Friday, September 4, 2009

Rusch, Martin capture Targhee 24-hour race

Winners of Solo mountain bike enduro

Ketchum's Rebecca Rusch likes to cram her mountain biking into one continuous 24-hour period—and she has become one of the world's best when such contests are staged.

Rusch, 40, the three-time 24-Hour World Solo queen, added the Grand Targhee 24-Hour Mountain Bike victory to her glittering resume Sunday. She won the Women's Solo Open class with 21 laps of the 8.3-mile loop over 24 hours, or about 174 miles of riding overnight.

A cash prize of $1,000 went to the Solo champion at Targhee. The men's Solo Open champion was Ketchum's Greg Martin, also with 21 laps.

Other local results: Ketchum's Michael Shane won Men's Singlespeed Solo; and Chris Gardner and Mike Herlinger (20 laps apiece) placed 2-3 in the Men's Solo Open class.

The two-day event started Saturday, Aug. 29 at 12 noon in the Caribou-Targhee National Forest of eastern Idaho and ended at 12 noon Sunday. Riders endured strong winds that started late Saturday night and continued through Sunday morning. Elevation gain was about 1,060 feet per lap.

Wood River rider Gardner said the single-track course wasn't super technical. He added that all the local riders benefited from the support work of Boise's Todd Meier. Gardner said, "24 Hour races have such a good camaraderie. Rebecca won her race pretty handily."

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