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  1. #26
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    Vibes to family and friends.
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  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsavery View Post
    However, I've seen a bunch of enduro races that seem like mainly downhill races that aren't run on a ski hill (or sometimes are). Hell at the recent EWS race in France weren't they using chairlifts the whole time? My point is that while this accident sounds like a freak occurrence, the stakes and getting higher, riders faster and the courses seem to be getting rougher and favoring the downhill type bikes. It's fine if that's where enduro racing is going to this basically mini-downhill race. But it's going to result in being less of an "everyman's" sport and more injuries are going to happen and I think it may turn off a segment of riders.
    Yeah, not relevant to this freak accident, of course, but we were talking about this the prior weekend in Crested Butte. A buddy (who enjoys racing enduros but is out due to fitness issues this year) commented after riding Captain Jack that if he was racing this year, he did not feel comfortable with the idea of racing it. He also brought up how shaken he was, a few years ago, when he saw, from the lift, someone break their femur on Avery during practice. I also witnessed, in the lift line, a few of the top pro teams from various countries discussing strategies and techniques on how to handle the technicality of several of the features on Jack. There's definitely a line that's being crossed. And maybe not at the pro level, but at the amateur level, it's causing past competitors to reconsider racing. I think it's tough to balance between what promotes the format and what hurts it. Obviously the gnarlier tracks that are lift accessible are better for spectators and race coverage media, and at least some of the competitors love it, but if that causes other potential competitors to pass...? It's a good question and a solid topic for discussion.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by flowtron's ghost View Post
    PureGravity, when you have to preface your question with "due respect"...you probably shouldn't ask it.

    There were people from all over the world racing Pro and Am; nobody blinked when they cancelled.
    Sorry. I am not trying to be insensitive. 2 days after is a long time for the rest of the world. It is a freak accident. But we all know this is mountain biking - and racing at that. Accidents are to be expected.
    No doubt there are guys and gals talking about all this stuff in Crested Butte right now in pubs etc. All the info is out and now is as good a time as any to discuss. I don't think we need to wait until the Whistler Enduro coming up. Let's start talking and healing.
    During a nuclear explosion, there is a certain radius where all frozen pizza will be cooked perfectly.

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lindahl View Post
    Yeah, not relevant to this freak accident, of course, but we were talking about this the prior weekend in Crested Butte. A buddy (who enjoys racing enduros but is out due to fitness issues this year) commented after riding Captain Jack that if he was racing this year, he did not feel comfortable with the idea of racing it. He also brought up how shaken he was, a few years ago, when he saw, from the lift, someone break their femur on Avery during practice. I also witnessed, in the lift line, a few of the top pro teams from various countries discussing strategies and techniques on how to handle the technicality of several of the features on Jack. There's definitely a line that's being crossed. And maybe not at the pro level, but at the amateur level, it's causing past competitors to reconsider racing. I think it's tough to balance between what promotes the format and what hurts it. Obviously the gnarlier tracks that are lift accessible are better for spectators and race coverage media, and at least some of the competitors love it, but if that causes other potential competitors to pass...? It's a good question and a solid topic for discussion.
    This is an excellent point of conversation - I sort of poised it in the whole practice debacle. The sport is changing. In a way I keep drawing parallels to rally racing. Rally started as sort of the "everyman's race". Bring out whatever car you have and hammer on it on normal roads.

    Then it progressed to Group B - where companies were throwing millions at the sport and cars got so scary fast people started dying and the sport had to be regulated to a point where its at today.

    I think the sport is going through some growing pains at the moment. I also think we as racers are still figuring out what is fun and what isn't. What works, what doesn't. Lets also not forget what is acceptable at the EWS level and what is acceptable at the local level are two different things. Finally, they'll always be a difference between europe and US based of what the forest service will allow (no true "french" enduro will exist in the USA barring a major policy change).

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by puregravity View Post
    Sorry. I am not trying to be insensitive. 2 days after is a long time for the rest of the world. It is a freak accident. But we all know this is mountain biking - and racing at that. Accidents are to be expected.
    No doubt there are guys and gals talking about all this stuff in Crested Butte right now in pubs etc. All the info is out and now is as good a time as any to discuss. I don't think we need to wait until the Whistler Enduro coming up. Let's start talking and healing.
    Well, last year at Winter Park EWS a girl crashed, was evac'd and was basically in a coma and they kept on racing after the evac. I hope that helps.

  6. #31
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    Most of the Euro enduro racers are wearing more gear than the average downhill racer. Not that the extra pads are a bad idea or anything, but DH racers are generally hitting far gnarlier terrain at much higher speeds while wearing less protection, and it's not like we're seeing massive amounts of serious injuries there (not that relatively minor injuries are uncommon, but paralysis / death is pretty rare). Mandating more protection might cut down on some injuries, but if I've got to wear a pressure suit to enter the race, I'm just not going to bother racing at all.

    The worst crashes I've seen (and taken myself) while racing have been in relatively mellow, inconsequential terrain, which it sounds like was also the case in CB. People let their guard down and take a breather, but they're still going race pace. Clipping a pedal or washing the front end is worse if you're not expecting it. If the trail is super techy and gnarly, speeds are slower and people are paying close attention to what they're doing. Crashes might be more common on that sort of trail, but 99% of the time they'll be relatively minor crashes because the rider knows it's coming.

  7. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by powdork View Post
    Damn that's shitty. Vibes to all involved.
    How does one perform CPR on someone whose suffered massive chest trauma?
    Hard to speculate because no one witnessed the accident and the particulars are lacking, but you would do CPR the exact same way regardless of the type of trauma. Unfortunately CPR in a cardiac arrest patient with suspected blunt trauma is futile about 99.9% of the time. If you ride up on someone like that, you should not hesitate for a second to start pushing on his chest after you feel for a pulse. For all you know, he could've had a massive heart attack which led to the crash. Until medics can get there and perform higher level care, you should do CPR as long as possible. Kudos to the first guys on scene. I'm sure that was the last thing they were expecting to endure in the middle of the race at CB. Must have been tough.

  8. #33
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    Interesting dynamic going on here. The growth of a young sport along with the tragedy that could happen to anyone who straps on a helmet.

    Generally in a more matured arena with the setting being the same, not cancelling is almost always better for all involved emotionally.

    Getting back to the task at hand has been better for everyone's personal psyche and the viewing public's perceptions. Recovery from a tragedy (freak or otherwise) like this is less fracturing (for lack of a better) amoungst the competitors and the extended family that becomes the circus, no matter how lose your affiliation. The event looses a lot of it's significance, but you go away with something a lot easier to hold on to . The anguish, hurt, fear, empathy, confusion; whatever you want to call your pain, has a more tangible smell and taste and is easier to wrap your head around.

    Cancelling this particular event was probably the right thing to do for EWS at this point in time because of the wake up call that is part of this horrible incident. I can tell you IMPE, (cancelling or continuing) doesn't lessen the impact of loss either way. It is not irreverent to the ones most impacted either as the privacy that comes with the event continuing it's march is most appreciated.

    As a footnote to the competitors; this type of accident and how you deal with it usually separates the chaff from the wheat. It will steel your heart or it will make you step away from the commitment required.

    Vibes to everyone affected.
    Last edited by Gepeto; 08-03-2015 at 06:54 PM. Reason: sayin it better

  9. #34
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    Death at EWS race in Crested Butte

    ^^^ Interesting opinion Gepeto. Whats your context? Where is your perspective coming from?

    Quote Originally Posted by toast2266 View Post
    The worst crashes I've seen (and taken myself) while racing have been in relatively mellow, inconsequential terrain, which it sounds like was also the case in CB. People let their guard down and take a breather, but they're still going race pace. Clipping a pedal or washing the front end is worse if you're not expecting it. If the trail is super techy and gnarly, speeds are slower and people are paying close attention to what they're doing. Crashes might be more common on that sort of trail, but 99% of the time they'll be relatively minor crashes because the rider knows it's coming.
    Completely agree, both in my experience and in theory.

  10. #35
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    Motorcycle roadracing in its media infancy - 80's/90's... 8 dead anywhere from in my arms to a couple hundred yards away over a 14 year span.

    I was in two active combat units for just under four years and didn't see this much or type of carnage.

    This does not include all the other major mayhem. An amputation, unconscious or comma and permanently altered. Compound fractures, mutilation of large body parts. Fingers and toes ground completely off.

    Very good friend gave up a toe to replace a thumb and he continued to race - effectively too. This thread makes me need to find an old friend who is paralyzed.

    Doesn't really matter where or how. It takes the same kind of grit to push on. I realize when you're SAR/EMT/Dr/Nurse/Medic you are experiencing the results of this type of shit daily, but it’s still second hand. The OMG moments tend to stick.

    Just being within earshot at a fubar event when it happens sometimes effects some people pretty dramatically.

    Knowing basic triage and being able to execute when ugly strikes helps for me.
    Last edited by Gepeto; 08-03-2015 at 06:53 PM.

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gepeto View Post
    Motorcycle roadracing in its media infancy - 80's/90's... 8 dead anywhere from in my arms to a couple hundred yards away over a 14 year span.

    I was in two active combat units for just under four years and didn't see this much or type of carnage.

    This does not include all the other major mayhem. An amputation, unconscious or comma and permanently altered. Compound fractures, mutilation of large body parts. Fingers and toes ground completely off.

    Very good friend gave up a toe to replace a thumb and he continued to race - effectively too. This thread makes me need to find an old friend who's permanently paralyzed.

    Doesn't really matter where or how. It takes the same kind of grit to push on. I realize when you're SAR/EMT/Dr/Nurse/Medic you are experiencing the results of this type of shit daily, but it’s still second hand. The OMG moments tends to stick.

    Just being within earshot at a fubar event when it happens sometimes effects some people pretty dramatically.

    Knowing basic triage and being able to execute when ugly strikes helps for me.
    The tough part for me is the "why". For fun? Its something I've wrestled with time and time and time again. So many of us want to walk that edge. But we also want to come home, have a beer, and partake in life's lesser crazy things too. I may be faster than I ever was (on a bike) but I also take far less risk. But I still know the lurking pedal strike is just as likely for me as it was Will...

    Tough balance indeed. Something I know I could stomach as a SAR guy but struggle to as a "this is for fun" guy...

  12. #37
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    Random unpreventable horrible shit happens to good people all too often. I really don't think there is more to it than that.

    RIP.

  13. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsavery View Post
    It might too soon to ask this question, and it's not really relevant to this situation but it's something I've been pondering a bit lately (before this weekend). Is Enduro racing getting a bit too "gnarly" for it's stated mission?
    Not saying it's the gospel of enduro, but I remember seeing the "Rise of Enduro" movie http://www.theriseofenduro.com/ where people (mainly from EWS) were talking about how enduro races are the everyman's races and that they are popular because they're how people like to ride every day.

    That's great. And of course the fun part is downhill, enduro wouldn't be as popular if they were hillclimb xc sufferfests. However, I've seen a bunch of enduro races that seem like mainly downhill races that aren't run on a ski hill (or sometimes are). Hell at the recent EWS race in France weren't they using chairlifts the whole time? My point is that while this accident sounds like a freak occurrence, the stakes and getting higher, riders faster and the courses seem to be getting rougher and favoring the downhill type bikes.

    It's fine if that's where enduro racing is going to this basically mini-downhill race. But it's going to result in being less of an "everyman's" sport and more injuries are going to happen and I think it may turn off a segment of riders.

    Sorry if this is a bit of a threadjack, vibes to the rider, was absolutely devastating to read. However does seem like a somewhat relevant discussion.
    This is what killed DH racing for me (and I'm sure a bunch of other people) in the early 2000's. Amateur advanced/expert level riders dropping $5k on a bike, driving hours to a ski hill every weekend, then crashing like crazy and getting torn up. Seems awesome at first, but not the thing for the average working yuppie who has to go back to a desk job on Monday. Simply not worth it.

    Flip side of the coin is building prepped easy flow trails. Makes it much easier in theory, but doesn't teach a wide skillset and still achieves dangerous speeds.

    I now mainly ride technical XC trail, like a large percentage of riders. Slower speeds, little danger.

  14. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffreyJim View Post
    The tough part for me is the "why". For fun? Its something I've wrestled with time and time and time again. So many of us want to walk that edge. But we also want to come home, have a beer, and partake in life's lesser crazy things too. I may be faster than I ever was (on a bike) but I also take far less risk. But I still know the lurking pedal strike is just as likely for me as it was Will...

    Tough balance indeed. Something I know I could stomach as a SAR guy but struggle to as a "this is for fun" guy...
    I find it easier to rationalize by understanding how fragile everyday life can be, in general. I feel like that random pedal strike and tragic result is pretty fucking rare... like getting hit by a car on your cruiser rare. Random injuries, maybe not so much... but I'm ok with those.

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lindahl View Post
    I find it easier to rationalize by understanding how fragile everyday life can be, in general. I feel like that random pedal strike and tragic result is pretty fucking rare... like getting hit by a car on your cruiser rare. Random injuries, maybe not so much... but I'm ok with those.
    Good point. I will say the whole "random pedal strike" thing isn't as random these days. Look what put Jerome out last season (mundane pedal strike to OTB). That on a "high" BB Jeykll.

    I told a friend earlier this year that if I crash hard I'd bet more than likely it's pedal strike induced. 13" BB + 155mm travel. Sure is fun but you gotta be careful...

  16. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffreyJim View Post
    Tough balance indeed. Something I know I could stomach as a SAR guy but struggle to as a "this is for fun" guy...
    I don't buy into the "just for fun" take. Wingsuits, BASE, bungee jumping, climbing, skiing in known avi terrain and striking the right balance (all relatable to a high percentage around here), the girl standing in front of the knife thrower and 500 more eminently dangerous physical endeavors - it's more than fun. These are experiences to be replayed a 1000 times on your personal hi-def memory and that mold you into a grounded person of substance who has a firmer grip (than john-q-public) on your own mortality and a much more effective moral compass.

    AND, because your willing to live your life, bestowed upon you are a pair of lenses that improve your view of a sunrise and sunset that cannot be taken away.

    So much un-like a couchafied cube jockey racing towards a social security check that passed through this life without a blip on the screen. Experiencing life through someone else's eyes via boob tube or on the side-lines.

    A big fuck that!

    Right after the coke and hookers i'm pulling into the garage, closing the door and leaving the car running.

    Quote Originally Posted by MakersTeleMark View Post
    Random unpreventable horrible shit happens to good people all too often. I really don't think there is more to it than that.
    ^this... So, for the endorphin riddled, anxiety shedding, prepubescence first squirt rush and the permanent replay that goes with it, the trade off for a few (or more) percentage points of potential self destruction, I'm all in

    god's speed to Will
    Last edited by Gepeto; 08-03-2015 at 06:59 PM.

  17. #42
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    Excellent perspective Gepeto. Thanks.

  18. #43
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    It's odd. I wrecked last week and bruised my ribs pretty good. Wasn't even going fast. Afterward I was like, "Why the hell do I wear knee pads and elbow pads, but no chest protection?" Started looking at chest protection online and this tragedy happens. Spooky.

    Like others have said its a freak thing. Every 5 or 10 years someone dies in baseball from a line drive to the sternum.

    Do I feel like I should wear protection when racing enduro? Probably, but reality is I will do it once and then nearly pass out from heat stroke while wearing a pressure suit when its 85 degrees out with 70% humidity.

    Its all part of the risks we take for "fun". I honestly think lots of us do this stuff because it's like drugs. Adrenaline is a drug and since I don't do actual drugs anymore I take stupid risks racing down gnarly shit on the edge of disaster much of the time.

    I do believe that enduro has gone past the "every man" phase very rapidly. The east coast enduro races are pretty much all lift served on the same exact terrain as the DH races. Only its 5 stages and you are "supposed" to be on a 150mm bike. Although 1/3 of the field just runs full DH rigs anyway. That's a whole other discussion.

  19. #44
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    Fuck that... give me drugs and adrenaline both please. Preferably adrenaline first, and then drugs at the afterparty.

    Quote Originally Posted by Whiteroom_Guardian View Post
    I do believe that enduro has gone past the "every man" phase very rapidly. The east coast enduro races are pretty much all lift served on the same exact terrain as the DH races. Only its 5 stages and you are "supposed" to be on a 150mm bike. Although 1/3 of the field just runs full DH rigs anyway. That's a whole other discussion.
    How is that different from the Super D of yesteryear?

  20. #45
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    Super D was generally 1 big run with a bunch of pedaling. Some races were mass starts, which was quite sporty. Some were even mass LeMans style starts where you had to run to your bike.

  21. #46
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    Adrenalin? Maybe, if you want to put a dramatic spin on it for your friends and family. From skiing to kayaking to climbing to mountain biking, since I was a kid I did these things for fun. If I was looking for some sense of being out of control or to feel like I'm on the edge, I would have thrown in the towel a long time ago.
    Go to cool places, see cool shit, do fun things, learn how to do difficult things and stay in control (for the most part).
    As Toast and others have said, the bad stuff tends to happen in the easy terrain. Not when people are peaking. It's just random stupid stuff. You might put yourself at a slightly higher risk by doing these things, but bad things happen to people all the time whether they're out doing something fun or just crossing the street or eating a donut.
    There are so many people doing these races now that it's just a matter of numbers. Something bad is going to happen to someone. Take comfort in the knowledge that although one man died that day, tens of thousands of other mountain bikers around the globe came out of the day unscathed.
    I'm sad for the guy who died and his family. It's a horrible tale and no amount of armchair quarterbacking is going to answer a single question about this seemingly very unlikely way to go.

  22. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lev View Post
    Hard to speculate because no one witnessed the accident and the particulars are lacking, but you would do CPR the exact same way regardless of the type of trauma. Unfortunately CPR in a cardiac arrest patient with suspected blunt trauma is futile about 99.9% of the time. If you ride up on someone like that, you should not hesitate for a second to start pushing on his chest after you feel for a pulse. For all you know, he could've had a massive heart attack which led to the crash. Until medics can get there and perform higher level care, you should do CPR as long as possible. Kudos to the first guys on scene. I'm sure that was the last thing they were expecting to endure in the middle of the race at CB. Must have been tough.
    When I originally asked the question I was picturing a massive open chest wound. Sounds like in this case they would have acted normally since it would be basically impossible to tell there was blunt force chest trauma.
    But this leads me to something I've thinking about all day. Wouldn't a massive heart attack followed by 45 minutes of CPR look very similar to, if not exactly like, blunt force chest trauma?
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  23. #48
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    Sorry to hear this.

  24. #49
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    The responses in this thread remind me why I tend to stay away from TGR these days. Soft-body mind-addled uberfeminized "men" who have to apologize and rationalize things, you people aren't the ones the young men of the world should look up to or emulate. You're the opposite.

    "Needing a rush of adrenaline on the edge of control!" Yeah right. If you're losing control you're gonna crash & get hurt. That's what happens, no matter whether you're playing tiddly winks in the comfort of your 25k sq ft McMansion, or driving at le Mans in the rain.

    Yes it's a bummer this guy died. No it doesn't mean we need safety controls. No it doesn't mean we need some Jeffrey Jim teary-eyed bullshit soliloquy. Stop acting like you imagine yourselves the heroes of the next generation. You're not that.

    ...oh, wait... almost forgot...

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  25. #50
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    Sad news. RIP.

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