Author Topic: BC Bike Race  (Read 281 times)

Svend

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BC Bike Race
« on: October 10, 2012, 08:53:24 am »
While out visiting my father-in-law on Vancouver Island last week, I had a chance to have a long chat with his best friend, Don Gill, about a mountain bike stage race that he competed in this past summer.  For those who may not be familiar with this one, it's called the BC Bike Race, and it attracts about 500 riders every summer, from 33 different countries in Europe, S. America, Africa, and of course Canada and U.S..  It's a 7 day stage race totaling about 350 km, starting in Cumberland, Vancouver Island, and ending in Whistler.  Some of the best riders in the world take part -- I think Brian Lopes did it last year.

Don finished 34th out of 109 riders in the Solo Masters category.  They rode for about 5 hours per day; washed their bikes and clothes; collapsed from exhaustion; slept; and did it all again the next day.  He said it was the experience of a lifetime -- just a fantastic event.  Incredible trails, and they met some wonderful people from all over the world.

There are lots of pictures and videos on the web, but here's a quick video collage:  http://www.bcbikerace.com/news-and-media/videos

The trails just look amazing.  And to think that is right in Don's backyard. 

For those tech heads here, Don rode a Giant Trance carbon 26er.  He said it was dead-reliable; not a single problem....not even a flat.  Just wash-n-wear easy.

So, hats off to Don for getting out there and doing it -- quite an achievement for a guy of age 60!

« Last Edit: October 10, 2012, 08:55:57 am by Svend »


jim-ratliff

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Re: BC Bike Race
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2012, 10:53:29 am »
Svend:
26erfull suspension because that's what he rides, or because he felt that was better for the given terrain/trails than a 29er or a hardtail.
"If you're gonna play the game boy, ya gotta learn to play it right."

Svend

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Re: BC Bike Race
« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2012, 11:11:30 am »
Don owns about 5 bikes (I didn't count, but approx. that many).  His favourite bike of all time, and one that he still uses for recreational riding out the back door, is an older Kona 26er hardtail with a scandium frame.  However, for a long multi-day race like this, he chose the full suspension because of the rough terrain and the comfort / less fatiguing ride that the Trance provides.  Although the video doesn't show it, the trails out in BC are VERY challenging.  Nothing at all like what we have here in Ontario (I can't speak for the NE U.S.).  Don would have been pretty beat up after 7 days on a hardtail on those trails.

As for a 29er, he is a pretty small guy, about 5'5" or 5'6", and he feels awkward riding the big wheeled bikes.  That size just doesn't work for him.  We chatted about the 650B size, though, and he is pretty stoked to try one.

FWIW, he just bought a Giant Anthem 26er which he is having a lot of fun on.  He really likes that bike a lot.  I'm not sure if it's carbon or alloy, though.

« Last Edit: October 10, 2012, 12:00:02 pm by Svend »

bushwacka

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Re: BC Bike Race
« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2012, 06:24:08 pm »
Svend:
26erfull suspension because that's what he rides, or because he felt that was better for the given terrain/trails than a 29er or a hardtail.

my own testing is saying that the bike doesnt matter and skill and pedaling force does. With said the hardtail is only faster on smooth climbs and no where else.

strava is also proving that I may actually be the fastest MTBer in stowe.




Svend

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Re: BC Bike Race
« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2012, 07:48:19 pm »
Don rides his Kona hardtail because it's FUN.  He doesn't race with it.  He has done multi-day endurance stage races in BC before (this was his first BC Bike Race, but he has done others in the BC interior), and for those he always chooses a full suspension bike for comfort and performance over the very rugged terrain out there.

I really can't describe how gnarly the trails are out there.  On Vancouver Island I have ridden what they classify as easy trails, and found them plenty challenging to get through -- they would be rated as Expert here in the east.  Now I understand how such solid, bomb-proof bikes come out of the manufacturers based in the Vancouver North Shore area - Norco, Rocky, and such.  Anything less than super-burly build would just fall apart.  That said, Don has had good success with his Giant bikes -- he has replaced plenty of components on them, but the frames have always been reliable.

« Last Edit: October 11, 2012, 08:43:11 am by Svend »