Joseph Pereira, the first Mangalorean SOLO cyclist to conquer the Deccan Cliffhanger, the Ultra Cycling Race in 33h45!
Billed as one of the grueling races on the Ultra Cycling calendar, Deccan Cliffhanger still challenges the best cyclists from all over India. Departing from the picturesque town of Pune, this 643 km run is an adventurous and difficult run, as the route passes through human ascents from Khandala Ghat on the NH48, 21 km vertical ascent to the top of Panchagani, followed from Pasarni Ghat and the hilly terrain from Satara to Belgaum, where the scorching heat and headwinds make pedaling almost impossible. Taking the forays from Belgaum to Goa, the road passes through dense forest, ascends to Chorla Ghat and then slowly descends to sea level at Ponda culminating at the beach near Bogmalo in South Goa.
After seeing many WERC teams compete in previous Deccan Cliffhanger race additions, and fresh from her recent success in Super Randonneure, Joseph Pereira during one of his occasional interactions with team members, showed interest in participate in this year’s edition of Deccan Suspense. The WERC team guided Joseph monsieur to speak to the WERC team mentor and coach, Gratian Govias, for comments and consultations. Coach Gratian, who is an outstanding national level coach, having guided several champion cyclists to various podiums, including WERC riders, agreed to help Joseph Sir and agreed to be part of the trip. Although the trainer would have liked a preparation of at least 3 months, it was a kind of intensive 2 week course where Joseph monsieur was advised to simulate several 100, 200, 300 km outings at different times. day and night and land. At the rear, the search for crew members was launched. Due to so many previous commitments, many members were unable to join. Since having a good crew for the event is very crucial as it can make or break the race of the riders, the always energetic Ashok, took the lead and made sure that the best crew from WERC be formed to accompany Joseph. sir for the race. Shivananda and Nithin joined with Ashok in supporting Joseph Sir in his efforts. During the training of Joseph Sir, in the back, Ashok and his team were busy organizing the emergency car, the bike, the spare parts, the hotel accommodation, the travel plan, the formalities of recording, route planning, food and nutrition plan, including capturing the event as it happened.
5 days before the event, training volumes were reduced and Joseph monsieur’s diet and sleep conditioning was taken care of. The coach traveled all the way from Chennai to Mangalore to join the team and the group of runners, coaches and crew left for Pune on the 17th afternoon. The registration formalities were completed on site on the 18th and Joseph monsieur had to take a last good nap a day before the day of the race, while others rushed to fill out all the last minute documentation, the arrangements. , race formalities, etc.
On race day, November 20, 2021, Joseph monsieur was one of the first runners to be reported and the race started at 5:30 am. This year the 50 and over category saw 12 runners including a woman, which in itself sets a new record for the event.
Pedaling his way, Joseph monsieur takes one step at a time, with all his composure and intrepid techniques. While many were running, Joseph monsieur followed the coach’s advice that the race would not start until the 350+ km mark !!
With the excellent support of the crew, be it food, drink or any kind of support in terms of massage, rest time etc. behind those runners who had passed him earlier. In the evening, Brijesh, the still energetic member of the WERC team joined the backup team and reduced the pressure by taking on the backup task and the burden of driving, giving the tired crew much relief. necessary.
Joseph Pereira and his team completed this adventurous race in 33:45, reaching the finish line in Goa around 2:30 p.m. to the applause of the organizers, participants and all their crew and the WERC team.
Congratulations to Joseph sir and the team of the WERC team consisting of Ashok, Shiva, Nithin and Brijesh led forward by coach Gratian. By finishing the Deccan Cliffhanger race, our runner Joseph Pereira became the first Mangalorean to complete the SOLO race and also qualified for the Race Across America (RAAM), an unrivaled foot for his age.