Road racing is making a return to Mission after a near 20-year absence.
Cycling fans across the region are gearing up for the May 15 event, which will see competitive racers throw a leg over their bicycles for a 5.5 km course that has its start/finish at the Sports Park on Kenney Road.
“This is a wickedly steep, wickedly fast course,” said Geoff Oram, one of the race directors, and member of Phoenix Velo Cycling Club, who noted each lap will see cyclists climbing 500 feet.
The male Category 1 and 2 competitors will do 15 laps, while the women will complete 12.
The course runs long Kenney to Israel Avenue, up Nelson Street to Tyler Street, then back south into a sharp right-hander up Wren, back to the Sports Park.
“It’s a 14 per cent grade up Wren,” said Bruce Wenting, co-race director and owner of Mission’s Wenting’s Cycle and Mountain Shop. “[The racers] will be flat out to stop and to straight up [Wren]. This breaks up the race quite severely.
“It’ll be very exciting.”
The District of Mission has approved the Tyler Street road closure for race day, and also heard about Phoenix Velo’s plan to hold another race June 12 at municipal hall.
This 4.4 km course leaves the hall westward along Dewdney Trunk Road, heading north at the first intersection, then east along Ferndale Avenue until it meets up with Stave Lake Road. Racers proceed south on Stave until they are back at the hall.
The event will be held under the auspices of the B.C. Masters Cycling Association, which is for competitors over 30 years old. For more information on the races and the cycling club, visit phoenixvelo.com, or visit its Facebook page.