Today's third stage of the BC Bike Race was a power course with constant pedaling so as you'd expect, there was a lot of toggling between 90mm travel Flow and 150mm Elevate mode from the OverMountain team of Mark Weir and Jason Moschler, who are proving the overall effectiveness of the all new Cannondale Jekyll.
But, there's more to just adjusting your attitude when you're part of the best all mountain team in the world. It's also about looking sharp out there. That's why Cannondale picked BCBR to introduce the all-new OverMountain team garb, exclusively worn by the boys. Just like a brand new Cannondale BallisTec carbon frame, the primarily black kit represents a new look and a new era for everyone involved. "It's a refreshing change to be able to start a new partnership with Cannondale and it also represents a new beginning for us as ambassadors and racers," said Weir. All factory teams racers get the solid black treatment with green highlights with OverMountain getting their own unique sponsors added like WTB, FOX Racing Shox, Shimano, EAS and Camelbak. Additionally, it's Cannondale's plan to make these available to the public.
Now on to stage 3 action. It stared out with a road climb which both Jason and Mark kept it in Elevate mode the entire time. It worked so well in fact that Mark started to drop Jason as they climbed.
"I kept noodling along with the lead group so I figured it best to take a wrong turn with a few head-down meatballs and go off course," said Weir. After about 30 guys went by Jason came up and were reunited on the singletrack. At that point Jason and Mark stared to pick up the pace and were picking off riders one by one, closing to only five minutes behind the leaders by check point one.
Blasting down a rough singletrack in super tender Flow mode and riding a bridge no one else was they ended up going right instead of left (left was where the course went by the way.) "We saw no tire tracks so we figured everyone was walking it but suddenly Jason realized we were going the wrong way so we had to turn around," said Weir. "That kind of blew up Jason so we lost a places on course as a result but still retained our fifth overall in the GC."
The Jekyll worked great on a course that was rougher and more difficult than expected. Besides using Flow and Elevate, the 15mm thru axles at the suspension pivot points added extra stiffness and reliability, a little trick Cannondale calls center stiffness. It adds so much stiffness that every movement by the rider is directed at moving the bike forward; crucial when rooty rocky sections can be ridden with pump track precession. "In some of the really rooted sections it was again easy to ride it like a pump track and just pump the sections, settling into the travel and using minimal energy to go fast," said Jason.
During the course of the day there were a few really steep, rooted chutes so according to the team it was great to flick the switch to Flow, slack out the geometry and point and shoot down the drops as they chased back into contention.
Overall the day worked out well thanks to some very effective bikes and riders. Tomorrow is the hardest and longest day of the race so stay tuned.