By Nate Gibby — The Intermountain Cup Mountain Bike Racing Series wrapped up its 2016 series in August with the final races of both the X-country and Endurance Series. Jeff Bender won the overall X-Country series in the Elite Men’s category, followed by Chris Holley and Justin Desilets. KC Holley won the Elite Women’s category of the X-Country followed by Nicole Tittensor.
Chris Holley took the victory in the Elite Men’s category of the Endurance series with Justin Desilets and Justin Lindine finishing off the podium. KC Holley also won the Elite Women’s category in the Endurance series, followed by Jen Hanks and Sofia Gomez Villafane.
“The Intermountain Cup racing series is likely one of the most recognized series throughout the state of Utah,” said Joel Rackham, executive director of Intermountain Cup. “In acquiring the series in 2016, our goal was to work toward making this a top tier event. Throughout the off season we will be taking key learnings, working with participants in feedback session, and coordinating with great sponsors to make each event one that stands out as among the great events.”
2016 proved to be a great year for the Intermountain Cup as the series experienced a 130% in participation over prior years. “We saw great growth, which means fantastic competition for our local riders,” said Rackham. “Between the awards, live bands, food, pristine course, and overall great racing we really enjoyed putting on the series final at Sundance.”
“The Intermountain Cup will always be my favorite courses to race,” said Tittensor, who rode to a top-10 finish at the XC National Championships in Mammoth, Calif. in July. “National races are awesome, intense, and very exciting, but the trails in Utah cannot be beat. Every time I line up for an ICUP race, it feels like I'm coming home.”
According to Rackham, big plans are in the works for the Intermountain Cup series. “Look for us to focus heavily on the ‘rider first,’ specifically on things to attract more junior riders, and female riders,” he said. “With over 25 years of racing being provide to local cyclist through Intermountain Cup, we look for to identifying the best courses throughout Utah to provide an even richer experience to the riders.”
The Intermountain Cup Series offers both a traditional seven-race cross-country (X-Country) format mountain bike races, as well as a four-race endurance series featuring longer courses of up to 50 miles. With the 2017 series set to be announced, keep your eyes open for upcoming races. For full details or to register for a race, visit: www.intermountaincup.com