VAIL — The Vail Recreation District will kickoff its summer season of mountain-bike racing on Wednesday with the Athletic Club at the Westin Mountain Bike Race Series, Battle at Bellyache.
The Battle at Bellyache is a new course and will take adult racers in the beginner through expert categories up Bellyache Road from The Bluffs Neighborhood in Eagle, onto the Boneyard trail, down Pool and Ice trail and then, depending on race category, on to the Haymaker trail. These categories will race between 6 and 11 miles. Youth racers ages 8 to 14 will race on the new Haymaker trail and ride between 2.6 to 5.2 miles. This is the first race of the seven-race series, which is presented by East West Resorts, Summit Ford, New Belgium Brewing Co., The Dusty Boot and Howard Head Sports Medicine.
Individual adult race costs are $25 in advance or $35 on race day. Racers also can register for the entire race series for $165. Teams of up to 25 riders can compete for the overall series title as well. The Larkburger Youth Series presented by KidSPORT (ages 8-17) and costs $60 for the entire series or $10 for individual races ahead of time and $15 on race day.
Prizes will be presented to the top three finishers of each category after each race, with series prizes awarded to the top finishers in each category at the end of the final race of the season. Raffle prize drawings will be held at each race awards ceremony featuring products from area merchants and national companies.
ENJOY THE AFTER-PARTY
This Wednesday’s race will include an after-party at The Dusty Boot in Eagle Ranch with a free keg of beer provided by the race series’ new beverage partner, New Belgium Brewing Co. Prizes also will be presented after the race to the top three finishers of each category, as well as a raffle prize drawing featuring products from race sponsors, area merchants and national companies.
Participants are asked to park at the Eagle Pool and Ice Arena parking lots or at the after-party location at The Dusty Boot and ride to the start. Racers are encouraged to avoid parking at the Eagle Valley Middle or Elementary School parking lots to avoid congestion within the Bluff’s neighborhood. There is no parking allowed in the Bluff’s neighborhood.
OTHER UPCOMING RACES
The race series will continue throughout the summer with the next race on June 4 in Edwards for the Berry Creek Bash. The series will then feature the Camp Hale Hup on June 18 near Red Cliff, the Vail Grind on July 9 on Vail Mountain, the Eagle Ranch Classic on July 23, the Davos Dash on Aug. 13 in West Vail and finish with the Beaver Creek Blast on Aug. 27 in Beaver Creek.
In addition to the Athletic Club at the Westin, East West Resorts, Summit Ford, New Belgium Brewing Co., The Dusty Boot and Howard Head Sports Medicine, sponsors of the races include FirstBank of Vail, The Steadman Phillipon Research Institute, The Steadman Clinic, New York Life and Ryan Van Ness, Central Rockies Mortgage, Apex Dental, Vail, Beaver Creek, POC, Vail Honeywagon, Optic Nerve, Outdoor Tech, Avon Liquor, Yellowbelly Chicken, KZYR The Zephyr and KSKE Colorado’s Ski Country. The Youth Series is presented by Larkburger and KidSPORT. Photos of the 2013 race series were taken by Scott McClarrinon and are available online at www.mcclarrinon photography.com.
Registration, course information and start times are available by calling 970-479-2280. For information on all other VRD programs and activities, visit www.vailrec.com or call 970-479-2279.