2012 Park City Point 2 Point, Part 3: I am a Dirty Rotten Scoundrel

09.6.2012 | 11:47 am

draperfallclassic502012_0.jpgA What’s-Next-for-Fatty Note from Fatty: A week from Saturday, I’ll be racing in the singlespeed division in the Draper Fall Classic 50, a two-loop, all-singletrack fifty-mile mountain bike race in my favorite backyard trail network, Corner Canyon. You should come race it too. And if 50 miles doesn’t sound like your kind of distance, there’s a 25-mile, 1-loop option.

$5 of every entry goes to the Huntsman Cancer Foundation, and all proceeds from the post-race raffle will go to the foundation as well. So this is a race with both its heart and its wallet in the right place. If you’re even reasonably local, you ought to come race it with me.

A Note from Fatty About Today’s Post: This is part 3 in my telling of this year’s Park City Point 2 Point race, a (normally) 78-mile, 14K-of-climbing MTB race, almost entirely on singletrack. Click here to read part 1. And click here for part 2.

Before we get rolling with today’s story, I’d like to point out something that I’ve just noticed about myself that really bothers me:

When racing, I apparently never close my mouth. Not even for a second. Observe the following four photos, all taken by the good folks at Zazoosh:





You must believe that I am not cherry-picking here. And you must also believe that I find it a little bit disturbing that I am apparantly perpetually slack-jawed when I race.

I mean, just think about how much mud — and how many bugs — I must’ve swallowed during that race.

Thank you for your indulgence. Now on with the story of what happened after I crossed the finish line at the Park City Point 2 Point.

Tension Mounts

As soon as I finished the Park City Point 2 Point, I parked my bike in a convenient place, and then parked myself in a different convenient place: specifically, under the Vitamin Water canopy. Since it was raining at the moment, this solved one problem.

I then proceeded to make myself at home, drinking all their product and sitting in one of their chairs.

It didn’t even occur to me to ask if this was OK by them. I was thirsty, I needed a place to sit; here was a chair and stuff to drink.

And then it started to rain harder. And by “harder,” I mean “really really hard.”

Now, normally, this kind of intense rain, shortly after I finished the race, would have made me chortle with malicious glee, for there’s nothing I like more than other people’s suffering. It’s the main reason I race, really.

But in this case, in addition to all the people I was happy to have soaking and freezing and possibly electrocuted, The Hammer was out there.

I confess: I began to fret.

“My wife’s out there in that rain,” I said to one of the twenty-something-girls whose job it was to give out Vitamin Water to racers after they finish. I said this worriedly, but also to let her know that I’m taken, and that if she was looking to get her hands on a stinky, muddy, middle-aged, balding, paunchy cyclist, she should look elsewhere.

“Well what are you doing here?” She replied. “Go out and save her!”

Chastened, I left the tent. Not to save The Hammer — because there was no way I was getting back on my bike and heading up that mountain — but to go change into some dry clothes I had cleverly put in a drop bag and were thus now waiting for me at the finish line.

By the time I returned, the rain had stopped and it was sunny.

I Enjoy A Moment In the Sun

As a beloved and award-winning cycling celebrity, it’s pretty rare that I have nothing to do but stand around and do nothing. So the fact that I got to just lean against the fence at the finishers’ chute for a while, watching racers come in, was a real pleasure for me.

I paid attention to finishers’ faces, and the wide variety of expressions they showed as they approached and crossed the line. Exhaustion. Intensity. Relief. Happiness.

Hanging out at finish lines is awesome.

And then it got even awesomer, because one of the nicest people in the whole world — Kanyon Kris –showed up. “Were you racing or crewing for someone?” I asked.

“Nope, just here to watch the race, Kris said. And then he opened up his ice chest and gave me a cold Coke.

Have I ever mentioned that Kanyon Kris is one of the nicest people in the whole world?

So Kris and I stood there and talked, while watching racers finish. Meanwhile, Joaquim — the owner of Zazoosh — took photos of finishers. I asked him to capture me in a heroic pose. He obliged:


As you can see, I am looking fearlessly into the future. And enjoying a Coke.

Then, just when things couldn’t get any better, I saw someone carrying around what looked to be finishers’ stats. Curious as to what my actual finishing time was (remember, I had forgotten to start my GPS at the beginning of the race), I sashayed on over.

Yes, I sashayed; I’ve been developing this walking technique for quite some time. Next time you see me, ask to see it; it’s something to behold.

I asked to see the “midlife crisis” category, and there I was: third.

I had taken third.

I suppressed a whoop, but believe that I may have let a yip escape. This was not the right kind of behavior for someone who has recently sashayed, but I was giddy from excitement and quickly forgave myself.

Oh Good, a MEETING!

Before long, Kenny came down the chute. He hadn’t had a great day: three flats and a bonk. I expressed sympathy, while silently rejoicing over my very intelligent decision to not ride a singlespeed. I tell you, racing the PCP2P with gears is barely half as hard as doing it on a single.

Hence, I would like to reaffirm my commitment to never race the PCP2P on a singlespeed ever again.

Kris — who I would like to go on record as stating is one of the nicest people in the world — volunteered to drive Kenny to go get his van, which was parked ten miles or so away.

I resumed my vigil at the finish line, getting more and more excited and anxious for The Hammer to cross the finish line. There had been word that there was bad weather — rain, hail, and lightning — up on the course, and they were pulling people off the course at the last aid station.

Did The Hammer get through the aid station? Was she out there in the hail and rain right now? Was she OK?

Then, over the PA, the race director said there was a racers’ meeting for the men who are desperately trying to hold on to their youth (i.e., 40-49).

Tired of sashaying, I simply walked over.

There, a person I had never met and who did not introduce himself — but looked like he was probably another one of the midlife crisis racers — told me that there was no way I was faster than him and that I therefore must have cut the course, and that he would like to validate his assertion by inspecting my GPS.

As you might expect, this did not immediately put me on the defensive at all.

I told him that my GPS wouldn’t be a great indicator of how far I went, since I had forgotten to turn it on ’til after the race had begun.

“Well, how far had you gone before you turned it on?” he asked, in what I would describe as a very friendly and non-lawyerly way. If it were opposite day, I mean.

“If I knew that, I wouldn’t have been guessing at how far I had to go to the next aid station the whole day,” I replied, in a way that I would describe as very non-petulant (still opposite day).

Another racer — Eric, his name was (and continues to be) — who finished first said that he was pretty sure he had in fact accidentally cut a section of the course. A few pros and other fast guys had accidentally cut this same section, too, after which someone had gone and bolstered the markings for the crucial turn (read more about that here).

I craned my neck, trying to get a look at the finish line. Shouldn’t The Hammer be getting in soon?

“I never felt like I was off course, even for a second, during the race,” I said.

My inquisitor went on to describe where he thought I might have cut the course, but my mind wandered. If this guy had known the extent of my lack of knowledge about the trail system here, he probably would have given up.

The conversation went around and around. I just wanted to get back to the finish line so I could be there when (if?)The Hammer crossed.

“Guys, I didn’t feel like I missed any markings or turns, but if it seems to you like I must have cut a section, go ahead and give me that penalty,” I finally said. “Now I want to go back to the finish line and watch for my wife to finish.”

And I did.

Wherein I Distractedly Mount the Podium

I stood at the finish line, looking up the mountain, hoping The Hammer was OK. Hoping I’d see her coming down that mountain. Hoping hoping hoping.

And then they started doing the awards ceremony. First the pros, then someone else — I can’t say I was paying attention — and then my age group.

I walked over, turning toward the finish line every couple of seconds.

“So what was the decision?” I asked Eric.

“The results stand,” Eric said. “I’m the only one who knows whether I cut the course or not, so we’re just leaving things the way they stand.”

“OK,” I said. And I got up on the podium and took my third-place customized PCP2P bottle opener, my jar of pickles, and my hydration pack.

The whole time I was up there, though, I was watching the finishers’ chute, hoping The Hammer would drop in. Although I didn’t consider what I would do if she did happen to finish while they were still giving out prizes and stuff. Probably go anyway, I think.

I climbed off the podium and started walking toward the finish line to wait for The Hammer again, when the guy who had originally declared I and others must have cut the course if we had beat him, came up to me and shook my hand.

“Congratulations,” he said. “You did a good race. If I hadn’t been up here pre-riding the course with a GPX I think I probably would have missed that section, too.”

I decided to ignore the backhanded nature of the congratulations.

“Are you sure you’re OK with the standings?” I asked. “Because if you’re certain I somehow leapfrogged you, I don’t want a bogus award.”

He assured me he was fine, which was a huge relief to me, and I told him so.

And I probably would have gotten all profuse about how cool he was being, but right then I saw The Hammer coming down the hill and crossing the finish line.


“My wife just finished, gotta go,” I said, and took off running toward The Hammer.

Sometimes You’re The Hammer, Sometimes You’re The Nail . . . Even When You’re The Hammer

By the time I got to her, The Hammer was off her bike, and looking around for me — not expecting me to come up from behind.

You did it!” I shouted, grabbing her. Excited. Relieved. So happy that she was back and OK.

“Yeah. I did it,” The Hammer replied, faintly.

I have never heard her sound so exhausted.

I got her bike from her, got her camelbak off her. Got her something to drink. Sat her down in a dry place I found.

She sat there for a long time, not saying anything. In fact, she wouldn’t say much of anything the rest of the day. She was that cooked. She just sat there, with a blank look. Later, The Hammer told me that she put her sunglasses back on so she could cry without being seen.

Obviously, she had been through something big, and needed time to process it.

Wherein I Get My Answer

While we were sitting there — her in shock, me looking at my raffle ticket, willing the announcer (Jay Burke, the race director) to say my ticket number — I saw the racer-meeting-calling guy walking toward some people, who were coincidentally standing near where we were sitting.

“How’d you do?” one of those guys shouted out.

“I got f—cked!” racer-meeting-calling guy shouted back.

“Wow,” I thought. “So I guess he wasn’t totally good with the standings after all.”

I was caught between not wanting to eavesdrop and very much wanting to eavesdrop to find out what this guy’s totally unfiltered opinion was.

But then fate intervened: my raffle number was called.

You Sure About This?

I walked up to Jay and collected the helmet I had just won. Check it out:

I hope Scott doesn’t get too mad that I have his helmet.

Anyway, I took the opportunity to be talking with Jay to say, “Are you sure you want to go with these results? That one guy who wanted to have the racer meeting seems pretty angry.”

“No, he just told me he was good with it,” Jay said.

“Oh, well I just heard him tell some people he feels like he got f—ed,” I replied.

“He doesn’t know who — if anyone — cut the course, and we don’t either,” Jay said. “Don’t lose sleep over it.”

Right then, I both admired anyone who would ever take on the task of promoting a race, and promised myself that I would never take on that responsibility myself.

The Morning After, Part 1: Bummed-Outedness Begins

The Hammer and I drove home and went right to bed, both of us so exhausted that we didn’t even unpack the truck.

The next morning, we got up, and — with some trepidation — I uploaded our race data from our Garmins to Strava.

We looked at The Hammer’s first. As usual, she had all kinds of QOMs and top-tens and stuff.

Then we looked at mine.

“Oh no,” I said.

It didn’t take long for me to see that I hadn’t taken long to turn my GPS on after the race began. And it also didn’t take long for me to see that my distance was short.

Too short. I had missed a section, which some judgmental soul labeled as “Where the real men of the P2P rode (aka, the real course, not the cheater course).” The section I (and at least six other people, all at different times) missed before the course got re-marked connected up to the rest of the trail like this:


That blue Christmas tree-looking section is what I missed. About 2.6 miles, with 400 feet of descending and a corresponding 400 feet of climbing.


So I sent Jay an email, telling him it looked like I had missed a turn and had wound up right back on the course . . . without ever knowing I had been off. I let him know that he should probably add time to my finish and give the third place to someone else.

A few minutes later, Jay emailed back: “Don’t worry about it yet.”

The Morning After, Part 2: Awesomeness Begins

One thing neither The Hammer nor I had looked into while still at the race was how she had done. She was so cooked at the finish she just didn’t care; she just wanted to get home.

So now would be the first time we’d see how The Hammer did at the race.


Second. The Hammer didn’t even know she had gotten on the podium, and she had taken second. And in fact had only missed first by a minute and change.

So just for fun, I looked at the 35 and under division. The Hammer had beaten all of them. So she hadn’t just placed second in her age group, she had placed second of all the age groupers.

Not half bad.

So I emailed Jay again, this time telling him, “Hey, if you want, I can just give the prizes I got yesterday to my wife, who did do the whole course and kind of kicked butt at it without even realizing it.”

The Morning After, Part 3: I Become a Dirty Rotten Scoundrel

Shortly after the results came out, the PCP2P Facebook page started getting some outraged comments:


I suspected this was the meeting-calling-guy who had shaken my hand and congratulated me, but wasn’t sure. So I did a Google search on his name (which I’m hiding because I feel like it right now).

I couldn’t tell for sure from the results, so switched over to image results.

And immediately regretted that choice. And by “regretted,” I of course mean, “wished I had stabbed my eyes out before seeing what can never now be unseen.”

You see, it turns out that the Facebook commenter shares a name with a gay porn star. And that gay porn star has some pretty explicit images that are the top results for an image search on that name.

Although if they’re the same person, that whole “I got f—ed!” comment I had heard the day before would take on a whole new meaning, and would cause me to be really impressed that he still got such a fast finishing time.

(By the way, don’t bother doing an image search on me. The only other Elden Nelson on the web is an Presbyterian minister.)

Anyway, before long, the meeting-calling guy found a sympathetic commenter:


(Unrelated question: why do angry people have such a hard time with spelling and punctuation?)

Encouraged, the meeting-caller said:


[Note to self: the next time a stranger approaches and says that he thinks I missed a section, with his belief that he is faster than me as his justification for that assertion, simply "man up" (i.e., roll over). Also, don't take congratulations from that person particularly literally.]


I decided not to get involved in the Facebook thread, because I figured that their fondest wish was about to get granted. This was confirmed when Shannon Boffell, one of the race organizers, emailed Eric and me:

After riding the section of climb that some people missed it was determined that the trail took about 20 minutes to ride. Therefore, we are going to assess a 20 minute time addition to your times. You will see this adjustment to your time in the final results.

And thus was I moved from third to where I actually belong:


Soon, I’ll be mailing the awesome bottle opener and hydration pack to David Stockham. It won’t be easy, mainly because I don’t know his mailing address.

But I’ll do it anyway, because while I’m clearly a scheming cheater who will resort to nefarious means in order to win (or take third) at all costs, I’m trying to be better. Trying real hard.

But I’m keeping the jar of pickles, David. You can’t take those away from me.

Mostly because I’ve already eaten more than half of them.


  1. Comment by Kristina | 09.6.2012 | 12:03 pm

    Pfft. Clearly the pickles were the best part, anyway.

  2. Comment by dicky | 09.6.2012 | 12:07 pm

    You know, you seemed so nice in person. I feel duped.


    You’RE Dick

  3. Comment by dicky | 09.6.2012 | 12:11 pm

    BTW: I haz same helmütz. Very nice.

    Specialized for show, Scott for go.

  4. Comment by Jo | 09.6.2012 | 12:17 pm

    I got nothing to add regarding the PCP2P, but I might have the reason for your jaw-slacking: tighten your helmet straps and everything will be fine. See picture 3.

    Loved the story, btw.

    The straps are loose because my head had shrunk from dehydration. Proven scientific fact. – FC

  5. Comment by Jo | 09.6.2012 | 12:18 pm

    Of course I meant picture 4. Grmph.

  6. Comment by Mateo | 09.6.2012 | 12:18 pm

    that story was the best example of how to “man up” i’ve ever seen. way to go fatty, you are a gentleman and a competitor with honor. Chapeau!

  7. Comment by John the Trainer | 09.6.2012 | 12:19 pm

    just give them to The Hammer…

  8. Comment by Steven Toby | 09.6.2012 | 12:21 pm

    I thought we raced to have fun. Sounds to me like some folks aren’t having any fun!

  9. Comment by SR | 09.6.2012 | 12:25 pm

    “I said this worriedly, but also to let her know that I’m taken, and that if she was looking to get her hands on a stinky, muddy, middle-aged, balding, paunchy cyclist, she should look elsewhere.”


  10. Comment by Chris Engle | 09.6.2012 | 12:33 pm

    Wow, what a great story.

    Comment edited cuz it got a little mean. But I left in the part about how you like the story. Ha. – FC

  11. Comment by Jim Tolar | 09.6.2012 | 12:36 pm

    I have no problem with calls-a-meeting-guy calling for a meeting, or even his vocally protesting to each of you that he thinks/thought you cut the course. From your report, I gather you have no problem with it either (aside from the natural reaction to become a bit defensive if you don’t think you cut the course). I *do* have a problem with his reaction afterwards. That was decidedly douche-tastic.
    You made a mistake and corrected it when it was made clear. You have nothing to be ashamed of. I think the race Director did a fine job too. Calls-a-meeting guy did not cover himself in glory.
    Congrats to the Hammer! I hope we get to read her race report in the near future.


    Oh, I’d be VERY surprised if she writes a story about this race. She still hasn’t told me much about her day. – FC

  12. Comment by Doug (way upstate NY) | 09.6.2012 | 12:39 pm

    I thought that racing (at our level anyway) was supposed to be fun. A chance to challenge ourselves and see where we stand. It’s a bummer that some people have to be jerks about it. I hope if i ever get close to being like that my wife calls me out. It would be time to rethink the why of what I am doing. Sounds like you were in the proper space and hopefully you are happy with yourself.

    Keep the good attitude….

    Time for a pickle. Thanks for the reminder.

    After you finish the LT100 next year, I’m going to find you at the finish line and ask you how much fun you had. (It generally takes me a couple days after a big race to realize I had any fun at all!) – FC

  13. Comment by Jason | 09.6.2012 | 12:48 pm

    If he were a “real man”, he would have raced in the open division…

  14. Comment by TK | 09.6.2012 | 12:49 pm

    This story helps remind me why I don’t race bikes or play in golf tournaments. They should be fun events, but there are always a few douche bags who take things way too seriously. They may be a little bit faster or better than me, but they just seem like losers with no life. I’d rather ride and golf with buddies than compete against anal-retentive wannabees.

    I need to be careful myself; I’ve been racing a ton lately and am right on the threshold of taking my results and self seriously. I need to remember: no matter how I do in my age group, the truly fast guys finish hours and hours and hours before me. – FC

  15. Comment by Sjw503 | 09.6.2012 | 12:49 pm

    When you look at the topo line it’s pretty obvious the terrain would naturally shift a rider off the course and back on. The moral of the story is that you can’t have enough ticker tape.

  16. Comment by Brian | 09.6.2012 | 12:55 pm

    Huh. My google image curiosity just indicated me that call-a-meeting guy might not have made the podium after the adjustment. Were you and Eric the only ones thought to have missed that section of course or were you the only two that acknowledged the mistake?

  17. Comment by Luis vasconcelos | 09.6.2012 | 12:55 pm

    All these years following your blog, buying the jerseys, acquiring the book to read the same stories all over again (do admit -enjoying them all over again) and I discover you are a cheat ! Oh dear me, Elden you should be ashamed of yourself… As a punidhment sit by the the mail, I’m sending you a pickle jar of fine portuguese pickles. Shame on you !! And try to keep your mouth shut, there is nothing worse than a sashaying bald paunchy cyclist with a open mouth. Luis

    You forgot “short.” – FC

  18. Comment by LeadBoy | 09.6.2012 | 12:57 pm

    It’s a Strava eats Strava world out there.

  19. Comment by The Flyin' Ute | 09.6.2012 | 1:01 pm

    That story was so good that I’m glad I missed that race!

  20. Comment by Tim | 09.6.2012 | 1:04 pm

    Weird. You look completely different in profile.

    Even though I’ve never met you, I’d recognize you if we passed each other in opposite directions. (“Hey, there’s that Fat Rider guy!” I’d say to myself.)

    If we passed each other going the same direction, I’d never in a million years recognize you. (I guess I’d say to myself “Who’s that Fat Rider guy?”)

  21. Comment by Liz | 09.6.2012 | 1:13 pm

    Wow, so sorry it turned into a bummer for all involved. I was officiating at a marathon many years ago. Apparently, the “official” race map given to the volunteers who set up the course was wrong. The accurate map only existed in the brain of the governing body official, who decided to drive his station wagon around the course AFTER the front runners had already gone through. We course marshals were desperately trying to change the pylons under his direction while the next bunch of runners came through. Thank goodness there was a burly, no-nonsense police officer with me at my post because the runners were unhappy and getting a little threatening. These are never good situations, but assuming bad faith on anyone’s part doesn’t help.

    Hope your next race goes better!

    Oh, but everything was actually fantastic. It was an incredible adventure and an intense race. I loved it. Drama after the race doesn’t cancel out the extraordinary greatness of the race itself. – FC

  22. Comment by Ed | 09.6.2012 | 1:16 pm

    Fatty (aka Dirty Rotten Scoundrel!)

    First of all, great write-up! It’s always a pleasure to read your race reports.

    Second, other than the weather, the PCP2P looks like an awesome race and great place to ride.

    Finally, congrats to you and The Hammer on a great performance (even if you didn’t come in third). Especially to The Hammer!

    There’s a reason that race sold out in (no exaggeration) 6 minutes for 2012. It will go every bit as fast for 2013, too. It’s the premier endurance event in this area. – FC

  23. Comment by Dan in Sac | 09.6.2012 | 1:23 pm

    Loved the story. That’s heckuva lot of drama for a Saturday bike race. Isn’t it all for the joy of riding anyway? Congrats to you and the Hamma’!

  24. Comment by centurion | 09.6.2012 | 1:25 pm

    “Well what are you doing here?” She replied. “Go out and save her!”

    Chastened, I left the tent. Not to save The Hammer — because there was no way I was getting back on my bike and heading up that mountain — but to go change into some dry clothes I had cleverly put in a drop bag and were thus now waiting for me at the finish line.

    You sir, are a cad!

  25. Comment by Keighty | 09.6.2012 | 1:26 pm

    Imagine what this race would have been in the Pre-Strava era.

    I actually have thought about that, except more in terms of “pre-Garmin era” than “pre-Strava” era.

    If I had not had a GPS tracking my race, I would still be claiming, in good conscience, that I took 3rd in the pathetic middle age man category. THOSE PICKLES WOULD STILL BE MINE, DAMMIT. – FC

  26. Comment by rob W | 09.6.2012 | 1:28 pm

    thanks for the write up! Enjoy the pickles!

  27. Comment by TK | 09.6.2012 | 1:37 pm

    Brotip: If companies pay you to ride their equipment, pay for your travel, entry fees, etc…you should take races seriously. If you pay bike companies to ride their equipment, pay for your own travel, entry fees, etc…chill the “F” out.

    Oh dear. I’d better start training. – FC

  28. Comment by Bub | 09.6.2012 | 1:49 pm

    I present you Mr. Stockham:

    Address and link deleted so David doesn’t start getting weird birthday cards and stuff. – FC

  29. Comment by Kyle | 09.6.2012 | 1:51 pm

    Makes me appreciate the job the BreckEpic guys did with their markings. I’m sure that is a monumental task for any of these longer course races.

    The distance compounded with the weather compounded with the course-shortening really gave the PCP2P folks a lot to deal with; they did an admirable job.

    And I’ve never seen the equal of the Breck Epic course markings. SIX DAYS of singletrack course markings and I never had a problem! Wow.

    I’ve lately gained a whole new appreciation for race promoters and the work they do. It takes an unusually hard-working and details-oriented visionary to successfully pull off a race. Unless it’s the 100 Miles of Nowhere, of course, in which case you can be a total goofball and still have it work. – FC

  30. Comment by bob | 09.6.2012 | 1:52 pm


    Are we going to have to change the website to FastCyclist?? Great race. “Beating Fatty” is getting harder and harder! Draper wasn’t on my radar, but after that beating you gave me, I might just have to come down and give it a go!


    P.S. Thanks for the great race report (that i demanded at the racer meeting), I laughed my a$$ off in Part III.

    Glad you liked it. See you in a couple weekends! – FC

  31. Comment by Mark | 09.6.2012 | 1:57 pm

    Yep, the drama was better than the race – maybe a future post or story will describe the riding (and The Hammer’s too). Anyway, you handled it very well, even with keeping the pickles! I totally agree with the “don’t take it so seriously” line of thought. In the local road races or criteriums, those guys ruthlessly sprinting for a pair of socks or Clif bar have caused massive pileups, which are definitely no fun. My racing days now are very selective, almost to being nonexistent anymore.

  32. Comment by kjd | 09.6.2012 | 1:57 pm

    Bub, From looking at the facebook posts and the results, it wasn’t Dave Stockham who was the racer-meeting-calling guy, Dave was just the got who was the new third, so it is not too nice to call him out.

    Bub was just giving me his address so I could send David his stuff, not to call him out. I.e., Bub was doing the five minutes of research I probably should have done. In other words, everything’s cool. – FC

  33. Comment by Barefoot Rose | 09.6.2012 | 2:03 pm

    Is it just me or does the trail map look like The Grinch is holding a Christmas tree?

    That guy is just jealous because he recognized you from your days on TV and how you look like some famous blogger.

    The Hammer is still my idol.

    Mine too. She did an 18-mile run 2 days after this race. – FC

  34. Comment by Brian in VA | 09.6.2012 | 2:06 pm

    Great write up, Fatty.

    I’d like to point out that your slack jawed methodology is actually speed producing. Really good metal guitar players find that when they open their mouths and keep them jaw muscles loose, they are able to play much after licks. I expect the same is true when cycling and that you’re simply cranking faster as a result. Is this a recent innovation you’ve developed? If so, it’s clearly working for you.

    I’ve had to stop it around here, in Virginia, because the bug population was dwindling and I was getting way too much protein.

    I’m very glad that you take yourself seriously enough to race and not so seriously that you’re a swinging richard about it. We could easily be friends!

  35. Comment by Brian in VA | 09.6.2012 | 2:07 pm

    blasted auto correct. It’s much faster licks and their jaw muscles.

  36. Comment by kjd | 09.6.2012 | 2:10 pm

    Oh sorry about the misinterpretation bub, when I first read the report I thought it must of been David who was the racer meeting guy, since he was the one who became third after the adjustments, but after looking on the facebook page I realized it wasn’t so I thought you had made the same mistake.

  37. Comment by dug | 09.6.2012 | 2:20 pm

    The truth is you’re the weak. And I’m the tyranny of evil men. But I’m tryin, Ringo. I’m tryin’ real hard to be the shepherd.

    I knew you would catch that. – FC

  38. Comment by Doug (way upstate NY) | 09.6.2012 | 2:31 pm

    Fatty, you promised I would have fun at Leadville! If I don’t I will have Noah find you and give you a piece of his mind. Cause I’m most likely going to be like the Hammer after the race. Too blown to talk, sitting and crying……

    Btw. I’m already having fun with Leadville 2013 :)

  39. Comment by Ferde | 09.6.2012 | 2:35 pm

    Great race report I really have enjoyed reading these, keep them coming! All you can do is laugh at someone who takes age group results so seriously. Really the winner and top placers where in the open division so who cares that much about age group results but you did the right thing.

  40. Comment by James | 09.6.2012 | 2:36 pm

    Some people buy Corvette’s when the mid life crisis hits… others take their RECREATIONAL activities or sports way TOO SERIOUSLY. Glad to see you’re taking the whole exchange with the grain of salt it needed.

  41. Comment by Team Coffee Nook | 09.6.2012 | 2:36 pm

    I prefer to traipse than shashay, although my wife says both modes of bipedal locomotion are unacceptable.

    How about ambling? Is it ok to amble? – FC

  42. Comment by Christina | 09.6.2012 | 2:43 pm

    I like that the Draper Fall Classic appears to go through the temple. “Jello to the right, bathrooms on the left.”

    This is where I’m glad I’m never fast enough to need to worry about things like this. #fastinshapepeopleproblems


  43. Comment by Jay Burke | 09.6.2012 | 2:45 pm

    Elden: exceptional 3 part report on the race. I love your attitude and I hope you can motivate the Hammer to come back for another go at it. I’m going to get you a case of Yeehaw Pickles for all your troubles!

    Jay Burke

    Thanks, Jay. And please tell the Yee-haw Pickles guys that their Garlic Dills have been delicious. – FC

  44. Comment by mark | 09.6.2012 | 2:48 pm

    Good thing Jason Sparks called a meeting so that he could move from 9th to 8th. That’s huge. Just curious, was he wearing his national champion jersey?

  45. Comment by Kukui | 09.6.2012 | 2:54 pm

    I’m so glad you had such a great race, Fatty! Some folks take themselves WAY too seriously.

    And, WHOA! The Hammer is ridiculous! In the coolest, most awesome package ridiculousness comes in! =)

  46. Comment by roan | 09.6.2012 | 3:00 pm

    Still an awesome ride. I think you should start putting ‘Lord’ in front of Elden Nelson.
    The first pic of The Hammer without a smile. She doesn’t need a framed copy of this pic because the ride will be remembered by her 4ever.
    Such a ride builds character that will show up later when the two of you are challenging each other…and she turns on the speed and drops you in the sprint finish.

  47. Comment by bikemike | 09.6.2012 | 3:33 pm

    I like to just mosey on over to something. Kind of John Wayne style. It makes the massive wedgie i’m about to give people like old Mr. Fess-up-or-else that much more impressive.

  48. Comment by GP | 09.6.2012 | 3:36 pm

    First time reader, I loved the write-up on P2P. My buddies said you were describing the midlife crisis category, of which I was a part, and I had to tune in. What a day! Except for a select few, these races are always a personal quest to conquer or survive some course. Preferably the faster the better to end the suffering earlier. See you on the trails!

    “Endurance is not just the ability to bear a hard thing, but to turn it into glory.”
    -William Barclay

  49. Comment by Bobby | 09.6.2012 | 3:42 pm

    You forgot the number 1 rule of cheating…never upload your GPS track to a publicly accessible website. You’re such a noob!

  50. Comment by Bobby | 09.6.2012 | 3:42 pm

    Oops…I meant YOUR such a noob!

  51. Comment by SteveB | 09.6.2012 | 4:12 pm

    Thoroughly enjoyed this writeup… Notice that The Hammer also has her mouth slightly open – I think we’ve exposed the secret to all your success…

  52. Comment by LidsB2 | 09.6.2012 | 4:18 pm

    So, I hope The Hammer wasn’t affected by the crazy person described in this news story. Not cool. Not cool at all.


  53. Comment by Heidi | 09.6.2012 | 4:20 pm

    Aw geez, a no-smile photo shows it MUST have been a heckuva rough go for the Hammer. That she took second is INCREDIBLE!

    Aren’t you glad you don’t share a name with a porn star?

  54. Comment by leroy | 09.6.2012 | 4:31 pm

    What was that line from the Godfather?

    Leave the gun, take the pickles?

    That doesn’t seem right.

    I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again. No one can ever take a good ride away from you. And that’s one of the things I love about riding.

  55. Comment by Eric | 09.6.2012 | 5:06 pm

    You are a fine and upstanding man Fatty. If you weren’t already married I’d introduce you to my sister. Thank you for sharing your stories with us.

  56. Comment by Leadboy | 09.6.2012 | 5:35 pm

    Fatty, were you the “want to get in a fight” dude? I bet you have mad kung fu skills.

    I am quite possibly the least “wanna fight” guy in the world. Except for my oldest son. He’s even mellower than I am. He’s so laid-back scientists want to study him. – FC

  57. Comment by Paul Guyot | 09.6.2012 | 5:45 pm


    I have spent enough time around REAL racers that guys like Sparks and others of his kind bore me. They are like Little League parents – dudes who never had the huevos or the talent to race for real. So they “race” in these type of things and pretend they are Todd Wells or Ryder Hesjedal.

    I am glad you are seeing how easy it is to take this crap too seriously. You are the crown prince and Grand Poobah of making sure we all remember why we ride (and race). So if you fall, we all fall.

    The Hammer… words do no justice.

    Also, I would love a post from you one day comparing PCP2P and Leadville. I think your perspective on what makes them similar and different and harder/easier would be fascinating reading.

    Lastly, I think, as a way to say thank you to and honor David Stockham and his effort, you and The Hammer should sit back tonight and watch this:


  58. Comment by rabidrunner | 09.6.2012 | 5:46 pm

    I’m particularly fond of your cheesecake analogy. Very clever. It’s kind of how I feel about any activity that spans five hours or more.

    P.S. My first name, middle name and last name are the same as a very famous porn star. It’s one of the reasons I use “Rabid” instead. I mean, what porn star would pick “Rabid” as a name? The old me would have raced on over to google to see for sure, but the new me, one who’s dealt with this life of “NO! I’m not her!” will refrain from looking for a porn star named Rabid.

    Since I know your actual name, I could google that porn star. Since The Hammer is looking over my shoulder right now, I will not. – FC

  59. Comment by Laura S | 09.6.2012 | 5:57 pm

    What a soap opera! Great write up. So…when is the Hammer going pro?

  60. Comment by nh_joe | 09.6.2012 | 6:32 pm

    It sounds like meeting-calling-guy was a jerk, but to be fair, I think he deserves some defense. When I’m racing (and am near the front) I keep tabs on who got ahead of me. If he was in the top five it’s pretty easy to remember the four guys in front of you. It’s especially important when categories get mixed and one needs to recognize whom they are racing against. I think it’s perfectly reasonable to assume that he knew you were not one of the riders in front of him, and was rightfully upset when the results did not reflect that. Perhaps the fatigue and adrenaline at the end of the day turned him into a jerk, and that’s not cool, but just to assume that his thinking was, “there’s no way I got beat by Fatty,” isn’t fair.

    I think it’s awesome that you look for the best in people. That’s an attribute that everyone should adopt. Including me, obviously. – FC

  61. Comment by sdcadbiker | 09.6.2012 | 6:35 pm

    Best race report since “Louis”.

    I hope this report shows that I’ve learned something since the “Louis” report. – FC

  62. Comment by Michael | 09.6.2012 | 7:24 pm

    Bummer you had to deal with that, Fatty. Some folks in this world are diplomacy challenged.

    In the tactless guy’s defense, he probably based his whole year (and his entire self-esteem) around that race. I’d love to fault him, but I’ve totally done that before. It’s such a not-fun way to approach life.

  63. Comment by Clydesteve | 09.6.2012 | 7:27 pm

    Fatty – it does show that you have learned something since ‘Louis’. Well played.

    And, I really liked the quip about the 20-something vitamin water girl. We dirty, sweaty, paunchy middle-aged men always need to be aware of the need to bludgeon off the young girls. For their sake.

  64. Comment by Sara | 09.6.2012 | 7:49 pm

    Too bad Zazoosh didn’t capture a picture of the “sashaying.” I’m thinking that would’ve been slack-jaw picture numero cinco on this post. I mean, can one sashay without their face being in a complete state of relaxation?

    PS: How awesome are you and The Hammer?

  65. Comment by Lance | 09.6.2012 | 7:54 pm

    Meeting guy must of been doping!

  66. Comment by roan | 09.6.2012 | 9:18 pm

    To The Hammer, do you keep your race plates ?
    This one is worth its weight in blood no make that…mud, sweat, and sad to say…tears.
    A very well earned race plate.

    We staple our race plates to the garage wall. I’ll post a pic sometime. – FC

  67. Comment by KanyonKris | 09.6.2012 | 10:54 pm

    No, my wife is the nicest person in the world because as I watched her read this post she didn’t roll her eyes and mutter “oh please”. And she only laughed at Elden’s jokes.

  68. Comment by Aaron Harrell | 09.7.2012 | 12:21 am

    I always thought that your use of the words “awesome” and “awesomeness” were extravagant. I am pretty sure that’s because you are awesome in your awesomeness. Ride on Fatty!

  69. Comment by Trey | 09.7.2012 | 5:03 am

    Hello? I am still waiting for someone to take my pee sample. Is anyone out there?

  70. Comment by Kent E | 09.7.2012 | 7:25 am

    Great report. I cannot help but notice The Hammer’s post race reaction was very similar to your’s after your first PCP2P finish last year.

  71. Comment by Jenni | 09.7.2012 | 9:02 am


  72. Comment by Pat | 09.7.2012 | 10:03 am

    Maybe as a show of good faith, you could send the guy a “I’m faster than fatty” t-shirt.

  73. Comment by Steve | 09.7.2012 | 10:26 am

    Oh Pat, I like that idea. Fatty you have to send the guy a “Faster than Fatty” t-shirt.

  74. Comment by davidh-marin, ca | 09.7.2012 | 11:00 am

    @Roan We already knew of The Hammer’s character. She agreed to marry a middle aged, paunchy, balding,short guywho doesn’t like to run. Now that’s character!

    Faster than Fatty T Shirt size small!

    This has been the BEST(multi part)POST ever!since Leadville 2012) and the comments have been great as well. Plan on pickles next year at Davis (is there a recipe for pickle pie?) Lastly, what would it take to get Zazoosh at Davis as our own personal photo crew???? Best pictures I have seen of racers/riders.

  75. Comment by davidh-marin, ca | 09.7.2012 | 11:12 am

    They are referred to as ’slow moving giants’ I’m not sure it’s a completely apt description but they do share a certain ’slack jawed’ similarity.


  76. Comment by davidh-marin, ca | 09.7.2012 | 11:18 am

    Second attempt


  77. Comment by davidh-marin, ca | 09.7.2012 | 11:33 am

    Third time’s a charm? Also note the similarity in their ’spotty’ character:


  78. Comment by ScottR | 09.7.2012 | 11:33 am

    Respect, Fatty. Congrats on your ride, and thanks for the writeups, as always.

    I’ll keep considering it a penalty for not riding singlespeed. :-)

    Let me know if you need my address, since you have my helmet and all.

  79. Comment by Tominalbany | 09.7.2012 | 12:53 pm

    @davidh – Nice whale shark!

    @TheHammer – awesome ride! Great job!

    @Fatty – it would seem you manned up at the race and after the race. No one has any reason to complain!

    Cutting the course: Sounds like the disgraced non-winner of a TdF about 100 years ago. They took the train to ’shorten the course.’ Admit it, you took the train! LOL

  80. Comment by GenghisKhan | 09.7.2012 | 1:27 pm

    @Fatty – I support the idea of sending that guy a “I’m Faster than Fatty” t-shirt! Great idea!

    @tominalbany – I like your “took the train” analogy; there’s gotta be a t-shirt in there somewhere for TwinSix – I figure a guy leaning out a train car door with a bike over his shoulder.

  81. Comment by Trailer Park Cyclist | 09.7.2012 | 3:16 pm

    It is a hard thing to be the better man. Or so I am told. I usually go ahead and Do the Wrong Thing. But I like to think I am getting better at it. (Not doing the wrong thing) Meanwhile, here the Fat Cyclist is: acting all grown up and making the Fatty Nation Proud.

    By sending Mr. Sparks that t-shirt you will undoubtedly gain a new friend and ultimately regret outing his acting career, even if he ain’t the guy. (Although it would be pretty cool if he was.)

    “No, son, I am NOT that guy in those dirty movies!”
    “But dad, he looks just like you! And all the other kids at cub scouts say…”

    I for one would be interested in hearing about his response. Will he send a thank you note? File a libel suit?

    Let me say this: you are a stars, now, you and the Hammer. It was hard earned and well deserved. We have watched you do it. And so, a little stardust can be spread by a friendly hand on the shoulder, a t-shirt in the mail, or a kind word.

    And yer just the guy to do it.


  82. Comment by Clammy Chamois | 09.7.2012 | 6:17 pm

    I have to say, I know the “porn star” in question exclusively from racing. He’s not a bad guy. And in the past few years has dropped an incredible amount of weight and started to win races.
    It is possible that he got a smidge overzealous. Your description of the events was funny as hell.
    Congrats on a killer ride.
    Oh, and +1 on the Kanyon Kris observation. He was still there supporting when I rolled in SEVERAL HOURS LATER.

  83. Comment by Ha | 09.7.2012 | 10:04 pm

    Maybe you can run the marathon with Lance…oh wait, scratch that.

  84. Comment by Bicycle Bill | 09.8.2012 | 5:44 am

    “How about ambling? Is it ok to amble? – FC”

    only until Spielberg comes after you for violating his trademark on “Amblin™” : lol :


  85. Comment by Kenny | 09.8.2012 | 11:58 am

    The only thing that’s changed is that I used to finish ahead of you when you cut the course. It couldn’t be that you actually are faster than me now.

  86. Comment by Mel | 09.8.2012 | 9:18 pm

    This whole drama would have never occurred if the race director, jay, had made it clear that the results would be corrected after the “first place” finisher told him that he hadn’t completed the entire course. Instead it appears he tried to hope the issue would go away a nd in the meantime this drama erupted. If it weren’t for the guy who made this an issue, the same guy you are ridiculing, the results would remain inaccurate, and the real 1st place wouldn’t have collected his 275 dollars. You really have it all wrong. If you are going to bag on anyone, it should be how jay didn’t take the right course of action.

  87. Comment by FatChickonaBike | 09.8.2012 | 9:56 pm

    Mel, I think you’re kinda missing the point two ways:
    1) It’s not raising an issue that’s being ridiculed here- it’s HOW you raise an issue and how you behave afterwards when it’s not resolved to your satisfaction. Congratulating someone to their face and telling the race organizer to his face you’re ok with his decision – then loudly complaining you’ve been f**cked and running your mouth on Facebook – that’s Tool not Cool, and deserves some bagging.

    I don’t think the organizers changed their mind because of Facebook drama, they changed their mind because the same situation impacted the pro standings and had to be resolved there, so the same resolution was applied across the board (see link in Fatty’s post)

    2) There is no “right course of action” in this unfortunate circumstance, because absent a requirement that all racers GPS-track and map their course, it’s impossible to tell who cut the course and who didn’t. So people who mapped and ‘fessed up may be penalized while people who cut and didn’t map (or didn’t ‘fess up) now finish ahead of them after the penalty time.

    I seriously doubt Mr. Meeting raised the issue because he hoped to move from 9th to 8th. He’d finished 3rd last year, right? and prolly thought he’d done as well or better this year. And maybe he did-we’ll never know now. In any event, Fatty is correct-race organizers do an incredible thankless job and in no circs deserve to be “bagged on”.

    Full disclosure: I don’t know any of these people in person and have no association with PCP2P organizers

  88. Comment by ltuck | 09.9.2012 | 10:04 am

    You make me smile, Fatty! I was cheering for you at the Silver Strike aid station!

  89. Comment by Carl | 09.9.2012 | 4:17 pm

    IF you were a dirty rotten scoundrel, you would have dismissed that guy with a “Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries.” Besides, I looked at his facebook page, you have bigger quads.

  90. Comment by Jenni | 09.9.2012 | 7:02 pm

    Oh em gee. I’m faster than fatty tshirt MUST happen. MUST

  91. Comment by Rob L | 09.10.2012 | 9:21 am

    And thats why racing is lame these days, fault abounds all around and two faced a-holes are less of what we need. It sounds like the issue is more a poorly marked course, it happens. Were they marking times at Aid Stations/check points? sigh. You get the win for man points and not being a two faced Eldin. He’s back to the cub scouts.

  92. Comment by Bill | 09.10.2012 | 12:42 pm

    Great series of articles. As to the race protest, in the words of Uncle Rico, “if coach had just put me in we could have won state!”

  93. Comment by Mel | 09.10.2012 | 9:01 pm

    To fatchickonsbike. You really do sound like your shilling for the race organizers. You say it’s a “thankless job”. Sorry, 150 dollars is more than enough of a thank you. You missed my point. The 1st place rider told Jay that he didn’t do the entire course and was still despite this given the prize money and told not to worry about it. In any universe, that is not the right course of action. He should’ve just said “we’ve got an issue and because of this were delaying announcing the results.” Further, we shouldn’t focus/bag on the guy who brings the truth to light.

  94. Comment by AKChick55 | 09.12.2012 | 11:51 am

    Um, Mel, YOU are missing the point. Fatchickonabike called it correctly. Please don’t try to say I’m a schill for the race. I live in Alaska. I barely ride my mountain bike (more of a roadie or cross chick) and I had never heard of this race before this blog post.

    It tells ALLOT about someone’s character (or lack thereof) by how they react in certain situations. The racer who was a complete douche, wasn’t a douche because he called the meeting, it was because he was a douche in the manner in which he pursued it. You don’t have to be a douche to get things corrected. You can be a gentleman or a lady about it and not go around posting crap on Facebook (so cowardly) and telling someone to their face you are okay with the decision and in the same day, tell someone else you got “f**ked. I’m sorry. The dude was wrong and he is a douche who takes himself way too seriously. HE is the reason why cyclists get a bad name and are looked down upon. Some manners would serve him well.

  95. Comment by AKChick55 | 09.12.2012 | 11:52 am

    Also, Mel – it’s okay to be a complete douche for prize money???? WTF? There is NO excuse to be a douche. EVER.

  96. Comment by Dave Stockham | 09.13.2012 | 4:16 pm

    Fatty and all. Big hugs. Very fun day, very tough race.

    With pride, my daughter (6) tells everyone, I won a jar of pickles. She loves pickles…I must admit, they were very tasty.

    Cool article today on Utah High School Cycling League:


  97. Comment by L'Hippo | 09.17.2012 | 8:44 pm

    Too funny, especially the scene in the vitamin water tent. Can’t wait until the next one.


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