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Riverwest 24: And the Winner Is…Us!

Photo by Paul Kjelland   The second annual Riverwest 24 kicked off July 24 at 7PM after an opening ceremony that featured bagpipers and talks of encouragement by third district alderman Nik Kovac and Koss Headphones president John Koss. 400 some bicyclists then hit the streets riding the four mile route and stopping at bonus checkpoints at local establishments on or nearby the course. Several events such as block parties, bike-in movies, and a 24 hour concert set by Portland band Why I Must Be Careful tied into the race.   Despite gloomy predictions from armchair weathermen, the weather remained nice for most of the race, and the race and the riders stayed safe without any major incidents. Team Riverwest Tandemic won the tandem bicycle division with 36 laps and 12 bonus checkpoints. Hero Squad won the Team A Class with 73 laps and 22 bonuses. There was a tie for the Team B Class between 3BR and Noon in Sullivan, both with 77 laps and 22 bonuses. Lastly there was an interesting turn of events in the solo class division. Xav LePlae, last year’s Riverwest 24 solo champ, again won the title with 55 big laps and 22 bonuses. There was a tie for second place, with Team Sobelman (aka Evan Pack) completing 62 laps and 13 bonuses and Trevor Merck with 56 laps and 19 bonuses, tieing the two at 75 points. In a show of sportsmanship, LePlae handed Pack his trophy because he had completed more laps and did not have time to complete one of the checkpoints. LePlae’s generous and friendly gesture showed the true spirit of this community event.