Three Ontario riders take on the Tour Divide!- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Three Ontario riders take on the Tour Divide!

    The Tour Divide started this morning! Three Ontario racers are in the mix this year. MTBREC's very own Dave Stowe, along with Sarah Caylor and Ken Waring, have have decided to take on this difficult, self-supported, off-road race. Follow their progress here.

    The live tracker shows that both Ken and Sarah started this morning but for some reason Dave doesn't seem to have begun. Hope everything is okay with him.

    Go Ontario!

  2. #2
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    Very cool. I will follow throughout the coming weeks, and look forward to some stories when they return hopefully after successful finishes by all.

  3. #3
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    Wowee. Maybe when we're retired and baby monster is done high school... Looking forward to following their progress. Is Dave on his singlespeed? It kinda looks like Dave's SPOT got left at home!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nerdgirl View Post
    Is Dave on his singlespeed?
    Is Dave ever not on his singlespeed? If we know his gear ratio maybe we can figure out how many turns of the crank for the entire route! (assumes no coasting, but just for fun)

  5. #5
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    Not sure about Dave's set-up but I do know Sarah is riding singlespeed. Less is more on the tour divide (less to break) so I suspect Dave is doing the same.

  6. #6
    Warp speed, Mr. Sulu!
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    Actually, last I spoke to Sarah, she said she reluctantly decided to go 1 x 9 this time.

  7. #7
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    Just checked the tracker. Dave is off and is slightly behind Ken, but Sarah appears to have chicked both of them....
    Strava made me do it....

  8. #8
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    SC is riding a 1x9 setup, but she is doing it rigid.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by PolishExperiment View Post
    SC is riding a 1x9 setup, but she is doing it rigid.
    Yes, you guys are right. For some reason I was certain she was riding ss but now I'm not sure what gave me that idea.
    All three had incredible first days if I am reading the tracker correctly.

  10. #10
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    Good for them. I've ridden with Sarah and she's a monster rider.

    (Ridden with, means I watched her quickly ride away from me.:-) )

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    Just checked the tracker. Dave is off and is slightly behind Ken, but Sarah appears to have chicked both of them....
    Nearing the end of Day 4 & Miss Caylor is still chicking the boys

  12. #12
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    I am also following these 3 riders, although I only know Dave and Sarah. But I have to say that Sarah is blowing my mind. I know she is a great athlete, because I raced against her several times in SS category and always compare my 8 hour race times with hers. But to race for around 20 days in the wild, exposed to the elements and all the risks, while self supported, is a whole other level of awesome that I cannot even wrap my head around.

    Let's hope the three of them stay safe and strong.
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    And here I thought 7 day 800km adventure races were long!

    What an incredible accomplishment for these guys...particularly on rigid and/or SS

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    Sarah posted a fun video last night on facebook that she took while climbing a pass in Montana. She reported rain for the past four days but seemed in good spirits.
    According to the tracker, Dave and Sarah both camped in Seely Lake, Montana last night. This is 522 miles from Banff! Looks like Ken stopped to camp 11 miles before Seely Lake.
    All three riders are doing great; I can't believe how far they've come already.

  15. #15
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    Simply amazing!
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by serious View Post
    I am also following these 3 riders, although I only know Dave and Sarah. But I have to say that Sarah is blowing my mind. I know she is a great athlete, because I raced against her several times in SS category and always compare my 8 hour race times with hers. But to race for around 20 days in the wild, exposed to the elements and all the risks, while self supported, is a whole other level of awesome that I cannot even wrap my head around.

    Let's hope the three of them stay safe and strong.
    You'd probably recognize Ken if you saw him. He's an animal. He and Dave had a huge solo battle at Solstice a couple of years ago.
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  17. #17
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    Word is that Sarah had a bit of a rough couple of days and has dropped back a little but is still running second in the womens' division. Dave is apparently in second place in his category too.

    And yes, Ken is an absolute animal on a bike...
    Strava made me do it....

  18. #18
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    Unless there are categories of which I'm unaware, Dave's not in second. However, he, Ken and Sarah are all riding remarkably quickly on a tough route. In my mind, this is not a race against other people, so much as a personal experience in endurance and persistence. Of note, the woman currently leading is also riding third in singlespeed, right up there with the guys. Impressive. Neither Dave nor Ken has registered as SS, so I'm guessing they went geared. With long road sections, it does make sense.

    I'm proud to say I came second to Sarah once doing solo at Solstice and she told me I pushed her to keep going. She is crazy fast and strong. And all three of them are so nice. I'm rooting for them!

  19. #19
    Warp speed, Mr. Sulu!
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    Sarah had a second bout of hypothermia yesterday and stopped after 30 miles. Got an early start this morning and hopefully is in better shape today.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pucker Factor View Post
    Sarah had a second bout of hypothermia yesterday and stopped after 30 miles. Got an early start this morning and hopefully is in better shape today.
    Yikes. Riding all day every day in rainy conditions will do that to a person. I'd be done after one day! Positive vibes to Sarah.
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  21. #21
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    Just checked the site and Dave is 6th overall, Ken is 9th and Sarah sits in 2nd (women) Ontario certainly has some strong endurance athletes!!!!

  22. #22
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    Check today shows Dave at mile 1983, Sarah at 1821, and Ken at 1656. C'mon folks, bring it home! Must be an awful lot of thinking going on out there, even if just of the wandering mind sort.
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  23. #23
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    Ya, I've been following this semi-obsessively. At one point, Dave was in fifth overall (it's remarkably tight after first place, who is crushing it), but he seems to have slowed down in the past few days and is currently sitting tenth. Hopefully he isn't fighting any injuries or mechanicals (rigid, geared -what could go wrong? ).

    Sarah started crazy strong in first place women. After a couple of bouts with hypothermia, she dropped to second. She made a valiant effort to catch back up to the first place woman (a singlespeeder!) and rode with her for a few days. When they were together, they seemed to really be pushing each other. Eventually, Sarah had a proper rest rather that a few short hours, like the other woman, and fell back to second. The leading woman now seems to be riding with the second place singlespeeder and still not sleeping much. She's a machine! But Sarah keeps plugging along about a hundred miles back. Sarah seems slightly faster, but rests more.

    Ken is just plugging along in the top part of the field. Just like his 24 hour efforts. Strong, consistent stuff.

  24. #24
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    I have to admit that I'm not really following along with their standings, only with their progress toward completion. It's 4500km with 60,000m of cumulative elevation gain in a self-supported format. Isn't finishing kind of "winning", regardless of what other riders at the event are doing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nerdgirl View Post
    Ya, I've been following this semi-obsessively. At one point, Dave was in fifth overall (it's remarkably tight after first place, who is crushing it), but he seems to have slowed down in the past few days and is currently sitting tenth. Hopefully he isn't fighting any injuries or mechanicals (rigid, geared -what could go wrong? ).

    Sarah started crazy strong in first place women. After a couple of bouts with hypothermia, she dropped to second. She made a valiant effort to catch back up to the first place woman (a singlespeeder!) and rode with her for a few days. When they were together, they seemed to really be pushing each other. Eventually, Sarah had a proper rest rather that a few short hours, like the other woman, and fell back to second. The leading woman now seems to be riding with the second place singlespeeder and still not sleeping much. She's a machine! But Sarah keeps plugging along about a hundred miles back. Sarah seems slightly faster, but rests more.

    Ken is just plugging along in the top part of the field. Just like his 24 hour efforts. Strong, consistent stuff.
    Nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Circlip View Post
    I have to admit that I'm not really following along with their standings, only with their progress toward completion. It's 4500km with 60,000m of cumulative elevation gain in a self-supported format. Isn't finishing kind of "winning", regardless of what other riders at the event are doing?
    Plan it, strap 40lbs of gear to your bike, ride the first day, spend that night in a bivy bag on the top of a mountain. If you get up and ride the next day you've done more 'epicness' than 99% of the people here do in their life and have won in my books. After that, it's just rubbing it in .
    Straight outta Rossland

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Circlip View Post
    I have to admit that I'm not really following along with their standings, only with their progress toward completion. It's 4500km with 60,000m of cumulative elevation gain in a self-supported format. Isn't finishing kind of "winning", regardless of what other riders at the event are doing?
    Oh, I totally agree. Note what I said a couple of weeks ago.
    Quote Originally Posted by Nerdgirl View Post
    In my mind, this is not a race against other people, so much as a personal experience in endurance and persistence.
    And yet, I can't seem to resist looking at the relative pace of different racers. Watching how little sleep many at the front are getting is a bit scary. I might be interested in doing the route (you know, maybe in retirement), but I'm definitely not interested in doing it in under a month - to do that, you have to ride non-stop and keep breaks and sleep to a minimum. No thanks! The one that was really interesting to watch was the tandem team (before their SPOT broke) - they seemed to get along with almost no sleep - maybe the stoker could grab quick naps? Now that (tandem riding) is something I have NO desire to do. It's also really interesting to see how riders start to ride together.

    Ken's been consistently close to a finish of 25 days, and Dave and Sarah are on track to meet their target finish times (21 and 23 days, respectively). Crazy folks.

    I've also noticed that the community is almost psycho about having no support. Racers have been declining favours people want to do them, because it violates this "rule". Meh.

  27. #27
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    Can't even conceive of doing a race like this. I did the toughest race I have ever done last weekend (Wilmington Whiteface 100). I can't even conceive of riding further and climbin higher than that every day for a month, with all my gear strapped on my bike, for almost a month. And how physically difficult that must be pales by comparison to how mentally tough it is.
    Strava made me do it....

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by CptSydor View Post
    Plan it, strap 40lbs of gear to your bike, ride the first day, spend that night in a bivy bag on the top of a mountain. If you get up and ride the next day you've done more 'epicness' than 99% of the people here do in their life and have won in my books. After that, it's just rubbing it in .
    Well said. It is far beyond the challenge of an 8 hour race or even a 24 hour race.
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  29. #29
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    Dave Stowe (our own dstowe) just finished! Congratulations!!! I think that means he beat his target time (21 days) by one day. He did almost 200 km per day! He ended up in tenth overall, for those who care.

    Sarah looks like she'll probably finish tomorrow (she's currently 145 miles from the border), which would mean she will finish two days ahead of her target time (which was 23 days)! Incidentally, the first placed woman just finished today, eleventh overall (five minutes behind Dave!) and third in singlespeed, by only a few hours. Sarah's a long way ahead of the rest of the women's field. I'd guess she'll be in the top 20 overall out of a field of 133 who started.

    Ken's about 370 miles from the border and has really picked up the pace in the last couple of days. He'll probably be done in an amazing 23-24 days.

    Unbelievable achievements by all! Can't wait to hear the stories.

  30. #30
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    Wow - Sarah just finished a couple of hours ago! Looks like she rode all night. Congratulations!!!

  31. #31
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    Sarah DID put in an all-night push to get there in 22 days and 21 hours...a 207 mile day!

    And she finished a very respectable 13th overall.

  32. #32
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    Straight outta Rossland

  33. #33
    Warp speed, Mr. Sulu!
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    Agreed!

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pucker Factor View Post
    Sarah DID put in an all-night push to get there in 22 days and 21 hours...a 207 mile day!
    Just when I thought it was hard core enough for them just to give this event a shot, Sarah one ups the scale in hard core-ness. Nuts. Very impressive, but still nuts! Congrats to all - including Ken probably coming up for his turn to finish pretty soon.
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  35. #35
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    Hello from Tucson,
    I finished! TD 2014 !
    I have to admit I came close to quitting twice (very close)
    I stared long and hard at a lot of dirt and gravel.
    Met some absolutely amazing people.
    See ya all back at home, I want to know what happened at Solstice.
    Cheers, Dave
    Cheers, Dave

  36. #36
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    Woo hoo!

    Quote Originally Posted by dskunk View Post
    Hello from Tucson,
    I finished! TD 2014 !
    I have to admit I came close to quitting twice (very close)
    I stared long and hard at a lot of dirt and gravel.
    Met some absolutely amazing people.
    See ya all back at home, I want to know what happened at Solstice.
    Cheers, Dave
    Nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by dskunk View Post
    Hello from Tucson,
    I finished! TD 2014 !
    I have to admit I came close to quitting twice (very close)
    I stared long and hard at a lot of dirt and gravel.
    Met some absolutely amazing people.
    See ya all back at home, I want to know what happened at Solstice.
    Cheers, Dave
    Straight outta Rossland

  38. #38
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    You are amazing Dave. I want to hear about your adventure! All three of you are superstars!

  39. #39
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    I have no words to say how awesome these three (and anyone who does this) are. "Wow" doesn't even come close...

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by dskunk View Post
    Hello from Tucson,
    I finished! TD 2014 !
    I have to admit I came close to quitting twice (very close)
    I stared long and hard at a lot of dirt and gravel.
    Met some absolutely amazing people.
    See ya all back at home, I want to know what happened at Solstice.
    Cheers, Dave
    Congratulations Dave. I followed you and had a hard time grasping the magnitude of your achievement. Still do. :-)
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  41. #41
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    Congrats to our locals.
    Here's an interview with the winner... but they're all winners. ; )

    Interview: Jefe Branham - Tour Divide Winner - Pinkbike

  42. #42
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    Looks like Ken finished about four days ago too. Congrats to all. A really incredible achievement. I don't believe you almost gave up, Dave. Not really...

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