24 Hours of Moab '99
|Click on any of the images for a more detailed version.
Procrastination, truck loading, rush hour traffic, buffet dinner in Reno, automobile accidents, road work, and a time zone change were some of the reasons why we showed up at 8pm instead of noon on Friday the day before the race. (Will be flying to future events that are more than 10 hours away by car.)
The 24 Hours of Moab went from noon on 10/9/99 to noon on 10/10/99. It
involved a 15.2 mile lap with 1300ft of climbing with lots of sand and big
1st Lap:(1hr 37min not counting the run).
At the start of the quarter mile cross-country desert run to the bikes, I look to the left, right, and behind me and about a third of the people are either wearing bandanas or face masks. I knew I was in trouble since I wasn't wearing any dust protection. Ended up midpack in the run choking on dust. My ankle which was sprained two weeks earlier held up during the run. However, I spent the next two miles hacking up dust and getting passed by other team captains (pro, semi-pro, expert, and fellow sport riders). I was in the middle ring most of the lap, my front derailure cable frayed so I didn't have enough cable pull to make it to my big chain ring for the fast flat sections or the two-mile downhill at the end. After the lap, stopped at the Vail, Colorado bike repair booth and they swapped out my front derailure cable free of charge.
2nd Lap:(1hr 50min)
The moonless night came in on my 7:05pm start time. Those posted 'danger' sections during the day which were easy, were actually 'dangerous' at night. Hard finding the best lines if you're not familiar with the course. To make matters worse, a few miles into my night lap the NiteRider battery status LEDs were going down fast. I dropped my bar light to the 6W setting instead of 10W when I had 2 green bars left. My bar light died on me 10 miles into my night lap. Finished the remainder of the ride with my JetDesigns helmet light. Stopped at the NiteRider booth to get a loaner battery for the next lap.
3rd Lap:(1hr 40min)
Used my light for the first 2 miles. Saw a spectacular endo at a steep big rock section where only 14 people made it the previous day and which nobody made that morning. Finally got a feel for the course--where to downshift for the hill climbs and where the major sand patch locations were. Legs were a little tired but I actually did the majority of my passing this day.
Lonnie the Course Marshal
Besides racing, Lonnie had time to be a 5-minute volunteer course marshal (stop cars from driving down the course and shout encouragement to racers). That's a radio in one hand and a Guinness in the other.
Judy Riding to the Finish
Brent and His Jersey
|The Drive Home
The Mojave Desert isn't much to look at.
Notes for Next 24 Hour Race
- Bring bandana for runner (lots of dust during the run).
- Brent's turn to run 1/4 mile through dust for le mans start.
- Race with 5 riders in 5-person open class instead of 4.
- Everybody chips in for Jason's plane ticket so he can watch the fire at night
and cook or find someone else for the job.
- Everybody get more night riding practice in.
- Arrive a day earlier and allow enough time to preride once during the day and
once during the night.
- Don't leave ice cream in the cooler for several days.
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