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Sunday, July 29, 2001 -- Charles Fork Lake - Spencer, WV
Tour de Lake - WVMBA Point Series #8 (iPO Event Id#: 2631)
Story by Dave McKain with additional photos by Diann Clothier

[Details] [Coverage]
Results: [XC Overall] [XC by Class] [Kids Race]
Pictures: [Set 1] [Set 2] [Set 3] [Set 4] [Set 5] [Set 6] [Set 7] [Set 8]
[1998 Coverage] [1999 Coverage] [2000 Coverage]

Race Pic
And the pain begins
An then the skies opened up. For the first time in it's history, the All Sport Tour de Lake was plagued by rainfal during the race - and we're not talking about sprinkles either - this was a driving rain at times that kept teasing at stopping before coming down once again. That didn't keep a horde of mountain bikers from descending on Spencer WV for the 7th edition of the race. The mud and rocks took their tool on both man and machine but the majority of racers pulled through.

In the Mens Expert class, Jason Laxton pulled out to an early lead, putting over a minute on the field. Behind Laxton was an eager chase group including Clay Evans, Benji Klimas, Pete Sedunov, Kyle Dixon and Kevin Leyh. First to fall was Dixon as he lunched his rear derailleur when picking up a stick. Both Laxton and Evans flatted, giving Leyh the opportunity he needed. Once in the lead, Leyh never looked back and went on to finish 3 minutes ahead of the rest with Laxton (2:03:10) and Evans (2:03:24) while Klimas (2:03:41) edged out Sedunov at the finish (2:03:49).

Race Pic
Clay Evans thankful to be done
In the Womens Expert class, Missy Showman (2:33:37) took her second consecutive WVMBA Series win but not without a challenge. Through the first lap, Cassie Smith applied pressure, keeping Showman within sight but was unable to keep the pace, allowing Showman (2:33:37) to pull away. Mandi Riddle (3:10:31) rounded out the top three for the class. Rob Gaus scorched the Mens Expert Vet field, posting a time of 2:10:07 - good enough for sixth place overall while Steve Thaxton (2:27:44) and Broc Kaylor (2:29:23) took second and third respectively in the class. In the Mens Sport class, Ian Custer walked away with the win, crossing the finish with a time of 2:17:38 - seven minutes ahead of second place finisher Darin Shriver (2:24:23) while Nathan Annon took third place with a time of 2:27:41. In the womens sport class, Nicole Davis (1:32:19 - 1 Lap) took the win over Amy Dunkin (1:47:03) with Emily Bashton (1:57:33) taking the third spot. In the Jr. Sport class, Danny Wilson (1:07:48) took the class win and, in the process, posted the fastest time for the 1 Lap racers.

Race Pic
Down at the water hole
After the race, many riders found their way down to the boat ramp to get rid of the grime picked up out on the course. It was interesting to observe some riders detailing their bikes at the waterside while still covered by mud, showing where their priorities were. Racers also got to fill up on Blimpie subs and as much All-Sport as they could handle - much needed refueling after a grueling, mud filled race.