2009 Letters of Intent

Deanna Adams

To whomever this may be of interest:

I may be a fool. I may be a dreamer. I may be the 20year old vegan-eating cursed with Epilepsy moron who knows nothing. But I wonder is it possible to complete the whole Great Divide Route on a fixie? Fixie riders have started to pave the way, and I hope to soon become one of the mystical dreamers to join the quest. What is life without extreme risk, and challenge? I cannot wait to meet the other brave dreamers at the start on June 12 2009. Dare to fail...dare to dream...doubt kills dreams. Coming from the Grand Canyon State See you June 12 2009

—Deanna Adams

Rick Ashton

This old man from the flatlands of Florida does hereby commit to line up for the start of TD on June 12th. I hope this body can hold up until the start and not add anymore physical issues for me to deal with. Once the race starts, I will enjoy every pedal stroke because of the pain relieving scenery that we will be immersed in. I may not be as fast anymore but I am steady and when you young guys keep looking back and see someone still there every day, it will be the guy from Tallahassee.

Trevor Browne

(as written by candlelight, deep in a northern Canadian cave)

I, Trevor "Bear" Browne, would like to come out of hibernation and commit myself to joining the Tour Divide starting line in Banff, AB, on June 12, 2009.

Originally born deep in the Canadian Rockies as a bear cub, I was reared on berries, squirrels and the odd skier. Now as a much hairier and wiser bear living in Quebec, it is time to return to my homeland and roam the Great Divide wilds again. I feel a great honor in representing my fellow Canadian bear brethren in such an endeavor by trekking all the way from my home to Mexico on two wheels and dream.

If you have ever wondered what a smiling bear looks like, imagine a snapshot of me as I ramble into Antelope Wells. Now i just need to find pedals big enough for these damn paws...

Trevor "Bear" Browne

Cadet Bryant

I'm going to do my best at keeping my point of view simple and level-headed for 2,709 miles . . . . Each time I dismount the bike to gorge myself with a heap calories for the trail ahead, I'm going to remember what the prophet Isaiah wrote in Chapter 22, verse 13, of his good book:  "Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we shall die!"  This Tour Divide attempt is for Cannondale rider Matthew Lee who told me to come back this year and show up at the start with an empty head and a hungry heart.  "Hey Matthew Lee, I'm there!" And, this is for the awesome folks at Ellsworth who have resuscitated me.  They jumpstarted brand-spankin' new life into me by simply saying, "Hey dude, welcome to the fam!"  And Dear Mom, I promise not to pet any bears or mountain lions along the way.


Cricket Butler

To Whom It May Concern -

I will be at the starting line in Banff on June 12, 2009! My intentions are simple - To pedal all the way to the Mexican Border and live to tell about it with a giant smile on my face!

Count Me In!


Per Nilsson Eklof


Would like to declare my intent to start in this years Tour Divide. Stumbled on to the GDR website about a year and a half ago and have been tempted ever since. Will be my first adventure of this scale so not planning to be set the trail on fire with my speed! The aim is to finish and anything around 25 days would be great. Need to finish tinkering with the Karate Monkey now to get it ready so will see you all on the 12th!


John Fettis

Dear Chiefs,

Please count me in. I intend be on the start line in Banff 2009 for this grandest of tours. Flights are booked and I’ve told too many people already, no backing out now. Must have a shot at this while age and health are still on my side (just). As someone who’s raced road and mtb on and off for 20+ years I can honestly say this is off the scale of anything I’ve got into before. Just hope the slow burn endurance engine will kick-in after a few days on the trail.

I look forward to riding all day, every day for 3 wks or so, enjoying the whole journey. I hope my love of riding bikes will remain undiminished after so many back to back 16+ hour days. I don’t look forward to the saddles sores, tendinitis, back ache, numb hands or the mosquitoes I expect to encounter on route, but hey, whatever it takes.

Many thanks to my fantastic family for putting up with my selfish pursuit of this dream, to my bosses for allowing me the time off work (still ok I hope?), the British Divide vets for their advice and especially the great people behind the GDMBR trail and the pioneers of Great Divide racing for the inspiration.

See you in Banff for the grand depart!


Paul Howard

Dear all, After lots of logistical uncertainty, and even more prevarication, the final pieces of the jigsaw have now come together and I have no more excuses not to declare my intent to participate in the Tour Divide 2009, so count me in. Actually, the serious racers among you can probably then count me out of the action at the front of the peloton, as I’m more likely to be racing my shadow and the onset of winter than the other riders. However, if anybody else is as slow as me and would be kind enough to arrive in Antelope Wells shortly after I have – five minutes will suffice – then I would be very grateful as it will save me the ignominy of telling my children I came last (again). Still, finishing will be sufficient satisfaction in itself to make the ride worthwhile, so I’ll see you all in Banff in June. What time does it start again?

—Paul Howard

Jacob P Johnsrud

I am in. I am not computer savvy, more of a historical relic born in a time far past the years I was meant to exist. I bike, I eat, I sleep, I repeat. I wish to enter this race knowing full well that it is a race not intended for the weak bodied, weak minded, or weak spirited. Finishing is expected to be a combination of desire and good fortune; I have desire, and can only hope the good fortune will follow. If this e-mail thingy does not make it to whomever it is supposed to get to, I will be there anyway.

Jeff Kerby

I'm In.

—Jeff Kerby

Justin Kline

I would like to state my intentions to compete in this years Tour Divide. Through working at Princeton Tec I have had the opportunity to sponsor & work with endurance cycling greats like Matthew Lee, Jay Petervary, and Pete Basinger. Following their accomplishments along the Tour Divide/Great Divide race over the past few years has drawn me into the race, the route, and all things Great Divide. I can no longer resist my urge to participate so I will be on the starting line in Banff come June. I do not intend to challenge the masters of the divide, but rather follow in their dust. I will be out there to challenge myself, take in the majestic scenery, and experience all that the grand tour of mountain biking has to offer.

So I will see you all in Banff for a pre-race Kokanee, and hopefully in Antelope Wells for a celebratory Negra Modelo. Only time will tell what may happen in between…

Vivé le Tour!

—Justin Kline

Michael Komp

Please accept my intent to be at the start of the 2009 TD in Banff, AB, and also please accept my intent to be at the finish of the 2009 TD in Antelope Well, NM. June is coming up fast and there is so much ebay bidding to do. Looking forward to meeting everyone. Until then, good luck and see you all soon.

—Michael Komp
Cleveland, Ohio 

Matthew Lee

Dear Diary,

I tried to put my fever for Divide racing to bed in `08. It has been hard to do. The huge `09 field and depth of competition is too much to abstain from. At real cost and sacrifice by my family, I'm back again; to see the new Flathead Valley section, to suffer the brutiful rhythms, to feel grand tour sensations once more. This is my vice.

Love always,

Brad Mattingly

It's my intent to show up in Banff for the June 12 start of the Tour Divide. I plan on suffering, endurance, a little fun, and leaving it all out there. I'm a techincal rock climber that is drawn to adventure and this event looks like it will have plenty. In September I rode the New Mexico section to experience what it would be like. Look forward to the experience,long summer days, and miles of scenic beauty.

—Brad Mattingly
Flagstaff, Arizona

Steve McGuire

Images are demanding, mile after mile; so you ride year after year, knowing better why you go from one point on a map to another on your bicycle.  The “do it yourself” aesthetic that results always seems to beget: sore ass, bugs in throat at sunset, sunburn, shorts disintegrating before the eyes from not bathing for 10 days, and, the question “what the hell was I thinking?” I love that question! It was butt-ass cold and clear the on the morning of the first day of March in Iowa, grinding a gravel century of loopy hills with the answer to the latest installment of that question: see you in Banff.

Joseph Meiser

It is my intent to be on the start line on the 12th with partners in crime and camraderie. It is my intent to finish this event at the southern border of the United States of America.

Blaine Nester

Please add my name to the 09 start list. I live in Invermere, British Columbia. Looking forward to the awesome scenery and hope this old bag of bones holds up to Antelope Wells.

Jeremy Noble

I, Jeremy Noble (hailing from the proud and once independent Republic of Rough & Ready, California) hereby declare my intention to ride as fast as I can along the designated Divide route from Banff to Antelope Wells. I have an as of yet incurable condition called MTB-itis and hope this adventure satiates it (temporarily, at least). Riding cross-country (USA) on dirt will fulfill a lifelong yearning. Riding from before dawn till after dark.....bring it on! Furthermore, henceforth I respectfully request to be referred to by the alias "Trucker". In conclusion, I humbly recognize the magnitude of this undertaking and do not underestimate the ass-whipping I will receive. But I will finish.

Jeremy "Trucker" Noble

Matt Thourot

My declaration of intent: I plan to be at the start of the 2009 Tour Divide Race on June 12, 2009. I plan on finishing the Tour Divide on July 1, 2009. I have to be done because I will have no more vacation left. I have to be done because my wife will hate me if I do not meet her in Antelope Wells on that day. I have to be done because my son will miss me while I am gone. And finally I have to be done because it is there and it has to be done.

Yours truly,

Matt “Diesel” Thourot

Steve Wilkinson

Dear TD Management,

It is with respect that I, Steve 'Wilko' Wilkinson, hailing from Newcastle in the UK, hereby declare my intent to line-up in Banff on June 12th for the Tour Divide 2009. A veteran of one Banff to Antelope Wells ride, the desire to be back out on the Route, submersed in the life of a Divide Racer, has not left me.

I will leave all trace of self-pity and pride back home in England. I will bring with me a Gentleman's Agreement and honor, which I shall carry every inch of the way to Mexico. I will learn to suffer on a higher level, but show only British resolve. And with humility I will accept the kindness of strangers to whom I cannot ever repay.

I shall endeavor to pass up on the comfort of clean motel room sheets, and healing warm showers, and push on past, late into the night for a trailside camp. I shall seek to find a neutral gear for my mind, and leave contemplation and philosophy for different times. The dark side will not be let in, nor will I dream all day of wearing soft running shoes, sitting in a comfortable chair, and holding only a TV remote.

To Mexico, to friendships made, and adventures shared.



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