A fabulous Fondo fiesta

Organizers celebrate another successful event, thank volunteers and sponsors.

A cyclist flashes the thumbs up during the ride on Saturday out at the Kootenay Rockies Gran Fondo.

A cyclist flashes the thumbs up during the ride on Saturday out at the Kootenay Rockies Gran Fondo.

It was another successful weekend out on the Kootenay Rockies Gran Fondo courses as riders broke out the bicycles and hit the local roads, highways and trails.

With over 360 riders from Cranbrook, Kimberley and beyond, such as Alberta and the northwestern U.S., cyclists took on three courses differing in length on Saturday morning, starting and finishing at the St. Eugene Golf Resort and Casino.

The event featured three courses—Piccilo (58 km), Medio (102 km) and Gran (152 km), along with a kids fondo on Sunday with some shorter, more manageable distances.

“I think the reception from the cyclists, similar from the past, was deeper or richer, certainly from those cyclists who traveled from Seattle, Victoria, Calgary who were very appreciative of the warm welcome from volunteers and the St. Eugene resort,” said Glenn Dobie, the chairperson of the event.

“The day went as well as the picture-perfect weather. Everything matched the blue sky, sunshine, 25-degrees and I think that was just the backdrop to everything that went just as well.”

Though the Gran Fondo is marketed as a ride, not a race, the fastest completion time for the longest course came in at 3h:55m.

“That’s an extraordinary feat of athleticism,” Dobie noted.

In addition to the Gran Fondo event itself, there was also a Ride the Runway event the night before out at the Canadian Rockies International Airport. Thought it was a smaller event, cyclists were pleased with riding the two-kilometre loops on the runway, with prizes donated by Hot Shots Cafe and Pacific Coastal Airlines.

After the Gran Fondo, roughly 30 young ones got into the Kids Fondo, which was a big hit for the children and parents alike, said Dobie.

“It was a smaller number, but the kids who were there and the parents who were there had just a blast. It really was a joy to see their smiling faces on their bikes and all of that,” said Dobie.

A few notable awards include the King and Queen of the Mountain—the rider with the fastest time up the Fort Steele hill. For the men’s category, Pat Klassen took the top open time at 4:03, while Jane McCurdy had the top time of 4:38 on the women’s side.

The Team Spirit Award went to a local group of riders known as the Jaffray Rebels.

“They really exemplified the spirit,” Dobie said. “One of their cyclists passed a cyclists who had a mechanical problem—a flat tire—stopped, went back and helped him fix the tire and get him back on his bike, then cycled on to catch up his teammates.

“That was really, really quite neat and there are a number of father and mother and older kids in the group, so they were 11-strong and they’re looking forward to coming back next year with a bigger team.”

Money raised will go back into ongoing maintenance of the Rails 2 Trails network and another community project to be determined.

“There’s an annual contribution to Rails 2 Trails and the Paint the Train project is now finished, so Rotary is now in the process of identifying another major local project and we’ll go through a process to select what we think is best for the city and a lot of the funds will go towards that,” Dobie said.

Dobie would like to acknowledge the support of the Cranbrook Sunrise Rotary Club and other local service groups and recognize all local businesses who sponsored or provided in-kind donations to the event.

 

Just Posted

Kimberley Search and Rescue were able to quickly respond to a call for service and transport an injured mountain biker to East Kootenay Regional Hospital over the weekend. Kimberley SAR file photo.
Kimberley Search and Rescue respond to injured mountain biker on Bootleg Mountain

Kimberley Search and Rescue responded to a call for service this past… Continue reading

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

City of Cranbrook, Ktunaxa Nation to host flag ceremony on National Indigenous Peoples Day. (Corey Bullock file)
City of Cranbrook, Ktunaxa Nation hosting flag ceremony on National Indigenous Peoples Day

A temporary road closure and speed limit reduction will be in effect during the ceremony

A tent housing a mobile vaccination clinic. (Interior Health/Contributed)
Over 5K jabbed at Interior Health mobile COVID-19 vaccine clinics

The clinics have made stops in more than 40 communities since launching last week

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interior Health COVID-19 cases falling slower than the rest of B.C.

More than a third of provincial cases announced Thursday came from the Interior

Cranbrook Arts has opened the doors of their  new gallery space to the public with their inaugural exhibit, Kootenay’s Best.
‘Kootenay’s Best’ opens Cranbrook Arts’ new gallery

This exhibit has been in the works for the past several months and features the work of more than 50 emerging and established artists from across the Kootenays

Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto and IOC President Thomas Bach, on a screen, speak during a five=party online meeting at Harumi Island Triton Square Tower Y in Tokyo Monday, June 21, 2021. The Tokyo Olympics will allow some local fans to attend when the games open in just over a month, Tokyo organizing committee officials and the IOC said on Monday. (Rodrigo Reyes Marin/Pool Photo via AP)
Tokyo Olympics to allow Japanese fans only, with strict limits

Organizers set a limit of 50% capacity — up to a maximum of 10,000 fans

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Pictured are Tyler McNaughton and Sacha Bentall. The husband and wife duo owns and operates Cutter Ranch in Fort Steele. (Zoe Ferguson Photo)
Farm Life: Where food comes from

A chat with Cutter Ranch

A portion of the George Road wildfire burns near Lytton, B.C. in this Friday, June 18, 2021 handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, BC Wildfire Service *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Blaze near Lytton spread across steep terrain, says BC Wildfire Service

Fire began Wednesday and is suspected to be human-caused, but remains under investigation

Blair Lebsack, owner of RGE RD restaurant, poses for a portrait in the dining room, in Edmonton, Friday, June 18, 2021. Canadian restaurants are having to find ways to deal with the rising cost of food. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Canadian restaurateurs grapple with rising food costs, menu prices expected to rise

Restaurants are a low margin industry, so there’s not a lot of room to work in additional costs

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
Fort St. John man arrested after allegedly inviting sexual touching from children

Two children reported the incident to a trusted adult right away

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

Most Read