August 30 Finale Recap

The 2011 Over the Hump Mountain Bike Race Series presented by Verizon is in the books, and it was a GOOD ONE! The finale, of like all good finales, was the final cherry on top of a perfectly great show to begin with.

There are so many stories to tell, and epic battles fought out on the course, I’m not sure how to start or which ones to leave off so they will actually fit on a page. For sure the pictures Frank Villalvazo took last night will give a better summary than limping words trying to describe it all.

With at least 900 spectators and 400 racers the finale was a stage set for some great competition. 40 exhibitors and sponsors encircled the exhibit area, all enjoying the energy and pomp and circumstance of a Grande Finale like we experienced at Irvine Lake. This year’s had even more energy than last year. Truly the best thing about Over the Hump, in John’s and my perspective, is that Over the Hump feels like family. Lots of competition, but lots of fun, hugs, and celebration every week. I’m sure if half of the podium boys and girls could have pulled their supporters up on the hay-bails doubling as a podium, the entire audience would have been up on the podium throughout the night.

The Sport Two Guys kicked off a 1,2,3 finish all wearing the Verizon Leader Jersey at the start tied with points, and in the end coming down to a tie breaker that ended up being settled by there most 1sts, then seconds, etc. Bill Pointer was 1st, Joel Albrecht 2nd, and Daniel Digiacomo 3rd. Bill gave kuddos to both his rivals and truly shared exactly 431 points with 2nd place Joel Albrecht.

In  the newly added Farmers & Merchant Single Speed class, it had been battled out all season long between Heath Masters and Eric Williams, but came down to the final race as well. Where Eric wore the Verizon Leader Jersey out, and ended up keeping it on his shoulders for the finale.

Sean Smith (center) says thanks to Linked Cycling Volunteers, after Mike Telega of Oakley (right) presented the OAKLEY Jupiter Award

Among other festivities we honored Sean Smith as the Oakley Jupiter Award Recipient, for his inspiration as the impetus behind Linked Cycling volunteering to lead our kids race every week, and his valor as a man bailing his bike mid-race on June 21, to help an injured rider to safety after a crash mid-race. Without Linked  and Smith’s efforts throughout the season we would not have had a functional kids race 12 races in the 2011 summer. Oakley was onsite in a big way to present the award.

 

 

 

 

 

 

And then we of course ended the night with a bang up sensational celebration of all of our winners for the summer. Series leaders through 3rd place collected the best of 9 races, and then took to the podium so in a huge tribute to the racers who raced and won we celebrate them all. Juniors through Pros:

 
GIRLS OPEN JUNIORS Racer Age Team
1st Place Danielle Emter 14
2nd Place Ashlie Cooper 15 Simple Green/Cycles
3rd Place Xlena Hoppen 12
 
BOYS OPEN JUNIORS Racer Age Team
1st Place James Bustamante 15
2nd Place Sean Bell 13 Oakley/Fox
3rd Place Nico Neuville 13
 
WOMEN’S BEGINNER Racer Age Team
1st Place Dina Graham 44
2nd Place Jan Ackerman 51 SHO-AIR/Rock n Road
3rd Place Samantha Adams 31
 
WOMEN’S SPORT Racer Age Team
1st Place Amy Griffin 26
2nd Place Meghan Guerero 17
3rd Place Wendy Villegas 35 TPR
 
WOMEN’S EXPERT PRO Racer Age Team
1st Place Christine Gray 51 Trek San Diego
2nd Place Amanda Schaper 27 Ritte
3rd Place Liz Miller 24 Incycle
 
MEN’S BEGINNER 1 Racer Age Team
1st Place Laurence Maftei 20 Trek San Diego
2nd Place David Skeeters 27 ASG/TWOP
3rd Place Kirt Smith 28
 
MEN’S BEGINNER 2 Racer Age Team
1st Place Michael Russell 29
2nd Place Corey Demanty 34
3rd Place Karl Lowry 40
 
MEN’S BEGINNER 3 Racer Age Team
1st Place Craig Mitchell 48
2nd Place Scott Mellusi 39 Surf City Cyclery
3rd Place David Holtman 45 Fullerton Bikes
 
MEN’S BEGINNER 4 Racer Age Team
1st Place James Scribner 50
2nd Place John Ganahl 66
3rd Place Martin Craty 51 Surf City Cyclery
 
MEN’S SPORT 1 Racer Age Team
1st Place Aubrey Smentkowski 15
2nd Place Ben Franchi 28
3rd Place Pavel Prilutskikh 20 Troupe Racing Co
 
MEN’S SPORT 2 Racer Age Team
1st Place Bill Pointer 37 ocrider.com/Fullerton
2nd Place Joel Albrecht 38 OC Riders
3rd Place Daniel Digiacomo 32 Allied/REVO
 
MEN’S SPORT 3 Racer Age Team
1st Place Chad Palessiro 41 Rock n Road
2nd Place Randy Houston 47 WIN-TEAM RACING
3rd Place Greg Wolfe 41
 
MEN’S SPORT 4 Racer Age Team
1st Place George Logan 53 Team Duke
2nd Place Mark Dooley 53 Cycles Veloce
3rd Place Craig Erion 57 OC Riders
 
MEN’S SUPER SPORT Racer Age Team
1st Place Jeremiah Smith 32 Fullerton Bikes
2nd Place Kevin Mehrens 31 Shoair/Rock n Road
3rd Place Daniel Eitman 38
 
SINGLE SPEED BY F&M BANK Racer Age Team
1st Place Eric Williams 30 Team Thunderbolt
2nd Place Heith Masters 35 WIN-TEAM RACING
3rd Place Jon Arthur 45
 
MEN’S EXPERT Racer Age Team
1st Place Peter Smith 35
2nd Place Griffith Vertican 33 JAX Bicycles
3rd Place Matt Snow 25 Surf City Cyclery
 
MEN’S PRO Racer Age Team
1st Place Brandon Gritters 31 Rock n Road
2nd Place Anton Petrov 26 SDG/Felt
3rd Place Eric Bierman 36 Steven K Sports

As you’ve heard us say, and we truly believe, Over the Hump is a total blessing (particularly to us). To walk (ride) life with an amazing group of people, and get to play with bikes and friends on Tuesday Nights all summer long is truly John’s and my privilege. So thanks for honoring us, by joining our Family of Over the Hump.

In a quick tribute a special thanks belongs to: Verizon the 2011 Presenting Sponsor, and all of our sponsors.

Orange County Parks, Irvine Ranch Conservancy, our friend Adam Maywhort, and Irvine Lake. Without their efforts, permits, land use, support, manpower, and equipment we could not have pulled off a race that we think (along with Mountain Bike Action Magazine) makes the SoCal Riding Community a better place.

Here’s to a great summer and another season of Over the Hump that rocked the world (at least ours!).

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