Livermore Wins In Yankton

  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/ps2o8597dsgw/public_html/includes/file.inc on line 644.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/ps2o8597dsgw/public_html/includes/file.inc on line 644.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/ps2o8597dsgw/public_html/includes/file.inc on line 644.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/ps2o8597dsgw/public_html/includes/file.inc on line 644.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/ps2o8597dsgw/public_html/includes/file.inc on line 644.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/ps2o8597dsgw/public_html/includes/file.inc on line 644.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/ps2o8597dsgw/public_html/includes/file.inc on line 644.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/ps2o8597dsgw/public_html/includes/file.inc on line 644.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/ps2o8597dsgw/public_html/includes/file.inc on line 644.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/ps2o8597dsgw/public_html/includes/file.inc on line 644.

Written by: Rob Livermore

The Yankton River Rat Bike Race is part of a big event that includes a marathon, a half marathon, and 5K running events. It may be Siouxland's best kept secret as far as mountain bike races go. They bill it as a "cyclocross" race, but make no bones about it- it's a mountain bike race.

The course is a total of 22 miles, and is part out and back, with a little bit of single track loop mixed in on the Nebraska side of the river. Starting at the Yankton River Front park, the course rides through residential streets for a couple miles, then turns off onto a dirt road along the Missouri River. That road quickly dead ends and turns into a sandy farm road sandwiched between the Missouri River and a corn field. At that point, the sand was so deep that many people got off and pushed their bikes. Thankfully, I was riding a 29er, and the big wheels helped me stay upright for the most part, so a group of five or so of us rode through as best we could.

Then it was onto another dirt road for about half a mile. At that point, another rider and I seperated ourselves from the group.

The course then turned into Chief White Crane Rec Area, and some nice smooth blacktop. The headwind was very strong on this road, as there wasn't much windbreak. So the other guy and I worked together, taking turns riding each other's wheel. Off the blacktop was a steep climb up to Gavins Point Dam. That was when I made a move. The other racer looked like he was struggling up the climb, so when we got to the top and crossed the dam, I took off. And that was the last time I saw anybody else.

On the Nebraska side, the course took another climb up 'Nebraska 121' to a bluff where there was a trailhead for some singletrack near Crofton's Golf Course. This area was a loop filled with the aformentioned single track, some dirt roads, a couple creek crossings, a little golf course path, and some horse trails. There were some long steep climbs that really pushed my fitness. But soon enough the loop was over, and I was back on cement heading back to the dam.

Heading back was uneventful. I kept looking back for the other guy, but he wasn't there. The wind was at my back, and I just kept pushing hard and enjoying the scenery. I believe that I ended up winning the race by about 20 minutes or so.

This was the second annual race, and the second time I won it. There were only about 15 or so riders who braved the cold wind, but if the word gets out, this could become a big event. It's a very diverse course, and definitely keeps you interested. -Posted 4/27/11