Mountain biking fans of all ages and abilities are getting ready to celebrate the sport's defining celebration from August 8 to 17 at Crankworx Whistler. While the show-stopping events take centre stage on a global scale, there's just as much going on on the ground to help fans get in on all the action. The Crankworx festivities extend far beyond the pros, including new expanded Kidsworx and Familyworx programming, events and expo demonstrations that celebrate the culture of mountain biking and concerts that bring all the celebrations together over the course of 10 days of culture, competition and cranking.
"Crankworx is not just about watching the pros – it's about bringing people together to celebrate mountain bike culture," says Crankworx GM Darren Kinnaird. "We're into our second decade, and many of the athletes and fans that have been coming out to Crankworx since the beginning have kids now and want to be able to share this love with them. Crankworx is for the whole family and is about soaking up Whistler's mountain culture and summer spirit."
The Crankworx family is welcoming new events this year with the addition of Familyworx, a series of family-friendly activities and demos, as well as the growing lineup of kids races that will make up Kidsworx in 2014. Familyworx will bring bike-lovers of all ages together for fun events and hands-on participatory sessions including the Familyworx Run Bike Fun Races (August 9 and 17), the Familyworx Pump Track Sessions (August 9-12 and 14-17) and the Familyworx Photo Scavenger Hunt (August 9 and 14). For the littlest rippers, there will be Giant run bikes available to demo, as well a two available to be won. Familyworx sessions are free for all participants.
For those with a bit of two-wheeled experience behind them, the expansion of Kidsworx will provide the perfect platform for young athletes to compete alongside the pros and give them a true taste of Crankworx competition. New for this year are the Kidsworx Fat Tire Crit (August 8), the Kidsworx B-Line Race (August 11), the Fox Air DH Kidsworx Invitational (August 13) and the Kidsworx XC Race (August 15). Rounding out the list is the Kidsworx Pump Track Challenge (August 16). Kidsworx events require registration, either advance or on site. Additional information, including schedule and registration information can be found on crankworx.com.
Mountain biking fans looking to experience the action from a different angle have two great events to choose from – the GoPro Dirt Diaries and the Deep Summer Photo Challenge. On Tuesday, August 12, the GoPro Dirt Diaries will bring the creative and storytelling vision of top riders to the world. Six pro mountain bike athletes will compete in the video contest – overall it's a seven week process which gets whittled down to a four to six minute video that tells the athlete's mountain biking story.
Although I love racing and winning, mountain biking is so much more than that to me. Crankworx Whistler is 10 days jam packed with competitions and although Dirt Diaries is essentially a contest, it adds an artistic flavour to the festival that is so much a part of the mountain bike world.
"I think it’s really important to show the culture behind the mountain bike community," says Claire Buchar, one of the riders set to compete this year. "In the end, a medal and defeating others is not what you are going to take away from mountain biking. It’s the culture, the camaraderie, the community and the adventures we have in the mountains."
Meanwhile, the Deep Summer Photographer Challenge will bring together six pro photographers from around the world to share their take on mountain biking culture with the world on Wednesday, August 13. Working with a chosen team of athletes, artists spend three days shooting and editing a slideshow that brings together their vision.
Presentations and awards for both events go live in the Whistler Olympic Plaza with tickets available for purchase through Whistler Blackcomb Guest Relations.
For those looking to soak up even more of the spirit of Crankworx Whistler, two concerts will take the celebrations up a notch over the course of the festivities. Kicking things off on with a bang on Friday, August 8, will be 12-piece powerhouse party-funk band, Five Alarm Funk. Their notoriously energy-filled show will set the wheels of Crankworx in motion, keeping the party fueled until Thursday, August 14, when Whole Lotta Led will take things to the next level. This Led Zeppelin tribute band is sure to bring down the house and propel Crankworx into its final weekend. Both shows are free to attend and take place on the stage at the Whistler Olympic Plaza.
Full details for all the events can be found at www.crankworx.com.
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