By Rob Wilton / RJMedia.tech
Hatzic was the location for the 2021 BC Provincial UCI Road Race Championships on Sunday (Aug. 15).
Hundreds of competitors showed up to brave the scorching heat and the grueling climbs for a chance to pull on a Provincial Champion jersey.
Women, Men, Elites, Juniors and Masters began their grind through the valley at about 12:30 p.m. in staggered groups.
For the Elite men, it was 130 kms of sweat, while the Elite women pounded out 90 kms of leg burning climbs and scary, fast, twisty rural descents.
A rouge pothole claimed one riders balance and a pound of flesh once he finished sliding across the hot pavement.
Another rider’s progress was halted when a refreshment cup tangled with his rear sprockets. A witness said he had to remove the wheel to clear the obstruction, costing him valuable time.
One of the most dramatic events occurred when Red Truck Racing’s Alex Murison (Vancouver) cramped up within 50 metres of the brutal uphill finish line.
Alex came off his race bike in agony as his calf muscles balled up in knots. Under duress but responding to spectators cheering him on, he hobbled on foot, pushing his bike to a 2nd place finish before collapsing in the ditch just eighteen seconds before 3rd place finisher Evan Russel (TAG Cycling).
Sam Morris (Mighty Cycling) won the Elite Men’s Cat 1/2/3 category with a time of 3:00:25
TAG cycling had an outstanding day, managing four podiums; including a one-two finish in the U23 men’s class with times of 3:01:11 and 3:01:12.
Out of the 262 riders who began the race, 104 fell victim to the valley and did not finish.
The event would not have been possible without the great volunteers and others who love and continue to support cycling in B.C.
Local Ride Racing has organized seven other races this year with five still to go.
– Follow Rob Wilton on Instagram: @rjmedia.tech