DORBA Fall Series – Johnson Branch

The fourth race of the DORBA Fall Series has proven to be the most challenging race thus far. The race course started directly with the “red loop,” which is quite rocky with numerous rock gardens, technical climbs, and some short, steep drops. After enduring 2 miles of the “red loop,” the course continued onto a jeep road and curved through trees up and down wooded hillsides which created plenty of elevation change. Not only did Mike D’Aurelio, Phil Hollings, and Brandon Schrader survive two laps of this brutal course, they also made the podium. Shout out to Brandon for completing this on his single speed. In addition to those members, Keith McDonald, Brittany Smith, and Melissa Dalton, also made the podium.


Brandon receiving 2nd place in Cat 2 SS. That 14-year-old was fast!

After hitting the trail, racers got to enjoy the carnival festivities hosted by the Big Pigs. I must say it was quite entertaining seeing some of our fellow riders being dunked into a tub of water! Thank you again for putting on such a great event!

James and Phil getting ready to hit the trail!












Here are the team’s overall results and photos:

Cat 1

Cat 2

  • Brandon Schrader, 2nd, SS
  • Phil Hollings, 2nd, Men 60 +
  • James Henson, DNF (technical)

Cat 3

  • Chris Torrez, 7th, Men 30 – 39
  • Keith McDonald, 2nd, Men 40 – 49
  • Brittany Smith, 2nd, Women 19 – 29
  • Melissa Dalton, 1st, Women 40 +

BWR at Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day

The first Saturday of October every year is the official Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day (TKMBD), as decreed by the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA).  This event is celebrated around the world including: Italy, Australia, South Africa, Canada, Malaysia, and Mexico. TKMBD celebrates the joy of riding in the dirt.

Here in North Texas, three trails celebrated TKMBD on Saturday, October 4, 2014.  Bearded Women Racing (BWR) volunteered at two of those events: Horseshoe (Grapevine, TX), and the NW Community Trail (Frisco, TX).
Horseshoe jointly conducted a DORBA ( Beginner’s Clinic on Saturday, and they drew a total of 44 adults and 10 kids to the event.  Eight BWR members were on-hand to assist with set-up, the clinic, leading/sweeping rides, encouraging the kids, and grilling up some grub to wrap up the day’s festivities.

In Frisco, seven BWR members came out to help check fit on the kids’ bikes and helmets, change flats, lead/sweep rides and cheer the kids on.  Frisco drew 15 smiling, happy kids to their event and many laps around the trail were taken by all.

BWR is not just about racing, we also give back to the community through events like this.  In addition, team members have participated in Cub Scout bike safety rodeos, Children’s Red Balloon Ride, Ride 2 Recovery, Carry the Load, and other fundraising and community service events.

Biketoberfest at RCP

Biketoberfest, our Team’s theme for the DORBA Fall Series at Rowlett Creek Preserve, was a huge success! Bearded Women Racing went above and beyond, setting up a show down with Big Pig at Johnson Branch next week. Many of our team members came dressed in their best German attire, especially Benjamin Leach who looked gorgeous as Hilda, Hans’ froulien from Hamburg. Hans and Mando stepped it up a notch and raced in their lederhosens. Our members also donated food, swag, and time to make this event fun for all.

Brittany Smith (3rd) and Katie Shaw (2nd) receiving their awards!

Between bike tossing, arm wrestling, and eating delicious bratwursts, many of the BWR members raced as well. About half of Rowlett Creek Preserve passes through trees with some areas that are tight and twisty.  The rest is out in the open with some fast, straight field sections.  Most of the trail is flat with only a few relatively short climbs, which made for a very quick race! Some of our members who made the podium in their categories include: Keith McDonald, Phil Hollings, James Henson, Brandon Schrader, Mike D’Aurelio, Melissa Dalton, and Brittany Smith.



Brandon Schrader received 2nd in Cat. 2 SS.








Here are the team’s overall results and photos:

Cat 1

  • Mike D’Aurelio, 2nd, Men 60 +

Cat 2

  • Brandon Schrader, 2nd, SS
  • Will Jiron, 9th, SS
  • Jonathan Braddick, 15th, SS
  • Corey Fawcett, 8th, Men 35 – 39
  • Phil Hollings, 1st, Men 60 +
  • James Henson, 2nd, Men 60 +

Cat 3

  • Moreece Griffin, 7th, Men 30 – 39
  • Armando Zermeno, 9th, Men 30 – 39
  • Keith McDonald, 1st, Men 40 – 49
  • Daniel Smith, 5th, Men 30 – 39
  • Chris Torrez, 18th, Men 30 – 39
  • David Foster, 8th, Clydesdale
  • Logan Davis, 10th, Clydesdale
  • Katie Shaw, 2nd, Women 19 – 29
  • Brittany Smith, 3rd, Women 19 – 29
  • Melissa Dalton, 1st, Women 40 +

Biketoberfest at the RCP-DORBA Fall Series Race, October 5th!

logo design by Dave Nelke


Ygerman-man-20755574a, this is Hans from ze Motha’ land ya!  I’ve journe’d all ze vay from my home of Hamburg to invite you to ze Bearded Vemon Vacing’s Biktoberfest ya!  It’s a Nagelschlagen guaranteed to be ze best time you’ll have on a mountain bike!

What is zis mountain bike, ya?  Ve have real mountains back in Duetschland!  Ver are ze mountains in Texas, ya?

No matter!  Vear your most favorite Duetsch costume to vin a prize, or try to beat me at ze arm wrestling or bike throwing contests, and other bike games, ya!

I’ll also be opening my personal Beirgarten with mama’s traditional brats and ze cold root beer, free for everyone to enjoy.  *First come, first serve.  Limited supply. Donations accepted.

Also, to check out my swag bag full of excellent Bearded Vemon Vacing merch, and listen to ze excellent sounds of ze Polka and Deutsch rock and roll! Can’t wait to meet all of you there!

Auf Wiedersehen!

Here are ze details:

XC Mountain Bike Race

DORBA’s Fall Series will take place on October 5, 2014 from 8:30 am – 3:00 pm at Rowlett Creek Preserve in Garland, TX


Listen to Hans and visit his Biktoberfest Biergarten featuring free brats and cold root beers, one per person, first come first serve.  Hang out with fellow racers, take your hand at the arm wrestling or root beer chugging contests, or buy a BWR tee shirt, kozy or water bottle to help support the team!  Prizes from our sponsors and $25 gift certificates from Plano Cycle and Fitness!  Cash at the race or Paypal donations to are generously accepted.

Bike Games

It’s not a race without more competition, and this won’t be USAC regulated!  Hans loves’ to win so try to beat him at the caber bike toss, mini bike obstacle course race, bike limbo, and more!  Festivities get underway once Cat 3 racers have finished the race.

The Red River Riot

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The Red River Riot.

As told by Eric “Lacy” Swarvar, Racing Member, SS

After doing a few Spinistry Gravel rides I thought I knew what to expect. Kevin runs a professionally organized promotion like no other. An entry fee of $30 got me an option of 3 distances of 40,72, or 123 miles, I wisely choose the middle for my cross bike and I. Fellow Beards Mike and Greg were also at the race and after exchanging greetings at Muenster High School, we quickly realized the event was off to a start. We started to the back, which is never my favorite place to start. I began to push to get to the front of the group but only made it to the 2nd peloton. The group was led out by Kevin in his vehicle to begin the day. The pace picked up quickly and I settled in to a 17+mph average. At mile 4 a rider went down in a gravel turn. I did not stop to offer assistance as my level of medical training is not good and he already had 4 fellow riders helping. I rode a little cautious for the next few miles until the scenery drew my attention away from my thoughts on the wreck. From mile 8 to 25 I rode with a few individuals I know, but not working a pace line, we were turning the cranks and chewing the cud. At mile 25 a pace line formed and the speed picked back up. There were about 20 riders pushing through and at mile 30 my loins were releaved to feel pavement. I cranked the speed up for a fast mile hitting a 30.8 MPH average just to have a little fun with the guys on the MTB. It was my impression that the first loop was a 35 mile loop before coming back to Muenster High to check in. I was wrong since it was a keen 40 miles. I averaged a nice 17.3 MPH average, far from the guys in the first group with a 19+ mph average.

Loop two will forever be known as the bastard loop to me. It had a lot more elevation changes then the first but the scenery was equally beautiful. For a while I rode with Chaos(for those of you that have meet him you know him). He was rolling a single speed fixed gravel bike and was smiling the entire time. Halfway into the second loop you could break left to the winery or right to stay on course, Chaos went off to the winery with a, “Yhea Man!” as I pushed to stay on course. Thats when trouble occurred at mile 56. The real climbing began. 400+ feet over 4 miles and the peak of the climb was 160 feet over .7 miles….quads cramped and admittedly I became a hiker instead of a biker for about .3 miles. Once the hill leveled I jumped back on the saddle and started to pedal. I took about a mile to settle back in and feel good. Finishing 72 miles in 4 hours 32 minutes with over 4,100+ feet of climbing on gravel felt good. I consumed 3 bottles of Scratch labs, 1 water bottle, and 4 Scratch rice cakes. Next time I will eat a little more on the ride, I believe thats where the cramping came from.

After most Spinistry events Kevin provides BBQ brisket, beans, salsa, to make your own tacos or sandwiches. He also took pictures out on the course, posted the results in less then 24 hours, and emailed each participant their individual results by Monday. This is an event I will keep on my calendar year after year, and highly encourage everyone to hit up a few of his events.

Results here:

Eric Swarvar, Medium Route, 26 of 90, 4:36:23

Mike D’Aurelio, Medium Route, 71 of 90, 5:39:43

Greg Campbell, Short Route, 20 of 80, 2:35:23

-Eric “Lacy” Swarvar

Katie is one of the newest members of Bearded Women Racing and a recent University of North Texas graduate. She has a passion for riding bikes and helping people. This summer, Katie will have the opportunity to combine both her passions and take on an epic adventure when she journeys across the United States with the Bike & Build program. 

Katie Shaw, Racing Member
Katie Shaw, Racing Member

Tell us who you are, where you come from, and why you’re here.

Greetings! My name is Katie Shaw and I hail from Denton, TX. I’m a recent college grad of the University of North Texas with a degree in English Literature, and I’m here to chat a little bit about my upcoming summer, which I’m super stoked about.

In your own words, can you tell us about the Bike & Build program?

Bike & Build is a non-profit organization that focuses on raising awareness and funds for affordable housing projects in America through cross-country cycling trips. The organization also aims to instill service and leadership in its participants. Beginning in June, I’ll be cycling across the country with 34 other young adults from Portsmouth, NH to Vancouver, Canada. Along the way we’ll be stopping to build homes with Habitat for Humanity and other similar non-profits. Some days we’ll bike and other days we’ll build. Each rider participating is required to raise $4,500 for the trip, which goes to food, fuel for the support van, and to non-profits that are dedicated to ending the affordable housing crisis in America.

 What made you decide to take on this grand adventure?

A few of my friends did this trip last summer, and I was so inspired after hearing the stories of their life-changing summer, so I knew right away that I had to cycle across the US and build houses. They told me stories of all the neat people they met and the connections they made—(WARNING: sappy sentence approaching) the kind of stories that make you tear up because your body is so full of those feel good emotions.

How have you been preparing or training for the long days in the saddle?

I’ve been getting in as many miles as I can on the road. I just got my brand spankin’ new Giant Avail road bike shipped to me about two weeks ago from Bike & Build, so I’ve been familiarizing myself with my steed that will take me across the US this summer. And yoga. Yoga is part of my training to keep me limber.

What can we (readers) do to help this worthy cause?

As I stated earlier in the interview, each participant is responsible for raising $4,500 for the trip. This is where you, the readers, and anyone interested in the affordable housing cause come in. Donations to make this trip possible would be greatly (I mean GREATLY) appreciated and are also 100% tax-deductible. If you’d like to read a little bit more about me or donate to the cause, follow this link: To read more about Bike & Build, check out or visit their Facebook page



Jesse Bernal, Racing Member
written by Jesse Bernal, Racing Member #IRideBikesGood

If you’ve ever ridden or volunteered for a Spinistry event you already know that Kevin Lee (Spinistry’s founder) is notoriously guilty of putting on some of the most grueling cycling events south of the Red River. Texas Chainring Massacre, Red River Riot, Hell on Wheels 100, and Midnight Massacre are just a few of the races in his repertoire; but none come close to the insanity that is the Sansom 66. To the untrained eye, the Sansom 66 looks like any other 60ish mile endurance race, but to the frequenters of this trail this is 66 miles of pure agony. Marion Sansom Park is 11 miles of rocky, loose, technical, and fast descending single track located in Fort Worth, Texas. It is also infamously known for having near the edge, fall off a cliff, super fast, flowy trail. If you’ve never had the chance to ride here, I highly encourage you to make the trip, preferably with someone that knows the trail.

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Earlier this year three of our very own Bearded Women Racing members Randy Davis, Braden Barnett, and I took on the challenge of the Sansom 66. However, being only mere mortals, we only signed up for the 33 miles option, which proved to be more than enough. The day started with cool temperatures and brisk winds that seemed to cut through even the best of windbreakers. As riders dawned their layers of long sleeve shirts and thermals the anxiety started to compound as it does with most race days. A few minutes before the race began, Kevin Lee gathered the racers around for the traditional racer’s meeting in which they gave a moment of silence for the late, great Ray Porter, a Dallas racing legend. In honor of Ray, his #1 race plate was retired from Spinistry events… a genuinely respectable act by Kevin.

Soon the race began with a short start loop that shot the racers straight into the racecourse. The degree of difficulty was quickly realized when racers began to bottleneck on technical sections and climbs that weren’t cleaned by the less experienced riders. Thankfully the field of riders was small and the traffic diminished within a few minutes. At this time, Bearded Women Racing was pretty well spread out. Braden and his Ti Lynskey bike were making great time and were in the lead pack. Randy was also doing well on his scandium/carbon Salsa and was staying competitive in the middle pack. Meanwhile, I was trudging along in the back of the pack on my Niner carbon single speed because of a flat tire late in the first lap. I eventually recovered from this and fixed my puncture, but never really got back into the race because I had lost so much time.

3 laps later our racers slowly started crossing the finish line looking beaten, but elated at the same time. Braden absolutely crushed the race coming in with a time of 3:57:07 which earned him a place of 17/28. Randy also had a strong showing earning a 22/28 placing with a time of 4:28:29. I, despite the mechanical troubles I encountered with two flat tires, earned a 25/28 place with a time of 5:10:50; respectable time for a single speed. Perhaps I would have had better luck if I had registered in the single speed category.

See ya at IDB! JB

Here are the overall results from the Samson 66 in Ft Worth, TX:

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