Ahhhhh, the men's B. The category that shows us the future of cross in Montana. It's hard to predict the men's B. There's always the possibility of ringer coming in and taking the glory. We saw this happen with Chris Connelly at Rolling Thunder, and Phil Hess at the Helena race last weekend. The Five Valley guys have had a strong showing in the men's B, essentially dominating the with Kyle, Erik, Howard and Ely all in the top 5. Since the championships is at the Fort, it gives these guys an added hometown advantage.
1st Place: Kyle Shannon
You can't not pick him to win. He won both the Missoula and Montana series, and is by far the most consistent rider in the B's. He's got great cross skills, and is a rider for the future. He knows the fort well and should be able to take advantage of certain sections.
2nd Place: Ben Raffato
Raffato breaks up the Five Valley podium. He's only raced once in his life and that was at Woodland Park. He's got a big engine for his xc skiing days, and can push himself past his limits. I've heard he's racing this weekend.
3rd Place: Erik Digby
Erik has been a great racer all season. He's a big part of the FVV domination of this category. He gets better as the race goes on. Watch him at the end of the race to start picking people off. Erik is another rider for the future.
4th Place: Howard Williams
Another consistent performer, Howard has been right there all season. He won the Lubrecht race in Missoula. If the tempo is to his liking watch for Howard to be in the hunt for the victory.
5th Place: Murphy Woodhouse
Murphy is always good for a top 5. He's had a great season in the Missoula series. Murphy is another one of those late charge guys. Watch out for him towards the end of the race.