Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Kingston Trophy Marathon Championships, Kingston, Ontario, Canada

Single Track Sunday
Event: Kingston Trophy Marathon Championships
Place: Kingston, Ontario, Canada
Ridden: September, 2015

Click on video to play



As we were looking into places to ride and potentially race over the three day holiday weekend, we decided we wanted something different, something fun, and something that was in a place we had never ridden before. Thus, we decided on the Substance Projects Kingston Trophy Marathon Championships 80K marathon race in Kingston, Ontario.

Yes, some may say we are crazy.  Who decides to pack up their dog, their bikes, and leave after work on Friday evening for a Saturday race that is in another country...we do, OK, so yes, maybe we are crazy.  After sleeping in a Cracker Barrel parking lot over night, we arrived at the race location with ample time to register, get ready, and stretch the legs after traveling.

The race was a two- lap course (half-marathon racers did one lap). Overall the Kingston area does not have the climbs, descents, and rocky sections like we do here in Pennsylvania (which I admit, both Joël and I look forward to those type of terrain features); but what this race did have was so many crazy and interesting course attributes that it kept us guessing, smiling, and on our toes the entire race.

Most, if not all, of the race course was on private property. The first section of the course was tight and twisty.  Many places my bars just made it between the trees. After this came the barn, yup, the race course went through a barn. Pretty cool. After the barn was pump track, and wow, it was impressive. If ridden fast enough, riders could get air over many of the jumps. The course then wove it's way through a marshy area with a beaver dam right next to the course and tons of bridges to ride over; some of them if one went off the side it would be a wet and murky end to your ride.  A rocky section of the course had some nice rock gardens and technical drops and short, steep downhills.  A few short climbs here and there throughout the course added some vertical gain.  

Along the entire course strange objects were seen- old cars and old bikes, a statue of what I would assume was a yeti-like creature, little buildings in the middle of the woods, and signs for route 66 and beaver construction areas.  A very fun course to ride.

If the course was not fun enough, the post-race festivities were top-notch.  Endless hamburgers, salads, and drinks for all racers. A swimming pool for a post-race dip. The podium and award ceremony was pool-side, and winners were expected to jump into the pool from the podium. Racers were allowed to camp at the race site before and after the event. Post race camping included fun conversation and beers around a fire-pit with our new Canadian friends. What a great event!  It was certainly well-worth the travel.

As for results, I was first overall female. Joël was trying to have too much fun on the pump track, and twists and turns and sustained a few crashes; he then decided to take it easy to avoid further disaster but still ended up seventh in the open men category.

- words by Jess
- video by Joël
- extreme fun rolling in the dirt by Cliff