This year Salsa is sending the Dirty 11.5 to participate in 2016’s Dirty Kanza 200. David Markman is Dirty No. 7.
This year Salsa is sending the Dirty 11.5 to participate in 2016's Dirty Kanza 200. David Markman is Dirty No. 7.
Salsa Cycles: What is your goal at this year’s DK200?
David Markman: This will be my second year riding in DK, and the obvious goal would be to do better than I did last year (19:53). But more than simply beating my time, I am using DK this year to be my final readiness test for the Tour Divide, which starts the following weekend. Mentally and physically, I feel like I will be able to cut at least four hours off of last year's time. I want to finish before the sun sets in 14:43 flat.
SC: What is your biggest fear going into the event?
DM: Weather and road conditions are the variables of DK that can scramble even the best-made plans. I have trained harder and prepared more for this season’s races than ever before, so I feel I am ready for whatever DK throws at me. The addition of a third checkpoint this year will help make this year’s race less stressful.
SC: What have you done to prepare, and how are you combating that fear?
DM: This year I hired a coach to help me train (Lelan Dains) and prepare for an exciting year of endurance gravel riding. DK will be the fifth of 14 century-plus rides planned this year, in addition to the Tour Divide. Consistent and proper training has had obvious improvements in the way I ride and prepare for a race.
SC: What are you most looking forward to at this year’s Dirty Kanza event?
DM: To see all of the great riders I have met and spoken to all year. The Dirty Kanza 200 for me is like a school reunion, but with people who I actually want to see again. The gravel riding community is made up of so many awesome people, some I only get to see once a year. DK brings so many really great riders together for a really great ride and time.