On Saturday, Sept 20, 2014 Fernie hosted it's annual Dirt Diggler DH Race.
In its 9th year this event was born by local rider Derek Bird who is also the mastermind behind the trail itself.
Accessed by shuttle, Dirt Diggler is 6.5km, over 3,500 vertical feet and complete with steep chutes, coal dust and great airtime. On a casual day with friends the ride down is enjoyed for over an hour but in race mode, the fastest riders are finished in 10 minutes.
The day's race was full on and entertaining this year. Youngest rider at 14 was Joshua Fultz-Veinotte and this year the event featured it's oldest rider at age 53, Darcy Lewis! Darcy's objective was just to finish, which he did, and although he came in last he got a lot of cred as he just recently took up downhill riding; an amazing feat which received the loudest cheer of the day from the crowd.
The top four males had the fastest times ever recorded with Ross Roseingrave taking first place at 10:02. Fastest female Lucie Richer tackled the course in 13:04.
A DH race isn't without its injuries. One of the four female riders, Lindsay Kelley, somehow finished the race with a dislocated shoulder and broken collarbone that she got from a fall on course. She was taken to the hospital at the bottom. Then one guy finished with a broken ankle. At least there was FBC beer at the finish line!
Thanks to the volunteers and sponsors!
Sponsors: Fernie MTB Club, Straight Line, Ski Base, Fernie Brewing Company
Images: Paul Adam, Tom Dunphy, Amanda Dreger, Scott Fieldhouse, Jikke Gyorki
Jikke Gyorki, Tourism Fernie