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Bear Downs race joins bikes, music

April 17, 1997

By Christi Kushlan

Lariat Reporter

Students and other spectators gathered last night for the 26th Annual Bear Downs. A total of 18 teams participated in the race including one 'renegade biker,' the Orange Death team.

The Bear Down race was started 26 years ago and modeled after Indiana University's 'Little 500' race, which has been known to draw nearly 5,000 spectators, Anna Garvey, co-president of Student Foundation said.

This year 22 different businesses teamed up to sponsor the racers. Each sponsor or a combination of sponsors was required to donate at least $250, which paid for one team's race registration fee.

The winning team's prize was $500 this year, which was captured by the NADS in one hour, twenty-five minutes and fifty seconds.

The NADS included track members Keith Hensley, a Cajon, Calif., senior and David Monk, a Fairfield, Calif., senior and bicycle team members Danny Hernandez, a Corpus Christi freshman and Ben Thorton, a Waco senior.

When asked why the NADS entered the race, they simply replied, 'Just came to win!'

The NADS have big plans for their winnings, however. Hensley is marrying the captain of the tennis team this summer and said he would use his winnings to help pay for his wedding. In that same light, Monk said he was buying his plane ticket to Hensley's wedding with his winnings.

Hernandez, however, said his winnings were already spent.

'I'm going to use my money to pay off some debts,' Borrego said.

Thorton, who finished the race with his hands in the air, said he also was going to pay off some debts with his money.

'I plan on paying rent and a few other bills with my money,' Thorton said.

The Student Foundation teamed up this year with Freshmen Leadership Organization to bring five bands to the race.

'We are really excited about having five bands this year,' Colin Faulkner, co-chair of Bear Down's public relations committee said. 'We only had one band here last year.'

Not only did the band attract some attention away from the racers, but the 'Orange Death' team did also.

The Orange Death team consisted of Brandon Buhr, Monk's roommate, and Daniel Borrego, a Corpus Christi graduate student.

Even though the Orange Death were only able to ride four laps around the marked racing course, their purpose was definite.

'People are just too serious at this thing,' Buhr said. ' And we just wanted to add some more fun to it all.'

Other winners include the Ultra Sonic Defecators who won $350 in one hour, twenty-seven minutes and eighteen seconds, and third place winnings of $200 belong to Madadicas who fnished in one hour, twenty-nine minutes and fifty-four minutes.

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