The organizers of the Phat Wednesday Downhill Series haven't turned anyone away yet, but with 225 riders on June 27, 220 on June 20 and 220 at the season opener on June 13 — and theoretical cap of 200 riders for each race, they are asking riders to register early and get up to the start so they can get everyone down before dark.
The June 27 race took part on a trilogy of trails known as "The Oriental Express" — a mix of Ninja Cougar, Karate Monkey and Samurai Pizza Cat. For good measure, the race also included the Ho Chi Min trail.
This week Tyler Morland topped the Male Open category with a time of 3:34.99, followed by Nick Geddes in 3:35.84 and Simon Buzacott in 3:36:46. Geddes now holds the series lead as the only athlete on the podium in all three events, placing third the first week and second in weeks two and three.
Rounding out the top 10 this week were Trev Burke in 3:37.10, Cameron Allonby in 3:38.95, Craig Evans and Denis Courchesne in 3:39.18, Adam Billinghurst in 3:41.31, Stephen Matthews in 3:41.38 and Berend Boer in 3:42.85. There were 137 racers in the category.
Sarah Leishman won the women's race in 3:59.48, followed by Katrina Strand in 4:04.91 and Emily Slaco in 4:10.75. Leishman was second the first two weeks to lead the standings, and with five events remaining (including the race that took place on July 4) had an 80 point lead in the women's standings.
Rounding out the top 10 were Carrie Meltzer in 4:14.67, Pat Moreno in 4:15.25, Maria Darquier in 4:16.93, Trish Bromley in 4:18.72, Simmone Lyons in 4:20.48, Rachelle Frazer in 4:24.30 and Christina Chappetta in 4:26.14. There were 34 women in the category.
In Master Male, Chris Dewar posted a time of 3:41.86, followed by Robin Potvin in 3:44.12 and Andrew Gunn in 3:44.67. The top 10 included Mark Robertson in 3:44.84, Mathieu Hebert in 3:45.00, Dom Wrapson in 3:51.25, Corrie Mullin in 3:51.54, Alan Golds in 3:53.12, Luke Radnor in 3:53.55, Steve Storey in 3:55.07 and Richard Bedford in 3:56.44.
Jack Iles got the best of Zander Geddes in Junior Male with an incredibly close race. Iles finished in 3:37.36, while Geddes was second in 3:37.87. Geddes held onto the series lead, however, winning the first two races. Third place went to Adison Macdonald in 3:51.05.
In the top 10 were Bracken Camilleri in 3:55.06, Brad Jansen in 4:07.12, Felix Burke 4:09.75, Alex Auger in 4:15.41, Spencer Wight in 4:15.59, Max Buchan in 4:15.60 and Braden Metza in 4:22.19.
There were two junior female racers this week, with Holly Feniak placing first in 3:56.96, followed by Ava Buchan in 4:48.21.
As always, the really big winners were the ones walking away with draw prizes. Greg Walker won the Sram drive train, Gareth Dyer the Truvativ cranks, Robert Buchan the Avid brakes, Sarah Hogg and Jackson Bathgate the Maxxis tires, Braden Metza the Kali Helmet, Ryan Boston the Rock Shox fork and Jack Iles the Rock Shox Reverb seat post.
Results from the July 4 race will be posted next week. Future Phat Wednesday dates are July 11, July 18, Aug. 1 and Aug. 29. To race you need to be a member of the Whistler Off-Road Cycling Association (www.worca.com), have a valid pass to use the bike park (discounted passes are available for racers) and chip in a $2 entry fee, which goes to the top rider in your category. For more, visit whistlerbike.com.