BC Bike Race Day 6, Stage 7 – The Grand Finale

BC Bike Race Day 6, Stage 7 – The Grand Finale

Location: PentictonTrail Network: Trail Networks, Three Blind MiceDistance Total: 45.5km (28.5 km’s Raced)Vertical: 1319 metersPresented By: Rocky Mountain Bikes[/B]Stage 7 ResultsPhoto Credit: Dave Silver “We are all here as a community to do what we love, crank the pedals, smash the berms, and high-five all the efforts of each and every human achievement in the “Ultimate Singletrack Experience!” – Andreas Hestler The final day, the grand finale, is in the bag. The perfect wrap up to an incredible week of stories, adventures, mishaps, saves, and lifetime milestones. This year’s BC Bike Race was an epic adventure, sublime and diverse, shared by a like-minded group of racers from all over the world who simply love mountain biking in all its glory. “I had a great day. It’s not just about today, it’s about the journey and working hard. It’s awesome here, one of the highlights of my life”! – Bill Juhasz - Canadian Six days of racing in the South Okanagan, seven stages of terroir-nouveaux never before sampled by the denizens of the BC Bike Race alumni new and old. This all new odyssey, in an all new location with such varied and vibrant flavours but with all the same energy and vibe, has been validated by smiles, high-fives and a solid coming together of this community. “It was a great week out here in Penticton, BC Bike Race has been on the bucket list for a lot of years. Finally had a chance to do it, loved the competition, loved the new trails, the terrain, just being part of the BC Bike Race community is a lot of fun”!...
The Penultimate Day, Andrew L’Esperance fends off all foes – Day 5 of the BCBR

The Penultimate Day, Andrew L’Esperance fends off all foes – Day 5 of the BCBR

  BC Bike Race Day 5, Stage 6The Penultimate Day, Andrew L’Esperance fends off all foes Location: PentictonTrail Network: Trail Networks, Campbell MountainDistance Total: 36km (24.5km raced)Vertical: 1067 metersPresented By: Clif BarStage 6 ResultsPhoto Credit: Dave Silver The penultimate day of BC Bike Race 2021 was concluded in a wicked-fast fashion on the buff and relentless trails of Campbell Mountain, Penticton. Under brilliant blue skies the racers rolled out of the start/finish area in Penticton and made their way through the neutral zone’s lush green vineyards, and onto the base of the trail network. From here the proverbial gun fired and the first salvo of attacks was launched. Brilliant blue skiesand lush green vineyards While the majority of racers are Canadian this year, we are happy to welcome racers from the UK, USA, South Africa, Spain, Mexico, Belgium, Dubai, Italy, and Germany. This has been a special year, a tough year, and yet we at BC Bike Race are so grateful to get back to business putting on, “The Ultimate Singletrack Experience,” for all of our racers. Today’s morning temperatures were just shy of balmy, and most racers wore vests or arm warmers at the start. But by the time the racers crossed the finish line the Okanagan sun was warmly welcoming everyone home from what turned out to be a doozy of a course. Once this route was engaged by the racers it was a full-on virtuoso of quad smashing ups, fast running berms, woops and edge-of-the-seat precipices. The risk of derailment was real; too fast in any direction and… Another flavour has been added to the overall journey enjoyed...
The Peak to Beach Route – Locals Favorite – Day 4 of the BCBR.

The Peak to Beach Route – Locals Favorite – Day 4 of the BCBR.

Location: PentictonTrail Network: Trail Networks, Three Blind MiceDistance Total: 40.5km (24km on the clock)Vertical: 967 metersPresented By: MaxxisDay 4, Stage 5 ResultsPhoto Credit: Dave Silver Today’s race was fast, furious, and ferocious. The “Beach to Peak” route was designed by Dean Payne, el Presidenté of BC Bike Race, a recent transplant to Naramata. This route is an ode to the North Shore (his former residence); one big up and one long undulating endlessly flowing down, punctuated with tech-gnar. Today, featured another neutral start, traipsing along the KVR from Penticton to the timing matts. Riding past the wineries of the Naramata bench, the racers’ warm-up has been perfectly served-up on a platter, and the 10am start coincided with the best temperatures of the day. Imagine that, enough time for 2 coffees. Or 3!  And a planned roll out… Bryana Blanchard (BMB Racing) has been exchanging the lead in the womens 40+ solo category with Kimberly Quinlan (Outdoor Gear Exchange / Julbo / Vittoria) since day 1. These women are locked in an epic battle, two wins for Bryana and two wins for Kimberly. It would seem that they are well matched on both the climbing and the technical descending, who will reach deep into the tool shed to pull out some extra tricks for the following days. As of day 4, stage 5 they are separated by 1min 22 seconds, this in a see-saw battle with anyone’s guess as to who will take the final victory. While many categories are exciting, this one is truly worth watching, as the contenders are well matched and seem to have different yet similar styles. Two...
Alpine adventures and loamy goodness! Day 3 of the BCBR.

Alpine adventures and loamy goodness! Day 3 of the BCBR.

Location: Apex MountainTrail Network: Trail Networks, Apex Mountain Ski Resort, Nickel Plate Nordic AreaDistance Total: 27kmVertical: 998 metersPresented By: FOXDay 3, Stage 4 ResultsPhoto Credit: Dave Silver After several perfect Okanagan days, the BC Bike Race route headed high into the alpine of Apex Mountain Ski Resort for a slight change of scenery. All week the weather had ominously forecast showers and cooler temperatures for today. While no rain did manifest during the body of the race, the temperature did fall a bit lower than normal, 8 degrees. All racers were gear-ready and stoked to tackle yet another distinct flavour of Okanagan singletrack. There are races and racers. And then there are the groups who come out to challenge themselves and their buddies to have fun, experience something new and seek alternate adventures in new locations.  Within the BC Bike Race 2021 we have many groups, some of them a bit larger, more organized.  One of which is Team Bison, mostly from Victoria BC and parts nearby, who were given their name due to their physical size. The majority of their group is big, strong, rugby players, dads, and now mountain bikers donning cowboy hats, emblazoned jerseys, and a heck of a fun bunch of guys! They enjoyed the labours of each day and waited at each finish line for the last group member to finish.  They cheer for almost everybody and are the embodiment of the spirit of sports and racing – high five to Team Bison! At the pointy end of the stick, ex cross-country, multiple time national mountain bike champion, Eric Tourville, is owning the yellow...
Geoff Kabush takes the Day in a two-stage format, Laurie Arseneault pads her lead! Day 2 of the BCBR.

Geoff Kabush takes the Day in a two-stage format, Laurie Arseneault pads her lead! Day 2 of the BCBR.

  Location: SummerlandTrail Network: Trail Networks, Cartwright and ConkleDistance Total: 35km (32Km on the clock)Vertical: 972 metersPresented By: SHIMANOSTAGES 2 & 3 RESULTSPhoto Credit: Dave Silver Today’s race in Summerland was composed of two-timed stages. This picturesque agricultural valley has amazing mountain biking on either end of it, with Cartwright to the north and Conkle to the south. A small neutral connection of three kilometers between the two mountains enabled racers to rest and refuel before hitting the throttle again for round two of the day.  The cool morning air gave way to 18-degree temperatures and bluebird skies providing unparalleled views of the South Okanagan beauty.  With yesterday’s gnar-fest done and dusted the field of racers is beginning to settle down. Yesterday was costly for some athletes like Karsten Madsen, Geoff Kabush, and Corey Wallace (all three suffered mechanicals in the form of flat tires). They may have lost a chance for the overall, we’ll see.  That being said, today was another day and another chance to shine.  Kabush, the consummate champion, took full advantage and won the day, while Laurie Arseneault floated effortlessly down the trails, and continued to pad her lead. Haley Smith and Katelyn Button are riding strongly in 2nd and 3rd and this is a stage race with more gnar on the agenda, anything can happen. Four more days remain, with Stage 4 (Day 3) kicking off on Apex Mountain tomorrow, at 10am. The vibe is good, the singletrack plentiful and everyone is breathing easier; excited and happy to get back to good-ol-mountain bike racing. Stage Results (Stage 2 and 3 Combined Results) Open Womens Laurie...
Andrew L’Esperance and Laurie Arseneault throw down and win, Day 1 of the BCBR

Andrew L’Esperance and Laurie Arseneault throw down and win, Day 1 of the BCBR

Location: Penticton, South OkanaganTrail Network: Three Blind MiceDistance Total: 36km (24Km on the clock)Vertical: 988 metersPresented By: Pearl IzumiStage One ResultsPhoto Credit: Dave Silver Up and Running! It has been 26 months since the last edition of the BC Bike Race and the energy was palpable. The heralded return of the BC Bike Race began on a beautiful sunny day in the city of Penticton, South Okanagan. Riders from as far as Dubai, Florida, and the UK have converged on this new venue to see what is in store for them. Racers were chomping at the bit to get out and stretch their legs. What have the ingenious masterminds of BCBR laid out?  If day one is any indicator, this week will be a full-blown mountain bike extravaganza, something along the lines of, “The Ultimate Singletrack Experience.”  Go figure eh!! They Found What They Came For. With some heavy hitters taking the line and a nice aperitif of trails and venues on the menu, here are the results of Day 1. With five more days to go. This show-down promises to be a doozy from start to finish. And for those simply out for a ride there are plenty of rip-snorting good times ahead. Nobody will leave this year’s edition disappointed. Open Womens ResultsLaurie Arseneault                               - 1:35:24Haley Smith                                         - 1:38:44Katelyn Button                                    - 1:43:03 Open Mens ResultsAndrew L’Esperance                           - 1:17:34Felix Burke                                          - 1:19:50Carter Nieuwesteeg                            - 1:20:07 Team of 2 Mixed ResultsEmily Batty, Adam Morka                   - 1:48:47Julie Pheonix, Rob Phoenix                 - 2:15:53Kathy Beresford, Andy Smallman       - 2:25:53 40+ WomenKimberley Quinlan                              - 1:55:20Bryna Blanchard                                 - 1:56:47Lyndsay Wrightson                             - 2:01:5 40+ MenEric Tourville                                      ...