Mountain bikers finish off Vail race series season with Beaver Creek Blast | VailDaily.com

Mountain bikers finish off Vail race series season with Beaver Creek Blast

BEAVER CREEK — So how many soft tacos can a bunch of hungry racers down after cycling around Beaver Creek?

The highly unscientific answer is a lot.

The adult riders of the Vail Recreation District's East West Destination Hospitality Mountain Bike Race Series gathered for the final time on Wednesday with the Beaver Creek Blast.

Believe it or not, the leaves are starting to turn.

"Starting to," Shauna Nelson said. "I noticed a little bit of orange and yellow."

"I was staring at my handle bars the entire time," Kyle Wilcox joked when asked about the foliage.

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The more expert divisions left Beaver Creek heading up Strawberry Hill to Bachelor Gulch to Arrowhead coming back by Village to Village. Then it was up to Red Tail and over to Allie's Cabin before heading down to the finish.

"Beaver Creek feels like it's uphill both ways," Wilcox said. "It's a shame. (The summer's) so short. But our town series is really good. We always enjoy coming out for it."

Season really Over?

Of course, as Bluto Blutarsky said in "Animal House," "Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?"

No way.

While the VRD adult season is over, racers still have their plans. The high school season starts on Saturday up in Frisco, and Bayli McSpadden is one of several locals ready to go. She was racing in the U18 sport category.

Wilcox is off to the Steamboat Stage Race during Labor Day weekend. Nelson is competing at Xterra nationals in Ogden, Utah. There will also be tons of trips to Moab, Utah, and other pilgrimages westward if history is any indication.

"It was a great year for participation," the Vail Recreation District's Beth Pappas said. "For the first year in a long time, we didn't have to reschedule for weather. Given some of the Wednesday forecasts this year, it was pretty miraculous. It's always fun to see the mountain-bike community come out and it's a little bit bittersweet when we come to the last race."

The good news is, for the kids, the series is not over. The Minturn Mini Back-to-School Bash is next week.

Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, cfreud@vaildaily.com and @cfreud.