|Chunky, loose, dusty gravel plagued riders all day at T.I.v14 Image by Jon Duke|
Well, one thing presented itself with regard to this course which I found particularly delicious. A mental snag which, if the rider was paying attention to the cue sheets, would be navigated through with no issues. I've been laser focused on having exact cues to follow since T.I.v7, and I know without a doubt that Trans Iowa cues are some of the best written in the business. So, the cues were correct at the spot that threw a wrench into many rider's day. Despite what some may have thought later......
Without getting into a detailed and boring dissection of the situation, suffice it to say that the "Left on 120th" was a pitfall many fell into Saturday. The cues read that you needed to "BR On Keokuk/Washington Rd." before you turned left on 120th. Because there were TWO LEFTS one could make on 120th, one which occurred BEFORE you bore right on Keokuk/Washington Road. That cue- BR On Keokuk/Washington Rd.- was of paramount importance. The mileages were spot on for these as well. So, if you did make the mistake of taking the first left, you ended up a mile down the road at a strange intersection. Now.....most riders figured the conundrum out at this point. They went back, found the correct left on 120th, and were good to go. But a few did not.....
|Kimberly Breuer (41) and Jeremy Fry on there way to Checkpoint #2 Image by Jon Duke|
|Headed out to CP#2 in search of the three chasers. That's Mathew Kutilek up ahead.|
Get the picture?
|In search of the three outlaws.|
|Level B Road just out of CP#2|
This wasn't the first time something like this happened, but it was a long time ago since the last time I was aware that it had. In fact, you have to go all the way back to T.I.v1 for that incident.
Back then, there was no one else out on the course but me. I was at the end of my rope, since, you know, staying up all night wasn't in my tool box at the time. I was having a really hard time at a "checkpoint" I set up just on the north side of Cresco, Iowa.
I was supposed to watch for the riders as they came through and warn the finish line volunteer for the Decorah Time Trials, whose finish line we were sharing. I saw Alex Dolpp go by, who was the leader, but when the finish was tallied up, Ira Ryan was first with Brian Hannon second and Alex Dolpp ended up third. What? Did I fall asleep and miss Hannon and Ryan? Well, about six months later I found Ira Ryan's race report and it became apparent that after getting off course in the middle of the night, Hannon and Ryan cut the course to get back on track, effectively leap frogging Dolpp in the process.
But it was what it was. If you cannot call the foul during the game, it is too late.
This time it wasn't too late. We knew Gleason, Zitz, and Tomasello hadn't suddenly put on the afterburners and made up an hour on Wilson. We also knew that they had not passed by the spot where we were watching. We couldn't watch every rider, but we were watching when the three riders that didn't go by us should have gone by us. There was nothing we could do but to confront them on the road and tell them they were DQ'ed.
|After having been DQ'ed, Tomasello, Zitz, and Gleason ride off into the night.|
|The Sun sets on Saturday of Trans Iowa v14.|
We still had an event happening and after this situation was dealt with we were left with a single rider with over an hour lead on then second place Mathew Kutilek. But there was 100 plus miles to go, a night and a morning of riding ahead, and anything could happen.
Next: The Cold, Lonely Call Of The Owl