The Dirty Kanza is the grandaddy of gravel events. A solo, self-supported, non-stop, 200-mile-long bicycling endurance challenge on the gravel and dirt roads of the Flint Hills region in east-central Kansas. Put simply, it is the gravel event against which all others are compared.
Every June, some 2,000 riders line up on the start line in Emporia to ride 200 miles in the blazing Kansas sunshine. You’d think that once you’ve done it once, that would be it. But many riders keep coming back, year after year. Two such riders are Paul Errington and David Markman who on 2nd June, will both be setting off from outside the historic Granada Theater, in downtown Emporia for the fourth time!
ADVNTR catch up with these two #DK200 veterans to take a look at how they setup their bikes for 200 miles of gravel grinding.
An Englishman in… Kansas
To many, he’s the smiling face who hands you a beer at the end of the Dirty Reiver. But Paul Errington doesn’t just spend his time scrawling routes on OS maps of Keilder Forest, he’s competed in pretty much every gravel event around the globe.
Paul is riding a Salsa Cycles Warbird Carbon, a third generation model rather than the prototype 4th generation announced by Salsa on the 1st June. Shimano’s trusty mechanical Ultegra groupset reliably deals with all the shifting and stopping.
Fresh from Cantu Wheels, the new Rova 700c carbon gravel wheelset shod with Panaracer Gravel King SK 43c rubber will keep Paul rolling in the Flint Hills.
Brooks Saddles trusty Cambium with carbon rails to provide comfort, Wahoo ELEMNT to guide the way and Lezyne lights to deal with the dark.
Small Town Minnesota Man
David Markman is an enthusiastic cyclist, paddler, climber, and high liner. Always looking for the thrill of a challenge, he has paddled through the Arctic Circle and biked across the Rockies.
Considering its race pedigree at the Dirty Kanza over the years by many riders, it is no surprise to find that David is also using a Salsa Warbird for his 4th strike at the race. This time, a 2015 model fitted with Lauf Grit forks.
David has opted to go electronic with Shimano di2 and no less than 7 shifters (in the drops, on the flats, on the aero bars and the normal shifter). Quarq’s Elsa power meter crank will take care of putting the power through the ENVE M60 laced to a Hope Pro 4 hub.
A firm favourite with gravel riders, Specialized Trigger Pro 700×38 rubber tops off the wheel setup. “I ran Trigger Pros with Stans Sealant in my first year and it worked flawlessly. So every year after that I run the same… Race day should not be the time you decide to test new products.”
Up front David is using an SP Dyno hub to power a Garmin 1000 GPS and Sine Wave Dyno light. “I don’t plan on beating the sun this year” quipped David.
Last modified: 5th June 2018