Snowshoe takes place in the mountains of West Virginia. The views are incredible, the terrain is rough, rocky, rooty, and hilly. Last year when I E-biked the track, I felt severely under prepared for this race. Going into this year, I took a lot more time to prep. I even went for a swim with my dirt bike the weekend before. We took it seriously.. haha
If you have been keeping up with me for a year or so, you know Snowshoe is the round where I hurt my hand/wrist last year. So, I came with a REDEMPTION attitude.
Saturday I walked 6 miles of the track with the Raines’. It rained, we found water holes, mud holes, big logs, and took in the terrain. I skipped out on the Howard’s Hole chaos. If you are unfamiliar with that, go to YouTube and type in ‘Snowshoe Howard’s Hole’ and you will learn all you need to know.
It rained on the mountain 5 days straight. Because of that and the issues the quads had, our track was shortened significantly. I think it was 5 or 6 miles long. It was still technical but yet fast.
Unlike other GNCC’s, we started in the village of the Snowshoe mountain on a paved road, live engine start, 5 per row. I was on row 27. That put 100+ racer’s in front of me. We also got to run Howard’s Hole this year. It’s big mud hole full of boulders or bottomless ruts. My first lap through there, I buried my bike. I lost a ton of time. However long it took for my entire class and 4 classes behind me to pass me. When I finally got it out, I hit my brake pedal on a rock and bent it so far in, it wasn’t usable. I remained focus with one goal, moving forward and making passes. My next two laps, I made it through Howard’s Hole “clean”. The trail traffic got very intense. One of the hill climbs had at least 30 rider’s stopped or stuck on it. It was crazy but not surprising. I didn’t miss my rear brake a ton other than steep downhills with sharp corners at the bottom and following others who had rear brakes. I run a Rekluse clutch so I was picking up speed. It was sketchy and came close to plowing a lot of guys over. I finished 5th in my class. I am not thrilled with my mud hole capabilities but I am learning. Massive thanks to the Yamaha mechanics and spectators pointing lines and helping me get unstuck!
My race was only half of the excitement of the weekend…
Thorn Devlin wanted to race Snowshoe in XC3, so WE made it happen as a team effort. He had ridden the bone stock Gas Gas 125 a few times leading up to this race. His pure skill showed pulling off the win by 10 minutes and finishing 20th overall! Bonecutter Off Road and I are incredibly stoked to be a part of Thorn’s program this year. It has been such a fun year doing things that are FUN!