August 31 Finale Wrap up

400 racers line up at the start (photos courtesy Frank Villalvazo)

It’s bitter sweet!  Sweet as we had a seriously epic season… and bitter to say goodbye to the season as it is now behind us.  We’ve made new friends, enjoyed racing, and are passionate about the sport of mountain biking. The entire summer is a total highlight in our short Over the Hump history.

A year ago, we sat down and dreamed up our mission: Over the Hump- a race for everyone, beginners to experienced racers. A fun-family-friendly, fun, but competitive event that would allow people to experience mountain bike racing in Orange County. Midweek-after work, and close to home.  Over the Hump was born, and this week’s race was a huge testimony to the fact that all of us, racers, volunteers and staff, have bought the vision.

Working backwards, the race was the season finale, a great show of 30+ exhibitors and sponsors, followed by our awards ceremony, recognizing our top 3 racers in each category (16 total categories).  The cherry on top was the smiles on all the faces, and the numerous comments of … “what are we going to do until next summer’s series”. Of course that pasted a smile to our faces.  Smiles that made it all worth it…it was a ball! Recognizing all the racers, who worked so hard, was the most fun for us.

Tinker Juarez and Sid Taberlay led out the pack of Pros

Every week for the second half of the season OTH has a kids race, right before the “Main Event”.  Volunteers have literally owned the kids race, from lead riders, to scorers to prize giveaways.  The Linked Team, got behind the race in a big way, along with many other individual volunteers all season long. This week’s winner was: Ryan Goodwin (6 years old), in  a field of 5 to 10 year olds.

Tuesday night brought a cool breeze to the lake, and a consistently dropping water level introduced some extra beach to our course and a new front row spectator area, right on the edge of the water.  In attendance were our nearly 400 racers, hundreds of  fans, family and friends, lining the course, and loads of private and professional photographers immortalizing the moment.

Tinker Juarez and Sid Taberlay led out the pack as the pros took off! In the mix were Sid Taberlay (Sho-Air/Specialized and H2o Overdrive), “Tinker” Juarez (Cannondale), Dana Weber (Trek), and David Santos (KS), leading the rest of the field out. Teams and individuals from all over Southern California joined the party too.  Unlike most mountain bike races we were happy to see hundreds of racers in t-shirts, Camelbacks riding  entry level bikes, meaning the most important dream of our little “race around the lake” had come true…” a race for everyone, beginner to experienced racer.”

As the masses rolled through, some even came out with serious personality, wearing rubber duckies, wigs, and vintage t-shirts, vintage bikes with chrome and coaster brakes…after playing all season long at “serious racing” some of our regulars decided it was time to get a photo opportunity.

Every week a bulk of our race support each week has come from shops…this week, all of our supporting bike shops were out in full force, along with family, friends rallying for one last go around on the course.  And it was a busy night for them, as we had 170 onsite registrations, some serious t-shirt closeout sales, and a truckload of thousands of dollars of product to distribute to our series winners, with their trophies, and leaders jerseys.

I’ve done some perusing of STR this week, and reading the race reviews, it’s like getting a first hand view from a helmet cam on a racers bike…along with a snowball of other perspectives.  Literally the recurrent theme is….”loved it!  I’ll be back. Can’t wait till next year. I never knew racing could be so fun”.

The race course was full  with nearly 400 racers on the course, our little 4.5 mile course took on a life of its own. The kind of traffic that makes for fast competition on the flats and downhills, and challenging singletrack negotiation.  Most of the riders were able to make moves in the flats. Sid Taberlay told me his secret on the closed course with varying levels.  “I would sprint when the course opened up, and get out front when I could. Then when the traffic slows you down, everyone else gets stuck in the same traffic I do.” Worked for Sid, when the race was over, even with the elite bike racers in the group, Sid finished 38 seconds in front of our series winner David Santos, and 3+ minutes ahead of 4th place.

You can check out all of the evening results from Tuesday night’s race at .

Along with the race series finishes (top 3 from each category posted below) we recognized one racer in particular, that embodies the spirit of over the Hump.  Sam Tamura was our most inspiration racer for the season (though there were tons of inspirational riders). Sam started riding in October 2009.  Entered the beginner category this summer, with 8 months riding experience.  We moved him to the  Sport after three races, because he was gapping the Beginners in his class by over two minutes every race. After Sam moved to sport he only had 9 races left to capture series points, in the Sport category, for the season.  He was able to race 8 of the 9 races (had to miss one due to travel). Of those he finished in the top 10 four times (including Tuesday). Same was rewarded with a very nice Blast wheelset from Novatech, who supported OTH as an exhibitor this season.  Sam said after the race, “Over the Hump became the highlight of my week, even to the point where I rearranged my work travel schedule so I could be here.  Some weeks it was the only ride I got it in.  I had a great time and met so many new friends.” Sam may need to sign an endorsement agent for next year, because he’s the perfect OTH poster racer! Lots of heart and a big smile. Congratulations on being our Most Inspirational Racer Sam.

Sam Tamura 2010 OTH Most Inspirational Racer

In looking back on the series, we couldn’t have had as wild a race, with the huge level of support, and prizes as we did without our sponsors. We’d like to take a moment to recognize those sponsors and encourage you, the racers to support these sponsors. Not only do they have great products and services, but they also got involved in a way that through their efforts and financial contributions made a 12 race series possible.

John presenting Chris, from Verizon, with the Verizon Leader Jersey

Verizon- Presenting Sponsor

H2O Overdrive- Gold Sponsor
Specialized- Gold Sponsor

Other sponsors include: Crank Brothers, Oakley, SDG Components, Silver Sage Advisors, Two Brothers  Racing, Kawasaki, and each of our featured bicycle shops Rock N’ Road Cyclery, Jax Bicycle Center, The Path Bike Shop, Bike Religion, Surf City Cyclery, and Incycle.  Please click their links below or on the sponsor page to support them.

It’s been a great season. Fantastic! Amazing actually!  We are so proud to be a part of this Orange County racing culture. It is only fitting to end the season acknowledging those who have raced so hard! Congratulations to the 2010 Over the Hump Mtb race Series Winners:

Girls Juniors (age 11 to 15 yrs)
1   Liliana Rehorn, Mission Viejo
2   Danielle Emter, Foothill Ranch
3   Newara Brosnan Faltas, Aliso Viejo

Boys Juniors (age 11 to 15 yrs)
1   J.d. Hentzen, Laguna Niguel
2   Ben Bennett, Santa Ana
3   Zachary Frohock, Trabuco Canyon

Womens Beginner (all ages)
1   Elise Wallace, Orange
2   Deborah Ford, Newport Beach
3   Namtran Nguyen, Fountain Valley

Mens Beginner 4 (ages 50 and over)
1   Paul Jaramillo, La Habra
2   Chuck Miller, Fountain Valley
3   William Stone, Cypress

Mens Beginner 3 (ages 40-49)
1   Greg Wolfe, Fullerton
2   Bow Lemp, Mission Viejo
3   John Lenell, Newport Beach

Mens Beginner 2 (ages 30-39)
1   Chris Griffin, La Habra
2   Joshua Powers, Tustin
3   Torey Payne, San Clemente

Mens Beginner 1 (ages 29 and under)
1   Tyler Nail, San Juan Capistrano
2   Benjamin Franchi, Huntington Beach
3   Christopher Hayden, Santa Ana

Womens Sport (all ages)
1   Wilhelmina Zuckerman, Orange
2   Amy Griffin, La Habra
3   Hilary Mann, Dana Point

Mens Sport 4 (ages 50 and over)
1   Dale Raymond, Corona
2   Geof Sanberg, Lake Forest
3   Donald Jackson, Mission Viejo

Mens Sport 3 (ages 40-49)
1   Derek Nye, Costa Mesa
2   Alex Suchey, Rancho Cucamonga
3   Darin Tanikawa, Irvine

Mens Sport 2 (ages 30-39)
1   James Metcalfe, Santa Ana
2   Jeffrey Lewis, Tustin
3   John Dang, Garden Grove

Mens Sport 1 (ages 29 and under)
1   Josh Kompa, Trabuco Canyon
2   Paul Greve, Lake Forest
3   Alex Milewski, San Clemente

Womens Expert (all ages)
1   Lisa Crowe, Redlands
2   Leslie Williams, Ladera Ranch
3   Kym Slingerland, Orange

Mens Expert (all ages)
1   Jason Rusnak, Lake Forest
2   Ryan Cox, San Juan Capistrano
3   Craig Hopps, Mission Viejo

Mens Pro (all ages)
1   David Santos, El Cajon
2   Jason Siegle, Costa Mesa
3   Doug Andrews, Mission Viejo

We had a great time, and can’t wait for more to come. Stay posted we’ll have other races between now and next summer, but mark your calendar, Over the Hump 2011 kicks off on Tuesday nights in May, for twelve more races and a whole round of new stories.

THANK YOU! from us…John Russell, Matt Wenger, and the OTH Team!  See you on the trail.


  • By Paul Jaramillo - on Reply

    A really fun tough series, as this was my first time doing any kind of organized mountain biking. I was really stoked to pull off the win for the B4 old guy class. Props to Chuck Miller! as it could have gone either way between us for the overall, I just got lucky and nudged him out by 1 point! Thanks you guys, had a great time. and really looking forward to next summer!
    Paul Jaramillo

    PS Do I have to move up a class now?…just wondering…

  • By John Ganahl - on Reply

    Response to Paul Jaramillo: Yes the top three in the B4 catagory have to move up to the S4 catagory. From John Ganahl 4th place in the B4 catagory!!!

    Great racing and it was neat to be competing against the same guys each week and make many new mt biking friends especially Mitch Zehner. We were only one point apart going into the last race and almost as expected we were literally racing side by side sprinting to the finish to determine 4th place.

    Great series and I would say this was the highlight of my summer except that I got married this summer and my new wife might see this so I will say that the Over the Hump series was the the second place highlight of my summer!!

  • By brody - on Reply

    im not shure if eny buddy would know but i am wundering were the beast priced free rideing bike would be. Also if there are eny teams looking for a 15 year old rider i have been rideing sense i was 2. I can ride eny trail in wood canyon rideing arya and would love to ride for a team. the type of rideing i do is cross cuntry and down hill. To contact me u can shoot an email to this adress thank you for you help.

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