Usually when we think of Napa, we think of Range Rovers and froofy wine-tasting tours that inevitably get sloppy and end with a brutal hangover and two cases of overpriced Chardonnay. But this weekend, there's a different type of intoxicant going down in the NA-PA -- cross-country mountain bike racing.

A rite of Spring in the tiny hamlet of Angwin, the 2006 Napa Valley Dirt Classic rolls to the line this Sunday on the beautiful campus of Pacific Union College (PUC).

Beginning at 10:30 AM on Sunday, rain or shine, close to 400 racers will venture into the verdant forests of Howell Mountain in search that perfect bouquet of singletrack, adrenaline, and pain. The 22-mile course snakes through the private lands of PUC on a kaleidoscope of different trail types, textures, and topographies.

To do well in the Classic is to know the course, and baby, the legs on this course . . .