Sea Otter Classic

Mountain Bike Events Hook New Racers at the Sea Otter Classic

Sabrina Jonnier
World Downhill Champion, Sabrina Jonnier, will be marked by her equally world class rivals at Sea Otter
photo courtesy of Frederic Machabert - Bike Magazine

MONTEREY, Calif. (January 30, 2008) Soil composition, topography, weather and of course, the all-important "flow" are key to building the mountain bike courses at the Sea Otter Classic, A Celebration of Sport. "If you build it, they will come" has never been truer for Sea Otter's mountain bike events, which continue to attract swarms of racers from all points around the globe. The Sea Otter Classic takes place April 17-20, 2008 at Laguna Seca Recreation Area, Monterey, Calif. USA.

For 90 percent of the 1,500 downhill racers that show up at Sea Otter, it might be the only time during their season that they race downhill. For some, like Joey Okamura of Carmel, Calif., it will be where they get hooked on downhill racing.

"I was just starting to look to the competing side of mountain biking and I found the Sea Otter Classic races," said 17-year-old Okamura. "When I first came to the practice day it was great. There were a lot of mountain bikers from all over the world there to do two things: race and celebrate the sport of mountain bike racing. The Sea Otter Classic is by far one of my favorite events out of the whole season."

World champions arrive from powerhouse gravity nations like Australia, France and now the UK to defend their previous year's Sea Otter victories against increasingly competitive fields. The dual slalom course draws the greatest flattery from competitors.

"All those berms and flat turns, you have to be energetic from top to bottom to keep up the speed and keep going faster, I love it!" said France's Sabrina Jonnier, who will return to Sea Otter this year to earn a fourth, consecutive victory in dual slalom.

What you need to know about off-road racing at the Sea Otter Classic:

Joey Okamura
Joey Okamura, 17, will return this year to race as an expert at Sea Otter

SRAM Downhill The SRAM Downhill course continues to evolve in 2008 with an improved top section (new line), a great mix of jumps, turns, pedaling sections and hi-rev speed traps, the course promises a challenge or two for you on the way down. For more information, go here

SRAM Dual Slalom The SRAM Dual Slalom is a classic. The single best Dual Slalom race in the world, the legendary Sea Otter course includes massive berms, tricky off-cambers, jumps and rhythm sections to challenge riders and thrill spectators. Course builder and designer Keith Defiebre has prepared a few surprises for 2008. Check it out here

SRAM Super D returns for its second year to hook an even bigger field of off-road enthusiasts eager to try out this obscure discipline. Super D, which is a hybrid of downhill and cross-country requiring not only power, but also a finely tuned descending strategy to win, will launch three days of mountain bike racing starting Friday, April 18. The 2008 Sea Otter Super D will be a combination of fast fire road and singletrack descents and maybe a few short double-track climbs. Super D is a LeMans-style, mass start race by category. For more information, go here

SRAM Short Track Short Track, a white-hot race format that has some racers seeing stars due to its high intensity output for a short amount of time, will kick off at noon on Saturday, April 19. Racers test their speed skills against their peers in this anaerobic hammer fest. The SRAM Short Track course is fast and challenging! For more information, go here

SRAM Cross-country will take place on Sunday, April 20, when hundreds of racers in numerous categories take to the start line to test their fight and fitness on the Fort Ord trail system. The SRAM cross-country event poses a distinct challenge since it is typically the longest race of the season. A course map for Sea Otter's cross-country event will be available March 14. Go here for map information. Racers will fight their way up short, steep climbs and enjoy single-track trails that include rocks, sand and other challenges. They will careen through tight sections in the trees and ride open fields of scenery. Go here for more information

About Sea Otter Classic, Inc.
The 18th Annual Sea Otter Classic will be held April 17-20, 2008 at the Laguna Seca Recreation Area, Monterey, California, USA. The four-day "Celebration of Sport" is considered the world's largest cycling festival, hosting nearly 10,000 professional and amateur athletes and 50,000 fans. The Sea Otter Classic benefits the Davis Phinney Foundation, which supports Parkinson's disease research and wellness, and IMBA California, which organizes advocacy and trailbuilding efforts statewide and strengthens California mountain bike clubs. More information can be found at or by calling 800-218-8411.


An online version of this release can be viewed here:

Wendy Booher

Donna Brown (local media)

Chris Worden (Web-related)

The image of NRC circuit winner Daniel Ramsey, which appeared in the last press release, was captured by

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