Archive for February, 2013

Santos Vortex Spring Training

Saturday, February 23rd, 2013

by Sean Hess, Team Rider and Manager for Strackacobra. Visit me on Google+ and Facebook.

Vortex Spring Training

While pitchers and catchers are reporting further south in Florida, I’m at the Santos Vortex near Ocala working on my own skills this spring.

My Florida State Series races last fall were disasters.  If I wasn’t having a mechanical, it felt like I was pedaling in glue.

I spent so much of the last year training on the road I lost some of my edge on the mountain bike.  So my coach Tristan Cowie and I came up with a plan to just work on fundamentals this spring.  And since I’m in business it had to be based on SMART goals (Specific Measurable Achievable, etc.).

I went out and started filming myself in the Vortex in places I’ve always had trouble with, or where I knew it could be ridden better.

Most of the improvement I’ve gained isn’t in physical skills per se, but in mental approach.  The course isn’t changing, the bike isn’t changing, and I’m not changing.  But my approach to each corner, berm, and turn has changed.  In short, I am seeing a different course now.   I ride it completely differently and not only do I ride it faster I use so much less energy doing it.

It’s not always perfect.  One week on the Horseshoe Bend section I caught myself on tape crashing.  My kids make me rewind it over and over again and laugh mercilessly as I go down.  But to be fair, it is funny.

And some weeks I’m more distracted or out of sync than others.  On the Challenger Curve sections I felt like Session 1 was much better than Session 2 (though it turns out I had the flu in Session 2 and wouldn’t realize it until later in the day).

As I start consistently hitting my marks on a section I move on and film new sections.

It’s been an amazing spring.  It’s so much fun to ride the mountain bike again!

Watch me crash in the vid below, about the 1:20 – 1:25 mark:

See Strackacobra’s mountain themed T’s at