Welcome to Quick Fill.
It’s shaping up to be a great weekend of GNCC Racing here at the Summit Bechtel Reserve in Beckley, West Virginia. The Mountaineer GNCC is coming together nicely and this promises to be a fun weekend full of some great racing. We’ll have some info on the track coming up a little later in this week’s edition of Quick Fill, and you’ll definitely want to read up on it because this one is looking like loads of fun. Of course, with great fun comes great responsibility and keep in mind that this venue is a very unique facility, and let’s make sure we treat it with as much respect as everyone here has treated us with!
With that said, we’re going to keep this week’s edition of Quick Fill brief as there’s a lot of work left to do to make sure this weekend’s race goes as smoothly as possible. Enjoy your weekend and we’ll see you at The Mountaineer!
Catching Up With Ken (Ken Hill)
Well the Mason Dixon GNCC provided everyone with some serious challenges and a surprise ending on Sunday! The dust was bad but we have raced in worse and the only salvation I could find was at least there was a breeze to help clear some of it, as well as the cloud cover that mainly disappeared on Sunday. By the time the PM race started there were knee-deep silt sections that would no doubt play a role in things as rider after rider started going down with engines that couldn’t handle the massive amount of fine dust that was getting sucked in. Pro row became a flurry of activity as air filters were swapped out and when the dust settled, Thad Duvall had a win after one of the most trying races of the season thus far. It was great seeing a mix up on the podium from a racing stand point and it makes for interesting press which hopefully helps us all but there is no denying it was a costly event for many. Trevor Bollinger hammered out a podium finish and Ricky Russell seems to have a new shine on his program as he made another podium appearance at Mason Dixon. We will be watching him as we head into the final two rounds and see if he can’t fight his way into the top three again.
On the ATV side, it was once again the Walker Fowler show as he does exactly what he needs to on the track to win races. He makes it look so easy that you really need to listen to his podium interview to hear how he wrecked or ran into issues just like everyone else but somehow he manages to shake off what ever comes at him and streak to win after win and here he clinched championship number five! Joining Fowler was Jarod McClure who has had an up and down season but came out swinging here on the mountain and Devon Feehan took his spot on the podium after an exceptional effort. Feehan might be one to watch in the final two rounds but another name is joining the XC1 riders after clinching the XC2 championship and that is none other than John Glauda. It is always exciting watching a rider take the next step and I’ve been told many times that it is a new ball game on the front row so we will see how deep he can cut into the class in the final two rounds!
Fowler and Glauda were not the only champions crowned as Traci Pickens locked up another WXC title after putting in a solid year behind the bars. Yamaha has to be stoked as their riders put big blue all over the record books! Now that the pressure is off, we will get to see who will step up and look for redemption, which usually makes for some great racing.
The weekend, especially Saturday was insane in all honesty. Eight races and a dog show sure made for one very long day, but it was fun! The eMTB race crowned Charlie Mullins with the series first champion in that style of racing and if you haven’t watched one of these events you should, its a ton of hard work, physical endurance and quiet enough that listening to the cheers and jeers makes for a very fun race. With so much going on throughout the day it makes the time go buy very fast but I did manage to hit Team Faiths bake sale and snuck off to eat my piece of sugar free angel food cake which was mighty good! The dog show is always a hoot and there were some real challenges thrown in with the tunnel probably being the biggest and only a few managed to get their pup to go through it.
All in all a great weekend of racing and we have a really big one on deck as we head to a brand new location that to me brings back memories of our families early racing days. The new venue should be tailor made for all of us and the terrain will be more than enough of a challenge. Be sure to come out and watch some action or sign up and show us what you got! That is all from me this week as I try and put the finishing touches around here before old man winter shows up which is hard to do seeing it was 94 yesterday! As always, may God continue to bless us all and please be safe in all you do!
Update from The Mountaineer (Jared Bolton)
With an all-new racecourse on an all-new facility coming up this weekend, it’s not uncommon to find ourselves wondering what to expect. Some folks may think the existing facility trails could be fast and wide open, but the crew has been hard at work all week to create miles and miles of brand new trail. The course is a little on the shorter side, but it’s slow, technical and has an old-school feel to it. This will put lap times closer to what we’re used to; so don’t worry about a shorter track.
When you take off from the start, you’ll be starting just before the one-mile mark. You’ll zig-zag your way through some rocky off-camber woods and some short field sections before dropping into the woods again and head out to the two-mile mark. This section has a bit of rock in it, and is mixed with off-camber trail, some up and some downhill areas and a few flat trails as well. This continues all the way to the three-mile mark, where you’ll come to some slower and technical off-camber trail that leads to all the way to the four-mile mark.
After the four, there’s a little bit of easier trail that will give you a little break before getting back into some technical trails that zigzag up and down hill all the way to the five-mile mark. From there, it’s pretty much the same story to the six and seven-mile marks. This is a lot of thick woods with gently rolling hills and some rocky areas to add a pretty good challenge. After the seven, the 1PM bike race will head into some special bike-only trail that has a pretty tough rock garden in it.
This section will tie back into the main trail on a short logging road before dropping down a good, technical downhill section all the way to the eight-mile mark. At the eight, there’s a short, rocky hillclimb up to a faster trail that will lead you to another twisty, tight section that will eventually work it’s way back and forth across a hillside all the way to the nine-mile mark. From there, it’s about a half-mile of twisty trail up to the finish, and then back out towards the start. Overall, The Mountaineer promises to be a very fun but challenging event. We’re pretty excited to get rolling and we hope you are too!