Returning from the 2010 adventure in Mexico, and taking the title of team captain is Victoria Hett, the former Canadian National Enduro Champion (2009). Hett will be aboard her Pacific Gas Gas again, and will be rejoined by Alemeda Rive, aboard a Western Power Sports Yamaha. "She's one of the toughest women I've ever met," said Hett about her teammate. "I'm glad to have her back."
New for this year is motocrosser turned enduro racer Amber Giroux. "I'm really excited to be aboard," the cross over queen said. "I'm glad I've got those two as teammates; they're awesome!" Amber will be riding aboard her Rainey Creek Power Sports Husqvarna.
"I think the biggest thing this year will be being prepared," said Almeda, a sentiment echoed by Tori.
The stress and exhausted that comes from riding six days is unparallelled in any other form of riding, and for those who have experienced it, there aren't even words strong enough to describe the way you feel coming off the bike on day 5, knowing you've got to get back on the next morning and give everything you've got one last time.
"There was a point, on day 3, I was so sick, like ill, and tired, and exhausted... I couldn't even take my gear off. I've never been that low before," said Tori about her experience with riding with flu like symptoms in Mexico.
"They've been keeping me in the dark," said Amber. "Which I like. I mean, I know it's hard, and I'm gonna train my butt of to be physically fit and ready for it, but if they tell me all their horror stories now, I've got six months to get all worked up."
And staying calm might just be the key. "It's a head game for sure," says Rive. "If you know you can do something, it's doable, but when you're exhausted, and you're minds on auto pilot, things that are easy become so very hard..."
Hett summed it up nicely. "When you're in that state of mind trails that would be junior level, something you could do in your sleep, become insurmountable; everything is just that much harder."
It's going to be a long road, but the ladies have lots of help. The girls have lots of people to thank, and will be in touch as the season starts kicking into high gear. Their goals are as high as their spirits; Tori is determined to bring home gold, while Almeda and Amber are driven to finish.
Tori's Sponsors: Gas Gas Pacific, Inside MotoX & Off Road, Gamma Distributing, Riders Edge Suspension, Gnarly Parts & Accessories, Fasst Company (Flexx Bars), Scorpion Racing, Valley Motosport, a Vicious Cycle, Bump MX, Adrenaline Distributing, Advanced Pavetech, and Advertising Works.
Almeda's Sponsors: Western Power Sports, Inside MotoX & Off Road, Yamaha Canada, Mongoose Machine, Rekluse, Fly Racing, Toys for Boys, SpeedDemonBikes.com, Gamma Sales, Kermaxx, Golden Tyre, Dragon Optics and DTS Suspension.
Amber's Sponsors: Rainy Creek Power Sports, Inside MotoX & Off Road, Gamma Sales, Kermaxx, PrintWerx, Sosa Original Graphics, RT Suspension, Elemental Fitness, FMF, Fly Racing, Dragon Optics, Metal Mulisha, Alpinestar, Mellennium Directional Services, Ogio and Custom Fiberglass Contractors, Ltd.