Words by Brice Minnigh
Photos by Morgan Meredith
Bike magazine’s own Team Sad Sacks is off to a fun start at the 2012 BC Bike Race, making countless new friends and savoring highest-quality singletrack they’ve ever experienced in a stage race. Riders from 33 countries were either pleasantly surprised or shocked by the technical nature of the course. The vast majority of contestants completed the first stage intact–and with smiles on their muddy faces. Due to rainy weather over the previous week the course was wet in places causing the abundant roots to present a slippery challenge.
An awesome addition to this year’s format is the ‘Gravity Enduro’, which records separate times for specified technical sections of the trail for a race within the main race. This is intended to place greater emphasis on the most challenging and fun aspect of the race.
Check bikemag.com for regular updates and Instagram (@bikemag) insights into life on and off the course.
Here’s glimpse from days zero and one from Team Sad Sacks:
The BC Bike Race is a complex logistical puzzle. To help the 502 racers in this year's event figure out all the pieces, Day 0 includes a mandatory meeting to give everyone the skinny on the next several days.
One of the biggest little perks of the BC Bike Race is the fact that the staff sets up and breaks down all of the tents.
The race starts at 9.30 am with a short fireroad warm-up before turning off into some world-class singletrack.
This event is a proper operation. There are over 160 volunteers that make it happen.
Sammies, fresh fruit and the obligatory bars and gels—the aid stations have everything you need to stay strong.
Over 40 kilometers into the 54-kilometer stage, and this was our first hike-a-bike—a testament to the sheer quality of the trails and the thoughtful course design.
Every climb on the BC Bike Race is followed by a ripping descent.
No need to keep your head down for the entire stage when you have views like this.
Steep grinders like this are much easier when you have such tacky dirt.
It's easy to get fired up when you see the sign for the Gravity Enduro—the timed segments of the raddest parts of the course. It's just another sign that this is a race for real mountain bikers.
The tent city is truly a home away from home.
And the food is designed to keep all the racers shredding for seven straight days.
Real men, like Rad Ross Schnell, eat bubblegum ice cream for dessert.