Wednesday, November 26, 2014

2014 Season Recap

Another great mtb season in the books for the Maplelag Mountain Bike racing team! Maplelag Resort is very proud and grateful to the 30+  riders that "waved the flag" this past year in various events across the country. Many riders contributed to the MW MTB Reports and thanks to this riders that contributed. Archived reports can be found on 

The Minnesota Mountain Bike Series recently held an awards ceremony recognizing the top team and individual accomplishments. Highlighting the result sheet was the top five finish by the entire team in Omnium standings, led by a second place in the Elite and Citizen classes. 

Individual highlights were led by Eleanor Bacso who was the state champ in the women's  Elite class followed by a third overall by Jordan Horner. Elite men highlights include Kasy Bacso with a top three finish. Comp class was highlighted by Griffin Myslivecek with a second overall. Sport Highlights include another state champ with Ben Olson taking the top spot. Citizen highlights include high school rider Isaac Hale with a top three overall finish in the Citizen. Most other team members placed in their age group as we highlight most of the riders below. Big thanks to Bruce Adelsman and Todd Bauer for the awesome images. (any team member missing, first off, sorry, please email me with photo at
Thanks again everyone...keep the wheels moving!!

State champion Eleanor Bacso leading mx pro Alex Martin over a stair section on the Maplelag course during Laddies Loppet 2014. Former College of St Scholastica skier. 

 Kasey Bacso giving chase in the Expert race during Laddies Loppet 2014. Consistent placings by Kasey during the season landed him the top 3 overall in male Elite. Recently graduated from College of St Scholastica, competing in the Nordic ski program.

Jake Richards giving chase in the cross country race at Maplelag. In addition to racing select xc races this summer, Jake found a niched in enduro racing, placing top five in the overall in the Duluth Enduro series and top five finish in the Duluth MTB Festival Enduro. Jake is in his JR year at Scholastica racing Nordic.

Jordan Horner cleaning a rock garden during Laddies Loppet 2014. In addition to her 3rd Overall in Elite class in the Minnesota series, Jordan was the state high school champion after the high school fall season this year. Jordan currently on the Burnsville Nordic ski team.

John Wessling in the mix at the start of the Elite short track race at Maplelag. John's first full year of racing after a successful Nordic ski season at St Scholastica and before that, moto cross racing! John is geared up for great things in 2015~!

Maplelag team manager Jay Richards racing in the Great Hawk Chase at the new Mission Creek trail near Duluth. (Todd Bauer images)

Jeremy Hecker rolling through the trees during the Voyageurs Revenge   The recent NCAA Nordic All American from St. Scholastica sneaked in a few races before residing in Finland with a ski training group. (Todd Bauer images)

Matt Lee slicing and dicing at the Voyageurs Revenge. Matt also a Nordic skier finishing up a career at St Scholastica  (Todd Bauer images)

Andrea Horner racing at the Border Battle. Andrea fighting injuries part of the season keeping her from racing but keeping plenty busy with support of her racing family! (Todd Bauer images)

 Griffin Myslivecek rocking and rolling at the Singletrack Escape in St Cloud. Griffin joined the team just past the midway point in the season. Quite a story with this fine young man. Look for Griffin to improve on this years second place overall Comp finish as he makes the jump to the Elite class.

Paul Schomer racing Comp at Great Hawk Chase. Another Scholastica skier waving the flag for Maplelag on occasion.

 Dave Simmons giving it in the Comp race during Laddies Loppet 2014. Dave has specialized in endurance events taking on the Arrowhead 135 and other epic events.
 Matt Engen racing in the Comp XC Laddies Loppet at Maplelag. Massive shout out to Matt for his companies sponsorship and support for the Laddies Loppet. Matt also specializing in the endurance events.
Maplelag master Steve Wenzel racing on the home course. Steve is one of the longest standing members of the Maplelag mountain bike team and helped build a lot of the original single track way back in the 90's!! Thanks again Steve.

 John "Struchy" Struchinski racing in Laddies Loppet 2014. Struchy was part of the winning team at the 12 hour EndTombed race and also participated in the 12 hour race to sunset race.
Head of the household Matt Horner racing in Comp at Laddies Loppet. Papa of the 6 member Horner racing team family!

 Greg Ames racing to a first place finish in the Comp short track at Maplelag. Greg has been custom building a few bike frames. Check him out!!
Thad Schulz racing short track at Maplelag. Chad made the transition to the marathon division towards the end of the year. Good to see Thad racing against after a near career ending cycling injury last summer.

Ben Olson cranking it in the Sport short track. Ben was the overall winner in the Sport class in the series. Ben one of many riders getting in to the fat bike scene and should only get stronger after a "off season" of pushing big wheels in the snow.

Taylor Horner racing at Afton Avalanche at Afton Alps ski area. Taylor also raced in the high school season and is skiing this winter Nordic.

 Tony Schmitz racing in the Sport XC during Maplelag Laddies Loppet 2014. Big thanks to Tony for all his work for this years and past years poster and jersey designs.
 Denny Barry racing Sport at Laddies Loppet. Denny always willing to help build new trail and responsible for helping blow out sections of single track days before Laddies Loppet.

Anne Ellefson racing in Sport at Laddies Loppet. Anne responsible for getting a NW MN high school cycling team going for this fall that included kids from Detroit Lakes, Wadena, Park Rapids and Bemidji.

Isaac Hale racing in the Citizen short track during Laddies Loppet 2014. Isaac competed in both cross country running and the Minnesota Cycling league season this fall. Isaac, has mentioned at the top, recorded a top 3 overall among Citizen males.

Devon Horner making the jump up to Citizen, seen here racing in the short track at Maplelag. Devon ended up 7th overall in the series and 4th in his age group.

Wyatt Horner giving it in the Citizen cross country during Laddies Loppet.

Jens Richards racing at the Flugly, MB Johnson Park in Moorhead. Jens also raced in the Laddies Loppet Kids Comp at Maplelag.

Jon Richards catching some air at the start of the Danimal trail in Copper Harbor MI.

Jack Richards leading out the kids racers during Laddies Loppet 2014.

Thanks again for another awesome mtb season! Any rider I missed, please send me an email and photo to

Keep the wheels moving!!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

2014 Season- Training Adventures

 Maplelag team rider Eleanor Magnuson who recently tied the knot with former team rider Mason Bacso (now riding for KUHL) enjoyed part of their honeymoon riding up Mount Haleakalā in Hawaii!! Eleanor reports: I believe it look us just under 6 hours to climb up, at about 7,000 feet the altitude started hitting us hard. Some woman at the top asked us how we trained for it and I realized that this was only about #8 or so bike ride of the year for me. It took a little over an hour descending which was really fun but we had to stop multiple times because it was raining and our hands were so cold we couldn't really feel the brakes. Most of the descent was fun but at the top a bit sketchy because of the winds."

Waving the flag at 10,000ft. 

Denny Barry got a jump start on the season, heading south to hook up with area rider, Dave Jensen with  Denny was " F-S&S across The Katy Trail in Missouri. The first day was 95 miles with the hills  in the city of Jefferson being the final 5 miles that spoke volumes for the fun factor in the dark. 250 miles in 3 days on my mtb was a bit much for the very first ride of the season, but all good". 

 Mid April took a trip to Mexico with Jonell for five days. The riding was a mix between paved roads and dusty mountain roads with a little bit of singletrack in the mix. Fun to see trails ridden in the past now showing up on Strava. There is some incredible riding potential up in the mountains that see riders logging 50-100 mile rides east of Puerto Vallarata.
The Maplelag course dried up nicely after the winter snow melt allowing the first ride of the season over Easter weekend.  Recent rain closed the course but now with a few days of drying, the course is good to go. 

Keep the wheels moving!