Photos by Karen Kefauver
Santa Cruz is, and has always been, home to a thriving mountain biking community. A few years back, organizers (the local, Mountain bikers of Santa Cruz club) decided that the best way to highlight that fact would be to launch a festival just before Sea Otter rolls into Monterey, an hour south.
Now in its fourth year, the annual Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival will take place on April 13-14, 2013 (the weekend before the Sea Otter Classic) at the Barry Swenson Builder property in Aptos Village, California.
The Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival, keeps growing by leaps and bounds. Last year, the festival boasted a 50 percent increase in attendance and athlete participation over the previous year, attracting more than 6,000 spectators, 200 amateur and professional athletes, 200 kids' rodeo participants, 70 sponsors, and 150 volunteers. The festival's success testifies to the depth of the mountain bike culture in Santa Cruz county.
Mark Jordan, title sponsor FOX's Global Communications Manager, affirms "The Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival takes everything that is great about the local mountain bike scene and brings it all together in one place. From families to amateurs and pros, the festival has something for everyone. We are happy to be a part of it."
The Santa Cruz Mountain Bike festival features a variety of events that represent cycling in Santa Cruz county:
*Specialized/Scotts Valley Cycle Sport SHORT TRACK
*Epicenter Cycling/Saris Cycling Group PUMP TRACK PANDEMONIUM
*Summer Gravity Camps 831 AMATEUR JUMP CONTEST
*831 PRO JUMP JAM
*KIDS' FUN LAP
*Sweetlines/Cliff Bar BIKE SKILLS CLINICS
PLUS Kat Sweet brings SUGAR SHOWDOWN to the Aptos Post Office Jumps!
REGISTER EARLY AND SAVE
Athletes and skills clinic participants who register by Sunday, March 24, 2013 will enjoy discounts up to $10.
Mountain Bike Skills and Enduro Skills Clinic participants can save an additional $10 when registering for the Short Track race at amateur level. Sugar Showdown Skills Class participants can save an additional $10 when registering for the Pump Track Pandemonium contest at amateur level. Skills clinics participants are sure to compete with confidence after honing new skills.
On-line registration for all events will close on Wednesday, April 10, 2013 at 11:59 pm.
BRING THE RUG RATS
Maybe you want to skulk away from the homestead for a weekend of riding, but don’t want to come home to an angry spouse and your abandoned offspring. Fortunately, the Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival offers all sorts of activities for the people in your family who don’t use words like “gnar”, “chunder” and “bitchin”.
Kids aged 3-12 can try their skills at the Kids' Rodeo, tackling obstacles in a challenging and supportive (no heckling, little-league parents) environment. And, of course, there’s a beer garden where Junior can chill after crushing the obstacle course.
The event will be held at Aptos Village (think “south Santa Cruz”) from 9am-6pm Saturday and 9am-4pm Sunday. Admittance to the Expo Area is free–a true bonus as the place should be loaded with industry vendors, test ride demo bikes, and you can even snag a shuttle to the top of Soquel Demonstration Forest.
For race and contest registration, schedule and event details please visit the SCMBF website
SUPER ENDURO TO ROLL IN OCTOBER
Last year the festival included an enduro race, but crap weather always threatens to make a muck of it, so MBoSC recently announced that for 2013 the Santa Cruz Super Enduro (SCSE) will run at Soquel Demonstration State Forest (Demo) October 12-13, 2013, as part of the newly-formed California Enduro Series. Sorry, but at least you won’t grind your new components into a muddy paste.