The Race Team
Thanks to all the awesome race achievements of Dirt Rock n Root Training's women's downhill team this year. Kudo's to all team members and best wishes for a great 2015 season. Cogratulations to all of our team riders for their awesome performances.
We are changing things up a little for 2015. Keep checking here for more info as we finalize our plans.
3 Time Masters World Downhill Champion
5 time Masters National Downhill Champion
IMBA-ICP Certified Instructor
USA Cycling Licensed Coach
Sandra Bartsch grew up in Germany and made the jump across the pond in 2001. She found success competing event horses at the advanced level along the east coast before switching to a nursing career. Needing to fill the void that competing horses had left, she discovered mountain biking in 2010. Her new-found love for mountain biking and her competitive nature brought her to enduro racing in 2013, where she raced the Eastern States Cup Enduro Series. She was able to snag a win at the Sunday River, Maine event which helped her become both the ESC Amateur Women Series Champion and the Overall Amateur series champion. She plans on racing the Eastern States Cup Enduro series again in 2014 as well some other east coast Enduro races.
Mountain biking is a sport Tracey Spiritus came dangerously close to never trying. At the time, she really wanted a bike to train for triathlons as a short-term alternative to running while healing from injuries sustained running a marathon in 2009. After some convincing, she purchased a cross-country bike; and instead of being a temporary fix, trail riding quickly became a passion. Tracey had to take a 2½ year hiatus, but returned to the sport in the summer of 2013, taking her first downhill clinic and instantly becoming hooked. Although still a beginner, the difference in her abilities now compared to only a year ago is all the motivation needed for her to keep pushing her limits and improve.
Between founding and running an online start-up company, working long hours in finance and living in Manhattan, finding time and a way to get on the trails has been a challenge, but Tracey is more determined than ever to spend as much time on a bike as possible this season.
Despite growing up in Marin County, CA surrounded by bike trails, Erin Johnson didn't really start mountain biking until the summer of 2011 in New England. She began riding cross country, but quickly became interested in downhill. She has a competitive skiing background, so the speed and adrenaline rush of gravity riding was in her comfort zone. She has worked with Kathi over time to transfer that comfort zone onto the bike. She rides mostly at Plattekill, but you will also find her at Highland, Sugarbush and Whiteface Mountains. Her favorite type of trail usually involves a steep, technical chute. This year she is focusing on overall endurance and carrying speed through flatter sections of trails by pedaling.
Outside of mountain biking, Erin is an avid skier and mountaineer. She lives just outside of Boston close to where she works as an Electrical Engineer for a defense contractor.
Jennie Ebbinghouser grew up riding a bike, stopped for a number of years until last season when she jumped back in full force. She competed in 2 races in 2013, and plans to do as many races this season as her schedule allows. Enduros will be Jennie's focus, and she also plans to do some downhill races. Jennie also started her daughters, ages 6 and 9, racing this year. The sense of accomplishment, joy, and fun that riding gives her is why she loves to do it. Pushing past physical limits, scaring the hell out of herself, and just having as much fun as possible are Jennie's goals for this season.
Joann DiGiulio began riding and racing in 1995. In that time she held the title of NJ women's Sport XC champ for two years and then went on to be the Plattekill Sport XC Champion (her husband was racing DH there at the time... Bye, bye NJ hills - hello NYS mountains!). She hung up her jersey in 2000 and had two children. Now Joann is back -- riding downhill and juggling teaching piano to kids (and adults!), ballet dance with her daughter, and trying to keep up with her downhiller grom son! Life is good!