Trans-Sylvania Mountain Bike EPIC- Stage Four

May 26th, 2019

Written by: Jen & Anthony Toops

Stage 4 of the 2019 TSE Epic once again started from the scout camp, after yesterdays remote location.  The Tussey mountain stage is notorious for its near non-stop technical rock gardens.  This is a stage where mechanical problems can make or break your race.  Line choice is crucial to keeping your tires healthy and drive train in one piece.  The 3,274ft of climbing in 32.9 rough miles was going to be a test.

Single-speeder Joe Worboy working his way through the rocks

Men’s Open

The lead pack up the tough climb on Tussey

Some drama just after the start would see Bryan Lewis playing catch up from a flat front tire after the first double track descent.  He was able to plug it quickly, but would enter the climb up the Tussey single track in around 8th position.  Lewis would end up catching the lead duo of Bishop and Werner about half way through the Tussey ridge line. 

Bishop leading stage 4 through one of many technical rock gardens

The lead pack focused on riding smooth through the rock gardens, avoiding any problems.  Lewis and Bishop would end up getting a gap on the chasing Werner going back up another Tussey climb.  These two would ride together until a tough single track climb where Bryan Lewis would attack and cross the line just 15 seconds ahead with a time of 2:08:36, Bishop was 2nd at 2:08:51, and Kerry Werner 3rd at 2:13:00

Stage 4 results: 1st Bryan Lewis, 2nd Jeremiah Bishop, 3rd Kerry Werner

Women’s Open

The general classification was tested on today’s stage with a new winner and a new face on the podium.  The top three would start the day riding together but soon Britt Mason would open a gap on the chasing pack. 

Britt Mason powering up a rocky climb

Near the 3 bridges trail section, Marlee Dixon would pass Mason for first place.  Mason was suffering from a slow tire leak which she would have to deal with before finishing the day.  Dixon would hold that lead to the finish and gain back 3:30 on GC with a time of 2:40:31.  Britt Mason managed to hang on with the mechanical issues for 2nd at 2:44:01. 

Marlee Dixon looking smooth through the rocks.

Amelia Capuano had a solid ride in the difficult trails of Tussey to grab her first podium spot in 3rd at 2:44:53.  Julia Thumel would finish just a few minutes back in 4th at 2:47:43.

Amelia Capuano gets her first podium spot taking third for stage 4
Stage 4 results: 1st Marlee Dixon, 2nd Britt Mason, 3rd Amelia Capuano

For stage four results CLICK HERE

Photo credit: @iconmediaasheville & @bruceBuckley

Trans-Sylvania Mountain Bike EPIC- Stage Three

May 25th, 2019

Written by Jen & Anthony Toops

Race director Ryan Fulton leads out the race in R.B. Winter State Park.

Stage 3 had racers traveling to nearby R.B Winter state park for a fast 30.4 mile day with 2,727 ft of climbing.  This would be the only stage not starting from the scout camp.  Perfect weather and trail conditions made for a fast day.  After yesterdays queen stage, this would be an easier day for racers, but a harder day to make up precious GC seconds. This was also the start of the three day race option.

Miki Razo navigating the mossy east coast rocks

Open Men

With the fast conditions today, the leaders would end up staying together for almost the entire stage.  Brian Lewis was determined to get some time back on Bishop and would make a few attacks throughout the stage, but nothing would stick. 

Jeremiah Bishop (Team Topeak) with Bryan Lewis (Cutaway) holding his wheel.

A few miles out from the finish is a 2 mile climb where the elastic would finally snap and Lewis was able to make the gap stick, crossing the line to gain back 40sec on GC with a time of 2:06:40.  Bishop would finish 2nd at 2:07:20.  Werner was 3rd with a time of 2:09:38.  This was the GC order as well after 3 stages of racing.

Kerry Werner (Kona/Maxxis)
Stage 3 Results: 1st Bryan Lewis, 2nd Jeremiah Bishop, 3rd Kerry Werner

Open Women

The news of the day would be that overall leader, Carla Williams, would not take the start line due to the injuries she sustained on stage 2.  This would mean a shift in the overall with Britt Mason taking the leaders jersey going in to the day. 

Britt Mason (Joe’s Bike Shop)

The racing would be close all day with only a few minutes separating the top three.  Mason lead at the start with Marlee Dixon and Julia Thumel hot on her heels.  All three were within site of each other for most of the stage.

Julia Thumel (Race Pace Bicycles)

  Mason would end up holding her lead to the line with a time of 2:35:37.  Dixon and Thumel would trade places about 10 miles from the finish with Thumel taking 2nd in 2:36:33, and Dixon 3rd at 2:38:04.  With Williams out, the GC standings are Britt Mason 1st, Marlee Dixon 2nd, and Julia Thumel 3rd. 

Marlee Dixon (Pearl Izumi/Pivot Cycles)
Stage 3 results: 1st Britt Mason, 2nd Julia Thumel, 3rd Marlee Dixon

For stage three results CLICK HERE

Stage 3 Highlights from Dirtwire TV

Photo credit: @iconmediaasheville & @bruceBuckley

Trans-Sylvania Mountain Bike EPIC- Stage Two

Written by: Marlee Dixon & Jen Toops

May 24, 2019

Coopers Gap was Stage two of the Trans-Sylvania Mountain Bike Epic and was the biggest day of the week with thirty-five miles and about five thousand feet of elevation gain. The day started on the road as racers left camp and headed into Rothrock state forest. The course included some road/gravel sections and the dreaded still house climb but was mostly all single track with trails including: linger valley, peep and deer tick. Some exhilarating descends on the course included: long mountain, sassafras and no name. It was a beautiful warm sunny day for a long day on the bike.

Emily Hairfield and Gordon Wadsworth in the Duo Category

Men’s Open

Jeremiah Bishop (Team Topeak) isn’t afraid of getting muddy on the sloppy decent.

Bryan Lewis (Cutaway) charged hard at the start of stage two and Jeremiah Bishop (Team Topeak) was able to hold his wheel while Kerry Werner (Kona/Maxxis) fell off the lead group. After Bishop had to stop for a stick in his spokes he thought he had been dropped by Lewis on a downhill. Unfortunately Lewis took a wrong turn and bishop was able to make a break away before going into Deer Tick trail.

Bishop took the stage 2 win in a time of 2:54:21. Bishop goes into Stage 3 with around a 90 second lead in the GC. Lewis finished the stage in 2:55:57 and Kerry Werner third 3:05:43 and both holding their positions in the GC.

Women’s Open

All smiles from Britt Mason (Joes Bike Shop)

In the womens race, Carla Williams (CarboRocket) had a lead of over ten minutes starting stage two. After an unfortunate wrong turn and a crash, she finished the stage in second with a time of 3:54:08; still holding on to the GC lead.

After an unfortunate wrong turn, Williams finishes stage two in second but still holds onto lead in the GC.

Britt Mason (Joes Bike Shop) rallied back after her rough start on day one and made up some time on the technical downhills. She took the stage win finishing in 3:49:33 and moving into 2nd in the GC. Marlee Dixon (Pearl izumi/ Pivot Cycles) finished the day in 3rd in 3:57:01. Dixon moves into 3rd in the GC.

Stage two highlights from Dirtwire TV

For Stage two results CLICK HERE

Photo credit: @iconmediaasheville & @bruceBuckley

Stage 5 Trans-Sylvania Epic

Werner and Armstrong win NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic titles

Broken handlebar sidelines former women’s leader and defending champion Barclay

 

The final stage of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic brought thrills and spills on a tough, rocky course made more difficult with a downpour in the middle of the day. Battles for the overall general classification (GC) wins didn’t go quite as planned.

Elite men

Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling) soloed to win the final stage of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic on his way to claiming the overall victory. A much anticipated battle up the final climb between Werner and defending champion and eventual runner-up Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek) never materialized after Lindine flatted early in the day.

The peloton rolls out for the fifth and final time at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. The rain held off for the start, but a 45-minute deluge drenched racers and trails mid-stage, making the rocks even more challenging than usual.

The peloton rolls out for the fifth and final time at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. The rain held off for the start, but a 45-minute deluge drenched racers and trails mid-stage, making the rocks even more challenging than usual.

“It was unfortunate that Justin flatted. I’m not pumped to win that way, but at the same time that’s racing and I’ll take it,” said Werner. “This whole week has been great – it’s a super organized event with great volunteers. Growing up in another part of Pennsylvania, I always wanted to do this race, so it’s special to win. It’s my first time riding here, and I already want to come back and ride more of these trails.”

A motivated Lindine started the day within striking distance of Werner’s overall time and set a fast pace up the first climb, dropping everyone except his rival.

“I felt good today and was having fun on the trails,” said Lindine, “but I had some bad luck. I was keeping the pressure on Kerry and charged into the first enduro section, but flatted. When I went to install my spare tube, it had a hole… maybe from being under my seat for so long. I ran down the enduro segment trying to borrow a tube, but mostly everyone here in this race is on 29ers, and I’m on a 27.5”, so it took awhile to get one.”

State College, Pennsylvania local Aaron Albright (NoTubes Trans- Sylvania Epic) cruises on his home trails at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.

State College, Pennsylvania local Aaron Albright (NoTubes Trans- Sylvania Epic) cruises on his home trails at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.

Racers started the day on trails with wet, slippery rocks, then just as they were starting to dry mid-stage, a thunderstorm dumped heavy rain for 45 minutes. The already damp trails became even slicker.

At the front alone, Werner alternated between struggling and finding his groove. On the final enduro section, he laid it over three times. “They weren’t serious crashes, but I put my bar into the bench cut side of the hill, and then those wooden bridges at the bottom were so sketchy. I came into the first bridge as straight as I could, not braking, and I still started to two-wheel drift, so I walked the second bridge. I didn’t want to take risks at that point.”

Pau Zamora (Buff Pro Cycling) chased on his own in second place until Dan Timmerman (Riverside Racing) caught him. In the midst of the cyclocross off-season, Timmerman rode himself into fine form during the course of the week and was feeling great by the final stage. However, Zamora was hungry to defend his third spot on the podium, and rode away from Timmerman on the final climb for second on the day and third overall.

Lindine chased his way back up into fourth place on the day, managing to save his second spot in the GC.

“I think some of those trails ride better when they’re wet,” said Lindine. “I made it a game to catch as many people as I could. I’d roll into the technical sections but would stay loose, so I’d just ride into wherever I was supposed to go. You have to be in the right zone, and I was enjoying today.”

Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team) again proved himself to be the best enduro rider on the day and secured the overall enduro win. “I lost the enduro classification last year on the final stage, but this time I had two years of experience and came knowing what I needed to do. I also got lucky as this race will cause some issues for everyone – no matter what their experience.”

Cory Rimmer (Kona / Nox Composites / Provision Sports Medicine) pops over a log in the final stage of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.

Cory Rimmer (Kona / Nox Composites / Provision Sports Medicine) pops over a log in the final stage of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.

Phillips spent the day riding in short shorts and a cut-off T-shirt with an American flag after having successfully challenged his followers to raise a certain amount of money for the new Pennsylvania Interscholastic Cycling League. “I was part of a group raising money PA high school cycling, and I wasn’t doing very well,” said Phillips. “I’m a competitive person and was pissed that I was getting beat by the others, so I came up with some schemes to get people to donate more money. I raised at least $1,300. I’m not good at math on day 5 and haven’t added it all up yet, but it was cool to raise the money for the kids. I wouldn’t be where I am today without high school cycling.”

Stage 5 Brief Results

  1. Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling)
  2. Pau Zamora (Buff Pro Cycling)
  3. Dan Timmerman (Riverside Racing)

Final General Classification

  1. Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling)
  2. Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek)
  3. Pau Zamora (Buff Pro Cycling)

 

Enduro Stage 5 Brief Results

  1. Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team)
  2. Aaron Albright (NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic)
  3. Damian Gonzalez (Michael David Winery)

Final Enduro Classification

  1. Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team)
  2. Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling)
  3. Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek)

Race leader Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) was still smiling at this point in the final stage of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic; however, that would change later in the day. She broke her handlebar just after the second aid station and dropped out of the race.

Race leader Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) was still smiling at this point in the final stage of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic; however, that would change later in the day. She broke her handlebar just after the second aid station and dropped out of the race.

Elite women

The battle for the top podium spot came down to the last day, but not in the expected way. Last year’s winner and this year’s favorite, Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team), suffered a devastating mechanical and had to drop out of the race.

Selene Yeager (Emmaus Bad Decisions), a past GC winner racing on a team this year, saw Barclay stranded in the rocks along the way. “Vicki jumped into a train of guys, and I thought, ‘There she goes.’ Then I went into a rocky section and she was just standing there. It was bad – her handlebar had snapped off in her hand. But at least she didn’t crash.”

That left Kaysee Armstrong (Liv), who was sitting in second place overall after yesterday’s stage 4, to take the win if she could. But this was not a foregone conclusion. “I felt tired,” said Armstrong. “Bryna [Blanchard, Windham Mountain Sports] was climbing so fast. I was feeling the fatigue through the rocks. But the enduros were fun, and I tried to be happy through them. Today was about surviving.” Armstrong managed to not only do that, but also to claim her second stage win of the week, the overall race title and second place in the enduro classification.

Blanchard, too, was feeling the cumulative effects of the week’s racing. “I did not feel good,” she said. “Yesterday was like a cross country race – it was so fast, and I didn’t recover. My heart rate was in the toilet, and I was tired. It was survival: keep moving, don’t stop pedaling. I wasn’t climbing nearly as well as I had been. I was happy I got through it.” Blanchard persevered to earn second on the day and in the general classification.

Yeager had an unexpectedly good day and was the first woman across the line. “I felt good on the climbs. I went into a little bit of a cave on all the chunky stuff, but I drew on all the stage races I’ve done, and kept thinking, ‘Just pedal your bike.’ It’s been a bittersweet week because I raced on a team, but I have such good fitness right now. I wish I had raced solo, but to know that you can perform well without all the pressure that you put on yourself is enlightening.”

Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes) crushed the women’s enduro all week long at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic, winning the enduro classification.

Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes) crushed the women’s enduro all week long at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic, winning the enduro classification.

Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes) ripped down some of the scariest enduro sections yet to take the win and secure victory in the enduro classification. She had begun the week as a GC contender, but quickly changed tactics. “I gave stage racing a go on the first day, and I rode a hardtail, but I got completely beat up on it,” she said. “So I swapped over to the enduro bike and focused on enduro. I can’t go for the GC on that bike because it weighs a ton.”

Bichard typically races enduro, but enjoyed the different take on it and may come back for a crack at the GC next year. “I loved the course with so much singletrack – really techy, super rocky. We don’t often do such big days in enduro racing, but I like the long cross country loop, and I love a big day out. Maybe I’ll come back on a smaller travel bike and do a bit more focused training.”

Stage 5 Brief Results

  1. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  2. Bryna Blanchard (Windham Mountain Outfitters)
  3. Kaarin Tae (Bike Monkey Cycling)

Final General Classification

  1. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  2. Bryna Blanchard (Windham Mountain Outfitters)
  3. Kaarin Tae (Bike Monkey Cycling)

Enduro Stage 5 Brief Results

  1. Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes)
  2. Kimberley Quinlan (Bicycle Express Racing)
  3. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)

Final Enduro Classification

  1. Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes)
  2. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  3. Kimberley Quinlan (Bicycle Express Racing)

The Trails

Always a favorite among singletrack lovers, the Cooper’s Gap stage was plenty long at 34.5 miles and chock full of singletrack and climbing (5,466 feet). New for 2016, the stage started remotely from Greenwood Furnace State Park and finished back at the Boy Scout Camp that serves as race headquarters. The stage had four separate Julbo/EVOC enduro segments of tight, technical Pennsylvania singletrack. The route finished with the climb up Stillhouse Hollow, a notoriously steep ascent also featured in the Wilderness 101.

Thanks to our sponsors

The NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic is made possible with the generous support of great partners like Julbo, Central PA Tourism, Lupine, Purple Lizard, SRAM, Kona, NUUN, Freeze Thaw Cycles, EVOC and more!

Tran-Sylvania Epic Stage 4

Stage 4 win boosts Werner into leader’s spot at NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic

Armstrong claims women’s stage victory while Barclay defends overall lead

TRANS-SYLVANIA, PA (June 2, 2016) – Stage 4 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic was a wet and wild ride at R.B. Winter State Park, a mainstay of the event with some new trails and more miles added for this edition. A steady rain through most of the day encouraged some riders and hindered others.

Elite men

With its high speeds, smoother trails and wet weather, stage 4 turned into a more tactical battle for the top men. Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling) raced his way into the lead of the general classification by virtue of winning the stage and finishing as the top enduro rider on the day. Previous leader Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek) dropped to second overall after finishing second in the stage and third in the enduro.

Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek) started stage 4 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic as race leader, but ended it in second place on both the stage and in the GC after a challenging day. The men’s race proved to be extremely tactical with three of the favorites battling it out for most of the stage.

Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek) started stage 4 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic as race leader, but ended it in second place on both the stage and in the GC after a challenging day. The men’s race proved to be extremely tactical with three of the favorites battling it out for most of the stage.

Previous third overall racer Adria Noguera Soldevila (Buff Pro Team) initially led a group of four top favorites, including his teammate Pau Zamora, Werner and Lindine. However, an unfortunate flat after the first enduro section would eventually cost Soldevila more than 30 minutes on the stage.

That left a highly motivated Zamora with Werner and Lindine. “I often was at the front so I could make up time on the other riders and get a top-three today,” said Zamora.

Werner was happy for the extra company up front. “Pau was being a trooper and taking good pulls with us. He wasn’t the best descender although he’d get in front for some of the enduro segments,” said Werner. “I think his motive was to slow us down so we wouldn’t get away from him.”

Cyclocross pro racer Dan Timmerman (Riverside Racing) is no slouch when it comes to mountain biking. He’s been mixing it up among the top five of the solo men at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic, and sits in fourth overall after stage 4.

Cyclocross pro racer Dan Timmerman (Riverside Racing) is no slouch when it comes to mountain biking. He’s been mixing it up among the top five of the solo men at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic, and sits in fourth overall after stage 4.

Zamora’s strategy worked well until a steep climb just before the fourth of five enduro segments when Werner seized an opportunity. “I’d never seen the trail before, but I had scoped it out on Strava and saw that it was wicked steep for 0.1 miles,” said Werner. “Pau swung wide on the right turn into it, and I chopped him inside and took over the lead ahead of him and Justin. I made it three-quarters of the way up the slick rocks before having to run, but the others had to run the whole thing after Pau slipped out. I led into the enduro segment, got a bigger gap and then went full gas to the finish which felt much further away than it had looked on the course map.”

The enduro riders were clearly having at least as much fun, if not more, than everyone else all week. Here, Cory Rimmer (Kona / Nox Composites / Provision Sports Medicine) demonstrated the preferred enduro line. He and enduro classification leader Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team) have ridden together for most of the week thus far.

The enduro riders were clearly having at least as much fun, if not more, than everyone else all week. Here, Cory Rimmer (Kona / Nox Composites / Provision Sports Medicine) demonstrated the preferred enduro line. He and enduro classification leader Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team) have ridden together for most of the week thus far.

“Kerry’s move was a good one,” said Lindine. “When we popped out on the road after the enduro segment, I could see him, and it became a pursuit match. I closed what was 35-40 seconds down to maybe 20 seconds at the finish.”

“Today was a hard day – a bit of a disaster for me from a GC standpoint,” said Lindine. “Unbeknownst to us, the enduro guys were having a terrible day, so their times on some of the enduro segments were slow. Neither Kerry nor I pushed it on the enduros today, but Kerry ended up first, and I was third in the day’s enduro classification, so due to the enduro time bonuses, I lost even more time to Kerry. Maybe I rode too conservatively today, but when you’re on the rivet, you don’t want to make a move and have someone counterattack it.”

It was a stellar day for Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling), who moved into the lead of the solo men’s general classification in stage 4 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. He leveraged a strategic move going into the fourth of five enduro segments to grab a stage win.

It was a stellar day for Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling), who moved into the lead of the solo men’s general classification in stage 4 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. He leveraged a strategic move going into the fourth of five enduro segments to grab a stage win.

With one minute separating Werner and Lindine, Friday’s final stage 5 will decide the race. Lindine knows well from his own past experience that one minute isn’t a big gap and anything could happen to change the race’s outcome.

Stage 4 Brief Results

  1. Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling)
  2. Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek)
  3. Pau Zamora (Buff Pro Team)

General Classification After Stage 4

  1. Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling)
  2. Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek)
  3. Pau Zamora (Buff Pro Team)

Enduro Stage 4 Brief Results

  1. Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling)
  2. Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team)
  3. Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek)

Enduro Classification After Stage 4

  1. Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team)
  2. Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling)
  3. Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek)

Elite women

Kaysee Armstrong (Liv) added climbing power to her descending prowess to earn her first stage win of the race. “This morning I wasn’t feeling super motivated, but then when we headed up the road climb, all the ladies were together, so I thought I’d dig a little deeper,” she said. “When I did, I felt really strong. So I thought, ‘Let’s just try to get to the first enduro as fast as possible.’ But then the rain started coming down, and I was like — oh, today’s my day. I loved every bit of it.”

Kaysee Armstrong (Liv) took her first NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic stage win of the week, beating women’s GC leader and race favorite Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team). Armstrong’s performance was good enough to bump her up from third to second in the women’s GC.

Kaysee Armstrong (Liv) took her first NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic stage win of the week, beating women’s GC leader and race favorite Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team). Armstrong’s performance was good enough to bump her up from third to second in the women’s GC.

Armstrong is quite familiar with racing in the rain. “I race a lot in Pisgah where it rains a lot like that, so it worked out in my favor.” She now sits solidly in second place in the GC, as well as the enduro classification, and continues to take each stage one at a time.

Overall race leader Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women) did not pull away from the pack as she has on other days, but she still held on to her lead and her good attitude. “I had some mechanical issues today…those slowed me down,” she said. “But it’s good for me to have days like this, because it challenges me to push through. I had to work to get back up into second place. It was rough. I’m actually feeling a little bit grumpy. But Kaysee rode an amazing race and even before I was having problems, she was crushing the climbs.”

Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) had a challenging day despite weather that was more like that of her native Scotland; however, the pink-clad race leader successfully managed to defend her overall lead with one stage to go in the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.

Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) had a challenging day despite weather that was more like that of her native Scotland; however, the pink-clad race leader successfully managed to defend her overall lead with one stage to go in the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.

Stage racing allows one to wipe the slate clean and start fresh each day. “Tomorrow’s another day… I’m just hoping to hold onto the GC win,” Barclay said.

Bryna Blanchard (Windham Mountain Outfitters) also had a strong day that resulted in third place. “I surprised myself that I could maintain that pace for that amount of time. I did everything I could and am satisfied with my ride. I was proud to be able to ride with Selene Yeager (Emmaus Bad Decisions Club).” Yeager is a past winner of the race who is riding on a team this year.

Blanchard had no illusions about the coming final effort. “Tomorrow’s going to be harder than today, a lot harder. I think I have to just not go to that dark place and try to stay focused on every section.”

Stage 4 Brief Results

  1. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  2. Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team)
  3. Bryna Blanchard (Windham Mountain Outfitters)

General Classification After Stage 4

  1. Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team)
  2. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  3. Bryna Blanchard (Windham Mountain Outfitters)

Enduro Stage 4 Brief Results

  1. Meggie Bichard (Fuji)
  2. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  3. Kimberly Quinlan (Bicycle Express Racing)

Enduro Classification After Stage 4

  1. Meggie Bichard (Fuji)
  2. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  3. Kimberly Quinlan (Bicycle Express Racing)

The Trails

Stage 4 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic took racers to R.B. Winter State Park for some of the most picturesque riding in Pennsylvania. Among the highlights were Black Gap Trail and White Deer Creek Trail. The course’s 35.2 miles, with 4,616 feet of climbing, were fast and furious and included five enduro segments. A cold, spring-fed lake awaited at the finish – where riders could cool down and clean off the day’s mud.

Check out our daily Facebook Live coverage!

Watch our live coverage on Facebook for each stage’s start and from somewhere out on course. We also stream each evening’s post-stage slideshow, video recap and awards ceremony.

Thanks to our sponsors

The NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic presented is made possible with the generous support of great partners like Julbo, Central PA Tourism, Lupine, Purple Lizard, SRAM, Kona, NUUN, Freeze Thaw Cycles, EVOC and more!

Social media

For more information, visit OutdoorExperience.org or TSEpic.com; find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TransSylvaniaEpic; or follow us on Instagram or Twitter @TransSylvania, #TSEpic, #TSEnduro and #SingletrackSummerCamp.

Tran-Sylvania Stage 3

Phillips finally gets his NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic stage win

Bichard tops women’s podium while Lindine and Barclay retain their overall leads

TRANS-SYLVANIA, PA (June 1, 2016) – Today was Enduro Day at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic – a day when descending prowess is key for every racer. While the elite solo general classification contenders tried to keep the rubber side down and their hopes of overall glory alive, the gravity specialists let it fly and showed everyone the fastest way down the mountain.

Elite men

Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team) was ecstatic to finally capture his first stage win at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic on his third try. “I’m pumped, I finally got a stage win at Trans-Sylvania! That’s been a long time coming,” he said. “The last two years, I’ve been frustrated to miss out on the enduro stage win due to flat tires and other issues. Today, I didn’t do the typical enduro day hangout with people; I stayed focused and blasted my way through the course.”

Before the stage even started, Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team) had his sights set on winning the enduro stage of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic after being the fastest enduro racer on the first two days of this year’s race. Phillips had never previously won a Trans-Sylvania Epic stage… until today.

Before the stage even started, Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team) had his sights set on winning the enduro stage of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic after being the fastest enduro racer on the first two days of this year’s race. Phillips had never previously won a Trans-Sylvania Epic stage… until today.

When asked what he did differently this year, Phillips explained his gravity-focused bike prep. “The last few days, I had some chain issues because I didn’t have a chain guide, which was poor planning on my part, so I went and got a chain guide yesterday at Freeze-Thaw Cycles. I put on downhill tires and put 33 psi in the rear tire and 30 psi in the front, so I could go as fast as I wanted through the rocks without flatting.”

The fourth section of the day, the Wildcat Gap trail, is notoriously difficult – basically a steeply tilted rock garden – but Phillips made it look easy. “You’re good at things when it’s life or death. So basically you get going into a section, and if you shut your brain off just enough that you get up to a speed where it’s life or death, you’re going to be a way better rider than if you’re thinking about it and trying to use your skills. Suddenly you realize you’re going so fast you can’t stop, so you either have to make the trail or you’re going to crash. Eventually you go so fast that you don’t fall in the holes, you’re just skimming across the top, and it feels like you’re riding across braking bumps instead of a rock garden.”

Phillips has a decently comfortable lead in enduro points over second place racer Cory Rimmer (Kona / Nox Composites / Provision Sports Medicine). He plans to ride conservatively the next two days to defend that lead.

Men’s race leader Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek) rails it on the first timed enduro section during stage 3 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Lindine would go on to finish third on the day and retain his lead over Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling).

Men’s race leader Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek) rails it on the first timed enduro section during stage 3 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Lindine would go on to finish third on the day and retain his lead over Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling).

Overall leader Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek) put in a good performance to grab the third podium spot, keeping his GC lead. “I gained a whole nine seconds on Kerry [Werner, Rally Cycling]…not terrible. I had four good runs, and then crashed in the middle of the last one, which was too bad, because I think it would have been fast.” Werner borrowed a bigger-travel bike which mean he lost time to Lindine in the flatter two first sections, but made up time on the latter two steeper, rockier sections.

Tomorrow’s stage 4 at R.B. Winter State Park, with its new added sections and longer distance, will challenge Lindine’s local knowledge gained from past race editions.

Stage 3 Brief Results

  1. Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team)
  2. Cory Rimmer (Kona / Nox Composites / Provision Sports Medicine)
  3. Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek)

General Classification After Stage 3

  1. Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek)
  2. Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling)
  3. Adria Noguera Soldevila (Buff Pro Team)

Enduro Stage 3 Brief Results

  1. Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team)
  2. Cory Rimmer (Kona / Nox Composites / Provision Sports Medicine)
  3. Justin Lindine (Apex / NBX / Trek)

Enduro Classification After Stage 3

  1. Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team)
  2. Cory Rimmer (Kona / Nox Composites / Provision Sports Medicine)
  3. Christopher Hamlin (Bicycle Express Racing)

Elite women

With the day’s action focused on enduro, Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes) got a turn in the spotlight. The unassuming British enduro racer, who currently lives in New Zealand, has been quietly dominating the enduro category all week.

“I enjoyed today! The last three enduro segments were world-class,” said Bichard. “I haven’t ridden anything like that before. It was pure rock garden the whole way down the trail. Riding it blind made it pretty interesting, too. I’ve never raced anywhere like this in the U.S., and I’m impressed – I’d only previously been to Colorado.”

Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes) continued her domination of the solo women’s enduro classification in her first-ever NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. She spends half the year in New Zealand and half the year travelling around the world to different races.

Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes) continued her domination of the solo women’s enduro classification in her first-ever NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. She spends half the year in New Zealand and half the year travelling around the world to different races.

Up and coming young rider Kaysee Armstrong (Liv) continued to excel in the enduro and rode to second place in the stage. Unlike Bichard, who decided not to contest the cross country after experiencing stage 1, Armstrong is among the top women in both classifications.

“My chain came off on the third enduro segment, but everything else was perfect and smooth about today,” said Armstrong. “The fifth and final section was my favorite. I didn’t remember all those rocks! It just kept going and going.”

Kaysee Armstrong (Liv) has been one of the top cross country and enduro riders in the solo women’s category this week. She broke a chain during stage 3 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic, but fortunately, it was between the timed enduro segments, so she still finished second in the stage.

Kaysee Armstrong (Liv) has been one of the top cross country and enduro riders in the solo women’s category this week. She broke a chain during stage 3 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic, but fortunately, it was between the timed enduro segments, so she still finished second in the stage.

Kimberly Quinlan (Bicycle Express Racing) claimed the final spot in the day’s top three and made her first podium appearance of the week.

Race leader Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes) kept her overall GC lead with a fourth place on the day; however, Armstrong’s enduro prowess moved her into second place, bumping Bryna Blanchard (Windham Mountain Outfitters) into third.

 

Stage 3 Brief Results

  1. Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes)
  2. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  3. Kimberly Quinlan (Bicycle Express Racing)

General Classification After Stage 3

  1. Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team)?
  2. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  3. Bryna Blanchard (Windham Mountain Outfitters)

Enduro Stage 3 Brief Results

  1. Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes)
  2. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  3. Kimberly Quinlan (Bicycle Express Racing)

Enduro Classification After Stage 3

  1. Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes)
  2. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  3. Karen Talley Mead (Two Wheel Fixation)

The Trails

The third day of the Trans-Sylvania Epic was all about enduro racing. There were five separate Julbo/EVOC enduro segments with no timed racing in between them – racers simply pedalled on to the next segment and let it roll. The timed segments counted toward both the overall general classification and the enduro points sub-classification. The day’s total riding covered 29.5 miles and included 4,377 feet of climbing.

Check out our daily Facebook Live coverage!

Watch our live coverage on Facebook for each stage’s start and from somewhere out on course. We also stream each evening’s post-stage slideshow, video recap and awards ceremony.

Thanks to our sponsors

The NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic presented is made possible with the generous support of great partners like Julbo, Central PA Tourism, Lupine, Purple Lizard, SRAM, Kona, NUUN, Freeze Thaw Cycles, EVOC and more!

Social media

For more information, visit OutdoorExperience.org or TSEpic.com; find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TransSylvaniaEpic; or follow us on Instagram or Twitter @TransSylvania, #TSEpic, #TSEnduro and #SingletrackSummerCamp.

Tran-Sylvania Epic Stage 2 Report/Results

Lindine claims stage 2 battle with Werner at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic

Barclay continues winning ways

TRANS-SYLVANIA, PA (May 31, 2016) – Today’s stage featured some of the signature trails of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic, including classic Eastern rocky singletrack that inspired racers to give it their all. Despite the challenging terrain, the top riders fought until the end and kept things close.

Elite men

Justin Lindine (APEX / NBX / Trek) and Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling) continued their two-man battle with Lindine sprinting to the stage victory and continuing as overall leader.

“Today was a lot like yesterday with Kerry and me getting away early and racing each other in the hopes of snagging time bonuses by also doing well in the enduros,” said Lindine. “We’d stay together on the gravel and whoever felt better would surge to get ahead in the singletrack – each of us led different singletrack sections. Kerry even got a slight gap on me at one point up on Tussey Mountain, but I knew the trail so well that I was pretty sure I could bring him back.”

Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling) leads Justin Lindine (APEX / NBX / Trek) through a tight section of singletrack early in the second stage of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. The two top elite men’s riders would stay together for the duration of the stage - neither was able to shake the other.

First-time NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic racer Werner doesn’t have the advantage of familiarity with the trails, but he’s still loving them. “I’ve never ridden up here, but I grew up in southeastern Pennsylvania. We have rocks there, but not as gnarly,” said Werner. “The John Wert trail and Tussey Mountain ridge trail were amazing today!”

Going into the final off-road section in the last mile, Werner attacked on a steep section, but Lindine reacted quickly. The stage was set for a sprint.

“Justin and I are well matched fitness-wise,” said Werner. “Maybe toward the end of the week, we’ll start to see some chinks in each other’s armor.”

The surprise of the day came from Spanish rider Adria Noguera Soldevila (Buff Pro Team), who rode his way into third place for the stage and GC. “I’m on a hardtail – unlike the other top riders – so the technical parts have been hard, and I try to make up time on the gravel roads.” His teammate Pau Zamora said, “We’ve never ridden singletrack like this before. This is different – it’s hard to keep your momentum through the technical sections, especially on our hardtails.

Tomorrow’s stage 3 enduro format could shake up the standings as the top three riders will get time bonuses applied to the general classification.

Phil Beard (Bicycle Express Racing) leans into a turn. The singletrack is tight and leaves little room for error throughout the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.

Phil Beard (Bicycle Express Racing) leans into a turn. The singletrack is tight and leaves little room for error throughout the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.

Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team), who overcame mechanical issues to win the enduro category for the stage as well as defend his overall lead in the enduro classification, was clearly having fun. “The second segment was super pedally, and I time trialled it and was going so hard that I got cross-eyed. I came into that last rock pile so fast that I literally couldn’t crash because I had so much momentum. I hit something and caught air and got sideways but was up there for so long that I had time to turn myself back around. I can’t wait for tomorrow’s enduro stage – I want to finally get a Trans-Sylvania Epic stage win!”

Stage 2 Brief Results

  1. Justin Lindine (APEX / NBX / Trek)
  2. Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling)
  3. Adria Noguera Soldevila (Buff Pro Team)

General Classification After Stage 2

  1. Justin Lindine (APEX / NBX / Trek)
  2. Kerry Werner (Rally Cycling)
  3. Adria Noguera Soldevila

Enduro Stage 2 Brief Results

  1. Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team)
  2. Cory Rimmer (Kona / Nox Composite)
  3. Edward Kerly (Fuji Bikes)

Enduro Classification After Stage 2

  1. Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team)
  2. Cory Rimmer (Kona / Nox Composite)
  3. Justin Lindine (APEX / NBX / Trek)

Full Results from the Stage Here: Stage-2-Results-0358-PM-stage

Elite women

Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women) used her local expertise on the technical course to pull out a win, despite not feeling her best. “As soon as I started today, I could tell I was heavy in the legs,” she said. “Kaysee Armstrong [Liv] was with me for the first 6-7 miles, and then I got away on one of the big climbs and I rode by myself all day. Bryna [Blanchard, Windham Mountain Outfitters] was not too far behind today.”

For tomorrow’s enduro stage, Barclay said she’s not going to push it. “I’m not going to try to win the enduro stage… there’s some fast downhill girls here, Kaysee and Meggie [Bichard, Fuji Bikes],” she said. “I just want to get down and have a good time… just let my legs spin and recover as much as possible.”

Defending champion Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) on her way to a second solo stage win in a row during day 2 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Barclay, a State College local, knows and loves most of the trails in this year’s race.

Defending champion Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) on her way to a second solo stage win in a row during day 2 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Barclay, a State College local, knows and loves most of the trails in this year’s race.

Blanchard had a fantastic day, and it showed in her result, just 2:28 behind Barclay. “I had so much fun today. It was like magic… probably one of the best days I’ve had on the bike this year,” she said. She also plans to ride conservatively in the enduro stage. “Tomorrow I just want to ride clean, minimize the damage, and recover on the climbs. Hopefully I can build on how I felt today and keep it smooth. I have no illusions about trying to do anything on enduro day other than just enjoying it and not killing myself.”

Armstrong, who nabbed second in the 2014 NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic in the Under 25 category, is enjoying her solid third place spot. “We started off well,” she said. “Vicki and I were together for a little bit at the beginning, but then we hit the gravel road and she was gone. Bryna caught me not long afterward, so I just tried to maintain third and saved energy for Tussey Ridge, because two years ago when I did it I died, and today it was perfect.”

Armstrong is a good descender and earned a 60-second time bonus for finishing second overall in today’s enduro sections, so she could be a threat to gain GC time tomorrow with a good performance. However, the New Zealander Bichard continues to dominate the overall women’s enduro competition.

Stage 2 Brief Results

  1. Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women)
  2. Bryna Blanchard (Windham Mountain Outfitters)
  3. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)

General Classification After Stage 2

  1. Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women)
  2. Bryna Blanchard (Windham Mountain Outfitters)
  3. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)

Enduro Stage 2 Brief Results

  1. Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes)
  2. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  3. Karen Talley Mead (Two Wheel Fixation)

Enduro Classification after Stage 2

  1. Meggie Bichard (Fuji Bikes)
  2. Kaysee Armstrong (Liv)
  3. Karen Talley Mead (Two Wheel Fixation)

Full Results from the Stage Here: Stage-2-Results-0358-PM-stage

The Trails

At 36.9 miles and with 3,921 feet of climbing, the “Queen Stage” came early to the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic this year – it was moved up from its traditional spot as the final day to the second day. Perhaps the most awesome stage of the week, stage 2 combined trails from the myriad of races that have made Rothrock State Forest legendary. The three Julbo/EVOC enduro segments were among the fastest of the week, but rocky singletrack lovers also got their share of awesomeness with the John Wert trail and the always scenic Tussey Ridge trail.

Check out our daily Facebook Live video coverage!

Watch our live video coverage on Facebook for each stage’s start and from somewhere out on course. We also stream each evening’s post-stage slideshow, video recap and awards ceremony.

Thanks to our sponsors

The NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic presented is made possible with the generous support of great partners like Julbo, Central PA Tourism, Lupine, Purple Lizard, SRAM, Kona, NUUN, Freeze Thaw Cycles, EVOC and more.

Social media


For more information, visit OutdoorExperience.org or TSEpic.com; find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TransSylvaniaEpic; or follow us on Instagram or Twitter @TransSylvania, #TSEpic, #TSEnduro and #SingletrackSummerCamp.

NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic – Stage 7

Lindine and Barclay win NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic

Timmerman and Chinburg celebrate victories in final day’s stage 7

 

The last day of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic brought a few more miles and lots of smiles. For the elite men, the final day was shorter, but no less intense, with 26 miles of twisty singletrack for racers to whip through in an effort to grab one of the tightly-contested top spots. Two fun enduro sections offered up the last points for the gravity specialists to grab. Most everyone else decided to celebrate a good week with a nice, relaxed ride in the woods with friends.

Justin Lindine (Competitive Cyclist) and Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) celebrated overall victories in the elite men’s and women’s general classification. Final stage wins went to Dan Timmerman (Riverside Racing) and Megan Chinburg.

Dan Timmerman (Riverside Racing) makes a solo push during stage 7 at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Photos by: Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Dan Timmerman (Riverside Racing) makes a solo push during stage 7 at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Photos by: Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Elite men

Dan Timmerman (Riverside Racing) took advantage of his fifth place in the general classification (GC) to escape for a stage win.

“I was of no consequence in the GC, so I figured the guys would give me a bit of room,” said Timmerman. “And I attacked at a good place. No backpack today. I think that was it. My back was feeling good today!”

Timmerman enjoyed the race and his result. “Great experience overall—there were a few days when I got myself up there, and I’m happy with that,” he said.

Justin Lindine (Competitive Cyclist) fended off an attack by his teammate Payson McElveen to grab the overall NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic win, his second ever. His team worked well together and dominated the podium as a result.

“We rode a great team race all week long. Today, we were one-two coming out of the time trial, Payson and me, and Tristan was in third or fourth, and we got him into third,” said Lindine. “We did smart team tactics all week. Payson unfortunately flatted yesterday, and so I had the leader’s jersey today. We had enough of a gap to have a friendly battle today. It came out perfect, we got 1-2-3 in the general classification. It’s so nice to have the cards to play. Peter [Glassford] had an unfortunate situation trying to battle all three of us. You fight those odds and it’s impossible to win.”

Lindine pointed out that to race hard on this seventh day is asking a lot of already battered bodies. “Today was hard. This day is always like a normal cross country race at the end of some endurance days, so your legs don’t want to do what you want them to do. Between Peter and Payson charging, it was managing the leaks in the ship. It’s pretty awesome to win, it’s a tough week of racing.”

Payson McElveen (Competitive Cyclist), having been in prime position to win for most of the week and then losing time yesterday due to a mechanical, was not willing to give up without a fight.

“I threw everything I could at Justin, but I knew seven minutes was a pretty tall task in 28 miles,” said McElveen. “My plan was to sneak into the singletrack first and hope he’d be a couple riders back, but I went a little too early and he just jumped on my wheel. I went hard for the first 15 minutes and settled in, then hit it hard at halfway. Timmerman threw down a massive attack. I chased him, both Justin and I chased him, but my legs were so sore when I woke up this morning from running yesterday. I was chasing as hard as I could, he had more gas than me though, so I was happy with second.”

About coming so close and then settling for second, McElveen said, “It’s pretty bittersweet. It’ll take some time to fully appreciate, but it’s an improvement from last year. It was everything, having a team. Poor Peter. He didn’t complain a single time, just pulled. Based on how much he could have complained, I was so impressed with his professionalism. Big props to him.”

Peter Glassford (Trek Canada) was the lone man in the lead group, but he nevertheless made a valiant effort to get away, being only a few seconds from third in GC. “It was hard. I didn’t think I’d have a lot today,” said Glassford. “I felt OK, but it’s amazing how fast I went considering how crappy I felt. There were some accelerations but mostly I led. Then on the gravel road, I put in a last-ditch effort on the long climb up through the feed zone, but it got steep fast and I sort of caved in. It came back together, and after that, Tristan and I were really tired. My body said, let’s just enjoy this.”

After the dust settled, Tristan Uhl (Competitive Cyclist) had hung on to his third place. “Today was hard! Started fast. Peter and Payson were pushing the pace from the get-go, but my strategy was to just hang with Peter and hope he couldn’t drop me,” said Uhl. “We both put in some surges, he was tearing my legs off on the long climb but I was able to stay with him, and we came to an unofficial truce at the end. We were ready for it to be over, I think.”

Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) makes her way through the heckle pit on her way to winning the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Photos by: Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) makes her way through the heckle pit on her way to winning the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Photos by: Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Elite women

Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Women’s Elite Team) has been a favorite to win this race in all four years she’s entered, and at last, today she stood on the top of the podium. Since the women’s standings were fairly spread out, they decided to do a “parade lap” and have some fun.

“Today was definitely a parade! There was a bit of confusion for a bit, since two of the Under 25 riders were going to race, so women in the elite category got nervous that if they went fast enough, it would change the overall GC standings,” said Barclay. “But it turned out that the two had a mishap and were behind anyway. We all got back together at the checkpoint, and it was a proper party pace from there.”

Barclay is happy to bask in glory. “First GC win here! It feels amazing,” she said. “I was a little concerned in the last day that something would happen to my bike and everyone would just ditch me. It’s a party, but inside, everyone is still worried about their times. It was a fun ride with a great group of women. The dynamics this year were good.”

Mical Dyck (Stan’s NoTubes Women’s Elite Team) had the skills to earn second place in both the elite women’s and enduro categories. “It was a fun week, but abusive on the body and bum! It was super nice today doing a parade lap and not having to go for it,” said Dyck.

This was Dyck’s first trip to the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic, and she learned some geology. “I knew it would be rocky, that’s what I had heard about the trails out here,” she said. “In Victoria, BC, we have a ton of rocks, but different rocks. We have big rock slabs. But this is constant false flats so you have to pedal through smaller rocks all day. I would definitely challenge it again, I like to suffer.”

Cyclo-crosser Crystal Anthony (Riverside Racing) came in third in GC while having a good time at her second stage race. “It was super challenging in a lot of different ways,” said Anthony. “It was such a great event, I’m so glad I was here. I’ve only done one other one, with a lot more people, around 1,200 people, so this is much more close-knit and fun.”

Anthony showed her prowess on the technical sections of the course and earned the top spot for the women in the East Coast Rocks competition.

: Libby White (Colt Training Systems) cuts a line through the brush during stage 7 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Photos by: Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

: Libby White (Colt Training Systems) cuts a line through the brush during stage 7 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Photos by: Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Under 25 men and women

Libby White (Colt Training Systems) was able to hang on through the week to take the overall win for the Under 25 women.

“It’s been exhausting! After day 1, I wasn’t sure if I was going to keep it. I was surprised to get the lead on day 1, but I kind of killed myself,” said White. “Then enduro day came and all these long days, but today we had ourselves a parade stage and finished things out.”

White pointed out that in such a long race, relaxing and socializing can help you focus. “The motivation came from talking to people and making sure I was having fun,” said White. “When you ride this many hours, you have to make sure you’re having fun and are mentally in the game. I usually just picked a pop song for the day. Today was ‘Bad Blood’ by Taylor Swift, so I just keep singing that.”

For the Under 25 men, Drew Dillman (Colt Training Systems) remained just behind Payson McElveen for second place. He also showed his technical skills by winning the King of the East Coast Rocks competition. His teammate Cameron Dodge rounded out the top three.

Enduro overall winner Bryan Fawley (Kodiak Tough) makes his way through the woods at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic  Photos by: Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Enduro overall winner Bryan Fawley (Kodiak Tough) makes his way through the woods at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic Photos by: Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Enduro

Sue Haywood (Stan’s NoTubes Women’s Elite Team) has built upon her considerable technical cross country riding skills to transform herself into an enduro specialist, and her NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic Enduro win is her first win this season. It’s not necessarily easier than cross country, though.

“Lifestyle enduro is not all fun and games! It’s mostly fun, but you still have to charge every downhill, even the ones you don’t know, so you’re reading them fresh,” said Haywood. “The thing about enduro is you still have to keep yourself together throughout the week. You’re either going to have a mechanical or a crash. It hurt, but I could still go on. No mechanicals, no flat tires, which was great.”

Haywood remains a threat for either category and could take her pick. “I knew enduro would be a possibility,” she said. “This is my first race of the year. I thought I’d have more in the tank for the cross country stuff, but I had nothing. So being able to focus on enduro was awesome. Cody [Phillips] has said this, but you cannot pursue two goals here. You won’t be able to to do top-notch in the GC and the enduro. Mical [Dyck] got second in both, but if she’d focused on enduro, we would have been super tight, and mentally I would have really had to step it up. It’s so taxing, everything, and it’s so hard mentally and with your adrenal glands going crazy, to do both.”

Cody Phillips (Ibis Cycles Enduro Team) was a favorite to grab the elite men’s enduro win, but he just missed out when talented cross country racer Bryan Fawley (Kodiak Tough) decided to focus on this category instead of open men. “I just lost it today by 60 points,” he said. “[Fawley] got me on both of the segments today and we were only separated by 20 points, so that put him in the win by 60 points.”

Phillips was philosophical about his close loss. “I give it all I have and there’s nothing else I can do,” he said. “It’s different from cross country where you can see where people are. So I go out and try to focus and relax. It’s what I’ve been doing for the past few years, so I know how to do it. But he beat me straight up today. I can’t complain! He made it really hard, especially compared to last year. No one was that focused on it last year.”

Some of the credit for the fun enduro sections goes to Phillips, who gave feedback on the course after racing last year. “Getting more people here for enduro was the goal,” he said. “I gave the promoters a lot of input on the course to improve the enduro segments so we have more guys coming from out West to participate. We need to have more downhill to get the big names out here. I think the prize money is enough to bring people out though.”

Special Announcement: Pennsylvania gets new NICA High School League

High school mountain bike racing is coming to Pennsylvania in 2016. At the awards ceremony of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic on Saturday afternoon, organizers announced that the National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) has awarded Pennsylvania a new league.

“We started on this effort a year and a half ago, and I’m excited to announce that NICA has accepted our bid,” said Mike Kuhn who submitted the bid for the league in conjunction with Pat Engleman, Mike Bush, Matt Spohn, Lou Mazzante, Todd Strauss, Jason Thomas, Clay Chiles and Bruce Bedell.

Pennsylvania High School Mountain Bike Racing will be conducted each fall, with the first season kicking off in the fall of 2016.

More information on the new league will be forthcoming at Interbike in September. Find the new Pennsylvania League in the meantime on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PASMTB?fref=ts

The NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic is made possible with the generous support of great partners like Pactimo, Lupine, Purple Lizard, Klean Kanteen, Dirt Rag, SRAM, Kona, BMC, ProGold, NUUN, Freeze Thaw Cycles and more!

Click Here for full results from Stage 7

Click Here for full GC results following Stage 7

NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic Stage 6

Uhl and Barclay win stage 6 at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic

Lindine takes over general classification after McElveen’s mechanical

 

In a race as long and challenging as the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic, the only constant is change. On the signature trail of the stage and of the race, Tussey Ridge, the men’s category was shaken up today by a mechanical and will be tightly contested tomorrow. Meanwhile in the women’s race, local knowledge of the rocky course proved decisive.

Tristan Uhl (Competitive Cyclist) and Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) won the elite men’s and women’s categories in stage 6. Justin Lindine (Competitive Cyclist) took over the elite men’s general classification (GC) lead from his teammate Payson McElveen after McElveen had a major mechanical. Barclay successfully defended and extended her lead in the overall elite women’s classification.

Elite men

Tristan Uhl (Competitive Cyclist) grabbed his first stage win today, taking some pressure off his teammates during the stage. He and Peter Glassford (Trek Canada) are now separated by only 12 seconds in third and fourth places in the GC.

“I’m super excited to take the win,” said Uhl. “Peter and I have been duking it out for third place in the general classification, and I kind of took advantage of him having a bad spot on one of the run up/ride ups, and pushed it hard on the second enduro segment to get a gap on everyone. I just decided to keep it rolling on the climb, and I expected to have the guys come back to me. But they didn’t, so I kept it rolling relatively smooth.”

The winning effort cost Uhl dearly. “That last road section never ends,” he said. “I lost my Garmin in the East Coast Rocks section, and I didn’t have a clue how much further I had to go. I knew we had to come back along the fence line, but I forgot how hard it was. The last climb almost killed me. I’m probably going to be hurting tomorrow. I think Peter and I are about tied for time, so it’ll make for a fun last stage.”

Glassford has been working alone toward the front of the race all week, and was rewarded for his efforts today. “I had a good stage today. Tristan beat me but I finished in second, which is my best NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic stage finish so far. I didn’t embarrass myself horribly while Justin [Lindine (Competitive Cyclist)] and Payson [McElveen (Competitive Cyclist)] followed me.”

Glassford used some Canadian style to get an edge on the technical Tussey Mountain ridge trail. “Payton got a flat because I threw a crazy corner on Tussey and they weren’t ready for the ‘Ontario wide-cut’. Then, I just drilled it when I got on the road, just buried myself.”

Despite the lonely struggle as he is here racing without teammates, Glassford has kept a good attitude, which should come in handy tomorrow as he makes a play for third place overall.

“The steep climbs get me,” said Glassford. “But it was good racing, it was fun. It’s tough going against three guys out there. It’s pull until I get attacked, and I keep drilling it. But that’s what I like to do!”

McElveen’s flat turned out to be disastrous. “We had Tristan get away, which was great,” he said. “Peter was pulling and Justin and I were sitting on. Then I punctured big time on Tussey Ridge, just a massive tear. We can’t take tires off the rim without basically a car tire lever.”

“Justin was kind enough to stop and help me, and we tried as hard as we could to break the bead but we couldn’t,” said McElveen. “I finally just started to ride the rim, and at the end of Tussey Ridge, the whole wheel exploded, which was predictable. Then I just started running. I have a very large blister on my right foot now. I ran for a long time, it felt like forever.”

McElveen switched out his wheel at the last aid station and chased as hard as he could. “I figured the race is probably over for me now, but you never know. And if I don’t try… well, I might as well try.” McElveen dropped to second place in GC with six minutes over third.

McElveen’s teammate and close competitor Lindine had a relatively uneventful day, always a good thing, and it landed him in the race leader’s jersey.

“It was going really well,” said Lindine. “I like a lot of the trails on this stage, and it’s broken up nicely. We had a super aggressive first 45 minutes and split it into the smaller group of the four of us. Tristan was able to get away on the first enduro section, which was perfect, and Peter got a bit gapped off, so Payson and I sat up. We were like, ‘Sorry, man, this is the job we have to do.’ Peter has spent the most time on the front of anyone in the race.”

When McElveen’s tire blew, Lindine went above and beyond to help his teammate. “We were riding across Tussey when Payson flatted,” he said. “I stopped, we tried to fix it, it wasn’t going well. It’s not ideal. No one wants to take the jersey that way. I know as well as anyone that this race can come down to mechanicals and luck. I don’t know what the clock is going to say, but we’ll see how it plays out.”

Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) heads off the road and onto a section of singletrack in stage 6 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.Photos by: Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) heads off the road and onto a section of singletrack in stage 6 of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.Photos by: Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Elite women

Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women), a State College local, was unable to use her usual strategy of hanging out with the guys today, but she got help from Selene Yeager (Rare Disease Cycling) as well as her teammate Mical Dyck (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women).

“Selene helped me big time in the start,” said Barclay. “I missed the train of lead guys and I was like, ‘What am I going to do? Hammer at three miles in?’ But Selene was so nice. Then Mical caught us so we all worked together on the road. She was tired on the climbs, but I was trying to help her stay in second place. And we were working with the singlespeeders as well!”

Barclay’s lead of 17 minutes seems solid, but she knows better than most that things can go sideways at any moment. “Everything is so dry! You could definitely slide out,” she said. “I had the slight advantage on the ridge because I ride it all the time. Sometimes I can’t clean it, but today I cleaned all the sections.” [If you’ve never seen the Tussey Ridge Trail, cleaning it is an amazing feat!]

Yeager seems to have raced herself into recovery and was feeling much better than earlier in the week, so she used her mojo to help Barclay along. “Vicki was in front all of the day except for 15 seconds when I pulled her,” she said. “But I knew she would go. I was using her trail knowledge and following her. I could see her for most of the day. I kind of wanted to get her at the end, but I slid out on a bunch of gravel trying to accelerate.”

“I knew I wasn’t going to get her, but this is the best I’ve felt on this day,” said Yeager. “I wasn’t going to make up 20 minutes on Vicki today, so I wanted to help her.”

Under 25 men and women

Payson McElveen nearly got his usual top Under 25 spot nabbed from him by Lewis Gaffney (Colt Training Systems), who came in just 27 seconds later. A new name rounded out the top three Under 25 men, Cameron Dodge, also of Colt Training Systems.

Libby White (Colt Training Systems) continued to build an impressive lead with another win today, with Samantha Runnels (Colt Training Systems) not far behind. Emily Shields (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) came in a solid third.

Announcement coming

Look for a big announcement relating to the future of the sport coming out at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic on Saturday.

The NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic is made possible with the generous support of great partners like Pactimo, Lupine, Purple Lizard, Klean Kanteen, Dirt Rag, SRAM, Kona, BMC, ProGold, NUUN, Freeze Thaw Cycles and more!

Click Here for results from Stage 6

Click Here for GC results following Stage 6

Trans-Sylvania Epic Stage 5

McElveen and Anthony win stage 5 at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic

McElveen and Barclay defend their leads in overall classification

Today’s stage started at R.B. Winter State Park, after a drive along a pastoral valley road complete with Amish buggies. In past editions of the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic, this stage has served up arduous singletrack sections and heartbreaking climbs, but this year’s course was smoother and more forgiving, thanks to some route changes and lots of trail work.

Payson McElveen (Competitive Cyclist) and Crystal Anthony (Riverside Racing) won the elite men’s and women’s categories while McElveen and Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women’s Team) successfully defended their respective leads in the overall elite classifications.

Cody Kaiser (Colt Training Systems) splashes through a wet section of trail at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.Photos by Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Cody Kaiser (Colt Training Systems) splashes through a wet section of trail at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic.Photos by Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

 

Elite men

Payson McElveen (Competitive Cyclist) added slightly less than one minute of time to his lead over teammate Justin Lindine.

“It was a solid day,” said McElveen. “This stage always makes me nervous because it’s more raw than the others, so I first and foremost wanted to come into today and defend the lead and get a bit more time if I could.”

Experience at this race helped McElveen’s strategy. “I remembered how the race played out last year. There’s a steep singletrack bit after a steep dirt road, and I remembered that singletrack being selective last year, so I jumped in and hit it, and got a gap on Justin. I did the following enduro section as fast as I could while still being safe. The hard part was the hard drag of 10-12 minutes on dirt road. Last year, Jeremiah Bishop was the one causing pain and got about 10 seconds on me on that road, and I went deep in the pain cave to bridge back up.”

McElveen and Lindine are separated by just under four minutes in the general classification, and the two have 16 minutes on the third-place GC rider, Peter Glassford (Trek Canada). “Justin and I went one-two again, and that’s the best scenario,” said McElveen.

Glassford’s strategy today was part sprinting, part styling. “I just wanted to get my Trek Superfly to the road gap jump as fast as I could,” he said. “Since I am outnumbered in the lead group, I have been basically pulling pretty hard and trying to keep myself out of trouble until attacks start, then hoping that one or all of them drop off, and I end up in a decent spot. I was psyched to get some time on Tristan [Uhl] today and even more psyched to hit the road gap with a strong whip this year.”

Crystal Anthony (Riverside Racing) blasts through the trees at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Photos by Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Crystal Anthony (Riverside Racing) blasts through the trees at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic. Photos by Trans-Sylvania Epic Media Team

Elite women

Once again, Vicki Barclay (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women) separated herself from her fellow female racers early and rode with the elite men. Her strategy didn’t get her the win today, however.

“I went off pretty hard with the lead men and was hanging on their train,” said Barclay. “I led the race until the first piece of singletrack after the aid station, the East Coast Rocks section, and I came out of there and looked behind me and saw [my teammate] Mical [Dyck].”

Barclay got a gap on Dyck, but Crystal Anthony (Riverside Racing) eventually bridged up. Barclay and Anthony rode together for a section until they started to climb.

“She attacked and I thought it was a really long climb [like last year] and I was hurting,” said Barclay. “But then we went left into singletrack! I could see her all the way until the last hike-a-bike section, she was right there, but she got back and put in a gap on me on the road.”

Barclay said she’s not worried about finishing second to Anthony on the day because she has a lot of time on the GC. “But the cyclo-cross queen we all know and love put some power down today!” said Barclay of her top rival.

Anthony showed that ‘cross techniques can translate to longer races as well. “I have now learned my lesson this week and rode my own race at the start, just tried to keep Mical in sight on that first climb but didn’t try to chase her down,” she said.

“I just rode my own pace and got Mical on the first enduro section, was riding with her for a while and was starting to feel good,” said Anthony. “Then, after the East Coast Rocks section, I started seeing Vicki, and caught her and we rode together for a while. On the road, I didn’t really mean to attack, I just stood up, realized I was getting a gap, and thought the top of the hill was coming up. I was like, ‘What am I doing?!’ But I rode as hard as I could to stay away.”

Under 25 men and women

Emily Shields (Stan’s NoTubes Elite Women) had the fastest Under 25 women’s time today, good enough for sixth among the elite women. But Shields has a big chunk of time to make up if she wants to catch U25 GC leader Libby White (Colt Training Systems).

White was third on the day, behind Samantha Runnels (Colt Training Systems). “I’ve been OK, but my bike seems to not be able to be held together, but we’ve gotten through. I’m having so much fun doing this though. It’s my first mountain bike stage race ever.”

White and other young riders have been using this week as a fun training camp to get in tune for the rest of the season. “I’ve been doing a lot of long hours training, but it’s about drinking water, having fun, and not taking it too seriously. This is getting me ready for a fun summer of racing!”

While Payson McElveen continues to be counted with the elite men, some of the other Under 25 men are not far behind. Drew Dillman (Colt Training Systems) had a second-place overall time today, just four minutes off McElveen.

Announcement coming

Look for a big announcement coming out at the NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic on Saturday.

The NoTubes Trans-Sylvania Epic is made possible with the generous support of great partners like Pactimo, Lupine, Purple Lizard, Klean Kanteen, Dirt Rag, SRAM, Kona, BMC, ProGold, NUUN, Freeze Thaw Cycles and more!

Click Here for full results from stage 5

Click Here for GC results following stage 5