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  1. #1
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    Good job! Blown Away At Trans-Iowa

    304 miles.
    22 mph sustained cross wind.
    Sub freezing temps.
    Mind numbing flatness and nothingness
    9 finishers out or 51.
    OUCH!
    Who will challenge the second running of Trans-Iowa?

    A truly epic event. So if you were there, what did ya think? Hard enough for ya?

    Brief write up here.
    Some pictures here.

    Lets here from some racers in the event.

    Here are the results...
    Single Speed
    1. Todd Scott- 4th overall
    2. Patrick Humenny-5th overall
    3. Joe Partridge-8th overall

    Overall Results
    1. Ira Ryan - sub 24 hr time
    2. Brian Hannon - sub 24 hr. time
    3. Alex Dolpp - sub 24hr. time
    4. Todd Scott
    5. Patrick Humenny
    6. Brett Davis
    7. Jim Cochran / Steve Goetzelman (tie)
    8. Joe Partridge

    Women
    One women entrant took the start, but did not finish (3 were registered)
    Last edited by KERKOVEJ; 04-25-2005 at 06:03 AM.

  2. #2
    Witty McWitterson
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    Dude. I saw a few of the finishers at the awards (co-held w/the Decorah TT today), and they simply looked shelled. Especailly Fasabinder. I looked over my shoulder at one point to see him blankly staring at a blank wall. It was easy to pick them all out too. They're all wind burned pretty bad. After seeing the weather they had to deal with, I have all that much more respect for the folks that rode it, much more so for those that actaully finished it. Nice event. Its got a frend from the Cities talking about entering next year.
    Just a regular guy.

  3. #3
    your ankles are fat
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    Hallo and Good-Day, ya hosers

    my knees ache!!!! I slept the whole way home....9hours, good on Naomi(my wife) for the marathon drive back..too bad we couldn't stick around fot the awards...but jobs beckoned...glad to meet all of ya, ride with most of ya...Ill more than likely see some of ya around later this summer, assuming I don't pack it in and take up crochet...not likely...btw Jeff, the only "paved road"(according to the cue sheets) around that State park we went through went back to the trailhead...not a detour I was happy to make....

    It was all good though, see ya'll around. must get Advil!!!

    Patrick Humenny
    cptnpwdr@yahoo.com

  4. #4
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    ?

    The cue sheets should have been dead on. Maybe you mis read it...remember when a group of us were heading down the road and we had to turn left, but you kept going straight? We had to yell at you to turn around
    One of the guys in the group suggested we just let you go, but geeze, we are there to finish, not get people lost.
    Way to finish. Only 16 left Algona for Decorah. Only 9 made it. The guys that made it looked like death hung over at the awards.
    Thanks for coming down and putting that Cannondale 1FG to shame

  5. #5
    Harmonius Wrench
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    Bit-o-Confusion

    Yeah, there was a bit of confusion there at the State Park, but be VERY GLAD you didn't actually go THROUGH the single track section. It was HELL!!!! I trail ran that section to set up the course and ( Hanging head in shame!!) didn't get the entrance marked out well enough! Oh well, the pavement was way better, allthough I know that doesn't seem possible. Believe me when I tell you that it was super muddy in spots, way rutted out in the down hill sections, and horse hoof pock marked over every square inch of it. I rolled my ankle twice in there!

    Congrats to you Patrick, and all who finished!!! Pats on the back to all who started the event!!!

    Mad Props to all who volunteered, put out a helping hand, or supported this event in any way!

    Guitar Ted
    Last edited by Guitar Ted; 04-25-2005 at 05:11 AM. Reason: Dope Spelling!!
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  6. #6
    your ankles are fat
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    Jeff,
    I very clearly remember day dreaming and you guys yelling to me, I was a dumb-ass there for sure, thanks.

    Ted,
    I found the state park alright at around 10:30pm, after stopping in the town before it for a burger, I found the hiking/horse/ trail fine too, which I WALKED!, I shohld've known something wasn't right when I didn't see any tyre tracks on it...just horses, but the road on the other side to Dogwood, was gravel, not paved...unfortunetely it was too packed to see other tyre tracks showing that others had ridden it, hense my adventure.

    I'm sure I'm not the only one who found himself in a pradicament(or two) along the way...THE RACE WAS KICK-ASS, Jeff, no-question. I look forward to doing it again next year. Thanks to the voluteers too.

  7. #7
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    Good Race

    Quote Originally Posted by KERKOVEJ
    304 miles.
    22 mph sustained cross wind.
    Sub freezing temps.
    Mind numbing flatness and nothingness
    9 finishers out or 51.
    OUCH!
    Who will challenge the second running of Trans-Iowa?

    A truly epic event. So if you were there, what did ya think? Hard enough for ya?

    Brief write up here.
    Some pictures here.

    Lets here from some racers in the event.

    Here are the results...
    Single Speed
    1. Todd Scott- fourth overall
    2. Patrick Humenny-fifth overall

    Overall Results
    1. Ira Ryan - sub 24 hr time
    2. Brian Hannon - sub 24 hr. time
    3. Alex Dolpp - sub 24hr. time
    4. Todd Scott
    5. Patrick Humenny
    6. Brett Davis
    7. Jim Cochran / Steve Goetzelman (tie)
    8. Joe Partridge

    Women
    One women entrant took the start, but did not finish
    Great race! You deserve much credit for all your work, Jeff.

    The last 35 miles were...hard. Iowa = NOT FLAT!

    Thanks again for a great race! From now on, when ever someone mentions Iowa, I will hear the sound of a roaring wind blasting past my ears....

    Joe
    Last edited by Joe_Jitsu; 04-25-2005 at 08:41 AM.

  8. #8
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    What a Ride

    Thanks to Jeff, Guitar Ted and all the other volunteers for putting on a great race. Aside from the "brisk" North (Northwest) wind the conditions were great..no rain, lots of sun and clear skies. I met some great people along the way and we shared in our suffering...Mike Curiak, Joe Partridige and Patty, the Iowa City cyclocrossers, among others. Congrats to all racers and fellow finishes. Check back for full report. Keep pedaling, Brett

  9. #9
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    Race Review (Warning...This is Long, Like the Race)

    Hope you enjoy my recap of a race I did over the weekend. Warning...it's long, but then again so was the race.

    "Pain is temporary, quitting is forever. Forever is a long time, but pain hurts…decisions, decisions." Unknown

    I believe the above quote, which I borrowed from an Internet message board, just about sums up my experience at the inaugural Trans-Iowa race. The race is one I will not soon forget because of the camaraderie with fellow racers, the tortuous 25+ mph winds and the lovely rural landscape of northern Iowa. Attrition was the overriding theme for the race as 51 racers took the start from Hawarden, Iowa and only 9 made it to the finish 305 miles later in Decorah, Iowa. Fortunately (I think), I was among the lucky finishers, completing the race in around 26 hours. The key to my race success was eating a lot and often, drinking a lot and often and resisting the urge to quit during the hours of 2:00am to 5:30am on Sunday morning. I ended up in 6th place and as I sit here on Sunday evening I feel pretty good, all things considered. We’ll see how I feel Monday morning at work. The winner was Ira Ryan from Portland, Oregon riding a cross bike with what looked like 700 x 32 tires. He did it in sub-24 hours.

    For the unfamiliar, Trans-Iowa is a 305-mile point-to-point race across Northern Iowa consisting of 95% gravel roads, 4% pavement, and 1% singletrack. The race started in rural Hawarden, Iowa near the border of Nebraska and heads east finishing in Decorah, Iowa. Making it more challenging is that the race is completely un-supported, meaning there are no aid stations and no outside assistance is permitted, except at the single checkpoint located at 127 miles in Algona, Iowa. Also adding to the difficulty is that there was a 10-hour cutoff to reach Algona and a 30-hour time limit to complete the entire 305 miles.

    Trans Iowa is the brainchild of Jeff Kerkove and Guitar Ted (sorry I can’t recall his real name) of Cedar Falls, Iowa. Tired of 12 & 24 solo events that charge hundreds of dollars in entry fees and send you around the same circuit ad nausea and inspired by other unsupported off road endurance races, Jeff and Guitar Ted decided to promote a new race…Trans-Iowa. Their creation (or their madness, depending on your perspective) is a 305-mile, unsupported point-to-point race across the gravel roads of Iowa with a very modest, bordering on ridiculously low $20 entry fee. They limited the field to 50 entrants and all the spots were filled within 30 days. I was able to enter the event when a registered rider canceled in March and l was fortunate to get the spot (I wasn't feeling so lucky at 4:00am!!). Overall, Jeff and Guitar Ted with the help of a strong group of volunteers did a great job on this first year event, which will hopefully become an annual one. Thanks guys.

    My Mom and Dad and I departed Cleveland at 5:30pm on Thursday evening and headed west towards Iowa. Thanks for coming Mom and Dad. We drove until about midnight and grabbed a cheap motel in Peru, Illinois. We were back on the road by 7:00am the next morning and made it to Hawarden by 4:00pm (central time). The event promoters had reserved a large private room at the Pizza Ranch, a rather large midwestern pizza franchise, for a pre-race meal. We dined on a plentiful pizza/past buffet, met some new people and received our race bags complete with route sheets, race numbers, free sunglasses and lots of other generous goodies. Best race swag I’ve ever got…unbelievable…all for $20 entry fee. A bargain at $0.07/mile. After dinner we rested in the hotel and I checked over my bike and packed my hydration pack and seat bag. I ended up going to bed at midnight as I stayed up late to watch the weather reports for Saturday and Sunday. The good news was that there would be clear skies, no precipitation and highs in the low to mid 50s. The bad news was overnight lows in high 20s and 20-25 mph winds from the North (with gusts up to 35 mph).

    We got up at around 5:30am, checked out and made our way to a local diner for a big breakfast consisting of short stack of pancakes, 2 eggs, sausage, toast, orange juice and coffee. What can I say, I like to eat. We arrived at the starting line at 7:15, just in time for the riders meeting, and were greeted by clear skies, temps in the high 30s and strong winds of 20 mph from the north. I had decided to ride my full suspension Specialized Epic, rather than my cyclocross bike, single speed or hardtail because I felt the extra cushion would be beneficial as well as I have done several 100+ mile rides on this set up. At the start, it was obvious not everyone shared my thoughts on bike selection, as there was a wide range of bikes including cyclocross bikes, hardtails with front suspension, fully rigid hardtails and a surprising number of single speed bikes. I carefully considered what I needed to carry with me as far a food, water, and clothing for the first 127-mile leg of the race to Algona. I was vacillating right up to the last moment, but I eventually decided to take my camelback with 70 oz bladder, two bottles of Accelerade, 2 PBJs, 4 Gel packs and a Powerbar. It was still not enough, as ran out of water about 80 miles into the race, but I was lucky to happen upon a nice man working in his yard who let me fill up my bottles and camelback from his well.

    Anyway we started right at 8:00am with a 2-mile neutral roll out. After the car broke off, the pace immediately quickened and the group for the first time felt the brunt of the 20+ mph cross wind from the North. Despite the wind and the miles that lay ahead, the pace was faster than I thought it might be. Within a mile or two we were “lined out” and by the 15-mile mark I noticed that the front group was already down to 20 or so. At about the 20 mile mark, a group of 5-7 rolled off the front. As I would later learn these guys were all on cyclocross bikes and based on their high pace appeared to not know this was a 300-mile race!! I thought for sure these guys would all blow up and come back to us, but despite their hard pace setting, 4 of the 9 total finishers would come from this group as well as the 1st and 2nd place racers. Behind the front group (hereafter referred to as the cyclocross guys), there were 8 or so of us that were chasing and the rest of the 51 starters were somewhere further back.

    At about the 40-mile mark we encountered the second B road section, which consisted of a dirt only path, wide enough for agricultural equipment, with no gravel that because of the prior days rain was pretty muddy. Just as we were approaching this section, myself and Patty from Canada, whose was riding a single speed with a 44x16 gear selection (what’s up with that?), had rolled away from the chase group. As we came to the B road section, the cyclocross guys had dismounted and were carrying their bikes in the grass to the side of the B road as it looked unrideable. So Patty from Canada rolls right through it and I follow and it is turns out to be rideable after all. So Patty and I are in 1st and 2nd with only 260 miles to go. I joked with Patty about there being a cash prime at the 50-mile mark. I don't think he believed me.

    The cyclocross guys, whose names I later learned were Ira, Brian, Jim and Steve caught up to us and I rode with them for 10-15 miles until I flatted. In hindsight, flatting was the best thing that could have happened as I was pushing it a little too hard with the front group. It took me about 4-5 minutes to fix the flat and by that time the chase group had caught and passed me. I rode the next 30 miles more or less by myself and this was when I stopped and begged for water from the friendly grass cutting Iowan. At about the 80-mile mark a group of 4 caught me. I would later learn their names, Joe Partridge, Todd Scott and Mike Curiak. Joe and Todd where riding single speeds and Mike was riding a sweet Moots softail with 700 Zipp carbon wheels. Before the race I considered riding my single speed for approximately 5 seconds but even I realized a riding a single speed in this event was not very prudent. A while later we caught up to Jeff Kerkove, the race promoter and a few others.

    At the 100-mile mark, we passed through another town and all but Mike Curiak and I turned off to refuel. I rode with Mike for the next 27 miles until we arrive in Algona. During this I learned that Mike Curiak, on the Moots with 700 Zipps, is from Colorado and has competed and won several off road bike races including the 350 mile Alaska Iditabike, the 1,100 mile Alaska Iditabike, the 2,500 Continental Divide race and countless others. It was nice to chat with someone to help pass the time and I figured if I could stick with Mike I stood a good chance of finishing in light of his top-notch cycling palmares. At least I would not die of exposure with Mike!! Right before Algona, Patty from Canada caught us pushing a ridiculously huge 44x16 gear on his Cannondale 1FG single speed.

    We arrived in Algona and I switched out my front wheel, lubed my chain, grabbed more warm clothes, ate a 6-inch subway Italian sub, grabbed more bottles, filled my camelback, and forgot my clear glasses (rats!). Within 20 minutes or less, I was back on the road. As it turned out, Mike Curiak and eventual second place finisher Brian (one of the cyclocross guys on a Redline) were leaving Algona at the same time. As we rode together, they informed me that only Alex Dolp (on a Specialized hardtail with front suspension), who I had met at a Mohican 100 last year was ahead of us by some 12 minutes. The rest of the cyclocross guys that had led the race, took a longer break in Algona, however, within 10 miles they caught us. For about 10 miles we all rode together, until Mike and I dropped off the pace. Having never ridden 300 miles at one time, I was more concerned with finishing than winning and thought I should stay with Mike the Alaska Guy given his experience in ultra endurance events (not to mention his survival skills, if things got really ugly).

    Mike and I celebrated the 150 mile half way mark with a high five. By the time we hit the 160-miles, we had our lights on, extra jackets on and were settling into a groove for the night. We nearly caught Alex Dolp, who had obviously been caught and dropped by the cyclocross guys, but we never quite did. At 175 miles, which I guess was around midnight, the two single speeders, Joe and Todd caught up to us. Joe was riding a single speed Airborne with titanium rigid fork and Todd was riding a fully rigid Kona hardtail. Each of them had chosen a far more sensible gear selection than Patty from Canada’s 44x16. We rode together until we got to the next town where we stopped at a Hardees to refuel. Two of the cyclocross guys (Jim and Steve) had just finished a burger and fries and were getting ready to roll out.

    Mike and Joe stayed behind at the Hardees, while Todd and I followed Jim and Steve. I rode with them for 5-10 miles but I dropped off by myself again because I wanted to pace myself. Soon Mike and Joe caught me and we rode together until we passed through the next town. It was about 3:00am or so and as we came into town, Jim and Steve, 2 of the cyclocross guys, were just leaving. Joe and I HAD to stop for water and food, however, Mike and my old pal Patty from Canada followed them. Joe and I were pretty messed up at this point. It must have been pretty humorous (or pathetic) he and I stumbling around a 24-hour quickie mart at 3:00am in full cycling kit both throat deep in the hurt locker. If that town had a hotel, I would have probably checked in and DNFed right there. Unfortunately the only option was to keep going. It was at this point I made a decision that in hindsight allowed me to finish this race…I bought 2 cheese, egg and sausage breakfast burritos. They were hot and looked delicious, so I devoured one and put the other in my jersey pocket, which secondarily kept my back nice and warm. Joe looked at me like I was crazy, but they sure were yummy.

    Joe and I rolled out of town and for the next few hours things were ugly…until 5:30am and the sun began to rise to bring light to the previously dark northern Iowa plains. Anyone that has done a 24 hour race know what a beautiful site that rising sun is…the suffering of night behind you and the hope that daylight will bring renewed energy and eventually the end of the race. Joe and I soldiered though the 265 mile mark until we got to the next town, where we parted ways. Joe went into town to rest up while I forged onward solo. What Joe and I did not know at the time (although I suspected it) is that we were the last 2 racers on the course, 8th and 9th place.

    As the race promoter warned us, the last 35-40 miles were the hardest of the race with endless supply of steep rollers and 2 or 3 legitimate 1 mile or so climbs. With the temperatures climbing to the mid to upper 40s, I stopped to shed some layers and to put some sunglasses on. I was feeling pretty good at this point so I picked up the pace with the hope of perhaps catching some of the now shrinking field. For about 10 miles I hammered in the big ring a section of rollers and was surprised how good my legs felt, rarely letting my pace over the rollers dip below 13-15 mph.

    At about 290 miles I caught Jim and Steve, two of the cyclocross guys. It sounded like they had a rough night in the cold and had taken some wrong turns that caused them to ride unnecessarily some steep hills. I rode with them for a few miles and quizzed them about who was ahead of us and who had dropped out. They told me a guy named Ira from Oregon and Brian from Colorado (two of the cyclocross guys) were ahead but they had not seen or heard anything from them since the 200 mile mark. I also learned that Todd Scott on the fully rigid Kona single speed had dropped them and that Patty from Canada was up the road on still pushing the massive 44x16 gear on his single speed. And much to my surprise, they also told me that Mike Curiak (Moots with 700 Zipps), Jeff Kerkove (race promoter), and Ernesto Marenchin (2004 winner of 24 Hours of Snowshoe) had dropped out of the race. They also told me that only 16 guys left Algona for the 2nd half of the course.

    So after getting an idea what was going on with the race standings, I told Jim and Steve I was going to try and catch Paddy from Canada and I quickly attacked. I hammered the next section of rollers and tried to get out of sight, which is hard to do in the plains of Iowa. I kept thinking they were going to catch me so I kept a hard pace going. The last few climbs were tough, but the last few miles of the course were awesome with a 25 mph tailwind roller section that was like an amusement park ride and a long twisty downhill finish that made me wonder if I was still in Iowa or had been transported to some strange land via a time space continuum. I reached the finish line and the looks of respect and disbelief from the modest crowd was satisfaction enough for a race I won’t soon forget. Thanks to Mom and Dad for spending a weekend road tripping with me and for driving my carcass home. Thank again to Jeff and Guitar Ted for promoting this event.

    Thanks for reading. -Brett

    Link to race results and commentary: http://www.jeffkerkove.blogspot.com
    Last edited by redsnakebite; 04-25-2005 at 03:26 PM.

  10. #10
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    Congratulations to all who participated. A special thumbs up to the guys from Michigan, Alex Dolpp, Todd Scott and Joe Partidge.

  11. #11
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    More wind please.

    I think this is where Mike Curiak asked Guitar Ted (a.k.a. Mark) if he could turn up the wind a few more notches.
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  12. #12
    your ankles are fat
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    definetly a kodak moment.

  13. #13
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    Fassbinder

    "I need a shower and a beer. Well....how about just a beer?"
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  14. #14
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    PaddyH

    PaddyH get'n ready to go back out and put that Cannondale 1 FG to shame.
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  15. #15
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    Alex Dolpp

    Dude looked like he got beat up out back behind the bar at the awards banquet. I hope he is OK. Are you OK Alex?
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  16. #16
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    Internet quote?

    Quote from redsnakebites post

    """ "Pain is temporary, quitting is forever. Forever is a long time, but pain hurts…decisions, decisions." Unknown

    I believe the above quote, which I borrowed from an Internet message board, just about sums up my experience at the inaugural Trans-Iowa race. """

    Lance came up with the first part. I added the second part. Don't think I have ever been quoted before. I feel validated, sob.
    Check my sig down below.
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  17. #17
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    You are Correct

    Quote Originally Posted by teamdicky
    Quote from redsnakebites post

    """ "Pain is temporary, quitting is forever. Forever is a long time, but pain hurts…decisions, decisions." Unknown

    I believe the above quote, which I borrowed from an Internet message board, just about sums up my experience at the inaugural Trans-Iowa race. """

    Lance came up with the first part. I added the second part. Don't think I have ever been quoted before. I feel validated, sob.
    Check my sig down below.

    Thanks for the quote Team Dicky. Your previous writings (Costa Rica) have inspired me to share my experiences. You are the man!!

  18. #18
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    Thanks for your write-up

    I hate that I couldn't do this one. There seems to be a decent amount of logistics on the travel end of deal. I couldn't figure out how to work it.
    My wife didn't really want to go to Iowa, then across it, all in the name of her lesser half. She is already letting me get away with quite a bit over the next few months. Chalk a few more life-long goals off the board this year.
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  19. #19
    Good ol' shoe...
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    Congrats

    to anyone who even entered!

    Epic. Nice pics. Great job!
    "Republicans, Democrats and American people who support giving up a little liberty for a small measure of security (such as the Patriot Act) deserve neither."
    -Ben Franklin, paraphrased

    "Love your country, always, and your government when they deserve it..."
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by redsnakebite
    At about 290 miles I caught Jim and Steve, two of the cyclocross guys... I also learned that Todd Scott on the fully rigid Kona single speed had dropped them...
    Thanks for the entertaining write up, Brett. That was fun to read and re-live the memories.

    I wouldn't say I dropped Jim and Steve in the typical Tour de France sense. Let's just say they found it real comfortable sitting on those big bags of salt at the Quickie Mart with food and drink in hand. I had just chased a full cup of watered-down coffee with a few sips of Red Bull. Two chemical packs were starting to thaw my toes. The Tempations were singing "The Way You Do The Things You Do" on the scratchy Mart speakers and I was ready to finish this puppy up.

    And a big thanks to Jeff, Guitar Ted, Ward of Decorah Bicycles, all the volunteers, the friendly racers, and Becky and Mary for their support.

    Todd

  21. #21
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    Trans-iowa Podium

    Here are your top 3 freaks
    From L to R...
    Brian Hannon (2rd)
    Ira Ryan (1st)
    Alex Dolpp (3rd)

    I have posted Alex Dolpp's race story that he e-mailed me on my endurance blog. It's a darn good read.
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  22. #22
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    Jeff( and G-Ted),

    thanks for starting our bike season off to a wicked start! I really hope you put this race on again next year.

    Patrick

  23. #23
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    Your Welcome...I think!!

    Never quite sure what to say. I help to impose such suffering, and then people thank me for it!

    A 2006 Trans Iowa, you say? Hmmm.........the wheels are turning even as we speak!

    By the way, awesome job to you and all the entrants. Couldn't have asked for a better bunch of freaks. I only regret that I did not get to meet you all. Perhaps next year?

    Be sure to give Jeff and I your feedback, if you have not all ready, as to what you'd change, or like to see. We probably won't listen to you, but I thought that that would be a polite thing to say! !!!
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    I just uploaded some photos of the Michigan crew, primarily before and after the race.
    http://www.allyeargear.com/gallery/TransIowa05

  25. #25
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    Well all I can say is - You guys are totally crazy ! Congrats on doing that distance, farless in a lot less than ideal conditions. I did my 1st round the island ride on Sunday - 58 miles on tarmac - and it took just over 3 1/2 hours and we had some head winds between 10-15mph in certain parts.. It didn't kill me, actually I felt quite good after, 'cept for my hip which started hurting about 20 miles into the ride - I actually went and did a short 9 1/2 miles trail ride that afternoon.

    How rough were those gravel roads? How much time did you spend resting/eating/sleeping or was it just a straight through kill yourself fest.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  26. #26
    This place needs an enema
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    Good job! Great race!

    To Jeff and Mark: A big thanks for putting this on and giving us all another alternative to riding around in circles. I think this race is an instant classic, and only needs a few kinks worked out to truly become legendary.

    I loved riding onto the first few B-roads and having to search around for a line while avoiding mud and shallow grave-sized holes. Reminded me of watching the hard men ride into the Forest of Arenberg every year in Paris-Roubaix. I think you guys should do everything you can to include more sections like that, more mud, more hills, and yes, more wind. I was serious when I asked Mark to crank up the wind a bit more, as it's not truly windy until you can't keep it on the road. What we had was just good resistance training.

    Route the trail through a couple of pig farms so that we all get some real dirt on us next time...

    All of the above would keep it from becoming a road race. Not that road racing is a bad thing, but it'd be nice if someone that shows up with a bunch of friends to draft didn't have an instant advantage over all of the folks that show up solo. KnowwhatImean?

    Also, the mileage on the cue sheets was not 'on'--your car's speedo gear must be for a different tire size than what you had on there. By Algona most folks were reading 6-7 miles more than the cue sheets indicated. There was unanimous agreement with that fact from all of the racers that I spoke with on-course. I had done a roll-out to get the exact mm measurement for my tires, yet during the race I had to drop my computer's calibration by 45mm to get it to read right.

    There were a few places on course where the directions weren't accurate (coming into Forest City is the one that springs to mind), but it was easy enough to figure out where to go, so no big deal.

    To all that finished: Big Congrats. Going into the race not knowing what to expect as far as roads, temps, conditions, etc... and then making it out the other end with a lot of determination is an impressive thing. Hats off to you.

    To Brett and Joe: As we rode the last few miles into Osage, both of you made comments about wanting to just check into a room and call it a day. I knew that it was just whistling in the dark, but still I didn't want to give either of you any reason to pull out. So when you pulled off to get some grub I tried to get out of sight as quickly as possible. I was afraid that if you knew I was dropping out you might join me. In short, sorry for not saying 'thanks for the company' on-course, and congrats on gutting it out to the finish.

    To Todd and Alex: Thanks for the company, the good stories, the ride, and congrats on plugging away at it to finish strong. Excellent, impressive job from both of you. Hope to race with you again this summer.

    To Ira and Brian: I'm not worthy...! Excellent race, great to see you two duking it out right to the end. Wish I coulda been there to mix it up with you, and I hope to get that chance again soon.

    To Patrick: Good god man, 44 x 16?! More power to you, but fergawdsake get a smaller gear or start saving up for knee surgery...

    As for me, I started having achilles pain after ~50 miles, so I just backed off the pace and tried to keep it manageable. After Algona I had a bad stomach cramp and I was fortunate to have Brett to ride with. Still don't understand why he didn't just take off--but for whatever reason he hung with me and it was great to have the company. Once the cramp passed I was feeling great and we started catching people. Having you rabbits out ahead was really motivating and I started to push the pace a bit. Unfortunately, by Forest City both achilles were extremely painful and I was starting to lose range of motion as well. I backed off the pace again and managed to limp into Osage, where I had no choice but to pull the plug. I was (am) bummed about that--I really wanted to see the sadistic last 30 miles of the course. Maybe next year.

    I'll be spending the next few weeks letting my achilles recover, and hoping that they're ready for the Kokopelli Race. Hope to see some of you out here for that.

    Cheers,

    MC

  27. #27
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    Points well taken

    Mike, thank you for your comments. I have to say that both Jeff and I in no way expected this to even come as close to "legendary" status as it already has. Your Paris-Roubaix comment is right on. That is exactly why those sections were there. I remember you telling me about having more of those sections when we chatted in Algona. I had already earmarked that comment then. As to this years version, Jeff and I were being careful, and conservative with course difficulties. We were total noobs to this type of planning, and event. Glad the recipe was close to your liking! We'll spice things up a little for next year as well.

    As to the course mileages, we were aware that the bicycle computer to car odometer conversion was going to be problematic. Fortunately, Iowa marks just about everything with a "street sign" which saved our a$$. With little time between the initial conception and the event, going into winter, and having little to no money in the winter,( Jeff and I make our living wrenching on bikes, after all) we found it hard to get our research done. Admittedly we did the bare minimum, and please accept my appologies! Next year is already in the initial planning stages. We will definitely do better in that area!

    Pig farm crossings? You do not know what you ask of us! At any rate, we do agree with you that the event needs a few wise tweaks. We are grateful for your participation, comments, and effort. Get healed up, and if you were not kidding about the wind, I hope you were kidding about another comment you made to me. That would be a sad day in this sport.
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    Hey Mark

    In your response there were lots of apologetic sounding words. No need! It's hard to tell by reading, but I was pretty psyched with everything about the way the race turned out. We all knew that it was done on a shoestring, and with the size of our goodie bags everything else was really just a bonus.

    Agreed that the turns/mileages were not a big issue due to the plethora of signage placed by the state. Still, you never know when a tricky turn will come, and constantly figuring out the real mileage in your head at 2am so that you don't make mistakes gets kind of old. On the other hand, maybe that's to my advantage and shouldn't be changed...?!

    Mwahahahahahaaaaa............

    The outcome of the other comment I made to you is in many ways directly related to how well I heal up. Only time will tell.

    Thanks again,

    MC

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    Am I the only one....?

    Great race, guys! I had fun at my first "mountain bike" race, even though I was one of those who pulled out at Algona. Got there at 6:15. I knew it would be close all day, as that was faster than what I had planned on riding at for the first 100 miles. Once I left Emmetsburg, I knew it wasn't looking good to make Algona in time, and the fresh gravel sealed it. When I made it to the checkpoint and was told the deadline was extended to 7, my mind had finished the race even though the body still felt good (or at least as good as it can after 10 hours in the saddle! )

    But anyway, as I was driving in the car yesterday with some time to think, this DNF is starting to eat at me. Am I the only one who is stupid enough to consider trying it again in a couple of weeks? or at least the section from Algona to Decorah?? Maybe the unfinished business will have to wait until next year's running. It will certainly keep the fire stoked!

    Thanks for putting on a great race and I hope you'll do it again next year! There were some great volunteers, sponsors, and we had an excellent host family. It was great riding with and meeting all of you. In reference to the BikeIowa thread some of you may or may not have seen today, I'm not too worried about the prize money difference between the P/1/2's and the 4/5's. Keep it cheap, simple, and most importantly - fun! Roadies anyway!! Ha!

    Brent

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    No riding through pig farms!!! please...I can still taste that funk in my mouth from just riding by all of them..maybe I need listerine..hmm. Glad to hear you turned up Mike after we parted at Osage, hope ya heal quick.

    Did anyone else see(or hear) the meteor in the NorthEast sky right around 2am Sunday morning. Man! at first I thought I'd lost my marbles(but then realized I didn't have any to begin with) But sightings of it have been mentioned up here in MB too....either way, it was pretty cool to see at the time.

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    I Saw It

    Quote Originally Posted by PaddyH
    No riding through pig farms!!! please...I can still taste that funk in my mouth from just riding by all of them..maybe I need listerine..hmm. Glad to hear you turned up Mike after we parted at Osage, hope ya heal quick.

    Did anyone else see(or hear) the meteor in the NorthEast sky right around 2am Sunday morning. Man! at first I thought I'd lost my marbles(but then realized I didn't have any to begin with) But sightings of it have been mentioned up here in MB too....either way, it was pretty cool to see at the time.

    Joe and I saw it but it lasted so long I thought it was fireworks. Then I thought I was hallucinating. Cool!

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    Quote Originally Posted by redsnakebite
    Joe and I saw it but it lasted so long I thought it was fireworks. Then I thought I was hallucinating. Cool!
    I told you that things was a shooting star!

    I think that makes the score Joe: 2, Brett: 0

    (Do I need to remind you about the gnome...?)

    Joe

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    You're NOT the only one.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fish Hunter
    Great race, guys! I had fun at my first "mountain bike" race, even though I was one of those who pulled out at Algona. Got there at 6:15. I knew it would be close all day, as that was faster than what I had planned on riding at for the first 100 miles. Once I left Emmetsburg, I knew it wasn't looking good to make Algona in time, and the fresh gravel sealed it. When I made it to the checkpoint and was told the deadline was extended to 7, my mind had finished the race even though the body still felt good (or at least as good as it can after 10 hours in the saddle! )

    But anyway, as I was driving in the car yesterday with some time to think, this DNF is starting to eat at me. Am I the only one who is stupid enough to consider trying it again in a couple of weeks? or at least the section from Algona to Decorah?? Maybe the unfinished business will have to wait until next year's running. It will certainly keep the fire stoked!

    Thanks for putting on a great race and I hope you'll do it again next year! There were some great volunteers, sponsors, and we had an excellent host family. It was great riding with and meeting all of you. In reference to the BikeIowa thread some of you may or may not have seen today, I'm not too worried about the prize money difference between the P/1/2's and the 4/5's. Keep it cheap, simple, and most importantly - fun! Roadies anyway!! Ha!

    Brent
    I have been beating the hell of out myself for having not been a better boy scout at the race so I could have been ready for the overnight wind and temps. I called my support crew, JK the picture man, at 6pm and said, "Stand for a moment of silence, please." He said, "Screw that. You still have an hour." I made to Algona and then thought I should pull the plug. Next year cannot come soon enough. Two weeks?? Sounds good to me.

    Skip

  34. #34
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    Thanks Jeff and Mark for putting on a great race. Thanks to the sponsors for all the schwag and goodies. The best $20 I ever spent. Even though I only made it to Emmetsburg.

    Getting a DNF does suck , I would go ride the rest of the course tomorrow if I had the chance. I can't wait to see what you throw at us next year.

    Special thanks to Emily from Nebraska and Steve from Bluegrass. I wouldn't have even made it as far as I did without someone else to suffer with.

    I didn't get his name, but did the one legged biker ever make it to Algona? We were stopped between Primghar and Emmetsburg to fuel, and this guy came down the road doing one legged repeats. I guess he hurt his knee a ways back. Crazy.

    Anyways, can't wait to meet more of you next year.
    thanks again
    Dave

  35. #35
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    Gnome Pincher

    Hey guys! One of you rode past me in Cresco with a gnome in tow. Show yourself!
    Just was curious who it was, as I can't remember. Being up all night can do that to you!

    As far as the "one legged man" goes, I remember one of the support crew at Algona was very concerned for the rider they were waiting for, and told me he was injured. Apparently, he was so upset, he wouldn't tell her where he was. Later, some friends, that had DNF'ed at Primghar came by and said that they had spotted a rider way off course near Algona. I assumed that it was this same fellow, and alerted the young lady. I never did hear the outcome of it all. Any one else know?
    Riden' an Smilin'
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    The One Legged Man - A Trans Iowa Legend!

    I wish I had more time and creativity - this could make a really good story to tell from year to year, getting better each time it's told. But, I am short on both, so I'll tell what I know of what actually happened....

    I believe the person everyone is referring to is Rick Beason? Racer #5 from Lincoln, NE. We rode together pretty much from the start to the first B road. He launched a water bottle, so I kept going, thinking he'd catch back up any time, but the next time I saw him, he was hobbling along on foot at Algona. He said that not too long after that mud road, the effects of pushing too big a gear caught up to him and he blew a knee. He did pedal one legged for some time, then had his support come get him - I don't know where, though. He's a super nice guy and I'm glad I had the chance to meet him and ride with him - I hope he has a speedy recovery and we see him out there next year.

    Now, we can keep that just between us girls if there is anyone who would like to come up with a version that can be told at next year's pre-race meal!

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Guitar Ted
    Hey guys! One of you rode past me in Cresco with a gnome in tow. Show yourself!
    Just was curious who it was, as I can't remember. Being up all night can do that to you!
    I did ride past you just outside of Cresco as you were standing outside a van. I didn't see the gnome, but it seemed suspicious.

  38. #38
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    Well, It wasn't you then.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fishtoes2000
    I did ride past you just outside of Cresco as you were standing outside a van. I didn't see the gnome, but it seemed suspicious.
    This rider had a gnome strapped to his rack! Said that he picked him up so I wouldn't have to. That was a nice thought! However; the gnomes were my little offering to the people of Northern Iowa, and I had no intentions of picking any of them up.

    Are you saying that my presence outside of a van on the outskirts of Cresco, Iowa from the hours of 3am. to 11am. seemed suspicious? Why, whatever would give you that idea?
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  39. #39
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    Here is one!

    We got one on film! They sure don't sit still too long. Rumor has it that one was seen working the counter at Hardee's in Forest City. Just picture a small Gnome serving greasy burgers and fries....Mmmmmmm!
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Gnomes

    I am the one who picked up the Gnome. I tried to leave it in Decorah at the finish, but that little bugger started chasing after our car as we drove away. I guess we bonded that last 50 miles. He must like riding with me or looking at my rear end.

    Anyway, I couldn't let that cute little guy run all the way to Cleveland, so we gave him a lift. The Gnome is now residing in Cleveland on the mantle of our home. I told my kids (5 and 2 year olds) it was Daddy's trophy for the race. They love the stubby guy like the little gnome brother they never had.

    -Brett

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    Trying It Again In A Couple Of Weeks

    Quote Originally Posted by Endurosnob
    I have been beating the hell of out myself for having not been a better boy scout at the race so I could have been ready for the overnight wind and temps. I called my support crew, JK the picture man, at 6pm and said, "Stand for a moment of silence, please." He said, "Screw that. You still have an hour." I made to Algona and then thought I should pull the plug. Next year cannot come soon enough. Two weeks?? Sounds good to me.

    Skip
    Glad to see that I am not the only one out there thinking about finishing that last segment to Decorah. My wife says I am obsessed with an insane notion, but I drive to work every day over a short segment of the route to Decorah and it has been eating at me that I missed out on the night ride. A blown knee forced me into that unhappy category of one legged rider for the last painful hour into Algona. Now that the knee feels better it seems a shame to let all that night ride training go to waste. So, the first full moon night with a westerly breeze may find me sauntering over to Algona about 6PM.

  42. #42
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    So, It was YOU!

    Quote Originally Posted by redsnakebite
    I am the one who picked up the Gnome. I tried to leave it in Decorah at the finish, but that little bugger started chasing after our car as we drove away. I guess we bonded that last 50 miles. He must like riding with me or looking at my rear end.

    Anyway, I couldn't let that cute little guy run all the way to Cleveland, so we gave him a lift. The Gnome is now residing in Cleveland on the mantle of our home. I told my kids (5 and 2 year olds) it was Daddy's trophy for the race. They love the stubby guy like the little gnome brother they never had.

    -Brett
    Ha! Looks like the little gnome found a good home!
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  43. #43
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    I would love to ride it too!

    Quote Originally Posted by jbkr54
    Glad to see that I am not the only one out there thinking about finishing that last segment to Decorah. My wife says I am obsessed with an insane notion, but I drive to work every day over a short segment of the route to Decorah and it has been eating at me that I missed out on the night ride. A blown knee forced me into that unhappy category of one legged rider for the last painful hour into Algona. Now that the knee feels better it seems a shame to let all that night ride training go to waste. So, the first full moon night with a westerly breeze may find me sauntering over to Algona about 6PM.
    I tried to get out and do it a few weeks before the event. Didn't even get out of Cresco before the chain jumped on the KM ss and roached all my driveside spokes! I'll be back, though!

    Hope your knee heals well! Sorry it ruined your race! We'll be givin' it a go again next year, so hope you can make it in!
    Riden' an Smilin'
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  44. #44
    What would Dangerado do?
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    Hey Brett, just wanted to say Hi and that it was a pleasure to ride and race with you out there on the rural roads of Iowa! Way to Finish!!

    Brian

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