Virginia and New Jersey cyclists win elite titles at US Open Fat Bike Beach Championship

Fischer Maris (center) 2022 Elite Two Hour Race Champion – John Overton (left) third place – Nima Ebrahimnejad (right) second place – Courtesy of Robert B Butler

Donna Ventura (left) 2022 Elite Two-Hour Race Champion – Philicia Dawn (right) runner-up and former champion in 2018 and 2019 – Courtesy of Robert B Butler

Bikers approach the start line – 2022 US Open Fat Bike Beach Championship – Courtesy Robert B Butler

WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NORTH CARORLINE, USA, March 21, 2022 / — WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NORTH CAROLINA – Fischer Maris of Richmond, VA, and Donna Ventura of Long Branch, NJ, cycled to victory in the two penalties of this weekend- an elite one-hour race at the sixth US Open Fat Bike Beach Championship.

Terrific even in ideal conditions, this year’s weather added layers of grinding complexity with endless wind speeds of 20-25 miles per hour with gusts of up to 37 mph.

“The degree of difficulty was ten out of ten,” said Maris, usually a road runner or mountain biker. “The sand was so hard and so slow. On a road bike, you can keep up because you’re drafting, but all of that is eliminated. So you will use everything you have on the beach. Whoever is fittest will win.

“It was definitely brutal,” Ventura added. “I wasn’t sure what to expect as the race was a half mile loop. Each round seemed to be a little different. The wind was a challenge – the heat was tough, coming in 30-40 degrees in New Jersey. I tried to be careful and settle in so as not to waste all my energy fighting against the wind. The race was challenging – but great fun; it was a good race.

“We’re thrilled to have lots of riders from the Wilmington area, a large contingent from Raleigh, representation from Asheville and riders from Ohio, Virginia and New Jersey,” said Dave Ellegood, manager. racing and president of the Southern Off-Road. Cape Fear Chapter of the Bicycle Association. “Many runners have been training throughout the winter, so their physical condition is good. We have several age groups, male and female. Our 50+ is the biggest age group this year – it’s cool to see.

Podium winners by division

Two Hour Elite Race – Men’s Division

1. Fischer Maris, Richmond, Virginia
2. Nima Ebrahimnejad, Wilmington, North Carolina
3. John Overton, Wilmington, North Carolina

Two-Hour Elite Race – Women’s Division

1. Donna Ventura, Long Branch, New Jersey
2. Philicia Dawn, Pilot Mountain, North Carolina

Men’s Division Two-Hour Elite Race (40-49)

1. Jeremy Cavenaugh, Castle Hayne, North Carolina
2. Adam Kaufhold, Huntersville, North Carolina
3. Thomas Parinello, Locust Grove, Virginia

Men’s Division Two-Hour Elite Race (50+)

1. Dariusz Tyborowski, Zebulon, North Carolina
2. John Stanley, Leland, North Carolina
3. Noah Pierson, Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina

Two Hour Elite Race – Unicycle

1. James Turner, Wilmington, North Carolina

Men’s Division One-Hour Race

1. Lonnie Brooks, Raleigh, North Carolina
2. Peter Perry, Wilmington, North Carolina
3. Ethan Pierson, Wilmington, North Carolina

Women’s Division One-Hour Race

1. Jean Dylong, Asheville, North Carolina

One hour race Men’s Division (40-49)

1. Peter Perry, Wilmington, North Carolina
2. Brad Gardner, Wilmington, North Carolina
3. Antonio Donabo, Patrick County, Virginia

One hour race Men’s Division (50+)

1. Lonnie Brooks, Raleigh, North Carolina
2. Gib Palmer, Clinton, North Carolina
3. Mike Vandy, Cary, North Carolina

Proceeds from the US Open Fat Bike Beach Championship benefit Cape Fear SORBA, a non-profit organization dedicated to building and maintaining outdoor access trails. Event operations and start/finish lines were based in Wrightsville Beach at the host Blockade Runner Beach Resort. Sponsors in attendance were Alpha Mortgage and Bike Cycles of Wilmington.

Former Elite Champions include:

-Robert “Fear the Beard” Marion, Mt. Airy, North Carolina (2019, 2016)
-Philicia Dawn, Pilot Mountain, North Carolina (2019, 2018)
-John Overton, Wilmington, North Carolina (2018)
-Zdenka ‘Zoe’ Worsham, Raleigh, North Carolina (2017)
-Andrew Bailey, Piney Flats, Tennessee (2017)
-Jesse Piersol, Downington, Pennsylvania (2016)
-Ben “Thunder” Brown, Wilmington, North Carolina (2015)

Official race results website

Media and photo archive (photos added frequently)


Dave Ellegood, Race Director
Southern Off-Road Bicycle Association – Cape Fear Chapter President
[email protected]
Phone: 910-233-7987

Robert B Butler, Communications | PR

Permission Granted for Reprint and Redistribution

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