The old Michigan axiom of, "If you don't like the weather, wait five minutes" rings truer than ever in mid-December, and racers are watching the skies in hopes of a few inches of snow ahead of the first race of the Short's Brewing Fat Bike Series. After last year's deep and persistent pounding, the lack of snow is almost eery as Christmas sneaks up on Northern Michigan.
The plan is to have to largely exclusive courses prepared, each one geared toward different weather. If there's snow, expect to see a reverse of the Fat Camp! course from last March, with some newly groomed terrain near the back of the Timber Ridge property to make its debut. If there's more dirt than snow, the course will take advantage of more technical trails, some singletrack, and more rolling hills that run along the southeast part of Timber Ridge.
In either case, the 2 mile course is going to be a challenge, but a challenge at high-speed. One of the main goals for 2014-2015 is to create 4 unique courses, with all of them being largely open, passable and fast. These are the fastest circuits possible, and offer a chance for the powerhouses to keep pace with the bike handling wizards.
Einstein Racing will be representing with some ambitions, with 2014 champion Jason Lowetz entering with the number 1 plate and a lot of expectations. He'll be supported by Ryan Kennedy, Chris Kushman, Ryan Kushman, Rob Goepfrich and a slew of others. Beth Collins leads the way for the women's squad, and stands a great chance of retaining her Master's title from last season.