Plummer, Davis complete perfect seasons in Vail Beaver Creek Series
BEAVER CREEK, Colorado – Upon further review, local cyclist Jay Henry is mortal and not a flesh-eating cyborg who pedals on a stationary bike while sleeping.
Josiah Middaugh ended Henry’s chances of a perfect 6-for-6 2009 Vail-Beaver Creek Mountain Bike Series in the men’s pro division by taking Wednesday’s Beaver Creek Blast.
Middaugh finished in 1 hour, 10 minutes and 23 seconds, 1 minute ahead of Henry.
“I think for the last decade, it’s been Jay Henry’s shop,” Middaugh said.
Actually, it just seems like that because of his recent dominance. Henry had won nine in a row in the series, dating back to last year’s Berry Creek Bash when Ross Schnell took top honors.
While Henry didn’t ring up the magical sixth win, Adam Plummer (men’s vet expert) and Peter Davis (men’s masters) did complete perfect seasons.
In all fairness to the men’s pro field in this year’s series, Henry had just been on a tear, making wins every other week seem rather predictable. Jake Wells had a great year, only to be overshadowed by The Henry Show.
In the end though, Middaugh reeled in Henry. While the course was new to the field for 2009 – the higher divisions went from Beaver Creek to Arrowhead and back – it was familiar to Middaugh, who had done most of it during the Xterra Mountain Cup triathlon last month.
“I felt pretty good today. It’s a good course for me,” Middaugh said. “It’s a lot like the Xterra course that I did, so I knew it really well. I just thought if I could stay with Jay on the climbs, I thought maybe I could get him on Village to Village, where it was kind of a false flat.”
It also helped that Middaugh’s schedule worked out. He’s missed some of this summer biking races because of his commitments to the Xterra circuit, where he is blossoming. He’s been in the top three of every Xterra race he’s entered with nationals in Ogden, Utah, on Sept. 26.
Like many of the pro athletes in the series, he used this year’s mountain-bike series as training, and with a little more than two weeks off from Xterra – read, rest – Middaugh was in a groove.
“These bike races have been good for my training. This has improved my biking a lot,” he said. “I don’t think I’ve ever beat Jay on the bike.”
At the awards ceremony, Henry warmly congratulated Middaugh. Henry can console himself with the fact that he still brought home the men’s pro overall title for the season.
Plummer and Davis took opposite road to perfection this summer. For Plummer, it was all about building a base of miles early in the season. For Davis, it was about building an addition to his house.
“Coming into the season, I was not very confident about my level of fitness because I was very busy,” Davis said. “I put in an addition on my house. I had a lot of stuff going on. The amazing thing is that I’ve had back trouble for the last few years and by not riding at all and not doing much over the winter, maybe that was a good thing.”
Not only did the two have to battle their competitors but it’s also difficult to be ready for race day. Plummer, who had put in some heavy training as of late for this month’s Leadville 100, said he was not feeling strong at all Wednesday.
“Today was a surprise,” Plummer said. “I’ve been doing a lot of training for the Leadville 100. I’ve had some tough days and I’m not rested, so it was a suffer-fest today.”
Meanwhile in men’s masters, Davis held off Dawes Wilson and Dudley Duel for his season win. In fact, the latter was likely Davis’ stiffest challenge. Duel mistakenly was awarded the win in the season-opening Eagle Classic before the Vail Recreation District straightened the results out.
“I saw Dudley today. He was out there. He’s still going,” Davis said. “We’ve actually become very good friends. He’s a great dude.”
And if you see Davis outside this winter working on his house, he’s just getting ready for 2010.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Division Wednesday’s race Season
Men’s pro Josiah Middaugh Jay Henry
Women’s pro Gretchen Reeves Reeves
Men’s expert Jake White White
Women’s expert Julie Morrow Pavan Krueger
Men’s vet exp. Adam Plummer Plummer
Women’s vet exp. Ann Krieg Roxanne Hall
Men’s masters Peter Davis Davis
Men’s sport Brian Baker Joseph Mullins
Women’s sport Tara Picklo Jenny Klingmueller
Men’s vet sport Scott Rodgers Scott Leslie
Men’s beginner Roger Cardoza Kyle Hagnerry
Women’s beg. Tamara Donelson Lindsey Griffin
Singlespeed Travis Colbert Jay Kocks
Clydesdales Chris Kehoe Kehoe
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