Les Femmes Scorch @ 6 Hrs of Mt Hood

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I am sweating the minute I get out of the car. Standing in the parking lot of Mt.Hood Ski Bowl at 8:00 am in running tights and fleece jacket, I am clearly overdressed. The sun was out in full force bringing temperatures into the 60’s this early. It’s going to be a scorcher.

Beautiful day on Mt Hood

Beautiful day on Mt Hood

The menu choices for todays race  are as follows: 2 person women, 2 person men, 2 person co ed, solo/solo singlespeed, or 2 person combined age of 80+ or 100+. Every team races for 6 hours, how you split the laps is your choice.

Today's Menu

Today’s Menu

Each lap on the 6 mile course has an elevation gain of 800 feet, combined  with screaming fast technical descents,  twisty single-track, roots and a series of ascending switch-backs (in the sun) to slow you down. Trail conditions were excellent with all of the recent dry weather. Sellwood Cycle Repair is one of the biggest sponsors for this race and owner Erik Tonkin designed the course.  I like to think of it as the Tonkin Romper Room.

Quick Draw Tonkin

Quick Draw Tonkin

Each 2 person team gets to pick a unique name for the day. Here is the Les Femmes line up and team names:

Mielle Blomberg/Mary Fordham – Team Fanny Pack

Laurie Hotovy/Dan Watson (fiance) –HotWatts

Remy Maguire/Andrew Morphis (hubby) – Disco Penguins (sadly too hot for the actual costume this year)

Beth Ann Orton/Erik Tonkin – WoManimals

Sellwood provided neutral support ,in the form of shop guy Jason Beasley,to ease stressed and sometimes broken bikes back into working order.

Jason B wrenching for us all

Jason B wrenching for us all

After lap one sorted out the riders and traffic eased on the trails, everyone got into their collective racing grooves, never straying too far from the relay exchange area or the shade of a team tent as temps rose into the 80’s. 242 racers turned out!  32 minute average lap times for the fast guys, and the ladies were in the 38-45 min range.  I saw a two women wipe-out in the gravel descent to the exchange area but it appeared that the first aid tent only needed to tend to scrapes today. The best transition of the day was the “kiss off” when Dan and Laurie smooched at every exchange.

HotWatts getting charged

HotWatts getting charged

Remy earned some kudos from Erik for her speed when they passed on the course. Go Remy!

Beth Ann and Erik split the day in half and ended up with the most laps, 11 total, earning them top podium spot in the 23 team co ed group. For the rest of us mere mortals, the laps were just as tough, but not as numerous.  Mary and I cranked out consistent lap times, and had a stop watch running so as not to miss the relay exchange. “Uh, Mary.. Mary where are you!!!! “ Yup, someone was chillin’ in the shade when I rolled in (we call that the JULIE KRAMER). We took 3rd in the 2 person women’s group with a total of 8 laps, missing the 3:45 pm cut off for one more lap by seconds.

No injuries to any of our teams today and all ponies returned to their stables a little soiled but not too sullied. 

Beth F was absent from the race since she was racing a TRI, but showed up in time for awards with her hubby and took pictures. That is some team love right there!

Final Results

Remy/Andrew 12th  9 laps

Laurie/Dan 7th  9 laps

Beth Ann/Erik 1st  11 laps

Mielle/Mary 3rd  8 laps

Sooooo many hot laps. Winners need naps.

Sooooo many hot laps. Winners need naps.

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