July 2017 - MOUNTAIN BIKING & TRAIL RUNNING
Churney Gurney & ADK 80K
Race Festivals for Competition and Fun
By Darryl Caron
You can mix up the dirt in August at two super mountain bike races, both with trail running races, and each will have a festival-like atmosphere for the entire family!
The fourth annual Churney Gurney Trail Run & Mountain Bike Race – now a two-day festival – will be held on August 5-6 at Gurney Lane Recreation Park (near Exit 20) in Queensbury.
On Saturday, there will be a new Churney Gurney Five-Mile Trail Running Race at 9am, followed by mountain bike demos, scheduled group rides, and games and contests for the entire family. This is a great course that will showcase many of the Gurney Lane trails, including lots of singletrack and ups and downs.
On Sunday, the Churney Gurney Mountain Bike Races – now part of the NYS Mountain Bike Race Series – with 9am start for Category 2 and 3 (two minutes between age groups), and 11am start for Category 1 and Open/Pro divisions. There will also be fat bike, single-speed and unicycle categories. The course will have machine and hand built flow singletrack trails with rollers, banks, drops and rocks, with distances covering 6, 12 or 18 miles depending on the category. Mountain bike demos will be available from 9am-3pm and free kids’ mountain bike races at 1pm.
Churney Gurney grew out of Bob and Heidi Underwood’s love of mountain biking and running, and the need to fundraise for their Under the Woods Foundation’s Summer Camp for children on the autism spectrum. Their goal is to provide a true outdoor summer camp experience for these kids. Camp Under the Woods is in its 10th year and it would not be possible without support from fundraising.
Bike demos from Grey Ghost Bicycles and other local shops include Niner, Cannondale, Felt and more. Gurney Lane offers a swimming pool with day passes available (racers swim free), playground, fishing pond, hiking/walking trails, and a large picnic area. The family-friendly festival will also include music, barbeque, food/drink vendor and Common Roots beer, so come out to enjoy the park. For more info and to register, go to churneygurney.com.
The fifth annual ADK 80K Race Weekend on August 26-27, with trail running and mountain biking races and relays, will take place at the High Peaks Mountain Bike Center at Mt. Van Hoevenberg in Lake Placid.
On Saturday at 5:30am, the ADK 80K Trail Running Races being contested are 80K and 50K solo ultra marathons, and an 80K relay with two or four runners per team. The 20K loop course makes it ideal for first-time ultra runners.
On Sunday at 8am, the ADK 80K Mountain Bike Races are 80K and 40K solo mountain bike races with separate divisions for cyclocross and fat bikes (tires over 3” wide), and an 80K relay with two or four riders per team.
The races are on 20K loops on and in between the trails used for the 1980 Winter Olympics. The off-road course is a 50/50 mix of singletrack and double-track (cross-country ski) trails with just over 1,000’ of climbing per lap. The figure-eight layout has competitors coming through the race village twice per lap, allowing for refueling and cheering. There are also water/energy-gel stations on each half of the lap, so you hit them at 4.5K, 6.5K, 14K and 16.5K. The 50K run will complete two laps, then the first half of the lap to finish. In the race village, you can enjoy the Adirondacks with barbecue, beverages, bonfire, free kids races, music and great views.
If you’re tough enough for an Adirondack challenge – 40K run on Saturday and 40K bike on Sunday – sign up for the ADK 80K Ultra Duathlon! For details and to register, visit adk80k.com.
There you go, two homegrown bike and run festivals in our backyard… Signup, train as needed, bring the family/friends, and make summer memories!