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Wisconsin Off-Road Series Final - NE

Sheboygan, WI, October 9, 2005


The pinnacle of mountain bike racing...

By Brian Matter - WORS

Glad I can use this
Photo ©: Rusty
Click for larger image

No, I'm not talking about the infamous "water jump" in Traverse City, MI at the Norba Olympic Qualifier in 1996, or even the Power Post Extreme section at the Norba National in Mount Snow, VT in 1997. I'm talking about WORS 2005 series finals at Sheboygan, WI Evergreen Park. I felt like I warped back in time to the height of the mountain bike frenzy in the mid 90's. $30,000 in prizes, including $1,700 for first place in the men's pro race, free car giveaway from Van Horn Hyundai of Sheboygan, holeshot primes, hill climb primes, live band, spectator zones, and thousands of Midwest crazed mountain bikers.

The pro mens race: The morning of the race I was nervous. I am usually not nervous for a race, but this was big time. The local paper had been running press for the last three days, lots of money on the line, and a stacked Midwest field. The race started with a mad dash 400 yards into the race for the Holeshot prime. Doug Swanson (Plymouth, MN) from Trek Midwest was first, I was second, and Brian Eppen (Iowa City, IA) was third. From that point on it was full speed ahead. The 70-strong rider field had whittled down to the 10 contenders. Any of the 10 could have won the race.

Mike Toshe from Van Horn Hyundai
Photo ©: Rusty
Click for larger image

Doug Swanson pounded the pace at the front, followed by John Devine, myself, Tristan Schouten (Sheboygan, WI) Jeff Hall, Brian Eppen, Cole House, Ian Stanford, AJ Ettmyer, and Travis Woodruff (PCW Cycling). After lap one it was down to five riders as John Devine took charge of the race. He was absolutely flying on lap 2, but was maybe taking too many risks on the rocky descent near the quarry and flatted at the end of the lap. Tristan Schouten, Trek Midwest, took charge on lap 3 followed by Swanson, Hall, and myself. At the end of lap 3 Tristan attacked up the "Equalizer" a hill so steep the race promoter, Fat Kats and PCW Cycling, were handing out $5 to every racer who was able to ride to the top.

Tristan had the gap and was able to maintain it over the last 2 laps. Swanson, Hall, and myself worked together trying to catch Tristan, but he was too strong. With a half of a lap remaing Hall attacked and I was not able to respond. Swanson ended up sprinting for second, Hall was third, and I cruised in for a comfortable fourth. Brian Eppen rounded out the podium for fifth. The women's pro race was won by Sara Kylander Johnson of Trek Midwest, followed closely by Jenna Zander from MN, and Kim Eppen from IA. See www.wors.org for complete results.

The race also determined the mens and womens WORS Point series Champions, Jeff Hall (Salsa Cycles) won the men's, followed by last years WORS Champ Brian Matter of PCW Cycling in second, and Brian Eppen in third. Kim Eppen won the Womens overall title.

As I look back on the race the morning after I can't help getting a big grin on my face. What a blast...crazy fans, a guy racing in a Gorilla suit, lots of prize money, a free Hyundai Sonata....a 15 year old kid won the car...and cheerleaders at the finish line!

Why can't every race be like this? Thanks to PCW Cycling team director Rob Boldt and Fat Kats race promoter Dan Dittrich for the amazing amount of hard work. They put on the best race in the country no questions asked. Thanks to all of the PCW Cycling Sponsors: Hyundai, Trek, Bontrager, Oakley, Crank Brothers, and Bike N Ski of Sheboygan. See www.pcwcycling.org for more information.


For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by Rusty/www.wors.org


Elite Females
1 Sara Kylander-Johnson (Trek/VW/JBL)          44.41
2 Jenna Zander (Cannondale Mtn Bike Team)       0.01
3 Kim Eppen (Mercy / Specialized)               1.59
4 Abigail Strigel (Polska Cannondale)           6.16
5 Sara Stanford (D'Arcy / SRAM Cycling Team)    6.57
6 Christina Betz (Michael's Cycles)            10.43
7 Diana Hill (Trek VW)                         11.46
8 Holly Liske (Hayes Disc Brakes)              12.20
9 Lori Sable (Team Wisconsin)                  12.28
10 Linda Gabor (Team Wisconsin)                12.37
Elite Males
1 Tristan Schouten (Trek Midwest)              52.36
2 Doug Swanson (Trek / VW)                      1.12
3 Jeff Hall (Salsa Cycles)                      1.13
4 Brian Matter (pcwcycling.org)                 2.41
5 Brian Eppen (Mercy - Specialized)             5.18
6 A J Ettmayer, Jr (Team Pedal Moraine)         6.46
7 Ian Stanford (Nature Valley / Penn Cycle)     6.47
8 Jesse Lalonde (Gary Fisher)                   6.52
9 Cole House (GMAC/Specialized)                 7.47
10 Travis J. Woodruff (pcwcycling.org)          8.44
11 Todd Mc Fadden (Trek VW)                     9.43
12 Michael Spiro (PCW Cycling)                 10.16
13 Jerry Long (Chainsmokers)                   10.25
14 Jeff Melcher (Pedal Moraine)                10.26
15 Jesrin Gaier (RIVERBROOK)                   10.31
Sport Females
1 Antonia Leal (Muddy Cup)                     26.04
2 Samantha Schneider (Endeavor)                 1.41
3 Kaitlin Antonneau (Team Wisconsin)            1.51
4 Andrea Matter                                 2.32
5 Kristina Meinig (Lake Geneva Cyclery)         2.35
6 Brittany Nigh (Team Pedal Moraine)            2.52
7 Jami Hartwig (Team Skin)                      2.54
7 Amy Pikalek (Team Wisconsin)                  3.48
8 Karen Zielinski                               4.59
9 Cathy Diamond (Alterra Coffee MTB Team)       5.19
10 Rebekah Stuckart (Team Extreme)              6.07
11 Danielle Newton (BMW-Bianchi)                6.33
12 Rachael Gatto (D'Arcy / SRAM)                8.00
13 Denise McCormick (TEAM EXTREME)              8.56
14 Jamie Buske (Team Extreme)                   9.10
15 Amy Lamkins (Gear N' Up)                     9.46
Sport Males
1 Steven Frost (Team Wisconsin)                15.40
2 Paul Fox (VeloTrocadero)                      0.27
3 Joshua Heinecke                               0.57
4 David Volm (Alterra Coffee MTB Team)          1.12
5 Ryan Kann (Adventure's Racing Team)           1.51
6 Kevin Herman (Team AMB)                       2.01
7 James Schroeder                               2.17
8 Ryan White                                    2.23
9 Tim Montee (hayes)                            2.31
10 Steve Jeske (Pedal Moraine)                  2.38
11 Trevor Townsend (Team Pacific)               2.41
12 Ty Gonzalez (Alterra Coffee MTB Team)        2.46
13 Brian Christensen (PCWCycling.org)           3.15
14 Paul Rainey (Team AMB)                       3.27
15 Todd Kalkoske                                3.34
Citizen Females
1 Renee Bach (Team Ry-z)                       52.24
2 Gabriela Baranova                             0.24
3 Sarah Guse (FDL/OSH Cyclery)                  2.10
4 Sheryl Leonard-Schneck Milwaukee WI               
5 Linette Davis                                 3.10
6 Amy Dykema (Active Endeavors)                 3.58
7 Arin Lemke (Team Pedal Moraine)               4.32
8 Cecile Labecki (RPM hayes Brake)              4.44
9 Cheryl Rollins (Fondy Cyclery)                4.54
10 Ally Floyd                                   5.05
11 Elizabeth Legaspi (Fattires-n-beer)          6.55
12 Rachel Snider (UW-Whitewater)                7.02
13 Rebecca Crocker (GenericaUSA)                7.07
14 Colleen Erdmann                              7.24
15 Krista Klanderman                            7.55
Citizen Males
1 Derek Billmann                               43.30
2 Trevor Stellrecht (Wheel & Sprocket)          0.31
3 Mike Sherven                                  0.37
4 John Kummer (Fat Kats - Fat tires & Beer)     0.39
5 Shawn Meinke                                  1.10
6 Kyle Guerra (Guerra Means War)                1.16
7 Tyler Jahn                                    1.26
8 Jim Doherty                                   1.29
9 Chad Krenzke (Team Extreme)                   1.34
10 Anthony Dipiazza                             1.36
11 James McMahon                                1.57
12 Ben Neubauer                                 2.14
13 Alan Schroeder                               2.19
14 Jason Stauber                                2.22
15 Curt Demott (GMAC Home Morgages / Team 2)    2.39
16 Kelby Shaw                                   2.42
17 Alex Bird                                    2.56
18 Adam Goeden (Team Pedal Moraine)             3.01
19 Jeff Cummisford                              3.02
20 Samuel Priem (Team Extreme )                 3.04