Solomon Woras, right, and Cody Cupp racing for the Methow Cycle and Sport Blue Star Coffee team leave the starting line in the first heat of the men’s Pro/Open class in the 25-mile Loup Loup XC last weekend at the Loup Loup Ski Bowl. Equipment failure knocked Woras from the competition while Cupp crossed the finish line in second place. Photo by Mike Maltais
BY MIKE MALTAIS
Cody Cupp, Jake Whipple, Bryce Kipp, Dave Acheson and Solomon Woras riding for the Methow Cycle and Sport Blue Star Coffee team scored a first and three second-place finishes at the Loup Loup Mountain Challenge held at the Loup Loup Ski Bowl last Saturday and Sunday (June 29-30).
Cars and campsites were scattered throughout the parking area occupied by racers who arrived earlier in the week to check out the course and get some rack time before the weekend’s big events.
Kipp, 40, crossed the finish line first in the one lap Category 2 of the single speed event with a time of 1 hour, 33 minutes, 55.8 seconds.
Whipple, 38, took second in the two-lap Category 1 single speed in 2:33:33.9.
Woras did not finish the XC when a twisted chain knocked him from the competition.
Acheson, 44, tackled Sunday’s Lightning Enduro race and came in second among Category 2 men (35-44).
Cupp, 19, finished second among Pro/Open men with a time of 2:06:15 only six-tenths of a second behind the winner, a close race after 25 miles and 5,000 feet of climbing. The XC involved two laps of 12.5 miles each.
“The first lap found four of us all in a group,” Cupp said of his race strategy.
As the race entered the final of two loops, Cupp and another racer were close enough behind the lead rider that when the frontrunner blew a tire near the finish it was sprint to the wire for Cupp and the other competitor.
Acheson, 44, tackled Sunday’s Lightning Enduro race and came in second among Category 2 men.
Unlike Saturday’s two-lap XC course Sunday’s Enduro was billed as “a solid 35 miles with lots of climbing.”
The Enduro race featured three timed stages where riders in the Pro, Category 1 or Category 2 classes navigated a timed mostly descending course and then climbed an untimed connector leg to the next stretch of timed terrain.
“I crashed pretty hard in the first section,” Cupp said of his Enduro experience. The wreck injured his hip and cost him precious seconds on his way to a sixth-place finish.
Cupp, a sophomore at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colo., will compete in the remaining three events in the Fat Tire Revolution series of races at Greenwater and Roslyn, Wash., before returning to Colorado in August to compete as a member of the Fort Lewis Cycling Team.