I know I made a typo in the title. I meant to call it "UTE CUP MEMORIES THREAD" 1993 was my first UTE and a memorable UTE cup for me as well... Near Gunnison - Dale Malasek and I rode out there in his old brown Ford van. We were testing since Wednesday, and in the end, we put larger pilot jets in for high altitude. Changed from #35 to a #42 I think. That got rid of the bog when you snapped open the throttle just off idle. the rest of the jetting was of course leaner. On Saturday a GG rider had boiled-out all of his antifreeze and got the bike hot enough to scorch the paint on the cylinder exterior. He had actually melted-down the head o-rings. That Saturday evening I am fixing his bike, drained what was left of the water, had the head off and cleaning everything and replacing the o-rings etc... He calmly tells our little crowd that after his overheating episode and as he had no water source on top of the mountain, he had refilled his radiator with his pee.... I had a clean loop on my 1993 GG GT25-T "Ducados Jordi Tarrés Replica" There was a series of sections based in lava and the grip was unreal! A ranger was overseeing a section on the perimeter of a round volcanic crater lake on the mountain. I was chatting with him while waiting in line for my turn to ride. He explained that the lake was stocked with fish by dropping minnows from a helicopter. He followed with a punch line; "The hardest part of the job is strapping parachutes on every one of those little buggers" We had an unfortunate encounter with a group of hikers. We pulled over and killed our engines to let them walk past. They were obviously tree-huggers as one of them unleashed a tirade upon us. Instead of participating in his discussion, we started the bikes and rode away. To this day, I don't understand why Trials riders are lumped into the general off-road users genre. In reality, I think we should be counted within the same group as mountain bicyclists. I know it is unrealistic, but the reality is that we do leave a very small imprint upon the places that we ride. For sure, we do scratch some granite with our skid plates occasionally which leaves some trace elements of aluminum out there. For sure, we do less damage than the "jeepers" and most certainly we are not leaving giant pieces of broken fiberglass tops and windshields and shattered side glass windows in the forest.. (everywhere I ride that is shared with Jeepers, I see Jeep roll-over remnants in the forest.) The following year in the UTE, we were using radiator catch tanks so that when the coolant expanded, the water was trapped and would be sucked back into the system when the coolant temperature dropped. They worked perfectly and we eliminated the loss of coolant problem that had plagued us in the years past. I had devised the system using model airplane fuel tanks, they could be zip-tied to the frame rail and plugged into the overflow hose on the radiator. In 1995 we flew our bikes out there to Colorado Springs and rented a box truck and a Chevy Suburban. I was using my 327cc 1995 JT35 with the first Keihin PWK28 and it was awesome! I won some Nationals that year on that bike. At high altitude, it was the ticket. As I recall, it felt about the same as a 250 at sea-level, so you could rely upon it putting the power down when you needed it. Ron "Rascal" Bertrand and his wife Debbie spent the week with us. We stayed in a luxury Condo in Breckenridge, as it was the "off season" there, we had the whole building and town to ourselves. Rascal and I would put our JT35 bikes into neutral and kill the engine, then race like mad-men down the mountain. We called it "neutral racing" and we were laughing so hard. As many of you know, there are ditches cut into the trail in intervals so as to drain away the rain water. We were jumping those and banking off the berms on the corners. This was the year that we figured-out that hyperventilating before you enter the section builds-up an extra supply of oxygen in the blood and dramatically reduces the muscle fatigue that can set-in during a complicated or physically stressing group of obstacles. That same year, there were the guys who thought the other had done the "pre-mix" of the gasoline... For a while it was the fault of GG that their almost new bikes had seized while climbing under heavy load on the mountain trials. We thought it odd that they were the only piston seizures. Until they figured-out the no oil was mixed into the gasoline problem and were gentlemanly enough to tell us. The most amazing part of that one is that the bikes finished both days. There was some rattling going on in there but they ran. When I got home, I found that my trusted employee had quit. He left a many pages long letter explaining how terrible of a person that I was. He explained that I was out playing while he ran the business and that all of my successes were because of him. He was very well paid, but it seemed that he resented the fact that I was competing in the trials nationals while he had to work. For the next two years, I ran the constantly growing GG spare parts warehouse completely by myself. In late 1997 I had taken my Brother Tim into the "family" company and he was up to speed. So once again, I was able to get away for the 1998 UTE. I went with three life-long trials friends from here in the Indiana area. Jim Wilder and I drove out in my brand new 1998 GMC 2500 GasGas van. (Going from out East, the UTE is at least a seven day adventure.) That year, we made a commitment to take as many photos as we could. We had a blast riding the days before the event, getting acclimated to the altitude. (Sheep Mountain at Fairplay) On the Thursday before we took a ride to the very top of the mountain. We signed our names and date to the log inside the sealed plastic tube tied to the pole at the highest point on the trail. We realized that we had a group of "Jims" so we lined up and took a photo of what I refer to as "Team Jim" Left to right: Jim Wilder, Jim Snell, Jim Zigan, and Jim Zuroske I was riding my 1996/97 JTRX 338cc GG "Long stroke" with a Keihin PWK28 carburetor. The bike was UNBELIEVABLE for the UTE! The perfect high altitude scooter... Here are a couple more images from that terrific week in 1998. My mile-long wheelie with the Colorado Springs area in the distant background. We stopped at this gas stop with our smoking hot bikes, Pierce had a little overflow when he filled and some steam rose as the gas dripped onto the hot parts... I asked simply out of curiosity if they had a fire extinguisher? On the next loop, the trucks were not near the fuel cans... Pierce Ferriter and myself in this image The weather was perfect, great times with friends. I titled this one of Jim Wilder and myself. "Top of the World" We did take some great images that year, and we swore we would NEVER miss another UTE. Unfortunately for me, by 1999, the business had never stopped growing and it was imperative for my family business and the reputation of the brand that I be here as much as possible, supplying spares to the thousands of GG trials bikes now in use in the USA. I had stopped competing in the National Championship in 1997 so as to be here and keep the warehouse open for all of the customers who did not ride in championship series, which by then, far exceeded those who did compete. Dale Malasek was covering the championship, I was back here in Indiana at the warehouse, taking care of the dealerships and the rest of the GG customers. I never returned to the UTE cup, 1998 being my last time at the best trial in the USA.