As each new race season begins, the community faces a series of new and unique changes. We see new bikes, new kit, new trails, and even some new faces. Nonetheless, a few things always remain the same. The anticipation in the air, the laughs and smiles, and the weather at Port Angeles. The days started off only cloudy, maybe some wind so everyone began to feel a slight bit of hope. Just as we thought the dreaded dark clouds wouldn't arrive, Port Angeles didn't fail to surprise us. By the Cat 1 and Pro practice on each day, Dry Hill itself was no longer dry. The rain came down, the roots became slippery, and the dirt turned to mud, or as some riders refer to it, "peanut butter", and yet, no matter what weather Port Angeles delivered, nothing could kill the excitement of the season opener.
In the Northwest Cup, the sense of community is an understatement. While you may not know everyone’s name or what bike they are on, you recognize them and can relate to them because, for at least eight weekends out of the year, you all have the same goal, race and win. On February 27, 2018, we lost a glowing member of our community. Declan Ervin, as many have said, was a fearless, thrill-seeking, and brilliant boy that stole everyone’s hearts the second he met them. We cherish the moments we had and honor his memory this season with the #IRIDEFORDECLAN. In order to commemorate Declan this past weekend, the event organizers, Casey Northern and Scott Tucker, gave Declan his race run and as he crossed the finish line in our thoughts, there was a moment of silence. Declan won and in that the crowd had never cheered louder. According to Junior Women rider Bryce Bassett, When the moment of silence for Declan was happening, it was very surreal. There was a strong connection in the mountain bike community, we were all being brought together for a moment of appreciation for an amazing soul. I could feel the energy change in everyone around me. Honestly the feeling I got most out of it, was appreciation. When we were told to cheer for him crossing the line, I could tell everyone was cheering as loud as they could. I got chills. I cannot express words of how thankful I am to have been there to experience such a beautiful moment."To remember Declan throughout the season, event organizers printed #IrideforDeclan on all race plates this season.Finishing her race run Shannon Sutherland (Left) ended with a time of 05:36.47, putting her in sixth place. While Ethan Shandro (Right) finished with a remarkable time of 02:34.76. Not only did he place first in Junior Expert, he landed himself in 10th in the Pro Men category.
For more details and results from this weekend, you can continue reading or click this link
• Round 1 of the NW Cup
• Round 2 of the Pro-GRT
• April 13, 2018 – April 14, 2018
• Dry Hill, Port Angeles, Washington
• 507 riders
• Pro, Junior Ex, and Cat 1 rode Queen Diamond to Recluse then Chunder Dome to finish
• Cat 2 rode White Knuckle to Moto Guzzi then Cakewalk to finish
• Cat 3 rode White Knuckle to Double Bypass then lower White Knuckle to finish
Written by Olivia Smith. Photos taken by Olivia Smith (osmithracing).
For all other photos from the race click here