The inaugural Ninkrossi Race in Washougal, WA., has come and gone and what it day it was. An awesome new course, run over bumps, meadows, bits of singletrack, leafy and rocky muddy bits, coupled with fantastic weather and serenaded by motocross bikes howling, yielded a good time for all. For our little Wolfpack, the day ended with some good results, most notably Brianna Walle’s single handed wire-to-wire dismantling of the B’s field to take her first victory since upgrading. Lots of other top tens and good showings by Steph Croy, MK47, Erin Willig, The Ace, Barker, and Ryan Smith as well. And while a good day overall, and results being what they may, it was a day of one sole headline. That being the headline the return of our own dear Kmac – Kristin McCarthy (now Culpepper!) more than a year after a wreck that redefined her life, as well as all of ours. This time last year our dear gal was fresh off of wearing a seatbelt in a wheelchair, after a traumatic brain injury suffered in a wreck at PIR in June of 09. What’s followed since that terrible day has been a lot of mental and physical rehabilitation, arduous months spent in medical facilities, ups and downs, and the step by step slow rebuilding of a normal life. Back on her feet, back at work, and newly married, today marked a pinnacle of sorts in what has been nothing short of a miraculous comeback – today, Kristin donned a wolf suit, pinned on a number, and toed a start line. October 16th, 2010, you’re hereby owned.
Ace, Idiot, Phoenix
We wouldn’t have made it through that time without the amazing support of our community – you, the OBRAlites – and today if you were there, we all shared this moment as one big team. Kristin finished 17th out of 17 women in the B’s, but between everyone there, from the top A racers to the Beginners, of any age group or gender, there’s no argument that Kristin was the one sole winner today. The sweetest victories come in the strangest ways.
congratulations from the Queen herself. Candi Murray 2012
It’s hard really to fathom all that’s come and gone since that day Kmac visited Oblivion. If you try to put yourself in a year long recovery process and get through all the battles, large and small, and get to the moment of pinning a number back on and rolling to the start line, it all seems so surreal. Fillies at the gate. Nerves ratcheted up. The loud silence of the nervous group. Then, the whistle, and all hell breaks loose. Condensing a year plus and all that’s gone into it in a paragraph or two is a sad but noble attempt. There aren’t enough words to match the emotion of our team and our community today. The circle complete, the return final, join us all in a tip of a cap and a raising of the glass to the one, the only Phoenix, Kristin McCarthy Culpepper.
safe in the loving arms of her team
We have a bunch of pictures of this glorious day right HERE for you to look at.
Dave Roth has the day captured rather neatly HERE.