The Megavalanche 2008 by Ed H.
There are four things that you’ll hear a lot at the Mega this year:
1) Shit, I don’t remember it being this hard…
2) Or…Shit I didn’t think it would be this hard.
3) I can’t believe how far that fricking snow goes on for this year.
4) Is it really going to rain?
The first one I think is just a case of people remembering it through rose tinted shades/goggles, but to be fair I think some of it has got a bit rougher this year and the heavy rain at the beginning of the week hasn’t helped. One thing that definitely has changed though is the qualifying course. It no longer has the big loop over towards the lake, it’s now much shorter and features a tricky off-camber section. It means that the ideal bike for the qualifying course is now possibly a DH bike as there’s far less pedalling than before, and out of the two tracks it’s arguably the rougher.
The qualifying track
The second one is being said by all those people who listened to all those people who were wearing those rose tinted shades/goggles last year. One such person is Tracy Moseley who just said ‘I can’t believe how tough it is, and those climbs, they’re just a killer’ and ‘It’d normally take me a week of flat out training on a DH track to get my hands to hurt as much as they do now, and I’m only halfway through day two!’
A couple of riders shitting it when George Edwards the Mega Organiser points out that the track does indeed go down that sheer icy drop
The third comment is a fair enough one, but to be honest after what I’d heard there isn’t quite as much as I thought there would be. It does however make things even trickier than usual, especially when you suddenly find yourself in a patch that was hidden behind a rock that you’ve just launched yourself off. The snow on the qualifier is fine though, nothing to write home about.
The final one is being said in fear by anyone who’s been here before because the weather forecast is predicting rain for both the qualifying and the main race. For the qualifying this won’t be too bad, but for anyone who has experienced the freezing cold (even when it’s bright sunshine and clear skies) two or so hour wait at the top of the mountain for the main race, the thought of waiting about in rain/sleet/snow is just a hideous one.
The main track just off the start, that’s not blood that’s where the course goes.
The view back up from the qualifier, plenty of snow patches.
Only other news is that this morning the top riders were invited up to the glacier at early doors for a speed challenge. Unfortunately I’m not sure of the outcome cos it was so bloody disorganised that I had to leave in the end and it wasn’t looking hopeful for any records as the battery on the speed thingy seemed decidedly flat. Anyway, it was good to see with my own eyes though the speed that those mentalists go down that slope, and it was also good to see a few brown trousers amongst those who hadn’t done it before.(We have just heard that Mike Skinner clocked up 88kmh, which isn’t too shabby at all down a slushy ski run)
Oh yeah, no sign of Nico as yet. Maybe after all those mechanicals last year he’s decided to sack it off?
Megavalanche: The news so far