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24 Hours of Conyers - NE

Conyers, Georgia, USA, May 17-18, 2008

2007 Results   Results

Local couple wins endurance battle

Pre-race favorites and Atlanta residents Eddie and Namrita O'Dea won the men's and women's solo classes at the Suzuki 24 Hours of Conyers on May 17-18 at the Georgia International Horse Park, the venue used for the 1996 Olympic Games mountain bike events. The pair now has a comfortable lead in the six race 24 hour National Points Series (NPS).

The rolling, wooded, nine-mile singletrack course was an extended version of the Olympic loop, which was closer to six miles, but it still included large sections of the legendary granite outcrops, which made for a feast of unusual climbing and descending challenges. Georgia-based riders and teams dominated the results, lending credibility to the concept of "home-field" advantage.

The Five-Man Faster Mustache team took both class and overall titles, riding 30 laps in 24 hours, seven minutes and 48 seconds. The team with the tongue-in-cheek name, whose shtick includes having members ride while wearing fake mustaches, is composed of Atlanta-area residents. In second place by ten minutes was the Naval Special Warfare Flyin' Frogs team from San Diego. Team member Nathan Sibly broke the record for fastest lap with a 39:36 over the nine-mile course.

The duo pro pair from Athens, Wakeracing's The Crew, Less Two set the early pace on the warm, sunny and dry afternoon. "Wild Bill" Lanzilotta, a former Fort Lewis College student, now turned University of Georgia biochemistry professor, rode his second lap of the race in 40 minutes flat. This was a harbinger of the blazing fast lap times seen throughout the race in the hard and solid course conditions.

Lanzilotta and partner Jeremy Edge hammered out the fastest 11 of the first 12 laps by the time dusk settled. Shortly before midnight, however, the 5 Man Faster Mustache team - with three more sets of fresher legs in reserve - had taken the overall lead. Wakeracing's The Crew, Less Two's tumble from the leader board wasn't entirely by accident, however. After 15 laps, an assured win in their class, and with plans to race again the following weekend, the pair took a "virtual" six- hour lap and got some shut-eye.

Into the crisp, clear moonlit Georgia night, Faster Mustache gained momentum, but as the new day broke they discovered there was a new force to reckon with. Going into the final six hours, the Naval Special Warfare Flyin' Frogs team poured on the steam. Even after Sibly's record breaking lap time, the four-rider men's sport class squad continued to post impressively fast lap times of right around 40 minutes as the race drew closer to a finish. By the end, both teams had to ride a 30th lap to determine the winner, and Faster Mustache prevailed by a mere ten minute margin. "We were close, so we thought we'd try for the win," explained NSW team captain, Eric Skalski.

Another local favorite, Five Person Co-Ed team Priority Fe-Mail's class win included the efforts of 12-year old Megan Lilly, who was just four months old when 1996 Women's gold medallist Paola Pezzo stormed to victory at the same venue. Lilly rode for two laps, coached by her father Thom Lilly. The second of her two laps was the faster, at 1:17:06. Who knows what time she would have posted had she stuck around to ride some more, but with a school gymnastics tournament on Sunday calling her away, she had to leave early Saturday evening.

Not all contenders were local, however. Liz Baumgardt-Kays of Illinois plans to visit all six races of the NPS. The women's solo runner-up at Conyers has already put over 6,000 miles on her vehicle's odometer driving to and from the first two races in the 2008 Suzuki 24 Hour Series, and she plans to attend the remaining four events.

The series travels next to Big Bear, West Virginia for round three on June 7-8.

Results

Solo men                                Laps   Time

15 O'Dea, Edward M.                      21  10:11:55
17 Ayhan, Emrah                          20  12:06:25
16 McMillan, Jimmy C.                    20  11:49:07
23 Alligood, Joe B.                      12  4:39:18
25 Hanna, Kenny J.                       10  10:21:45
26 Simons, Jim                            8  12:24:06

Solo women  

21 O'Dea, Namrita K.                     15  11:04:10
24 Baumgardt-Kays, Liz N.                12  10:38:30

Five Person Co-ed                       

12 Priority Fe-Mail                      23  11:42:28
   
Five Person  

1 Faster Mustache                        30  12:07:48
3 ZerieUSA                               28  12:05:47
4 BUMP n' Uglies                         27  12:01:34
7 The Cyclepaths                         25  12:14:52
13 Jack Legs Part 3                      23  12:40:28
   
Duo Pro  

11 Wakeracing's - The Crew, less two.    23  11:17:52
20 Bone Crushers                         17  10:43:13
   
Sport men  

2 NSW Flyin' Frogs                       30  12:18:01
5 Incognito Endurance                    27  12:46:58
6 VT Dragonsauce                         26  12:29:23
10 Wolf Pack                             24  12:11:00
9 Atlanta Cycling                        24  12:03:31
   
Veteran men  

19 Habersham Bicycles                    18  11:07:37

Fun  

8 Delta Farce                            24  11:11:47
14 20 Years of SORBA                     22  11:29:49
18 The Preston Partnership               19  12:04:58
22 Group Therapy                         15  11:08:04