My life in race shirts: Cascades Edge Biathlon, 1990

Joe Dudman started running road races as a sophomore in high school, circa 1980. Since that time he has accumulated over 540 race T-shirts (Yes, he finally got around to counting them!) Some of them evoke special memories and (hopefully) interesting stories. In this recurring series, he recounts some of them for Run Oregon readers.

Joe's shirt from the 1990 Cascades Edge Biathlon, in Molalla

Joe’s shirt from the 1990 Cascades Edge Biathlon, in Molalla

My first and so far only duathlon (despite the name, this event consisted of running and cycling, NOT running and shooting). A slightly unconventional format, the race began with a 10k run through the streets of Molalla, followed by a 30k ride out in the countryside.

I think I was in 2nd place after the run, but as expected, once I made the transition to my seldom-ridden 12-speed red Fuji and hit the highway, I was quickly swallowed up by the pack.

I was just doing it for fun, so I didn’t care about place, but the steady stream of questions about mechanical problems (as people couldn’t believe I was riding so slowly without a flat tire, loose chain, or another velocipedic malfunction) got a little old.

Not surprisingly, the “Cascades Edge” consists of some formidable hills, and it was during this race that I concluded that riding uphill is much more difficult than running uphill, because the bike is “inclined” (get it?) to roll back down, so the effort is doubled. Let’s just say it took a looong time to complete the cycling leg, and I got off and ran up some of the steeper hills pushing my bike, because for me it was more efficient!

I was half hoping to at least win the “Novice” division for first-timers, but I didn’t even manage that. Still, it was a fun and memorable experience nonetheless, and the rural countryside around Molalla was very scenic. Unfortunately, my bike was stolen out of my garage a couple weeks later, with my race number still on the frame, and my duathlon career was over almost before it began.

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