2007 Florida Challenge Pictures
2007 Florida Challenge Pictures
Saturday March 10th, 2007

Race Report by Shari Bernhard
Pictures by Chris and Dora Cortez
Pictures by Jay Copp

Pictures by Sergio Agramonte
John Schlitter mugs for the camera before proceeding to demolish all competition on his Carbon Bacchetta Aero. 
Bacchetta had a couple  new bikes on display, this one is a CLWB.
This one is the Bacchetta LWB, people who rode it said it was quite comfortable. Now all they need is a lowracer... 
 The Chris and Dora Cortez had quite a van load, bringing 3 lowracers, the AMB timing system, and sorted sundries down from the Chicago area for the races.
Jim Iwaskow displays the latest iteration of his hand built carbon fiber SWB bike. This year it sports a new aero handle bar and custom adjustable stem, as well as a new fork with titatium steer tube. Jim is working on a tailbox as well.
Racers line up for the one mile sprint along the front straightaway of the half mile road course.
 Reg Rodaro sprints for the finish line on one of his home built bikes. Note the racing sandals...
Sara Kay Carrell cranks it toward the finish line during her one mile spint
Race Report by Shari Bernhard

What a great turnout for the 7th Annual HPRA Florida Challenge Race - 26 riders! As usual, most of the participants were from out of state. Of the racers from Florida, only 4 were from Broward or Miami-Dade County. I sure would like to see more local interest, but it is heartwarming that so many people take the time to come on down from points north for this two-day event.

Yes, I said last year that I wasn’t going to do a Velodrome race on Sunday, but Garrie Hill and Warren Beauchamp were here to do most of the hard work and run the electronic timing gear, and aside from trike issues on the V’drome (more on that later), the races went off without a hitch.

The weather is the big draw for the out-of-staters. It was a picture-perfect weekend! The temps were cool in the morning, warming up to the low 80s by afternoon, with bright sunshine and mild breezes picking up later in the day as usual.

I had fewer volunteers this year, with Walt Smyser’s departure for a better job in Georgia and Sue Hernandez’s mom in the hospital. Jose Hernandez stuck around to help me with tech inspections before heading out to be with his family – we wish them well.

In the Stock category on the Criterium track on Saturday, John Schlitter was again the overall winner, with Warren hot on his heels and Jay “Zipper Neck” Copp picking up a 3rd place title. John bested his last year’s 200 M Flying Sprint time of 13.785 (32.4545 mph) with a 13:35 second time for a top speed of 33.51 mph. He also improved over his 2006 1 Mile TT speed of 26.117 mph by over a second, to 27.30.

Local rider Jose Berrizbeita took the top spot in Superstock, managing to bump Canadian Jim Iwaskow down to second overall (considering Jose rides year-round while this was Jim’s first race in months, that’s not too shabby), and in a stunning upset over favored Chris Cortez, local Joel Lukacher came in at 3rd place. Chris DNF’ed in the Last Man Out race after being nudged off the track. His form was great during all the other races, placing 2nd or 3rd. Unfortunately, it’s a points thing.

The SuperStreet category winner was Jay Hoover over 2nd Place Mike Kring (who rode in 3 different classes over the two days), StreamLiner honors went to Rich Meyers over Garrie Hill. In the Velodrome Race on Sunday, Rich blew away all other riders with 98 laps! John, in 2nd place, had 92 laps.

The Women’s division was dominated by Sara Kay Carrell, who took 1st in every race. Breathing down her neck was Dora Cortez, who placed 2nd across the board. Robin Hayes and Peggy Kring, both on Trikes, had a great showing, switching off 3rd and 4th places. Robin took a spill on the Velodrome, which is steeply banked and needs a speed of at least 18 mph to maintain good control. In a testament to her spirit and drive, she came back to do the trike-specific lap race in the skate track ring. The Band-aids didn’t slow her down a bit.

As always, I was gratified and delighted that so many people traveled from so far away to support this event – thank you all! I know it’s most likely the weather as opposed to my sparkling personality that brings them back every year, but whatever the reason, as soon as I recover from this event, I’ll consider doing it again. I’d prefer someone else take over the reins, especially if it can be done in central FL, but we’ll see what happens as the months pass.

Thanks SO much to our many sponsors: Bacchetta Bikes, Bicycle Outfitters, The Bicycle Spot, Biscayne Bay Pilots Association, Cycling Solutions, EZ Biker, and PowerOn Cycling. Thanks also to Garrie Hill for the beautiful picture of the old time wheelmen’s group, and to Warren for his computer equipment and expertise.

Please see the Race Results at recumbents.com/HPRA for all the technical details.


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