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Freedom 50 & Never Forget 100 - San Diego, CA

Posted by: Jens Raz |September 23, 2012 3:45 PM
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Freedom 50 & Never Forget 100 - San Diego, CA by Jens Raz

The second annual race located in sunny California ‘s San Diego went off beautifully for the 192 racers. The course covered some of the same trails as 2011 race there were new additions to keep ones wandering mind at ease for either the 50 mile version or the doubled 100 mile beat down.

 Hot temperatures spiking in triple digit heat did not cause any injuries and all racers finished within the official cut off times.  While fighting the elements Racers and Chasers went through 100 bags of ice and over 300 Gallons of water!!

 The sponsor list was equally as impressive:

Gnar lube - raffle and tons of swag!
ESI Grips - raffle and swag
Spy Eyewear - raffle and swag
Rockstar Energy Drink - 15 cases
Hammer Nutrition - nutrition products for racers
Zumwalts Bicycle Center - neutral support aid stations 1+4
Sekis Cycles - neutral support aid stations 2+3
Halo headbands - Raffle and support
Shoebacca - Worlds largest shoe
Cyclist Massage - 5 massage girls
Loaded USA
O-Tus safe sounds
Trek Super Stores
The Bike Shop Temecula
Chasing Norman - Band
Big Red - catered food

 The 100 mile race option, a potential for next years NUE series, went off 10 minutes before the 50 mile racers.  Bryan Taylor of Zumwalt’s had this to say:

 Guy Sutton (Cal-Coast) led the pack up the first climb and down the fun raptor ridge single-track. We traded pulls along the north shore of Lake Hodges and managed to open a small gap on a chase group of 5 or 6 riders including David Sullivan (Sho-air) and single-speeder/Zumwalt’s teammate Aaron Hauck. I had been concerned about the single-track section down the west side of Hodges, fun riding but you need to be expecting oncoming traffic. Our only close call was meeting 2 riders on a sharp corner, although fortunately there was no contact. We descended from the dam then headed into the climbing section of the lap - the 2 fun, tight switchbacks, the steep fire road to join the lusardi loop, and then the single-track climb onto Artesian road. Guy and I rode these climbs together and seemed to be steadily increasing our lead. 

As we were preparing to leave the asphalt and descend the switchbacks, I had a problem with my chain and had to stop leaving Guy to pull away. I finally got the chain back on though. It continued jumping until I managed to get to the next aid station where I knew I could get help from Seki cycles. Thanks to Rico for solving the problem! By now David and Aaron had passed through so I was now down to 4th place. While I kept trying to remind myself there was still a long way to go, I knew I had 3 strong riders ahead and had to start closing the gap. I passed Aaron on the climb up to Del Dios, then pushed hard around Lake Hodges, managing to move into 2nd as David stopped at the final aid station on lap 1, and reaching Guy as we approached the turn-around point.

 We headed out on lap 2 as it was beginning to get hot, however I was still feeling good so continued at the same effort and managed to pull into the lead as we headed back out into the rush of 50 milers completing their race. I rode the climbs as fast as I dared in the heat knowing that if I slowed Guy or David would likely close very quickly. I kept fueling with a various Hammer Nutrition products (HEED, Endurolytes and bars) trying to ward off any signs of cramping, and managed to struggle over the final climb on Raptor ridge to finish just outside my target time of 6 ˝ hours.

 Big thanks to Seki cycles and team sponsor Zumwalt’s Bicycle Center for providing support to all the riders. Special thanks to my wife’s parents who baby-sat our two youngsters (and gave us bottles on course) allowing both Monica and I to take part in this race. Good job again by Robert Hebert and all the Racers & Chasers team on a well-organized and successful event.

 Never Forget 100

Pro Men

 1. Bryan Taylor            - Zumwalt Cycles - 6:31:33

2. Guy Sutton               - Cal Coast Cyclery - 6: 40:19

3. Martin Adamczyk   - Revolution Cycles - DNF


Almost as if a repeat of last year, the shorter in length, but brutally fast "Freedom 50” was dominated by the Cytomax/KHS team. The duo Sean Donavan and Hal Helbock time-trialed away together until the end, while last years winner Chuck Jenkins also of the Cytomax/KHS team succumbed to 2 flat tires and had to run the last 2 miles for 3rd place.

The women’s division albeit small, was dominated by Leslie Peterson. The Trek Sponsored XTerra athlete was fast enough to have placed in the top 3 of the men’s race!

Freedom 50 results


1. Sean Donovan   - KHS/Cytomax Team - 3:19:21

2. Hal Helbock      - KHS/Cytomax Team - 3:24:09

3. Charles Jenkins  - KHS/Cytomax Team- 3:37:12


1. Lesley Peterson - Trek - 3:25:03

2. Mary Collier      Siren Cycles – 9:17:47












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