The good ol’ 24 Minute Finale. An appropriately chaotic end to the rather loose definition of racing that is the STP season. All the usual components but with a little bit of strategy to keep everyone competitive. You have 24 minutes to complete as many abbreviated Coyote Grande loops as possible. You must actually ride a minimum of three laps. Every baron stop also counts as a lap. There were virgin sodas for the young guns, and sets of 15 push ups were also accepted as a baron. More on that later.
Out of the gates Yeti and The Butcher stopped to baron on lap 1 giving them an early leg up. But when the fast kids come around you start to see the strategies play out. Some hammer all three laps then hit the cooler. Others split them out among each loop. Gerrit, Goodman (SS), and Sowers all went with the traditional 1:1 ratio. Wentzel and Grasshopper were peppering push ups into their workout.
We included the push ups as an option since they’ve been doled out in lieu of beverages all season. And the number of NA riders has stayed steady. In my mind’s eye they were an extra option for those who may have exhausted the soda stock. However the push ups became a de facto free-throw lap, padding the counts of some doing multiple sets. This I did not account for. But this is an amateur party race, so if you can find a loophole in the “rules”, go nuts. That’s part of the fun. This ain’t the USAC.
In the end there was only one crash, one puke that I’m aware of, and plenty of drama with the leaders trying to one up each other in the final minutes. It’s interesting that the final results of this one race don’t look too far off from what we saw in most of the regular season. i.e. No mid-pack regular stepped up to flex their liver or arms enough to dethrone the normal podium names. The result of which was a rather fast and messy shootout.
Wentzel took the 24 Minute win on paper, edging Goodman (SS) by one actual lap. Though this time we opted to resurrect an old STP tradition, a shootout. The top 5-6 toed the line once more for a playoff lap to decide the crown. Fastest to shotgun a beverage then rip a dirt jump loop back to the finish takes it all. And a couple minutes later a wobbly Gerrit swerved his way back, complete with headlight flipped backwards for maximum difficulty.
- STP 2017 Champion – Luis Cerna
- Women’s Champion – Elaine Stanton
- 24 Minute Champion – Gerrit
- 24 Minute “King of the Cooler” – Wentzel
From there we stuck to tradition and hit Spinelli’s for some pizza and $1 PBR’s. Except this week most of the crowd showed up and they got their asses handed to them. But they seemed to enjoy the chaos. Plus Grasshopper bought most of the bar a round, so cheers mate.
~ 21 recorded races
~ 116 individual names overall
~ 40+ showed for at least 1/3 of the season
~ $500+ donated to baron supplies
~ Paul C. goes wire to wire with perfect attendance
~ Melissa Goodman represented the ladies 17 times
Thanks everyone for a great season! Keep an eye out for random Winter events and group rides. We’ll keep you abreast of the proposed Papago Preserve meetings; next one October 19th. And don’t forget Tempe Cyclocross Tuesday starts next week too.
See you next Spring kids.
|2||Cody Goodman (SS)||5||9||14|
|3||Goat Socks Luis||7||6||13|
|10||Desert Yeti ☺||4||1||5|