Photo Credit: Nathan Huges Photo
In this non-World Cup episode of Mulally’s Musings, Neko reports back on the Pro GRT final in Tamarack, Idaho. The event—and Pro GRT National series—is one that brings US downhillers closer together.
Neko rode all four rounds of the 2019 series, which started in early March at Windrock (Oak Ridge), TN. There a stacked field was frothing to test out off-season fitness gains and new bike setups. The four-race series then went on to rounds in Port Angeles, WA; Mountain Creek, NJ, and finally Tamarack, ID to crown a winner—who happens to be Neko.
Neko gives insight to the high-level of competition of the Pro GRT series, but also to the high-level of camaraderie on the National circuit versus the World Cup.
There’s also a level of goofing around that isn’t present on the World Cup circuit, like Chris Kovarik qualifying on an Intense M1 from the early 2000s.
“The quality of the races is just the same, but the difference is that it’s more laid back,” says Mulally. “At the World Cup, all the riders are in their pit. Then back at the hotel resting. It’s more isolating, [with everyone] taking it more seriously. Whereas at a National, the competition is just as high, but when you come down you’re hanging out in a grass field together and working on your own bike.”
“It feels more pure,” said Mulally.
Photo credit: Olivia Smith