Mike Piker

43, Jackson, Wy. Mike has been an avid mountain bike rider and racer for 14 years. He has competed in numerous events including multi-day mountain bike stage races, 12 and 24 hour solo/team races, 50 & 100 mile marathon races and many one day cross country events. On occasion he has been known to participate in road time trials, hill climbs and even an X-terra off road triathlon. When he is not in the pain cave at a race he can be found riding the local trails.

During the spring and fall seasons Mike works long hours as a field service engineer/consultant. His summers are spent on the Jackson area single track working for Friends of Pathways/US Forest Service as a Trail Ambassador. It is a unique career balance he finds very rewarding.

What is your favorite race/ride and why?
The Breck Epic. This is a real mountain bike stage race; road racers who lack technical bike handling skills will struggle. The race is very well organized and held in Breckenridge, Co. with most of the course above 10,000 feet. It has a grass roots feel and by the end of the racing week you feel like part of a big family.

What are you proudest of having done on your bike?
What’s been your worst day on a bike?
My proudest and worst day on a bike happened during the same race; the 2009 Bow 80 held west of Calgary, AB.

A cold rain was steadily falling when the race started. However, the forecast was for clearing skies and warmer temperatures later in the morning. I thought to myself, if I can get past the start everything will be ok….

On the main climb up Cox Hill the weather deteriorated to full-on blizzard conditions. I faced 40+ mph winds and whiteout conditions wearing only a lycra kit, thin riding gloves and a thin lightweight shell. As I crested the summit I knew I was in trouble and that the race was now all about survival.

The ensuing technical descent over snow covered rocks, roots and switchbacks was a hellish mix of riding, falling, pushing then repeat. To make matters worse, as I descended the snow turned into freezing rain coating my gloves, helmet and shell with ice. I had long lost feeling in my extremities and was physically and mentally blown when I came to the last aid station. I asked the woman there how far was it to the finish and to please feed me a gel and some water since my hands didn’t work and I was violently shivering. I couldn’t stop but for a few seconds or my body would shut down like a switch. Somehow, I managed to keep moving and forced myself to ride the last 10 miles of cold muddy two-track and made it to the finish.

Of the 220+ starters only 45 finished. I finished 23rd and consider my effort to reach the finish line to be the hardest yet proudest day I have spent on a bike.

What do you do when not biking?
Backcountry skiing is a close second to mountain biking. During the winter I can usually be found on Teton Pass looking for fresh powder turns or doing laps on Snow King Mountain.

How did you end up in Jackson?
I was having too many beers with my girlfriend at the time (wife now) when I jokingly suggested we start new lives together in Jackson, Wy. Amazingly, she said yes. The next day we still thought is was a great idea. Two days after that I bought an old 4Runner, loaded most of our belongings and drove to Jackson. Fifteen years later, we still haven’t left.

What do you ride?
On the single track I ride/race a Cannondale Scalpel 1 29er, Niner Air Nine Carbon
On the road I ride a Cervelo S3 w/Sram Red
During Cyclocross season I ride a Jamis SuperNova
On the snow I ride a lime green Wildfire “Fatbike”

2012 Race Schedule

1. Run and Ride - 
2. 20th Annual Pedalfest Intermountain Cup - 
3. Boise 9 to 5
4. Cache to Game – June 
5. Targhee Hill climb TBA
6. Teton Pass Hill climb TBA
7. Galena Grinder - 
8. Peirre’s Hole 50
9. Breck Epic - 
10. Teton Pass-Kicker
11. Park City Point to Point
12. 24 Hour World Championship - 
13. Sept & Oct cyclocross series events in Victor and Rexburg.

Racing Resume
1st Overall Butte 50, 2010
1st Overall Boise 9 to 5, Mens Duo, 2011
1st Pierre Hole 50, Mens Masters, 2009
1st Moose Cross, Mens Masters 40+, 2010
1st Overall (Course Record 25 mile course) Togwotee Winter Classic Snow Bike Race, 2010
2nd Overall, Grand Targhee Snow Bike Race, 2012
2nd Targhee 5hr Race; Mens Masters 40+, 2011
2nd Breck Epic 6 day MTB Stage Race, Mens 80+ Duo, 2009, 2010 & 2011
2nd 24 Hours of Targhee, Mens Duo, 2008
2nd 18 Hours of Fruita, Mens Solo, 2009
3rd Cascade Cream Puff 100, Mens Veterans 35 – 44, 2006
3rd Moose Roubaix
6th Trans Rockies 7 day MTB Stage Race, Mens 80+ Duo, 2007

Riding Hard at the Breck Epic MTB Stage Race

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