Festival kicks off the Canada Cup XCO MTB and Island Cup Enduro Series and offers events & activities for all ages and abilities.
Langford, BC - Online registration is now open for the 3rd annual Bear Mountain Bike Festival presented by the City of Langford and Tourism Victoria on March 30 – March 31. This year’s festival will bring world-class Cross-Country mountain bike racing to the Bear Mountain Resort Area of Langford, BC. The event will also feature Enduro racing for mountain bikers of all ages & abilities as well as special activities for kids. Top industry brands will showcase new products including e-Bikes that will be available for demonstration. The highlight event of the festival will continue to be the UCI C1 Canada Cup MTB Race powered by Powerade on March 30, featuring 3-Time World Champion and 2016 Rio Olympic bronze medalist, Catharine Pendrel (Clif Pro Team).
As the 2-Time defending Bear Mountain Canada Cup event champion, Pendrel is eager to get the racing started after a challenging 2018 season due to injury, “I always look forward to the Bear Mountain Canada Cup. It’s an excellent chance to test our early season form on a really fun track.” Said Catharine. “It is now extra special as it is one of the few chances I get to race alongside my Pendrel Racing Development team.”
Launched in 2018, Pendrel Racing is a new development platform for young up-and-coming MTB racers who seek to become future Olympians of their own. “This year look out for Emilly Johnston from Cumberland in the junior women’s field and Victoria residents, Elyse Nieuwold and Emily Unterberger in Elite Women.” Explains Catharine, “There is also Holden Jones of Squamish, who after winning the junior category last year at Bear, will make his first U23 appearance this year.”
Another race favorite, reigning Canadian National Champion, Emily Batty (Trek Factory Racing), finished the 2018 season with a bronze medal at the World Mountain Bike Championships and 3rd overall in the World Cup rankings. She will be looking to improve on her 4th place in last year’s Bear Mountain Canada Cup with the goal of taking the top podium step.
Norco Factory’s Haley Smith surprised at Bear Mountain in 2018 with 2nd overall, and was also impressive in her international results with bronze medal at the Commonwealth Games, 6th at the World Championships and top tens at World Cups. ““Victoria is a special place for me, as it’s where I went when I first moved away from to home to pursue my dream of becoming a professional mountain biker. Getting to have a race there, at my home-away-from-home, is a great feeling. Plus, it’s a unique experience getting to race outside in Canada that early in the year - and is an important preparatory step for our early season race campaigns.”
In the Elite Men’s race, defending champion Andrew L’Esperance from Norco Factory Racing will face a tough men’s field from the likes of Leandre Bouchard (BH-Suntour KMC), National Champion Peter Disera (Norco Factory), Felix Burke (Rocky Mountain), and Sean Fincham (Norco Factory). L’Esperance explains his modest expectations with some philosophical reflection, “Of course, the Canada Cup will play into my season to build experience and earn valuable UCI points. Above all my goal is to enjoy this experience of riding and racing my bike and all the great things that go along with this journey.”
Recreational cyclists and enthusiasts of all ages will have the opportunity to race on the same Canada Cup Course as part of the Bear Mountain XC Challenge on March 30. In addition, a new 4-person relay team event will offer a fun and exciting element that will bring out friends and co-workers.
On Sunday March 31, the day will feature the Russ Hay’s BC Cup XC Short Track Race. The event will be a 20-minute race for each race category and will take place on a fast 1km course. Lap prizes or “primes” will be awarded to heighten the excitement and keep the race pace high. There will be race categories for beginner, intermediate, expert, masters, and youth cyclists.
Enduro racers and enthusiasts will hit the trails for the Rocky Mountain Enduro presented by Marty’s Mountain Cycles. New for this year will be an improved single track line on Skirt Mountain in addition to the tried-and-true Bear Mountain’s Flow Trail and Chainsaw Trail. The event will kick off the island Cup Enduro Racing Series and attract participants from across BC.
The weekend would not be complete without something special for the kids. The Oak Bay Bikes Westshore “Kids Bike Day” invites families with kids ages 6-10 to take part in some fun skills training with former Canada Cup Champion and certified coach, Adam Walker from the Cycling Co. Kids will learn the basics of mountain bike riding, try their skills on the obstacle course, and obtain free snacks and prizes as a reward. Entry is free and is capped at 150 kids.
Saturday March 30
Sunday March 31
Russ Hay’s BC Cup XC Short Track
Rocky Mountain Enduro p/b Marty’s Mountain Cycle – Island Cup Enduro #1
Oak Bay Bikes “Kids Bike Day”
About the trails at Bear Mountain:
The Bear Mountain Bike Park, home to the Canadian National Mountain Bike Team, consists of over 10km of west coast inspired single track and flow trails. Built over the past two years in collaboration with the Nature Trail Society, the park is open to all ages and abilities.
For more information and downloads:
Visit the Cycling Canada Website here. http://www.cyclingcanada.ca/sport/mountain-bike/events/type-of-event/canada-cup/auto-draft-4/
Visit the Bear Mountain Bike Festival Website here. www.victoriabikerace.com/bear-mountain
Download Bear Mountain Canada Cup Technical Guide (LINK TO DOWNLOAD)
Registration is now live for all events.
2018 Bear Mountain Canada Cup p/b Powerade <here>.
Oak Bay Bikes “Kids bike Day” (Free Entry!) <here>
Russ Hay's BC Cup Series XC Short Track <here>
Rocky Mountain Enduro p/b MCC - Island Cup Series <here>
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