Vernon, BC July 15 2023
Women’s mountain bike race
The scream of a whistle.
The blast of an airhorn.
The wave of an official.
And it starts?
A race is more than the day.
It’s spans more than the distance between timing mats. It starts with a commitment, and just keeps going from there. Training miles, nutrition choices, excitement, nerves, stress, sleep… a race is made up of all of this.
Beyond the PR’s or leaderboard is true achievement. Did you take on a genuine challenge? Did you push yourself? Did you learn? Did you fail? Did you see it through? Did you show up for community a race is made up of all of this.
So sign up. Enter the race. Do the event. Join the relay. Run, ride, walk, whatever. Hold yourself accountable. Finish with a smile. I promise you, whatever your ‘race’ every moment, is worthwhile… #livbombshellenuro
After 2 years of uncertainty the Bombshell enduro was finally able to commence! After competing in the inaugural race in 2019, I knew I had to be back for 2022.
The day started with an early 6am wake up to be up at Silverstar for registration at 7:30. As soon as I rolled up to the main parking lot I could hear tunes bumping and knew the vibes were going to be high. After I registered, some lovely volunteers gave me a timing chip and I was on my way.
A friend and I started climbing up the Silver Shack trail to get to the first stage, which started at the top on Shazam. As we reached the first stage, we were greeted by some more volunteers running the aid station who were cheering and dancing as we reached the top. I had a piece of watermelon and some candy, and was ready to roll.
I dropped in the first stage which was the top of Shazam and the lower portion of Flow. Shazam is fast and flowy which was a perfect intro for the rest of the day. The berms were fast and I was feeling good, trying to not overshoot the jumps but maintaining speed.I reached the bottom of the section and was met by volunteers cheering me on as I pedalled my brains out on the road that led me to the bottom of Flow. Although it’s in the name, Flow is definitely not flowy, the exact opposite actually. Nonetheless, I was able to squeeze my way through the tight trees while maintaining my speed and staying consistent through the chunky rocks and roots.
Once I rolled over the timing mat at the bottom of the stage, I continued down the trail to the bottom of the chairlift where we loaded up to reach stage 2. Stage 2 consisted of the top portion of Flow and the lower portion of Double Dog. The top of Flow is probably the most technical downhill of the race with many tight sections and a few rocky chutes, which definitely claimed a few racers during the day. Luckily I was able to ride it clean enough and continued my way down to the Double Dog section. Double Dog happens to be my favourite trail at the park so I was stoked to be able to race it. I made my way through the chunky tech sections, fast corners and wooden features as smooth as I could and finished the stage with a smile on my face.
I loaded up the chairlift for the second time and made my way to stages 3 and 4 which were located just a short traverse away at the Sovereign Lake Nordic Centre. Stage 3, aka the Raw Bones trail, was by far the hardest stage, as it consisted of many punchy uphill sections, and happened to be the only trail in the race I had not ridden before. I dropped in then immediately was met with an uphill rock garden. Being unprepared for the trail, I was in too hard of a gear to make it up the rock garden while simultaneously was unable to unclip from my pedals, resulting in a small crash. That being said, once I could conclude that my bike was okay, I hopped right back on and started pedalling up the next section to make up for lost time. I bombed through the finish of the stage, absolutley gassed after pedaling my brains out on the rest of the trail. Not my cleanest work but made it through in one piece.
After I rode down from stage 3, still in one piece, I was met with the fiesta aid station where I was welcomed by a group of awesome volunteers, dancing, handing out margaritas, water, and keeping everyone fed with whatever we needed. I refuelled there for a couple minutes then decided it was time for the next stage.
Stage 4 was made up of 2 trails; Rock is the New Berm, and Threads. This stage was made of pretty much every type of the terrain the Okanagan is known for; tight and chunky tech, flow, exposed rock slabs and some fun rolls and side hits. I was definitely feeling the most fatigued on this trail as it was long with lots of traversing where you needed to pedal. When I got to the bottom I was met by some volunteers and other riders cheering me on, which boosted my morale.
Once I was feeling ready, I started to make my way towards the last climb that led to stage 5. The climb was made more enjoyable as we passed the fiesta aid station again.
Stage 5 consisted of the Outer Limits trail, which was an awesome way to finish off the event. This trail is fast and fun with tight corners between trees to keep you on your toes. By the end of the stage I could barely hold onto my bars and was just barreling down the last shoot hoping for the best, but as soon as I crossed the last timing mat I felt relief and was super stoked.
All in all, the day went awesome for me and I was lucky to take home the best time of the day. The event was awesome and you could tell the organizers, Deana and Mel, put in so much work for us to have such a great time. Thanks so much to the volunteers for making it happen and to Silverstar for hosting, until next year!
No Pain, No Gain
Course Details and Schedule
Will be released closer to race date 2023
So what’s an Enduro??
Great question, glad you asked. It is a multiple stage race where you climb to the top of the stage and are timed on the descents. The climbing part is not timed! You can relax, pace yourself, walk if you want. Once you are at the top of the stage it’s race on! For the 2023 enduro you can expect 4-6 stages covering somewhere between 20-30km.3How is the timing going to work for this race?
Well, you will get a fancy bracelet to wear on your wrist. You ride through the designated start and finish areas which are clearly labeled. Your time starts and stops automatically and will be uploaded in real time at www.zone4.com/results. Your times on each stage are totaled up for an overall time which will determine what place you finish. Pretty straight forward.
How do does the seeding work?
Generally Enduro races have wave start times where racers are broken up into groups depending on how serious or relaxed you want to be. The 2023 enduro may look a little different so we ensure we are adhering to all Provincial COVID protocols.
On the trail you are encouraged to self-seed. What does that mean? It means you turn around and ask the ladies behind you, “are you fast?” or “are you going to really race this stage”. If yes, let those ladies go ahead of you. Course marshals will be getting racers to drop-in in 30 second intervals, but if you like to chase your buddy you can drop in one right after one another. If you are really worried about the person behind you catching you, you can ask for a little more time. Which leads to the next section.
To pass and be passed?
This is part of Enduro racing so don’t be freaked out by it. There are obviously better ways then others to do this and we strongly encourage you to be respectful and calm when doing it. So this is how it goes down. If racer A is catching up to racer B on the trail, racer A says “racer” or “rider”. Racer B carries on until there is a safe place to pull over and does so. Racer A says “thank you!” and racer B says “get it girl!” Simple.
Is it cool to walk my bike down tricky sections?
Absolutely. 100% okay. If there are some sections of trail you don’t think you can ride, do not let this deter you from doing the race. All trickier sections of trail will be flagged. If you aren’t feeling it, by all means walk! No need to be a hero. Way better to lose a few seconds getting off your bike then to break yourself.
Are refunds available?
We typically do not refund, however we can assist you with transferring your registration to someone on the waitlist. In the unlikely event of a COVID shut down, we will be giving refunds in that scenario only.
what They’re Saying
Volunteers stayed tuned for opportunities to help out Feb 1, 2023. Volunteer perks will include breakfast and lunch, beverages and more.
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