it’s a very difficult virus to get diagnosed with and then once you do, there isn’t anything you can take to get better. You just have to REST!!! You can have flu like symptoms, but most of all you are extremely exhausted. I had zero energy and swollen glands in my neck that looked like marbles poking out!  My doctors told me no riding for at least 8 weeks!

Fontana

CES Fontana | I have never been more excited to finish a race! I didn’t feel good at all!

No riding for at least 8 weeks, this was a huge blow. I had only done one CES race, Fontana, which I barely finished (I was on antibiotics racing and later learned I shouldn’t have even been on my bike) and then Sea Otter Classic. SOC was a bit better than Fontana, but not by much. Me being off my bike basically meant I wasn’t going to be able to race much this season, if at all. I absolutely love racing and I LOVE my Marin Bikes even more because they make it so fun and easy to do well on! Knowing that I wouldn’t be able to race at my two favorite local races, Battle Born and Toro Park, I started off by setting a goal to possibly race at China Peak. As time went on I realized that wasn’t going to happen, I was just too tired and I had only been doing walks/hikes after a few weeks of nothing. China Peak isn’t a race that you want to try and jump into, it’s pretty technical, plus it’s a lot of pedaling and in past years been VERY HOT! I decided to make a more realistic goal and set my first race back to be the Northstar enduro.

China Peak 2015

China Peak 2015

Since I couldn’t ride, it was time for some new low effort activities. I started taking walks/hikes in some of our local parks and I also started Paddleboarding. Paddleboarding has been great because it doesn’t take a ton of effort (well for my recovery purposes anyway) and I could work on my balance!

Point Lobos Park with the girls, Kelsey and Autumn

Point Lobos Park with the girls, Kelsey and Autumn

 

Paddleboarding in Pacific Grove

Paddleboarding in Pacific Grove

 

Headstands!

Headstands!

My happy place, Pyramid Lake!

My happy place, Pyramid Lake!

Since I still had time off from work for some of these races, I kept that time off and started heading to the mountains to practice at Northstar. N* is a challenging course just like China Peak, there are lots of rocks, roots and drops! I knew my fitness probably wouldn’t be back for the race, but I could at least get comfortable riding the techy trails. I went up to N* and rode about 6 times before the race, while I wasn’t fast, I was doing things that I wasn’t comfortable doing in the past. Some of my weaknesses are jumps and drops, so I just worked on those every time I was up there and it helped a LOT! I was getting better and feeling more comfortable than I have ever felt before with being in the air!

Northstar Fun

Northstar Fun

I realized that my goal for N* was going to be A – to finish the race (It’s a 2 day race and would be more riding then I had done in 4 months!) and B – to stay on my bike. I figured this was a realistic goal! So Friday, practice day, before the race I went out to take one last look at the trails before the race.  I was SOOOO happy to see so many of my friends and to just be back on the bike with them. So many people were so stoked for me too, which was a bonus. Turns out folks like to see me out there. 🙂

I don’t think people really understood that just because I was racing didn’t mean that I was back to my race shape. It takes time, and I’m doing everything I can to get back to where I know I can and should be! So it was pretty funny when the girls kept saying, Bri, you go in front of me….no I’m good! I just hung out in the back and that was absolutely fine with me! I was just so happy to be there.

Day one was a fairly easy trail day, so I knew staying on the bike would be pretty easy! I pretty much made it to the top of each stage just in time for my start times, usually I am one of the faster pedalers to each of the stages because of my xc background, but this day I was the turtle!!  I think we did about 3k of climbing and were on our bikes for a few hours, I was ready to head home and rest! As soon as I got home I took a nap, I was so exhausted!!

Day 2 was the more technical trail day so I knew staying on the bike was going to be a bit more challenging especially with my fatigue from the day before. We started with Gypsy which is my favorite trail out there and then headed to Sticks and Stones and Karpiel. I nailed all of the jumps/drops I had been working on and I made it down each of the stages without crashing! It was a huge success!! That was the biggest two days of riding I had done since the beginning of the year. While I finished at the end of the pack, I was ok with that, because I know I am getting back to shape and making my way back to where I was pre Epstein Barr!

Northstar 2016 Enduro

Northstar 2016 Enduro

 

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Photo credit: Scott @ Called to Creation

I’m getting better every day, I still really have to pay attention to my energy levels and take naps when I feel tired so I don’t over do it. Relapses can happen, so it’s important for me to really listen to my body.

I just took a trip to Mammoth this last weekend and had a blast, although it WAS FREEZING!! I’m really looking forward to racing the last CES race up there in two weeks and I’m REALLY looking forward to next year. I’m ready for a fresh start and a killer 2017 Season!

Slowest, funniest tipover of my life!

Slowest, funniest tip over of my life!

Special thanks to all of my sponsors for making all of this possible! Marin Bikes, Rabobank, Wilderness Trail Bikes, KMC Chain, E13 Components, Skratch Labs, G-form, Smith Optics, Sweet Protection, Grifall Chiropractic and Glace Cryotherapy.

Stay tuned for more updates from the Mammoth Race!

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