Posted by Editoress on 07/9/12
2nd annual Valley First Granfondo Axel Merckx Okanagan comes to a successful close
More than 2,500 riders braved 34°C heat in the South Okanagan to ride the second edition of the Valley First Granfondo Axel Merckx Okanagan on Sunday. The event – in its second year – hosted a record number of riders, many of whom crossed the finish line with smiles and exhausted looks on their face.
Trevor Gunderson from Calgary, Alberta won the finishing sprint to cross the line first overall in the Granfondo (160 km) division in a time of 4 hours and 12 minutes, while North Vancouver’s Ann Yew crossed the line in 4 hours and 27 minutes to become the first female finisher in the Granfondo category.
Five-time Tour de France winner and cycling legend, Eddy Merckx, completed the Mediofondo (92 km) route in a time of 2 hours and 54 minutes. Full results in the Cortofondo, Mediofondo and Granfondo categories are available online at: http://www.raceheadquarters.com/results/rhqResultsOther.php?nYear=2012#jul
As the event comes to a successful close, extra non-perishable food and bottle refunds will be donated to the Feed the Valley initiative – a not-for-profit effort to end hunger in the Okanagan valley. As well, the event raised significant funds for the Axel Merckx Youth Development Foundation – a program develop Canada’s next great cyclists.
“I’m thrilled everyone had a great time under very hot conditions,” said Axel Merckx, who finished the Granfondo route in a time of 4 hours and 39 minutes. “The sponsors and volunteers supported this ride with absolute grace and generosity and for that we thank them.”
Registration for the 2013 event won’t open until this September. Organizers wish to also thank the residents and businesses of the South Okanagan, as well as Valley First and the City of Penticton for their tremendous support.
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