NCK Raptors Hosted 2nd Race, ‘Fat Tires on the Farm’, then on to Ft. Scott

Tipton & Ft. Scott, KS – The NCK Raptors hosted the second race of season three of Kansas NICA’s mountain bike race series. Ten teams total visited the Blue Hills in North Central Kansas for the ‘Fat Tires on the Farm’ NICA race held April 16th. The pre-ride day for Saturday was a tad bit drizzly with cooler temps, but didn’t keep them from riding the course. This year the route was tweaked with some new trail added in the wooded area for some super fun twists and turns trailing off brand new built berms to catch some speed on the corners. The teams joining the Raptors came from Topeka, Emporia, Hutchinson, Leavenworth, Lawrence, Manhattan, Wichita, Louisburg and Olathe with 126 student athletes racing bikes on the Palen farm.

Marcus Hollerich, 6th grade NCK Raptor, leads off for a great race start at ‘Fat Tires on the Farm’, east of Tipton, KS, Sunday, April 16th. Photo Courtesy of Danielle Jeardoe

The junior high boys began the Fat Tires on the Farm bike races at 9:30 a.m. Jeremiah Roderick finished two laps in the 8th grade division for a 5th place podium placing. The 7th grade boys competing with 2 laps were Zane Betzold in 17th, Deecon Dill in 18th, Brodey Schreiber in 20th followed by Luke Hartsock 21st. Racing in the 6th grade category completing 2 laps was Marcus Hollerich 7th place, Clayton Underwood in 9th and Zerrick Betzold finishing in 12th. Devon Ackerman completed one lap for a 15th place finish. The race laps were a 4 mile loop of single track, traveling along both sides of Walnut Creek, winding through trees and back to the PitZone area.

The lady Raptors were the next wave with 8th grade racers of Norah Ellenz placing 2nd, Olivia Dail in 3rd, Anastasya Schreiber in 5th, Vanessa Underwood in 7th, Abby Rigney in 8th and Keira Schmitt in 11th all completing two laps. The 7th grade girls followed with Izabell Dail in 2nd and Addisen Schreiber in 4th both with two laps. Elizabeth Palen, 6th grade, completed 2 laps for a 3rd place finish.

Chris Heise competed as Varsity with 4 laps and a 5th place finish. The Freshman boys each completed 3 laps with Isaac Palen placing 5th, Luke Hollerich in 10th and Colton Jeardoe in 11th.

“The NCK Raptor athletes and coaches always enjoy hosting ‘Fat Tires on the Farm’ and look forward to riding some technical trails at Gunn Park, Fort Scott,” commented Coach John McClure.

Pedal Power at Gunn Park, Fort Scott, KS was the location for the NCK Raptor’s third race April 23rd. About half the team travelled across the state to experience the fabulous mix of fast and flowy elevation climbs these technical trails had to offer.

Jeremiah Roderick began the day with two laps in the 8th grade division for a 9th place finish. Next up was Brodey Schreiber placing 17th as a 7th grader with two laps. Clayton Underwood raced in the 6th grade wave with one lap and 13th place.

The Junior High Lady Raptors followed with Norah Ellenz in 2nd with 2 laps, 8th grade; Vanessa Underwood in 4th, Olivia Dail in 5th, Keira Schmitt in 7th and Anastasya Schreiber in 8th all completing one lap. The 7th grade girls were next with Addisen Schreiber in 4th and Izabell Dail in 5th both with one lap.

The Varsity racers completed 4 laps with senior Chris Heise coming in with a 7th place finish. Colton Jeardoe placed 10th in the Freshmen boys division and completed 2 laps.

“The NCK Raptor athletes handled the Gunn Park technical trails with perseverance and tenacity. The 4th race of the season, Snake Farm Showdown, will be held at Lawrence, KS, May 7th,” commented Coach John McClure.

For more information about joining the team or to join as a coach, visit For more information about the Kansas League, visit

Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2020 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.


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