By Andrew Mitchell
Fat tire fanatics will be able to put their skills to the test next week with the return of the annual Phat Wednesday downhill race series in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park.
This six-race series is jointly hosted by Whistler-Blackcomb and the Whistler Off-Road Cycling Association (WORCA), with races taking place on different courses throughout the season. An average of 90 riders took part in each race last year, and organizers are hoping the number of participants increases again this year.
While the timing gear is out and the top guys and girls will be battling it out to see who can get to the bottom fastest, recreational riders are also welcome to come out, test their skills, and socialize with other riders.
The first race of the season is on Wednesday, June 20. As usual, the first course will be a run down the B-Line trail. Courses will change each week, getting progressively more challenging for riders that are new to the sport.
Future races are July 4, July 11, August 8, August 22, and August 29.
All participants will need to purchase WORCA memberships to take part. The cost is $40 and forms are available at sign-on starting at 5:30 p.m. at the base of the mountain. There is also a $2 entry fee, with all the money going to the fastest riders.
All participants will get food and beverages for taking part, as well as a chance to win draw prizes like SRAM X-9 drive trains, WTB gear and certificates from Garbanzo Bike and Bean.
Races get underway at 6:15 p.m., and awards and prizes will be presented at the GLC afterparty.
Non-WORCA members are advised to get to the sign-on early for the first few races to give themselves time to register and still get up to the start gate. A membership in WORCA will allow racers to take part in Thursday night Loonie races, WORCA camps and clinics, and in special weekend events like the Ken Quon Memorial “Ride On” and West Side Wheel Up.