“Best of Both” Race Will Have Mountain Bikers Competing Against Road and Gravel Riders
Bend, Oregon, June 19–20
Here’s an event that could be fun. Promoter Dom Phipps is putting on an event near Bend, Oregon, on June 19th and 20th that will have road, mountain, and gravel bike racers competing against each other. They will race on a three-section course that is made up of 52 miles of paved roads, 17 miles of gravel and dual-track dirt, and 18 miles of singletrack.
Racers can compete alone or in teams, with both men’s and women’s categories. Riders can complete the whole course on one bike (road, mountain, or gravel) or change bikes for the different sections. The race will start and end on Saturday, June 19th.
A shorter “recovery” race, the Mixed Surface Showdown, will be held the next day, on Sunday, June 20th. In that competition, riders must use only one bike for the whole race. The course will offer a mix of road, gravel, and singletrack sections. Racers can use a mountain bike, a road bike, a cyclocross bike, a fat bike, an adventure bike, or any other bike that is allowed by the rules (we haven’t heard whether electric bikes will be allowed, but we’re pretty sure they’d be in a class of their own if they were).
Notice that only 50 men and 50 women are allowed in the “Single Steed” races on Saturday, whose riders will have to use only one bike for the race. Another 50 men and 50 women are allowed in the “Transition Races” on Saturday, for riders who want to change bikes to better suit the different stages. The “Team Relays” will have teams of two or three riders per team, and there will be room for a total of 100 team-relay riders on Saturday.
This sounds like it could be a fun event.
Here’s the announcement from the race promoter:
SATURDAY JUNE 19TH
THE BEST OF BOTH
“The Best of Both” course is situated to the west of Bend, Oregon, on classic northwestern terrain. Surrounded by snow-capped mountains and volcanoes, the views are breathtaking, and the event experience is totally unique. Here we lay out some highlights and stats.
THE TRANSITION AREA IS SITUATED WITHIN EDISON BUTTE SNOW PARK AROUND 16-MILES FROM THE START / FINISH AREA. BIKES AND EQUIPMENT MUST BE SITUATED WITHIN THE TRANSITION AREA BETWEEN 7 AM AND 8:45 AM ON RACE DAY MORNING – SATURDAY JUNE 19TH.
Leg 1 – Gravel
From a mass-start at the Seventh Mountain Resort, riders head onto the first leg of the course over the road, gravel, and dirt dual-track for approximately 17-miles. The surface continuously changes and evolves as riders climb through dense pine forests and summit at 5510 feet. This element of the course perfectly suits gravel and adventure bikes, although CX bikes and road bikes with wider tires are also an option.
Distance – 17-Miles
Vertical Ascent – Approximately 1,500 feet.
T1 – At the Edison snow park Transition Point, Relay Riders hand off to teammates, Transition racers switch to Road or TT bikes, and Single Steed racers cross the timing mat and push on.
Riders exit Transition and descend on the road towards Sun River. After approximately 6-miles, a right turn puts riders onto a paved forestry road, and over the Three-Trappers Climb before reaching the Cascade Lakes Highway. For 25-miles, the course weaves through some of the most beautiful panoramic scenery in the region, dotted with lakes and volcanic debris. At mile-58, the 1,000-foot Sparks Grade climb leads to the paved summit of Mount Bachelor at 6,500 feet. Once over the top, riders descend and turn right and back to Transition at Edison Butte snowpark.
Distance – 52 -Miles
Vertical Ascent – Approximately 3,000 feet
T2 – Relay Riders handoff to teammates, Transition racers switch back to trail-friendly bikes, and Single Steed racers cross the timing mat and push onto the third and final leg back to the finish.
Riders climb into a legendary local trail – Dina Moe Humm and experience some of the best single-track in the region. After 15-miles, riders reach the rollercoaster – Tylers Traverse – a trail that rises and descends through Ponderosa Pine tunnels and meets the last passage of single-track – Catch and Release – before crossing back into the venue and the finish line. Grab a beer from our hand up station as you roll in and congratulate yourself for finishing on the most unique endurance bike race in North America.
Distance – 17 -Miles
Vertical Ascent – Approximately 1,000 feet
After Saturday’s race is completed, riders can come back and race another event on Sunday: the Mixed Surface Showdown. Here’s the information on that event:
SUNDAY JUNE 30TH
THE MIXED SURFACE SHOWDOWN
ROAD / SINGLE-TRACK / DOUBLE-TRACK / GRAVEL
New for 2021, The Mixed Surface Showdown is our Day-2 race. At approximately 27- miles this looks like a cinch of a recovery ride but do not underestimate this unique challenge. Firstly the race allows the use of only one bike – a gravel rig, CX Bike, rigid and full-bounce mountain bikes, fat tire, all-road, and adventure bikes are all welcome, but remember, this terrain is super-diverse. You can expect double-track fire roads – both ascending, and descending; genuine bermed-out singletrack; PNW gravel, and chip sealed forestry pavement —evolving with little warning from fast and grippy, to dusty and loose. It’s highly likely that some bike carry will be required.
COURSE REVEAL IN MARCH 2021
For more information, go to www.racethebestofboth.com