threat of precipitation helped dry the property and added a bit of traction . Twelve new sections greeted riders , continuing the theme of hill climbs from the previous day ’ s challenges .
The second section of the day started with yet another unstable hill climb , which proved to be too difficult for many riders of the lower lines . Upper classes had an initial six-foot rock to scale just inside the start gate , a run through a small rock garden , then a hill climb on the second half of the section . With the exception of the first loop of Josh Roper and Vertigo ’ s Karl Davis Jr ( on which they both scored 3 points ), this section proved to be extremely difficult , with maximum points earned on all three loops .
Section four was THE section of the day . Upper-class riders had to navigate a hill climb with a splatter onto a single large rock ; after navigating an off-camber turn at the top of the section , riders then rode back down the hill and attempted yet another large flat rock just before the exit gate .
On the first loop , organizer Logan Bolopue had a run-in with Daniel Blanc-Gonnet ’ s bike as Daniel attempted the splatter , resulting in a trip to the emergency room for stitches to his chin . He returned shortly thereafter , in great spirits and with a little less facial hair , to help continue checking his section .
“ I was worried about Logan ,” said Daniel . “ I felt really bad . In that section , I just started leaning to the left and spun on the take-off of this big splatter . I got to the top and started spinning and coming back down . Logan was one of the observers , and when he went to reach for it and catch me , I caught traction as I was falling backwards . When I let go of the bike , I accidentally popped the clutch and it caught traction somehow and backflipped into his face . I was a little bit on edge after that , and so the rest of the loop I was just surviving .”
The final rock in the section claimed a few more victims , with many Pro riders losing traction about halfway up . On his final loop of the day , Karl Davis Jr lost traction , leaving his bike to be caught by his talented minder , Luke Littlefield . On his dismount , Karl got turned around and ended up sliding down the hill on his stomach with his hand underneath him , injuring his thumb in the process .
“ Day two went a little better than day one ,” said Karl . “ I ’ m still dealing with injuries ; I separated my shoulder about a month and a half ago , and mentally I ’ m not really prepared to ride these sections or physically really . I was practicing the last few weeks and I still feel like practice translated over to the competitions just because it ' s a lot
VOL . 6 ISSUE 5 - MAY 2021 // PAGE 119