Striker’s Tales: Canada’s Apex Mountain Challenge / Chute Lake Disaster
British Columbia DH is far from dead this year alone we got to introduce four new sanctioned events and three of those had brand new event organizers in three separate cities! These events and guys all kick ass and were all thankful for the heart and soul these organizers and all event organizers are putting into keeping races and freerides going.
I loaded up Strikers F-Bomb and we headed back to the Okanagan for the first ever Apex Mountain Challenge and Chute Lake Disaster DH both former outlawed events both handing out cold hard cash on a couple of the best race tracks we have here in BC.
Penticton BC is the closest city to both of theses races so naturally that’s where we ended up on the Friday night. Coast lady boarder Carrie Coffin moved from Vancouver to Penticton to follow her dreams and created a rad little gem downtown where local youth, musicians, and skaters can hang out expressing themselves while contributing and helping build a grassroots community.
She rents a storefront and calls it her own there aren’t too many spots like this in any town let alone Penticton. It’s a spot where we are all welcome with open arms to crash on the floor, pass out on the skate ramp or snooze in our cars in the back alley. Its pretty dam cool we have people in our community willing to put it all on the line just to make things happen and bring us all together.
After a sick night of local live music and another family reunion, We woke up not so early then headed into the “toolies” where we would climb a magical mountain to the top of Apex summit. In the summer Apex is perfect for downhill skating, in the winter it’s a full blown ski hill with a huge lodge and a whole community of cabins where ski and snowboarders can live year round its total Okanagan paradise!!
It was totally dry until we got to the racecourse then it started pissing. Chim Snirt was on the trip and I knew ahead of time that I needed to talk to the guys at Cariboo Brewing to sponsor us some napkins. Chim takes the cake for most buckets filled with snot. He blows his nose more than he speaks so we didn’t just get him a box of Kleenex we got him an industrial box of Kleenex that comes with around one hundred packages of these suckers holding around five hundred snot rockets sheets thanks to Cariboo. Chim’s got a lot better these days most of his tissues find the garbage not all over the Cribb.
There wasn’t much of a crowd for this event but who needs a crowd anyways!? This was a sick course, one of the best I’ve seen in years around our scene anyways with a killer group of downhillers and a safely closed road. Now that all the kinks are worked out, Manu could work on the crowd next if he wanted and then that might generate some income to better the event in the future.
All the hay bails were double wrapped with garbage bags to hopefully save the bails and save a few bucks when trying to resell the bails after the event to try to offset some of the cost in running an event like this. If you don’t have any sponsors that are kicking in cash dollars bills add up quickly so in most cases we lose the event. It’s tough all the way around because you want to hold a free race and be the cool guy helping everyone out, but not all race organizers have the resources to do that, Most races cost a whack of cash to pull together with next to no help from the local areas
On the flipside of the coin though, you have racers that are broke as hell and need to buy wheels to race Wheels alone could cost you as much as rent if you’re crazy. Then add transportation and the cost of entry fees for sixteen weeks straight. It’s not easy for anyone, racers or the organizers so if you can support these events and if you’re reading this now and you got a whack of cash contact me and I’ll point you in the right direction I know many racers that deserve a shot and a financial break.
While we watched the racers go down and after dropping another pile of cash into the never-ending repairs and upkeep of the Cribb-Bomb I figured I would open up a side business called “Trailer Park Dogs” a semi high-class food joint sold out of the main window of the Cribb.
I mean it was a huge hit we could barely feed ourselves. Mike Yardwaste was helping me out we got so busy. The menu was intense we served “Trailer Park Dogz” that came with cheese, we sold some special bowls of “Trailer Park Dogz Hot Dogz Soup” and then the “Real Dogz Soup and Hot Dogz Combo” it was fantastic. This was good stuff and our clientele only knew our Dogz would get better through time so they loved to support us. You must have seen last week’s Striker’s Tales when we were cooking fish on the BBQ on the fly with pizza and moose chili on the stove. It only gets better! These are the risks we take for our customers.
We even used pure fresh Okanagan rainwater for our “Hot Dogz Soup” that we collected off of the Cribb Bomb awning. It was great everything just fell right into our hands, it’s like it was meant to be or something.
In the end, it was Alex Hannigan one of my favorite riders from Calgary now living in Vancouver ripping it up for the win. I’ve been watching him for years develop into a fine young aggressive hill killer this was a huge win for him I was excited he won this one way to go big buddy Coast Gold!!
We headed down for some food enjoying a bit of a puddle party while Manu got the awards ready and handed out some of those high quality Cariboo floating beer pong tables and great outdoors floating devices that come in handy while on tour. Not only do we float on these suckers but also they are made thick and tough enough to sleep on keeping racers cozy for the nights
Landyachtz Alex Hannigan for the win defeating Troy Yardwaste, Mack Wacey and a handful of other bombers this day. Cash was handed down from first to fourth place along with some fancy bottles of Okanagan wine and a bunch of other goodies including more Cariboo Shwag!!
Congrats guys!! Coast metals for all and how about Leo getting a fancy second place with Chim Snirt the total underdog sneaking in a impressive respectable third place finish maybe collecting his first ever bronze Coast bling right on guys!!
On our way out and back off the mountain you would be crazy not to skate this monster to get back to the main road. Everyone had enough but I wasn’t about to drive down this mountain road that almost overheated the Cribb Bomb while climbing this sucker so Coast soldier of speed, the Lethal Weapon Lex Luther got out and put on a bit of a show for the crew bless this kids soul!!
It was fast; dangerous, patchy and wet Luther was scared as hell it even had cattle guards, cars and semi trucks for him to play with! These kinds of conditions will keep you honest.
Apex Mountain is a kick ass event with a kick ass stoked racer organizer so make sure you plan to hit this event this season you won’t be disappointed. Let’s keep this one alive it’s all up to us it’s worth it!
**CHECK OUT TRAILER PARK DOGZ LIVE**
Well if the Trailer Park Dogz wasn’t enough food for the day we all decided to treat ourselves to some all you can eat buffet in Penticton. The racers were hungry and some of the crew had to make sure they had enough food to keep them alive for the next twenty-four hours trying to survive on a summer long race budget.
We all regrouped at Coffins Clubhouse for some loud music and some beer pong before heading out on the town to see what was happening on the beat. I was happy to meet this hot dog stand guy representing Cariboo Brewing on the main drag on a Saturday night before we all got the funk down.
The second race of our double-feature was on the Sunday on the other side of the lake this time almost right across the lake from Summerland, BC in the small community of Chute Lake. We’ve had outlaws here in the past but this year Danny “Rasta Chute Lake Disasta” pulled some rabbits out of his hat and revived his race after a one-year hiatus, this sort of thing never happens if your taking a year break from your event! That normally means it’s dead, but not in this case.
This is really exciting weekend for British Columbia downhill because this is one kick-ass, aggressive, balls to the wall, break your helmets on the barricade kinda shit. In all my years I haven’t seen a racetrack blow out so many racers bearings causing them bodily harm. Bearings blowing up!! Wheels blowing up and bouncing all over the place like rioters chucking rocks at the cops!! Wheels and bearings would explode and the speed hangers would almost spark a forest fire while the racer grinds to a crashing stop.
If that’s not enough excitement, you better pay attention to the other riders crashing towards you flipping and dislocating shoulders along the way! You gotta be quick! this racing is hectic as hell and you better be on your eh game, eh!?
here’s a couple more shot I took of the racing that day
It seemed like yesterday there was enough rain that we could fill buckets full of water and sell wiener soup out of, and then today it was hot as hell. How lucky are we to have two races in one weekend a full on double header and to top it off, you know if you show up to Danny’s race he’s going to feed you race day because this man is a chef and he knows chefs so we were in good hands here!! He cares!
I always enjoy seeing the vets out charging! Kibbling put on his game face and was ripping faster than I’ve seen him in years, and I love that. But it’s the young guns that the old dogs gotta watch out for! We remember the days of being fearless with nothing to lose but one good serious body busting crash usually changes that attitude real quick wiping the grin right off your face. Then we’ll see if you stick around or fade away, maybe even pick up motorbike and race circle track mud and snow like “Top Gun” Jesse Tyna! By the way, he’s killing bike racing and just made Mr. July in this years “2017 Mr Motorbike’s Boys Town” fundraiser in the village were proud buddy but come race masters for some real bling!
It was a hell of a weekend but to top it off it was a local charger Tristan Kodors with his aero helmet that handed everyone their asses back to them. Alex Hannigan left this weekend with a pocket full of cash with a Coast gold and a Coast bronze medal. This coming year is a big one for Hannie we’ll see if he will become the dominating force I’d like him to be! He’s growing up, he’s getting stronger, and he’s not just a minor threat anymore! It’s his time to shine.
After we crowned our Chute Lake Champions, I thought it was important to bring up these three special event organizers to the podium to be recognized for their very important contribution to the Coast family and the whole scene. Instead of complaining at races about prize money and rules, they all held three of their own new sanctioned events for the 2016 season and we could cheer loud enough for their efforts!! From left to right Manu Duhamel, Daniel Holdsworth and Mike Power Yardwaste!!! Great work guy’s way to pick up the slack and create!! You guys all kick serious ass!
There is something about the riders from the Okanagan that the city folk should worry about! In the past it was Mischo Erban, Max Irwin and Zen Shikaze and now you can add Tristan Kodors to the list of lethal weapons. Huge win for the young man, his biggest to date and if you don’t know who Tristan Kodors is and if he sticks around you will. This one stalked and picked off Riley Harris, Alex Hannigan and Mack Wacey one by one like a gory horror movie. That’s not an easy task, if you know what I mean.
ALSO Thanks to our 2016/2017 Cribb-Bomb Tour Sponsors!!! This Tour would never happen without the support of these brands!! Please send them a message thanking them or thank them with your dollars and support them!! They have helped us make the best memories and stories to tell for years to come. Thank you!!
Planting a Million Trees by 2020!!! Thanks for reading this weeks tales!!! lots more to come!!