BC Bike Race - British Columbia, Canada
Wallace solo for stage win: top three men within 2 seconds overall.
wins, but women’s overall is shuffled.
finally treated racers to the beauty of the Sunshine Coast under clear skies.
The entire BC Bike Race operation left Campbell River this morning to take the
second BC Ferries trip across the Georgia Strait to the town of Powell River.
Riders were greeted by the sound of the Powell River community ringing cowbells
and cheering their arrival. If that wasn’t enough to lift some damp spirits,
the surrounding trails planted the biggest smiles of the week on racers faces.
coast is accessible only by air or ferry and it’s amazing how well the trails
are maintained despite the small community of riders and trail builders.
started day three from Willingdon Beach in downtown Powell River and
immediately started working their way to the trails of Rolling Thunder. With a
bold solo move five kilometers into today’s 48km race Cory Wallace of Kona
bikes won his first stage in 17 attempts. A three-race veteran and frequent
runner-up, Wallace finally had his day after riding alone in front of the
favorites for over two hours.
first to the bottom of ‘Suicide Creek Trail’, the first Easton Gravity Enduro
section, with a 45 second gap and a lot of trail left. The rain had slowed the
trails down but mud was surprisingly kept at bay. The contrasting brown stitch
of trail winding its way through a bearded electric green forest had to make it
difficult for Wallace or any rider to keep their eye on the trail.
Out of the
last section of trail through the final Gravity Enduro Section, Wallace was
still holding a 45 second gap. The chase group had whittled down to Sheppard,
Kindree, Wicks, Hadley, and the Team of Two Duo from Jamis. Guido Thaler
(Craft-Rocky Mount) had come off the pace in the last singletrack, but his
skills on the BC trails had improved enough to keep him with the lead group for
most of the day. Daniel Gathof of Germany had an off day, with an unfortunate
series of flat tires and lost 40 minutes on the day.
Day four in
Earls Cove is the queen stage of the BC Bike Race and there are sure to be some
motors sputtering as the pace heats up on the 2100 meters of climbing. The
general classification has never been tighter than this year with Wicks,
Kindree, and Sheppard all within two seconds of each other. Hadley, Wallace, and
Carter Hovey are all within nine minutes of each other.
The story of
the women’s epic race is quickly shaping up to be about the fight for the
second and third steps of the podium. Wendy Simms (Kona) has wrapped her fists
around the leaders jersey even though she put the least amount of time on her
competitors today than the previous two.
Due to a
corrected mistake that put Melinda Jackson (Team KiwiRoo) in the wrong category
on the results, she has now taken over second place in the general
classification. A New Zealander on a month trip around the Pacific Rim, Jackson
was third on the day by a second to the rejuvenated Sonya Looney (Topeak
Ergon). Sonya is now 4th on the overall, but Wednesday’s stage is
sure to suit her big-mountain Colorado legs. Alex Robinette (Bicycle Sport Shop
2) isn’t likely to let her 3rd place go easily, so watch her to
fight to the end to stay the first US female solo rider.
Turner and Jason Sager of Jamis Bikes made it two of three today with a
commanding lead, finishing with the lead solo riders. Bad luck struck Rocky
Mountain Factory Team 1 when Colin Kerr cut his hand enough to need stitches at
the end of the stage. Kerr and his partner Greg Day didn’t abandoned the race,
but the injury slowed them enough to fall to third on the day but not change
The Clif Bar
team of the brothers Heitman (Garett and Jake) took 4th, ahead of
the other team of brothers, Nic and Simon Lamond (Lamond Bros). Michael Colwill
and Scott Martin of Team Monz split the two teams for a fifth place on the day
but maintained 4th overall.
accomplished South African stage racer Nic Lemond and his brother Simon "The BC
Bike Race was on our bucket list the moment we heard about it.” "I’ve been to
BC before and I had to come back.”
Duo gets a new stage winner.
dominating ‘Moab Maidens’ who had won the first two days came apart a little
today in the trails of Powell River. Quick to show they could fill the top
spot, Team ‘Mo Crazy’ cut the finish-line first with the Maidens in disorder.
tussle shaping in the woods is between the current third and fourth place. The
‘Canmore Crazy Chicks’ have a mere 47 seconds lead over team ‘Frisky Business’.
It’s a fight for Canadian pride to sit on the last podium spot and with only
three days down and four to go it’s a story yet unwritten.
The BC Bike
Race international field is represented well by Namibian rider Mannie Heimans.
Heimans is an Olympian, former World Cup race and winner of the Trans-Alp, and
also made a long journey to ride the trails of the BC Bike Race. ‘Peiking Man’,
Chad Forrest of China is only a couple minutes up on Canadian Craig
stages of today’s Easton Gravity Enduro were owned by the local North Shore
Olympian Andreas Hestler (Rocky Mountain Bikes). Josh Carlson (Giant) was
second on the first stage but fell back on stage two where Matt Hadley got his
first Gravity Enduro podium.
meters of climbing in 65km the Earls Cove-Sechelt stage is traditionally the
toughest course of the race. After three days of energy sapping wet trails, the
climbing will surely feel as if it’s steeper and longer than years past.
Fireworks will be lit and while some will sparkle bright a couple might fizzle.
It will likely be a day that transforms the general classification as racers
begin to enter the deeper layers of the proverbial ‘Hurt Locker’ or as Dave
Toll says enter the, "Pain Cave”.
Here for full results from the 2012 BC Bike Race