When was your first Gravel Worlds?
I’m a total Gravel Worlds newbie. I’ve only been there once, this past year in 2017. I decided to start “racing” outside of the local races and take some trips to see some other areas. I had only heard great things about Gravel Worlds so I figured it would be a great time to get up there for it.
What was your biggest hurdle/most difficult challenge?
The last 25 miles of the 2017 race. I rode single speed that day. It was only the 2nd time I had done over 100 miles on a single speed. I had just started riding single speed in June of 2017. I geared down from what I was used to riding, but it wasn’t a far enough drop. After those first 125 miles my legs were shot. There was a lot of hill walking and pushing to just finish.
What was your highest Gravel Worlds moment?
At the checkpoint around mile 80 I was starting to feel the effects of climbing so much in one gear. The group of people at the checkpoint were awesome. Its always great getting encouragement, especially from people I don’t know. One of the volunteers at the checkpoint was a SS rider and she gave me some great encouragement and a high 5 when I rolled out of the checkpoint. That pushed me on to mile 125.
What is your favorite Gravel Worlds story?
After I finished the race I walked into the restaurant there and was greeted by some fellow Emporians. Tim & Kristi Mohn, Lyn Blubaugh and Paulina Batiz were all finishing up their meal and I was in need of something cold to drink. I just picked up their drinks (they were done right) and finished off each glass. Gravel tribe = family Those drinks tasted great after a hot day on the bike.
How did you feel when you finished?
I was toasted. I had nothing left in the tank. When I rolled in I was greeted by the same person who had encouraged me out of the checkpoint at mile 80. She was there cheering me in. That was cool. Even though it took me way to long, I felt accomplished finishing that course on a $300 single speed bike.
In one phrase what is Gravel Worlds to you?
Time to walk the plank, matey.