Riddle me this...

30 May, 2012

Who landed top spots and why at the 2012 Spring Thaw DH? Checkout the podium, beginning with Nathan Riddle’s first-place set up!

[caption id="attachment_2337" align="alignleft" width="685" caption="2012 Spring Thaw DH Podium"][/caption]

1st - Nathan Riddle - 3.59.61 - WTB Mutano 2.4 AM/TCS front & rear tires + Volt saddle

2nd - Kiran MacKinnon - 3.59.66 - WTB Silverado saddle

3rd - Mark Weir - 4.00.88 - WTB Weirwolf 2.1 XC front & rear tires + Silverado saddle

5th - Ryan Condrashoff - 4.01.54 - WTB Nano 2.1 XC front & rear tires + Silverado saddle

[caption id="attachment_2345" align="alignleft" width="685" caption="Nathan Riddle pinning it to a first-place finish!"][/caption]

There’s no question that WTB/Santa Cruz rider, Nathan Riddle, had an exceptional downhill run out at this year’s Spring Thaw. Not only did he set a new course record, he bested his long-time friend and rival in the DH, Mark Weir, for bonafide KOM honors in spite of (or maybe because of) the healthy dose of heckling from Weir. "You passed on the XC this year that means you have to break the record," he said. Action speak louder than words, as they say and the rest is history and a new course record. So what did the “Riddler” do to secure the top spot on the podium?

[caption id="attachment_2324" align="alignleft" width="685" caption="Mark Weir, Team WTB/Cannondale/Fox"][/caption]

As for race strategy, Nathan jokingly acknowledged that getting his crashing out of the way during his one morning practice run seemed to help, adding that he chose one of the very short uphill sections of the course to crash! All jokes aside, he made special mention that while Spring Thaw “isn’t an overly technical course, it is a REALLY fast course where racers regularly hit 44-48 MPH on the ‘freeway’ section and sometimes hit 35+ in the singletrack through the big trees.”  He also noted that it’s a race where your choice in equipment matters, adding “You need tires that can hold a lean angle at speed, drift predictably, and hook up when it’s time to sprint.”

Nathan's choice for the “dust over crust” course conditions was critical, noting, “My Mutanos hooked up very predictably with the decomposed granite soil and rolled nice & fast everywhere else.”

[caption id="attachment_2340" align="alignleft" width="685" caption="2012 Solar eclipse"][/caption]

So how about that solar eclipse! Nice way to polish off an otherwise epic weekend in Ashland, where it's just a shame to suffer in a place that's so beautiful!

Cheers to Echelon Events for another great event. See ya'all next year!

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