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Matt Ryan tops Gearjammer race

Whistler rider was second last year but six minutes ahead of runner up in 2009



A second try in a row was a charm for Whistler rider Matt Ryan, who grabbed a slim win in Saturday's Gearjammer race with a time of 2 hours, 25 minutes, 48.99 seconds.

The last of the Squamish Triple Crown races after Ore Crusher and Test of Metal, Gearjammer is a rough, technical race with rocks and roots aplenty that's 52 km from start to finish with over 40 km of singletrack racing. Hundreds of riders braved this year's race with 233 finishing in just under six hours, while another 27 didn't finish.

Ryan came in second in last year's race but this year took more time than last year's race, where he crossed the finish line in 2:23:16. Dwayne Kress of Garibaldi Highlands followed him in this year's race, coming in at 2:31:48.78.

Last year's race promoted the terrain as 47 km, but GPS analysis of this year's route showed it to be closer to 52 km, although it was basically the same course as the previous year.

The course started at Alice Lake Provincial Park, including sections of about two dozen trails in the area. Racers then sprinted up a forest service road to the Squamish Off-Road Cycling Association's shelter near Cliff's Corners.

From there the riders come through sections of Rock 'n' Roll, Dead End Loop and Made in the Shade, then turned on to the Bob McIntosh trail.

A rip down that trail brings you back to the forest service road you started on. From there you go to Mike's Loop and ride to the top of the hill. You then make a careful descent down Mice and Men hill and then ride Tracks from Hell out to Mashiter.

You make a sharp left off the main road at the Drink Station and then on to a former logging road that'll bring you to the base of Skookum, Squamish's top single-track climb.

Through the trees you arrive at the top of Middle Power Smart, then make a left down into the same run and some cross country technical downhill, then finally across some log bridges to head down the IMBA Smart section.

Throughout the rest of the trail you hit the top and bottom sections of Pseudo Tsuga, then to the Ring Creek Rip and the Powerhouse Plunge before hitting the Crumpit Woods trails. A little later the riders hit Seven Stitches, Summer's Even and Raven's Plateau in Valleycliffe before the final selection of trails and the finish at Rose Park.

Category results saw Matthew Green, Kelly Servinski, Joshua Scott, Simon Tremblay and Dustin Gordon round out the male elite category in that order.

Garibaldi Highlands rider Stacey Spencer came out on top in Female Elite with a time of 3:08:00, followed by Karen Trueman, Linda Robichaud, Megan Rose and Nicole Kelly. Julie Tennock topped the Female 45-49 category with 3:34:38.36, followed by Penny Cameron with 3:35:40.11.

Female Under 20 results saw Jessica Marquis as the only finisher, coming in at 4:18:40. Male Under 20 had Mo Lawrence come out on top with a time of 2:34:38.25, followed by Jesse Melamed in 2:52:25.91.

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