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Cibola Beacon FEB. 25, 2011

Winner Josiah Middaugh crosses the finish line.

28th Quad: old favorite By Mark Teshima Beacon Staff Writer



Josiah Middaugh crosses the finish line.


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t is an epic challenge,” explained Josiah Middaugh as he chowed a freshly cut sandwich. “Other races are in circuits, but this one is unique. You climb a mountain.” Middaugh claimed the top prize of $1,000 in just three and a half hours, for his sixth win in the Mount Taylor Quadrathlon. From 2003-08 Middaugh dominated the male competition before taking a break from the race. Middaugh, of Vail, Colo., found the race to be just as challenging with fellow pro-athletes Brian Smith and 2009 and 2010 Quad

winner Travis Macy present. Macy set an incredibly fast pace to best his personal Quad record by four minutes, however Smith and Middaugh would lead the pack home. Smith overtook the champion after a nasty spill near the end of the downhill ski portion. Many racers expressed sloping with terrifying speeds with ice on the backside of the mountain and tumbles near the location. Smith went into the run/ski transition with the lead, but problems with his boots cost him dear seconds. Middaugh flowed into running shoes and blasted down the mountain for the front position again. After a battle on the bikes held a narrow 100 yard distance, Middaugh pulled away for the win

and new blood winners under the watchful eyes of his father and family. “This is one of my favorite winter events,” smiled Middaugh with his boys Sullivan and Porter, who are competitive in snowshoe races. Middaugh’s family has toured the area the last few days. Smith had represented the nation in the Winter World Championships in Italy last year, in which he placed second in Ski Mountaineering. “By doing this event I make myself stronger and I’m ready for summer training,” he said. Smith’s involvement in world events conflicted with the dates of the Quad. “I knew from the start I had my work cut out for me, these guys are incredible world class athletes,” explained Macy. “It’s not all about

prize money. You also come for fun and experience. It’s a great thing to do.” Less than an hour behind the world-class males was a duo of nationally ranked female athletes. Sara Tarkington, the number two ranked XTERRA triathlon athlete in the nation, held the lead the majority of the race after passing Amber Rydholm on the bike up. The pair was neck and neck until the hardest portion of the race, the snowshoe to the peak. “I feel like I’m a competent skate skier,” explained Tarkington. “This is nothing like skate skiing. I want to come back and do it a little faster. This has been a fun weekend.” Amber has attended the race for CONTINUED ON PAGE 4


Sara Tarkington completes the 2011 Quadrathlon.


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nearly a decade and finally talked Sara into coming along to experience the friendliest challenge in the world. “I’ve known about the race since college,” explained Tarkington. “This is by far the most organized race I’ve ever been a part of and I’ve done a lot of races in a lot of places. There are so many tremendous volunteers here at every transition shoving water in my

face if I needed it.” Indeed the 400 volunteers deserve much of the credit for the continued success of the 28th annual event. “The volunteers here are better than anything else I’ve seen anywhere in the world,” explained Macy. “Just the sheer numbers, enthusiasm, guys at the top and any transition along the way. And the whole towns atmosphere is really cool to be apart of.”

Welcome to the Mt Taylor Quad 2011

Randy Hoffman Project Manager

523 W. Santa Fe Ave.

ial erc m Com



ntia l

Phone 505-287-2631


Overall Males Name 1. Josiah Middaugh, 2. Brian Smith 3. Travis Macy

Winners Hometown Vail, CO Gunnison, CO Evergreen, CO

Overall Female Winners 1. Sara Tarkington Boulder, CO 2. Amber Rydholm Boulder, CO 3. Tamsen Schurman El Prado, NM

4:34:52 4:41:58 4:55:02

Men’s Pair winner Southwest Dental


Women’s Pair winner What is Blood?


Mixed Pair winner Durango Mountain Yogis


Male Teams winner The Goatheads


Female Teams winner Used to be Fast


Youngest winner in age group Prokop Havrda, 17 Czech 5:39:28 Oldest winner in age group Tom Masterson, 66 CO

8am-5pm Sat 10am-2pm License #85819

Welcome Athletes of the 2011 Winter Quad


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Time 3:33:28 3:35:15 3:42:16


‘Ultimate Challenge’ welcomes Grandfather Weber By Ron Gonzales Beacon Correspondent GRANTS – At nearly 68 years of age, Klaus Weber models his life after a favorite saying: “training is a commandment.” To those who know Weber, and know that he helped design the Mount Taylor Quadrathlon course many years ago, it wouldn’t come as a surprise that the former University of New Mexico


Weber gives a thumbs up.

Nordic skiing coach and current teacher/coach at Bosque Preparatory School still trains every day – for at least two hours. But after countless miles backpacking, running and hiking, countless hours of recovery time and preparation for big time events like next month’s North Routt Coureur des Bois in Steamboat Springs, Colo. – a 90 kilometer cross country ski

race – Weber still remembers fondly the formative years of the Quad. In fact, to this day, Weber still marvels that the event continues to gain strength after nearly three decades of existence. “I absolutely did not imagine that, but with an asterisk,” Weber said in a Beacon interview. “People like the Caplans (Michael and Ellen) were such inviting people and so sincere. I don’t want to say they were desperate, but they needed something for Grants after the let up in the mining industry.” And so the Quadrathlon was born, and in the beginning Weber said that while conditions of the course and the proximity of Mount Taylor to Grants were initial selling points. He said that without good athletes, the event never would have gotten off the ground. To that end, though he finished ninth overall as a spry 40-year old, he brought with him many of the ski athletes he was coaching at UNM, making his finish acceptable. “The main thing is to get athletes to buy into an event like that to make it a success,” Weber said. “Is there a pool of athletes you can pull from? That becomes your major question. When you choose a good group, they become a

1700 Juniper (Behind Love!s) Milan, NM 87020 M-F 8:30 am – 5 pm Sat. 9 am – 1 pm


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Weber is presented his Nambé trophy.

core of people that can recruit others.” The other thing that helped in the early going, Weber said, was that the community of Grants was willing to accept the Quad as more than just an event for the athletes competing. “We didn’t want it just to be that physical thing,” he said. “We wanted to convince people that this could be a major event for the town. So at one time we had carnival rides and stuff and we changed the date from late March. My son, who is going on 24 now, he raced with some other kids and it was a really fun thing for him.” Slowly but surely however, the Quad has evolved into a world class athletic event, an assertion Weber wholeheartedly agrees with. But what makes it different or more special than the other Quadrathlon courses across the

nation? Weber said the answer is simple. “I’ve been around and I would have to say it is the toughest there is,” Weber said, “because of the extreme climb from the first through fourth stages. There’s no let up. In my younger years it wasn’t a problem, but now the hills get steeper and steeper.” “I marvel at the elite athletes that win or come in second, and those elite athletes (the Quad) attracts are a symbol of how difficult, how extreme it really is.” These days, though Weber competes every year in the Quad as part of his trio of major events (the Chama Chile Ski Classic in January being the third) he still finds plenty of time to relax. Well, sort of anyway. His version of “relaxing” doesn’t quite sound like the typical American way; then again Weber is not your typical man.

Supporting the Quad Athletes

1703 Cordova Ct., Grants, NM 87020 Equal Housing Opportunity 6

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Cibola County resident Bobby Martinez, a longtime resident of Cibola County, New Mexico, was the highest placing solo local racer for 2011. BEACON / TESHIMA

1203 E. Santa Fe Ave. Grants, NM 87020

(505) 287-4314 (office) (505) 287-2845 (home) (505) 285-6415 (fax)

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Overall second place male winner Brian Smith. BEACON / TESHIMA

Overall second place female winner Amber Rydholm.


Keenan Sanchu, grins as he prepares to head out on skiis for the ski portion of the race. 8

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Synchronized breathing keeps Josiah Middaugh and Brian Smith close as they make their way to the ski transition.



Overall third place female winner Tamsen Schurman.


Overall third place male winner Travis Macy.

A runner keeps a smile through the mud near the run/ski transition.




Randy Mattila of Grants check his poles at he is about the begin the cross country ski leg of his journey. Mattila!s pair team (Southwest Dental) won. QUAD 2011


Gilbert finally takes homes a trophy By Aubrey Ashbaugh Beacon Correspondent



Paul Gilbert kisses his Quadrathlon prize - a first.

fter 26 years of competing in the Mount Taylor Quadratholon, Paul Gilbert finally snagged himself a trophy, placing third in his age group. “It was unreal,” were all the words he had to explain the winning experience. Paul Gilbert, 55, is a National Park Service employee and has worked at six different national parks over his career. He currently resides and works in Mesa Verde National Park located outside Cortez, Colo. He began in mainte-

nance years ago and has slowly worked his way up and around on several mountains. Finally, this real life mountain man has conquered another summit. Gilbert, in recent years, has competed in a triathlon that takes place in Monticello, Utah. He’s done a number of marathons and duathalons, but explained that he hasn’t competed in anything else quite like the Grants Quad. Gilbert enjoys the atmosphere of the people who compete. “I see the same people every year,” he said, “ All great athletes.” After 26 years of competing with no win, one has to wonder

825 W. Santa Fe Ave. Phone: (505) 287-4003 Grants, NM 87020 Fax: (505) 287-4101 Mon. - Sat. 9 -4 Closed Sunday

Children under 6 years FREE Seniors $2 Adults $3


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Uranium Mining Museum

“I’ve never, in 26 years, experienced winds like that.” Paul Gilbert, real-life mountain man what changed. “I just prepared better,” said Gilbert. He took on a strenuous workout routine to help prep himself for the event. Gilbert started with long hour and half runs on the weekend and a small biking session after. This continued on to a running and biking schedule after work. Gilbert managed to squeeze in a little ski training, but didn’t get much practice beforehand for the snow events. Fortunately for Gilbert, skiing wasn’t the hardest part of this winning race. The gusting winds that picked up around the biking event were the worst part of the race for Gilbert. “The downhill bike was the hardest. I’ve never, in 26 years, experienced winds like

that. I was in my 20th gear by the prison. I just put my head down and kept pushing forward.” This was Gilbert’s best time in the race since 2007. “When I finished, I didn’t even think I had placed, but it didn’t matter if I had or not. I would keep doing this anyway. Everyone kept telling me I was a winner, and I would say we’re all winners. We all had a goal,” exclaimed Gilbert. This third place winner plans on returning next year to compete. “After this many years of competing, I can’t imagine not coming back. God willing, I’m lucky that I’m able to finish,” joked Gilbert. Hopefully the 27th year will bring Gilbert another trophy to take home.


Klaus Weber, right, and Gilbert share a laugh together at the Saturday awards banquet.

Athletes of the 2011 Winter Quad

Best of Luck !

New Equipment Now Available!


Supports the Winter Quad 2011 Open 7 am - 9 pm – Mon. - Sun.

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Volunteers make race happen By Franklin Romero Beacon Correspondent How would you bike, run, ski and snowshoe 42 miles up and down Mount Taylor in the 28th Annual Quadrathalon without any help? The "Quad" as it is known locally, would be an improbable feat without the help of some very unique individuals, the volunteers. These are not your typical volunteers who volunteer a few hours at a local community or civic functions. Volunteering at the Quad takes strong willed people who are not afraid of long, cold hours, high blood pressure and have the capability to function in the elements. Volunteering not only makes the volunteers feel accomplished it also makes them feel part of a "team" as they are actually helping the athletes in crucial tasks, such as helping them change at the

transition points after bringing them their equipment or providing much needed food and water. The volunteers also, at times, take on the role of a coach or mentor as they encourage and listen to racers. Course conditions, their race time, how they feel and even their gripes are frequent topics at race interchange points. Fifth year volunteer, Clarissa O'keefe stated, "Helping that person out is satisfying. They are grateful that you are helping them." When asked about trying moments as a volunteer, she said, "When I was younger I took it personal when they were stern with me. Now I know they just wanted to get up and go." The satisfaction of volunteering takes on many forms. "Meeting as many people from around world that come and race," said Cayden Wilson, a junior at Grants

High School, was his reason for volunteering. Wilson helped at the Quad headquarters by registering the time that racers completed the race. When asked if he would like to do the race someday, Wilson said, "No, it's too much." Up on the mountain the volunteering is led by seasoned organizations such as the Grants Rodeo Association. They are headquartered right in the middle of the running leg of the race, which is one of the more desolate areas of the race. They provide much needed water, snacks and friendly voices in the wilderness to weary racers. Dominic Moleres is part of the Rodeo Association and is a fifth year veteran of the quad who has spent his last three years as transportation coordinator for the Quad. He is in charge of lining up volunteers and making sure that volun-

Supporting The 2011 Quad


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teers, equipment and supplies make it to the needed places. "I have four trucks and five drivers to get everything up and down today, " said Moleres as his trademark buffalo hat blew about in the spring wind. When asked about what makes it satisfying for him he said, "This is a big event for our community. It's gratifying seeing all the turnout of all the people coming to our community." Another group who volunteered are the Boy Scouts of America, who spent the night watching over the equipment and pitched in throughout the day. Scoutmaster Ray Clemens, of troop 26 from Grants, said of the overnight experience, "It's a great experience to be out here in the wind and snow." A racer summed it up for the volunteers when he shouted, "Thank you volunteers" at the run/ski interchange at one of the busiest times at the interchange. Whether they spent the night, loaded and unloaded equipment, drove a truck or provided a comforting voice the Quad would not have been a success if it were not for those brave and hard working volunteers.


Volunteer transportation coordinator, Dominic "Buffalo" Moleres, center, takes a minute to pose with two volunteers from Albuquerque as they finish loading equipment at the Runski interchange. The 28th annual quadrathlon was held this past Saturday, February 19, on Mount Taylor.

Welcoming the athletes of the 2011 Winter Quad Wishing all of the competitors the very best of luck!

200 W. Santa Fe Ave.

823 Roosevelt Ave. QUAD 2011


Mount Taylor Quadrathlon: Run, By Jenn Fields Courtesy of the Colorado Daily GRANTS - Although she's accustomed to the rigors of Xterra races, Sara Tarkington said after the Mount Taylor Quadrathlon: "I've never been so sore." This was the first year the Boulder resident competed in the four-sport race in northern New Mexico. "It really is an adventure up the mountain and an adventure down," Tarkington said. Here's what Tarkington had to say about the race - which she won the women's solo division in four hours, 34 minutes and 52 seconds:


Sara Tarkington during race.


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Q: How does the Quadrathlon rank among other races you've done as a sufferfest? A: It was time-wise the longest race I've done in my life. Xterras are usually three hours, three-fifteen at the most.

It is February, I'm not in peak shape. Because it's winter, I'm not riding outside that much or even running outside. The time of the year and the nature of the events made it a new challenge. Q: You weren't in peak shape, but you still won. A: I'm in decent shape, but it's still the beginning of the year. Q: I hear it was windy. Are you used to that from training here? A: It was very windy. In Boulder, it's to be expected at this time of the year. I was used to the wind, however it doesn't make it any easier being used to it. Luckily it was beautiful, sunshiny skies. Q: Is there a mental factor with the wind? A: Definitely on the bike down, it was a crosswind... it's hard to fight against

bike, ski, snowshoe... and turn 30

that, knowing you're almost done.

Q: Why did you do the Quad? A: I've known about this race for many years and always thought, oh, that would be something different to try. And two of my friends, Amber and Eric Rydholm (of Boulder)... encouraged me to try and were mentors for me. So with their encouragement, I went ahead and tried it. And they're four activities that I enjoy and do over the winter -- seemed like a good fit. Q: Amber came in second, just seven minutes behind you. Were you racing together most of the time? A: She was a few seconds ahead of me on the bike up, but I overtook her on the run. We were close until the snowshoe, and I got some time on her during the snowshoe.

Q: What did you do to train for it? A: I didn't do anything differently, per se, except I've been doing a lot of snowshoe races. I've been doing the Nighthawks snowshoe races up at Eldora.

Q: What was the toughest moment in the race for you? A: The most difficult was absolutely the ski down. I opted to use skate skis because it's the only kind of skis I own I could use for this race. They were great on the way up, but it was scary on the way down, it was sloppy... I fell a few times, I stopped a few times to let my legs recover from all of the snowplowing action. Q: Is the cross-country ski portion of this race pretty steep? A: Half of the people use a skate ski, the other half use alpine touring, moun-

taineering, and that would have been a very wise choice for the descent this time. Q: Once you got back to the run, did you motor? A: I did. It's mostly downhill, but there are a few little uphills you don't notice on the way up. But I've never been so happy to see my bike and get on it after the run. Once you were tired of one activity, you were done, so it was really fun in that manner. Q: How did you celebrate after the win? A: We didn't really celebrate, we were all so tired. We went to dinner and spent all of the next day driving back. It was my 30th birthday Friday... We went out for sushi and ice cream last night (Sunday). It sort of coincided, and I thought, that's not really how I want to celebrate my 30th birthday, but I'm so glad I did it.

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2011 Mt. Taylor Winter Quadrathlon  

Coverage of 2011 Mt. Taylor Winter Quadrathlon.

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