Saturday, August 26, 2006 - Sunday, August 27, 2006 -- Oak Hill, WV
ACE New River Bike Fest - WVMBA #10 (iPO Event Id#: 7232)
Story and photos by JR Petsko
For starters, the back drop for the event was the beautiful New River
Gorge. Add to that, scenic and hard-core mountain biking trails that
are very well maintained, race t-shirts that where so nice I would
have paid for one, and a burrito buffet after the race. Oh and did I
mention someone racing in Teva's (check out the pictures for proof).
As a former mountain bike racer all I could say was, WOOT!!
Even with all this fun and excitement going on before and after the race, the riders still had enough energy in them to tackle a very fast and technical race course. With trail names like Rigormortis, and Vulture's Roost who wouldn't be pumped to hit the trails.
At the start of the event I was amazed to see some of the folks that
rolled up to the start line. The husband and wife duo of
Gunnar and Betsy Shogren and Marc Glass where
there and ready to race!? All three of them competed the pervious day
in a Sprint, Splash 'n Spin triathlon in
As the riders made there way around the prologue I ran to the first section of single track, and wouldn't you know it, Betsy was the first woman rider to pass by me. Following just behind her a few seconds back was overall series point's leader Cassie Smith, and Meredith Erlewine not far behind.
After the last rider passed me by at this spot I jumped in my car to
take some more photos at a rock garden that was about seven miles into
the course. By then I figured Betsy would fatigue do to the pervious
day's event. That would not be the case.
Then Meredith came hammering by me only a few minutes back of Cassie. Taking control of the technical rock garden area, Meredith looked to be riding in top form. As the pro women entered their second lap of the event their running order would stay the same all the way to the finish.
Meredith finished third overall for the women in a very respectable
time of 2:49:56. Ahead of here in second place (still smiling) was
Cassie finishing in 2:38:20. Keep on smiling girl! Unbelievable to
me it was Betsy taking home her second victory in two straight days
crossing the line in a blistering 2:28:24.
Taking home the over all victory in the race was the Davis, West Virginia's own Nick Waite finishing in an unbelievable time of 1:55:03. Nick was the only two lap rider to complete the course in less than two hours. Finishing second overall on the day was Steve Hill, also putting in a great ride on the day crossing the line in 2:02:31.
Special thanks to Meghan, and all the staff at ACE for an unbelievable time down there. Hope to see you next year!