Engineer, machinists create unique trophy for Space Race
When the NRAO Space Race Rumpus became an official USA Cycling Club sanctioned event, one thing was clear ﾖﾠthere must be a one-of-a-kind trophy.
ﾓAn engineer [Mike Stennes] designed it in his free time,ﾔ public education specialist Sarah Scoles said. ﾓ[It has] the GBT in the background and somebody carrying a bike over an obstacle course. We were deciding whether to ship it out to have it done and the guys in the machine shop said it looked interesting, and they wanted to participate. So, theyﾒre making all of them.ﾔ
Stennes said he researched Cyclocross events and found that several races had a specific theme. With this in mind, he said he wanted to create a trophy that was specific to the NRAO event.
He chose the iconic GBT as the backdrop and included a cyclist carrying his bicycle in the foreground.
The men of the machine shop, who are notorious for their ability to make anything, entered the design into their system and cut the trophies with a milling machine.
With the trophies designed, the NRAO is completing plans for the race which will take place June 15-17.
ﾓWe have been working on cleaning up all the site trails,ﾔ Scoles said. ﾓSomewhere between 15 and 20 miles of trails all around the site that go by weird historical things, like old military vehicles that are just sitting out in the middle of the woods. Thereﾒs a trail that comes out where the ski lift used to be and thereﾒs this old gasoline tanker thatﾒs camouflaged, sitting at the top of the hill.ﾔ
The Cyclocross track has been finished and a site map of the obstacle course is available online. Scoles said the Cyclocross event will be the highlight of the weekend, with a 1.3 mile course laid out around the 140 telescope.
ﾓ[The obstacles] have to fit the regulations of Cyclocross, but we built them,ﾔ she said. ﾓTheyﾒre mostly land features like little hills. Sometimes you have to get off your bike and carry it, so we adjusted the natural terrain so they can do that. The course was designed so that the racers can be seen by spectators the entire time.ﾔ
The Cyclocross is divided into five categories: kids race, 15 minutes on a short course; women beginners, 30 minutes; men beginners, 30 minutes; women elite, one hour; and men elite, one hour.
Along with the main races, there are several trail rides planned for each day, as well as clinics for those looking to improve their cycling skills and how to find the right bike for individual abilities.
Each night will include live entertainment, food and toddler rides.
ﾓWeﾒre having a toddler track in the parking lot,ﾔ Scoles said. ﾓKids are going to ride tricycles in costumes.ﾔ
Live entertainment includes local band Stony Bottom Bluegrass Boys, The Steel Wheels and the Elm Street Alleycats from Elkins.
Vendors include Dirt Bean Ohana, Joeyﾒs Bike Shop, The Flour Girls Bakery and the Pocahontas County Artisans Cooperative.
All proceeds from the event will benefit the Northern Pocahontas Wellness Center.
To view a schedule of events and to see the map of the Cyclocross race, visit www.gb.nrao.edu/rumpus/