It’s a big and busy week in the world of mountain biking and all eyes are on Mont-Saint-Anne for this weekends World Championships. Things got kicked off this past Wednesday with a relay race where the American squad captured second place. There was also an E-MTB World Championship (honestly didn’t know that was a real thing) where one of our local hammers Charlie Mullins put his moto-x skills to good use and took fourth amongst a bunch of serious pros.
We will be glued to the screens this weekend to see if Kate Courtney can hold onto the rainbow jersey for another season and if Aaron Gwin can put together the run we’ve been waiting see out of him this year.
The United States 2019 national downhill mountain bike champion and Can’d Aid Treads + Trails Ambassador, Neko Mulally, announced today that he will continue his efforts to get more kids on bikes this year. Mulally is once again donating his 2019 World Championship bike to Can’d Aid in hopes of raising $50,000 for the Treads + Trails program through a raffle HERE.
Every dollar from Neko’s bike raffle benefits Can’d Aid’s people-powered do-goodery efforts through their Treads + Trails program. Through the program, volunteers have built and gifted more than 2,800 bicycles to underprivileged youth, restored miles of multi-use trails and worked to get people outside enjoying healthy and active lifestyles. Last year’s raffle raised $26,000 and Neko’s goal is to nearly double those numbers this year.
You can catch Neko in action along with the rest of the UCI World Cup competitors as they invade Snowshoe Mountain for the last round of the series. We had a chance to get a sneak peek at the course and the bike park, you can see more about that here.
In news off of the racecourse, the apparel company Kitsbow is moving its operation to Asheville, NC. Kitsbow will be joining a growing list of bike industry players to call the Asheville area home, and with the epic trails of the Pisgah National Forest at their fingertips who can blame them. Kitsbow aims to have its new facilities up and running before the end of 2019 and to manufacturing everything in-house by 2021. For more on Kitsbow’s Made in the USA approach read more here, and if you are interested in working in the new location check for jobs here.
Maxxis Tires has just launched its own video series titled Intersections featuring brand ambassador Bryce Shirbach as he travels and visits trail networks. Episode 1 takes viewers to Roanoke, VA and you can watch it right here. Stay tuned for more episodes in the coming weeks.
In other trail news, Colorado Mountain Bike Association (COMBA) held an opening celebration for The Sluice aka Segment 4 on Wednesday, August 21, with more than 100 riders in attendance. Part of the new Floyd Hill Open Space Trail System, The Sluice is a 1.3-mile bike-only directional downhill trail just 30 minutes from downtown Denver. Built specifically for bikes on public lands in Clear Creek County, the trail is the first of its kind on Colorado’s Front Range, an area encompassing the foothills west of Denver.
Outspoken mountain bikers showed up to county planning meetings over the last two years to voice support for a directional bike-only trail, and individual contributions were significant in the more than $38,000 COMBA crowdsourced for the design and build of The Sluice. And on August 21, the turnout for opening night far exceeded expectations. Get a little taste of the trail right here.
The end of the summer not only means some perfect trail conditions on the east coast but it also means the beginning of Cyclocross season and Deschutes Brewing has special beer for this season, the HandUp IPA. HandUp is a cyclocross inspired IPA that was brewed to honor the memory of Colby Nightingale, a Deschutes co-owner and cyclocross team member, who passed from Pancreatic Cancer in 2018. This beer will enter Deschutes Brewery’s mainstay IPA lineup, and at 65 IBUs, 6.5% abv and is sure to be a favorite of adventurers everywhere. $1 per barrel from all nationwide Handup IPA sales will be donated to non-profit organizations that support pancreatic cancer research. Find out more on www.deschutesbrewery.com.
Whilst we are on the subject of cyclocross, our friend Bill Schieken of InTheCrossHairs is back from a long season of chasing mountain bikes around with the first-ever North American Cyclocross Heat-Check as we head into the first official race weekend of the season. If you enjoy ‘cross racing be sure to stay tapped into CX Hairs all season long.
That’s the dirt for this week, stay tuned next week as we will have daily coverage from the World Cup at Snowshoe Mountain and much more.