By Andrew Mitchell
While there’s no shortage of mountain bike races and rides on the West Coast, the region has never hosted a true epic race on the scale of the TransAlp Challenge or TransRockies Challenge — a glaring omission given that the West Coast of B.C. is the epicentre for riding in Canada, and one of the world’s leading mountain bike destinations.
That will change next summer with the hosting of the first ever Seven Bike Race, a seven-day stage race from Victoria to the Sunshine Coast to Whistler. The first year will be limited to just 150 teams of two, following a route that consists of sections of road, doubletrack and singletrack. The exact route has not been confirmed, but could be up to 550 km in length.
The course is being designed by Andreas Hestler, a three-time winner of the TransRockies who divides his time between Whistler and Vancouver.
“Out of the gate this event is shaping up to be one of the most exciting multi-day mountain bike stage races on the planet,” he said. “It will emphasize all that is great about the coast of British Columbia — the hospitable people, the dramatic landscape, the adventure, and, of course, the very best mountain biking in the world.”
The race will get underway in Victoria on Canada Day, July 1, and finish in Whistler on July 7 — which also happens to be 7/7/07.
Race registration will open on Jan. 1, 2007. Although prices have yet to be set, organizers say it will be on par with four other epic races.
Basic information on the race is available online at www.sevenbikerace.com.