The 2000 Furnace Creek 508
by John Hughes
At the Furnace Creek 508 on October 14-16, 2000, 45 solo riders, two tandems and eight 4-person teams started in benign conditions. Temperatures were in the 80s on Saturday with little breeze — the windmills on the second climb were barely turning!
The men’s tandem “Red Robin” led from the start. Roehl Caragao and Bob Smith from Bakersfield are both team veterans and attacked the course, arriving at TS #1 in California City a minute before the first solo riders: Kaname Sakurai, Istvan Makk, and Andrew Bohannon. The mixed tandem of Mike Mosely and Cindy Staiger was fourth through the time station. RAAM veteran Fabio Biasiolo was in fifth and Barclay Brown, riding a faired recumbent, was sixth, only 11 minutes behind the Red Robin.
When the race arrived at TS #3 in Furnace Creek (252 miles), riders had climbed the four thousand foot climb up Towne Pass (with sections of 10-13%) and then blasted down at 55 mph in the dark! Barclay Brown overheated his rims on the descent and blew a tire — his skin, clothing and fairing all required patching. […]
Despite his crash, Barclay Brown set a course record of 40:49:31 for an HPV. Ron Bobb, 55 set an age group HPV course record of 42:32:56 and qualified for RAAM.