Past winners Bishop and Lindine to battle at NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic
talented men’s line-up ever for mountain bike stage race
The NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic
(TSEpic) presented by Dirt Rag is attracting the best elite men’s field in its
history. A deep and talented field of
top riders from all over North America will compete during seven days of
mountain bike racing from May 25 to May 31, 2014 near State College,
Pennsylvania for a race many affectionately call "Singletrack Summer Camp”.
Two past winners, Justin Lindine (Backcountry.com)
and Jeremiah Bishop (Sho-Air/Cannondale), are the top favorites. Bishop won the first three editions of the
NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic and is undefeated in his appearances; however, he
was absent in 2013, when Lindine claimed the yellow winner’s jersey.
"My specialty is stage races and
100-mile races and after focusing on the Pro XCT series of cross country races
last year, racing the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic marks a return to my
endurance racing,” said Bishop, a former World Cup racer and national champion.
"The cool thing about the TSEpic is
that it’s so dynamic,” said Bishop. "There is a different character to each
stage. The prologue favors the power rider; the Coburn stage is fast and favors
those good at group tactics; and then there are the long, grinding, rocky
stages. Some stages are flowy and some
Back for the fourth time, Lindine
will focus on the general classification. "The NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic has come to be a cornerstone of my
summer race season. This year, it kicks
off the first of three week-long stage races I will be doing, including also
the BC Bike Race and the Breck Epic, so I'm excited to get things off on the
"What I'm looking forward to the
most for this year’s race is being back on the east coast enjoying some awesome
trails in good company,” said Lindine. "I moved to Utah last summer and while
the riding is great there, too, my heart will always be with the rooty, rocky
wet trails of back east. More than that,
I want to show that my overall win last year was no fluke...so hopefully I can
ride well throughout the week. Ultimately though, no matter what it's always a fun week.”
Drew Edsall (The Pro's Closet /
Stan's NoTubes Pro Mountain Bike Team), fifth in the 2013 race, will return to
the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic for the fifth time - he has competed in every
"I’m going to do my best to make it
a good one. This event is very well put on and a blast, which keeps me coming
back every year,” said Edsall, who is targeting a top placing in the general
classification. "I am most looking forward to stage 2, which is reversed this
year and has more singletrack added. That will make for a nice long and hard
day on Pennsylvania's epic singletrack. Going to bring the big guns out that
A few racers from abroad will be on
the start line for the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Among them are Peter Glassford (Trek Canada
Mountain Bike Team) from north of the border and German Ben Sonntag (Stan’s
NoTubes), who now resides in Durango, Colorado.
"I’m excited to be adding a
seven-day stage race to my schedule this year,” said Glassford, a hopeful
podium contender. "As my career evolves, I’m finding success and awesome
experiences in multiple types of events. I have done several seven-day and three-day events in Canada and also
the Leadville 100, so I hope to use those experiences in my first TSEpic. The racing is looking quite competitive which
will make it fast and interesting.”
Sonntag has done stages races
around the globe, but will be making his first appearance at the TSEpic. "The race has some pressure to fulfill all
the hype I’ve heard. Considering the
depth and talent, this could be the deepest field for a stage race in the US in
a while. It’s no secret that I want to
race for a top spot in the stages and the general classification. I hope to
arrive in great shape and have a solid, consistent week with no mishaps and
lots of smiles, and I’ll use the race to build a good foundation for the
upcoming cross country races later in June, July and August.”
Tristan Uhl (Team 787 Racing) will
be making his first-ever appearance at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic and is
targeting stage victories and a top-five overall placing.
"I'm hoping to beat the Texas heat
(no heat waves please!) and get in a good week of racing,” said Uhl. "With
cross country mountain bike nationals also taking place in Pennsylvania again
this year, I figured a week of racing around on similar terrain couldn't hurt
Rob Spreng (Rare Disease Cycling),
best known for his success in 100-miler mountain bike races, is a bit of a wild
card, and may surprise the favorites.
"I've been wanting to do the
NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic since it began, but all the pieces never fit
together until this year,” said Spreng. "Having not done the race, it's tough
to say what to expect. I hope to race strong every day that I'm there.”
Other top contenders include Kris
Sneddon (Kona), State College local Aaron Snyder (TSEpic.com/NoTubes), Mike
Broderick (Kenda NoTubes), Spencer Paxson (Kona) and Cole Oberman (Rare Disease
"The depth of the men’s field this
year is very exciting. It’s undoubtedly the most talented field we’ve seen in
all five years of the event,” said Snyder. "My goal for the week is to maintain
consistency and stay out of trouble, and feel stronger as we get through the
week. For 2014, nearly every stage has
been revamped and completely new, so I will be relying on local knowledge a bit
more than past years.
Former road racing pro Nick Waite
(ProTested Gear), a training buddy and long-time racing rival of Bishop’s, will
return to his mountain bike roots by lining up at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania
"I didn’t decide to do it. Jeremiah Bishop mentioned it, I started
thinking about a week on the bike, and the pieces came together,” said Waite,
who has competed in major road races like the Tour of California. "It’ll be the
showdown of my career racing Jeremiah. I
figure if I can beat him, I’ve got it covered!”
A few big name riders will be
competing either on multi-person teams in the seven-day TSEpic or as solo
racers in the three-day version of the race TS3. For example, US cyclo-cross national champion
Jeremy Powers and road pro Jeremy Durrin (Optum p/b Kelly Benefit Strategies)
will compete as part of an Epic Team; both are unable to participate in the
seven-day race due to wedding commitments forcing them to miss the first day,
but the Epic Team format allows riders to come and go during the week for just
these sorts of reasons. Whether for scheduling reasons, fitness, testing the
waters or just for the fun of the week, the Epic Team option opens up many
different possibilities for participation in TSEpic.
Five fast, young men will be racing
together on another Epic Team and while teams are scored separately from
individuals, all riders compete at the same time, and these under 25 riders may
well influence the race by mixing it up with the elites. Ranging from as far away as Austin, Texas and
Durango, Colorado, Payson McElveen, Cameron Dodge, Mike Sampson, Cody Phillips
and Levi Kurlander will represent ColtTrainingSystems.com.
Seasoned veterans Barry Wicks (Kona)
and Jeff Lenosky (Giant) will race as an individuals in the TS3, with Lenosky
coming in focused on the enduro competition over the three days.
Enduro bragging rights on the line
Several of the top men will also
contest the SRAM enduro sub-classification, among them, last year’s enduro
classification winner, Edsall.
"Last year, I fought hard for the
enduro classification. That was awesome!” said Edsall. "I plan to defend that
position this year.”
While defending overall champion
Lindine considers the general classification to be his number one priority, he
may also participate in the enduros. "We’ll see how things play out in the race, because I think I could be
competitive in the enduro, too. I can’t
wait for the enduro day this year though, now that I have full suspension bike
for the first time. It should be fun.”
Glassford said, "I’m most looking
forward to the enduro classification, but I’ll compete in anything that I can!”
Tristan Uhl and Jeff Lenosky are
two others looking forward to mixing it up in the enduro classification while
Aaron Snyder is eagerly anticipating the enduro-specific stage.
The NoTubesTrans-Sylvania Epic presented by Dirt Rag Magazine is made possible with the
generous support of BMC, Pactimo, Hammer Nutrition and Freeze Thaw Cycles.
For more information, visit OutdoorExperience.orgor TSEpic.com; find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TransSylvaniaEpic;
or follow us on Twitter @TransSylvania, #TSEpic, #TS3 and #TSEnduro.
To register for the NoTubes
Trans-Sylvania Epic seven-day race, visit https://ccnbikes.com/2014-trans-sylvania-mountain-bike-epic/.
To register for he NoTubes
Trans-Sylvania Epic three-day race, visit https://ccnbikes.com/2014-trans-sylvania-mountain-bike-3-day-epic/.
Stay tuned for live coverage updates
during the race and expanded video race coverage.