1952 to 2013

Carl "Red Dog" Blair will be remembered as one of the friendliest riders in the peloton, always willing to offer a tired cyclist his wheel and a generous draft. He’ll also be remembered as one of LoToJa’s true pioneers, who was there during the race’s early years in the 1980s.

I actually purchased a road bike only months prior to the race and had been a "couch potato" previous to that. Early 2005 my wife was teasing me that I was getting fat, so I bought a bike online and then entered the longest race I could find just to prove to her that I was still "the man." After assembling my bike I bought a Lance Armstrong book at the nearest Barnes and Noble and my race career was officially started.

Carl Dean Blair, 61, of Kaysville, Utah, died on July 6, 2013 as a result of injuries he sustained in a cycling accident while training with friends. Passionate about riding a bike, Carl started and finished LoToJa an astounding 25 times. In tribute to him, his family received an honorary LoToJa 5000 Award for this impressive achievement that speaks volumes about the man’s spirit and principles.

Since the LoToJa’s first year in 1983, over 16,000 cyclists have ridden it. Only Carl, who rode his first LoToJa in 1986, and three other cyclists, have ridden it 25 times or more. Along the way, he has mentored hundreds who looked to him for advice and encouragement to begin and finish this challlenging race. To his lovely wife, Marilyn, his children Jeff, Julie, Rand and Lindsay, and to his nine grandchildren, our thoughts and prayers are with you.

And to Carl, thank you. All the passion and encouragement you have shared over the past quarter century, has helped make LoToJa what it is today. Your space in the peloton can never be filled. You will be missed and may you always be remembered for your generous heart — and your tenacity to reach the finish line at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, year after year.