2018 miniSOL and Junior SOL: Singlespeeds, Vomit, and Victory by Will Unger


It was a very special night, the first time we #YOUTHS started with the adults. It was also the first time we had not one but two people puke-more on that later.  Being our first time starting with the adults, it was chaotic to say the least. It was like what stereotypical Black Friday shopping looks like. Note to self: to get good at mass starts, go Black Friday shopping. In the midst of all the chaos, Norte’s Kyan Olshove darted through the masses with Wunger and Nate Madion trailing closely behind. When the trio reached the Vasa CC climb, Wunger attacked and caught up to Kyan. The two latched onto a paceline with a few pedal smashers like Emma Schwab and Lauri Brockmiller.

Shortly after, Kyan managed to drop Wunger due to sand not faring well with his cross bike. After that, Wunger never saw Kyan again. At this point, Nate had latched onto a paceline containing some SOL veterans and was advancing on Wunger. They eventually caught him on the Power Section and Wunger joined the pack. As soon as they got to the rock, Wunger knew he would get dropped by the mountain bikes on the downhills that were soon to come. Halfway through the gravel stretch, he attacked and  put a gap between him and the group that held until the wall bypass. At this point, Nate was thoroughly regretting the Nutella and single boneless chicken wing he ate prior to the race.

When Wunger got caught, he settled into the front half of the group. At Anita’s hill, Nate was really regretting his single pre-race meal and puked. While Nate was “doing his thing” Wunger created a sizeable gap. After Nate was done, he pushed in attempt to catch Wunger but the gap was too big. Kyan placed first with a time of 40:28, Wunger was second with a time of 42:38, and Nate was third with a time of 43:47.

Kudos to Drew Cummins for doing a 100k ride just 12 hours prior to SOL. Gwen Urbain made her SOL debut with an injured and taped right foot. Reese Cummins did a full lighthouse ride the day before and Charlie Black was the only Junior SOL rider to ride a single speed!

In the Mini SOL division, Liam Wierzba took the win and Hayden Murray took second. Grady Ellis took third with a sprint finish against Ben Burley. Afterwards, Ben realized he may have gone too hard and suffered the same fate as Nate.

The Mini SOL honorable mention goes to Grady Ellis (again) for being the only Mini SOL single speed rider.

In the Junior SOL overall, Wunger is first with 21 points, Drew Cummins is second with 11 points, and Reese Cummins and Charlie Black are tied for third with 9 points. In the Mini SOL overall, Grady Ellis is in the lead with 18 points, Liam Wiersba is second with 14 points, and Hayden Murray is third with 12 points.

Just a quick announcement, if you do Junior or Mini SOL and want to have a chance at the overall, you have to enter your time at elgruponorte.org/sol

The Junior SOL overall standings are right here.

The Mini SOL overall standings are right here.

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