March 2, 2012

Snake winds down for year

The Snake Creek Gap Time Trails will return to the rocky Pinhoti Trail in Whitfield County on Saturday. This race will be the third of the series, concluding the 2012 time trials.

The event is headed up by the Northwest Georgia Southern Off-Road Bicycle Association. The three races, held on the first Saturday of each of the first three months of the year, are expected to bring more than $90,000 in tourism and economic impact to Dalton.

“February brought in 354 racers from all over the United States and Canada,” said NWGA-SORBA President Conrad Fernandez. “Out of those 354, 207 riders still qualify for the coveted belt buckle. In order to qualify for the buckle, riders must complete the 34-mile time trial during all three races of the year.”

In addition to sponsoring the belt buckle, the Dalton Convention and Visitors Bureau will be hosting a complimentary spaghetti dinner today at the Dalton Depot Restaurant. The dinner is open to all registered riders of the event.

During the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War, the Snake Creek Gap Time Trial Series has included a North vs. South-themed challenge, with teams divided by region. After the races in January and February, the North continues to lead the South in the friendly competition. After Saturday’s race, the trophy will be awarded to the winning team and will be on display at the Dalton Freight Depot at 350 S. Depot St.

In addition to watching cyclists come to the finish line at the Northwest Georgia Trade and Convention Center on Saturday, spectators can check out several bike-related expo booths that will be set up there. The awards ceremony is slated for 4 p.m.

This is the eighth year that the Snake Creek Gap Time Trials are being held on the Pinhoti. For information, visit nwgasorba.org.

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