Colorado stage race going live in 2009

A new stage race, The Breck Epic, is hopping onto the crowded endurance racing calendar for 2009. The six-stage event will be held in the backcountry surrounding Breckenridge, Colorado, on July 5 – 10. The race's first edition was originally planned for the summer of 2008, but was postponed until next year as organizers worked on land access and sustainability logistics.

The race is adopting a cloverleaf format, whereby each of five stages and a prologue will begin and end in Breckenridge. The model means one host campground and no between-stage transfers. Participants are being told to expect little road riding and minimal stretches of gravel and fireroads. The route, which will change each year, is still being finalized, but racers can expect 235 to 250 miles total.

"The Breck Epic is intended to showcase the unilateral collaboration of local, regional and federal land managers," read a press release about the race. "The trail network here is almost impossible to understand in terms of size and connectivity - it's a rider's paradise."

"All race profits will go to the Breckenridge Open Space and Trails and the Dillon Ranger District of the US Forest Service in the form of a restricted grant, which will dictate the funds be used for the addition of one seasonal trail employee per organization."

Solo categories will be offered, but organizers will review resumes prior to accepting entries. A field limit of approximately 400 riders will be in effect. Racers will compete for US$10,000 in cash plus merchandise.

Although not technically overlapping, the close proximity of the Breck Epic on the calendar to the BC Bike's dates of June 28 to July 4 could force some endurance racers to make a tough decision about which race they will contest.

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