From Scott Countryman – The first enduro race of 2015. It is a very important race for a lot of reasons. You get a chance to test yourself and to see how your competitors have come along after a winter of training. A good result means you are on track for the race season but a poor result is a real kick in the butt to get in shape.

This weekend I raced the Big Bear Shootout, part of the Kenda CUp West series. I’ve been training harder and more efficiently than ever before thanks to my new coach Ryan Geiger. I’ve spent all winter honing my skills and perfecting my mental game. Up until now, I have not had a chance to gauge my training to see how much I have improved.

After pre-riding the three stages the day before the race, I was not very confident in myself. The first two stages had significant climbing, very little tech, and a lot of dry blown out flat corners. The third stage had some sweet ripping fast rocky sections but still had quite a bit of pedaling. These are not race courses that suite my style.

Race day morning I am psyching my self up; “Give it your best. Whatever the result, this is great training. Just ride smooth, smart and have fun.” Each stage went great and I didn’t make any mistakes, I made my efforts in the right places and at the right times, I rode smooth, and I had a blast! No results were posted until everyone had finished all three stages and I really had no clue how I had done. Everything went well but there were a lot of fast pro’s racing, some of which were locals that new the trails.

After a cool down lap in the bike park, I found the results posted by the event tents with a bunch of people crowded around. Looking over a few shoulders, I spot what looks like my name at the top of the list. Could that be right? I push my way to the front for a closer look and there it was; my name a the top of the pro category results. SO STOKED! I won the race!

It may have not been a big event, but the competition was real and I was at odds. To win my first race of the 2015 season was amazing! I am on the right track but now I want to train harder.

Confidence up, I am more amped than ever before to race this season. Thanks Kona, and everyone else, for all the awesome support; it means a lot to me!

Wish me luck. Cheers!