SUGAR MOUNTAIN — Many of the nation’s top mountain bike racers converged on Avery County, as Sugar Mountain Resort hosted the Downhill Southeast’s Premier Gravity Race Series on Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 8 and 9.

Riders careened down the mountainside as they glided their bikes over the terrain to outrace each other to claim victory as the fastest down the mountain. Sugar Mountain is the race series’ most recent stop as bikers collected points at Mindrock Bike Park and Snowshoe Mountain in July and early August.

On Saturday, the Professional Men’s category put on a show as mountain bike athletes in the top of their field competed in one of the event’s toughest divisions. Dakota Norton finished first with a time of 3:21.67. Seth Hanson finished second at 3:35.91 and Chris Grice came in third with a time of 3:36.36.

The Professional Women’s category One stood out as well. Frida Roenning came in first place with a time of 4:08.97. Mazie Hayden finished second with a time of 4:25.90, and Susan Curtin placed third with a time of 5:05.85.

The Junior Men’s category, ages 18 or younger, finished with lightning fast times, with finishers placing seconds apart. Jack Dichiara finished first with a time of 3:42.75. Matthew Spong came in second at 3:49.01, and Corey Jackson finished third with a time of 3:49.72.

Men’s Category One, ages 40 and older, faced stiff competition as well. Jason Sherill finished first with a time of 4:06.04. Chuck Pitts came in second at 4:09.23, and Shawn Metcalf placed third with a time of 4:16.39.

The winners in the last category of the day, Men’s Age Group 19 to 39, came in shy of the four-minute mark. Jared Russell finished first with a time of 3:49.98. TJ Henson came in second at 3:51.93, and Gus Michaels finished third with a time of 3:53.52.

On Sunday, a bevy of bikers took to the slope’s terrain once again to compete for the title as the fastest downhill. In the Professional Men’s category, Norton finished first with a blazing fast time of 3:14.89. Grice came in second at 3:25.07, and Isak Leivsson finished third with a time of 3:26.34.

The Professional Women’s category did not slow down, either. Roenning came in first place with a time of 3:55.66. Caroline Washam finished second with a time of 4:11.93, and Hayden placed third with a time of 4:14.40.

In Men’s Category one, age 18 and younger, Dichiara finished first with a time of 3:39.11. Jackson came in second at 3:46.01, and Colin Mulally finished third with a time of 3:47.06.

In Men’s Category, ages 40 and older, Metcalf finished first with a time of 3:59.10. Sherill came in second at 4:00.12, and Traig Henson finished third with a time of 4:06.46.

In Men’s Category, ages 19 to 39, Corey Ross finished first with a time of 3:44.42. Gus Michaels came in second at 3:47.17, and Russell finished third with a time of 3:49.96.

In Men’s Category Two, ages 50 and older, Mark Bell finished first with a time of 5:13.42. Mark Mehuron came in second at 5:21.11, and Rob Issem finished third with a time of 5:33.83.

In Men’s Category Two, ages 40 and older, Stephen Gray finished first with a time of 4:57.49. Travis Jones came in second at 5:05.64, and Asa Bleier finished third with a time of 5:21.54.

In Men’s Category Two, ages 19 to 39, Kolson Ford finished first with a time of 4:48.28. Zachary Quast came in second at 5:01.89, and Nathan Smith finished third with a time of 5:02.67.

In Men’s Category Two, ages 15 to 18, Logan Dowell finished first with a time of 4:43.33. Caleb Harrell came in second at 4:51.82, and Charles Buzzetta finished third with a time of 4:54.46.

In Men’s Category Two, ages 14 and younger, Louis Porter finished first with a time of 5:04.84. Ethan Chryst came in second at 5:09.67, and Collier Kee finished third with a time of 5:10.37.

In the Women’s Category Two, Lilly Driver finished first with a time of 5:34.80. Sophie Allen came in second at 5:37.89, and Caitlyn Farmer finished third with a time of 5:40.20.

For the Single Crown Open category, Max Beaupre finished first with a time of 4:33.34. Jordan Bouldin came in second at 4:36.87, and Ty Teasdale finished third with a time of 4:47.74.

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