ODEN – A fast track and cool conditions resulted in two cyclists breaking the previous course record Sunday in the Ouachita Challenge Race.
David Krimstock of Carbondale, Colorado broke the previous course record of 4:31:50 with a winning time of 4:26:52. Second place finisher Olivier Lavigueur of Little Rock, Arkansas also bested the previous record with a time of 4:31:17. The previous record was set in 2016 by Brandon Melott of Warr Acres, Oklahoma.
The Challenge had 191 riders this year from 17 states compete Sunday. The Tour, which took place Saturday, fielded just over 200 mountain bikers.
Cyclists bragged on the course which featured excellent conditions for the race. Overcast skies kept the temperature in the 50’s all day. The overcast skies produced intermittent rain, but it wasn’t enough to muddy the trail to the point of slowing the course for the cyclists.
Top Five Overall finishers:
1st – David Krimstock (Carbondale, CO) 4:26:52
2nd – Olivier Lavigueur (Little Rock, AR) 4:31:17
3rd – Micah Gordon (Kansas City, MO) 4:34:30
4th – Austin Morris (Colcord, OK) 4:37:43
5th – Travis Donn (Kansas City, MO) 4:40:54
Hart Robinson of Memphis, Tennessee was the fastest single speed cyclist on the day. His time of 4:45:12 narrowly bested Brandon Melott’s time of 4:45:19 from 2012. Chris Rodgers of Yukon, Oklahoma finished second with a time of 5:08:18.
Top Five Single Speed Men Cyclists:
1st – Hart Robinson (Memphis, TN) 4:45:12
2nd – Chris Rodgers (Yukon, OK) 5:08:18
3rd – Brian Guice (Little Rock, AR) 5:16:20
4th – Chad Sprague (Jenks, OK) 5:23:24
5th – Corey White (Hobart, OK) 5:23:24)
Sara Sheets was the top female finisher with a time of 5:29:58. She finished within four minutes of her 2015 winning time of 5:25:04. Jessica Rawlins holds the fastest time for females with a time of 5:18:42 which was set in 2013. Race organizers created a women’s category in 2012.
Top Five Women Finishers:
1st – Sara Sheets (Arkansas) 5:29:58
2nd – Amanda Lappe (St. Charles, MO) 5:47:29
3rd – Roxzanne Feagan (Omaha, NE) 5:49:12
4th – Rachel Furman (Little Rock, AR) 5:56:31
5th – Jane Ziegler (Tulsa, OK) 6:01:41
Two women competed in a women’s single speed category with Jona Parker of Hot Springs, Arkansas finishing first with a time of 6:53:52. Maria Esswein of St. Louis, Missouri finished second with a time of 7:17:46.
The Tour cyclists faced warmer conditions Saturday with the temperature reaching into the lower 80’s. Daniel Halpain of Alexander, Arkansas crossed the finish line first with a time of 4:32:06. Bryan Fawley of Dallas, Texas turned in the second fastest time of 4:48:14.
Top Five Male Finishers:
1st – Daniel Haplain (Alexander, AR) 4:32:06
2nd – Bryan Fawley (Dallas, TX) 4:48:14
3rd – Steven Allen (Allen, TX) 4:57:36
4th – Austin Gardner (Littleton, CO) 5:01:31
5th – Cody Taylor (Shreveport, LA) 5:02:22
Lisa Uranga of Lewisville, Texas was the first woman to cross the finish line with a time of 5:42:24. Kourtney Fontenault of Plano, Texas was second with a time of 5:50:23.
Top Five Female Finishers:
1st – Lisa Uranga (Lewsiville, TX) 5:42:24
2nd – Kourtney Fontenault (Plano, TX) 5:50:23
3rd – Kim McLain (Bossier City, LA) 6:16:15
4th – Laurie Simpson (Whitehouse, TX) 6:27:52
5th – Denise Mills (Jackson, MS) 6:49:50
The Ouachita Challenge and the Ouachita Challenge Tour takes place in March of each year. The Ouachita Challenge is one of the most anticipated mountain bike races in the region with registration filling up in minutes each year.
The race begins and ends at Oden High School. The course traverses 60 plus miles along the Ouachita Trail and Womble Trail. The highlight of the course is the ride up and down Blowout Mountain.
The Tour, while not technically a race, allows up to 250 cyclists an opportunity to share the experience each year. The course follows the race course closely with cyclists riding around Blowout Mountain instead of over it.
For more information on the annual race or tour, or for complete results of the race and the tour visit ouachitachallenge.com