After the pomp and circumstance of the fifth anniversary of the NIMBY Fifty last year, organizers are getting set to stage the race once again this year.
On May 30, cross-country riders will once again tackle the approximately 40-kilometre course near Pemberton.
For its fifth installment last year, a special corral was created for riders who posted impressive results the previous time around (under two hours and 45 minutes for men and three hours and 15 minutes for women) to start just behind the pro elite riders.
However, there was a change to the course last year that bumped riders' times up and allowed fewer to qualify for the platinum status. Organizer Terry Evans said that is being taking into consideration this year and riders from last year would retroactively be granted platinum status. The standards for both divisions were bumped up by 10 minutes for last year's race and this year's race. Sixty-two men's riders and 14 women's riders achieved the standard under the new definitions.
"Last year, we added some new trails to the course and took out another trail because there was some construction. It was one of the final descents on the course," he said. "We rebuilt the trail and connected up to another descent. That added anywhere between seven and 15 minutes on average.
"At the end of the race, when you've finished all the single tracks, instead of taking the highway back to the farm, one of the landowners has been kind enough to allow us to use the gravel path along the edge of their property. That would cut out all of the pavement (sections) that you have to ride back to the farm."
Riders still take to the highway at the start of the ride, though, as it allows for a mass start, but competitors are less interested in riding it after a long day of pedalling. Evans added the course this year would be similar to the one from last year.
"We've basically only tweaked the course by eliminating the very small amounts of gravel road that were in the course," he said.
Each platinum rider also receives a custom stem cap made by Chromag and North Shore Billet upon returning the following year.
"It's fairly typical of all previous years, the last three years which we've sold out at 420," he said. "Right now, we're just over 60-per-cent full and typically that's been the case about two weeks out from the race. In the last two weeks, literally 40 per cent of people sign up."
Evans explained that though the race has a fair bit of turnover in terms of its competitors, there are always people looking to snap up the spots.
"Each year, generally about 50 per cent of people in the race have done it before and 50 per cent have never done it," he said. "If we look at the 60 per cent of people who have signed up right now, it's about that percentage."
With a big blowout for the fifth edition last year, Evans is excited to see the race progress in the future.
"The race still drawing. People are still talking about and interested in it. It's still regarded as one of the toughest and most technical (cross-country) races in B.C., if not Canada," he said.
For more information or to register, visit www.nimbyfifty.com.
Evans added the event is also seeking volunteers. Those interested in taking part can fill out the form on the website's contact section or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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