Wheeler Closes the Deal
When conditions are very hot, it can be an advantage coming from Phoenix, Arizona, like race winner Chuck Wheeler. While Pennsylvanian Rob Lichtenwalner climbed off at 9 a.m., Wheeler was out enjoying the morning sun and logging more laps until 10:18. He completed seventeen laps for a total of 173.4 miles, to record his first win at a Granny Gear Productions race.
"I've been doing 24s for about ten years now, but this is only my second Granny Gear race," he said, looking surprisingly fresh and chipper at the finish.
Last year Wheeler competed at Moab, where he was 29th after the first lap, stayed out of the top fifteen until nightfall, and then started to climb up the rankings to finish the race in fourth spot.
"I don't really have a strategy," explained Chuck, "I just go out and ride and try to stay constant. It works less frequently now that a lot of riders are getting so good."
"I'm not used to racing in those kinds of temperature," said Rob Lichtenwalner at 9 o'clock on Sunday morning. He'd done the math, realized that he wasn't going to catch Chuck Wheeler, and that Eddie O'Dea wasn't going to catch him, so he climbed off and went for an early sleep. "I'm happy with second place points. It gets my series title defense off to a good start," he said.