Racing in New England year round is a reality! Fat bike racing last winter got a bit wiped out thanks to copious amounts of snow and a stretch of 40+ days below freezing keeping that snow light and fluffy and less than ideal for fat bikes (great for skiing though!)
This year is the other side of that coin; warmer temps, mixed precip, freeze/thaw cycles. Bad news for skiers but great news for fat biking!
Our first big Nor’Easter decided to stay south so I figured I would check out the first race in the Fatty Walrus series put on by our friends at Riverside Racing. I had heard good things about the course at Plug Pond and its a pretty easy drive down to Haverhill for me. It was a pretty good turn out, probably about 30 racers in the ‘Polar Bear’ division. Probably only about an inch or two of snow coverage in the park and the course was hard pack and only icy in a few spots. Nice and fast and drifty.
These shorter higher intensity races aren’t my strength but I like them for training. I can’t convince myself to work as hard as I can on a training ride as I can in a race.
not sure about you but I can’t spend 88% of my ride at 80+% max unless I’m chasing someone
I slotted in about mid pack or so after the initial haul along the pond. The course actually had a decent amount of climbing, almost 1000ft for the 10mi race with some really fun descents mixed in. Everything was completely rideable, a few turns were a bit sketchy and I would have loved studs in those moments but as long as you saw them coming you could run an outrigger and tokyo drift your way through. Which is probably more fun than safely riding through with studs anyway. A few of the descents were fast and a tad scary with the slick hard pack / ice conditions but I managed to stay upright all day.
I would highly recommend checking the rest of this series out. I believe the next one is Feb 13th, Register Here.