Aussie Champ “Trekky” gets points on the board in Life Time Grand Prix
28 April 2023
2023 Sea Otter Classic
The first round of the 2023 Life Time Grand Prix came just one week after the Belgian Waffle Ride where Brendan (Trekky) Johnston placed an impressive 4th. This years Sea Otter Classic was a 110km (70 mile) mountain bike race with gravel bikes being switched out for the wide handlebars and fat tyres. With 70,000 people attending the event, and a highly competitive field racing there was plenty of hype for the race ahead.
With a strong field present, the start of the Sea Otter was more reflective of typical XCO racing as riders battled for position to limit any potential of being gapped and falling off the front group.
There is still a significant drafting element to these long MTB races and if you lose contact with a faster group it can really cost you. Trekky found himself chasing from early in the race, as he battled through ongoing back pain that has plagued him over recent weeks.
For the next three and a half hours Trekky settled into a long time trial. The lead group would split up over the course of the day and Trekky worked well with Konny Looser, the Swiss National Champion, to pick up a few of the front riders towards the finish. After more than four hours of racing, Keegan Swenson would take the win ahead of Russell Finsterwald and Christopher Blevins in a time of 4:03:41. Trekky would lose the sprint against Andrew L’Esperance and finish 8th on the day.
By the numbers: Nearly half the race (1:45:30) at threshold zone or higher!
You can see the full results for the Sea Otter Classic here.
This places Trekky 6th in the overall standings for the Life Time Grand Prix.
“ I’m looking forward to getting back to Aus and getting on top of my lingering back injury. I’m really pleased with the start of the US campaign.” – Trekky
Balancing travel, time zone changes and going back and forth between winter and summer seasons will make for an interesting year for Trekky. He will now head back home to Australia to recover before a trip back to North America for the next leg of the Life Time Grand Prix.
The next round on June 3, is the 320km (200 mile) UNBOUND Gravel.