For a few races this season, the Gent’s have had a challenge. This is a very different one. 

Since back in May, the Gentlemen’s Club has been trying to challenge one another. From the most miles, the most vertical feet climbing, to the fast ascent of some cruel little bump somewhere in Michigan, we’ve done a bit of everything. Most of the challenges have focused on climbing, and that has been fun*.

Not for the Iceman. With a new section of singletrack added to bypass the veritable no-man’s land of logging near Sand Lakes, we stride proudly into unchartered territory. The Gent with the fastest time through the new section will win a cycling cap. Totally worth the potential tree ingestion if you take a bad corner.

The new part of the course comes 10.5 miles into the race, taking a left hander where the course would normally veer right. It’s tight, somewhat technical and almost constantly off-camber. Halfway through, at the bottom of a particularly difficult descent is a small ditch between two trees where a local rider recently bent a derailleur. “Schmidt’s Trench” is just one of number of potential snags, stumps and roots that make the 2 mile section a challenge for anyone riding fast.

The current fastest times from the club are Dean Murphey at 10:59 and Melissa Ryba at 14:14.

To be eligible, make sure you have a Strava account and join the kolo t.c. Gentlemen’s Club.