(May 18, 2013) SEDALIA, Colo—Once again, Warriors Cycling provided another great race to compliment their unsanctioned marathon style mountain bike race series. On Friday afternoon, racers started rolling in to Roundup Ranch, host to the event venue, to recon and prepare for the next day’s challenging course. After the sun set on Friday, a pot-luck dinner and night time crit as well as free camping provided some friendly mountain bike culture and a fun family environment which was attested to by the 75 juniors who raced on Saturday.
At 830am, the first wave of marathon racers, represented by the men’s open class, started the day with a one mile, paved, neutral start from Roundup Ranch before hitting the dirt to contest the 48 mile marathon race. All racers (marathon, half-marathon and xc ) started with a shortened 10 mile loop before proceeding to the longer 18 mile loop.
Unanimously, everyone agreed the course was what a real mountain bike race course should be. Specifically, it was very hard with a lot of quality singletrack. Miles and miles of technical, yet fun, trail had racers either climbing or descending for nearly 10,000 feet of vert in the marathon race. In addition to the relentless climbing, numerous stream crossings, rocks and roots provided for a wide array of mechanicals, worn out bodies and DNF’s.
In the men’s open marathon race, Fernando Paez (Rotor/Twenty2 Cycles) set a very fast pace to lead the first and second laps which resulted in a dnf. Moderating his efforts and riding clean, Kalan Beisel (Orbea-Tuff Shed) took a very hard-earned win. “I think everybody is tired, it was a hard, hard day in the saddle. Almost a 50 miles course with 5 hour finish times gives you an idea about it. It was a grind fest, but the trails were awesome.”
Marathon singlespeed winner Bradley Berger (Bach Builders) said, “It was brutally hard, I was spent after the second lap and in survival mode. I was on a 34x21, which I think was the right gear, but on those steep climbs there was no such thing as the right gear.”
Christena Ward (Summit Velo), was the only woman to tackle the women’s open race, and won it by finishing. The half marathon women’s open race at 28 miles proved to be a bit more competitive with Molly Throdahl taking the win over Amanda Carey (Stans NoTubes) in second, Rachel Hadley (Xssentials) in third, fourth going to Rebecca Gross (Tought Girl) and Cristina Begy (REEB/Oskar Blues) in fifth.