On Sunday 8 August, 450 mountain bikers from 20 countries will gear up to start racing in the historic mountain town of Fernie, British Columbia. They’ll be there for the 9th edition of the TransRockies, North America’s original epic mountain bike stage race, and the 2nd edition of its sister event, the 3-day solo TR3.
The seven stages of the TransRockies include six massive point-to-point rides along the spine of the Rockies and a technical Day 1 time-trial loop through Fernie’s world-class singletrack. Riders who choose to ride the TR3 will finish their ride at the end of stage 3 having covered 167km of riding with 5,150 metres of climbing including a new crossing of the Continental Divide at nearly 2400 metres above sea level.
With the support of Travel Alberta and the Ministry of Tourism, Parks and Recreation, the 2010 edition of the TransRockies returns to the traditional Alberta route upon which its legend was built. The 2010 route includes two stopovers at western ranches and rides through the pristine Kananaskis Country Wilderness and it’s this combination of wilderness adventure and camping, authentic Western ranches and small town hospitality that’s unique to the TransRockies. It’s a key reason why riders come back year after year to challenge themselves against the unforgiving terrain and elements in the Rocky Mountains.
When the TransRockies riders roll across the finish line in Canmore on Saturday August 14th, they will have earned their finishers’ medals with 400km of riding and 12,000 metres of climbing on a new route through the high Rockies and some of the most spectacular scenery in the World. Along the way they’ll be tested by epic climbs, the always unpredictable Rocky Mountain weather and endless singletrack including highlights like Cox Hill and Jumpingpound Ridge in Kananaskis Country and Porky Blue, a new singletrack ride in Fernie which serves up an incredible 1000m of vertical in one continuous descent.
In 2010, the TransRockies and TR3 applied for and were granted S2 Stage Race status by the international cycling body UCI. This means that top finishers will receive international ranking points along with a generous cash purse of $30,000. With that in mind this year’s events feature the strongest-ever field of elite athletes ever including the likes of Max Plaxton (Team Sho-Air) and Matt Hadley (XPREZO-Borzac) who finished 2nd and 4th at the Canadian National Championships held in July, along with Adam Craig and Carl Decker of Team Giant fresh off their appearance in the Rally event at the X-Games. Those 4 will be taking on the TR3 and will try to take the crown from last year’s Champion Cory Wallace (KONA) who recently won the Canmore 24 Hours of Adrenalin.
In the full 7-day TransRockies, defending champions Marty Lazarski and Stefan Widmer (Rocky Mountain Factory Team) will be challenged by Barry Wicks and Kris Sneddon (KONA) who have enough speed and stage rage experience to be a genuine threat for the win. The Open Mixed Category will feature a battle between two former champions as 2009 winners Mical Dick and Jeff Neilson (Trek Canada/Terrascape) will take on 2007 and 2008 champs Wendy Simms and Normon Thibault (KONA/Frontrunners) who are back up to full racing speed after Simms maternity break.
In the end though, most of the riders who roll up to the start line of the TransRockies have the simple goals of completing the event and enjoying their epic ride through the Rockies. By the time they reach the finish line in Canmore seven days later, the Rockies will have pushed them to their limit, asked more of them than they expected, and reminded them that only those willing to go too far will know how strong they are. That’s why it’s said that people who take on the TransRockies “Find Out What’s Inside, Outside.”