Rochester Active Sports Club (RASC) is a nonprofit club based in Rochester Minnesota, designed to promote nordic skiing, mountain biking and road biking in SE Minnesota.

Month: June 2020

Jun 1
Jul 1

RASC Chasing Dogs Reports

New Google map created by Marty Cormack that documents locations of dogs known to chase cyclists and runners.Below is a description of the app from Marty

Recently while taking a gravel ride on an unfamiliar road in Olmsted County I was surprised and chased hard by a loose German Shepherd.  I had no time to react and nearly lost control of my bicycle.  It would have been helpful, and more safe had I been aware of the possibility of being chased on that route.  Unfortunately Olmsted County has no ordinance regarding loose dogs chasing pedestrians or bicyclists on public roads, so there is not a lot of recourse for these situations, other than awareness.

Back in the days of message boards, RASC had maintained a thread on chasing dog reports.  However, the data was more than five years old, and in dog years, that is nearly an eternity. Given my experience in the Google toolset, I set about creating a new, easier to use and maintain tool to remedy that situation.


Using Google Sites, Google Maps and Google Forms. I created a web page ( that shows the location of reports of dogs chasing bicyclists and runners.  Below the map is a Google Form that can easily record any new reports.  When a report is submitted, I am immediately notified via email of the new report, and I can very easily add the new "pin" to the map.  The map can be scrolled and zoomed.  If you click on the pin, the specific details of the report is displayed, including the date and breed, if known.  The map and form work well on computers, tablets and Smartphones. Please let me know of any suggested improvements.



Ski Bindings

Thanks to the North Star Ski Touring Club, we have been awarded a grant of $2860 to cover the cost of replacing all the old bindings on our RNST club skis. The new bindings will be delivered this fall and we plan to replace the bindings on ~60 of our 115 pairs this fall, with the remaining skis being upgraded early next year. 


RASC Board and Committees

Need to contact us - see the complete list of RASC Board members and committee members here.

Weekly Group Rides are postponed until further notice

due to concerns regarding the COVID-19 virus

We are still planning on having group rides with leaders this summer, but this is obviously dependent on status of COVID-19.

Bike Summit 2020 - Virtual


Rochester Bike Summit is going digital!

As you already know, WeBikeRochester are unable to hold their annual bike summit in real life, so they are going to help you celebrate bike month by providing digital sessions.

Here's the registration information for the online Bike Summit sessions 

All of these sessions will be held via Zoom, thanks to BikeMN.To attend a session, click the designated button to register through Eventbrite. The link for the Zoom session will appear at the bottom of the ticket you receive by email from Eventbrite.

For some extra incentive, they will be awarding door prizes for attending the online sessions and for participating in the Virtual Social Rides Photo Challenge (see below). A participant will earn one entry for each session attended and for each photo posted (max one photo per week). Winners will be determined using a random number generator.

Session 1 - May 12

May 12: 4-5pm - City of Rochester (Jaymi Wilson) and Destination Medical Center (Kevin Bright)

Session 2 - May 19

May 19: 4-5pm - Safe Routes to School (Dani Gardner) and Bicycle Alliance of MN (Dorian Grilley)

Session 3 - May 26

May 26: 4-5pm - Rochester Active Sports Club (Michael O'Connor) and Flood Control Project (Gary Neumann)

All are welcome to join the weekly Virtual Social Rides ( and to participate in the Photo Challenge. Each photo should include your bike at the following locations.

Week 1: at your favorite Rochester drive-through coffee place,
Week 2: at your favorite Rochester covid19 curbside restaurant/retailer,
Week 3: at your favorite Rochester Art4Trails sculpture.

Post photos here

2020 Bike Season Kickoff

Last night, 85 area cyclists attended our 2020 kickoff party to share some laughs, retell stories and meet friends.

Dave gave us the quick skinny on what is new for RASC in 2020.

Pete gave us a look at road cycling plans for this year. Rides start next week: Monday from Bamber Elementary School and Wednesday from the Bicycle Sports @ 6pm sharp!

Beginning in May, C and D groups will include leaders that will work the make those rides more friendly for new riders.  Visit the Ride Planner.

Jackson shared mountain bike trail updates & plans and brought us up to speed on the Rochester High School Mountain Bike team.  Visit Gamehaven and Eastwood for live condition updates throughout the season.

Joel shared news of area gravel rides, future RASC fun ride events and more.  Be sure to check back here and join the Google Group to see upcoming events.

Guest speaker Trent Raygor spoke a bit about the past and future of gravel cycling, then screened his Banff Film entry 'Delta Of Spirit' for us.

Carolyn has opened the Pactimo jersey store through 3/15/2020 with a nice discount due to our volume.  Be sure to get your kit ordered asap. Pactimo Store   password: RASC

RNST Alumnus 2nd in Birkie

Congrats to Rochester's Ian Torchia on placing 2nd overall in this year's American Birkie

View from camera at the finish line shows Ian Torchia (on left of picture) finishing second and beating out France’s Robin Duvillard, an Olympian and multiple-time World Championships racer, into third place by 0.3 seconds. Niklas Dyrhaug, a 32-year-old Norwegian Olympian and World Cup regular, beat out Ian by 1.6 seconds!

Essex Loopy Loppet

Thanks to Mike Trantow and the RASC grooming team for a very successful inaugural Essex Loopy Loppet race. A total of 53 skiers participated in this event, with many doing the double or triple loppet distances. The event raised $635 towards support of the Essex and Quarry Hill trails. Great way to raise money and have fun at the same time.

This year's Birkie Warriors (Left to right) - Vergil, Caelan, and Tasha Pinckney and David Kettula were at the Essex Loopy Loppet and led off the event.

Full results are posted below.  


Overall Results          Lap Times

You can find more news on the event on KAAL and KTTC News

2019 Tour de Essex Results

The only rain in a 6 day period fell right during the Tour de Essex trail run on Saturday, October 19, 2019. Despite the slick conditions on the downhills, the runners successfully navigated the the rolling terrain of the 7.4 K course in very comfortable running conditions of 51 degrees and an 8 mph west wind. A large washed out, rough section of trail caused by recent heavy rains added another twist to the run.

Noah Billings scampered across the finish line in first running at an 8:01 mile pace. Lonny Olson-Williams (8:11 min/mile) and Randy Shelerud (8:20 mile pace) placed 2nd and 3rd.

Finishing first among women and 4th overall was Kris Nelson cranking out 8:54 minute miles. The next women following Kris over the line were Sabrena Resman (10:28 min/mile) and Beth Kangas (12:21/mile).

Congratulations to all of the runners who conquered greasy conditions on the challenging hills of the Tour de Essex.

Tour de Essex Results 2019

Gamehaven Lakeside Grind

Minnesota Series Mountain Bike Race

September 22, 2019

Congrats to RASC member, Noah Billings, on taking 1st in his age group and 4th overall at USA Triathlon 2019 Youth & Junior National Championships in Westchester, Ohio!

Thanks to Ian Torchia for two great dryland training clinics on August 17th. If you missed the opportunity to attend one of these clinics, we are hoping to have ian back in Rochester for another clinic in November.

Below are video clips from the morning session from local news channels.

Congratulations to Jim Bennett who won the free pair of Marwe rollerskis donated by Finn Sisu!

Ian Torchia began skiing the day before he turned 2, but was on his Mom’s back long before then, sliding around Rochester’s golf courses during the winter months. He grew up a runner, chasing his older brother Mike around on the roads and trails and cross country skied in the winters as a member of the Rochester Nordic Ski Team. During his junior year in high school, Ian won the American Birkebeiner Korteloppet race and it was later that year, at his 1st Junior National championship in Fairbanks, Alaska, when Ian decided to cross-country ski at the collegiate level, breaking away from his 4 siblings’ tradition of running in college.  He attended Northern Michigan University under the direction of legendary ski coach Sten Fjeldheim, and accumulated 6 All-Americans, tied for most in program history. His junior season, he became an NCAA champion in the 20k freestyle in Steamboat, Colorado. He was a member of the US Development Ski Team for 3 years training alongside the nation’s best skiers.  Ian earned a Master’s degree in Exercise Science and is currently pursuing skiing at the professional level with the Stratton Mountain School T2 Elite Team, a professional ski team that boasts of 3 Olympians, including Gold Medalist Jessie Diggins.  Ian recently got engaged to his fiancĂ©, Kameron Burmeister, who he coached to a 2:42 marathon at Grandma’s, an Olympic Trials qualifier!  He is stoked to come back to Rochester this summer to teach and inspire the next generation of skiers!
Dryland Clinics with Ian Torchia are sponsored by the Rochester Active Sports Club and the Rochester Nordic Ski Team

Maplelag Photos

Photos from Maplelag time trial

Thanks to Anna Sortland for all these photos

1st place in the state!!

Congrats to the Rochester Middle School MTB Team on their 2018 season win!

Individual Top 10s for Middle/High School
3rd: Caleb Kittleson - JV2 Boys 
4th: Franziska Rinkleff - 8th Grade Girls

5th: Patrick McCauley - 8th Grade Boys
6th: Ari Walker - 8th Grade Boys
6th: Jack McCauley - 7th Grade Boys
6th: Veronika Voss - 7th Grade Girls
8th: Noah Billings - 7th Grade Boys
10th:Victoria Voss - Freshman Girls 


Trails Facebook

Google Group for Road Biking

Old RASC General Bulletin Board

Facebook Page for RNST

Facebook Page for Local Ski Trail Conditions 

© Rochester Active Sports Club
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software