The Cheakamus Challenge is going to give riders more sweet trail to ride than ever with the 2005 edition.
Riders will be finishing for the first time in Whistlers Creekside, right out front of Dustys after racing the more than 70 kilometres and 2,000 metres of climbing from the start in Squamish.
Race Director, Grant Lamont has been toying with the idea for about 10 years and now that there seems to be solid support in the area it is a natural fit. With the amount of labour and equipment needed to put on a safe and professional event, while keeping retailers happy, the energy was better spent elsewear.
"The Cheakamus is a classic and so is Creekside," said Lamont. "We are psyched to be finishing in Classic Whistler with over 8 km of additional singletrack for 2005. The ease of parking and the magnificent selection of trails from Function to Creekside give great options that allow us to eliminate the un-rideable and dangerous sections of the Microwave climb and Northwest Passage.
"With the popularity of the bike park it makes sense from a safety aspect, as well, to separate the race from the DH crowd, as there is nothing worse than being 5 hours into a race with guys taking air around you."
The race will take the following route.
Riders will enter Trash and do the complete loop off of the Dump Hill Climb. Once out of Trash they will climb up the west main road to the junction with the Ridge Trail where riders will then be treated to a 350 m. elevation gain in 2.7 km. Once at the Loggers Lake Gate you will bear right and take the trail which climbs up to the Black Tusk Road, where riders turn right and head down the road to then go down Riverside Trail all the way to the landfill bridge over the Cheakamus. Once across the bridge riders will then go up the Far Side Trail and connect with the High Trail that will lead them up the mid-Microwave climb before heading down Tunnel Vision.
Once out of the complete Tunnel Vision riders will then climb up the paved Kadenwood climb and then descend down Big Timber to the finish at Dustys.
There will be a special treat for the finish as usual.
This years mens and womens winners will receive special pots fired and designed by Whistlers Vincent Massey, one of the founders of WORCA.
The Cheakamus Challenge starts at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 24 th at the Squamish Airport.
A half-distance event is also being offered this year. It starts at Cal-Cheak at noon and finishes at Dustys.
You can sign up online at www.cheakamuschallenge.com