Mountain Challenge bike racing series rides into Eagle
“We had almost 300 riders at this race last year,” said Mike Ortiz, Vail recreation district sports supervisor. “I think riders really enjoy this course because it’s pretty unique. Once we leave Eagle, the rest of the series takes place on alpine courses at much higher altitudes.”
The second race in the Beaver Creek and Vail Summer Adventure Ridge Mountain Challenge presented by Bud Light begins today at 6 p.m. at the Eagle Town Park on 5th Street. Riders will wind their way through town, behind Eagle Valley Middle School and onto a long climb on a relatively wide jeep road. The jeep road and the long climb help spread riders out before reaching the top of a narrow, winding, dusty single-track course. From there it’s all downhill back to the finish area. Depending on the division, riders will complete one to two-and-a-half laps of the 7.5-mile course.
The Elite-Pro riders will begin at 6 p.m., with other classes and divisions taking off at two minute intervals.
The first race of the season took place in Wolcott, and featured an hour delay between the expert, pros and beginners.
“We had 395 at the first race of the season,” said race coordinator Heather Bernard. “People can sign up for the race by 5:45. That’s when we have to make the cutoff.”
Following the race, riders will converge on the Eagle Town Park for free drinks and a raffle. The top three riders in each division will receive prizes from local sponsors and the pro or elite racers will earn cash awards.
For more information, racers can call the Vail Recreation District Sports Department at (970) 479-2280 or log onto http://www.vailrec.com for division distances and a course map.
Riders of all abilities are welcome to take part in the Mountain Challenge. Volunteers are needed for timing, registration and course marshal positions. Day-of-race registration will be available at the Eagle Town Park for $20.