Spin to Win

It’s no hidden secret that we have some very talented cyclists here in Fernie. With our extensive trail network, healthy living vibes and a town full of “go getters” it’s a breeding ground for cyclists of all disciplines; whether they’re racing up, racing down or racing around!

Last summer, while I was out on a ride with fellow cyclist Mike Bragg, a conversation came up about how great it would be if we could bring the town’s talented riders together, in one place, with one jersey. Shortly after, a crew of Fernie racers headed down to Cranbrook for the Six in the Stix endurance race. While at the race, Fernie saw several of its riders step onto podiums. At this point all these riders were racing as independents. While other teams and towns were receiving recognition, Fernie was not. This further cemented our vision on the drive back; Fernie needed a team.

Since then the FMBC Race Team was established with around 40 riders signing up to be a part of this project. Local businesses have come on board to help out with the team’s success including The Guides Hut, Super8, Teck, SOAR, Fernie Physiotherapy, Play it Forward Therapy, RoofTop Coffee Roasters and Fernie Property Care. I’d like to take this moment to thank each and every one of these sponsors for offering their services and helping the FMBC Race Team take shape!

The team has a few objectives. Obviously we want to put Fernie riders onto podiums in several disciplines. Be that XC or Enduro, DH or Cyclo-cross; as long as someone is riding a bike, we will support that ambition. Our fundamental objective, however, is to create an environment in which riders can develop their skills, fitness, and training with other like-minded riders and share their knowledge and experience with one another. It’s often very daunting to go to your first race, but with the support of the team, that won’t be the case. We are striving to promote a strong youth section by creating a fun, athletic environment in which our younger riders can have the ability to learn, push their skills and develop into talented, well-rounded bike riders.

As the snow starts to slowly melt, the efforts of a couple of enthusiastic Fernie riders will start to become more prominent. With several group rides going out through the week at various ability levels – right from the “nobody gets left behind” to the “hang on for as long as you can” rides. Each group or training ride will be led by a senior member of the team, giving every ride a purpose and providing an opportunity for people to learn from every single pedal stroke they make. This is our key objective – for people to continually develop as bike riders.

The race season will start in early May with the first Alberta Cup race then after that it seems there is a race with an FMBC jersey on the start line every weekend; Kooteney Krusher, Salty Dog, Rundle’s Revenge, Lucky 7’s, and Pierre’s Hole to name a few. We are very confident about having a successful first season and look forward to seeing where this project will go. But for now, it’s time to tune up your bikes and get out riding!

Here is one of my favourite training loops.

Destination of the Month - Mushroom Head Figure 8
Distance: 12km
Time: ~ 1.5 hours, test it on Strava
Difficulty: Blue

Starting at the Phat Bastered, climb all the way to the power line then keep pushing through to Mushroom Head. Take Mushroom Head all the way to the bench, where finally you start to descend towards Dem Bones. Continue down Dem Bones and take this moment to catch your breath and lower that heart rate because at the bottom of Dem Bones you’re going to take a sharp right-hander back up Stove. Once at the power line take on some fluids for the final push back up Mushroom. When you’ve made it back to the bench it’s downhill all the way. Finish off Mushroom Head then swing a left onto Red Sonya, rail those berms and gap those jumps all the way out to the road.