Saturday, September 1, 2001 -- Oak Hill, WV
Concho Classic 12-hour MTB Relay Race
(iPO Event Id#: 2636)
Story and photos by Don Parks
A race with a view
Southern West Virginia was decimated by summer rains that caused
extensive flooding. The town of Minden and the nearby trails at ACE
were not spared. However, the folks in these parts are a hearty bunch
and it didn't take long before the rebuilding began. The hard work
that the ACE crew put in to repair the many washed out trails and
prepare for the first annual Concho Classic 12-hour MTB Relay Race
was evident everywhere.
The rains returned the day before the race only letting up as the race
was about to start at 9:00am Saturday morning. Eventually the sun
broke through the clouds, but not until all the early racers were
covered with a nice layer of mud. Clearing away the mud from the
faces of the racers revealed some big smiles. It seems that even with
the difficult muddy sections, the 12-mile plus course was a delight to
everyone. At least until the fatigue of endurance racing began to
take its toll.
Mountain biking at its best
After the first lap it was David Wall
leading Team Deliverance
to the front of the pack. His three person Male Pro team included
alternating laps with Bill Collin
and Robbie Cornett
they fought to keep the early lead they were given. The team finished
with 9 laps at 9:11pm for an average lap time of 1:21. That would be
one more lap than any other finisher.
Finishing with the second most laps at eight was the Male Solo winner,
Rich O'Neil, along with two three person Male Junior teams.
These two teams, Team Balzout and Team Peach Fuzz, battle the entire
race and it came down to that final eighth lap to determine a winner.
In the end it was Balzout's Brandon Lilly, Aaron Amick,
and Bob Lilly, taking the win over Peach Fuzz's Lucas Chandler,
Jeff King and Steven Nutt.
12 Hours later and it's quitting time!
Many more winners were crowned in an assortment of solo, two person,
and three person teams. And whatever place everyone finished, ACE was
throwing a party. While there hard work on the trails could be seen,
the hospitality they provide must be experienced. What do they
provide? Well just free race t-shirts, numerous prizes, a huge buffet
meal, free camping, live music, and even a special deal on a rafting
trip for all participants. They'll be at it again for next year and
you won't want to miss the next 12 hours at the Concho Classic.
Oh, and before you go, you may be asking like we did, what is
"Concho"? Concho was once a town that existed on what is now the
property of the ACE Adventure Center. You can even find it if you
search on MapQuest.com! The town is no more, just like the coal
mining heydays of Minden. But this once thriving community is still
evident along the trails by the remnants left behind, and the old
mines that are now sealed shut.