The 43rd Annual Bob Cook Memorial Mt. Evans Hillclimb, the highest finishing bicycle race in the United States, was held last Saturday.
Kevin Nicol (Toyko Joe’s Pro Cycling) narrowly edged Ian MacGregor (Team Type 1) for the win, both setting a time of 1:53:21 for the 28-mile race. Peter Stetina (Garmin-Chipotle) was third, crossing the line five seconds behind the winner. The winning time was over 12 minutes from the fastest time set by Tom Danielson in 2004.
New Zealand Olympian Glen Chadwick (Team Type 1) was fourth, 18 seconds from the winner. The unstoppable 54-year old Ned Overend, winner in 1985 and 1986, was fifth, a further seven seconds back.
In the women’s race, the amazing Jeannie Longo won after a solo attack, stopping the clock at 2:10:10. Kristin McGrath (Colavita/Sutter Home) was second, over 6 minutes behind Longo and Susannah Gordon (ColoBikeLaw.com) was third, over 13 minutes from the winner. Longo is the current record holder with a time of 1:59:19 set in 1998.
The course that uses the highest paved automobile road in North America starts at 7,540 feet in front of the Clear Creek Middle School and proceeds to Echo Lake, where it turns and climbs to the summit at 14,264 feet. The vertical gain is 6,580 feet, with 6,920 feet of climbing overall.