Monday, May 15, 2006

Winners Announces For THE NEVADA PASSAGE - Made-for-TV Adventure Competition

Winners Honored in NEVADA PASSAGE Made-for-TV Adventure Competition; Viewing Starts in August

A two-member coed team of accountants won THE NEVADA PASSAGE made-for-television adventure competition Saturday after scoring the most points during six days of challenging sports that concluded with Jet Ski racing on the Colorado River, Lt. Gov. Lorraine Hunt, chair of the Nevada Commission on Tourism (NCOT), announced.

Linda Lindsay, 41, a bookkeeper from Petaluma, Ca., and Nate Simonson, 28, a credit analyst from Reno, Nev., received the winners′ trophy at the Laughlin Bay Marina. THE NEVADA PASSAGE is designed to promote rural Nevada as an adventure destination to more than 2 million television viewers in 100 markets and to Internet visitors worldwide.

"All 20 of the fine athletes from around the nation who competed in THE NEVADA PASSAGE experienced challenging adventures in ruggedly beautiful rural Nevada," Hunt said.

The one-hour syndicated program will air from August through February 2007, then will be seen on, where last year′s exciting 2005 NEVADA PASSAGE currently is viewable and downloadable.

"Nevada is a premier outdoor recreation destination and THE NEVADA PASSAGE allows us to deliver that message in the most dynamic, entertaining way possible," NCOT Director Bruce Bommarito said.

THE NEVADA PASSAGE paired 20 hand-picked athletes into 10 two-person coed teams, by profession. Taking second place honors for the highest overall score for the six days was the developers team, Gina DeTolve, 37, a project engineer from Valencia, Calif., and Ken Robins, 43, owner of a building renovation company from Cutchogue, N.Y.

Placing No. 3 overall was the firefighters team, Erin Price, 29, of Greensboro, N.C., and David Blondfield, 44, of Reno, Nev. Price was THE NEVADA PASSAGE overall winner in 2005 with Brian Rothell, 42, of Richmond, Va., who competed again this year but was sidelined with a shoulder injury on the second day. Blondfield replaced Rothell.

In the daily competition, the financiers team, Rebecca Batizy, 30, a financial adviser from Boulder, Colo., and Tim Sprague, 47, vice president of finance for a Las Vegas home building corporation, won the first event, May 8, pedaling recumbent bicycles on a remote highway south of Battle Mountain. Developers Robins and DeTolve, won the second day′s competition, steer riding in Winnemucca.

Accountants Simonson and Lindsay won the third and fourth days of competition, pumping antique railway handcars in Virginia City, and racing mountain bikes, then running on foot in Austin. Teachers Laura Home, 32, of Santa Cruz, Calif., and Roger Villmow, 43, of Colorado Springs, Colo., won the fifth event, racing Corvettes in Pahrump.

All of the events were scored by a point system with the winning team getting 20 and the team placing last, or 10th, getting one point.

Other competing teams were Entrepreneurs: Stephanie Weisel, 43, of Paia, Hawaii and Casey Fannin, 45, of Birmingham, Ala.; Journalists: writer Stefani Jackenthal, 39, of New York City and "Frazz" cartoonist Jef Mallett, 44, of Lansing, Mich.; Medics: Elizabeth Kollen, 25, a nurse from Minneapolis, Minn. and Richard Costello, 39, an emergency medical technician from Warmister, Pa.; Sheriffs: Police Officer Ana Maria Gill, 38, of Long Beach, Calif., and Sheriff′s Deputy Brian Atkinson, 29, of Reno, Nev.; and (physical) Trainers: Lynn Henderson, 46, of Reno, Nev., and Jay Hachadoorian, 33, of New York.