electrical bike Sisters Stampede mountain bike race set for Sunday | Central Oregon Adventures
The race is on Labor Day weekend this 12 months, not Memorial Day weekend. And there might be no horseback rider main out the racers, and no massive after celebration at 5 Pine Lodge.
Nonetheless, the favored Sisters Stampede mountain bike race might be staged Sunday for the eleventh straight 12 months, in a socially-distanced trend that race organizer Mike Ripley is perfecting this summer time throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ripley mentioned he’s anticipating about 180 mountain bikers — beginning in a time-trial format about 30 to 40 seconds aside — racing for 18 miles within the Peterson Ridge Path space simply south of Sisters. The occasion, postponed from its initially scheduled date of Could 24, usually has about 500 racers.
Ripley wouldn’t disclose the exact begin/end space as spectators are discouraged.
“We don’t need anyone to go on the market, besides the racers,” Ripley mentioned. “We’ll begin out within the woods, do one loop. On the end, we toss them a water bottle. They will go and take a look at their outcomes on-line they usually get the sense of doing one thing regular for the day.
“You continue to get to attach although. That’s the factor that’s being undervalued proper now. There may be nonetheless a connection, and also you do acknowledge individuals who have a masks on. And so they’re comfortable to see you and also you’re comfortable to see them. It’s an attractive factor.”
Face masks have to be worn by riders at any time when they’re inside 2½ bike lengths of one other racer, and the course has been modified from current years, permitting for extra passing areas all through the race.
The Stampede will mark the fifth biking occasion that Ripley has staged in Oregon this summer time, together with the Excessive Cascades 100-mile mountain bike race held west of Bend in mid-July.
“I believe issues have gotten higher since final time we have been round in July,” Ripley mentioned. “There’s no motive, in the event you’re keen to spend the time and put money into the individuals, you can’t produce one thing this 12 months, if individuals wish to do it. That’s the entire thing proper now.”
This Sunday’s Sisters Stampede is not going to embody an extended 27-mile course for extra superior riders because it has up to now. Everybody will journey 18 miles on a route with 950 ft of elevation acquire.
“Some individuals have finished this course in 1 hour and 10 minutes,” Ripley mentioned. “We wished to simply do one course. On this scenario, we simply need individuals to have a superb day on the bike and really feel considerably regular.”
The entire biking occasions that Ripley has organized this 12 months have been in a scaled-down, socially-distanced trend.
“I see placing on racing in a timed trend, a segmented trend, as being a possibility, like something, for individuals to unplug from all of the crap that’s happening,” Ripley mentioned.
The race organizer mentioned one of many greatest challenges this summer time has been the communication with racers main as much as the occasions. Usually, Ripley can deal with the riders in a giant group on a public-address system earlier than the races.
“That’s the toughest factor, is the quantity of communication beforehand, as a result of I can’t get all of them collectively as a bunch proper beforehand,” he mentioned. “That buildup is simply totally different.”
Ripley admitted it has been a clumsy 12 months of staging races, however he’s pushed to carry a way of normalcy to mountain bike racers, and he plans for his occasions to return to regular in 2021.
“Individuals who wish to come are selecting to return,” Ripley mentioned, “and we’re taking each doable security step we will, together with medics on the right track and all of the (COVID-19) measures in place.”