Two people that really made this event happen, gave me 100% support even through all my throw fits during that last week are Carolynn and Christopher. I told them that this would be the last time they had to endure it and I meant it.
Where did the Bone Bender come from anyways?
I started working the Bone Bender about 5 years ago. I was planning an Xterra Triathlon with my friend/teammate Tige Lamb up at Smithville Lake. Off-Road Triathlons are my favorite event and we did not have one in this area, plus I thought Smithville would be the ideal location for an Xterra. I decided to put the event on hold mainly because I could not get the support for water patrol for the swim portion. The liability was just to great and I did not want to take the risk at the time. Fast forward a few months and I come to find out that ERTA (Earth Riders Trail Association) needs some help raising funds to pay off some equipment. I offer an event that I was working on, the Bone Bender 3/6 hour MTB Odyssey up as a way to raise funds for local trails. What better way to raise money and give back to the sport than to put on a kick ass mountain bike race. We put together a good team of volunteers that first two years and produced two quality events up at Smithville. I thought it was a good start to an event that the local cycling community could call their own and use to raise funds for ERTA.
Why did you move the Bone Bender?
As I start to work on the 3rd Annual BB36 I get this letter from the President of ERTA that states "ERTA will not be involved in the Bone Bender race in 2011". Basically, Thanks for your support, but we do not need you anymore. I must tell you that this really did hurt my feelings as I basically gave this event to them to use as a fundraiser. Carolynn and I took on all the liability with ERTA not being responsible for anything but cashing the check. But like I always tell my son Christopher, "No One Owes You a Damn Thing". I thought about about not holding the BB36 anymore, but still felt that this event could be a "community" event and help and benefit everyone. Because that Smithville Trail Crew and ERTA did not want the BB36 anymore I had to find another location and benefiting organization. As my Father Al always said "One person does not stop the show" referring to the countless times when someone would not work or complete a job thinking that he would just quit or back down.
Can we find a new home for Bone Bender?
I talk to my good friend Gerard and we discuss the possibility of moving the Bone Bender to Clinton Lake. He agrees that it is a great idea and we move forward with getting permission (no small task) and permits. A ton of work goes into the next two years to make and grow the Bone Bender into a regional event that attracts hundreds of riders.
Where to now?
As of now I am unsure of future of the Bone Bender 3/6 Hour MTB Odyssey. I guess it all depends on if the "Community" still wants this event and will they continue to support it. For me, I am taking a break from promoting. Time to focus on my family and selflessly myself.