Posted by Editoress on 05/15/12
Plans are underway to bring a second national-level mountain bike race to Ontario in 2013. Pulse Racing, organizer of the annual Canada Cup at Hardwood Ski & Bike near Barrie, is already scheduled to host the National mountain bike championships in 2013 and 2014. Company principal Glen Meeuwisse has submitted a bid to the Canadian Cycling Association to organize a Canada Cup cross-country race one week before the 2013 Nationals. If the application is successful, the event will take place at the Naughton Trails, just west of Sudbury, on the weekend of July 13th and 14th.
“We would like to keep a Canada Cup in Ontario,” explains Meeuwisse. “But I was looking around for a different kind of venue.” While in Sudbury for the 2010 Ontario Summer Games, Meeuwisse was impressed both by the course possibilities and the community spirit.
“The trails are spectacular, with the potential to be very technical. The club is really behind it, as is the city and the tourism officials. There is tons of energy for this event.”
The club in question is the Walden Mountain Bike Club, led by president Rob St. Marseille, a driving force for mountain biking in the area. “Rob St. Marseille has been great at organizing a lot of mountain biking in Sudbury and really leading that charge,” says Adam Ruppel of Chico Racing, organizer of the Pastiglas Ontario Cup mountain bike series.
Riders will get a chance to experience the Naughton Trails at the Ontario Cup race on July 8th. “Rob’s been pestering us to bring an O-Cup race up to Sudbury for years,” admits Ruppel. “Pestering is the wrong word, but he’s been on us and he’s really done an amazing job with the course up there and organization levels and everything else, so it makes sense that with Sudbury now being a hotbed of mountain biking in Ontario because of Rob that we bring an O-Cup up there.”
With two Ontario Cup races in the books already, Ruppel is pleased with how the season has started. “I believe we’re still North America’s biggest provincial or state series, so that’s saying good things about the state of mountain biking in Ontario for sure. It’s nice to see that we’re getting a really good turnout for our new master sport women 50+ category. It looks like there’s quite a few women out racing and enjoying it. We're also getting really positive youth categories."
Report by Emil van Dijk
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