Kona racers had a strong showing this weekend at the 4th stop of the California Enduro Series at China Peak. China Peak is not only the most recent stop of the overall series, but the first race of the much anticipated “Golden Tour” which consists of three of the gnarlier venues in California: China Peak, Mammoth, and North Star. All three venues boast fast, loose, and rocky conditions, but China Peak certainly takes the crown for unpredictable conditions that challenge riders throughout the day. Elevation, square edged granite, and soil that just never seems to give much support, all conspire to foul race day plans. Kona racers Ryan Gardner and Derek Teel of the Norcal Cooperative both braved the tough conditions aboard their Process of choice, Ryan opted for the heavy hitting Process 153 while Derek made use of the nimble Process 134. Both riders had solid runs throughout the day with Derek putting in solid top five results on the first three stages. Ryan was a bit late to the party, but made up some serious time on the downhill oriented 4th stage, taking second on the stage, and securing third overall on the day. Derek was able to snag his second podium spot of the year and took 5th.
The Kona women were also out in full force with both Ali Osgood and Arianna Altier ripping their Process 153s through four demanding stages. Both Ali and Arianna are making the tough move from DH to Enduro and are already podium threats after just a few races. Both ladies had solid runs but found themselves just off the podium with Arianna in 6th and Ali in 7th. Expect to see them both gaining positions as they get this whole enduroing thing figured out.
In addition to the Pro men and Women, perennial Kona shredder Dave “the doctor” Phreaner dominated the 50+ expert category by over half a minute aboard his trusty Process 153. Dave leveraged his experience smashing rocks in Santa Barbara to wrangle a commanding win that rivaled the times of riders half his age!
The California Enduro Series leaves the dry and dusty Sierra’s for the fast, flowy, loamy, goodness of Ashland Oregon in two weeks so stay tuned for more great riding and results!