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Rider of the Month - September 2016
Congratulations to Jim McWhorter for being this September's Rider of the Month. Jim has been involved with the club for a long time, and takes on the rolls and various jobs for the SSFTA as needed, the latest being a ride leader for the Monday night rides. Kudos to you, Jim!
 
 
Name: Jim McWhorter
How did you become interested in mountain biking? 
I became interested in mountain bikes as a training tool when I raced motocross and Flattrack motorcycles. I eventually decided that I was getting to old for broken collarbones, knees and all the other injuries associated with motorcycles. So I decided to get into something much safer and bought the very first dual suspension Cannondale and went Downhill racing. It was much safer with all that 2.5 inches of suspension travel.
At what age did you begin mountain biking?
28
What was your first mountain bike?
My very first bike was a Bridgestone MB3. Full ridged chromolly frame with Biopace chain rings.
When did you start riding with the Southern Sierra Fat Tire Association?
I was looking for a group to ride with and saw a blurb in the newspaper about a group called the Mountain Weenies. I wasn't sure what kind of people would be in a group called the mountain weenies. About a year later I heard about a group called the Southern Sierra Fat Tire Association and thought that sounded like a club I would be interested in and went to a club meeting. Turns out they were the same group.
What do you enjoy most about the club?
The thing I really enjoy about the club is the comradery between all the riders. All the friends I have met through the years.
What bike are you currently riding?
I ride a 2002 Turner 5 spot. It has been an awesome bike. It a little outdated now, being a 26er and having three chainrings up front and only 9 in the back. The frame broke a couple years ago but I had it welded up with some gussets and it as good as new.
What is your favorite trail (local and/or out of town)?
My favorite trail used to be the Cannell trail, but after riding the McKensie trail in Oregon I would say that's my favorite now. Beautiful ferns,old growth fir trees and 4-5 awesome waterfalls.
Do you have any upcoming races or events planned? What are your goals or plans for the upcoming year?
I really want to get back up to Oregon and ride , and also Moab.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
I really want to thank everyone involved in the forward momentum of the SSFTA. The officers of the club, dedicated ride leaders, volunteers. It seems like a thankless job sometimes, but the impact it has on the biking community is unmeasurable. 
   

Rider of the Month - August 2016
Congrats to Drew Wilson for being nomminated for our Rider of the Month. While this is a MTB site, I've gotta give Drew props for having just completed an Ironman in Colorado over the summer. You the man!
 
Name: Andrew Wilson
How did you become interested in mountain biking? 
A friend of mine in Australia was getting back into the sport. I had surfed my whole life and was looking for something different. I was already doing triathlons, and thought mountain biking would be a good crossover training session. I fell in with a good club in Australia, made some good friends, and just kind of kept pedaling.
At what age did you begin mountain biking?
27
 
 
What was your first mountain bike?
I had bikes growing up as a kid but they were a means of transport between school, home and the beach. The first real mountain bike that I owned was a Trek 6700 hardtail. Had a lot of fun on that bike, learning to ride trail.
When did you start riding with the Southern Sierra Fat Tire Association?
I moved to Bakersfield in September 2011. I was hooked up with James Pass through our wives, and he showed me around the trails, and introduced me to other riders. I've pretty much been a member ever since.
What do you enjoy most about the club?
All the social things that we do like group rides, the Pie Ride, Spring BBQ. Times when we bring our families together and eat food.
What bike are you currently riding?
I'll keep it short. I like to ride different styles depending on what I'm training for at the time. I have a road bike, a TT bike, a pub bike, a 26" hardtail single speed, a full suspension 29er, and I'm currently building up a new 29er race whip. I try to get every bike off the wall at least once every two weeks.
What is your favorite trail (local and/or out of town)?
Can't go past Portuguese and Cannel.
Do you have any upcoming races or events planned? What are your goals or plans for the upcoming year?
I just got done with Ironman Colorado last month. I was doing a lot of riding for that so I'm taking a little break. I'll still ride socially with the club, but I think I'm going to focus on some 50 and 100 mile running races. I'll still do Foothills, Rio Bravo, Keysville and I may have a crack at the Cobbler.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
Thanks to all the members, past and present who have welcomed myself and my family into the SSFTA cub here. I know Bakersfield wouldn't be the same with you guys.
   

Rider of the Month - July 2016
We'd like to congratulate Kevin Talley for being awarded our Rider of the Month; Kevin has been a fixture in the cycling community in Kern County for several years, having been a mechanic for Bike Bakersfield, then on the road crew driving the NiteRider van at events across the country, before coming back to Bakersfield where he can now be found working at Finish Line Bikes on Stockdale Hwy.
 
 
Name: Kevin Talley
How did you become interested in mountain biking? 
I first started mountain biking because I was tired of all the close calls I was having while road riding. Tried riding in the dirt once and haven't looked back!
At what age did you begin mountain biking?
22
What was your first mountain bike?
Late 80s/early 90s Specialized Rockhopper I built at Bike Bakersfield out of throw away parts!
When did you start riding with the Southern Sierra Fat Tire Association?
2013
What do you enjoy most about the club?
I really enjoy the diversity of the club. I like that we all come from different backgrounds and everyone gets along because of our common love for mountain biking!
What bike are you currently riding?
2015 Santa Cruz Bronson
What is your favorite trail (local and/or out of town)?
Locally I love our foothills. I have been all over the country to ride bikes and its hard to beat our local trails.
Out of town I have to say my favorite trail I have ridden would have to be Pinecrest Peak Trail in Pinecrest, CA. If you want an amazing day in the saddle that finishes at an amazing lake I would highly suggest looking into it!
Do you have any upcoming races or events planned? What are your goals or plans for the upcoming year?
Nothing planned I just want to do rad things with my friends while we pedal around!
Is there anything else you would like to share?
STAY STOKED MY FRIENDS!
 
   

Rider of the Month - June 2016
Congratulations to Dr. Kevin Schmidt for being awarded our Rider of the Month for June.
 
Name: Kevin "Doc" Schmidt
How did you become interested in mountain biking? 
Came from a background of professional motocross, road, and cross country motorcycle racing. As land closures limited where to ride, I got my two wheeled/off road fix by taking up mountain biking and getting to ride the same trails that I got kicked out of for riding my motorcycle on! And then there are a whole lot of other areas, that I never had access to, that I have now! Then health issues, and a short familial life span, finally made me take up mountain biking full time! Been loving it ever since and other than work it dominates my life.
At what age did you begin mountain biking?
41
What was your first mountain bike?
A Cannondale, 1993 Delta V 1000. One of the first full suspension mountain bikes, Cannondale made. Have bought three more Cannondales since then.
When did you start riding with the Southern Sierra Fat Tire Association?
2009. Vice president of SSFTA 2014.
What do you enjoy most about the club?
Promoting the sport of mountain biking! A great sport you can ride till the end of your life...and I plan to. Fun watching the explosion of the sport in the last few years.
What bike are you currently riding?
Cannondale Scalpel Carbon 29 (XC) and Cannondale Trigger Carbon 29 (Enduro).
What is your favorite trail (local and/or out of town)?
Cactus-Sleepy Hollow-Serrano Cow-Live Oak Trails (linked together) in Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park in Orange County. Beach Cruiser at Mammoth is a close second. But then being outdoors, riding, where can you go wrong?
Do you have any upcoming races or events planned? What are your goals or plans for the upcoming year?
Just finished helping the Tehachapi Mountain Trails Association put on the first annual BrewFondo, mountain bike Gran Fondo and Beer Festival! Money will go to purchasing a trail making machine for the Lehigh Trails to eventually turn into a 10,000 acre, 365 day a year, mountain bike park with lifts!
Working on establishing a National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) middle and high school teams for mountain bike racing as a regional member of the SoCal League in Bakersfield, grades 6-12, open to boys and girls.
And of course, always promoting mountain biking!
Is there anything else you would like to share?
A board certified emergency physician by profession and CEO of several companies.
 
   

Rider of the Month - May 2016
Congratulations to Joshua Neal for being awarded our Rider of the Month! Josh can often be found riding with our Sunday riders.
 
Name: Joshua Neal
How did you become interested in mountain biking? 
By accident
At what age did you begin mountain biking?
3 years
What was your first mountain bike?
Nishiki 29er
When did you start riding with the Southern Sierra Fat Tire Association?
About a year ago a member for 5 months
What do you enjoy most about the club?
Away to hangout and ride
What bike are you currently riding?
Specialized camber
What is your favorite trail (local and/or out of town)?
Kern River trail
Do you have any upcoming races or events planned? What are your goals or plans for the upcoming year?
Would like to ride more trails around kern county mountains and possibly out of town
 
   

Rider of the Month - April 2016

Congratulations to Chris Wymore and his family for being awarded Riders of the Month for May! The Wymore's can often be seen whiping around the foothills.

 

 

 

 

   

Rider of the Month - March 2016
Congratulations to Kristabel for being selected as our March 2016 Rider of the Month!
 
 
Name: Kristabel Garcia-Diaz
 
How did you become interested in mountain biking? 
Ernest and I were started off as road cyclists (I know right?!) We would do this loop that included Rattlesnake on the weekends. We would see people riding their mountain bikes on the trails along side the path. They looked like they were having way more fun than us. It took me a year or two but I finally went to Action Sports and Leon Welch sold me my Cannondale, Ernest got his bike about a day later. I like to take credit for introducing mountain biking to the Garcia-Diaz household.
 
At what age did you begin mountain biking?
25? Not that long ago 😉
 
What was your first mountain bike?
My first mountain bike was a Cannondale SL5. I only recently hung her up. But I have grand plans of making her a single speed.
 
When did you start riding with the Southern Sierra Fat Tire Association?
I think about four or five years ago. I immediately fell in love with the group.
 
What do you enjoy most about the club?
Both off and on the bike, the SSFTA has some of the greatest people on the planet in it. I have made so many friends and have been to so many amazing places thanks to the SSFTA. I can't think of a better group to belong to.
 
What bike are you currently riding?
I am currently the proud owner of my dream bike, a Specialized Epic. I talked and talked people's ear off before finally getting it.
 
What is your favorite trail (local and/or out of town)?
My favorite local trail is the Keyesville Loop. It has a little bit a everything. I also like Kern River Trail.
 
Do you have any upcoming races or events planned? What are your goals or plans for the upcoming year?
This is a big year for me in terms of events, I am looking forward to both the Foothill Classic and Keyesville Stage Race. I have recently ventured into triathlons and and have a few lined up including a Half Ironman!
 
Is there anything else you would like to share?
I really want to reiterate how much I love this club. I think the world of its members. No where can a person find such a fun, generous and encouraging group of people. Thank you for letting me tag along and be part of something amazing.
   

Riders of the Month - February 2016

 

Our Riders of the Month are Augie and Rossy Robles. Let's learn a little more about them:

 

Q. How did you become interested in mountain biking?

Augie wanted to get our 3 boys active in a sport they could all do together.

 

Q. At what age did you begin mountain biking?

Augie 15, Rosie 35

 

Q. What was your first mountain bike?

Augie: Montgomery Ward $110 special. Rosie: youngest sons hand me down; EBay bought Specialized Epic.

 

Q. When did you start riding with the Southern Sierra Fat Tire Association?

Augie: 2009 when the oil crunch made the oilfield slow. Rosie, off and on 1 year later.

 

Q. What do you enjoy the most about the club?

Everyone is humble, happy, most drink beer and everyone goes to ride together, like a bunch of kids but with knarly bikes!

 

Q. What bike are you currently riding?

Rosie & Augie ride matching Walmart bikes.


Q. What is your favorite trial (local and/or out of town)?

Mammoth trails, especially the one we are not supposed to climb, the one that takes you straight to the top.

 

Q. Do you have any upcoming races or events planned? What are your goals or plans for the upcoming year?

Cobbler 100 miler (EDITORS NOTE: both Rossy and Augie recently completed the Rock Cobbler 3.0 in just over 7 hours!), Foothill Classic, Keysville Classic and Sea Otter.

 

Q. Is there anything else you'd like to share?

When sons had to focus on work and school, they could not ride much anymore so Augie coaxed Rosie to ride which was a battle every time. With other SSFTA girl riders like Fernandos ex girlfriend Marcela and Lisa Wade encouraging her, Rosie began to ride more and like the sport. Slowly the boys stopped riding altogether but Rosie picked it up and got better every year. Now she rides with Augie and other SSFTA riders on long rides everywhere! 
Best marriage tip: get wore out together on MTB bike rides and u don't have time to fight, better yet, you both agree on spending money on bike stuff!
 
   

Helmets are required on all rides because mountain biking can be a dangerous activity, even while just hangin’ around before or after a ride!

The SSFTA is a fun social group and our invitation to ride is not an assumption of any liability whatsoever on the Club’s, member’s, sponsor’s, or affiliate’s part. The terrain and group-ride dynamics can be extremely variable and can possibly exceed any rider’s ability at any time. The SSFTA is not responsible for accidents or ignorance on yours or anyone’s part.

Your decision to show up and ride with SSFTA or any of its members, affiliates, sponsors, et al., expressly waives your right to blame anyone else for your or others poor judgment, mishaps, equipment failures, dumb luck, or any other “lame-blame-game” or excuse you or others may harbor or concoct.

Speaking of equipment failures, if yours does, someone else might be able to fix it but you should be prepared to deal with it without counting on others. Wear proper clothing and by all means come prepared to hydrate and nourish yourself before and during the event. You should also consult with a physician before attempting any exercise (and you should consult with a psychiatrist if you have any other issues). Always carry clear identification and insurance cards.

“Remember, in man vs oak tree the oak tree wins” C.K.

 

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