|Monica Sattler (L) and Paul LaCava (R) @ the finish|
With well over 40 people still out on course after Rich Wince, Mark Johnson, Paul LaCava, and Monika Sattler finished, it was thought by most that Trans Iowa V9 would be a record setter for finishers. I kept getting asked, "How many now?" after every rider, or group of riders would come in. It didn't take long to see that the old record from T.I.V3 was going to get smashed. That was 24 riders, by the way.
Matt Maxwell was next after about an hour past when LaCava and Sattler arrived. In between them I can't tell you how bone chillingly cold it got. 37°F and I ended up in the Barn for a bit there where I made the watch presentation to Rich Wince and had a couple of brats off the grill. Properly fueled, I went back to the finish line.
Right after Matt came in on his single speed there was a rapid fire arrival of riders. We had heard there was a rather large grouping of seven to eight riders all together and that they were not far behind Matt Maxwell. First was David Swanson, then our first two-time female finisher, Janna Vavre came in with Scott Bigelow and Paul Chapman. About 20 minutes later Charles Parsons came in solo, then our first U.K. finisher ever, Paul Errington who rolled in with single speeder Jay Barre. Paul's U.K. comrade, Vin Cox, didn't make it to the finish, but he did get to see the Iowa countryside again after being here once before on his round-the-world bicycle ride.
|A Super-Pumped Steve Fuller finishes T.I.V9|
It went on like this all morning. Then noon came and it was getting right hot by this point. The wind was up, but it didn't really matter anymore at this point. Riders were still trickling in past noon and right on up to a half an hour to the cut off. That's when three single speeders, John Walsh, Matt Jennings, and Matt Wills all came in abreast to shouts and claps from the bystanders.
Speaking of single speeders- Cristina Mihaescu finished on a Tomac 29"er set up as a single speed for our very first female single speed finish in a Trans Iowa. Cristina told me she had a good single speed adviser back home in two time single speed Trans Iowa finisher, Joe Partridge. Yep......I would say he knows a thing or three about getting it done at Trans Iowa on a single speed!
There were a few DNF's throughout the morning, which reminded us all that even though you might get close, it takes every mile to finish. Some got real, real close. Folks like Jim Cummins, Michael Lemberger, and a fellow that got within two miles before the 2pm cutoff time. Heartbreakingly close, but hey- those all are outstanding efforts on a really tough course. No shame at all in those valiant efforts, but I understand the sorrow of falling short, since I have done so at Dirty Kanza three times!
In the end, there were 36 finishers of Trans Iowa V9. The most of any T.I. We got a two time female finisher in Janna Vavre, a first time single speed finisher on the women's side in Cristina Mihaescu, and we had four female finishers out of the nine starters. There were tons of great efforts out there, from first timers, to veterans that went further than ever before, and even the past finishers had their fair share of near misses and great finishes.
Next: My final thoughts on Trans Iowa V9