12 months on - Stevie Smith's legacy
A true legend
You can measure the true mark of a man from how people remember them when they’re gone.
A year ago today, Stevie Smith left us in tragic circumstances. When you met Stevie he was so full of life he seemed almost invincible, it was news we simply never could have expected and we’re still reeling to this day.
The World Cup pits simply don't feel the same without his effervescent personality, his pure commitment on a racetrack and his larger than life presence. It's unlikely we'll ever find another rider quite like Stevie.
But really everything that needs to be said about his tragic passing has already been said and there's no point re-treading old ground. What continues to amaze us is the way the the entire mountain biking community has taken on the spirit of Chainsaw and chosen to commemorate him in so many amazing ways. From raising money for charity to just getting loose in his honour, we’re sure Stevie would be looking down proudly on how we’ve remembered him. Here are some of the most awesome ways his legacy has been carried on.
The Fort William Ghost Run
Has there ever been a more beautiful moment in the history of mountain biking? What started as a comment on a website became the perfect tribute to one of downhill’s greatest. There wasn’t a dry eye in the finishing area during the ghost run and with good reason. Truly special.
The Fort William train
On the same weekend, the riders remembered Stevie in their own way. Coming together as one, a huge train of them rallied down the Fort Bill track.
At the time, Brendan Fairclough said: “It’s going to be sad but I don’t think it should be, he wouldn’t want that. He’d want us all to piss about and have a laugh." Too damn right.
Stevie Smith Community Bike Park
Stevie had always dreamed of opening a bike park on his home island of Nanaimo and now, thanks to an overwhelming number of donations (including $200,00 from the local council), his dream has come true.
The Stevie Smith Community Bike Park is a $412,000 project that will include dirt jumps, a pump track and skills park and is due to open in the next few months.
Canadian glory at the World Champs
Stevie will always be an inspiration to future generations of Canadian shredders. That was already becoming obvious after the Worlds last year in Val di Sole.
Finn Iles, showing skills and maturity beyond his years all season, and Magnus Mason, an unexpected contender but fast none-the-less, finished 1 and 2. Gabe Fox, Stevie Smith’s former team manager and temporary Canadian coach couldn’t have looked more proud.
The Stevie Smith Legacy Fund
The Stevie Smith Legacy Fund was set up shortly after Stevie’s passing to help commemorate him and a stunning $75,000 has been raised by the riding community. Funds will be earmarked for a Tiann Smith initiative, assisting talented young athletes.
Ride Your Fucking Bike
Road trips, good people and amazing riding. RYFB was what all good bike films should aim to be. The film started with an emotional tribute section and ended with a huge crew honoring him on his home trails. Awesome.