Fair Weather and Gentle Breezes Grace the 25th Cochise County Cycling Classic

Wednesday, October 17th, 2012

Richard DeBernardis, Founder & Executive Director announced that 284 event participants rode in the Sierra Vista Regional Health Center 25th Cochise County Cycling Classic in the 165, 97 and 49-mile distances.  Due to the start/finish line change from downtown Douglas to the Cochise County Fairgrounds on Leslie Canyon Road, distances and times for all three events increased slightly from 2011.

In the 165-mile event, Dan McGehee of Mesa, AZ finished in 6:49, adding another jewel to his string of wins in the long distance contests. Richard Horn of Tucson finished second, a few minutes back in a time of 6:52 with Shane Castle of Tucson rounding out the top three in 6:57. Check our El Tour Facebook page for pictures of the top male finishers in each distance.

Jessica Walker was the 1st Place Woman in the 165-mile event. Photo: Elaine Mariolle

The top three women finishers in the 165-mile event were: Jessica Walker, 9:33, Tucson;  Susan Reed, 11:18, Tucson; and Katherine Rice, 14:04, Chandler, AZ. They are a pretty ambitious group. Jessica Walker, a belly dancing instructor, finished her ride, showered at the Fairgrounds and then headed back to Tucson for three belly dancing performances at the Tucson Meet Yourself Folklife Festival. Susan Reed, 66 years young, also won the 1st Place Recumbent Award.  Katherine Rice also won the City of Douglas Award for being the last 165-mile finisher.

The 97-mile event came down to a bunch sprint with the following three men finishing in 4:07: Jason Tullous of Colorado Springs, CO; Kurt Garbe, Tucson; and Scott Flanders, Sierra Vista, AZ. In the women’s division, first through third place finishers are: Jennifer Jen, 4:41, Tucson, Maria Nunes, 4:50 Tucson; Lynn Meyers, 5:05, Tucson, AZ.

The 49-Mile Male first through third place finishers, all with times of 2:01 are: A. J. Peil, Tucson; Mike Ciasca, Tucson; Seth Lewkowitz, Paradise Valley, AZ. The 49-Mile Female first through third place are: Janice Truitt, 2:35, Oro Valley, AZ; Ella Melito, 2:41, Sierra Vista, AZ; Amanda Bowman-Wann, 2:50, Tucson, AZ.

The following  Individual Awards are determined by event officials:

Ike Shipman completes the 97-mile event after eight flat tires! Photo: Elaine Mariolle

The 4C’s Rider Award goes to the rider who embodies the spirit of the event ~ sportsmanship, resilience, and camaraderie. Ike Shipman of Tucson, AZ was awarded the 4C’s Rider Award for his positive attitude and determination to finish the 97-mile event despite eight flat tires! Ike was signed up for the 165-mile event, but after a handful of flats, no more spare tubes and lots of time on the side of the road, he switched to the 97-mile event. “Thank you to all the support volunteers and fellow riders who helped ~ I would never have finished,” Shipman said. It was Ike’s birthday and his first century ride. He sported a lei of spent tubes and enjoyed a slice of cake at the finish line.

Outstanding Support Crew goes to Landon Vincent’s solo crew member and girlfriend, Meghan McFarlane, who generously helped him as well as other riders. “I couldn’t have done it without my wonderful girlfriend,” he said. Landon bought a bike so he could ride Tour of the Tucson Mountains last year and fell in love with bicycling.  This year he set his sights on the Quad Crown Award (finishing the long distance options in each of the four Perimeter events – El Tour de Mesa, Tour of the Tucson Mountains, Cochise Classic and El Tour de Tucson). Landon has complete three events this year and will earn his Quad Crown Award when he finishes El Tour next month! Meghan got him to the finish and was a joy for officials as well as other riders and crew.

Outstanding Bike Patrol Award goes to Andy Lamb (left), pictured here helping Ike Shipman with one of his many flats. Photo: Elaine Mariolle

Outstanding Bike Patrol goes to Andy Lamb, pictured left, helping Ike Shipman with one of several flats he fixed for Ike. Once Ike rolled away to the finish, Andy helped shepherd the last of the 49-mile riders.

The 2012 Cochise Classic honored long-time volunteers Leila & Totten Warfield of Tucson.  Mr. & Mrs. Warfield retired in 1985 and has volunteered at Perimeter Bicycling’s office and at events since the first Cochise Classic in 1987.

The 2012 Cochise Classic in Douglas benefits Perimeter Bicycling Association of America, Inc. and Douglas Association For Retarded Citizens (DARC) whose mission is to support and involve people with developmental disabilities within the Douglas community. “Approximately $3,000 was raised for the Douglas Association for Retarded Citizens (DARC) of Douglas, AZ,” said Richard J. DeBernardis, president and founder of Perimeter Bicycling.   Since its inception, the Cochise Classic has raised over $106,000 for both DARC and the Arthritis Foundation.  The 2012 Cochise Classic receives support and cooperation from the Sierra Vista Regional Health Center, City of Douglas Police & Fire Departments, United States Border Patrol, Southwest Gas; City of Bisbee, Cochise County, visitsierravista.com, Freeport McMoRan, Dakotapro.biz, Polar Bottle, PuroClean, Cochise County Fairgrounds, Pactimo, Gadsden Hotel, Motel 6-Douglas, Douglas Dispatch, Sierra Vista Herald, KDAP Radio and Clif Bar.

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