Now strictly a bike race, the 10.8-mile Mount Diablo Challenge started
out with a much more whimsical premise: Athletes had the choice to ride
this course or run a heartbreakingly steep 5.5-mile route straight up
the 3,849-foot mountain. In 2000, only four runners and an equal number
of bike riders finished, with the first-place bike rider edging out the
first-place runner by only a minute or two. Last year, 888 riders made
it to the top of the Devil's mountain, including an 80-year-old (one of
the four men and two women in the 70-99 age class), a 9-year-old,
twelve riders on six tandems, and three intrepid fellows on unicycles.
Last year's winning time was 43:33; if you want to try beating the
Devil's course this year, look for the tires and brimstone on Sunday,
October 4. Registration is $50.