Moutain bikers gear up for national finals
A season’s worth of pedaling sweat and effort will culminate this weekend for South Shore area mountain bikers in the final Chevy Truck National Championship Series race.
Matt Gerken, Amber Ramos and Shaun Palmer will be among those competing in the event at Mount Snow, Vt.
Gerken, 21, who recently earned a sponsorship from Chevy Trucks, is looking to improve on last year’s national championships effort.
“My goal is to finish in the top 10 and take the under-23 title,” said Gerken, a cross-country rider who was third in under-23 and 14th overall last year.
Ramos, 11, has been tearing up the under-18 and other young women’s categories in both cross-country and downhill events. She’ll hope to continue that dominance.
Palmer, a downhiller with penchants for speed and attitude, will be competing after overcoming a broken collarbone suffered earlier in the season.
The Chevy Truck National Championship Series is the premier mountain bike racing series in the United States. In 1998, the NORBA NCS consists of seven cross-country races and six downhill, dual slalom and observed trials events. These races take place at seven different venues across the nation from May to August, culminating with the national finals at Mount Snow.
The 1998 Chevy Truck NCS will feature some of the world’s best riders as they compete for both the overall NCS titles and the national champions’ titles in all four mountain biking disciplines.
Participation in the 1997 series was up more than eight percent over the
previous season, with a total of more than 15,000 event entries. In addition to professional riders, the National Championship Series hosts riders of all levels to come out and compete among other mountain bike enthusiasts of similar ability.
The 1998 NCS kicked off May 14-17 at Snow Summit Resort in the town of Big Bear Lake, Calif. Following that first-round competition, the series traveled to Seven Springs Resort, near Pittsburgh, Pa., June 4-7. Round three, a cross-country event only, was held at Welch Village, near Red Wing, Minn., June 13-14. After a four-week break, the series kicked into high gear, starting at Mammoth Mtn., Calif., a legendary site in mountain bike racing that entered its 12th consecutive year of hosting top national and international competitions. Following Mammoth was Deer Valley, Utah, site of the 1997 Finals, and then round six at Breckenridge.
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