Don Robertson races to third place in the first Twoonie race of the year in May. He took first in the series' fifth race last Wednesday

Don Robertson races to third place in the first Twoonie race of the year in May. He took first in the series' fifth race last Wednesday

Robertson and Bernier take fifth Wednesday Night Race

Don Robertson and Melanie Bernier were winners at the fifth Wednesday Night cross-country mountain bike race of the year in Revelstoke.

By Bart Jarmula, Revelstoke Cycling Association

Wednesday Night Racing presented by Arrow Helicopters resumed last week and 25 racers were keen to get their racing fix again after the short mid-season break.

The five-kilometre course featured gradual climbing up Berm Donor and Toad School as well as fun descents down Dusty Beaver and Buff Enuff. Most riders completed three or four laps within the 90-minute time limit. The uphill finish ensured that riders pushed hard right until the end.

The pace off the start was brisk and after the first lap several riders were within a minute of the leader.

By the second lap a group of three had pulled away as overeager started to suffer. Don Robertson, Jeff Bellis and Brendan MacIntosh rode neck-and-neck at the front until their fourth lap when Don pulled away for the win narrowly beating Jeff to the line.

Robertson’s win means the race series had four different winners in five races.

Unfortunately, Brendan suffered from the dreaded “bonk” and faded on the last lap – I think two hours of riding in the heat earlier in the day may have caught up with him.

Bart Jarmula kept up a steady pace, winning the prime for closest lap times and rounding out the podium in third.

Although the men have had multiple winners this season the women’s field continues to be dominated by Mel Bernier.

Her fifth win of the season required a bit more suffering than usual as she was fighting an illness. Sarah Newton once again finished second. Annie Gornall finished third in her first race of the season – welcome back to Revelstoke Annie!

Thanks to our sponsors (including Valhalla Pure, Skookum, Selkirk Tangiers, Stoke Roasted Coffee) for providing draw prizes. Liz Kozak won the free entry to the Kaslo Sufferfest – I hope you are ready to suffer Liz!

We’ll be giving away one more free entry at the next race. The course for the next race will be posted mid-week. The tentative plan is to have a gravity enduro section (timed downhill) so I expect all the downhill enthusiasts to come out and challenge the XC crowd.

Our last race of the season will be going retro as we’ll be making use of the old XC race loops on Mount Mackenzie. Thanks to Revelstoke Mountain Resort for letting us revive the old trails. As always specific details will be available after the next race but circle the date on your calendar – you won’t want to miss it!