The trails were kind to fatbikers at this year’s Iditarod Trail Invitational. While the world has been watching the teams of four-legged critters struggle through snowless patches of trail in the regular Iditarod race, a handful of hardy folks have mostly been avoiding the headlines while pedaling, running, and skiing the route for almost two weeks.
It has been a remarkable year for the cyclists. Jeff Oatley of Alaska set a new record for the 1000 mile race, covering the distance in 10 days, 2 hours, and 53 minutes. Perhaps warming up the state for the upcoming Single Speed World Championships this summer, Aiden Harding flew in from the UK to set a new record for single speeders on the course, taking second place overall in 11 days, 4 hours, and 15 minutes. Read the rest of the race records here. You should also check out the new records set in the Susitna 50 and 100 races that took place a few weeks ago. Another example of what fatties can do on hard packed trails.
Alaska Dispatch has some coverage of the event that you can take a look at. First, a bit about Oatley, and then a little about Harding (you may have to skip a few snippets of news to find the good stuff on cycling).
Winter biking isn’t exactly new to Alaska. You can read about the Klondike Bicycle and Alaskan wheelmen at the Alaska Historical Society [link].