The Michigan Mountain Bike Hall of Fame inducts ?members annually for contributions to Michigan Mountain Biking in the categories of: Advocacy, Trail building and Design, Racing, and Promotions.
Advocacy- Jason Aric Jones
MMBA State Board, President – 1996-2000
MMBA Championship Point Series Director – 1999
MDNR Parks and Rec Bureau Stakeholder Trails Planning Group Member – 2000-2001
MMBA Potawatomi Chapter Treasurer – 2002 to 2005
MMBA State Board, At-Large Director — 2005
Bell’s Beer Mountain Bike Team Founder/Director – 2001 to 2011
Potawatomi Mountain Biking Association Trail Coordinator – 2009 to present
Waterloo Working Group (now Executive Committee) Acting Chair – 2012 to present
SOME PAST ACCOMPLISHMENTS (1990-2004):
? Led effort in the late 1990’s to prevent land swap at Pinckney Recreation Area that would have resulted in the loss of a significant portion of trail in the Gosling Loop.
? Founded MMBA’s Mountain Kids Youth Cycling Program
? Secured large non-endemic sponsors for the MMBA during tenure as President,
including: Subaru, Dagger, Patagonia, Festina Watches, and Ibis Cycles.
? Worked with Michigan’s largest craft brewer, Bell’s Brewery, to cross-promote Michigan mountain biking and trails with Bell’s brands. This led to the successful Bell’s Brewery Mountain Bike Team, which I directed. In 2011, I disbanded the Team and facilitated the sponsorship of the Iceman Cometh Challenge between Bell’s and Iceman promoter Steve Brown.
? Planned and cut several significant reroutes on the Potawatomi Trail during the late 1990’s.
? Initiated effort to save the Brighton Time Trial from being cancelled by the local DNR land manager in 2003.
? Wrote a Mountain Bike Trails Needs Analysis “White Paper” presented to the DNR, advocating for more mountain bike trail creation and access on DNR lands.
? Introduced formalized, written business/strategic planning to the MMBA.
? Initiated several membership drive efforts, including the “2000/2000/2000” membership campaign in 1999.
? Led effort in 2004 to prevent new road building and trail rerouting at Pickerel Lake Access Site at Pinckney Recreation Area.
? Organized and provided co-leadership in efforts to preserve access for mountain bikers at Pontiac Lake Recreation Area during a time when access was threatened due to perceived conflicts between equestrians and bikers.
? Led effort advocating with the MDNR to allow Tailwind Mountain Bike Racing at Brighton and Island Lake Recreation Area. Organized venue for one of the first off-road bike race at Hudson Mills Metropark (Tailwind Cyclocross Event).
? Founder, Hellriders MTBC, an iconoclastic and controversial mountain bike clu by using provocative “Black Hat” advocacy techniques and propaganda to advance mountain bike advocacy.
SOME MORE RECENT ACCOMPLISHMENTS (2005 to present)
? As an MMBA At-Large Board Member, actively pushed for strengthening MMBA financial management and accounting practices, culminating in adoption of new accounting software and bringing on board a new Treasurer with accounting and financial experience in late 2005.
? Organized, planned and revived the Potawatomi Chapter’s Triple Trail Challenge trail ride in the summer of 2005 allowing mountain bikers to ride trails currently not open to every day mountain bike use. This event had the blessings of and received praise from the MDNR and has grown to over 700 riders each year, with proceeds going toward funding Chapter trail projects.
? Led an initiative for the MMBA Board to strengthen its strategic planning and budgeting, culminating in a Board Strategic Planning Retreat in early 2006.
? Raised awareness on a multitude of cycling advocacy issues ranging from DNR inconsistencies in advocacy position at Maybury State Park pertaining to winter riding to the potential negative effects of changes in legislation pertaining to road cycling.
? Planned and led several major reroute projects on the Potawatomi Trail, creating a new sustainable trail to replace legacy fall line sections of trail.
? Participated in an MMBA Trail Building School at Brighton Recreation Area culminating in a reroute of two sections of the Torn Shirt Trail. Worked with IMBA Trail Care Crew to plan a major reroute of the Gosling Loop of the Potawatomi Trail in September 2013.
? Participated in MMBA State Board Nominating and Finance Committees.
? Organized and promoted the Potawatomi Singlespeed World Championships event at Pinckney Recreation Area, an annual event held since 2004 on the weekend proceeding Halloween.
? Pioneered the Adopt-a- Segment Program wherein volunteers are canvassed to care for a specific color-coded section of trail at the Potawatomi Trail for a year timeframe. Wrote guidelines/volunteer handbook for this successful program which has since been adopted at other trails around the State.
? Led material reroute project in late 2005 in the “Hills of Hell” section of the Potawatomi Trail.
? Helped raised awareness regarding several advocacy issues relating to disparate and inequitable equestrian use and access of Michigan non-motorized trails.
? Founded VeloTracts (www.velotracts.com), an organization producing avant garde educational mountain bike advocacy literature.
? Introduced a proposal to the MDNR to create a new loop trail in Waterloo Recreation Area in 1998. This initiated a campaign that I have been championing for the past 16 years. In late 2013, this effort culminated in the tacit approval of the MDNR to begin trail corridor routing/planning at Waterloo. Subsequently, I organized the Waterloo Working Group as the organizational vehicle to realize
this trail. During 2014, the Waterloo Working Group has become the Waterloo Executive Committee working under the IMBA Potawatomi affiliate. I am currently Chair of this Committee. Working with various user groups, business and governmental stakeholders, we engaged professional trail builder, Spectrum Trail Designs to help plan and cut the trail. This summer we obtained approval from the MDNR for a 25 mile new trail system consisting of 5 loops to be built in progression over the next five years by Spectrum and IMBA Potawatomi. After much back-and- forth with the MDNR on hammering out an Operating Agreement and final trail alignment on the first two loops, we have signed the Agreement andwill break ground in Spring 2015. We have engaged a branding firm and, in cooperation with the MDNR, will be launching an extensive web and print media marketing and fundraising campaign this Spring to coincide with the groundbreaking. Our goal is for this trail system to rank among the top mountain bike trail systems in the Midwest. Much of the trail will be like the popular Brown County, Indiana trails as we are working with the same builder.
? Spring 2014 – conceived, wrote and secured a $10,000 REI grant for “seed money” to fund the Waterloo Trail System project.
? Winter 2013/2014 – traveled to Traverse City to advocate for resolution between skiers and bikers regarding fat biking on the VASA trail. I was the only “downstate” representative at the meeting and was spoke on behalf of the economic and tourism related merits of fat biking in Traverse City.
? Winter 2014 – conceived and lead a campaign to fund the construction of a prototype singletrack trail groomer for use on IMBA Potawatomi affiliate trails.
This campaign raised over $600 and funded the groomer’s construction. I subsequently secured permission from MDNR Park Management to implement winter grooming at Pinckney Rec Area. We were the second trail system in Southern Michigan to begin fat bike grooming (Fort Custer was first).
? Summer/Fall 2014 – worked as intermediary advocate between the MDNR and Deny the Mine group in Chelsea, Michigan to help facilitate and provide basis for the MDNR acquisition of the Cunningham Tract property situated between Waterloo and Pinckney Recreation Areas. During this process, secured future access to this parcel to connect the future Waterloo Mountain Bike Trail System with the existing Potawatomi Trail at Pinckney Recreation Area.
Paul Bailey: Trail Building & Design
Trail coordinator at Addison Oaks- responsible for re-routes and trail design making Addison Oaks County Park trail a destination location
Rick Plite: Promotions
Like all of us in the bike world, I got hooked after my first epic ride. It was a 100 mile bike ride in high school. A bunch of my friends decided to ride up to Baldwin, MI to a friends family cabin. We rigged some panniers to our $100 bikes and loaded them up with our Olympia beer and Marlboro cigarettes. We were on our way, stopping for giant greasy burgers in White Cloud and for the occasional smoke. Arriving was the most bad ass thing ever and so it began.
In my early 30’s I tried some road events but lusted after a mountain bike. I knew I would love it so I went right to the top of the line and bought a $700 steel Giant, all the while sure I would never need another bike! A year later I was back for a full suspension Cannondale. There have been more than a few that have come and gone since. Mountain biking changed everything. It reminded me of downhill skiing, having to make quick decisions navigating uneven ground at speed. ..I found my passion. I started racing all different types of races, usually placing about 30-50% of the field whether it was beginner, sport or expert. I have had about 10 podiums in my life, typically when attendance is low, ha ha.
My promotional activities started out innocently enough. A few of us started to put on some really grassroots cyclocross races at Robinette’s Orchard because the west side of the state lacked these events. Mostly for our friends, that grew into more and more people through word of mouth. We expanded to other parks and had to start thinking like grown ups and maybe get some insurance. We also did some alley cat races and fundraisers. It was a big commitment relying on my wife and friends to pull off each event. It about this time that my employer passed away and I became a self employed business owner. After being there for 30 years and now 50 years old I had to come up with a plan B. I thought to myself, we brought cyclocross to West Michigan now the state needs a 100 mile mountain bike race and the Lumberjack 100 was born. The Barry-Roubaix was next. Barry-Roubaix was formed from a local group ride on gravel roads we used to kick off the cyclocross season. The first race was in 2009 had 278 racers and has now grown to 3000 plus. In 2012 I partnered with Scott TenCate when the event was just to much to handle for my wife and I. Last year we developed the Salsa Fargo Sub-48 another first of it’s kind in Michigan. This is a self contained overnight gravel road ride, it is an altogether different kind of event and we even get to participate in this one! We are looking forward to growing these events and to developing new ways to expand the biking community.
Scott Quiring: Racing
Scott Quiring became involved in Mountain Biking in 1987. He caught the “racing bug” when he attended his first mountain bike race in 1989. Soon he was racing around the Midwestern United States every weekend. Shortly thereafter, he was racing his bike around the Nation.
In around 1992, Scott got his factory level sponsorship on a National Team representing a Grand Rapid company called Greendale Bicycle Co. With his new found support, Quiring not only was winning in Michigan but also was a serious contender between ’92-‘95 with numerous top three placings as a high ranking amateur racer in the NORBA National series, which had venues around the United States.
The 1996/1997 season was a big year for Quiring, as he turned pro and raced professionally on the Bianchi-Martini Racing Team, which was an international team that traveled around the States and the World to compete in National and World Cup events. For a brief period of time in 1996, Quiring was ranked as the nation’s fastest professional UCI U-23 racer, but later lost this points lead in this series due to bike mechanical problems.
When sponsorship negotiations fell through and the team he raced for became defunct at the end of 1997, Quiring decided he needed to build a frame to his specs for racing and get back the feeling that his first custom bikes provided.
After many years of hard work that followed, Quiring Cycles, LLC, was formed in 1999 in order to make these high-quality bicycles.
A brief summary of Quiring’s race results are as follows:
1 st Place Michigan Cross Country State Champion (’93, ’94, 95’, ’96, ’97, and ’99*) Men’s Pro-class
1 st Place in the MMBA CPS point series (pro-elite ’93,’94,’95, ’97)
1 st Place overall Iceman Commeth Champion (’94, 95’ and ’99*), Traverse City, MI USA
1 st Place overall Chequamegon 40 Champion (’99*) Cable, Wisconsin
1st Place USCF State Cyclo-Cross Champion Elite Senior Men (’98)
1 st Place overall Lumberjack 100 mile race (’05*)
*Scott was riding a custom-built Quiring frame in these victories
Some other racers Quiring has helped influence in their racing have been Mike Simonson, who with the support of Scott, rode a Quiring built 29’er to victories in Iceman (06’) and Ore to Shore (’06, ‘07) and for the 2015-16 season, Jorden Wakeley, with victories at Peak-to- Peak (’15) on a 29’er+ bike and 1 st place at Polar Roll (’16) aboard a Quiring fabricated Fatbike.
Today Scott continues to attend and compete in mountain bike races and, for a profession, he builds high quality custom frames and forks, and bicycles from titanium, steel, aluminum, and stainless at the Quiring Cycles shop located along Lake Michigan’s lakeshore in beautiful Northern Michigan. The business is operated out of a commercially-zoned 4000 sq. foot building at 8736
Advocacy- ?Jeff Buermann
Currently president of the Michigan Mountain Bike Association, Jeff’s name can be seen on the very early and formative MMBA meeting minutes as the MMBA sought to influence protections for mountain biking on state lands in the late 1980s and early 1990s. ?Jeff continues his advocacy with YouthCycling, which awards scholarships and seeks to encourage more youth to participate in this great sport.
Trail-building & Design- ?Gordie Allen
Cathy Bagi of the SWMMBA picking up award for Gordie who was on holiday travel. ?If you have ridden Fort Custer’s extensive mountain bike trail loops you are riding much of the work of Gordie Allen who devoted years to the trail system in the Fort Custer Recreation Area making it one of Michigan’s destination trail networks.
Mike Simonson is a fixture in the Michigan mountain bike racing scene, dominating for years to garner the nickname “Simonster.” Mike started racing BMX in Waterford and made the leap to dirt jumping. As a engineering student, he begain mountain biking and did his first race at Addison Oaks finishing 4th in Expert category. He moved up to Elite by the end of that season.
Quoting Mike: “I’ve always lived in Michigan and got my start here and continue to enjoy racing as a Michigander. Later in my mid 20’s I managed to accomplish one of my career goals which was to win the Iceman and I believe I’m still the last Michigander to win it. I also managed to win the Ore to Shore 3 yrs in a row in 06, 07, and 08 while racing for the legendary Bells MTB team. From my late 20’s and early 30’s I switched to focusing more on the long distance MTB racing. I believe my best finish in the NUE series was 3rd overall in 2011 and I also placed on the podium several times all over the country. Now into my mid 30’s I still love racing in my home state of Michigan but focusing more on the gravel road races where I was able to win the American Ultra Cross series 2yrs in a row in 2013-14. I think out of al the types of racing, the gravel racing is my favorite mainly because where I live in Northern Oakland County, we have 100’s of miles of beautiful gravel roads which is where I do most of my training.
I was born and raised in Michigan and will always love racing and riding my bike here. The cycling community in Michigan has always been so friendly and welcoming and in that respect I think it’s a very unique place. We might not have the mountains or roads, but we make up for it with a solid community and it’s thatcamaraderie that makes the Michigan scene so special. ”
Promotions- ?Steve Brown
Anyone in Michigan knows the event Iceman. It has become a must-do event for thousands of mountain bike enthusiasts whether they consider themselves racers or not. Steve Brown built that event up over decades to make it one of the nation’s premiere mountain bike races.
Steve begain cycling as a youth in Vermont and New Hampshire
Quoting Steve: “I discovered the freedom cycling in 9th grade as a friend I & I rode bikes to/from our respective homes instead of relying on our parents to transport us back & forth. The summer between 9th & 10th grades we rode from Tarrytown, NY to Stowe, VT and then from Hanover, NH to Point Judith, RI. We did it completely on our own in cut-offs & sneakers full panniers. No set itinerary?just an overall plan to be in Stowe in time to meet my parents. In high school (grades 10-12) I rode on a cycling team and discovered racing. From there I went to the University of Colorado in Boulder as I knew cycling was a big thing out there. I rode in the 1977 Red Zinger Classic (with Gary Fisher, though I didn?t know him at the time). While at school in Boulder I organized a few road races (very low-key) for my local club. In the summer of ?79 I rode on the track at Kenosha & Northbrook. I followed that with a summer racing in Belgium as an amateur in 1980. I went over on my own & ended up living with a bunch of Aussies.
Connie & I moved to TC in ?85 & I worked as a financial planner. Iceman started as concept to create a point to point mountain bike race after I rode in one organized by the Vasa guys. Their event only lasted one year so friends & I were looking to replace it with another event. I spent a summer riding in the State Forest exploring & connecting the trails. Around the same time, I organized the Kiwanis Club?s Ski School at Mt. Holiday & also volunteered on the first Tour de Trump road race (where I first met Jamie Smith). After those experiences I decided to work on events and started working for the Vasa Nordic ski race and helped with the Sleeping Bear National Championship events. Ultimately, Iceman required more & more of my time so I began to focus Iceman. I did also create the Glacier Gorge, International Ice, and Tour de Leelanau events but those were all short lived as I didn?t have the formula for an event with a smaller number of participants. ”
2014 Inaugural INDUCTEES
Dwain Abramowski was a co-founder of the MMBA in 1990 and volunteered in its development from 1990 to 2001. In addition to his volunteer activities, he was the Executive Director from 1995-2000 and helped in trail development, coordinate creation of the nine regional chapters in the state, the statewide Volunteer Awards Program, and the Championshiop Point Series. He also served on committees and many regional, midwest and national advocacy committees and/or organizations. He also served as publication director for the printed MMBA publication the Bent Rim Bugle (1990 to 2000).
Dwain is a graduate of Central Michigan University. He is a published writer and photographer including two books on mountain biking. He also has had articles and pictures published in a wide variety of magazines, newspapers, business journals, educational journals, newsletters and nonprofit literature. Credits include: Bicycling Magazine, Michigan Cyclist Magazine, Mountain Bike Magazine, Bike Magazine, WindSurf magazine and others celebrating the great outdoors. ?Recently, Dwain has worked at Revolution Bike in Charlevoix, Michigan and now works at the Charlevoix Public Library involved in many different library and music programs that serve the local community.
Trail building and Design
Dan Harrison has held numerous positions within the MMBA in his many years of membership including president and IMBA representative. With Dan’s involvement, the MMBA regularly received grants-in-aid to supply the chapters with tools and materials for trail building and maintenance?”an explicit acknowledgement of our responsible role as stakeholders,” to quote Dan. He had also attended IMBA summits in Moab and Washington DC. In 2006, Dan received recognized by REI which garnered the MMBA with the REI ?Stewards of the Environment? grant of $20,000.
Perhaps no more important impact was made as when Dan created the MMBA Trail School and served as the first director. The MMBA Trail School was the driving mechanism of instilling sustainable trail building and design as the standard paradigm for MMBA chapter trail building activities. Using sustainable design in presentations to land managers greatly increased the likelihood of getting new trail activity approved. During this period, approximately 125 Trail Builders were certified, 98 Crew Chiefs trained, and 32 Trail Coordinators trained. During this time Dan still found time to do trail work himself!
Brent Walk started promoting mountain biking in the spring of 1987 by doing a half time show MTB race @ the Pontiac silverdome with the AMA Supercross Races. Over 20,000 people each day were treated to a show of early MTB racers doing battle (1 lap) around the motorcycle supercross course. Soft dirt, big jumps, dirt and motorcycle exhaust greeted the riders. The riders also had to get off their bikes to run and push them through the course in some places- to a chorus of spectator boos. The next event was the Pando Challenge MTB race with 167 riders in June 1987. Brent still hosts mountain bike races at Pando making it the oldest and longest continuous mountain bike race location in the country! Brent has since then staging hundreds of races at dozens of venues all over Michigan. His race promotions company, Fun Promotions, has held Observed Trials, Time Trials, Dual Slalom, Downhill?s, Roller races, Night races, Cross country, Cross, Endurance events & now Fat Bike events.
Brent’s personal riding history includes 5 years racing BMX professionally both regionally & national events before making the transition into mountain biking. He raced the early MTB races doing many national events and working with a local manufacturer for a few seasons. Starting as a racer, then team manager and then a promoter, he have been heavily involved in cycling most of his life and still has a passion for cycling.
Art Fleming has a long history of mountain bike racing dating back to 1991. He continues to race! Some Art’s accomplishments as a Michigan mountain bike racer span the globe and the country and include:
1996 Masters World Champion: Men 50-59 in Cairns, Australia. At other Masters World Championships between 1998 and 2004 he placed 2nd twice, 3rd, 5th, and 10th
1997 National Champion: Expert Men 50-59?.Park City, UT, 1999 National Champion: Expert Men 50-59 at Mt. Snow, VT and 2000 National Champion: Expert Men 50-59 at Mammoth Mountain, CA
Regional Masters Expert Age-Group Champion or multi-time podium medalist at Red Wing, MN, Snowshoe, WV, Helen, GA, Sugarloaf Resort, MI, Bryson City, NC, Seven Springs, PA, Schuss Mountain, MI, Birmingham, AL, Paoli, IN, and Bellaire, MI.
Art was also Masters National Mountain Bike team member for 6 years, Nationally Ranked Mountain Bike Expert Veteran/Master rider for 8 years and many-times champion and podium holder over the years in the MMBA Championship Point Series, the Fun Promotions Michigan Cup, the USAC/Norba Michigan Series, and the Tailwind Time Trial Series.
Art has also raced and finished the Iceman Cometh race at least sixteen times and is a 4-time age group winner with multiple appearances on the podium. Art is also an Individual Age-Group winner at Chequamegon 40 and Ore-2-Shore. He finished the Leadville 100 mountain bike race ten times and was a four time age group winner and current record holder for the Men 70+ category!