JACKSON, Wyo. — Dubbed the “hardest race you will ever love,” the 2020 Rendezvous Mountain Hillclimb was slightly altered but fully back.
In a race that is more than just climbing, racers needed a full bag of tricks including endurance, speed, downhill agility and determination to push to the top on the final grueling ascent.
The overall men’s winner was 35-year-old Seth DeMoor from Denver, Colorado who finished with a time of 1:04:35. DeMoor was last year’s Rendezvous Hillclimb winner as well. He reached the top of Tensleep Bowl at a blistering fast time of 48 minutes. The one-hour mark may have fallen this year if the course had not changed.
For the ladies, reigning champion Samantha Diaz, 28, battled with Nicole Murray up the Wildflower Trail and the Cirque. In the flats and downhill portion Diaz took the lead and pushed through the final uphill to finish with a division-topping 1:22:44.
“The course was really fun with some downhill but the hardest part of the race was the last climb back up to Rendezvous Lodge,” Diaz remarked at the finish line.
Owen Burnett was the fastest male in the under 20 division. Andie Cornish, earned top spot for the ladies under 20.
The route was modified to account for the Aerial Tram not running because of scheduled maintenance and COVID concerns. The race started at the base of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, up the Wildflower Trail to the Rendezvous Lodge, continuing onto the Cirque Trail and then utilizing the mountain road to circle back to the Rendezvous Lodge.
The nonprofit annual race is run in honor of longtime JHMR aerial tram mechanic Chris Onufer (Captain “X”), who was killed in an avalanche in 2012. Jackson Hole Mountain Resort donates 100% of the proceeds to the trails division of Friends of Pathways, all in the name of Onufer.
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