2011 leadville 100 Race Report: Part 3

08.17.2011 | 7:00 am

A Note from Fatty: This is Part 3 of my 2011 Leadville 100 Race Report. You can read Part 1 here, and Part 2 here.

I was stopped, straddling the top tube of my bike at the 90-mile aid station. I was drinking a Coke one friendly volunteer had just handed me, while another volunteer poured water over my head and down my back.

I had another Coke, and thought back to something LifeTime Fitness Owner Bahram Akradi had said at the pre-race meeting the day before: that, starting next year, aid stations would not have any foods with preservatives or food colorings.

Which, I guess, means I could say goodbye to the aid-station-provided Coke I was drinking. And goodbye to the chips everyone eats at the aid stations. And goodbye to the M&Ms everyone eats at the aid stations.

I have to admit, though: getting rid of these aid station staples is a really good idea. Except for the “good” part, I mean.

I had a third cup of Coke. Delicious.

I had not peed since I had left my hotel room more than eight hours ago, and had no urge to pee now. It’s entirely possible that I was a little bit dehydrated.

I Believe This Is Going to Happen

I looked at my GPS. 7:30 had come and gone since the start of this race. Traditionally, when I reach this 90-mile aid station, I’m just about one hour from the finish line. Ahead of me I had a little bit of climbing, a good-sized descent, and then two or so final miles of climbing before I got to the finish.

I couldn’t avoid the truth any longer. In the absence of a crash or monster mechanical, I was going to finish this race in under nine hours.

In fact, it was starting to look like I was going to get to the finish line in 8:30.

I got down St. Kevins — the last descent of the day — without trouble. People had talked about how this jeep road had been graded recently, but it didn’t feel much different to me going up earlier in the day, nor descending at the end of the race.

The ruts were gone. That’s about the only real change.

As I finished the descent, a woman I remembered passing earlier in the day — remembered her because she was wearing a Honey Stinger jersey and I had yelled “Honey Stinger Rules!” at her — caught up with me: Sari Anderson, champion endurance athlete and mom.

“I’m so frustrated,” she said. “I crashed yesterday and now I’m having a really bad day on the bike.”

Why do people keep telling me, as they ride alongside me, easily matching my speed on my best-ever-by-a-huge-margin day, that my absolute cycling apex is their worst day on a bike ever?

Don’t these people know how fragile my ego is?

Sari leads a small group (including me) across the railroad track that signals you’re almost done with the race. Photo courtesy Ian Anderson.

We stayed together, riding and talking as we approached the Boulevard, the two-or-so mile wide dirt road climb that blindsides pretty much everyone the first time they race the Leadville 100.

The End of a Fifteen Year Pursuit

Since I was feeling good and Sari’s with the Honey Stinger people, I figured I’d do her a favor and pull her up the Boulevard.

I gave it everything, no longer talking. I was breathing too hard, and had started repeating my personal cadence mantra to myself. “Up. Up. Up. Up.”

I say this to remind myself of two things:

  1. To use an upstroke and not be such a pedal masher.
  2. To go uphill.

It’s a very easy-to-remember mantra, and you’re welcome to use it, too.

I pulled Sari all the way to the top of the Boulevard. No, wait. I thought I was pulling her up the Boulevard. When I looked back at the top, it turns out I had given a free ride to someone else, who passed and shot ahead without even saying “thanks.”


I saw the red carpet, leading to the finish line. In the absence of a lightning strike, I was about to dispatch a 15-year bugaboo.

photo courtesy of Zazoosh

Well, that’s quite a smile, isn’t it? I’m sure it was just for a second, though.

photo courtesy of Zazoosh

Okay, I suppose it’s possible I didn’t stop grinning for the whole rest of the day. It’s possible, in fact, that I am still grinning right now.

I was feeling good. Feeling surreal. Feeling like I was Ferris Buehler.

8:18:01. Eight hours, eighteen minutes. Well ahead of that nine hour hobgoblin that has been living under my bed for the past fifteen years.

I gave Merilee — who has been race director as long as the race has existed and has always been at the finish line to give finishers their medals — a big hug and told her, “Fifteenth time is the charm, I guess.”

photo courtesy of Zazoosh

I then took off my helmet, at which point a careful observer might notice that the trail I had been on all day was just a smidgen dusty.

photo courtesy Ian Anderson

Then, as a responsible social media celebrity, I took a self-portrait with my phone and tweeted my accomplishment to the universe.


My quest for a sub-9 Leadville was — finally — at an end.

And you know what was some pretty fine icing on the cake? The fact that by doing so, I had just become the proud owner of a Specialized S-Works Stumpjumper 29er:


Don’t worry. Once I get it cleaned up, it’ll look just as pretty as ever.

I might leave that 555 on it for a while, though


Before long, friends and family started crossing the finish line. In fact, my friend Nickof the once and future Team Fatty for 24 Hours of Moab — finished four minutes ahead of me. Amazingly, he spent the entire day between three and eight minutes ahead of me; we saw each other only as he exited the Columbine Mine aid station and I was riding toward it.

Then The IT Guy’s boss, Dave, finished, just a few minutes behind me.

photo courtesy of Zazoosh

Like me, Dave has been chasing this sub-9 finish time for years. And like me, he got it this year, with time to spare. Unlike me, he brought a tank of Nitrogen to Leadville, to fill his tires. Which just goes to show, it’s totally possible to be more obsessed with this race than I am.

Kenny came in at 8:42. And that’s after dealing with a mechanical that would have ended my race (although I could argue that I don’t have mechanicals like that because I have the foresight to have an incredible mechanic — Racer — go over my bike with a fine-toothed comb before races).

My friend Bry celebrated turning 50 this year by doing the Leadville 100 on a singlespeed.

photo courtesy of Zazoosh

How hardcore is that?

And The Hammer? Well, I’ve been telling her lately that I no longer hold back at all when she and I ride together. So is it any surprise she finished her race in 9:39, knocking 31 minutes off her previous personal best?

photo courtesy of Zazoosh

How that happened is her story to tell (later this week I hope), but I will tell you this: we were – still are – just incredibly happy for each other.

photo courtesy of Zazoosh

And the next day, to cap it all off, I’d get this:


That thing’s 5.5″ wide by 4″ tall, by the way.

What Next?

So here’s the thing. The Hammer has now finished the Leadville 100 seven times. She wants to get her 1000 mile belt buckle. Which means we’re going back at least three more times.

But I’ve got a new quandary. Instead of thinking — as I have every year since I’ve started this race — “My objective will be to finish in under nine hours,” I need a new carrot.

Should I race with gears again and see if I can be faster? Aim for 8:10, maybe?

Or should I try the singlespeed again? See if I can finish in under nine hours without the help of gears?

Or should I make it my personal mission to get the IT Guy across the finish line in under twelve hours?

Or — and The Hammer and I have talked about this before, but until last night we never gave it much thought — should The Hammer and I invest in a tandem mountain bike and see how we do racing that way?

I’d be interested in your thoughts on this matter.

Post-Race Miscellany

There’s a lot about this race that doesn’t really fit into a story. Here are a few things knocking around in my head, in the order they occur to me:

  • This is not Rocky’s race: I mentioned in part 1 of this story that my brother-in-law Rocky entered this race. Well, a bad case of the barfs ended the race early for him. Some people are not meant to do endurance events. Rocky is the template for such people.
  • Quantify my experience: If you’d like to geek out to my GPS data from the race, you can find it here. My Garmin apparently always thinks it’s about 700 feet lower than it actually is, which really makes me want to take it to sea level.
  • Ridiculous speculation: If I had gotten this year’s finish time the first year I did this race (1997), I would have taken 15th place overall. In contrast, now an 8:18 got me 115th place. I think this may be because more people attend this race now.
  • Sweatshirts after all. Last week I vented my spleen about how angry it made me that there would be no personalized sweatshirts this year. Well, during the awards ceremony the race director surprised us by announcing there would be the personalized sweatshirts after all. Huzzah! I take full credit for this reversal, by the way.
  • Zazoosh did a great job. You’ve probably noticed that throughout this story, I’ve been putting up pictures provided to me by the official photographer of the event, Zazoosh. The thing is, I didn’t get any special treatment during this event, photography-wise. Zazoosh took great photos at key places on the course of everyone. Zazoosh did a great job at the Ogden Marathon, and they did a great job at Leadville. If I were to put on an event, you can bet they’d be who I reach out to. If you’d like to see photos Zazoosh took of folks, just click here and enter their race number. Like Kenny (55), Tyson Apostol (236), The Hammer (933), Tinker Juarez (16), or me (55). Or Todd Wells (3), if that’s your kind of thing.
  • I am remarkably inconsistent. To demonstrate how far I’ve come and how amazingly inconsistent I’ve been in terms of improvement, check out my finish times for previous years:


So. It was a long time coming, but there it was. A day where everything that could go right, did go right. And everything that could go wrong, didn’t.

Proof that, once in a while, the planets align and — if you’re ready for it — you can have the race of your life.


  1. Comment by TimRides | 08.17.2011 | 7:12 am

    Well done, Fatty! And as always, great race report. Yes, we want to hear The Hammer’s side of the story too.

  2. Comment by zachinacubicle | 08.17.2011 | 7:12 am

    Umm Next year sub eight! great job!

  3. Comment by Jenn | 08.17.2011 | 7:12 am

    Those last few photos of you on the bike are spectacular, Fatty. What a smile!! Congratulations to you both for a job well-done and hard-earned.

  4. Comment by Rob L | 08.17.2011 | 7:13 am

    Congrats again FAtty. Can’t imagine doing it in that kind of time, much less with that many nuts also out there.

  5. Comment by Steve H | 08.17.2011 | 7:17 am

    “Proof that, once in a while, the stars align and — if you’re ready for it — you can have the race of your life.”

    And that, I think, says it all! Once again, congratulations to you and the Hammer.

  6. Comment by Mtbboy | 08.17.2011 | 7:19 am

    TANDEM! been thinking about getting one myself…..Fandango 29er. Go for it!

  7. Comment by Steve Z | 08.17.2011 | 7:21 am

    To say I cried reading your report would only be a slight overstatement. Meeting a lifelong goal is, well, the thrill of a lifetime. It made me want to trail for Leadville and I don’t even own a mountain bike.

    Here’s the one thing that pissed me off about your three-part report:

    “…starting next year, aid stations would not have any foods with preservatives or food colorings.”

    This is so ridiculously stupid it has made me rethink my momentary decision to train for Leadville. It has also made me think that LifeTime Fitness is more about appearances than actual fitness. Actually, it makes me think the owner is a total “delta-bravo” (I won’t sully your comment board with the actual phrase but it rhymes with boosh-dag).

  8. Comment by KM | 08.17.2011 | 7:24 am

    Congrats again to you and the Hammer! IMHO, I vote for you to layg waste to the singlespeed division next year. Heck, with the extra weight savings of having no gears, you should slaughter the course and leave Kenny weeping dusty tears of envy! One and Done. I’ll be back on the bike soon (recovering from getting hit by a pickup last week during an AM ride…kinda puts a damper on my riding for a few weeks and I need to get a new rd. bike) regardless soon I’ll be laying plans for my first 100 MTB race/ride next year. Congrats again!

    I’m just glad that you’re going to be OK. Getting hit by a truck=nightmare. Heal fast! – FC

  9. Comment by atxcyclist | 08.17.2011 | 7:32 am

    Great report Fatty! Out of all the changes in the race this year, I still can’t believe they didn’t give the sweatshirt with your name and time printed on the sleeve the year you finish with your best time. Oh well, great race and killer report. I too almost shed a tear.

    My vote is to shave 19 minutes off your time and finish in under 8 hours. Keep setting the bar higher… The tandem idea would be pretty cool too.

    “You’re better than you think you are and you can do more than you think you can.”

    They did in fact reverse themselves on the “no sweatshirt” thing, and will be mailing out personalized sweatshirts sometime next month. Yay! – FC

  10. Comment by MattyC | 08.17.2011 | 7:34 am

    I am all for the tandem thing. I have suggested it to Todd Wells and Rebecca Rusch that they get Specialized to build them a tandem, and she replied to my tweet with this photo, claiming it needed knobby tires and questioned who would sit in front.

  11. Comment by Jason Crawford | 08.17.2011 | 7:52 am


    I’ve been following your blog for years now and can say that I’m so pumped for you. I’m so happy that you and the “hammer” enjoy each other so much….that may be even more important than the sub 9 hrs.

    Agreed! – FC

  12. Comment by The Bike Nazi | 08.17.2011 | 8:00 am

    I am so happy for you. You are a drive man! Now you need a new carrot! Ha haa. I totally get that. All your talk about the LV 100 has got me wondering if I’d like to do a 100 mile mt bike race. My gosh. My longest one has been almost 30 miles (and it was on the east coast). I gotta move out west!

  13. Comment by Jouni R | 08.17.2011 | 8:06 am

    Thanks for the last three posts, and congrats again.

    You make me want to ride my bike!

  14. Comment by Obstinate Roadie | 08.17.2011 | 8:11 am

    Yeah, I’m thinking, “lose 10 or more pounds and go for sub 8 hours next year.”

    Yeah, the thought of a 7-something finish is a little bit intoxicating. – FC

  15. Comment by Graham | 08.17.2011 | 8:12 am

    Well, if you’re going to do it at least three more times, then why not:

    year 1: singlespeed
    year 2: tandem
    year 3: singlespeed tandem?!

    Seriously though, I would have to say go for the tandem. My wife and I have got one. We’ve never ridden it properly offroad, but they are a blast.

  16. Comment by bikemike | 08.17.2011 | 8:33 am

    You see, the stars don’t actually align or any thing like that. As you know, that the light we’re seeing “happened” thousands of years ago. They didn’t move into any weird position.

    No, my friend, you did this on your own. Accept it and keep on smiling. I’ll bet you’re still smiling, aren’t you? Yep, i knew you were.

    Yes, I am! And I changed the “stars” aligning to “planets.” Even so, your point stands. – FC

  17. Comment by Patrick #4091 | 08.17.2011 | 8:37 am

    I am in awe of your achievement, so proud of you!

  18. Comment by roan | 08.17.2011 | 8:41 am

    After ’seeing’ the antelope with the helmet off I’m surprised this race report wasn’t 4 pronged. Wait…it is…the 4th prong is The Hammer’s.

    I’m NOT in favor of the tandem…who’s going to steer ? SS sub-nine would be great, then a gear drive for sub-eight, then additional help if needed for the IT Guy. Then several more years just for the fun of it. By then you will be crewing for the twins.
    Awesome 8:18:01 (ya know that :01 is sorta just dangling out there, you need to drop it too, next on a SS).

  19. Comment by Roger Whitney | 08.17.2011 | 8:42 am

    Bravo Fatty. Thanks for letting us ride along in spirit.

  20. Comment by Brandy | 08.17.2011 | 8:47 am


    And go for the tandem.

  21. Comment by Mark | 08.17.2011 | 9:08 am

    Being a Colorado boy (I’ll get back eventually), I just totally soaked up your posts. Great job to you both! I did the Iron Horse criterium this May and felt the same way – race of a lifetime! Again, well done, both racing and writing!!

  22. Comment by Jacob | 08.17.2011 | 9:09 am

    Is it surprising to have that much variation on an off-road course that long? Seems like way to many things outside of your control could be the reason for the swings.

    And the obvious next goal is sub-8, although I wouldn’t fault you for focusing on IT guy.

  23. Comment by Dan | 08.17.2011 | 9:16 am

    Thank you Fatty for sharing your triumph and your achievenment. I feel jus a little of the awesomeness rubbing off. It really is inspiring me to get out and ride!

    A tandem would be cool but it brings in a whole new level of stress and having to work together. I say focus on what makes you happy and then share with us who live vicariously through you.

  24. Comment by Paul Guyot | 08.17.2011 | 9:16 am

    What I love about cycling is the community. “Meeting” you and other Fatties, and instantly being family.

    It is not all about the bike. It is all about the people.

    You have accomplished an amazing feat for yourself. You worked, you sweated, you sacrificed, and you did it.

    So now, pay it forward. Do what is so special and so unique about this sport…

    Help someone else. Get the IT Guy his taste of Leadville nirvana. Share what you and other finishers can only experience.

    You and The Hammer can ride the tandem (which is a GREAT idea, by the way) in 2013 or 2014.

    But next year, ride for someone else. Do what you are best at, Fatty — helping others.

    If the IT Guy wants a pacer, I would love to do that. On the other hand, when he’s in the pain cave, I know from watching him that he does NOT like company. – FC

  25. Comment by Charlie | 08.17.2011 | 9:27 am

    Awesome effort to you and the Hammer. I guess you should have used gears all along.

    Recommendations for goals:
    1)Get the IT Guy in under 12 hours, he deserves it.
    2)Single speed in under 9.
    3)Tandem with the Hammer to celebrate the 1000 mile mark (under 9, of course).

  26. Comment by GrizzlyAdam | 08.17.2011 | 9:41 am

    No preservatives? Maybe they can go one step further, and only allow Vegans to register for the race.

    But really, fantastic race. You crushed your PR by almost an hour. That’s remarkable. 15 finishes and an 8:18 seems like a nice place to retire from chasing the LT100. You’d probably have a ton of fun getting the IT Guy to the finish line (got to get him to the start line first), and how cool would that be for him, to have a personal escort who knows the race backwards and forwards, pacing and encouraging him?

    Well done Fatty. I know there were a lot of us here at home that were checking our phones every 5 minutes for updates. With the fitness you’ve got right now, I may have to abstain from joining you on any AF Canyon “rides” .

    I went for a ride with SkiBikeJunkie this morning. I couldn’t hang with him. – FC

  27. Comment by nh_joe | 08.17.2011 | 9:46 am

    Awesome job! It was great meeting you at the finish, if only briefly (I’m Joe, NYCcarlos’s friend). I’m not crazy about a few changes myself…watering the course in the morning??? It’s a mountain bike race! If dust is what is deterring you from the LT100 than you probably don’t belong in the first place. Also, buckles for chip times at 9:03? I’d be interested on your thoughts since it was my first year and you are a veteran. I don’t stop at the aid stations but Coke, M&Ms, and other pure sugar foods are aid station staples!

    I didn’t know they watered the course. It still seemed pretty dusty to me (as you can see in the photos), so it didn’t do much good.

    The buckles for 9:03 chip times make no sense to me. If I had gotten a 9:03 (or 9:02, or 9:01, or 9:00), I would have declined the big buckle. And in fact, I know a guy who did just that. 8:59:59: give me the buckle and I’m happy with it. 9:00:00: Thanks but no thanks; I’ll try again next year. – FC

  28. Comment by Jennifer | 08.17.2011 | 9:47 am

    wow, this brought tears to my eyes. thanks for a great race report and congrats to your incredible victory!

  29. Comment by Maggi | 08.17.2011 | 9:49 am

    Dagnabbit, Fatty, you done gone and got me choked up again. Great wrap to the saga! Way to go!

    And I am going to throw my vote in with Paul — help the IT Guy get there next year.

    I’m going to leave that up to The IT Guy. It’s The Hammer’s opinion that The IT Guy is the kind of person who would not want to have a babysitter on this course. I.e., that when he finishes it, he is the kind of person who would want to say he did it HIMSELF. We’ll have to see. It’s a long ways off. – FC

  30. Comment by rabidrunner | 08.17.2011 | 9:54 am

    I think I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again (just in case): You are a fantastic addition to the human race. Well done!

    Thanks, Rabid! Hey, when are you gonna do the foot version of this race? The Hammer and I hereby volunteer to pace you for parts of it. In particular, I volunteer to pace you for the sections where you want to go slow. – FC

  31. Comment by Mike C | 08.17.2011 | 9:58 am

    Congratulations, Fatty! Great job and thanks for the always-entertaining race reports.

  32. Comment by Dan in Sac | 08.17.2011 | 10:00 am

    Nice going to the both of you. Man, The Hammer was NAILS out there.

  33. Comment by Marshall Miller | 08.17.2011 | 10:03 am

    No coke or chips? Oh man. Those are my go-to foods on a long, hard ride. They got me through the Death Ride this year (along with V-8).

    I generally avoid those kind of foods off the bike, but the race organizers should understand that not everyone wants to be a purist DURING an endurance event.

    Amen, brother. – FC

  34. Comment by jbt | 08.17.2011 | 10:04 am


    For your future race nutritional and hydration information, Coca Cola does not have preservatives or artificial color!

    THAT is the best news I’ve heard all day! – FC

  35. Comment by Leslie | 08.17.2011 | 10:11 am


  36. Comment by Jeff Bike | 08.17.2011 | 10:13 am

    Very Well Done!
    Do you get reconized if you complete 1500 miles next year? You said Hammer would need 3 more runs to get her 1000 miles.
    I think you should use the tandem and get the IT Guy in under twelve. Kill two birds with one stone. Im sure The Hammer would be willing to do it just to get the IT Guy in under time.

  37. Comment by Vito | 08.17.2011 | 10:20 am

    Tandem & the 8 hr. mark.

    I say tandem because my amigo Grasshopper just got one and has informed me that I will be his stoker next at the Chequamegon Fat Festival. Boy am I in trouble:)

  38. Comment by Charlie | 08.17.2011 | 10:24 am

    Oh, and about the Edge 500. You can set a correction at the beginning of your ride. You need to go into the menu and set an altitude based on a known accurate measurement at your location of choice. For example, when at Leadville next, set your Edge to the known altitude at the start line. It will put that location and altitude into memory and remind you when you are at that location again and set the properly adjusted altitude if you so desire. You can do this with all your regular rides. A bit of a hassle, but if accuracy is what you desire, then this would be a good workaround.

  39. Comment by centurion | 08.17.2011 | 10:25 am

    Either go for a sub 8(only gotta knock off 18 minutes, piece of cake for you), or a sub 9 on a SS.
    IMHO, leave the divorce bike at home.

  40. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 08.17.2011 | 10:26 am

    Well done story! But aren’t they all? Now I can only add:

    (darn! I couldn’t ‘paste’ the bold and increasing point size across)

  41. Comment by MikeL | 08.17.2011 | 10:26 am

    Congrats to you and the Hammer. Well done in deed.
    I have a feeling that Leadville will never be the same now that Lifetime is involved. When you start adding money and false image to events like this the quality goes down. I used to do horseback endurance racing and the same thing happened there

  42. Comment by Brian in VA | 08.17.2011 | 10:27 am

    First, Congratulations to both you and the Hammer on your achievements! Terrific work!

    Second, I’ve only been reading your blog for a few weeks as I’ve just gotten back into cycling, all for exercise. It’s a terrific read for me and very inspiring; makes me want to become a better cyclist and, more importantly, a better person. Thanks for that!

    Third, next carrot needs to be a combination of a personal one (for you) and one for someone else since you appear to love helping others. Only you can decide what that should be although others have had some great suggestions.

    Finally, keep up the good work you’re doing. Just your being around helps make the rest of us better.

    Brian in VA
    (Just hoping to ride a century some day.)

  43. Comment by Christina | 08.17.2011 | 10:32 am

    The DNF in 2009 made me tear up a little, because of everything surrounding that race.

    I want to see the tandem for the shear amazingness of it not snapping in half from the motors that would be driving it.


    P.S. “If I were to put on an event…” means that you should totally put on an event. OR…OR…get Livestrong to return to Colorado. You have that kind of pull, right?

  44. Comment by Liz | 08.17.2011 | 10:46 am

    Excellent conclusion, thanks! Can’t wait to read the Hammer’s.

    This series must be inspiring me because my commute to work this morning was faster than it has been in weeks. Can’t wait for the hills this afternoon.

    And as for your future options, I say none of the above. Retire while you are at your peak, crew for IT Guy and the Hammer and regale all the other spectators with stories from your 15 years of glory.

  45. Comment by CAPT Steve | 08.17.2011 | 10:48 am

    Great ride Fatty and Hammer. One particular picture makes me think you could say you ride for the University of Michigan; think you’ll figure out which.

  46. Comment by Bryan (not that one) | 08.17.2011 | 10:58 am

    Great report, Fatty! Now it’s Hammer time! (Sigh, I am so sorry for that.)

  47. Comment by nh_joe | 08.17.2011 | 10:59 am

    About the watering – they didn’t do it this year but said because of the dust they were planning to do it next year. I just think the course shouldn’t have any unreasonable hazards but that the weather is something you need to deal with. There are plenty of indoor sports.

  48. Comment by Doug (Way upstate NY) | 08.17.2011 | 11:11 am

    Awesome job. Now I am all pumped. Good thing LiveStrong Philly is this weekend. Good thing I am going :)

  49. Comment by m burdge | 08.17.2011 | 11:17 am

    Congratulations, both of you. I just bought an Ibis Uncle Fester Tandem for riding with my family. If you want to borrow it for next year, you are welcome to it. Just think of it–seven speed SunTour, no disk brakes, fully rigid steel, threaded headset–how hard core would that be, to race Leadville on a set of Superbe Pro hubs?

  50. Comment by MattC | 08.17.2011 | 11:20 am

    Just a quick peek (super busy)…GREAT writeup Fatty! Have to say I agree w/ Hammer…(about pacing IT guy)…just think how YOU would feel right this very moment if your time this year had been based on getting paced/helped by someone the entire race..sure YOU did the ride, but it’s the help part…some people NEED to know their results are totally due to THEIR work. Tho road centuries are diff for some reason…maybe cuz road riding is more of a ‘team sport’ and all…(I rode w/ a guy a few years back during the Solvang Century and he wouldn’t draft on anybody…said he needed to know what he can do…I told him they have races like that, they’re called TT’s).

    All in all, you did a great ride and I bet your grin will be long-lived. I KNEW you could do it. But just how you will motivate yourself to even GREATER heights in the future is the question. When you figure that out, pass it on…cuz I’m always in need of motivation. I think the ‘free bike’ thing this year really pushed you over the edge, and that will be kind of hard to beat I’m afraid. However, you constantly amaze us with the things you pull off (your SUPER-power in action)…so I wouldn’t bet against you finding something even MORE awesome than a free carbon Stumpy for reaching yet another milestone time. What would you do for a sub-8? Hmmm???

  51. Comment by Christina | 08.17.2011 | 11:32 am

    Wait, MattC just made me think of something…were you holding out all these other years just hoping someone would offer you a bike? It’s been a scam! You had it in you all along!


  52. Comment by Shawn | 08.17.2011 | 11:33 am

    Since you conquered the 9hr race time it probably time to go for the Leadman title.. Fatty… Leadman sounds good huh????

  53. Comment by evilbanks | 08.17.2011 | 12:00 pm

    Dude, that plain rules. CONGRATULATIONS!

  54. Comment by Corey | 08.17.2011 | 12:33 pm

    I vote for a sub-9 finish on a tandem bike. Ellsworth makes a nice one.

  55. Comment by bahama mama | 08.17.2011 | 12:40 pm

    Sari Anderson had some nice words about you:

    “I found myself riding next to Elden Nelson, aka the world-famous Fat Cyclist, whose blog I’ve enjoyed for years now. Elden is an inspiration and I was psyched to be riding with him”

  56. Comment by MellowJonny | 08.17.2011 | 1:07 pm

    next year sub 8!!!!!!


  57. Comment by ricky | 08.17.2011 | 1:20 pm

    hey fatty!
    congrats on the race of your life!

    tally one vote against the tandem idea.
    you and the hammer have a good thing going.
    no need to ruin it by getting on a tandem!

  58. Comment by Heidi | 08.17.2011 | 1:24 pm

    Wahoo! Fabulous photos of happy, successful racers. Boy, are you two well suited for each other…

    ‘Bout time to mention Grand Slam for Zambia again, yes?

  59. Comment by Ethan | 08.17.2011 | 1:24 pm

    I vote for the tandem mountain bike.

  60. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 08.17.2011 | 1:29 pm

    @MattC I like your thought that “doing it yourself on a MTB Race is part of the challenge”, I also have another thought:

    Has anyone asked the IT Guy what he wants? Can we all remember how The Hammer offered “help” on the training ride?

    “You are finishing the ride,” said The Hammer, with the full force of a woman whose nickname is “The Hammer.”

    and his answer:

    “I’ll keep going, but not if you keep waiting for me.”

    Train him, prep him, and let him fly!

  61. Comment by MtlDan | 08.17.2011 | 1:46 pm

    Inconsistant? Maybe. But ignoring 2009, you’ve improved in every odd year and gotten worse in every even year. You’re completely predictable. So I’m betting on 8:55 next year, which is awesome on a SS. Congratulations in advance.

  62. Comment by nosferaustin | 08.17.2011 | 2:01 pm

    You have almost (almost) made me wish to get a mountain bike. I’ll settle instead for hoping to keep up with you the whole time next time we ride a century or something (Livestrong ‘12?) Awesome job, both with the write ups and the race. Tell Lisa, to get pen to paper -or I guess pinkies to keys? – can’t wait to read her race report. Beautiful job, both of you, and congrats on the new ride!

    (Steven in SLC)

  63. Comment by Haven-KT | 08.17.2011 | 2:03 pm

    I say 2011 Leadville on a unicycle.

    Or, challenge my friend Carl Decker. I think you can take him.

    Those are two very good ideas, neither of which I intend to do. – FC

  64. Comment by Brad | 08.17.2011 | 2:06 pm

    Well done! Now go sub-9 singlespeed!

  65. Comment by ChipGeek | 08.17.2011 | 2:10 pm

    Congratulations Fatty! I would be very interested in seeing an extra column added to your table of year vs. race time. What was your race weight for each of those years?

    Pretty much what you’d expect. – FC

  66. Comment by AngieG | 08.17.2011 | 2:36 pm

    Congrats to you both. I know how hard you have worked for this. Making the success of the accomplishment that much sweeter.

    I’m with @David-marin,CA- next year, if the IT Guy is interested, your role is to get him ready. What he does on race day is up to him.

    The most valuable asset cycling has given me is mental toughness. How to battle those internal demons and come out feeling stronger for it. Its a strength that has be invaluabl beyond my time on the bike.

    If he wants, the IT Guy will find it too. If the IT Guy isn’t interested, then my vote is for the sub 8 finish on a geared bike or a sub 9 on your single speed.

    I’ll even take some time off and crew for you. Then you can have coke and pie at the aid stations. :-)

    That is the most awesome offer, ever. And I’m not even talking about the Coke and pie. – FC

  67. Comment by Paul | 08.17.2011 | 3:11 pm

    Congratulations! I enjoy reading your blog and am amazed at what you have accomplished. I must admit that the substance of the first two posts were great, excpet for the commercials / product placement mentions. I know it is cool that you have folks sending you stufff for free, and that you are no doubt sincere that you like their products, but these shout-outs otherwise detract from your blog IMHO. [Maybe that's just the way things are these days]

    I am not paid to mention any products, and the companies I mentioned did not ask me to mention their products. I mention them because I like them, and want businesses who are making good stuff to succeed.

    If you like something, you probably tell your friends about it, right? Same thing. – FC

  68. Comment by Anonymous | 08.17.2011 | 3:15 pm

    That’s freakin’ awesome. Fatty! Well done!

  69. Comment by Josh | 08.17.2011 | 3:17 pm

    Amazing accomplishment, Fatty! Way to go get you some!

  70. Comment by Comment | 08.17.2011 | 3:20 pm

    Bib 1825?

    Thanks for pointing that out! Looks like that is Ehrin Bulfin, whom I don’t believe I have met, but who was — awesomely — wearing a Fat Cyclist jersey. The photos I see of him look like he is pushing himself hard, and it paid off: he finished before the 12-hour cutoff. This makes him extra-awesome, as far as I’m concerned. Way to go, Ehrin! – FC

  71. Comment by Clydesteve | 08.17.2011 | 3:40 pm

    You were ready for it, Bud! Great Write-UP!

    Lisa – Your turn. If you fail to do this I will send you pictures of fat guys in white bicycle shorts! (Not me – guys who do not know any better.)

  72. Comment by GJ Jackie | 08.17.2011 | 4:01 pm

    Too bad the IT guy doesn’t like company. It would be the perfect opportunity for you, Fatty, to return the full moon of motivation.

  73. Comment by UtRider | 08.17.2011 | 4:10 pm

    Do me a huge favor and throw down on the Clark’s TT once you’ve recovered and still have such good legs. I’m curious how your time will compare to 2009 (even though the trail is a bit longer now). You could go #1 in 2011.

  74. Comment by Kiki | 08.17.2011 | 4:19 pm

    The bag in front of me say, Potatoes, Salt, Oil – no red dye #5, 6 or even 9 or any big words that I can’t say so you should still get your chips! Without chips there is no way I would have made it up St Kevins inbound last year, no way!

  75. Comment by zeeeter | 08.17.2011 | 4:21 pm

    Thanks Fatty, enjoyed reading the third installment! As for goals next year (per The Hammer at the hall of fame, I’m banned from mentioning the unicycle *ulp) so how about a podium eh? Age group division will do, you know you want to . . .

  76. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 08.17.2011 | 5:08 pm

    @Comment by zeeeter | 08.17.2011 | 4:21
    So to get ‘age group podium position’ let’s take a look:

    In his present age bracket he’ll need to drop another 1hr. 5 minutes
    24. Paul Thomas; Division place: 3 M4 (40 to 49) 7:13:07

    If he maintains conditioning, weight, bike quality, etc. for FIVE years he’ll only need to drop 23 minutes
    70. Doug Andrews; Division place: 3 M5 (50 to 59) 7:55:16

    The quickest, and most dramatic, way to reach the podium, only a 16 minute difference?
    82. Tammy Jacques; Division place: 3 F4 (40 to 49) 8:02:30

    Though this method would require a commitment that even the”Fatty” himself might balk at. I think The Hammer would have some issues too.

  77. Comment by Cyclin' Missy | 08.17.2011 | 5:39 pm

    Congratulations once again. Thanks for telling the story! I can’t wait to read the Hammer’s report.

  78. Comment by Days | 08.17.2011 | 5:55 pm

    Your blog has seen so much, through good times, hard times and no-other-way-to-put-it tragedy.

    However, this story, in three parts, is sheer unadulterated joy from beginning to end.

    Your blog has always been a good read. This was a treat.

  79. Comment by Allen | 08.17.2011 | 6:18 pm

    Very amazing! Congratz!!!!

    I think you need to change your pseudonym to SKINNY!!!

    Please share the diet with those of use who better fit your moniker.

  80. Comment by Lime Crush | 08.17.2011 | 7:08 pm

    Thanks for taking me along for the adventure, Fatty. Great race report. Good luck with whatever you choose for your next goal.

    For the record, I vote tandem. That sounds super-fun to me.

  81. Comment by zeeeter | 08.17.2011 | 7:18 pm

    Comment by @davidh-marin,ca | 08.17.2011 | 5:08 pm’

    Very true, and all good analysis, but on balance a more reasonable goal than the unicycle methinks :) especially considering what Fatty cut off his time for this year!

  82. Comment by The IT Guy | 08.17.2011 | 7:24 pm

    Fatty, I think that next year you need to shoot for a sub-8. You cut 55 minutes off your time this year. I think you might be able to pull out a 7:30 next year.

    Leadville is a personal race, no one is going to get me accross the finish line except myself.

    I am very unhappy that I missed the race this year. I can’t even guess when I would have crossed the finish line, but it doesn’t really matter anymore.

    I will work just as hard at it next year. All I can hope for is that I don’t do something stupid to ruin it one week before the race.

    Does anyone else feel like crying after reading The IT Guy’s comment? – FC

  83. Comment by Days | 08.17.2011 | 7:49 pm

    @IT Guy/FC

    Awesome. Nope, I don’t feel like crying. I feel like getting on my bike and riding. I feel like actually serously training. I feel like shedding those extra few kilos.

    It must be hard to reset goals after chasing this whale for so long. I agree with IT Guy, why try do the race on anything but your dream bike? Why try to do a fast time on a slower bike? I’d just be aiming to improve my time. Sub 8? Can you do it?

  84. Comment by roan | 08.17.2011 | 8:51 pm

    To, The IT Guy, nice to see your 2 cents worth.

    I tried to write something to encourage you but after hitting the ‘delete’ so many times, I’m just at a loss as to what a stranger can say, except Best Wishes. (can’t say I was crying but I was sad when I learned about your crash)

    Fatty, you need to remove the pedals from The Hammer’s bikes. Tell her you are having them re-built and lubed. Then kindly suggest that with the free time she sit down at the computer.

  85. Comment by ChrisB | 08.17.2011 | 9:25 pm

    Congrats! Very stoked to see you pull that off after all this time. 15 rides… Time to step up to the run!

  86. Comment by Jeremy | 08.17.2011 | 11:27 pm

    Great ride report. It almost makes me want to go ride Leadville. Then I remember the anchor in my hip pocket that always falls out when grades hit 4%. Being a touch on the heavy side, the reminders to eat and drink, even when you don’t want to, are absolutely critical.

  87. Comment by Bee | 08.18.2011 | 1:53 am

    Awww, nice comment from the IT guy. I’m rooting for him for next year. Personally, I’d find someone who needs a cheerleader and haul them to their goal time, but I like to do a race myself and then keep my karma bucket full by helping out on the next one.

    Of course, if the IT guy suggests a 7:30, that might be karmic enough to obey the wishes of the recovering!


    HAM-MER! (Chanting)

    Write, Hammer! Write for the girls!!

  88. Comment by Neil | 08.18.2011 | 2:58 am

    My wife and I ride a tandem, and I still ride my MTB and road bike a lot. But it is totally worth it. And from following your posts for a few years now, I really reckon you guys will love it! It doesn’t work for some but I am pretty sure it’ll work great for you. Pretty sweet how much faster you can go on flat sections too. generally hills are a little tougher.

  89. Comment by Rebecca | 08.18.2011 | 3:46 am

    Wow. As a new cyclist (and waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay fatter than you which makes your monika a joke :P) you are a total inspiration. I have been struggling to see cycling as a sport I could take part in events with, I used to run and I can’t anymore so it’s a big change from just putting one foot in front of the other. Thanks for the inspiration, I hope you read this because I mean it.

  90. Comment by Doug (Way upstate NY) | 08.18.2011 | 7:31 am

    BTW. My vote would be to go for sub 8 hours. You are in good shape, riding fast. Do it now while you can and then you don’t have to look back and wonder. Its only 18 minutes…..Then you and the Hammer can set goals when you get on the tandem down the road.

  91. Comment by Adventure Monkey | 08.18.2011 | 9:53 am

    Why am I crying? Crap here comes my boss. I’ll definitely be headed to EAP (employee assistance program AKA the shrink) now since I can’t admit I was reading non work material at work.

  92. Comment by MattC | 08.18.2011 | 10:17 am

    Fatty, I think you should do next years LT100 on a tandem unicycle!

    IT guy…we’ve never met, but I wish you a speedy recovery so you can get back out there doing the things you like…so sorry you missed this years LT100… but I like your attitude. Heal fast!

  93. Comment by Eva | 08.18.2011 | 11:02 am

    I am soooooo happy for both of you and so proud of this accomplishmens!!! I sooo enjoyed reading the story too and admiring the radiant pics.
    I’ll be cheering for the three of you next year with whatever objective you select.

  94. Comment by Pari | 08.18.2011 | 2:46 pm

    Your race reports are soooo good that I use them instead of training, as I feel that I have just done a ride aftre reading. A bit of a probem is that I in reality eat energy food while doing it, which could have bad effects…
    One suggestion, I would like to hear your reasons for loving to ride SS so much sofar and if Stumpy changed this affection?

  95. Comment by Brian Dinkins | 08.18.2011 | 4:40 pm

    Very inspirational. As someone who is turning 39 soon I have great hope that my fastest years are ahead of me.

  96. Comment by Lisa | 08.18.2011 | 5:13 pm

    What an amazing race. I had tears in my eyes seeing you PR’ed!

  97. Comment by Jen Gatz | 08.18.2011 | 6:13 pm

    Congrats! I vote SS for under 9! Go for it!

  98. Comment by Stephen | 08.18.2011 | 7:50 pm

    I vote for the tandem. My wife and I have been enjoying a Co-Motion road tandem for a few years now. It’s the great equalizer, there’s no way you can’t ride together at the same pace! You two will probably have to arm wrestle or something to determine the captain/stoker arrangement, though.

  99. Comment by Andrew | 08.18.2011 | 8:13 pm

    you know what’s weird? i think i’ve been reading this stupid blog through a LOT of those finishes. & why is tyson so much cooler than everybody else.

  100. Comment by Carl | 08.18.2011 | 8:30 pm

    Great story!!! Since you smashed your PR, I join with those saying to break 8 hours next year.

  101. Comment by sdcadbiker | 08.18.2011 | 10:06 pm

    Awesome story as always, Fatty! Congrats to you & Hammer girl :-)
    Question: how can a bugaboo also be a hobgoblin? Different genus, surely?
    Suggestion for next year: Superfly 100, prove that it wasn’t just the bike this time. 2013: Fattyfly! (if you still have that bike).

  102. Comment by Freddy Freshlegs | 08.18.2011 | 10:15 pm

    There is a pattern to your results – and they really don’t look all that that inconsistent. You’ve traditionally been either low 9’s or 10’s. Toss out your lowest (8:18) and highest (11:27) as outliers and you’ve more or less oscillated between the extremes.

    You could probably could look at that table and map each result directly to a “good” day or “bad” day with a high degree of certainty.

    Regardless – excellent work, like everyone else here I’m thrilled out of my mind for you. Keep up whatever you’re doing – it’s clearly working.

  103. Comment by pedalpink | 08.19.2011 | 11:12 am

    Definitely the tandem – we talked about it at Davis LiveStrong. I’m so glad so many other people think it’s a good idea, too. Definitely the Fandango 29′er, but you should test ride the Ventana El Conquistador de Montanas.

    Congratulations to both Elden and Lisa on new PRs at Leadville. I think the pictures of your faces with the post ride grime are among your best photos ever!

  104. Comment by davidh-marin,ca | 08.19.2011 | 12:15 pm

    Ventana El Conquistador? You know Fatty he’ll go “ALL IN’!
    Is that something we really want to see?…………

    Yeah! I think it is.

  105. Comment by Jen | 08.23.2011 | 12:05 pm

    My vote is to ride tandem and together help the IT guy finish under 12?

  106. Comment by Dane | 08.23.2011 | 5:17 pm

    SUPER inspirational post, Fatty! I read all of yours and The Hammer’s with relish non-stop. Inspired me to focus my training for that long ride I want to do next season (STP-200).

  107. Comment by Dan | 12.12.2011 | 10:30 pm

    A late vote for tandem. We have two Leadville finishes on a tandem and it’s a blast!!!


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