The Park City Point to Point (PCP2P) is one of the coolest mountain biker races in the US. The course is approximately 80 miles of mostly aspen-shaded singletrack at about 8000 feet of altitude in Utah’s glorious Wasatch Mountains. This isn’t just any singletrack, either. Park City was recently named a “Gold-Level Ride Center” by the International Mountain Bike Association (IMBA) because of the quality, quantity and variety of mountain bike trails in the area. Most of the PCP2P course is on or around the Mid Mountain Trail, a designated IMBA Epic, which traverses the mountains above Park City from Deer Valley Ski Resort to Canyons Resort.
It’s been a hot dry summer and before the race the Park City trails were pretty much a powdery mess. But the weather finally broke the night before the race and thunder storms pounded the area all night. I fell asleep to thunder and lightning and when I woke up at 5 AM to make the 7 AM start it was still raining and thundering in Salt Lake City. I checked the PCP2P Web site to find out if the race was postponed but there wasn’t any news so I loaded my camera gear in the car and headed up with my fingers crossed. When I arrived at the start it was cloudy and wet and the race was on hold while they evaluated conditions. Ultimately, the sun came out and the race was on, with the exception of the first, Round Valley section, where there’s a lot of clay in the dirt.
The weather was interesting. It continued to storm sporadically throughout the day, including a solid thunder storm late in the afternoon. The wet trails made for some nice muddy photos and because of the rain, racers enjoyed the best trail conditions in months. It turned out to be a great day for race photos. I shot over 1000 photos which I condensed into a gallery of about 80 (below). I hope you enjoy them.
Times were faster than in previous years since the first part of the course was dropped. Most riders finished in about 8 hours with the fastest racers coming in just under six hours. Local hero Alex Grant got the “4-Peat” this year with a time of five hours, fifty minutes and fifty seconds. It was a definitive win, with second place racer Ben Sonntag, crossing the finish line about 4.5 minutes later. Josh Tostado took third place with a time of 6:13:17, followed by Cary Smith in fourth and Nick Truitt taking the fifth spot on the Open Male podium. The first woman to finish was Kenda / Felt pro Amanda Carey. That makes two in a row for Amanda. The second woman to finish was KC Holley and third place was Jennifer Smith. The fourth and fifth Open Women finishers were Katherine O’Shea and Erin Swenson.
Photo info – all photos were shot with Canon’s brand new EOS-1D X flagship digital SLR, which I’m currently testing for PhotographyREVIEW.com. The camera is great and many of these photos were shot at ISO 3200 and ISO 6400. For more information on the camera, read my Canon EOS-1D X article on PhotographyREVIEW.com. And keep your eyes open for a full EOS-1D X pro review.