The seventh edition of Vélirium, which will include the 18th edition of the UCI mountain bike World Cup at Mont-Sainte-Anne is just around the corner. Canada's biggest mountain bike festival will be held at Mont-Sainte-Anne, Québec from July 11 to 26.
The following competitions will be held during this year's festival: UCI World Cup, Québec Cups, Vélo Mag Raid, Genuine Innovations Freeride Cup, Yop Tropixs Urban Delirium, and the Shimano Véli-Kidz.
Organizers are using the Vélirium 2009 as preparation for the 2010 Mountain Bike World Championships, which will be hosted in Mont-Sainte-Anne.
"With a CAN$2.4 million budget, the 2009 edition is gearing up to treat the 2,500+ athletes and 60,000 visitors to an extra special event," said Gestev VP Chantal Lachance.
Key races that are part of this year's festival include the Downhill Québec Cup on July 12 and the Vélo Mag Raid cross country race on July 18. In the later, Raphaël Gagné (Lac-Beauport) and Josiane Mathieu (Québec City) will be two racers to watch.
The Genuine Innovations Freeride Cup will also be run during the second weekend of the festival on July 19. Look out for last year's winners Geneviève Larouche (Québec City) and Luc Proulx (Québec City), who should be back to defend their titles.
In the final weekend, amateurs and pros will test their legs in the Cross Country Québec Cup on July 24. Caroline Villeneuve and Gagné won last year's cross country overall and this year Cindy Montambault and Francis Morin are currently leading the standings.
The next day, pro downhillers and four crossers will race the UCI World Cup, and the festival will conclude with the cross country portion of the UCI World Cup on July 26. In addition to an elite international field, Canadians Steve Smith and Claire Buchar (downhill); Hans Lambert (four cross); and Geoff Kabush, Catharine Pendrel, Raphaël Gagné and Marie-Hélène Prémont (cross country) will be looking for good international results at their home World Cup.
Vélirium Schedule 2009
July 11: Belle Gueule Evening
July 12: Downhill Québec Cup
July 15: Monte le Mont Apogée - an amateur climb and descent
July 18: Vélo Mag Raid cross country race, 32km or 72km
July 18: Shimano Véli-Kidz Race
July 19: Genuine Innovations Freeride Cup - race as many kilometres as possible in 5 hours.
July 23: Yop Tropixs Urban Delirium - five athletes will put on a stunt show in the heart of Québec City.
July 24: Cross Country Québec Cup
July 25: UCI World Cup Downhill
July 25: UCI World Cup Four cross
July 26: UCI World Cup Cross Country