Thursday, December 8, 2011

5th Annual Hell of the Marianas

Last Saturday, 161 participants raced in the 5th Annual Hell of the Marianas Century Cycle, dubbed "the Toughest Race in Micronesia". The HOM canvasses the perimeter of Saipan with steep hills and sharp descents. Cyclists can choose to ride 100km solo, or share the distance with 1,2 or 3 other team members. This year, I teamed up with fellow Gold's members and rode the last leg (25km) from Banzai Cliff back to PIC, drafting the entire way.

Russ competed for the fifth time and finished a little slower than last year but felt better throughout the entire ride. He made the podium with a 3rd place finish in his age group!

The morning before and the morning after race day was full of rain so we were especially lucky to have dry skies last Saturday morning. The race started at 6:15am with pros from Russia, Australia, Korea, Japan, Guam and Saipan. This year, an Aussie pro shattered the record by nearly five minutes, finishing in 2 hours 57 minutes! The majority of riders finished between 4-5 hours.
Here's my team: Rex, Sean, me and Brett.
We even placed second in our coed Mountain bike division.
Earlier in the week, we attended PIC's Annual Christmas Party. The theme was "White Out" so we were supposed to dress in white.

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