“Run what you brung”
Crested Butte Mountain Resort is holding a new randonnee race series this winter. With the popularity and demand from regional and local participants from the COSMIC series, Crested Butte Mountain Resort created a series of its own to satiate the hunger for randonnee racing in the Gunnison Valley.
“We heard from quite a few people who really wanted to expand on the randonnee series here in Crested Butte,” says Crested Butte Mountain Resorts director of operations Ethan Mueller. “With the Elk Mountain Grand Traverse starting here, the amount of people that skin up the mountain every day, and this being part of the real culture of our area, we know it’s a great complement to the season.”
The idea is partly the brainchild of local randonnee racer Bryan Wickenhauser, in cooperation with the COSMIC series organizer Pete Swenson.
There will be race and recreation divisions, and the races are open to all equipment, with no separation between competitors.
“Bring your split board, bring your tele gear, bring your Nordic gear,” says Wickenhauser. “Run what you brung.”
In addition, Wickenhauser says, the races should allow new racers to test the waters and get used to their new equipment, while allowing seasoned veterans to continue working on the finer points of uphill/downhill ski racing.
“Everyone’s joining the green boot club,” says Wickenhauser. “Folks can get used to the new gear. The course will be multiple laps on the friendly front side, where people can practice their transitions.”
Race dates are Thursday, February 26 and Thursday, March 12. Registration is day-of at Thin Air Sports in Mountaineer Square beginning at 4 p.m. The race starts at 4:45 p.m. and the entry fee is $10 per person. There will be specials and awards at Butte 66 after the race, so be there as a supporter or a racer to enjoy the fun.
For more information, contact Thin Air Sports at (970) 349-4045. Special thanks to Bryan Wickenhauser and Team Salomon/Crested Butte for helping make this happen.