My new favorite Rider:
We just got home from watching the world Championship Hill Climbs over in Jackson Hole.
Congratulations once again to the Jackson Hole Snow Devils for putting on a great event!
If you have never been to the world championships, I highly recommend it. This year provided some of the most exciting and challenging hill climb racing that I have seen in a long time. Videos and pictures of the hill at Snow King Mountain do not do it justice. It’s big, long, and the top third is steeper than a cow’s face with a snow covered rock garden hidden throughout most of it. Add the blue and red race gates that designate the required race line to the equation, and you get some pretty amazing competition at all levels.
All of the Riders that qualify and compete in the event, are all awesome in my book. It takes a whole lot of practice, dedication, skill and courage to take a shot at that particular hill. While I’m at it, I’ll give a special shout out to our Home Town favorite # 444 for a great showing, we are really proud of you, even though we know you were expecting better times, you did awesome all the same.
So while driving home after a full weekend of Hill Climb racing, I was trying to decide if I had a new favorite rider for 2017. All of the pros were there with their long list of sponsors and immaculate race trailers, my personal favorite manufacturer had a spectacular showing, and I got to visit with many of the competitors from the other race teams throughout the week, all of which were super nice and seemed like great people. I was kind of stumped and couldn’t decide.
Then I thought of a Rider that isn’t a racer. I remembered when they started riding and how far they have come. This particular rider got her first introduction to snowmobiling about 7 years ago while riding in front of my youngest 20 something around a winter trap line. After a couple months of her helmet busting him in the chin, it was decided she would graduate to our old 550 fan cooled back up sled. She was mortified of the notion, of flying solo, but with a little encouragement and coaching she putted along in the rear for the remainder of the year.
After that, she was hooked, and quickly bought her own 600 mountain sled the next season. Looking back on things now, her “baptism by powder” from the rest of us was unmerciful, and we could have showed a whole lot more consideration for the new rookie, but she always gave it her all, and learned quickly.
Today she rides her own 800 Mountain Sled, and pretty much “hangs with the boys” all day every day. She can pick her own line and hold it as well as anyone that rides with us, and probably utilizes pure technique better than any of us knuckle draggers. We gave her the nickname “Half a Tank” early on in the journey, but at this point we may have to come up with something new.
Nah… Half a Tank it is.
Hope you all have a great spring and summer, See you on the hill next year!