Spotted Horse Gravel Ultra

  • Spotted Horse Gravel Ultra 2018: Kyle Platts' Report

    Kyle Platts raced the cold and rainy Spotted Horse Gravel Ultraby Kyle Platts

    Spotted Horse Gravel Ultra: Short Course
    150 Mile Gravel Bike Race
    St. Charles, Iowa
    Saturday, October 6, 2018

    Sarah Cooper is certainly making a name for herself as a race director. 2018 is the third year for the Spotted Horse Gravel Ultra, and it ended up being the toughest year yet. The standard race is 200 miles, while you can opt to do the 150 mile “sprint” course.

    I am relatively new to gravel cycling and ultra cycling. In 2017, I rode the 150-mile sprint course on my Specialized Fatboy. For 2018, I decided to go for the 200-mile race on my BMC CrossMachine in ultra gravel trim.

    Unfortunately, a couple of mistakes and some bad luck ended my day early.

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  • Spotted Horse Gravel Ultra 2016: Katherine's Report

    by Katherine A. Roccasecca

    Spotted Horse Gravel Ultra: Katherine's Race ReportSpotted Horse Gravel Ultra: Short Course
    150 Mile Gravel Bike Race
    St. Charles, Iowa
    Saturday, October 29, 2016

    The Spotted Horse Gravel Ultra is Sarah Cooper's creation. Successful as a road and gravel ultracyclist, she wanted to step into the role of race director as well. The headline race was 200 miles, and she offered a 150-mile version for those who couldn't fathom riding 200 miles of gravel and dirt roads but still wanted to push themselves to their own version of epic. For both courses she promised, "the best big hills, small towns, old barns, rickety bridges, and B roads that I can find."

    I am primarily a mountain biker and had only ever done two 100-mile rides (one paved, one flat gravel, both last year) but bunches of 100K gravel rides. The 150-mile Spotted Horse Gravel Ultra felt epic yet possible, if I trained. I was the first to sign up when registration opened in May.

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