by Steve Bradley
Over the weekend of August 29 – 30 the local Stateline Riders Motorcycle Club hosted a New England Trail Riders Association motorcycle competition. Competitors came from all over New England and eastern New York in motor homes, travel trailers and toy haulers. The event was held on the Bugbee farm on Clay Hill Road at what has to be one of the most beautiful, scenic vistas in all of the Town of Hoosick. With the event grounds humming with activity for two days, spectators and competitors alike were running down to the village day and evenings for supplies. This is family sport, and that was evident everywhere, with moms and dads working side by side with their children to get the bikes set up just right. For some families, kids would encourage their parents, then parents would encourage their kids during their race.
More than 350 riders competed over the weekend. Entry fees ranged from $30 to $45. Some came for Saturday, some came Sunday, some stayed for both days. Because local club members were working the event, the number of local riders was not as high as at away events.
Saturday was a day for riders under 18, with the youngest being the Peewees, riders 5 to 12 years of age. Saturday was a miserable rainy day for the short track competitions.
Sunday, big track day, was absolutely gorgeous, with sunny skies and perfect temperatures. The turnout of spectators was quite impressive Sunday, possibly up to 300. The big course was 6.6 miles in length and took anywhere from 20 to 30 minutes to navigate, depending on the individual rider’s ability. The track went through the woods and up and down hills, with all sorts of difficult terrain to negotiate. The heavy Saturday rain had made the course all the more challenging. Sunday classes ranged from Mini Girls up to Expert. Riders for both days ranged from 5 to 65 years of age.
On Saturday night, there was live music for everyone to enjoy.
New England Trail Rider Association events are held most weekends of the warmer months all over New England. Many riders do the entire series. Efforts are made whenever possible not to hold events in the same location on two consecutive years in order to give the course a chance to heal. Minimum cost of entry into the sport – purchasing a new bike, helmet, riding suit and necessary add-ons – would run around $7,000.
The Stateline Riders Motorcycle Club is a chapter of the New England Trail Riders Association. The local club, covering northern Rensselaer and eastern Bennington counties, has about 100 members. The Stateline Riders meet every Thursday evening at Guiseppe’s Restaurant on Route 7, with average attendance for each meeting between 60 and 70 members, many of them younger riders. The club is family oriented, with emphasis on riding responsibly. The Club President is John McIntyre. He can be reached at 235-5917.