Tour Divide Race: Q & A With Singlespeeder Chris Plesko

Outside Magazine has done a great interview with local Tour Divide rider Chris Plesko.

Most riders are either off the course or will be finishing the 2009 Tour Divide race soon. Despite the phantasmagorical weather this year, most records fell—an interesting portent for the evolution of self-supported Continental Divide racing. Alaskan Jill Homer broke the female record with a time of 24 days, 7 hours and 24 minutes. Jay and Tracey “T-Race” Petervary set a tandem (that’s right) record of 18:13:44. And 27-year-old engineer-turned-teacher Chris Plesko blew the asterisks off the single speed record in the 2009 Tour Divide with a time of nineteen days and sixteen minutes. He spun his Vassago 29er through unprecedented bad weather. I caught up with him just after he returned home to Colorado.

JB: How the hell did you keep up with the chase group for most of the race? They had gears (in case you didn't notice).

CP: The first part of the race course is quite singlespeed friendly. It's got loads of climbing and not too many long, gradual downhills which are my nemesis from the perspective of racing with the geared guys heads up. I geared really big (for me) at 32x17 but I knew from training in the mountains above Boulder with a 32x16 that I could push
that gear up almost all of the climbs without walking. Additionally I just tried to save time where ever I could, eating and drinking on the fly, changing clothes while riding, etc.

For the rest of the interview go here

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