Here at the Almanzo World Headquarters we've been milling over the future of things for the last six months. So far we've examined plans to walk away from everything and let it all live on as a memory. We've discussed potential plans to limit the number of riders to offset organizational costs. We've considered having one more full swing at things and then turning it into an annual ride that just sort of happens (a la Critical Mass). We've poured over all of it and what we came to was scrapping all of our previous ideas and raising the bar.
This year, for the first time ever, we are offering two simultaneous events. The original Almanzo 100 and the Royal 162. What is the difference? We're happy to explain.
First, the Almanzo 100:
100 miles of rolling gravel roads through Southeastern Minnesota.
No outside support.
12 hour window to finish.
Second, the Royal 162:
162 miles of rolling gravel roads through Southeastern Minnesota.
No outside support.
15 hour window to finish.
Why the addition of the 162? When the first Almanzo 100 was raced in 2007 the field was 12 people (4 of whom finished) and the reviews were unanimous that the course was difficult. The following two years the numbers grew and the times got faster. Last year we had 34 people finish under 6 hours...that is simply amazing! With the faster finishes and growing numbers we've gathered that while still difficult for the likes of us, there are riders out there that can finish 100 miles with ease. So, this year we've decided to raise the bar and try to make a portion of the Almanzo more difficult for those looking for that extra challenge. Sure, 162 miles isn't for everyone and we don't expect everyone to sign up for it (that's why we've kept the 100 and always will), but we know that there are racers out there looking for more and that's why we've decided to add on.
The registration process will remain the same, we only ask that when filling out your cards please make a note as to which event you'd like to enter. A simple "100" or "162" would be fine, but go at it as you wish.
Questions? Let us know.