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