Race Report: H2H MTB Race - Round 5

Jun 26, 2019
by Kristine Contento-Angell  
Wendi Sebastian-Takakura about to cross the timing pad to log another 5.57mile lap in the Women's Pro/Open field. She cranks out nearly 17 miles to earn her spot on the podium.

Lewis Morris Challenge presented by Marty's Reliable Cycles | A.C. Daughtry Security H2H Series Race #5

Words by Eric Noonan & Kristine Contento-Angell | Photos by Elana Laciofano

We had a great day for the 2019 Lewis Morris Challenge in Morristown, NJ on Sunday, June 23, 2019. The weather gods have been soaking New Jersey lately but the sun was out for the weekend, drying up the trails and shining down on race day. The course drained quickly from the week-long rain storm and racers commented on how well the course was riding.

The Lewis Morris Challenge course is well... challenging. Compared to the other racecourses in the series, it is quite hilly and constantly undulating - riders are either climbing or descending.

The only truly flat section is the start/finish stretch.

Riders are looking cooked by the end of their races.

Some of the climbs are smooth single track, while other climbs are covered in thick swatches of crisscrossing roots or loose, choppy rock. The descents include a variety of terrain as well, from smooth, hard pack single track, to off-camber rooty switchbacks. The course is fun and great for all abilities, but it takes some skill to ride it fast.

Henry Sampers had no trouble drilling the descents. Photo credit Nicola Hartery-Sampers

Marty Epstein and the team at Marty's Reliable Cycle has been hosting the Lewis Morris Challenge since the early ’90s. Marty Epstein was always involved in putting on cycling events for the local community and he is credited with putting on New Jersey’s first mountain bike race. Sadly, Marty passed away this year after a long battle with cancer, but his memory lives on. He loved the cycling community and hosting mountain bike races were important to him. We will continue to have the Lewis Morris Challenge in his memory.

Marty would have been very proud of the volunteers who helped with registration, course marshaling and race staging. Things went very smoothly and the races went off on time.
A mechanic from Marty's shop was offering neutral support to all of the racers before, during and after the races.

A couple more registration helpers.

Endurance riders Frank Glomb & Cuneyt Eviner has their game faces on at staging.

Cadence Tanis took the win in the Cat 2/3 Junior Women's (10-1Cool class.
Samuel Torres rolls across the finish with a 1:12 lead over Noel Tebangin in the Cat 3 Master's Men (45+) class.

Sprinting HARD to the finish line.

Eric Oishi and Brian Benson are all smiles before the of the Cat 1 races.

The Cat 3 Men charge into the first climb of the course - it's a long, gradual climb that becomes progressively steeper and more technical.
Endurance riders John Peragine & Leonardo Lopez.

Ken Welch charges through the loose rock just ahead of Richard Mascaolo. Photo credit Tom Mayosky

We had some great raffle prizes from Shimano and Bell Sports. Riders who registered early for the race were entered to win prizes like a pair of Shimano XTR pedals and Bell 4Forty helmet. Thank you to our local Shimano rep Wayne and Bell sports rep Mark.

The Jersey Off Road Bicycle Association (JORBA) was on site educating riders about trail maintenance and recruiting new members.

Racers and spectators gather in the picnic area throughout the day. Positioned along the finish stretch, it's the perfect spot to drink, eat and cheer.

The Cat 2 Men (19-44) are relaxed before their race.

We would also like to thank our local NICA N.J. riders and coaches who came to race. Marty’s Reliable Cycle and Marty himself were very involved in bringing NICA to the state of New Jersey and it was great to see all the young people out there racing bikes.

Justin Barry, Spencer Ketcham & Ronit Patil of the NJ NICA team Jersey Shore Tidal Waves.

The Cat 3 Junior Men 10-14 podium is stacked with NJ NICA riders. 1st - Jacob Marcus; 2nd - Lukas Donnelly; 3rd - Kevin Shull
Cat 2 Junior Men 10-14 podium: 1st Dylan Sampers; 2nd - Luke Wolter; 3rd - Fin Bailey

Tira Denny leads Kristine Contento-Angell up the first climb in the Women's Pro/Open category. Photo credit Tom Mayosky

Cat 3 Women's podium: 1st - Laura Teetz ;2nd - Karin Reeve; 3rd - Aimee Layton;
This little patriot cheers on a Highlands Composite NICA athlete as he heads towards the finish line.

Christopher Brawley charges ahead of Victor Schepisi in the Men's Cat 1/2 45+ class. Photo credit Tom Mayosky

Men's Pro/Open Podium: 1st - Gregg Galletta; 2nd - Lucas Smallidge; 3rd - Roger Aspholm; 4th - Szymon Niemotko; 5th - Rich Wolter.

Official results

Race Promoter Contact: Marty's Reliable Cycle
Follow Marty's on Facebook @MartysReliableCycle or Instagram @martysreliable

H2H Race Contact - H2Hraceinfo@gmail.com
H2H Race Schedule & Series information: h2hrace.com
Follow H2H Race on Instagram: @h2h_race or Facebook @h2hrace


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