Dirty Dozen is coming up…

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Nov 15 2006 at 1:39pm #

i thought about it, but knowing you died after 6, erok, I know am definitely NOT WORTHY. I aspire to try. Check out the history and gearing discussion on


In 1983, Dan & Tom Chew and Bob Gottlieb wanted to showcase Pittsburgh’s
steepest and toughest hills in one ride, never getting more than 10 kilometers
away from the center of the city. So on Saturday December 17, 1983, the
first Dirty Dozen ride was held in 27 degrees F with snow flurries. Among the
5 starters were Oscar Rattenberg and Ron Reider, but only Dan, Tom, and Bob
finished. Dan & Tom were deemed the two strongmen of the ride. The 5 place
points system was first used in 1988 when 13 starters showed up. When Tom
Chew moved away from Pittsburgh in 1985, Dan Chew took over as the ride
organizer. Back in the early years (the 80’s) a macho attitude prevented any rider
from using gears lower than a 42×24. In recent years, the ride has gotten easier
due to lower gearing and several of the hills being paved (asphalted) which used
to be rough cobblestone or wavy blacktop killing what little momentum the rider
had. The highest low gear ever used by a Dirty Dozen winner was a 42×23 by
Dan Chew in 1988. The highest low gear used by a Dirty Dozen finisher was a
42×21 by Justin Walker, Mark Colenbrander, and Phil Rhodes. In recent years,
riders have used a 39×32 gear which makes the ride much less taxing on the rider’s
upper body.

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