2014 East Coast Messenger Stage Race
Words and photos by Chris Lee
It was a warm, sunny day in Washington, DC. Observe the scene at the most southern tip of Hains Point park and you’ll start to see a group of rag tag racers gather near an enormous matte black camper truck. As the racers arrive, they each greet each other with warm hand shakes or even the occasional hug. This is where this year’s East Coast Messenger Stage Race would begin…
New York City’s Austin Horse threw his third annual ECMSR on September 20th. This stage race began and ended with a time trial and spanned 550 miles from Washington DC to Boston, Mass.
Working class athletes from all over the country gathered to race this year. No prize money and no trophies. Just bragging rights and the satisfaction of racing through the biggest cities in the east coast. Also, don’t let the name fool you. The reason why its called the “messenger” stage race is because each racer/team has to route themselves from city to city. In order to keep routes off of major interstates and to keep a safer race course, each racer was to visit an intermediate checkpoint roughly half way between the start and end of the day’s stage.
Every year every athlete puts it all on the road, and this year was no exception. This year’s GC and stage victors were decided not only by racing prowess and fitness but also with routing skills. The GC podium finished with two dark horse contenders and an international visitor. Chris Devine, a courier from Boston, took first. Adam Schwarcz, a bicycle mechanic from Oakland, took second. And Kai Edel, a courier from Germany, rounded out the podium with third. Team Lyfted from Boston took the team GC in the end.