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Breck Epic – Day 3 diary by Brandon Dwight

It was another fabulous day on the trail in the inaugural Breck Epic. Today’s race course was another Colorado classic. Lung-busting climbs, ripping singletrack and spectacular views. Early in the race there was a train of us absolutely hammering a smooth, rolling section of trail and I thought to myself, 'this is way too much fun.' Then, of course, we hit the first climb. Then I thought to myself, 'this way too painful.'

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By Brandon Dwight

2009 Breck Epic, day 3: Great view of Breckenridge ski area today. Definitely not a powder day.

2009 Breck Epic, day 3: Great view of Breckenridge ski area today. Definitely not a powder day.

Photo: Brandon Dwight

It was another fabulous day on the trail in the inaugural Breck Epic. Today’s race course was another Colorado classic. Lung-busting climbs, ripping singletrack and spectacular views. Early in the race there was a train of us absolutely hammering a smooth, rolling section of trail and I thought to myself, ‘this is way too much fun.’ Then, of course, we hit the first climb. Then I thought to myself, ‘this way too painful.’

I’ve ridden consistently over the past few days and my bike has worked flawlessly. A bunch of us all pitched in some money and hired Garmin Slipstream mechanic, Daimeon Shanks, to work on our bikes this week. Daimeon didn’t need go across the pond this July and wrench for Garmin’s Tour de France squad, and we were lucky enough to bring him up to Breckenridge for the week. It’s so nice to finish a race, hand your dirty bike off and have it showroom clean and working like new the next morning. It saves a lot of time and energy. And, those of you who know me, know I am a horrible mechanic! I think Daimeon is enjoying himself a bit, too. He has been able to get in a good ride everyday thus far. Tour de France team mechanics do not ride bikes in July.

2009 Breck Epic, day 3: You have to be dang good mechanic to have your name on a sticker with orange and blue argyle

2009 Breck Epic, day 3: You have to be dang good mechanic to have your name on a sticker with orange and blue argyle

Photo: Brandon Dwight

Following today’s stage everyone was hanging out at the finish tent, eating cookies and fruit while cheering fellow riders as they came through the finish. It reminded me of a local race, where everyone is there to have a good time. No points to chase, no sponsorship obligations, no watt meters to download. It seems to me as though everyone is here because they want to experience something new on their bike. This was the whole reason I started mountain biking in the early nineties. Don’t get me wrong, I went through my phase of chasing points, sponsorship obligations and watt meter downloading back in the day, but I think all of that is what burned me out. It’s nice to have the old feeling back again.

Tomorrow’s stage looks tough. 42 miles with one major “hors categorie” climb, that peaks out just over 12,000 feet. Luckily it’s followed up by what appears to be a 15-mile descent! I can’t wait. The race promoters are calling this the Queen Stage for its beauty and brutality.

2009 Breck Epic, day 3: Dales Pale Ale. Now you can drink beer and save trails, too!

2009 Breck Epic, day 3: Dales Pale Ale. Now you can drink beer and save trails, too!

Photo: Brandon Dwight

Tonight’s beer review comes to you courtesy of Oskar Blues Brewery in Lyons, Colorado. Like the Upslope Ale I wrote about a few days ago, Dale’s Pale Ale comes in a can, which makes it great for camping and riding. Not that I would ever condone drinking beer while riding a mountain bike. No, never. I am reviewing this beer for its great taste and drinkability, but also because Oskar Blues and Dales Pale Ale are sponsoring the Breck Epic. In fact, Oskar Blues sponsors a plethora of cycling-related causes. From trail access to racer sponsorship, Oskar Blues and Dales Pale Ale understand mountain biking and why it’s such a great sport. Cheers!

I’ve gotten a great response from my recent pancake recipe, so I thought I offer you up a few more this week. This version is one of my favorites.

Buckwheat-Oat Pancakes with Blueberry Compote
Gluten free and low sugar (if you use agave nectar)

1c. buckwheat flour
½ c. oats
2 T. cornmeal
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
2 T agave nectar (can use maple syrup if you don’t have agave)
1 cup skim, rice, soy or almond milk
2 T canola oil (or 1 T oil and 1/4c. yogurt)
1 large egg

2009 Breck Epic, day 3:  These are not avaiable at IHOP.

2009 Breck Epic, day 3: These are not avaiable at IHOP.

Photo: Brandon Dwight

½ c. fresh or frozen blueberries

Combine dry ingredients, stir well. In separate bowl combine dry ingredients. Mix well. In the meantime heat blueberries in a small saucepan over medium high heat. Cook until the juices release in the blueberries. Serve pancakes with blueberry compote and fresh berries as a garnish.

Once again, thanks for reading!
Brandon Dwight lives in Boulder, Colorado, with his wife Heather and chocolate lab, Oban, and is part owner of Boulder Cycle Sport. He is also the founder of Doperssuck.com. His sponsors include: Scott Bicycles, Crank Brothers, and Clif Bar.

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