The final Short’s Brewing Fat Bike Series event of 2015 takes off under the slight, alien chance of rain. Yeah. Rain.
After two events run in frigid conditions with driving snow, the series comes full circle Up North with the final race under almost perfect conditions. It’s only the small percentage chance of rain that could possibly mar one of the biggest parties on two wheels. For the second season, the series wraps up at Timber Ridge’s Suds’n’Snow Microbrew Festival, and weaving between beer stalls and live music, the race is also one of the fastest around.
Wide open trails punctuated by one steep climb each lap and a short section of singletrack, it’s a circuit race on snow and a great chance for racers and teams to try for a last podium or victory before attentions turn toward Barry-Roubaix. Missing from Saturday’s start line will be series leader Jorden Wakeley and runner-up Sean Kickbush. The pair are spending some Q.T. (quality time) bonding in the American Southwest (see below) and though their spots in the series are all but out of reach, there’s plenty of room at the top for a new race winner.
Einstein Racing’s Ryan “Mr. President” Kennedy is the top candidate for the win, but there’s a deep field on the line, including Kickbush’s M-22 teammate Keegan Myers. Kennedy showed his form at the 906 Polar Roll two weeks back, riding to 4th overall, just ahead of teammate Chris Kushman, another rider more than capable of taking a win.
The Women’s Open will be a point of pride for series leader Susan Vigland. Up by 6 points, she needs to finish a lap to assure victory, but don’t be surprised to see her out on the pressure and cap off her first full fat bike season with a win. She’ll take on teammates Melissa Socia and Michelle Howard, plus new signing Beth Collins. The Women’s Master’s series is wrapped up, and Dawn Cluchey will be riding to see where she stacks up in the Open class when the gun goes off.
The Men’s Master’s is separated by just a single point, with Craig Webb holding a slim lead over Chris Hansen. Dave Hintz isn’t far off the pace, and will be riding to hold onto his hard-earned podium place.
Course and conditions could play a factor, with the two-hour format and fast, open trail harkening back to December 21’s Thirst Mutilator. After two straight frigid and technical 50km events, the advantage moves back to riders with a big engine and ample speed. With temperatures still frigid midweek, the course should hold up well, even in balmy, almost-above-freezing weather.
Things For Jorden And Sean To Talk About In the Car
- 18th Century British Literature-Have you even read “Wide Saragosa Sea”?
- Jennifer Lawrence-Good at sports, too?
- The True Meaning of Mortality-Is Death the end, or is the real death in all we have not lived?
- What do you like on your pizza?
- Plan an Out and Back for mid-April
- Are you signed up for (fill in race 6 months away)?
- The Knicks- They’re pretty bad
- What season of Breaking Bad are you on?