Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Dart Nuun Roster Wins Colorado Pole Pedal Paddle

The Pole(ski) Peddle Paddle is much like your traditional triathlon but it pulls from a much different set of athletes. It brings together professional mountain bikers, rando racers and small town elite athletes. After a particularly bad snow year the few weeks before the race restored some faith in this event dumping over 40inch of snow in April alone rejuvenated the slopes and refilled the rivers.  Our 3person coed team will be pushing the limits and trying Keep up with all of the men’s teams.  The team consists of Ryan Ognibene in his first 3P where he will pushing hard on the ski. Heather Prentice which will be our stud biker and JR’s new fiancĂ©, Woohoo, you heard me right people. Lastly, we have Jeremy Rogers doing the anchor leg in the kayak where he will hunt down anyone that has snuck past earlier in the race. 

After Checking out the conditions of the course Saturday and fine tuning all of our gear we settled in for the night and got ready for our not so early morning. Everyone on the team really enjoyed the 10:30am start time which left us plenty of time to sleep in, eat a good breakfast, and get mentally prepared to race.
At 10:30am the gun went off. Ryan Took off up the snow packed trail for a 10min accent. Ryan moved quickly into second place pushing hard. At the top he ripped his skins and took off down the only fun section of skiing on the course. With fresh soft snow the downhill went very quick, rushing through the trees and out onto the flats. On The flats Ryan pushed hard alternating between skating and double poling down the track. Towards the end when the snow turned in to more dirt then snow Ryan quickly switched to his Vasque running shoes and ran out the last mile of the course. This did not prove to be faster than his competitors but it did leave Ryan with the satisfaction he was not literally skiing on rocks and ruining his skis on the last mile of the race course and a faster TA time. In the TA Ryan quickly passed on the timing chip to Heather and she took off.

 Heather powered through the 15 mile mixed forest service road and single track descent with wreckless abandon shaving 10 minutes off her 2012 split on the bike leg finishing in a solid 1 hour 9 minutes just minutes off the lead male soloists. Her technical riding skills have really blossomed in the last year and the packed sand couldn’t slow down the Schwalbe Racing Ralph’s. 

Jeremy took the pass off from bike to paddle and weaved his way through record low water flows to win the paddle leg by a respectable margin with Colorado multisport powerhouses Shane Sigle and Evan Ross close on his heels.  Never had running shoes been so important in a paddling race! He even ran his boat over numerous stretches that he deemed unpaddle able from scouting runs the day before. Colorado’s snowpack is finally recovering from last years drought and this years low flows were more reflective of conservative releases in early season than potential runoff in the upcoming 4 weeks.

After a hard fought race we waited in suspense to hear how we had placed. Not really knowing how the other teams had done. As awards went on we discovered we did not take the entire race. A few 3P veterans had finished just before us. Finally our time had come to learn our fate. We were not 3rd, we were not 2nd, we had Won!! The announcers states that Team Dart-nuun not only won the Coed team division but they had beaten out all of the men’s teams also. What a great experience and race. We will definitely be back next year to race the PPP again.
Looking back at the race we also discovered we had put the fastest TA times up of any team or individual. This was just icing on the cake for our great weekend.

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