Gran Fondo registration now online

Participants can now sign up to the first-ever cycling event.

Registration is now online for the  first annual Kootenay Rockies Gran Fondo cycling event and the applications are already starting to trickle in.

Glenn Dobie, the chair of the Gran Fondo event, said roughly a dozen names have trickled in, and expects the 500 spots to fill up by the end of early registration at the end of June.

“We wanted it to appeal to every type of cyclist,” said Dobie. “The 50km route appeals to people who want to go for a nice ride with family or friends then have a nice meal afterwards at St. Eugene.”

The event—the first of it’s kind in the East Kootenays—is billed as a ride, not a race. Participants have the option of signing up to 50-, 100-, and 150-kilometre courses around Cranbrook and Kimberley, with the St. Eugene Golf Resort and Casino as the start and end point.

Dobie said he hopes the event adds to others in the region, such as the Wasa Triathlon, Round the Mountain and Six in the Stix.

“We wanted it to appeal to every type of cyclist,” Dobie said.  “The 50km route appeals to people who want to go for a nice ride with family or friends then have a nice meal afterwards at St. Eugene.”

The routes will be clearly marked, and aid stations will be positioned throughout all three courses for riders to stock up on nutrition and water, as well as troubleshoot any mechanical or medical issues that crop up.

Dobie and the organizing committee—namely the Cranbrook Sunrise Rotary Club—are hoping to take proceeds raised from the event and reinvest it back into community initiatives and projects.

“Funds raised by the event will be used to enhance and maintain the Rails to Trails system as well as support other local community service projects,” said Dobie.

The event is being sponsored by the St. Eugene Golf Resort and Casino, along with Western Financial Group. Anyone interested in registering for the event can visit the website at www.krgf.ca.