Posted by Editor on 07/30/99
Fourth Annual Kokanee 24 hours of Adrenalin
World Solo Championships - Canmore Alberta
The first World Solo 24 Hours of Adrenalin Championship was held July 17&18 with 30 men and 6 women competing for the title of King and Queen of endurance mountain biking. These athletes put on a display of perseverance and discipline, as did did 1284 team riders on hand to partake in the fourth annual Kokanee 24 Hours of Adrenalin mountain bike team relay, the "Woodstock of Mountain Biking."
The Canmore Nordic Centre, nestled in the Rocky Mountains on the edge of Banff National Park offered great singletrack, doubletrack, technical rooty sections and relentless power climbs. Due to severe weather conditions made the course epic, one that will not be forgotten. Riders and their bikes came in from their laps covered with several pounds of mud. Lightweight bikes, weather specific tires, brake pads and cables were no longer working in favor of the riders and bike mechanics found themselves working almost as hard as the riders to keep the bikes going. It did not snow during the World Solo 24 Hour Championships as it did for the World Cup held at the same venue just two weeks earlier but the temperatures dropped to low 30Ã¢â‚¬Å¡s (F), everything was wet and muddy and athletes rode for 24 hours in an unbelievable display of physical and mental strength and perseverance through hypothermic conditions.
Before the weather turned for the worse the sun was shining Saturday at noon for the LeMans start as the event began with the starting horn sounding and everyone was off running the 600 meter loop to their bikes before heading out onto the course while cheering and cow bells filled the air with noise and excitement. Looking across the crowd revealed a rider in a Santa suit behind Rishi Grewal (Klein) and a rider wearing sombrero carrying a pinyata behind John Stamstad (Chevy Trucks, Airborne).
In the midst of all the excitement in the expo area participants and spectators spotted Brett Wolfe and the level of cheering became so loud it was difficult to hear the person beside you. Who is Brett Wolfe? Brett was competing in the World Solo 24 Hour Championship, but one thing separates him from other riders. He has only one leg. Brett uses his situation to his advantage and pushes himself to the limits most people could not imagine. His efforts provided motivation and inspiration over the weekend for everyone on hand by finishing 18th, refusing to give up when the conditions forced him to hike many sections of the course. Brett took home the first Spirit of Adrenalin award. This award honors an individual who truly represented the attitude and spirit present at Adrenalin events across North America and mountain biking as a whole.
In the World Solo 24 Hours of Adrenalin Championships, Rishi Grewal dominated the menÃ¢â‚¬Å¡s solo field. With the 600 meter run LeMans start, a one mile prolog lap and a 12 mile course, he turned the fastest first lap (55:21) and continued to lead the race throughout the entire event. Chris Scott from Virginia never far behind took second early and never took his eyes off Rishi. Endurance mountain biking guru, John Stamstad finished third. At one point John starting making a move but the strength of Rishi and Chris Scott and with the conditions Stamstad could not pull it off. A pivotal moment occurred around 4:45am when Rishi lapped John. The rule of thumb in 24 hour racing has been once you have been lapped it is near impossible to come back. This is the same medicine John has dished out to so many solo riders and it was looking him in the face with everything on the line.
In the WomenÃ¢â‚¬Å¡s field, Chloe Lanthier who has dominated 24 hour racing for the past 2 years was tested by veteran racers such as Katie Lindquist, Amy Regan-Axelson and Kathy Burns. Younger women to compete were Monica Nelson and Heather Oswald. The women put on the best female 24 race in history and Chloe Lanthier took home the victory followed by Katie Lindquist (second) and Monica Nelson (third). "We were excited to have such a strong turn out and look forward to seeing more growth in the female solo field", commented Stuart Dorland, President and Founder of Trilife Sports International, event organizers.
Even with the weather conditions the spirits of riders were still intact and as the sun began to shine Sunday morning. The sun brought back the smiles that were present just 24 hours earlier in time to cheer for the winners of the first World Solo 24 Hours of Adrenalin Championship and the riders completing their final laps. The event winded down with the Post Race Pasta Party and awards got under way as everyone celebrated the great efforts put forth by all.
The World Solo 24 Hour Championship brought a great deal of attention to the Canmore Nordic Centre this year. A crew of 18 from OLN were filming, photographers were everywhere you looked and the first 24 hour webcast took place with a team of 10 people including writers, an editor and technical staff on hand posting over 175 stories and 282 photos and received over a half a million hits over the course of the event and days that followed. Many commented that they had never seen an event covered so well from every medium.
The 2000 World Solo 24 Hours of Adrenalin Championship will be held September 17 & 18 in Idyllwild, California. Tentative dates for the Canmore event in 2000 are July 22 & 23.
The team at Trilife Sports International would like to thank all the great participants at the venue and the many great sponsors on hand making the experience at the Kokanee 24 Hours of Adrenalin and the World Solo 24 Hours of Adrenalin Championships one that will stay in peoples minds for years to come. The archived webcast at www.24hoursofadrenalin.com contains all the juicy details.
Courtesy Chad Grenier - Communications Director Trilife Sports
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