Chris Makuch is looking to defend his 2015 championship at Sunday's final Island Cup enduro race.

Chris Makuch is looking to defend his 2015 championship at Sunday's final Island Cup enduro race.

Comox Valley riders in hot pursuit of Island Cup titles

Comox Valley mountain bikers are hoping to be crowned champions at the fifth and final event of the Vancouver Island Cup Enduro Series.

Cowichan Valley Cycling is hosting the Maple Mountain Enduro this Sunday, Oct. 16, and the top finishers will be decided at this race.

Cumberland rider Carter Woods (Dodge City Cycles) is currently leading the Intermediate Men’s category, and Courtenay’s Chris Makuch (Norco Bikes, Trail Bicycles, Comox Valley Nissan, Kevin Reid Realty) currently leads the Expert Men’s category.

When asked his thoughts on defending his 2015 overall title, Makuch said he’d be lying if he didn’t feel the pressure to prove himself again this year.  “There’s definitely that feeling of having a target on your back, and to prove last year wasn’t a fluke.

“We started racing in March, and it’s tough to stay focused for such a long season, but this type of thing helps keep you motivated,” says Makuch.

Local Realtor Kevin Reid, who sponsors both individual riders as well as the Island Cup Series as a whole, has watched the Island Cup Series progress to its current level. “The level of riding on Vancouver Island is so high,” says Reid.

“Despite the grassroots nature of the Island Cup, the competition is relentless, but the atmosphere is friendly and relaxed which makes it a great series for both new and experienced racers.  This season has been no different and I’m looking forward to watching the last round of the series on Sunday.”

Makuch also commented on the next generation of racers:  “The changing of the guard is definitely in full swing. Some of the young riders are really driving the level of competition.

“Just take a look at the junior riders on the Trail Bicycles Team in Courtenay. These are the riders to watch out for, and the ones who will be leading the charge in the next few years.”

Enduro racing is a mountain bike race format that consists of multiple stages (usually three to seven), with untimed climbs and timed descents, essentially creating a multi-stage downhill race with climbing between stages.

Races usually take three to five hours to complete, with about 20-30 minutes of timed racing. Top riders need a well-rounded skill set, blending extreme levels of fitness with strong technical skills.

The Vancouver Island Cup Mountain Bike Race Series is B.C.’s premiere grassroots race series spanning the length of the Island.

For more information on the series, visit islandcupseries.com

 

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