One of the early highlights of last year’s race, for me, was the menu in the Four Corners café in Eureka which promised the ‘Dolly Parton’ breakfast – a whole host of carb and fat-rich food topped, perhaps unsurprisingly, with two fried eggs (it’s a visual gag). More than half of the field has now made it into the USand had the chance to enjoy the feast – and the joke – and clearly this has been beneficial for some.
Take a look at Blaine Nester – what did he have for breakfast? Rocket fuel? He posted a very respectable time last year, so it was something of a surprise to see him apparently languishing in mid-pack in the Flathead yesterday. Now, though, he’s in a clear fourth place and hot on the heels of one of the early pace-setters, Kevin Dean, who in turn is now some distance behind the lead duo of Eric Lobeck and Matthew Lee. Eric appears to have made up some ground on Matthew, though they’re either side of a decent climb at the moment which may foreshorten the distance between them.
The discrepancy with Blaine’s progress could of course be down to the sometimes temperamental functioning of the SPOT trackers the riders are wearing. They render a wonderful service to us spectators but can leave tantalising gaps in coverage (often due to operator error, sometimes due to tree cover etc…). Maybe Blainehad actually been further ahead – I haven’t had a chance to check the time of his SPOT updates to work it out.
Similarly, Christine Domecq has now made up some lost ground, though is still some way behind Cricket Butler (who’ll be being royally entertained thanks to her close proximity to Jacob Johnsrud and Stephen Huddle) and the increasingly impressive – and singlespeed-riding – Heather Dawe. Kent Peterson’s aspirations to regain the singlespeed record taken seem under considerable threat. Read more »
Submitted by wagonwheel on June 13, 2010 - 12:27am
Yesterday, I can announce with much pride that I, my wife and four children all travelled further than Matthew Lee. It did take the help of three trains and a short taxi ride for us to make it from north of Edinburgh to south of London, but such is Matthew Lee’s current rate of progress that I though it deserved a mention even with this large helping of mechanical assistance.
Anyway, it looks like Matthew is firmly ensconced at the head of the race, stopping just short of Whitefish last night. Eric Lobeck looks a considerable distance back, at Red Meadow Lakes, but is probably no more than three hours behind – possibly only two – as it’s a mainly downhill run to where Matthew is from there. It will be interesting to see if he can continue to keep on Matthew’s pace – in any other year he’d be in front right now, so he’s clearly got the bit between his teeth. Or, has even Matthew gone out too quickly? Is Eric pressuring him to keep going more than he’d like? Previous years demonstrate his preference for being out in front on his own.
Kevin Dean continues to go well and is the only other person to have already made it over the first major US climb. Slightly further back, Dave Blumenthal has a stiff climb first thing this morning, while the group of half a dozen at Eureka – including an impressive Heather Dawe – as well as those at the border will have a couple of hours warm-up first and would hope to be at or past Whitefish themselves tonight.