06/18/07 Warrior’s Society News

In this issue:

1. Article on “The Traverse” event and volunteers from the Orange County Register

2. Team Sho-Air / La Ruta de los Conquistadores to attend 500+ kilometer stage race in Canada


Dave Whiting of the Orange County Register also wrote an article on the volunteers that help make our events possible:

To read the article go to:


To see a video of the writer Dave Whiting being interviewed about the article on KCET go to:


On another note:

Guy Sutton has donated his Expert Class winnings back to the club. His reasons why are below:

“Thanks for putting on another great race “The Traverse”. I really liked the ideal weather, early start and instant results you posted at the finish line so we didn’t have to badger the race directors. If they didn’t have bike bottles at 4 corners I would never have made it as mine ejected during the first few miles. Somehow I got the 30+ 1st place and $500 to boot, not to mention some sweet XTR pedals in the post ride raffle/wrestling match. This is way too much for a weekend warrior like me to accept. Please take this check as a donation to the Warrior’s Society. Perhaps the money could be spent on something nice for all the volunteers that work so hard to make these events possible. See you all at the VQ in 2008.


Guy Sutton”

The Warrior’s Society greatly honors Guy’s contribution to the club. We are blessed in that we have enough funds to for the rest of our fiscal year. On behalf of Guy Sutton his winnings will be donated to the Freedom Alliance Scholarship Fund.


The Freedom Alliance Scholarship Fund honors the bravery and dedication exhibited by Americans in our Armed Forces who have sacrificed life or limb defending our country by providing educational scholarships to their children. In the last 20 years, over 15,000 service members have given their lives defending our country. More than 3,400 soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and Guardsmen have been killed in the war in Iraq, leaving behind approximately 2,000 children.

Thousands more members of our Armed Forces have been permanently disabled, leaving their families in difficult financial situations. Their children – the sons and daughters of America’s military heroes – (many of whom are now young) will be eligible for a Freedom Alliance Scholarship in the years to come.

Freedom Alliance has established a permanent Scholarship Trust Fund to aid the children of these brave Americans. In February 2007, Colorado Technical University pledged $1 million in full tuition scholarships for Freedom Alliance Scholarship recipients who wished to attend their university.

Through the generosity of Guy Sutton and so many patriotic Americans, the Freedom Alliance Scholarship Fund will provide scholarships for thousands of young Americans, reminding them that their parents’ sacrifice will never be forgotten by a grateful nation.

Many thanks to all our participants, volunteers and sponsors who helped make this event a success and many thanks also to Guy for helping us to honor the sacrifice of our servicemen and women and to Dave Whiting for writing the article recognizing the contributions of our volunteers.


Team Sho-Air rider and epic ride aficionado Manuel Prado had his interest piqued about the Canadian stage race during a conversation with Olympian rider and Trans Rockies Champion Andreas Hestler. The two sat down for lunch after finishing Day 3 of La Ruta de Los Conquistadores, which is held annually in Manuel’s home country of Costa Rica. Andreas told Manuel about the 7-day stage race that runs from Victoria to Whistler and explained that lots of technical single track and grueling climbs compose this 500+ kilometer mountain bike race. Manuel, a seasoned endurance rider, has competed in La Ruta de Los Conquistadores 3 years running, with his first race in 2004 and his best finish in 2006 where he placed 13th overall among the biggest international pro field.

Early April of this year held the annual Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, CA. Manuel won his event for the Semi-Pro class and press organizer Luis Rueda brought up The Seven Race. He was impressed with Manuel’s representation of Costa Rica and offered to help him race the British Columbia event by paying the entry fee. Sho-Air offered to cover the rest of the trip expenses. After all of this good news, Manuel really began thinking this was the kind of race he had been waiting for. But who did he know that would be up for the challenge?

Fellow Sho-Air teammate and often most equal competitor Jason First has volunteered to be Manuel’s other half for this two-wheeled tour of Canada’s hillsides. Manuel and Jason feel they will be a great match as they share a strong passion for mountain biking. These two young men grew up more than 3000 miles apart but destiny brought them together to one of the most capable and competitive mountain bike teams in California and the United States.

Team Sho-Air in partnership with La Ruta de Los Conquistadores is extremely happy to announce they will be sending two of its most talented members; Semi – Pro riders Manuel Prado and Jason First to compete in the ultra challenging Canadian Stage Race in the province of British Columbia. They will be completing the event under the category Duo Team, as this is one of the two team classes they have in this type of stage race in order to ensure safety and promote camaraderie. In this category, the two riders must remain together for the duration of the race. For the Sho-Air duo this won’t be hard to do. Jason and Manuel have raced several 24-hour races together and they have always made a strong team. Team stage races such as this one really put friendship to the test. Everyone’s heard stories about riders who begin a stage race as best friends and finish on terrible terms. Luckily, these Sho-Air riders have extensive experience sharing the ups and downs of riding together.

The two have trained and competed most of the 2007 season side by side and always finish within a few minutes of each other. The most recent race they competed in was The Traverse, organized by Orange County based Warriors Society. Manuel and Jason rode together for most of the race and had an exceptional showing; placing 1st and 2nd. The two riders finished the 45-mile, 8000+ feet elevation gain race in under 3:45 keeping an average pace of over 12mph. During the training season, they push themselves to embark on epic 50+ mile rides in the hills of the Saddleback Mountains and later discuss race strategy over lunch. The two have even ventured on overnight rides with minimal camping gear. Each one of these events has helped to strengthen the foundation for a competitive, grueling stage race.

A lengthy race such as this puts major wear and tear on equipment, but the bikes the team will be riding just got a complete overhaul with new tires, drive trains and brakes courtesy of Rock N’ Road Cyclery. The bikes will also need spare parts, routine and even emergency maintenance during the race. This won’t pose too much of a problem with Manuel Prado’s 5 years experience as a mechanic for Rock N’ Road Cyclery and Jason First. These two riders should have no problem fixing any flat, mechanical or other unforeseen mishap during the 7-day stage race.

Currently, Manuel Prado and Jason First are on their final build of training and will soon start to tone down their intensity during the final weeks. The race will take place on July 1st of this year and finish up on July 7th. Their fitness levels will be put to the test immediately, with the first two stages (Days 1 and 2) stretching more than 110 kilometers per day. The next 4 stages average 60 kilometers per day, with the final stage being a technical 25 kilometer time trial.

It appears that Manuel and Jason will be facing some tough competition. This exciting event has attracted some of the most talented riders in the world. Amongst the pros at the start line will be 6 time 24 Hour Solo World Champion Chris Eatough, Trans Rockies Champion Andreas Hestler, former Phonak road racer and 2003-2004 NORBA Champion Ryder Hesjedal, and Canadian National Champion and Olympian Seamus MacGrath. With seven days to prove themselves, there will be many chances for any of the talented Duo Teams to come out ahead and declare themselves champions of the first ever BC Bike Race.

Good luck to Team Sho-Air / La Ruta de Los Conquistadores duo Manuel Prado and Jason First on the most epic ride of their lives. The two will represent Costa Rica and the USA in one of the biggest mountain bike stage races in North America.

Thanks to the team sponsors Cytomax, Shimano, Rock and Road and Geoladders.

Manitou and Shimano are the Major Component Sponsors of the Warrior’s Society

Cytomax is the official fluid replacement drink of the Warrior’s Society

Clif Bar is the Official Energy Bar and Gel of The Warrior’s Society

The Warrior’s Society
A Tax-Exempt organization under 501(c) 4 of the IRS Code www.warriorssociety.org

A Blue Ribbon Coalition (BRC) affiliated organization

“Some Americans need hyphens in their names because only part of them has come over; but when the whole man has come over, heart and thought and all, the hyphen drops of its own weight out of his name.”

Woodrow Wilson

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