Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Fest a Real Ripper!

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Despite a week’s worth of downpours that left its signature ride at Soquel Demo Forest undoable, the first-ever Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival was a pounding success, capped with a near-endless raffle of $15,000 in giveaways at the Rio (is grand!) Theater.

I haven’t seen email or tweet from event maestro Mark Davidson and have to think he’s still sleeping it off. The guy was on his feet non-stop and spent more than an hour on-stage giving schwag away; he deserves a rest!

There was a day-long jump jam at Depot Park in Santa Cruz, booths with demo rides and cool gear, and lots of great folks from Bones Over Metal, Black Market Bikes, Titus and of course the sponsoring Mountain Bikers of Santa Cruz. It’s always great to be able to meet a tweep face2face — plus I got to see Fenriq’s (Erik Orgell’s) vintage Ibis Mojo hardtail up close (sheesh…I’d forgotten all about MORON tubing!).

LISA MYKLAK CRACKS UP THE AUDIENCE

A near-sellout of hooting, whistling, stomping, amped mtb fanz showed up for the California premiere of “Awesome Land — Women of Dirt” inside the Rio. And while the hour-long film didn’t disappoint, with jump and DH action, killer scenery and personal insights from the riders, my favorite part of the whole festival was the panel discussion afterward.

Karen Kefauver, who writes the Spin City column for the Santa Cruz Sentinel, tossed out intelligent questions and the ladies — Kathy Pruitt, Emily Johnston, Lisa Myklak and Tammy Donahugh (left to right on stage in video) — were not only insightful and forthcoming, they repeatedly cracked up the audience with over the top answers.

I caught a couple of the better moments on video. Miles Sullivan and Mark Brent (he’s the guy on the panel), “Women of Dirt” co-makers, were there filming as well and I’ll post their more professional version when it hits. Suffice it to say everyone had a rad time, and congratulations to MBOSC for hosting a memorable fest. We can’t wait till next year!

THE FUNNEST PART OF MOUNTAIN BIKING

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