RiotGrrravel 2014

By : Lowrah · June 27, 2014

Photo by Kate Lockhart

This past weekend, a new race rolled out, for 30 miles of gravel and WTF-focused racing fun.  Riotgrrravel was organized and executed by Ellie Skelton, with the help of some cheerful volunteers.  A lot of Grease Rag friends raced, and I was happy to see the seed of the idea for Riotgrrravel planted in our Facebook group.  That is exactly why the Facebook group is a great place.  I hope this becomes an annual event, especially because I wasn't able to attend this year.  

I asked for impressions and recaps from the race, and got a great variety of responses!  Thank you to everyone that contributed, and please enjoy clicking through and reading about many firsts, lessons learned, and celebratory moments.  If you have a story or photos that you would like to share, email

Extra big props to race organizer Ellie for dealing with the crazy flooding we've been having and rerouting the race the day before the start.  Check out what the course looked like after our record-breaking rain this spring.

Source: Facebook

Way to roll with it, Ellie!

Join the Riotgrrravel Facebook page to stay connected with your fellow racers and get information about future events. 

Riotgrrravel organizer Ellie Skelton's Race Recap

My family was instrumental. I couldn’t have done it without their support. They really helped with a lot of the details like mapping the course, making the cue sheets, getting riders checked in and recording their times at the end.  Recording the race times and giving out prizes was a little jumbled, but I think everything was sorted out in the end.

We started brainstorming for next year as we drove out of Hastings. Even though the original route is more difficult, it’s also more scenic. We really would like riders to see it. We may offer a 30 mile and a 50 mile option that loops through the part that was flooded this year.  In all, I have been overwhelmed by how smoothly our first year went and am planning to give it another try next year.  I’m glad to be part of such a great community of bikers!

Read the rest on!

Morgen and Zinnia’s First Gravel Race: Riotgrrravel!

Photo by Kate Lockhart

Then we headed off to the church parking lot at the start of the course.  My heart sank a bit when I saw all the fancy, new, fast-looking cross bikes, touring bikes, mountain bikes, and fat bikes… I felt a bit naïve and a little bit like a freak for bringing my cumbersome Dutch city bike (not to mention a toddler) to the edge of farm country for my first gravel race.  I started getting a lot of questions like “so have you ever toured with her before?” and “how long is she generally good for on bike rides?” and I had to admit that I honestly had no idea how it was going to go, but I knew that if we needed to stop every ten minutes to get through it, that’s what we would do.  Many people were admiring the bike and giving me thumbs up for wanting to attempt this course with a small child on a cargobike but I was still feeling a tiny bit unsure.  Z was unfazed as she calmly collected a granola bar from the refreshment table.

Read the rest on!

It was really rad.

-Jenn Gallup

Top 10 things I liked about this years Riotgrrravel

1) seeing all the smiling WTF faces surrounding each other with laughter in anticipation of a fun 30 miles. 
2) The secret Llama around mile 10. 
3) Cartilage-Pizza Tow Truck Espinaca and Max Dingemans and all the other cheer leaders. 
4) The double hill, you know the one where you busted ass up, then were like ARGH! anotherone! and seeing my friends make it and grin after catching their breath. 
5) The bluebird that flew out in front of me at mile 25. 
6) My ride, Cuerva............Ms. fat tire bike extraordinaire. 
7) The winner of everything, because she did it on a Bakfiet with her daughter and picnic in tow. 
8) Sunlight and dust clouds. 
9) Enjoying the scenery and rolling fields of corn. 
10)Rolling away with smiles on our faces, blasting L7. 

Thanks to all who helped, rode, organized, smiled, and had fun.

-Luci Russell

Race Results

Check out the results here!

Thanks everyone, I had a fun time organizing my first race and my kids and partner were amazing volunteers and behind the scenes worker bees. It went off without a hitch. 82 rode off and 82 rode back. The times varied from 1 hour and 30 minutes to 3 hours and 40 minutes. Everyone rode great races and did their own ride. That's what it's all about.

-Ellie Skelton

Photo by Kate Lockhart

Kate Lockhart's Race Photos

Kate Lockhart documented the race, and captured some really beautiful moments.  Click through to her Flickr photo set.

Photo by Kate Lockhart

"RiotGRRRavel Wrap Up"

A few weeks ago I was blogging about how scared I was riding on gravel and how I didn't think I would be able to finish the gravel race - RiotGRRRaveL - that I signed up to ride. I went through Gravel Fears ... and Gravel Tears but then managed to get my bike adjusted better so that I was more comfortable. A day before the RiotGRRRaveL ride, I was still pretty nervous about riding the 30 some miles but planned to go ahead and give it a go. My goals for the ride were pretty basic:

    1. finish the ride
    2. average 10 mph
    3. have fun

Well, guess what? I finished the RiotGRRRaveL gravel bike race on Saturday and accomplished my goals and then some!

Myrna CG Mibus wrote a really complete recap of her RiotGrrravel race on her blog.  Click through to read more.

Leave a reply

Add Pingback