High Cascades 100 – Bend, Oregon

Local Superstars Serena Bishop-Gordon and Christopher Jones Win High Cascades Presented by Hammer Nutrition

By Ryan O’Dell

At 5:30AM, Racer’s gathered at Bachelor Village, near Mt. Bachelor in Bend, Oregon in anticipation of one of the most popular races in the NUE Race Series. The town of Bend is a growing destination for mountain bikers thanks to hundreds of miles of primo singletrack trails that can be accessed directly from downtown connecting to other nearby towns including the town of Sisters.

The Eighth Annual High Cascades 100 marked the midway point of the fourteen race National Ultra Endurance MTB Race Series where NUE series hopefuls had just one final opportunity to lead their respective divisions earning a mid-season travel award to compete in NUE #12, Rincon Challenge, the first NUE race held outside of the USA near Liberia, Costa Rica.

Deschutes Brewery, www.deschutesbrewery.com, one of the top rated craft breweries in the US, was on site at the finish line serving up draft brews including Pinedrops IPA and Hopslice, a new refreshing seasonal session IPA. Sagebrush Cycles of Bend, www.sagebrushcycles.net, in addition to offering mechanical services on the race course at every aid station, also offered racers a place to ship their bikes that included getting the bikes race ready and inspected before the race.

Race winner Serena Bishop-Gordon. Photo by: Michael Anderson Images

Race winner Serena Bishop-Gordon. Photo by: Michael Anderson Images

Women’s Open

Gordon makes it two in a row at HC100!

Serena Bishop Gordon, LIV|Giant Co-Factory Team, the local favorite from Bend, crushed the field for a second straight year by nearly an hour to finish 9:08:14.

Jennifer Shultz, Balance Point Racing/TREK/Fresh Air, from Kelowna, BC was next at 10:07:21. Five minutes later, Emily Kachorek, Squid, from Sacremento took third at 10:12:21. Twenty-three minutes later, Amber Bethe, 9:ZERO:7, rolled into fourth.

The youngest woman to ever finish an NUE race at the age of 16, Susannah Hart, Hapi-Go, now 19, moved up to fifth at10:54:14, more than a half hour faster than last year. Susannah’s favorite part of the race course is the climb out of Lava Lake, one of the most difficult climbs in the race.

Overall in the NUE Race Series point standings, Becky Edmiston, Crazy Pedaler Bicycles, leads all women.

Men’s Open

Jones gets his first HC100 win!

With a winning time of 7:53:44, Christopher Jones, the local favorite from Bend, achieved his first win at HC100 with a time that was less than three minutes short of the record set by Barry Wicks, Kona, in 2016. “Winning the High Cascade 100 was a pleasant surprise. I’m a roadie to the core, including my dismal dirt handling skills, but, as luck would have it, sand and my cyclocross skills made the difference on Saturday. The two riders I was with dismounted on a sandy climb about twenty miles into the HC100. I was able to remount quickly and ride away, a move I learned from racing cyclocross in the dunes of Kokjside.

From there it was a six hour ride enjoying some of the best trails my home town, Bend, has to offer. The local trail building organization, COTA, has done a fantastic job building and maintaining the local trails including the new Catch and Release trail that was included in the HC100 for the first time. Thanks to the Mike the Mudslinger, and NUE crews, for putting on such a great race.”

Fastest man on course Chris Jones rallies at High Cascades. Photo by: Michael Anderson Images

Fastest man on course Chris Jones rallies at High Cascades. Photo by: Michael Anderson Images

Less than four minutes behind the leader, a multi time winner of the HC100, Cary Smith, The Hub/VFuel, from Jackson, WY came in at 7:57:23 placing second.

Clint Muhlfield, Sportsman Ski Haus Cycling Team, from Whitefish, Montana was third at 8:22:46. “The High Cascade 100 is by far my favorite 100-mile MTB race. It’s a super fun point-to-point course that has it all: fast and flowy single-track, technical rocky (lava) zones, steep climbs, and power sections.

I’ve done this race several times, and it requires steady pace and not going out super hard at the beginning, saving some gas in the tank for the last thirty miles. Also, it gets hot out there and it’s a long time in the saddle, often in no man’s land, so I tried to focus on the moment, concentrating on the next corner ahead, and keeping the pace high. I had a good race with no technical issues, and, for a Dad with a demanding job, I’m very happy with my podium finish at a national event.”

Less than five minutes later, Erik Bee, The Bike Hub Spokane/For The Veterans of the U.S., from claimed fourth in 8:27:09. Seven minutes later, John ShalekBriski, US Military Endurance Sports, also from Spokane, WA claimed the fifth spot at 8:34:01.

Overall in the NUE Race Series point standings, Anthony Grinnell, Napleton Elite Cycling pwrd by Dirty Harrys, leads the Men’s Open Division.

Single Speed Open

Mills gets his first NUE win at High Cascades!

Steven Mills from Redding, CA held on to get this first win of the season following a third place finish at True Grit Epic and a sixth place finish at the Bailey Hundo. Mills winning time was 8:27:56. “Pedal, Pedal, Pedal the High Cascade 100 was a fun day on the bike. The race started off good. “Just Ride” is what Mike Ripley said and that’s all you can do or else it’s no fun so I stuck with it on race morning. Don’t try racing, just ride at your own pace and you will do well, so I just started pedaling down the trail.

I had decided to wear a camel back for the whole race so I had everything that I needed, water, a bunch of GU, and stuff to repair the bike if it breaks down. I also thought it would be easier to drink water hands free and focus on riding the trail. It worked great and saved my back when I crashed after clipping a log, flying and landing on my back. What I didn’t realize, until I had to refill, was that the lid had broken into pieces and was leaking. I thought wow, so I asked for some duct tape to tape the plastic lid back together so I wouldn’t lose water down the trail. Then, a dude had an extra camel pack so I took the lid off it. He said “What are you waiting for, GO!” so off I went.

For the majority of the race, I was riding back and forth with the fourth place finisher, Ricketts. We had a great time shredding the trails, trying to reel in the next racer, but I ended up alone toward the finish down the road. The 34-19 gearing is not too quick for the road so my legs where spinning. I got dizzy spinning and just rode to the finish line thinking what a great day at the High Cascade 100. I can’t wait to go ride the grizzly 100 in a few weeks! YeeHaaaw!”

2016 HC100 winner, Ben Shaklee, Jack’s Bicycle Center/Homegrown Racing, from Bellingham, WA arrived ten minutes later to finish second at 8:37:14. “I entered the first fire road climb with two other SS riders, Steven and Mark, and a few geared guys. I wasn’t exactly sure on the position of our group, but estimated we were in the top 10-15. I was the first of our group into Tiddlywinks singletrack just before Aid 1 and put maybe thirty seconds on the others but stopped to relieve myself and they passed.

I jumped back on with Steven and Mark ahead; passed Mark in the rocks and never saw him again (he was running 32×18). I bypassed Aid 1 and was spinning my 34×19 well on the fire roads, maybe a little more smoothly than Steven Mills (34×19).  I caught Steven and a couple geared guys, including Jay ShaleBriski. Jay and I worked together, gapped off the others, and wound up riding with or near each other for much of the day.

Jay blew through Aid 2 but I stopped for water. I passed him back as he was stopped trailside on the singletrack loop between Aid 2 and 3. A fast feed stop at Aid 3 and I was into the techie stuff descending to Lava Lake. At Aid 4 (mile 70) I was told I was in fourth overall and four minutes behind the leaders – I was pumped and resolved to ride steadily and smart for a linear effort to the finish.

This fell apart when I took a wrong turn crossing the fire road just above Aid 4, rather than climb over a log into the Edison Lava trail. I went out and back about 6 miles total and was off course for just over twenty minutes. Jay, who came through Aid 4 about one minute behind me, made the same mistake and we met on the fire road before getting back on course. I kept discouragement at bay and, once back on course, I passed back a few of the places I lost, but had no intel on where any SS riders were.

I crossed the line at 8:37:15 for second SS and ninth overall, about ten minutes behind Steven Mills. I was hoping to beat my 2015 time of 8:21 on this same course, and was on track to do so before my 20-minute detour despite slower course conditions this year. I felt good the entire ride and am pleased with the results. I thank, race director, Mike Ripley and his crew for another great HC100, and extend congratulations to Steve Mills for a great ride!”

Nine minutes later, Mark Schafer, Team Eastside, from Boise, ID took third at 8:56:34. Regis Ricketts, Iron City Bikes/Super Relax, was seven minutes back of Schafer for fourth at 9:03:34.

Seven minutes later, Kip Biese, KJBikeCoaching/Big Wheel Racing/Old Town Bike Shop, from Colorado Springs placed fifth at 9:10:35. Biese leads the NUE Race Series in the SS division with six finishes, including three second place finishes.

Masters 50+ Open

Golet crushes the field, getting his third straight NUE win!

Following wins at the True Grit Epic and Bailey Hundo, Greg Golet, Team Chico, was the only sub nine in the Masters division getting the win in just 8:42:59. Golet is undefeated this season and leads the NUE Race Series.

“At High Cascades the course has endless cornering, mostly around trees through the woods. In many sections you can’t see very far ahead, have to really focus, and be ready to react quickly. Constantly changing lighting, as you ride in and out of the shade, adds to the challenge. The trail surface is mostly smooth dirt and sand close to town, interspersed with occasional roots and rocks. Farther out, where the trail sees less traffic, it is more encroached with manzanita, and there’s a lot of loose and welded lava rock.

All this means you’re not going to do well unless you can ride varied singletrack really smoothly and efficiently. This point was really driven home for me last year. Even with 10,000 feet of overall vertical elevation, there just isn’t enough sustained climbing to do well simply by crushing the climbs. I tried that and it didn’t work. Also, unless you are a ripping descender, ideally with local knowledge of the trails (like my main competitor), you’re not going to gain much on anyone by saving energy until the second half of the race—my usual strategy.

So my plan was to eek the most out of every section of trail and get a big lead by Dutchman (mile 57), before the descent to lava lake. When I rode through there I was feeling pretty good, but didn’t really know my standing in the race. I knew I was ahead of Wayne Tonning (2015 Masters champ), who I passed early on, but definitely wasn’t ready to relax, knowing that there was a lot of race left. As it turned out, I was leading at that point, but only about two minutes ahead of Wayne!

Not wanting to flat, I rode pretty conservatively through the lava, checking my speed through blind corners, but still trying to push it where I could. I didn’t have any crashes or mechanicals there or anywhere else all day, and my nutrition was fine. I had energy to push hard through the last steeps and my decent to town was nicely uneventful. After finishing, I was feeling glad about my new “smarter” race strategy, but then I learned that my time was only twelve seconds ahead of last year, when I felt like I had played it all wrong!”

Wayne Tonning, Trinity Bikes, from Lake Oswego, OR placed second at 9:18:45. “Greg Golet, the winner, is a stud. I beat Greg last year and he took it to me this year. I tried to stay with Greg out of the gate, immediately red-lined, and still could not go with him. I ended up paying the price by riding sloppy; going over my handle bars twice, and had nothing the last twenty miles. I also flatted twice and had to run the bike into an aid for a new tire (sidewall cut) but persevered to finish and held onto second. That is what 100 milers are all about – digging deep and not quitting. What an incredibly competitive race, so many studs, and yet, really nice people. Gotta love the mountain bike community.”

Nine minutes later, Tim Phillips, Broken Spoke, from Eagle, ID rolled in to take the third podium spot at 9:27:34. “I got a better than expected start and, soon after hitting dirt, Golet went by with authority, followed by Tonning at a bit slower pace. Both pulled away as I expected.

The race went as planned and I felt pretty good through the Skyliner Aid Station #2 at mile 42. The climb to Dutchman Aid #3 (mile 58) seemed to go on forever. I believe it is the hardest section of this course. I rode smooth and safe on the downhill from Dutchman to Aid #4 Lava Lake. This section has tire gashing lava, numerous rock drops, and has been known to ruin many a racer’s day. I pegged my anticipated split times within a couple of minutes all the way to Lava Lake. However, the climb out of Lava put me under.

I came into Aid #4 at Edison (mile 78) but my legs were somewhere else and the usual cramping culprit wasn’t to blame. In addition, this course tests your upper body like no other. Starting at about mile fifty, the back of my left arm was screaming with every corner and pull of the brake lever. Volunteers at Edison mentioned that I was five minutes behind another 50+ racer. That’s when the mind games kicked in, who is in front?

The final 22 miles were brutal as my upper body, legs, and feet were all toast. The super fun DH sections on Tiddlywinks and Storm King that I rode the day before weren’t quite the same. Despite turning the cranks as best I could, I ended up fifteen minutes off my projected split on the final thirty miles. I ran into Wayne Tonning at the finish to find out he had double flatted.

An inventory of the water and calories consumed revealed I took in about 65% of what I should have, the likely the cause of my demise. I always say these races come down to fitness, mental toughness, and refueling. I failed at the latter. Despite finishing more than forty minutes behind Golet and nine minutes back of Tonning, what a thrill to be standing on the podium with these guys at one of the best races in the country!”

Twenty-two minutes later, Sten Hertsens, Muleterro, from Bozeman, MT took fourth at 9:49:14. Fourteen minutes later, James Coats took fifth in a packed Masters field.

Next: NUE Race Series #8, Wilderness 101 in State College, PA on July 23

Click here for full results from High Cascades 100

High Cascades 100 – Full Results & Report

Barry Wicks Sprints for the Win at High Cascades as Serena Gordon Rules the Women’s Field

By Ryan O’Dell

 The Seventh Annual High Cascades 100 marked the midway point of the 14 race National Ultra Endurance MTB Race Series with yet another sold out NUE event. The HC100 begins at Bachelor Village, near Mt. Bachelor in Bend, Oregon. Bend has become a well-known mountain bike destination with hundreds of miles of singletrack trails connecting nearby towns.

Deschutes Brewery, one of the top rated micro brewerys in the US, was onsite at the finish line serving up draft brews including Twilight Ale and newly developed Pinedrops IPA. Sagebrush Cycles of Bend, in addition to offering mechanical services on the race course, also offered racers a place to ship their bikes that included getting the bike race ready and inspected before the race.

Serena Gordon stays focused while out front - Photo by Alan Brandt Photography

Serena Gordon stays focused while out front – Photo by Alan Brandt Photography

Women’s Open

Gordon Crushes HC100!

Serena Bishop Gordon, LIV/Giant Co-Factory Team, crushed the field by nearly an hour to finish 8:32:42. “Mike Ripley and the Mudslinger Events out-did themselves once again with great course design, amazing volunteers, and an after-party that made racers and their families want to hang out for hours.

Recent rains made for ideal trail conditions and I was excited for a long day of racing when we rolled out of the Athletic Club of Bend at 5:35am on Saturday. I tucked into the large group and drafted until we turned onto the dirt and started to climb. My goal was to ride within myself all day, keep to my fueling and hydration plan and to arrive at each aid station before any of my female competitors. Once we started climbing, I never saw another woman, and I never looked over my shoulder. Instead, I looked forward and tried to pick off the men in front of me, working to catch them one at a time.

I felt really strong on the climbs and tried to relax and recover on the descents. Breaking the race up into sections made all the difference; looking at the race as a whole would have been too overwhelming. It wasn’t until the Edison aid station (mile 80) that I started to feel the fatigue of a long day in the saddle. At this point, I just stayed focused and position – and set mini-goals.

I had told my coach, Brig Brandt, I wanted to finish in a time of 8:30. When I crossed the finish line and stopped my Garmin, it read 8:29. The official clock was at 8:32 – pretty darn close!”

Coming off a third place finish at the Mohican MTB100 in Ohio and fourth place at the Bailey Hundo in Colorado, Marlee Dixon, Pivot/Epic Brewing, took second to finish 9:21:33. Dixon is currently ranked fourth in the NUE point standings.

Julie Browning, CyclePath Racing, of Portland placed third at 9:31:45, winning the HC100 Vet 40+ Women’s Cat in the process. “This was my second 100 mile mountain bike race, my first one being HC100 the previous year. That first race was more about seeing whether I could finish in one piece. I finished just a hair under 10 hours and missed the Masters podium by a few seconds and thought, OK, I can do this again.

This year, I knew what I was getting myself into and was ready both mentally and physically to race, not just finish and made a few changes to my training and to my bike: dropper seat post, Racing Ralph Tires with snakeskin sidewalls (2.35 on the front and 2.25 on the rear) along with a Garmin to better gauge the time to the aid stations and the length of the climbs.

I started off conservatively, making the most of the flats and the downhills, but riding steady on any up hills. By aid station 3 (56 miles), I was feeling great and knew that there was a downhill section to look forward to. I was descending well (thanks to the dropper post and tires) and pushed it for over an hour on the swooping fun descent that took you right up to the next aid station at mile 70 before a tough climb.

My teammates had warned me about the Lava Lakes climb and I had built it up in my head as something that was totally un-rideable so I was pleasantly surprised when it wasn’t a sustained climb, but rather a stair stepped climb. It was still tough and required some walking though! I hit a few of the lava rocks a little hard and was so thankful my tires held up. Afterwards I heard that a bunch of riders weren’t so lucky and hobbled into aid station 5 with shredded tires.

After that final aid station at mile 80, I didn’t see anyone for quite some time which made me wonder if I was still on course! Then I caught up to another rider who told me he thought I was in third place overall. I had no idea! From there it was a race to the finish to hold onto that third place, which I did, crossing the finish line in 9:31:45. I loved the course and it suited me well. I’m amazed at how fast time flies when you are so focused (and having fun).

What made the race even more special was to have my family there supporting me in the aid stations and also a bunch of my Cyclepath team mates there racing and supporting. Everyone on the team had some personal victories that day. Good times and huge thanks to Mike and his crew for putting on such a great event and big thanks to the awesome mechanics at Cyclepath for keeping my bike running.”

Rebecca Rusch, Niner/Red Bull, placed fourth in 9:38:10. Rusch, known as “The Queen of Pain” among many recently published a book titled “Rusch to Glory” that features her exploits in the world of endurance racing. Her book is now available for just $20 at www.rebeccarusch.com.

The youngest woman to ever finish an NUE race at the age of 16, Susannah Hart, Hapi-Go, now 18, completed the race in11:26:09. “Susannah emerged from the race saying once again that her favorite part was the climb out of Lava Lake. According to her father, Brian Hart, “Favorite” was strangely absent from the choice words I heard from many of the other racers when we served them at the Edison aid station.”

Overall in the NUE Race Series point standings, Defending NUE Champion, Brenda Simril, Motor Mile Racing, leads the Women’s Open with back to back wins at Tatanka 100 and Bailey Hundo plus second place at the Mohican MTB100 and a third place at True Grit Epic.

Barry Wicks is shadowed by Josh Tostado - Photo by Alan Brandt Photography

Barry Wicks is shadowed by Josh Tostado – Photo by Alan Brandt Photography


Men’s Open

Wick’s wins in a sprint finish

Barry Wicks, Kona, finished first in a close race that came down to a sprint finish with the strong man from Colorado. Wick’s finished in 7:50:50, just seconds ahead of NUE contender Josh Tostado, Santa Cruz/Swiftwick, who rolled in six seconds back with dust flying at 7:50:56.

According to Tostado, “I just had a great race and enough at the end to catch Barry and ride strong for the last hour. It was fun to sprint it out at the end.” Next for Tostado are the Big Bear Grizzly 100 and the Pierrie’s Hole 100. Josh Oppenheimer, TruWhip Cycling, came in just five minutes behind Tostado for third place at 7:55:55.

Fifteen minutes later, Brent Pontius, Roosters/Biker’s Edge, took fourth at 8:10:54. Two minutes separated fourth and fifth place with Christopher Jones, United Healthcare Pro Cycling, finishing 8:17:11 ahead of Matt Woodruff, Kuhl/Salsa Cycles, at 8:19:50.

The youngest NUE race finisher ever at the age of just thirteen, Brian Hart Jr., Hapi-Go, now 15 years old improved his finish time by more than three hours in the Men’s open at 9:54:35. The future of NUE has arrived! Hart says he may also enter the Mohican MTB100 in 2016.

Overall in the NUE Race Series point standings, Keck Baker, Champsys/Cannondale P/b Battley, leads the Men’s Open Division with four completed races, including a win at True Grit Epic and second place at the Mohican MTB100.


Single Speed Open

Shaklee gets a decisive win at High Cascades!

Ben Shaklee, Jack’s Bicycle Center/Homegrown Racing, stepped up his game and had sixteen minutes to spare when it was all said and done finishing the race in 8:18:21, good enough for seventh overall. Last year, Shaklee finished third behind NUE’s top contender AJ Linnell, Fitzgerald’s Bicycle, and Jace Ives.

31 year old Jace Ives, Bear Creek Bicycle/Syntace/SQ Lab, from Ashland, OR who earned his first win at the HC100 last year with six minutes to spare finished 8:34:18. “I knew coming into this year’s race I was lacking fitness. Even though I crammed pretty well during June, taking April and May mostly off would no doubt slow my pace. Early on, before racers turned onto the first dirt road, I position myself in the front (planning to avoid the dust, which there was little to none this year). I maintained in a front group of ten for a bit, then began to slip off the back. Soon, Ben Shaklee said hello while passing, then bridged up to the front group. Two other SS riders came by. I came through Aid 1 shortly after the three SS riders, but could not catch up to them. At this point my legs began to feel like they would at mile eighty, sore and tense.

I continued on slowly, frustrated at slight inclines, and happy when I could coast. I thought it strange to feel this level of fatigue early on; I thought I was in a bit better shape. From Swampy to the top of Swede Ridge I was pretty much by myself. After riding through the masticated, debris strewn dirt road climb, I tuned onto the trail and felt my legs slowly release themselves of the icky heavy feeling. I caught up to two other SS riders and several geared riders while climbing to Dutchman. I passed a few more on Metolius Windigo before the aid near Lava Lake. My legs where feeling crazy better, but by that time I was already beginning to become overall quite tired.

Climbing up Edison Lava trail, after passing a couple guys, I pulled over for a whizz, and to my surprise I saw another rider pushing a hard pace up the steep loose terrain. It was Serena Bishop Gordon! I got going again and caught up, but I could hardly keep up with her on the climbs and descents. She is one helluva good descender. I made it through the lava rocks without injury or shredding a tire. While negotiating the loose rocky terrain, I remembered back to last year’s race, when, after finishing, I suggested to Race Director Mike Ripley to bring the loop back around Mt. Bachelor, the lava section. Well here it is back in the race, the lava. Fun, yes? What the hell was I thinking?!

I overcame Serena and another rider before Tiddlywinks trail. I proceeded down the more Funner than Funner trail at an efficient pace, floating some of the tables and doubles. I came out on the road by myself and continued for a few miles spinning alone. I saw Serena and a male rider were coming up fast. Great, I thought, I can jump in with them. I hear them coming, so I increase my pace, and check back, but before I could react I see the guy passing me, standing up and sprinting, dropping Serena and not even giving me a chance to catch on. That was selfish I thought (even though, I selfishly wanted a pull). Somehow, after ninety three miles of dusty, twisty, rocky, and rooty trail, these final miles on a nearly flat road seemed the most annoying and difficult for me. I work hard to pass peeps up and down the trail, then get dropped on a long flat road. Suck it up ya dope, I told myself, you chose this archaic bike.

I finished a couple minutes after the racers who passed on the road, but a long time after Ben Shaklee. He hammered. Even if I did not miss two months of training in the spring, I think keeping up with his pace would be uncomfortable and difficult. Overall, I was surprised how horrible my legs felt for the first third of the track and surprised that I caught back up to finish in second place. Once again, I was just stoked to play bikes in Bend for a hundred miles!”

Twenty minutes behind Ives, Tom Flynn, Pro Leisure, finished 8:54:07. Four minutes behind Flynn, Cole Anderson took the fifth spot at 8:58:00.

Overall in the NUE Race Series point standings, Peat Henry, Team Noah Foundation, leads the SS Class with 21 points over five completed races.


Masters 50+ Open

Tonning refuses to settle for second place in 2015!

Following a second place finish at the HC100 last year, Wayne Tonning, Multnomah Athletic Club, from Lake Oswego, OR managed to outlast last year’s winner to settle the score at 8:38:50.

Just four minutes behind Tonning, last year’s race winner and NUE Race Series Contender, 52-year-old Greg Golet, Team Chico, from Chico, CA finished in 8:42:30. After the race, Golet commented that he felt he really needed this win to contend for the NUE title and is now re-evaluating whether it is still possible for him to win the series. Golet gained his first victory this year at the Bailey Hundo but also has a second place finish at True Grit Epic.

2013 NUE Master’s Champion, Marland Whaley, Hammer Nutrition/Red Barn Bicycles, rolled in six minutes behind Golet to take third on the day at 8:48:58. “I’ve been somewhat scarce due to an injury to my left arm that forced me to pull from True Grit and Cohutta 100.  I went to Bailey and really enjoyed the race, but the last minute course change caused me to miscalculate my aid station support and left me running on fumes and getting my second camelback with only seven miles to go.

The HC 100 went somewhat better after dealing with some mechanical issues in the first thirty miles and a really big crash at speed just before Lava Lake that I thought, at first, was ending my day. After pulling branches out of my front wheel, I got back in pursuit moving up twenty places from Swampy to Lava. Coming into Lava, I made my last final mistake thinking I had enough in my camelback to get to Edison. There was a small crowd at the aid station so I decided to go for it. Much to my dismay, I took my last suck of fuel and hydration just 200 yards past the aid station.

Half way up the Lava Lakes climb, Greg Golet passed me back for second place when I was just trying to hang on and make it to Edison. After Edison, it took about two miles to get revived again and I was able to make a fast trip back to Bend.

This is the only other NUE race I will be doing this year because I’m off to Leadville next month. On a whim, I used a chance to visit my Dad and show my wife the Grand Canyon as an excuse to go to do the Barn Burner 104 qualifier. I didn’t expect much since it would be my third ultra-distance race in as many weeks but thought it would be fun. To my surprise, it was a day winning my class and earning a gold tier starting position with my finishing time. With this possibly being a once in a lifetime starting position for me, I decided to go for it.

So far, Bailey Hundo and the HC 100 have been training races without taper for me to prepare for Leadville. I’ve come into both races very fit but not really fast from building fatigue. I will taper for Leadville in two weeks and hopefully it will all come together as planned. Regardless of the outcome, it’s hard to watch some of my favorite races go by and I will be back soon.”

It was a close race for the four and five spots but Robert Wilson took fourth place by just six seconds at 9:38:05 ahead of David Caplan, Webcyclery, who finished in 9:38:11.


Next up for the NUE Race Series: Two unique races east and west.

EAST: Rock Solid-The rocky goodness of the Wilderness 101 in State College, PA.

WEST: The Big Bear Grizzly 100 in Big Bear, CA.

Click Here for full results from all categories