Mountain Biking: Dear Juli, Wish We Could Spin Like You

Outside magazine, July 1995


Mountain Biking: Dear Juli, Wish We Could Spin Like You
By Todd Balf (with Martin Dugard and Alison Osius)


At April's Hawaiian Mountain Tour, the first major mountain-bike stage race in the United States, the Hawaii Five-O theme played during the presentation of the yellow jersey each day, there wasn't any obnoxious play on the PA system à la the Grundig and NORBA tours, and the field was deep. A success on several levels. Juli Furtado, who'd struggled somewhat during the spring, effortlessly thumped the women's field in verdant jungle terrain. She was apparently so at ease that when she spotted a tanned and relaxed press corps during a cross-country stage, she quipped, "Dear Editors: Having a great time. Wish you were here." Other racers didn't seem so laid back. Many were having to adopt road-racing-style team tactics for the first time in the event, which included time trial, circuit, point-to-point, downhill, and dirt criterium races. In the end, Furtado locked up her victory with a dominant performance in the 12-mile circuit race on day two. On the men's side, Switzerland's Thomas Frischknecht, his left clavicle still swollen from fractures last October and January, made it a point to let the others know he was back. After finishing second in the 1.5-mile prologue, he donned the leader's jersey by winning the time trial later that day. Team Giant sent Rune Hoydahl after him on day two, but Frischknecht made a solo break late in the action, giving him a 30-second cushion that he never lost.

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