Alchemist Summer Recap: Drew at Kokopelli, Lindsey to Kona, and more!

24 09 2018

It’s been a grand ole summer, folks.  Let me explain.  No, let me sum up.  Alchemist had another big season of racing and riding.  Need a smidge of toilet literature?   You’ve come to the right place.

Drew at the finish of the Kokopelli 140 MTB race. Broken rib, unbreakable spirit. You are a warrior, Drew. Read the write up below.

Alchemist tackles the Kokopelli 140.     Kokopelli is a fertility deity of the ancient Pueblo & southwest tribes. He is a humpback flute player & a trickster seen primarily at night in the waining moon. The Kokopelli trail was created in 1989 running between the iconic mountain bike towns of Fruita & Moab over 145 miles and 14,000 vertical feet of climbing. The route is partly single track but mostly rough jeep roads. There has been a unofficial, secret solo self supported race for years. The route is extremely difficult unsupported as there is virtually no water on the route for most of the year. The solo self supported record is held by Rebecca Rush who rode the course in 13:32. The Kokopelli 100 started a supported race last year with an abbreviated 100 mile event & this year extended it to the full 145 miles of the trail. I have wanted to ride the entire trail for years but the logistics conspired to make it no fun – until now. The race was set up with feed zones about every 20-30 miles. It starts at midnight and there are no course markings – navigation is part of the game. Around 100 riders entered but 30 had become wiser before the start with 70 showing up to ride. There are also several other simultaneous events going on – a 100 mile MTB, a relay, and a 100 mile ultra run. There was supposed to be an easy roll out for 5 miles on bike path before we hit the single track, and you all know what that means – race on full speed 45 seconds after midnight. I was “full gas”, just hanging on to the lead group. Five of us split off the front & were having the times of our life on the initial Fruita loops – Mary’s & Troy Built. Anyone who knows those loops knows some of it is on a cliff edge but of course we could not see any of that. I did not want to let this group go as we were working well together & mostly because of navigation. A couple of the riders knew the course & also had live GPS navigation. I kind of know the course & had a map on my phone – in my pack, hardly the same. It was pitch black out & there are hundreds of turns. It was well worth while to share light & route finding with a group. We reached the 2nd feed zone at 50 miles way ahead of our fastest predicted times. I decided to take my time & feed well but lost my group. My downfall is I don’t eat enough. Toni force fed me for 5 minutes & I was set to go, feeling great. Of course I promptly got a wee bit lost. It is very disorienting in the dark, in the desert and tired on top of it all. I reached a split & could not decide left or right. Eventually after a mile or so of floundering I got back on course. Pretty much everyone got lost for a bit that night. Dropping into the Colorado river at 70 miles, riding fast, alone, in the dark – smart. There was a two foot wide ditch. 29ers roll over everything right? Ouch! Picked up the pieces, checked the equipment – lights? both OK, wheels? All one piece, bike seems to work. Right 4th rib – pretty sure I used to have one & now I have two. Oh well, I hear those grow back. Still feeling strong & got going again. First light is always special on night rides. I rolled in to the Dewey Bridge feed on the Colorado river just at dawn. Toni again stuffed me with a burrito & a smoothy & I rolled out. I was feeling my best so far, moved up to 3rd place but this part of the course is wicked. It is really steep and if you like babyhead rocks on a sand surface it is your kind of ride. There is no shade & it was now 95 degrees. The next 3 climbs would take a combined 6 hours. I was hurting at 100 miles & totally cracked at 120. Everyone had to be hurting as well so I took a short 20 minute, lay down , loosing a couple sports, & then pushed on. I ultimately finished 5th overall in just over 16 hours. My goal was just a finish and I was thrilled with this. There were 15 total finishers in the 140 mile race & a few relay teams & 2 day racers finished as well. Two ultra runners finished the 100 mile run – the leader took 27 hours. This was a really great event! I would not want to mislead anyone & talk you into it next year. It is really, really, really hard. I suffered for hours. You will need to ride long, steep in the dark & in the heat while you navigate the course. If you are up for an adventure this is a good one. Have fun all! Drew Geer

Over 140 miles, I guess you have time to stop and take some photos. Nice shot, Drew.

Lindsey is back!  After a nutso Scapula fracture last year training for Kona, she has busted her ass to come all the way back, and is even stronger as she heads into the Ironman World Championships again.  Here she is in Austin, winning her division.  Keep an eye on her in Kona on Oct 13th.  The other competitors better keep an eye out too.  This kid is coming in hot!

 

Another Ironman Podium in Santa Fe.    More to come, Lindsey.

 

Alex C. taking the top spot at the Hundito this summer in the stacked singlespeed category. (BTW, any category I race in is by default stacked, which of course explains why I finish at the back of the pack.) Strong work, Alex!

Mike S. rockin the Alchemist skinsuit and a 2nd place finish at the Hygiene TT. Who knew those skinny legs could generate that much power?  Great job repping Alchemist on the road, Mike!

 

Bill H. riding with First Ascents at Leadville this year.  He went into it off the couch and got his belt buckle, and raised a ton of coin for young adults with cancer.  What’s more impressive? His girls ran the whole course with him in flip flops!

Bill’s write-up: Thanks for your support and for helping provide kids and young adults impacted by cancer with an epic outdoor experience, there is no better medicine!! The race went well two weekends ago and I was inspired by your generous donations. The day started ~5am with temps ~40f and just enough of light to prep for the day, make some oatmeal and begin to get psyched for the big “race”. In reality after training for only six weeks, I was just hoping to survive, and I did! At mile fifty, the half way point and the highest elevation of the race, my legs were cramping pretty badly, and I thought the day might be over. I was also on a 12hr+ pace, though I wasn’t really tracking this very closely. However, after resting for 10-15 minutes, eating and rehydrating at the aid station at 12,200 ft, I was ready to go again! Luckily, most of the next ten miles was down hill, and then I was treated to a very nice welcome at the First Descents support tent at the sixty mile mark. After more food and drink, and hugs and kisses from my kids, I was feeling very good about the next forty miles. Somehow I began to feel better and stronger as the miles flew by. I wasn’t paying much attention to the clock as I had very little expectations regarding a finish time, other than knowing a sub-twelve hour time would be nice. Again, somehow around the eleven hour mark, one of the racers, of the small group I was riding with, pointed out that we’d have a good chance of finishing before the twelve hour mark if we continued at our current pace. So, the race was “back” on! I felt inspired and began passing people (though I was probably passed by more than I passed) and made it to the edge of town at ~11:35 mark. I could begin to hear the crowd, that extended a couple miles back from the start/finish line and it really pumped me up. In order to snag a small belt buckle you have to finish in under twelve hours, a larger belt buckle for the under ten hour finishers. So, the crowd of course knew this and was cranking up the noise. Then with about one hundred meters to the finish line I heard my wife, Julie, say, “there he is” and my three daughters jumped in to run with me through the finish line, whoop whoop!! A great day all around and for a very worthy cause! Here is a link to some interesting stats on the day as well as some fun pics! https://www.athlinks.com/event/219291/results/Event/680196/Course/1090830/Bib/1135 Thanks again, and your support will make a difference in the lives of those that are most deserving. Best, Bill

Women’s MTB Day in Moab. Linda, Dice, Ryn.  You look mahvelous.

 

Brad F. showing off the Alchemist winter gear. Thermal jersey, mtb shorts, and Brad make for a sexy combo.

 

Tara dropping it like it’s hot at the Revolution Enduro.

 

Paul in the midst of Everesting Mount Sanitas. 29,000′ of gain. Something like 30 laps? Paul is a prime Alchemist ambassador across multiple sports, and reps Alchemist wherever he goes.  Check out his Van below.

 

This baby was turning heads (mostly because of the Alchemist magnet). Sadly, this Truvato was wrecked when a lady crossed the double yellow on the way to Sea Otter. But happily, Paul and Robin were okay. Also, they are getting a brand new van. Looks like I need to get them a brand new magnet.

 

Paul S. with Moonstomper sporting Alchemist Wool for the 280 mile Rockstar Dirt Tour. He was one of only 8 out of 40+ competitors to complete the course due to snow and subfreezing temps. I like to think the Wool jersey kept him from freezing his arse off.  Mad props, Paul.

 

Elliot L. shredding and representing.  Go, Elliot!

 

Linda L. takes after her daughter. Here she is in the UK doing some Alchemist product testing with Tim. Bad-ass.

Thanks to all who shared there photos and stories.  Folks, if you have Alchemist photos or news, don’t forget to send them my way.

 

 

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