Week 5 of TGIF MTB series had riders on the Missoula XC course, descending through the gut. On this incredibly hot day, we still had over 40 riders racing on Marshall Mountain, and snacking on some amazing pretzels from this week’s sponsor, Grist Milling and Bakery. The giant pretzel, representing those fabulous post-race snacks from Grist, was the hit of the podium!
There were many show-and-go riders before the 4:30 mass start, including the Spoon sibling power duo and R1K’s Thunder and Hathaway in their matching Zwift series Poc Gloves. ZTD mass start had a strong lineup, with Bookwalter, Wilcox, the Lurgios, the Suduburys, and Daume to name a few.
The 6 pm mass start was packed with regulars, some taking it easier to give the following day’s Locals Only XC race their big effort; but this course is not forgiving, and that, along with the heat, made “easy” not much of an option. Mazza stood on the top podium for Men’s 1/2, followed by Fr. Kirby and Kenley, Mazza with a 5 minute lead, and Kirby and Kenley finishing exactly a minute apart.
Single speed men had two starters, Ryan M and Dirty Tim; one lap in had Tim in the lead, but the heat may have got the best of him, and he called it after one lap. This leaves the final race as an interesting one in this category, as it’s obviously close competition between these two.
Michela, Bridget, and Plant finished first, second, third for the Women’s Party category; Michela and Dworak’s second laps were both faster than their first laps, showing that 90+degree weather who’s boss. Missoula Bike Source swept the podium for Women’s Masters, with Linton, Ruland, and McAdams getting the top 3 times in that category.
Cameron Johnson, Mark Murphree, and Andrew Gutknecht also got to stand on the top step for their respective categories, big congrats to them for strong times.
Mammoths had the most riders who were planning on riding the Locals Only XC the following day, but that didn’t keep them off the podium. The gent’s top step was occupied by Sean Murphree, finishing both laps with a fast time of 37:36, followed by Elliot Hayhurst on the 2nd, and Miles Shefloe on the third step. Ladies had Aida Linton taking first, with Westenfelder and Davis intentionally keeping some gas in the tank for the following day’s race, but placing 2nd and 3rd nonetheless. Myla Spoon placed 4th, and all 4 of these Lady Mammoth riders raced 2 (3 for Westenfelder) days in a row. Nice work to all mammoth riders out there!