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Baker, Cook endure


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In the women’s race, Canadian Junior Downhill Champion Brook Baker built a healthy lead to finish more than three minutes ahead of the next competitor. By the end of the day, she had made a total of ten laps of the park.

As a competitive cross-country racer as well as a downhiller, she enjoyed the uphill sections of the course more than other riders but not the transition between the two styles.

"The first part was uphill and flat, and I was going full out for that part of the course. But by the time I got to the jumps on A-Line, I was like ‘whoah, slow down’. I was pretty shaky. You don’t have any time to recover from the uphill climb and it was pretty weird to go from one riding style to another like that. It’s two different mind sets."

Baker was happy with the way she rode for the most part, keeping pace with a competitive group of guys. "They didn’t pass me, and I passed a few guys on the course, so I’m pretty happy about that," she said.

"I’m improving every time I ride. The worlds (mountain bike world championships) helped me to improve a lot."

Baker will be competing in both cross-country and downhill events next season at the provincial and national level, and hopes to represent Canada at the 2003 World Championships.

Baker was followed by Kaz Boelema and Sonya George, who completed ten laps each.

In the recreational category for junior riders, Ryan Sullivan won the day with ten laps. Gage Allard was second and Matthew Lawton third with nine laps apiece.

The winners in each category received a Whistler Mountain Bike Park pass for next season, which opens on May 17, 2003. In addition, Mike Tolbridge of Bellingham, Washington, won the draw prize of a pair of a Marzocchi Junior T fork, courtesy of Whistler Marzocchi.

All the proceeds from this year’s enduro event will go towards WORCA programs.

In the future, WORCA hopes to grow the event into a downhill version of the eight hour and 24-hour enduro events currently held for cross-country riders. In the next few years, with the cooperation of Whistler-Blackcomb, they are looking into extending the length of the event and adding team divisions.

The Max Vert Enduro was part of the Harvest Huckfest to celebrate a successful season the last closing weekend for the bike park.

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