Rae Morrison Finishes Second at Sea Otter Enduro!
In her first trip to Monterey, California’s Sea Otter Classic cycling festival, Rae Morrison conquered the fast and flowy 4-stage Enduro to finish on the podium in second place.
Without the technicality, elevation or length of the Enduro World Series races Morrison is accustomed to, Thursday’s Sea Otter Enduro still allowed her fitness and technical bike-handling skills to shine. The race is a combination of Sea Otter’s downhill, slalom and XC offerings, which means pedaling endurance is equally as important to airtime and cornering prowess.
Hot off a flight from her home in New Zealand, Morrison made the best of the 90 minutes of open practice on the downhill and slalom tracks Thursday morning to shake off any remaining jetlag. The usually dusty coastal Sea Otter dirt had been moistened by recent showers, creating traction which was a welcome change from the EWS races in both Rotorua and Tasmania.
With heavy amounts of pedaling in stages 2 and 3, Morrison made the choice to trade her Hail Advanced in for the more XC-oriented Pique Advanced. Many other pros opted for their shorter-travel steeds, as well.
“I felt really good physically, strong on the pedals and riding a lightweight bike [the Pique] was a lot of fun. It shot up the climbs and was really responsive during the sprints and accelerations,” said Morrison.
Although the competition is fierce, the Sea Otter Classic is all about fun. With many of Morrison’s Giant Factory Off-Road downhill teammates trying their hand at Enduro and vice versa, the event elicits an atmosphere of celebration and comradery.
“I had a lot of fun today, the atmosphere and organization was great. This is my first time at Sea Otter; it is really special to be part of such a big event,” said Morrison.
Morrison hits the track again on Sunday for the Sea Otter Downhill event before beginning her summer EWS tour in Madeira, Portugal.
Friday, April 21, 2017