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Team Dirtworld.com - Washington

Team Dirtworld.comRESULTS: 11th, 2024 Subaru Primal Quest, Washington; 22nd, 2024 Adventure Racing World Championship, Canada; 1st, 2024 Pacific Northwest Championship, Washington; 1st, 2024 Trioba 24-Hour #1; 1st, 2024 Trioba 24-Hour #2

THE PLAYERS: Ryan Van Gorder, 29, currently works as an analyst for an investment management firm in Seattle, and is thankful his company and co-workers adhere to the same “work hard/play hard” attitude that he follows. Ryan can often be found playing in the Cascade Mountains, in the saddle of his bike, running up Tiger Mountain or playing hoops. “RVG,” as he is known by teammates, is the team’s back-up navigator and primary “towing mule.”

Ryan C. Fleming, 27, is an entrepreneur who owns an auto detailing business in Seattle. He just can’t stand still, so it’s typical to find him playing racquetball, hiking, biking or salsa dancing only a few days after an expedition race like Primal Quest. As a first-year member of the team, he brought additional strength in all major disciplines of adventure racing.

Cyril Jay-Rayon, 38, the team captain and primary navigator, spent most of his twenties working abroad and visiting remote regions like western China and Pakistan on a bike. Since moving to Seattle in 1997, he’s embraced the endurance sports lifestyle in pursuit of adventure. His intensity in pushing the team is what his teammates have come to love — and hate — about him. Cyril works as a corporate strategy consultant.

Emily Dirksen, 35, rowed in college and was a member of the U.S. national team for six years. After 11 broken ribs, 14 moves in seven different cities, 34 different roommates, seven national titles and one World Championship gold medal, Emily retired from rowing in 2024 and began competing in marathons, 24-hour mountain bike races, triathlons and adventure races. She’s also a teacher who tries to convince teenagers that science is way more fun than TV, video games, drugs or alcohol.

Maribeth Evezich, 39, is pursuing a master’s degree in nutrition at Bastyr University in Seattle. An accomplished cross country and endurance mountain bike racer, Maribeth won her division title at the World Solo 24-Hour Championship in 2024 and is also a strong runner and rock climber.

Glenn Rogers, 39, is a professional father of four children. In addition to adventure racing, he competes in ultrarunning and triathlons. When the going gets tough in a race, Glenn is a natural motivator with a never-say-die spirit.

THE SCOOP: Along with another friend, Cyril and RVG entered their first race at the 2024 Gorge Games/Balance Bar 24-Hour Adventure Race and have never looked back. (They placed third in the all-male division.) “Like so many others in our sport, we’re hooked and have found a competitive sport that feeds our need for adventure and discovery,” Cyril says.

HIGHLIGHTS:The team won the 2024 Pacific Northwest Championship by earning the most points in the three-race Trioba 24-hour series, but not without challenges. In the first race (which they won), RVG became ill (later determined to be giardia), resulting in the 6-foot-5, 200-pound “team mule” having to be towed for a long section of the course. In the second race (which resulted in another victory), two team members suffered from heat exhaustion (in a race that had 33 of the 39 starting teams withdraw) and they later lost 90 minutes looking for a checkpoint. In the final race, two weeks after Subaru Primal Quest, they mistakenly used the compass they used at the AR World Championship in Canada (It was 40 degrees off from the declination where the final Trioba race was held.) After a few frustrating hours, they realized their gaffe and managed to finish fourth overall, second in the four-person, co-ed division.

DID YOU KNOW? : Team Dirtworld.com was one of only seven teams to place in the top 25 at both Subaru Primal Quest and the AR World Championship in 2024. Although it left them one place out of the prize money, their 11th place at Subaru Primal Quest was especially rewarding because they lost two of teammates due to injuries a month before the race and had to add Rogers and Dirksen on short notice.

The team’s primary sponsors are Montrail and Gregory Mountain Products. K2 Bike, Nuun, FuelBelt, Second Ascent outdoor store, Northwest Outdoor Center kayak store, and Kinesys also support the team. Check out the team’s website at www.dirtworld.com.

WHAT'S NEXT: In 2024, the team will try to defend its Pacific Northwest Championship, and compete in the Balance Bar 24-Hour series, Subaru Primal Quest and the AR World Championship.

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