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Fools Gold 100 - Dahlonega, Georgia

Posted by: Shannon Boffeli |September 23, 2012 3:48 PM
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Fools Gold 100 - Dahlonega, Georgia

Jeremiah Bishop and Cheryl Sornson take the Fool's Gold win and series titles in Georgia

written by: Ryan O’Dell

Part of the Post-Race Georgia style welcome back party included quality brews from Terrapin and Sweetwater 420.  



Bishop wins his first NUE Series Title

Jeremiah Bishop (Cannondale) won the Fool’s Gold 100 and his first ever NUE Series title on Saturday! With the best overall time of 6:42:09, Bishop was one of just five racers to go sub seven on the day. "It was a relief to cross the finish line in first today! I had no room for error since Christian Tanguy and I were tied coming into Fools Gold 100

Christian Tanguy was so strong at Shenandoah and I was not feeling fully recovered in the first fifty miles of today’s race so I was nervous when my early efforts did not seem to phase him.

I was pleased to see Ben Melt Swanepoel of South Africa animating at the front of the race because I thought it would take pressure off me to set pace. We caught him after his solo 16 mile escape. The group sat up a bit so he put some more pressure with 45 to go. I hatched a plan to bridge up and work with him on the rolling section about 30 miles to go. Christian pulled at the front for several minutes and as soon as he got frustrated i put in a full on attack.

Once I had the attack effort in my legs though I could not stop my cross country mode from kicking in, Sam Koerber who was sitting on briefly also bridged up and I knew this would be bad for Christian who is more a climber.

Swanepoel dropped off pace as we entered the bull run mountain section, I was going for it. Koerber and I traded pulls for 30 minutes and we bombed a couple trails, it was awesome shredding with him.

Then the trail pitched up and he dropped off as well. I was gunning for as much time as I could get and figured my after-burn might fizzle so i kept on the gas. I found I was able to hold the high pace for a while until I ran low on fuel from skipping the second to last aid station. I thought the rest of the 12 miles was just dirt road and figured it was best to just suck it up and keep on the hammer. six miles of twisted hill single track ensued I was lucky to bum a honey stinger waffle off a 50 mile racer. I kept pushing but the pace, and lack of fuel, made my legs feel heavy.

The new course was great, it was chock full of hours of spectacular single track. It was fun unless you’re in the lead and want to a fast road to a finish line!

Then, a near disaster, when a bad shift caused my chain to break! I was on the side of the trail trying to be calm imagining how I might lose the whole series when Christian passes me! My hands were shaking and luckily I was able to mend the chain with my Sram quick link in a couple minutes and took off like a shot.

I was really happy with using the flash for most of the NUE 100 races it was the first time a Hardtail has won the series in several years. I think because the save stays post I can use the Flash but not get as beat up. The 29r allows me to attack the climbs with no compromise. The only course I wished I had the Scalpel 29 at was Hampshire 100 since it was wicked rocky.

It’s exciting to see the NUE series grow and next year the competitions sure to get even tougher more tactical and the adventure even more wild.

NUE series champion, Christian Tanguy, (Team CF).

Evan Plews: "Fool's Gold 100 was another rough one for me. Despite being lazy all week and trying to rest I found myself missing my usual strength as we rode the initial climb.

I took the lead on the descent but mistook the corner marshal for a photographer as my glasses had been sprayed pretty bad so instead of leading into the single track I was about  ten spots back.

Unfortunately I never saw the front of the race again as I lost time following the slow folks and then lacked power to close.

I caught Drew after a bit and passed him only to fall heavily when I clipped some a six log that was poking out into the trail under some bushes. Luckily I wasn't out of the race but my ribs are likely fractured.

It took some time to get going and finally I re-passed Edsall about an hour later then a demoralized Tanguy after aid six. Christian was clearly better than I on the climbs but seemed uninterested in chasing. I took the initiative but he was able to rejoin me each time I slowed to pass lap riders and when the trail kicked up.

We heard that Sam Koerber was not far ahead and I told Chris that he looked good and it was money in the bank if he could put both of us away which he did as we caught Sam on the rode back to the venue.

I was flagging by that point and could only watch as they rode away.”


Women’s Open

Sornson reclaims the NUE Series Title!

2008 NUE Series Champion, Cheryl Sornson (Team CF) won the Fool’s Gold 100 back in 2008, coming in at 8:53:22 before going on to claim her first NUE Series Title. This year, with the NUE Series title on the line, she dropped it like it was hot, finishing 8:16:30, reclaiming the NUE Series title from Amanda Carey, (Kenda/Felt) who has held it firmly within her grasp since 2009!

"I had not planned on Fool's Gold until I captured my third win of the NUE series in New Hampshire.  I started the season with a great win at Cohutta, but then was plagued with bad luck flats in Arkansas.  Not wanting to let Arkansas define my season, I was ready to battle at Lumberjack, however I was sidelined with broken ribs.  I thought my bid for a series title was over. 

I had to pull my training together to plan on going for wins at W101 and New Hampshire.  It worked and I began to plan for Georgia.  It was stressful leading up to the race.  Trying to keep the balance of rest, training, and health is tough. I had a little set back a few days prior to the race and even considered pulling the plug.  Fortunately my husband convinced me that I could still put in a tough fight regardless.

I drove the eleven lonely hours to Georgia solo, but was welcomed to a familiar cabin in beautiful Dahlonega, GA.  I love this race venue.  It is in such a beautiful area and race directors, Namrita and Eddie, put on a great show.  They know the area very well and loop together a great race course.  I had forgotten how tough it can be with the relentless climbing, but then was pleasantly reminded at how fun and ripping the single track is.  The threat of rain for the day was a bit distressing, but I kept a positive attitude that it would all work out.  It did drizzle a bit in the morning which had us all a bit worried, but the rest of the day it was sunny, with only a couple of short showers. 

The race started out with a neutral roll out which helped provide a bit of warm up and get a feel for how the day would go. Once we were unleashed, Amanda and I picked up the pace.  I wanted to see how my legs felt, so I gladly took the lead.  She ended up staying on my wheel for most of the climb.  Once it started to pitch down she would jump in front and try to get away. 

I was not right on her wheel but was able to get right back to her when the road leveled out or went up.  At one down I did lose sight of her, but caught her again on the next climb.  We stayed together until SAG 2.  During that time she would attempt some attacks, but I was always able to be right there.  We got into the aid together, but I got a bit of a lead out and then never saw her again. I knew I was climbing stronger so I hammered out the climbs and stayed focused on the downs.

I got some word right before mile 40 that she was about five minutes back.  Still not wanting to take any chances I kept up a decent pace that I knew I could maintain and still have some left if she did catch back up and we needed to duke it out. About mile 60 or so, it was quite evident that I had a decent gap and, unless I had a mishap, I could take the win. I stayed consistent, but did not take any chances to get through the course.  Once on the road back to the winery, with no one in sight, I let off the gas and let the good feeling of my 2012 season sink in.

I want to give a big shout out to Team CF for supporting me this year.  Our specialized bikes and tires do magic out on the course, just love them.  Props to Gettysburg Bicycles for helping me get them race ready time and time again.   They are the best shop out there.  They have to be, they put up with me.  Thank you all.”

Amanda Carey (Kenda/Felt) finished second at 8:46:44, earning second place overall in the NUE Series. She had yet another amazing season where she won six races plus two second place finishes, both to Sornson.

The first time at the series opener, at the Cohutta 100 and finally, not far away, at the Fool’s Gold where all ties are decided. Coming into the race, Carey knew that Sornson was the only woman standing between her and a fourth straight NUE Series title.

Brenda Simril (Motor Mile Racing) attended nine races this year, finishing all but the Breckenridge 100, where altitude took its toll. Throughout the season, Simril has protected her position, holding on to finish the Fool’s Gold at 8:52:22, confirming her third place finish overall in the NUE Series.  

Andrea Wilson (Outdoors, Inc), opted for gears for the championship race, finishing just nine minutes behind Simril at 9:01:03 to finish fourth, just what she needed to finish fifth overall in the NUE Series, behind Vicki Barclay (Stan's NoTubes Elite Women's Team) who finished the season fourth overall among women.



Pfluginator removes all doubt with his fourth straight NUE Series Singlepeed Title

For Gerry Pflug (Salsa/Notubes/TOP Gear), the series was already in the bag, however, he showed up for a one hundred mile victory lap at the Fool’s Gold, winning in just 7:20:50 using 41x25 gearing.

Patrick Blair used a 32x18.

Dwayne Goscinski  used a 32x17

"At the beginning of the singlespeed race, Dwayne Goscinsky, Patrick Blair, and I were able to escape from the other SS racers on the long Cooper Gap climb. We were riding in the lead group of geared riders and were flying up the hill. I chose to stop at aid #1, about 18 miles into the race, to grab a camelbak. Nobody else in the lead group stopped, so Dwayne and Pat were able to put some time on me. In order to minimize my time loss, I bombed the 2.5 mile downhill to catch the two SS riders in front of me. I must have been flying because I caught the pair before the bottom of the descent. As we entered the trails, I took the lead and was able to get a slight lead. But, shortly after checkpoint two, Patrick caught me before heading up the Bull Mountain Trail. The initial part of this trail is super steep and was covered with big slick roots. I was able to create a gap over Pat on this section by riding the climb, since he was force to run it. After getting away from Pat, I never saw another SS rider and pretty much rode the last 70 miles alone. It was a great way to end the season and to celebrate my fourth NUE SS Title.”


Masters 50+

Root wins the race!

Sanborn gets his first NUE Series Masters Title!

Sanborn: 2012 NUE Masters Champion definitely has a nice ring to it! Quite honestly, I started planning this out while recovering from major rotator cuff surgery a year and half ago. So to finally have met this goal is very rewarding. What's also rewarding is being part of this series. There are so many great competitors I've met along the way and to toe the line and race with everybody is a honor. It's also been a riot to travel to some of these venues, each one seems to offer some their local flare of character, worthy of a story or two when we return home. I'd like to thank Jason and Christy Lowetz, owners of Einstein Cycles and all our local sponsors for all they do to make the Einstein Racing team happen. My wife, Janet Grimm, is very much apart of my success. She has been to all my NUE races except one and supported my racing since the beginning. I deeply appreciate all she does, thank you Janet! Last but not least, thanks to all that make the NUE series happen, your hard work doesn't go unnoticed.

Mark Hershberger (Team Jackson Hole/Hoback Sports) finished third in the NUE Series points race. "A year ago I decided to compete in the overall NUE Master's series knowing it would be the hardest series I had ever taken on.  Mountain bike racing began for me at age 50 after being "benched" from other sports with an injury and my learning curve has been steep - the training, nutrition, bike maintenance, etc…damn, Ron you made it look so easy!  I'm very happy with third overall considering the talent out there - my congratulations to Ron, Roger, Chris and Mark. I encourage others to take on the challenge of the overall NUE next year – it’s a great series with great sponsors.”

The top five NUE Division winners received a share of the $11,000 in cash prizes plus every NUE Series racer who completed the four race minimum received prizes from each of the NUE Series sponsors. Division Winners also receive complimentary entry into all NUE events in 2013 as part of their reward, a value of nearly $2000. A drawing will be held soon to determine the lucky NUE racer who will receive an all-expense paid trip (excluding airfare) to the 20thAnniversary La Ruta De Los Conquirstadores November 1-3 in Costa Rica. 3 days, 2 volcanoes, 2 oceans, Jungles and high mountain passes await the lucky winner of this raffle. www.adventurerace.comRacers earn one ticket for each win of the season.

Stay tuned here for the scoop, including race reports, complete results and photos!


Open Men

Jeremiah Bishop Cannondale 6:42:09
Ben Melt Swanepoel Squirt Lube 6:47:54
Christian Tanguy Team CF 6:56:20
Sam Koerber Industry nine/ niner bikes 6:56:21
Evan Plews MTBracenews 6:58:09
Drew Edsall Kenda / Felt 7:07:39
Josh Fix SGC p/b Breakaway Cycles 7:10:45
Chris Morgan BMC USA 7:32:22
Jonathan Davis Trek Bike Store Boulder Racing Team 7:36:13
Chris Peariso Adventure 212/Specialized 7:41:07
Ryan Krayer Adventure 212/Specialized 7:41:18
Zachary Morrey Blue Ridge Cyclery/NoTubes/Magura/Schwalbe 7:44:21
Brian Toone Tria Cycling p/b 7:45:15
Rob Spreng Dirty Harry's 7:48:11
Bruce Stauffer Cycle Works 8:02:31
Scott Schlapman Bicycles Etc 8:12:51
Daniel Kotwicki 8:14:10
Wilhelm Ritter Wilhelm Ritter 8:21:28
Luke Sagur Carolina Bicycle Company \ Total Cyclist 8:23:12
Gavin Lansden BBC p/b Wheelworx 8:34:53
Joe Hamner Faster Mustache 8:41:16
James Prentice Red Mountain Wheelmen 8:49:12
Travis Fowler First Victory 8:51:23
Jason Bewley Sunshine Cycles 8:51:36
Lee Simril Motor mile racing 8:52:24
Lee Carmichael Motor Mile Racing 8:57:08
Mike Simonson RBS MTB Team 9:00:16
Chris Slack Infinity Racing 9:00:36
Chris Adams RTO National 9:02:35
Eddie Lindley columbus bike racing, bikeshop of columbus 9:10:45
Jim Rivers Team Ed 9:12:15
Michael Livingston Wolverine Sport Club 9:21:32
Greg Witt RBS MTN Bike Team 9:39:28

Open Women

Cheryl Sornson Team CF 8:16:30
Amanda Carey Kenda/Felt 8:46:44
Brenda Simril Motor mile racing 8:52:22
Andrea Wilson Brickhouse Racing 9:01:03
Rachel Millsop University of West Georgia 9:30:22
Jana Morris Giordana-Clif Bar 10:44:50
Marcey Rader-Rhodenbaugh GoMarceyGo/GU Energy 12:23:56

Singlespeed Men

Gerry Pflug Salsa / Notubes / TOP Gear 7:20:50
Dwayne Goscinski Team Noah Foundation / DOGFISH 7:53:18
Shane Schreihart 7:54:17
Patrick Blair Adventures For the Cure 8:43:27
Mark Farnsworth FeBikes 9:45:50
Jeremy Morgan Twin Six 9:45:53
Brian Gillies PBJ 10:03:30
Michael Fitzgerald Tieam On On! 10:39:44

Men's 50+

Scott Root 8:51:34
Monte Hewett Challenge Partner David Woodbery 9:02:43
Henry McCullough POA Cycling 9:07:56
Mark Drogalis Team CF 9:11:12
Hardwick Gregg Mud, Guts and Glory 9:12:18
Chris Irving Los Locos 9:18:20
John Wyrick Team Brad/Biowheels 9:43:17
Stuart Rackley YABA 10:21:58
James Wilson Team CF 10:50:30
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