ODEN – Cool temperatures and lots of sunshine made for a perfect backdrop for the Inaugural Ouachita Challenge Gravel Grinder. Competitors set a blistering pace with 58 of the 119 cyclists finishing the course in under four hours.
Thomas Turner Set the initial course record with a time of three hours 14 minutes and 15 seconds. He led a pack of four cyclists up the hill to finish the event’s first gravel race.
Olivier Lavigueur finished in second place with a time of 3:14:47, followed by Carson Harrington with a time of 3:14:48 and Jason Alvarado with a time of 3:14.49.
Kyle Lockhause rounded out the Top Five with a time of 3:15:58. Andy Chasteen (3:16:47), Neil Simmons (3:17:16), Brent Findlay (3:18:39), Nicholas Nichols (3:19:10) and Nat Ross (3:20:20) rounded out the Top 10 in the Men’s division.
Tara Hileman finished second with a time of 3:38:33, followed by Caroline Poole with a time of 3:42:05.
Sara Sheets (3:43:38) and Jessica Nankman (3:56:09) finished in fourth and fifth place respectively.
Desiree Maragliano (4:10:33), Elizabeth Aguilera (4:15:45), Heide Nelson (4:19:43), Jessica Soroka (4:28:55) and Elizabeth Durrett (4:33:22) rounded out the Top 10..
There were only three single speed bikes to finish the course. Eli Orth was the first to finish with a time of 3:31:45 followed by Desiree Maragliano (4:10:33) and Bradford Bowen (4:13:41).
The Ouachita Challenge Race will be held Sunday, March 21. The 63 mile course will wind its way along parts of the Ouachita and Womble Trails while connecting on Highway 270 and other state highways in the area.