GNCC Racing

Quick Fill #15: This Week in GNCC

Quick Fill #15: This Week in GNCC

Thursday, May 9, 2024 | 4:20 PM
Thursday, May 9, 2024 | 4:20 PM

Welcome to Quick Fill.

It’s time to go racing! We’re back in action this weekend at Powerline Park and the race weekend is here. This marks our first visit back to Powerline Park since 2018, and a lot has changed in that time, but a lot remains the same classic Powerline Park that people came to know and love. The biggest difference is that we’re running in the spring, so the leaves are green which is a lot different than the Powerline Park of old that was always ran late in the season.

Additionally, there’s been very, very little riding taking place here throughout the last six years, so a lot of the old trails have grown over and tightened up in places. This really changes the feel here, and a lot of that hardpacked dirt that Powerline was known for has loosened up. Overall, taking a few years off and coming back has made the Powerline facility even better than ever. The pits and parking look a little different too as some new power line and gas line projects have come through the property and opened up a few areas in the fields.

Before we give a low down on the racecourse, we want to share some news on a couple of GNCC regulars who have found themselves in some tough spots from two totally separate accidents. First, while we were racing at Hoosier long time racer on both bikes and quads, Walt Schumacher, made his annual trip out to Utah to ride the Moab area which is something he’s been doing for a number of years. While out riding, Walt suffered a pretty serious spinal cord injury and has a long road of rehab ahead of him. Walt is one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet as well as a pretty positive and motivated guy, so he’s in high spirits, but thoughts and prayers always go a long way! His sister setup a GoFundMe to help Walt offset some of the costs associated with his recovery and travel home. If you have a few bucks to spare, you can donate HERE.

Last Sunday, eMTB racer Jeff Bolte suffered a pretty serious crash as well. Jeff was involved in a crash on his mountain bike that left him with a very serious jaw injury, as well as fractures to his spine and pelvis. Jeff is another great guy that enjoys the GNCC Racing Nation and giving back to the cycling community acting as a youth mountain bike coach. Jeff is also self-employed so he’s going to need a little extra help as well through his road to recovery. If you’re able to donate, there’s a GoFundMe for Jeff as well which you can find HERE. Thoughts and Prayers go out to both Walt and Jeff. You hate to see these kinds of things happen to anyone, but it always stings a little more when it happens to great gentlemen like these two! 

Now lets talk about Powerline Park. As I mentioned earlier, this really feels like a much different Powerline around the majority of the course, with a few areas that feel like the Powerline Park everyone will remember. When you take off from the start, you’ll be starting just before the finish line around the 13-mile mark. (Yes, I said 13!) You’ll bypass the finish off the start and head out on your full lap. The first mile is a mix of short woods sections and short field sections before you pick up a longer woods section just before the one-mile mark. This will be a bit tighter for the ATVs and medium speed for the bikes, and flows back and forth really well. 

This continues around for about half a mile until you’ll pick up the field, woods and field again over to the two-mile mark. At the two, you’ll have another bit of field before dropping into the woods again and bounce in and out of the woods and fields a few more times all the way to the three-mile mark. You’ve got a longer field section after the three and then it’s up into the woods for a while. This section after the three will be a bit on the faster side, and the bikes will split off into a tighter and twisty section around here. 

This brings you past the four-mile mark, into the field again, then it’s back into the woods for quite a while. The woods leading you over to the five will be a bit of medium speed trail that will open up in a few spots and tighten up in a few areas as well. Just before you get to the six-mile mark, you’ll come to what we call the “Back Field” which isn’t really the kind of field you’re used to riding. This field has patches of large brush growing around smaller trees that you’ll be zigzagging around and through. It’s a bit different than what we’re used to and kind of reminds you of something out west, but with a tighter east coast feel to it as there’s still a lot of trees as well. 

You’ll work through the “Back Field Bushes” for just under a mile and drop into the hard woods again to the seven-mile mark. This section has a lot of smaller up and downhill sections and while it’s a little faster, it flows really well. That brings you all the way to the eight-mile mark where you’ll pick up some tighter trail again for a bit that eventually opens back up again at the nine-mile mark. The PM races will split off at the 9.5 and run down into “Dead Deer Hollow”. This is one of those classic Powerline Park sections with some wet and muddy rocks in a valley before you have to climb back up out of Dead Deer and tie back into the AM racecourse. 

From there, you’ll pass the ten-mile mark and get into some more classic Powerline Park sections. You’ll zigzag back and forth through the woods, down into Happy Hollow just before the 11-mile mark and have the option to climb the big hill out of Happy Hollow or take the easy (but longer!) way out. These come back together and cross over to the 11, then it’s a bit of faster trail underneath the powerlines all the way over to the 12-mile mark where things tighten back up again. 

That will bring back out into the field above the starting line to make one full lap here at Powerline Park. Overall, it’s shaping up to be a really fun racecourse and those who raced Powerline years ago just may end up calling this their favorite Powerline Park event they’ve ever experienced. 

That’s going to do it for this week’s edition of Quick Fill. Enjoy your weekend and we’ll see you in the woods of Ohio!