Did you do two trail works this year? Did you write your letter of intent? Did you pay the master of ceremonies $20? Did you bring a six-pack of good beer? Is your game tight?
If you answered yes to all of the above questions then you could have taken part in the 18th year of the Six-Pack invitational. Harrisonburg, my old stomping grounds, has a rich and vibrant cycling community with events older than many of the riders that take part in them. One such event is the Six-Pack Invitational, where riders put it all on the line to be crowned the Invitational Winner.
This grassroots downhill race, while a quest for glory, is also how much of the surrounding trail work gets done. And with traditions such as a letter of intent declaring your participation, your ride ante of a six-pack of beer, and the mandatory swig of Jaeger for all top 10 riders, you got yourself a rowdy good time.
This year was no different, with Thursday night’s party revealing the starting list as names were pulled out of the hat. Sandy forced the committee to get creative, but smart thinking prevailed and it was decided that Boone’s Run would be the downhill of choice.
Saturday came quickly and riders pedaled up the downhill, scoping lines, and discussing which were best.
30 SECONDS! 15 SECONDS! 5, 4, 3, 2, 1! The first rider is off, and ripping down the trail. Nervous anticipation sets in as you wait your turn.
Results are kept secret until after the UNIs, and then announced at the party that night. UNIs you ask? Just the Universal Fixed Gear Championships, a 2-3 lap race on fixed gear mountain bikes after a spirited beer chug and Lemond start. Check the video below of 2011’s UNI race!
That night saw Collin Vento, local Harrisonburg ripper, crowned as the 2012 Invitational Winner, and Sue Haywood taking the ladies title. Jaeger was had, many many many beers were drunk, pump track laps were ridden, more beers were drunk, and all in all a great time was had. Events like this keep cycling fun and lighthearted. Think you have what it takes to be the 2013 Invitational Winner? Just get those trail works in and don’t forget your six-pack…