Falyn Murphy’s first trek up Pikes Peak Highway was an adventure she will likely remember for the rest of her life.
The Cheyenne Mountain Junior High School eighth-grader won the E-Bike Competitive division of The Broadmoor Pikes Peak Cycling Hill Climb on Aug. 7. At 13, she was the youngest competitor in her division.
“I didn’t do much preparation for the race,” Falyn said. “The only time I’ve ever been to the top of Pikes Peak was on the Cog Railway. And that was in third grade on a field trip.”
The race took place on the same 12.42-mile course that automobiles have competed on during the famed Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb since 1916. Riders begin at Mile 7 and work their way to the summit in the timed event. There are 156 turns with a gain in elevation of 4,775 feet.
Falyn, the only youth in the race, zipped up the highway in 1 hour, 4 minutes, 44.73 seconds. She finished a little over two minutes faster than second-place Mark Sandoval.
“I definitely wish I would have gone up in a car before the race so I could study the course,” Falyn said. “When I was going up on my bike I said, ‘When does this end?’”
Falyn’s mother, Caitlin, joined her daughter in the race. It was Caitlin’s third time competing in the event, so she gave Falyn a heads-up about some of the more difficult parts of the race.
“My mom told me Devil’s Playground and after Glen Cove is when the road gets really steep,” Falyn said. “I didn’t even know I was there until I was past it. And then I didn’t even know I was past tree line for a while. I looked up and there were no more trees. I came around a corner and there was the summit house and I knew that was the end of the race.”
Falyn was happy to ride at her mother’s pace during the early stages of the event, because she is so used to riding with her mother. Caitlin reminded her daughter to run her race and give the mountain all she had.
She told her daughter, “‘Falyn, go, go! Don’t wait for me! You’re in a race.’”
Falyn, who had a 3.8 GPA in school last year, said she plans to compete in the Cycling Hill Climb next year. Her siblings — Amelia (a junior at Cheyenne Mountain High School) and Paine (a fifth grader at Gold Camp Elementary School) — also plan compete in the race. Their mom, Caitlin, also plans to race again in 2022.
“It’s an incredible experience,” Caitlin said.
Making this year’s race even more special for the Murphy family was that Falyn rode a street legal Class 1 Biktrix Juggernaut Classic Mountain Ebike, one of the bikes Caitlin rents through her business, Rocke Mountain Bike.
In fact, the second and third-place finishers in the competitive division also rode on Biktrix Juggernaut Classic Mountain Ebikes.
“The E-bike enables you to do something you normally wouldn’t do and still have that challenge,” Caitlin said.