The 2012 GranDonut Race Report

10.1.2012 | 12:27 pm

P9280461.JPGI have had some interesting experiences, thanks to this blog. For example, I have been to France. And Africa. And even Oregon. I have ridden and raced in a surprising variety of places, and I have met some extraordinary people.

But if, a couple years ago, you had told me something like the following, I’d have thought you were absolutely nuts:

One day, Fatty, you will challenge Levi Leipheimer to a race. In order to even the odds at that race, you will demand that a donut-eating competition will be an integral part of that race. Levi will accept the challenge without even batting an eye, in spite of the fact that you are writing all the rules and stakes of the challenge, and are clearly slanting them so far in your own favor that he has little or no chance to win.

As the day of that race approaches, Fatty, more people will join the race. Rebecca Rusch, a cycling hero of both you and your wife, will join . . . once she realizes Patrick Dempsey is also on board (!!!). Tom Danielson will join, without even batting an eye. And then Kristin Armstrong — an Olympic champion! — will even sign on, once you have promised that she will have the option of eating a healthy alternative to donuts.

Reading this now, I am still astonished. No, I’m not astonished that I would ask Levi to engage in an eating contest with me, under the guise of it being a race.

No, I’m also not astonished that I would rig the rules so that my chances of losing were practically nil. Frankly, that’s all perfectly in-character for me. Indeed, it’s a little bit astonishing that I didn’t make this kind of challenge until now.

What’s amazing — no, what’s completely and utterly unbelievable — is that Levi accepted the challenge at all.

I mean, just look at the physics of the thing, for crying out loud. I made it perfectly clear that — should I choose — I could eat more than a dozen donuts in the heat of battle. And there is simply no way Levi could eat even half that many.

Just look at the difference between the two of us, for pity’s sake:

Levi & Elden 862A9089 copy.jpg

Levi never had a chance. There was. Just. No. Way.

And so, for the first time in my life, I slept well the night before a race (without using Ambien or Melatonin or anything). For the first time in my life, I began a race calmly, knowing the outcome with absolute certainty.

Knowing that, if I needed to, I could eat more donuts than everyone on the other team, combined.

But I’m getting ahead of myself now.

The Night Before The Race

As a beloved and multi-award-winning cycle-bloggging (I just added the third “g” because I feel like what I write deserves more than two “g’s”) celebrity, I was of course invited to the Festa Del Fondo — a dinner / fundraising auction to raise money for LiveStrong, VeloStreet, and Forget-Me-Not Farms — on Thursday night.

But I wasn’t there to bid on auctions. I was there to strategize with my teammates: Kristin Armstrong and Tom Danielson.

To my delight, They both seemed to have team strategy on their minds, too.

“You’re not that fat,” Tom said.

Why does everyone have to include “that” when they make that observation? I asked myself.

“How many donuts can you eat?” Tom asked me.

“Thirteen is my record,” I replied. “But I’m willing to push myself to fifteen. You?”

“I don’t know,” said Tom. I looked at him dubiously, making my own estimate. Four seemed like a good upper limit for him.

“How do we eat them fast?” Tom asked. I had to admit that I really didn’t have a good answer for that.

“Drink water to help wash them down,” I offered, both obviously and lamely.”

“We’ll experiment tomorrow,” Tom said.

“Don’t worry, we’re going to win,” I assured him.

“Don’t get cocky, kid,” Tom warned me. “Don’t go thinking the race is a sure thing.”

I apologized, realizing that Tom was pretending to take this as seriously as I was.

“And,” Tom said, with so much emphasis that I was taken aback, “There is no way Kristin Armstrong is eating any rice cakes in this race, OK? This is a donut race.”

“But she only agreed to participate in the race on the condition that she not have to eat any donuts,” I offered, lamely.

No. Rice. Cakes,” Tom asserted, in tones that brooked no dissent.

I retreated.

Shortly later, I came across Kristin Armstrong. “Hey,” I said, “Tom says . . . “

“Thirty seconds per rice cake seems like a good time bonus,” Kristin said.

“Yeah, but . . .”

“I’m just glad I don’t have to eat any donuts,” Kristin finished.

I began to sense that my team captaincy was anything but effectual.

So I made an appeal to authority. Specifically, I went to Fondo Honcho Greg Fisher. “Tom’s taking a hard line on donuts and says there’s no way Kristin is going to get to eat rice cakes,” I said. “And Kristin says she definitely is not eating donuts. What do I do?” I asked.

“All I know is that I’m not staying up making rice cakes tonight,” replied Greg, reasonably. “If there are going to be rice cakes, I don’t know where they’re coming from.”

And that, in the end, was the deciding factor. Problem solved, simply by not bringing stuff.

Just Before the Race

Friday morning arrived. And then Friday morning left, without anything of note occurring.

I offer the previous paragraph merely for the sake of completeness.

Around noon, I showed up at the race venue, which was . . . the corner of a parking lot. No, that’s not where the race began, that’s where the entire race would be held.

You see, you don’t need a huge race course when the bikes that everyone would be racing are the following:


Yep, 12″ toddler bikes. Which — as I seem to have accidentally neglected to tell any of my competition — was the plan all along.

Greg — the Fondo Honcho — and I tried riding the bikes seated:


Absolutely impossible.

They can, however, be ridden — sort of — if you stand up and pedal, as Levi figured out when he arrived and tried out a couple test laps:

Levi Race On 862A9071 copy.jpg

Near Disaster

Next, Tom Danielson arrived, ready to ride. He started doing a fast test lap, getting a feel for the tiny bikes.

Tom Danialson Race Bike 862A9070 copy.jpg

As the father of young children, Tom exuded confidence in his tiny bike riding prowess and ripped around the course. I did my best to keep up.

And that’s when everything went sideways.

Flying up the straightaway, Tom rode up the short wooden ramp from the parking lot to the sidewalk. He hit the ramp fast, pedaling hard. Tom hit the top of the ramp at speed — and did an unintentional wheelie, which quickly turned into a hard fall right onto his tailbone.

Tom rolled around on the pavement, howling in unfeigned pain.

I am ashamed to admit it, but my first thought was, “Oh great. My joke race is going to send Tom Danielson to the hospital. Jonathan Vaughters is going to kill me.”

Yes, I started thinking about Tom Danielson’s career-affecting injury in terms of how it affected me that quickly. I apologize for being who I am.

Anyway, not wanting to kill, maim, or otherwise hurt the folks who had been generous enough to show up at this race, we made a quick course adjustment, eliminating the ramp altogether.

And there were sighs of relief all around.

Pre-Race Conference

Soon, the rest of the racers appeared. Rebecca Rusch showed up in a skinsuit and TT helmet, clearly looking for every advantage she could:

Rebecca Rush 862A9120 copy.jpg

Next, Kristin Armstrong arrived and demonstrated how she intended to win the day by riding in an aero position:

Kristin Mental Mapping 862A9167 copy.jpg

To my relief, she did not even ask about rice cakes.

Finally — and let’s face it, what 89% of the ladies in the audience were waiting for — Patrick Dempsey appeared, ready to ride:

Patrick & Rebecca 862A9179 copy.jpg

And, of course, there was me:


Yep, I was eating a donut during the team presentation.

I was that unconcerned.

Tension Mounts

As with any Very Important bike race, the GranDonut Race began with a press conference, where we answered very serious questions with very serious answers.

Elden, Levi, Rebecca & Patrick862A9202 copy.jpg

Mostly, I remember that it was my job to describe what the stakes of the race were during this press conference, and I — being feeble of mind — was entirely unable to remember anything other than the most important thing: If Levi’s team lost, he had to wear a propeller beanie for the rest of the weekend.

It didn’t matter though, because things got ugly very fast: a fistfight broke out between the two women competitors:

Kristen & Rebecca Dual 862A9117 copy.jpg

I don’t believe there’s a single person in the world who would not have put their money on Rebecca in this fight, but we’d never find out, because Rod Martin — the Race Director of the Utah Tour de Donut who had graciously come to the GranDonut relay to ensure that all protocol were correctly followed — pulled them apart before things could get too nasty.

Rod then gave the racers some last minute instructions:

Ron, Patrick & Levi 862A9098 copy.jpg

These instructions were as follows:

  • Any donuts spat out or otherwise not eaten do not count
  • Each donut counts for a minute subtracted off race time
  • One racer per team in the DOZONE (the donut-eating zone) or on the course at a time

There may have been other rules. Nobody really paid attention, honestly.

Then Dave Towle — famous and extremely cool bike race commentator and announcer — held the microphone while I sang the national anthem:


No, not really. It just kinda looks like that’s what I was doing.

But enough jibber-jabber. It was time to race.


And eat. Especially eat.

The Race

The race began with the pro women squaring off.


Kristin, obviously, was super-excited to be in a donut-eating contest.

Still, when the gun went off, the competitive instincts took over, and both of them crammed donuts into their mouths with reckless abandon:



To my surprise, neither of them ate more than one or two donuts before taking off. Clearly, I was going to show these people how it was done.

Kristin came in from her first lap at top speed, wiping out as she tagged Tom Danielson. But it was obvious that any abrasions she had suffered were of merely secondary importance to her.


She was fighting hard to keep that one donut down.

Rebecca was feeling it, too:


Meanwhile, Patrick and Tom were now digging in.


That’s why he’s called “McDreamy,” kiddos.

Tom Danielson set a record for how many donuts he could stuff into his mouth, figuring he could take care of the chewing and swallowing part at his leisure, after he rode his lap:


I’m pretty sure that’s three donuts right there.

But as Tom rode, there was drama in the pit area.


Levi was sufferening PTDCD (Post Traumatic Donut Consumption Disorder). Fortunately, Levi had a teammate who plays a doctor on TV:


“Give us a sign,” he plead. “Please, Levi, give us a sign you’re OK!”


A thumbs-up. What a relief.

Thanks to Patrick’s quick thinking, I believe that Levi will make a full recovery.

Wherein I Make the Obvious Become Startlingly Obvious

Tom came in from his first lap, at which point, thanks to Tom’s ability to unhinge his jaw and stuff a remarkable number of donuts in — we had a substantial (but not insurmountable) lead.

I aimed to change that.

I walked slowly to the table, planted my feet squarely on the ground, took four donuts in hand, and accordioned them together into a single non-airy mass.

I took a bite, took a swig of water. Chewed. Swallowed.

I repeated.

Before long, I had dispatched my first four donuts.

Everyone expected me to go out and ride. I did not ride.

I remained where I was and ate another two donuts.

Six donuts. And I knew I could do more. I was prepared to do more.

“OK, Fatty, that’s enough,” Rod said. “Nobody’s going to touch that. Head on out on your lap.”

And I was off on my first lap, riding with the same intensity I had brought to my eating:


I was awe-inspiring. It’s as simple as that.


By the time we finished the race, the words “blowout” would come to mind. The scorekeepers’ records tell the tale:



Team Fatty won by nearly seven minutes / donuts.

But really, Levi was the real winner here, because he got to wear an awesome new hat:



See how happy he is to be wearing that?

Elden & levi 862A9469 copy.jpg

Just like in the special olympics, though, nobody went home without a prize, thanks to Rod, who had participant plaques made for everyone.

Here’s post-race pose one:


And here’s pose #2, where I show the stomach of victory:


Click on that image above (if you dare) to see the look of horror on everyone’s faces.

Tom, at least, was not afraid to give me the respect I deserve:



As was stipulated in the rules of the challenge, Levi did indeed wear the propeller beanie at the start of the Gran Fondo the next day. However, it “accidentally” fell off within about ten feet of the beginning of the ride.

Luckily for him, Angie G — an Absolute Best Friend of Fatty Forever and Ever — was volunteering at the event and rescued it, so that as Levi and I were sitting on stage together after the ride, presenting awards to people who had gone above and beyond in their fundraiser efforts, I was able to return his hat back to him.

Naturally, Levi was very pleased to be able to wear it again.


What We Did

Was this a ridiculous event? Of course. Was it entirely staged from the beginning? Perhaps. Did it put amazing people in embarrassing and maybe even undignified situations?


But we also raised north of $12,000, to be split among Forget-Me-Not Farms, LiveStrong, and VeloStreet.

So in the end, here’s the tally:

One silly race, thirty four donuts, twelve thousand dollars, three great causes, and hundreds of people donating mostly because it’s the nice thing to do (and a little bit because you might win something; I’ll announce winners soon!).

Not to mention one huge debt of gratitude to four top pro cyclists and one top pro actor, each gracious enough to play along with a ridiculous joke.

I like those numbers.

PS: Many people have asked me if there will be a video. And the answer is yes. But I’m not the one making it. I will, however, post either the video itself or a link to it as soon as it’s available.

PPS: Here’s the video:


  1. Comment by Don Davis | 10.1.2012 | 12:42 pm

    WELL DONE SIR !!!!!! ( and huge props to the supporting cast)

  2. Comment by Tominalbany | 10.1.2012 | 12:46 pm

    Mr. Nelson? Your disappointment at the use of the word ‘that’ when referencing your girth, or lack thereof is fully supported by the post-race, profile photo!

    I also want to thank you for the excellent tip, should I ever enter a donut contest with someone NOT nicknamed ‘Fatty.’ Squashing the air out of them is nothing short of brilliance!

    Well done, Sir Elden of Utah!

  3. Comment by Mellabella | 10.1.2012 | 12:49 pm

    My most favorite race report ever! Clearly, you are the doughnut eating KOM :)

  4. Comment by Jim D in IL | 10.1.2012 | 12:57 pm

    Bravo! Encore! Amazing!

    I am still laughing at the “McDreamy” adjective…

    Well done, Fatty, well done!

  5. Comment by ChristyMcB | 10.1.2012 | 12:59 pm

    Best race report ever!! Thanks for all the pictures.

  6. Comment by wharton_crew | 10.1.2012 | 1:01 pm

    This may be one of your best posts ever – and an amazing event write up to boot! The coup de grace was the ’stomach of victory’ picture. I threw up in my mouth and then laughed so hard that it out my nose….

    Thanks Fatty…

  7. Comment by Rob L | 10.1.2012 | 1:02 pm

    Pictures are worth a 1000 words.hahahahahahaha

  8. Comment by zac_in_ak | 10.1.2012 | 1:03 pm

    EPIC… but not surprising I had every confidence in your doughnut ability to crush the other team!

  9. Comment by mike | 10.1.2012 | 1:06 pm

    A supporting cast of amazing people that are really good sports!

  10. Comment by jon | 10.1.2012 | 1:06 pm

    Quite possibly the best twenty bucks I have ever spent. Period.

  11. Comment by GenghisKhan | 10.1.2012 | 1:08 pm

    Three words: A. Maze. Ing.

  12. Comment by Doug (way upstate NY) | 10.1.2012 | 1:10 pm

    Love that Rebecca came in a skin suit and aero helmet. Total laugh riot. Great idea, and nice that they were willing to play along!

  13. Comment by Dave T | 10.1.2012 | 1:11 pm

    Wow great post. Your ability to distend your stomach is amazing no wonder you won. Looking forward to the video or better yet maybe a repeat next year?

  14. Comment by Heidi | 10.1.2012 | 1:25 pm

    Fantastic race report! But – 89% of the women in the audience were there to see Patrick Dempsey? Don’t you think that number is a bit low?

  15. Comment by David | 10.1.2012 | 1:27 pm

    You were a confident man indeed, going with the kids bikes in a race with Levi. Did he have to lower the seat, or did you let him ride his own?

    Levi-Leipheimer-is-short jokes aside, congratulations on adding an extra layer of awesome to an event that is already chock full of it.

  16. Comment by zeeeter | 10.1.2012 | 1:34 pm

    What good sports you know Fatty. Congrats on the final tally!

  17. Comment by MukRider | 10.1.2012 | 1:44 pm

    Great race report! I love it when world class athletes prove that they are just as goofy as the rest of us :)

  18. Comment by Yannb | 10.1.2012 | 1:47 pm

    Fatty, the rides should have been recorded with Garmins so we could compare lap times in Strava.

  19. Comment by Bryan (not that one) | 10.1.2012 | 1:48 pm

    I see that Rebecca is standing next to Patrick in the post-race photo. :-D

    Congrats, Team Fatty!

  20. Comment by Erin | 10.1.2012 | 1:50 pm

    This is, by far, one of the funniest events (and commentary from said event) I have ever seen. EVER. I am now a huge fan of yours- who is McDreamy again??- and just might come to the GranFondo to see the 2nd Annual GranDonut race. Kudos for creating such outstanding entertainment to support such worthy organizations.

  21. Comment by NYCCarlos | 10.1.2012 | 1:50 pm

    I think next year, my 100MoN will be a donut race.

  22. Comment by TK | 10.1.2012 | 1:53 pm

    What…no Strava data?!

  23. Comment by Clydesteve | 10.1.2012 | 1:59 pm

    “…and the stomach of the hippopotamus!” Now THAT was a courageous pose, Fatty!

  24. Comment by Clydesteve | 10.1.2012 | 2:01 pm

    BTW, in the photo of you on the course, it looks like there was a photo-moto on the course at the same time??? Brilliant!

    Yes, a moto with spare wheels was on the course. Of course, the wheels were of a size not even remotely close to the kinds of wheels we were riding. But still. Props to Greg of BikeMonkey for that bit of hilarity. – FC

  25. Comment by Fat Cathy | 10.1.2012 | 2:02 pm

    Just awesome.

  26. Comment by Bob Johnson | 10.1.2012 | 2:04 pm

    Following this story on twitter and the blog was a highlight of my week. Congratulations on the fundraising and thanks for the entertainment. I confess, I split my small donation between the two teams. I will know in the future to never doubt Fatty.

  27. Comment by Diverkiwi | 10.1.2012 | 2:08 pm

    I agree… where is the Strava data for this??

    Also, loving the pic of McDreamy eating the doughnut! that is sooo being sent to a bunch of my friends!

    Great job putting on a great fundraising event!

    Oh and props to Angie G for jumping out there and making sure the beanie wasn’t lost! She so rocks!

  28. Comment by Clydesteve | 10.1.2012 | 2:08 pm

    oh, and could you give a review of the instrument package on those bikes? I don’t think I have seen a cluster like that at any of the local races.

  29. Comment by centurion | 10.1.2012 | 2:10 pm

    I’m not sure whom I now like more, more. Fatty for putting this together, Levi, Rebecca, Kristin, or McDreamy, for doing this silly stuff. My hat is off to all of you.

  30. Comment by Betsy | 10.1.2012 | 2:18 pm

    The Oregonian is wondering if the “win the day” is a Ducks reference, thus meaning Oregon really rubbed off on you! Congrats on the big bucks for great causes! Hilarious race report.

  31. Comment by Chad | 10.1.2012 | 2:37 pm

    Well done and much respect.

  32. Comment by Kukui | 10.1.2012 | 2:53 pm

    Kiddie Bikes!!!!

    Oh, what fun! This is probably my favorite race report ever! Levi, Tom, Rebeca, Kristin, and McDreamy are such sports for going along with all this! The Pre-GranFondo Donut Race should be an annual event. =)

  33. Comment by T | 10.1.2012 | 3:00 pm

    following all of this on your blog and twitter, i think tom danielson is one of my new favorite people. he seriously got into this which is AWESOME. plus he currently lives in boulder so technically he’s local (and therefore all the better for me. ;))

  34. Comment by Barefoot Rose | 10.1.2012 | 3:01 pm


  35. Comment by Angie G | 10.1.2012 | 3:04 pm

    I believe credit for the beanie save goes to Greg Fisher. He mistakenly brought it to packet pick up where Cheryl and I made sure it was properly returned to Levi in time for the Q&A. True Bike Monkey team spirit. At least now Levi will be more apt to properly thank Greg for the save, likely in the form of a head lock. :-)
    I love this event and it is made that much more awesome by Levi, Odessa and the Bike Monkey staff!!!!

  36. Comment by Susie H | 10.1.2012 | 3:15 pm

    a good time had by all…in looking at my pictures after the event, I found it astounding at the gathering of celebrity at such an event–and it was all just so normal! Well done, my friend!

  37. Comment by Christina | 10.1.2012 | 3:19 pm

    I think Tom is getting in position to catch your baby.

    I agree with NYCCarlos…next year is 100MoN/Virtual Tour de Donut.

  38. Comment by Vicki D | 10.1.2012 | 3:21 pm

    Great event!! You made my Fondo weekend when you stood in the Dozone cramming those four donuts into your mouth! Too much fun! Looking forward to next year’s race

  39. Comment by Anne D | 10.1.2012 | 3:35 pm

    I would like to suggest that Vicki D be invited to compete, as well. I have it on good authority that she can cram FIVE donuts in her mouth!

  40. Comment by Craig K | 10.1.2012 | 3:39 pm

    Hey thanks for the mention it never dawned on me that Oregon was a more exotic and strange place to visit then France or Africa.

    Loved the race report maybe next year I can make down there. I’d love to ride Levi’s Grand Fondo and maybe see the rematch.

  41. Comment by RodNeeds2Ride | 10.1.2012 | 3:46 pm

    Well told Sir! You guys, it was REALLY awesome that these high-caliber athletes and celebrities were good sports enough to do a crazy thing like this. Being a part of it was the highlight of my year. You just had to be there to fully appreciate the awesomeness, though I hope the video does it credit. One of a kind!

    Oh, and very nice to meet Angie G and DavidH-Marin, CA at the event – SUPERFATTIES!

    Let’s ALL get together next year for the Fondo, OK? Seriously, it is a kick in the pants.

  42. Comment by Yannb | 10.1.2012 | 3:49 pm

    I should add that I saw Patrick Dempsey at the first rest stop getting some ibuprofen from the medic tent to which i wanted to say: “i’m not a dr but i play one on tv”. Instead I asked him how many donuts he had eaten on friday, he responded laughing: “not enough to win”. And yes there were swarms of women wanting to pose with him for pics

  43. Comment by Dan M | 10.1.2012 | 3:51 pm

    WOW!!! “And here’s pose #2, where I show the stomach of victory:” Is it real? Or is it photoshop? I have tears in my eyes from laughing so hard. Thanks Fatty. A year ago, I was thinking you had to abandon and register I’m glad to see you have worked hard enough to retain the Fatty title.

  44. Comment by leroy | 10.1.2012 | 4:00 pm

    In the past, I’ve responded to photos of you by quoting that line from “Being There” about you looking smaller on television.

    After that profile pic of you post donut ride, I don’t think I can say that anymore.

    But I will proudly wear the 2013 FC kit knowing that if my profile is — ahem — less than optimal while at the same time greater than I’d prefer, it is part of a proud tradition.

    Congratulations on the win!

  45. Comment by hannah | 10.1.2012 | 4:00 pm

    Best. Race report. Ever. You all rock so hard. Mega props to Tommy D’s strategy, too. Way to embrace the spirit of the event.

    This was the first time I had met Tom Danielson, and he’s honestly one of the funniest people you could ever talk to. He could easily be a stand-up comedian.

    The fact is, every single person involved had a great sense of self-deprecatory humor. No divas or self-important jerks in the bunch.

    In fact, I’m almost certainly the shyest person of the group in person. For reals.


  46. Comment by Lori M | 10.1.2012 | 4:13 pm

    The entire thing went down like a wacky, dysfunctional, super competitive family reunion sack race. A family made up of A list Hollywood and world class cyclists. You only forgot to mention the SRAM motorcycle should anyone need roadside assistance on course. This added to an already jam packed fun event. Well done Fatty!

  47. Comment by Scott Gilbert aka ScottyG1962 | 10.1.2012 | 4:24 pm

    Did anyone think to upload the race files to Strava!!! lol Great job Fatty you are certainly the K.O.M. of fundraisers!

  48. Comment by Yukirin Boy | 10.1.2012 | 4:47 pm

    Fantastic! and congratulations to everyone involved.
    Just reading and looking at the pictures had me laughing out loud. I wish I could have been there.

    Does Fatty need a new challenger, I wonder if hot dog champion, Takeru Kobayashi, can ride a bike? Levi might want his contact details.

  49. Comment by Kanyon Kris | 10.1.2012 | 5:03 pm

    Pose #2 proves your commitment to comedy is unquestionable.

  50. Comment by Saso | 10.1.2012 | 5:18 pm

    Congrats! This result was obvious and inevitable. You didn’t even need to cut the course this time.

  51. Comment by tommy | 10.1.2012 | 5:37 pm

    You’re a good person Fatty. Need more like you.

  52. Comment by mims | 10.1.2012 | 5:53 pm

    Hmmm, after meeting you and the Hammer in the finley center parking lot post gran fondo, I would have said you are definitely not fat. But after seeing that post donut race belly shot, I am bailing on that. BTW, maybe catching some rays and getting a tan on your midsection would help it look smaller. Or you can just wait until the baby is born and hope your stretch marks fade fast.

    Oh, I totally forgot to mention: The Hammer and I went out for burgers at Five Guys after this event. -FC

  53. Comment by Matters | 10.1.2012 | 7:29 pm

    What colour Jersey does the donut champion wear? I feel like it should be brown… or maybe beige.

  54. Comment by Michael | 10.1.2012 | 8:45 pm

    Dude, Kristin Armstrong could SO beat the so-called “queen of pain.” I mean, she’s a swimmer, an Ironwoman, and, as mentioned, a gold medalist.

    And I say that as a bona fide, genuine armchair quarterback.

  55. Comment by AKChick55 | 10.1.2012 | 9:13 pm

    Wow. That photo is PRICELESS (you know the one I’m talking about!). I laughed out loud for so long and so hard that I had tears streaming down my face. I love that the pros and the actor are all really awesome people.

    That was a MUCH needed laugh today as it was confirmed that my dad has pancreatic cancer. We are waiting to find out what stage it is so hope to find that out in a couple days. So thankful that I have LIVESTRONG for support.

    Maybe next year you can get Chris Horner on board and another lady (I think his wife races). :) Or we’re going to have to get you hooked up with his Gran Fondo… that takes place in… Bend, Oregon. :)

  56. Comment by Nurse Betsy | 10.1.2012 | 9:46 pm

    “OK, Fatty, that’s enough,” Rod said. “Nobody’s going to touch that. Head on out on your lap.”

    Funniest line in the whole report! Great Job.

  57. Comment by Mark | 10.1.2012 | 9:47 pm

    You, sir, are an donut eating angel! What an insane, ingenious, crazy, fun, wonderful way to benefit worthwhile causes. I’m just sitting here smiling. I know I’ll be laughing when the video shows up! Well done to you and your fellow “racers”!

  58. Comment by davidh-marin, ca | 10.1.2012 | 10:07 pm

    It was truly an epic event and I was so glad I took my eight year old out of school to watch. I’m confident that Levi will not subject himself to a rematch.(now he knows the rules…and the Champ)

    I brought a piece of pie for Fatty(if he needed to ‘juice’) It was obviously unnecessary so The Hammer ate it…I assume before the burgers???

    @Rod still needs to ride: It was great to meet you and I would love to haul a contingent of FOF bikes to Utah next summer. It seems the Utah Do-Fon-Dough is the same weekend as the Markleville Death Ride
    Let’s see…139m 15k feet on a tandem or friends and donuts in Utah. Don’t be surprised to see my check.

    @Fatty Thank you again for getting us together for another fun outing, but your modesty is still rampant. You failed to mention that in raising $12,000 for charity the BIG MONEY was on YOU

  59. Comment by Carl | 10.1.2012 | 10:48 pm

    “And there were sighs of relief all around” Sounds like you snuck in another Monty Pythonism. Looks like this was so much fun and you made some serious cash for the three charities. Great job Fatty!

  60. Comment by Sarah | The Cyclist's Wife | 10.1.2012 | 11:07 pm

    Good job fatty. Anyone who get’s skinny cyclists to eat a bunch of donuts deserves a prize.

  61. Comment by dana | 10.1.2012 | 11:39 pm

    very nice! you have a new fan!

  62. Comment by Steve | 10.2.2012 | 4:03 am

    Were Kristin’s rice cakes baked INTO the donuts she ate? I was not clear on that.

    Next year, I’m going to be there in person. I want to volunteer to eat the leftovers. By the way, did clipless pedals and a velodrome ever factor into your pre-race planning?

    Your only challenge now is to be able to contain the exponential growth with Gran DoNut Race II. Can you say, “national television coverage?”

    Congratulations to you, Fatty, and to all your game teammates and competitors! Funny stuff. Check with the Guinness people (records, not beer). Your event might have set the new dollar raised per donut eaten world record.

  63. Comment by owen | 10.2.2012 | 7:37 am

    Great report! they never had a chance against you on a single speed bike!..and the donut eating thing helped also.

  64. Comment by Faux Runner | 10.2.2012 | 8:43 am

    Loved the report and photos!!
    Was around on twitter when LL accepted your “challenge”. Wondered what was happening. Great time!

  65. Comment by Erwin | 10.2.2012 | 9:02 am

    This calls for a new Strava category: The KOD

  66. Comment by Roger Whitney | 10.2.2012 | 10:22 am

    I hold my head in shame that I placed my wager AGAINST Fatty. What was I thinking? Please accept my apology for ever doubting you.

  67. Comment by davidh-marin, ca | 10.2.2012 | 10:50 am

    @Roger Whitney and the others who ‘wagered’ against the Fat Man. Take a look at the picture below:
    Enlarge if required:

    You’ll notice that five racers are sporting footwear suitable for a bike…the sixth…in the Italian comfortwear…the Nissan Pace Car…maybe?
    I cringe thinking how I might neuter myself riding a kid’s bike, in a race, in those. I’m sure Fatty told him this was all for fun and to “wear anything you want

  68. Comment by SR | 10.2.2012 | 12:17 pm

    Awesome. Concept, logistics, participation = Hilarity (plus good cause). Yay!

    Unrelated: this photo of Stanley Tucci reminded me of your brat-grilling-action pics.


  69. Comment by Delirious | 10.2.2012 | 12:24 pm

    I don’t think the beanie was lost. At the start line of the Fondo it was handed to a local rider, nicknamed ‘Chopper’ (propeller-chopper connection). An awesome individual who completed the medio less than 2 years after a heart tranplant!

    Well, regardless of how Levi got rid of it, it was on the ground within 20 feet of the starting line. I nearly ran it over. – FC

  70. Comment by Rob L | 10.2.2012 | 1:01 pm

    Next year see if Krispy Kreme will join as a sponsor!

  71. Comment by Roger Bowersock | 10.2.2012 | 2:14 pm

    Congrats on a great event and fundraiser from all of us at The Tour de Donut Ohio.

  72. Comment by mCat | 10.2.2012 | 2:51 pm

    The post I’ve been WAITING FOR! Love the re-cap, love the players, love the good cause it was done for. Well done Fatty, well done indeed!

  73. Comment by Chris | 10.2.2012 | 5:43 pm

    Next year invite Joey Chestnut to level the eating playing field :)

    I was there on Friday (drove down early specifically to see it!) and certainly was not disappointed! Funniest thing I have ever seen. You guys were all great! Look forward to round 2 next year!

  74. Comment by mims | 10.2.2012 | 10:09 pm

    I think you need to up the bar next year. Lunch first at Superburger for all the contestants (for shame going to an interloper burger joint like five guys…but you are not a local so you are excused this time). Then, a Jelly donut race in heat like we had today in Santa Rosa…..101′F. Thank the heavens the weather was better behaved for the Fondo.

  75. Comment by patty | 10.3.2012 | 6:10 am

    What a hoot!

  76. Comment by cece | 10.3.2012 | 8:09 am

    Was looking forward to reading this and looking at the pics! Everyone was such a great sport!

  77. Comment by Dustin(SEOVOD) | 10.3.2012 | 12:08 pm

    Looks like everyone had a blast!!! Good work!

  78. Comment by FliesOnly | 10.3.2012 | 12:29 pm

    That may be about the coolest thing ever.

  79. Comment by davidh-marin, ca | 10.3.2012 | 12:44 pm

    It’s obviously not the official film, but for those of us seeking a view “outside the barricades” a MR. GREG FONG has shot a very complete youtube of Fatty’s Triumph:

    Levi didn’t stand a chance

  80. Comment by davidh-marin, ca | 10.3.2012 | 1:01 pm

    Wife#1 is calling Faty out on the above referenced video. She says he “cut the course” she also says “very cute”.

    I’ll wait for the decision of the Court of Arbitration of Sport shold Levi decide to go there.

  81. Comment by Rebecca's Mom | 10.3.2012 | 2:50 pm

    Over the years, I have read many, many race reports about Rebecca’s competitions…adventure racing, mountain biking, whitewater rafting and even outrigger canoe paddling. BUT I have never read a more entertaining, hysterical, fact-filled, picture-augmented race report that was just so much fun to read, re-read and then forward to everyone I could think of. The event was obviously a riot, you guys raised tons of money for good projects, and the whole thing just looked like so much fun. Thanks for putting on such a fun event and giving us such a great report. I cannot wait for next year. You are an amazing writer!

    This is the best comment I have ever received. – FC

  82. Comment by Greg Fisher | 10.3.2012 | 10:38 pm

    What the hell have we done?

    I was honestly moving too fast to let any of this sink in and now I sit amazed that a couple of phone calls to good people proliferated into a singularly absurd (and charitable) 25 minutes.

    Thanks for all your help. There’s a reason I call you every year and it’s not because you help us raise a ton of money (though that’s nice, no doubt). You’re part of the spirit and fabric of the GranFondo and, as long as it’s up to me, you’ll have a home here.

    And all it took was one smart ass “open letter to Levi on the occasion of his first mountain bike race” to get this whole thing started. I’m very glad for it and for you. Again, my thanks, both professionally and personally. I’m glad to know you.

  83. Comment by Marc C. | 10.4.2012 | 10:51 am

    I think it is safe to say that if you opened up this competition to the public next year, I would smoke you all. And I’m sure I’m not the only one thinking this…donut-food for thought….

  84. Comment by Jodi | 10.4.2012 | 11:48 am

    May I have all the toddler bikes now that your done with them? Mostly for my twins, but the one that McDreamy used may or may not be put into a shrine.

    Super proud of you, again. Amazing what my bro can do.

  85. Comment by Brian Stephens | 10.6.2012 | 6:09 am

    Simply awesome! Awesome race, awesome participation, and awesome fundraising.

    My favorites:
    -”I was awe inspiring.”
    -The fact that Tommy D can unhinge his jaw. Multi-talented.
    -Dave Towle doing the announcing…perfect voice for that race.
    -The horrified looks as Fatty showed off the winning stomach.

    Great stuff.


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