100MoN Race Report #9: Liberty Park Division

06.8.2011 | 10:16 am

A Note from Fatty Regarding my New Superfly 100: I promised a ride report at the end of yesterday’s liveblog, and then totally failed to give one. That’s because by the time I finished riding, it was time to be a dad / husband for the rest of the day. Imagine that. So, short version:

  • I have been riding rigid single speeds for so long that a full suspension bike feels both huge and weird. I have some re-learning to do.
  • Downhill on a full-suspension bike is a true pleasure. I was hitting stuff I’d normally avoid, just because I could.
  • The new Shimano XTR is beyond unbelievable. It’s incredibly undeniably wonderfully good. The brakes are the best I have ever used, by a lot. The shifting is ridiculously good and fast and easy.
  • A bike that weighs 7 pounds more than what you’re used to riding feels different. And not just when you’re climbing.

Expect detailed impressions soon. I’m taking this bike out again today, I think. I hope.

A “Hey, we’re in the news!” Note from Fatty: Susie Wargin of 9News in Colorado did an awesome writeup of Philip Snyder and Sara Whatmore’s 100 Miles of Nowhere. Read it here! Also, Susie is a fundraising powerhouse in her own right; she’s raised $18,000 (and is looking to raise $20,000) in the Courage Classic for The Children’s Hospital. To help her reach her goal, visit her Rider Page.

100 Miles of Nowhere: Liberty Park Division

Early on in 2011 my mother decided that she wanted to ride the Salt Lake Century as a fifty-something year old cancer survivor. However a few months into her training, she was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time.

This meant that she would be in the middle of her treatments during the ride, and would not be able to do it.

A few short days after her diagnoses I was visiting Fatty’s Blog and he had just announced the registration dates for 100 Miles of Nowhere. My first instinct was that only a crazy person would ride 100 Miles and go nowhere, but my second thought was that I should be one of those crazy people and do this ride in honor of my mom.


I picked Liberty Park in Salt Lake City as my official ride location; the outside loop of the park runs a little over a mile, which meant lots and lots of laps.

When race day arrived I woke up early in hopes of beating the traffic as Saturdays at the park can get really busy, I started my ride at 6:05am and made the rookie mistake of thinking that since the weather man said it would be 80 degrees I would be good to go in just my shorts and jersey, and let’s just say it took until about 8:30 for things to finally start warming up.

Lap number who knows.jpg

By 10:00 I had made it over half way through my 100 miles and was feeling strong. As I came around on yet another lap, I was greeted by waves and cheers from my mom and dad. It was a great motivator to have my mom there for a big chunk of the day as I was riding in her honor.

One of the best things about riding 100 Miles of Nowhere is that it was easy for friends and family to come by and show support because they knew it would just be a few minutes until I was coming back around the park (thanks everyone who came out).

worlds best support crew.jpg

I was even joined for part of the ride by my wife and son, who spent the entire day hanging out at the park and cheering me on.

The last 20 miles of nowhere were definitely a struggle, the combination of having ridden 80+ miles and the traffic at the park picking up, were really starting to get to me.

Lucky for me on the last 10 miles my wife and son were right there at the curb cheering me on every time I came around for yet another lap, and I was able to finish strong with a total of 101.1 miles!

Tre' joing the cause.jpg

Of course by “finish strong” I mean “lay down on the grass for a while and wonder if my backside would ever feel the same.”


– Paul A

PS from Fatty: After finishing his own 100 Miles of Nowhere, Paul and his family drove down to Alpine, where I got a chance to meet him in real life. He’s a great guy with a great family. Here’s us, both looking just a tiiiiiinnnny bit tired.



  1. Comment by Clydesteve | 06.8.2011 | 10:39 am

    great write-up, Paul!

  2. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 06.8.2011 | 10:49 am

    This is tough! I may not get the laundry, the bathroom, or the floors done today either.
    Fatty, please use your AWESOME powers, and get us some videofeed on Denver. I could not find anything on their site, and they’re a tv station.

    Well done Paul. All our thoughts go out to your mom, and everyone Fighting the FIGHT.

  3. Comment by Maggi | 06.8.2011 | 10:50 am

    Congratulations, Paul! Good write-up. I love getting to see all the pics of people who have done 100MoN.

    Best wishes to your Mom in her treatment and recovery. KICK CANCER’S BUTT!

  4. Comment by MattC | 06.8.2011 | 10:53 am

    I tip my hat (helmet) to you Paul….doing 100 laps is just crazy…but that’s the nature of this event. Well documented too! (one thing about us Fatties, we LUV to see pictures!) WELL DONE!

  5. Comment by MattC | 06.8.2011 | 10:59 am

    And Fatty, I think the hardest part for me (when I switched from a hardtail to a FS about 5 years ago) was to STAY SEATED on the downhills. Your instincts will tell you to stand up, but that weight shift changes your suspension. I’m much better now at staying seated, but stil stand up when the hits get bigger of course. ENJOY the cush on the tush, and welcome to the SOFT side! As a side benefit, you can go WAY faster over rougher terrain than a hardtail…it’s just a fact. I expect great things from you this year in Leadville!

  6. Comment by Liz | 06.8.2011 | 11:55 am

    Congrats to you Paul, and all good wishes to your mother! Hope she’s back on the bike and doing the century real soon.

  7. Comment by Bryan (not that one) | 06.8.2011 | 12:00 pm

    Good job, Paul! I’m sure it was very encouraging to get those cheers every lap.

  8. Comment by Mark J. | 06.8.2011 | 12:19 pm

    Great job Paul. Way to finish strong. I LOVE it when kids ride along. My boy is only 3 but hopefully next year he can join me for a part of it.

  9. Comment by Aceemom | 06.8.2011 | 2:32 pm

    As Paul’s mother this means a lot to me. Thanks Paul!I am very proud of you and hopefully I can join you next year. Thanks for all the well wishes. Cancer sucks!

  10. Comment by stuckinmypedals | 06.8.2011 | 2:39 pm

    Way to go, Paul, and keep fighting, Aceemom! We’re with you.

  11. Comment by Edie | 06.8.2011 | 2:44 pm

    @Aceemom It’s obvious where your son gets his strength. We’d all love to read the write-up of your race next year.

  12. Comment by lynn e | 06.8.2011 | 4:19 pm

    crazy is as crazy does.

  13. Comment by Dan in Sac | 06.8.2011 | 5:25 pm

    All done in the true spirit of 100 MoN. Congratulations.

  14. Comment by Kevin | 06.8.2011 | 5:58 pm

    Best wishes to your mom! And what a great son you are.

    I think my finish was very similar to yours. haha

    PS: I think you should have given Fatty a milk crate to stand on.

  15. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 06.8.2011 | 7:03 pm

    Fatty doesn’t need a milk crate… that’s what curbs are for. Oh!… he was on the curb? I’ll bring a crate to Davis. (I could bring a ramp, then it would be adjustable for all friends of Fatty) This picture would have rocked with Fatty on Paul’s shoulder, but that needed to be done BEFORE 100MoN.

  16. Comment by Roses | 06.9.2011 | 7:53 am

    I love a strong finish. Congrats.


Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.