Ice Bike Races a slick event

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Annual competition is this Saturday at Evergreen Lake

By Stephanie DeCamp

You don’t have to be a bicycle enthusiast to want to get in on this icy tradition.

The third annual Ice Bike Race on Evergreen Lake will be Saturday, Jan. 25, and the event promises not just a race over the frozen waters, but cash prizes and refreshments including pizza and barbecue afterward. Registration starts at 8 a.m., and the races begin at 9.

The race is sponsored each year by the Evergreen Park and Recreation District, which awards cash prizes to the top three male and female cyclists in the advanced category, and other prizes to the top three in the amateur category.

The race will begin and end at the Evergreen Lake House, race director Kendra Hinkson said, and all skill levels are welcome. In past years, about two dozen people participated, and Hinkson is hoping for 40 competitors this year.

The race course involves land, ice and various obstacles, with riders making multiple loops on and around the lake. Amateurs ride for 30 minutes, and advanced riders ride for 45 minutes.

Racers must wear helmets, and toe spikes and studded tires are highly recommended. Studded, spiked tires are mandatory for competitors ages 15 and under. Most competitors use fatbikes, which have 4-inch-wide tires, or regular bikes with spiked tires, Hinkson said.

Riders might want to wear some padding, too, since combining ice and wheels usually means some spills.

“It’s funny to watch because people are riding along, and the ice catches them the wrong way, and they’re down on the ground,” Hinkson said. “It’s all about having fun. Some people take it seriously, but some are coming out to do something different.”

Hinkson said there aren’t many ice bike races like this one in the area.

“We have the opportunity to offer it because of our lake,” she said. “It’s just so different than what others can offer.”

The after-race party is at Beau Jo’s Pizza in downtown Evergreen, and barbecue will be provided by Up in Smoke Barbecue.

The race is sponsored by Yeti Cycles, Evergreen Bicycle Outfitters, Tivoli Beer, Red Bull, Beau Jo’s Pizza and Team Evergreen.

To participate …

Register online until 5 p.m. Jan. 24 for a $25 pass that includes beer and pizza at the after-party at Beau Jo’s. Registration the day of the event costs $30 and begins at 8 a.m., with the race starting at 9 a.m. Register online at tinyurl.com/ovg2q7a.