Sunday, September 3, 2000 -- Holly River State Park - Hacker Valley, WV
Holly River Revenge
Story and photos by Mike Monroe
To our surprise we found out at 11 o'clock we were in a no camping area. The superintendent of the park came and told us nicely that we had to go. We packed all our stuff up and headed down the road, all we needed was a place to lay our heads to get a good night's rest before the race. We found a place down the road a few miles right off to the side of the road. We set up camp in a hurry so we could go to sleep for the big day. The sun peeked through the tarp that I had slept under all night and told me it was time to get up and get ready.
I hopped out of my truck bed and got ready, and went to the
registration area to get the low down on the course. When I was
talking to Gene Wells, owner of Fat Tire Cycle and coordinator of the race,
he told me "As race sponsors we could not have ask for a better bunch
of people to work with The Holly River State Park Foundation were
there all the way, with a new course it takes more to get thing ready.
We figure it took somewhere Around 80 hours of trail research, and 56
volunteer man-hours, for trail maintenance and marking the trail."
After I walked a little bit of the course I figured this was going to
be an interesting day. The track was greasy in spots, rocky, some
wicked down hills, and 6,000 feet of vertical climb. This was sure
not a race for the weak at heart.
As they began to line up you could see the excitement and anticipation blazing in their eyes. When the flag dropped they were off as if being chased by wild animals. Benjie Klimas(2:03:37, 20 mile lap), Jason Laxton(2:10:13, 20 mile lap), and Kevin Leyh(2:12:40, 20 mile lap) all in the Pro Expert Men Class were the three that set the pace. They raced tire to tire the whole race.
Cai Clothier(2:59:50, 13 mile lap) won the Junior Men's division (14 and under class) he is 8 years old and he has been racing for two years. I couldn't believe it when he came through one of the creek crossings on that bike that looked bigger than him. He said his goal is to beat his brother Espe Clothier(1:55:44, 13 mile lap) one day.
The racers raced through the last creek crossing with all they had so they could be finished, get a tasty sorbet and get some of that great lasagna! There weren't any serious injuries, just scratches, bumps and scrapes. The race was a success and I hope to see everyone out there again next year.