Matt at the U.S. Nationals

Steve Fracy reports :-

“On June 15/16 and June 22/23, Matt and I made the long trip out to the Eastern US States of NY and VT where Matt competed in the first 4 Rounds of the US National Trials Championships for 2013 in the High School Class.
At only 17, this was Matt’s very first attempt at riding this Championship! It was defenitely a huge eye opener for him, with the level of riding very high, and the professinalism of the events even greater. This was a huge undertaking for us, considering how far away geographically we were from the events.

Steve and Matt Fracy

Steve and Matt Fracy

The scale of all of this was apparent when we finally arrived in Cayuta Ny on Friday morning having flown in to Syracuse NY the night before. Luckily our bikes, and camp were all ready there, and setup by our travel companion for the next week, Bill Thompson from Wa state. At the young age of 77, Bill drove by himself from Wa all the way to NY in 4days!
The trials site featured private land, a huge farmers field to park the insane amount of massive RV’s and bike haulers that littered the infield. A very professional looking pits with huge setups by all the big trials importers in the US. It was very impressive to say the least. We were fortunate enough to get a full tour of the Sherco pits and there setup, team bus, and team parts trailer by my old friend, 7 Time US Champ Ryan Young who is the Sherco importer.
The rest of Friday was spent checking on bike setup which was minimal, and a small amount of practise. The area had seen tons of rain leading up to the event, and, all of the loop trails and sections were extremely muddy. The exception to this was the massive shale waterfalls and creeks that are unique to this area.
As Saturday rolled around it was apparent to me that Matt was a little nervous! In US Nationals, each rider is allowed to have a “Minder” follow them around the event, who must also pay entrance fee, and is subject to all the same criteria as the rider, ie tech inspection and appropiate gear. The minder must wear a special red bib that helps identify him to the checkers. The other HUGE adjustment for Matt was the inclusion of a time limit on every section! Each rider only has 1min 30sec to complete a section. This time started when the front axle of your bike enters the section. Failure to complete in that time results in a 5! In fact, on Day 2 in NY Matt was caught timing out on the hardest section of the day, when in fact he was the ONLY one attempting it in his class! We found out at that point that unlike the FIM, the rider/minders are responsible for keeping track of their own time. Needless to say we purchased a stop watch after that!
Matt in Action

Matt in Action

When it was all said and done in NY Matt had ridden really well, only really one mistake each day, which took him from a win, down to 3rd place both days! It was a really hard fought battle betwwen the top three kids all weekend. The winner from CA, and 2nd place from FLA, it was really a large mix of areas the riders were from.

We spent the early part of the next week, cleaning bikes, clothes, and travelling the 6hrs east to the next two rounds in Highgate VT. We were only 7miles from the Canadian border, and about 40 miles from Montreal!
The pits setup was similar as the event was held on private land owned by a farmer in the area! Except that they had received 11 inches of rain in the two days prior to us arriving. Although it was sunny all week, a tractor had to be used to tow all of the big rigs IN so they could park.
The terrain here was so much like riding at the VMC and we were warned that the rocks became impossible to ride when wet……I personally was hoping for rain! 🙂 Matt got some really good practise in here leading up to the trial and got more comfortable with his competitors and making some good friends along the way. Lots of people asking us where we were from, not knowing where it was, and then being in shock when we showed them on a map!!
When Saturday and Sunday came around, my hopes had come true, except for the fact that I don’t really enjoy riding in the rain when its 90F out!! Matt again rode pretty well both days and was in the hunt to win with loop scores going back and forth between the top 4kids. It was intense to say the least!
In the end Matt ended up 3rd again both days in Vermont. I was proud of him even though I know he was disappointed in not winning! The second day was capped off with a huge rain/thunder storm that started during the awards and never stopped, flooding the field again and everyone there needing to be pulled out by the farmers tractor. It took us about 3hrs to load up and the get out of there!
All in all it was an amazing experience for Matt and he did a great job of representing his sponsors, his country, his hometown, and, all of you who were so gracious in your dontations and support! We literally could not have done it without you and on behalf of Matt, I want to thank everyone.
Matt will be riding next in two weeks in Ioco BC and the Canadian Nationals, and then at the end of August the last two US Nationals for him in Duluth MN. We will keep all of you posted on his results.”
Sincerely, Steve Fracy