With Belgian Waffle Ride British Columbia, Monuments of Cycling (MoC), a premier cycling events producer best known for its iconic Belgian Waffle Ride California, brings its popular format to Vancouver Island for the first time this Spring. Created as extremely challenging races in the spirit of the great European one-day Spring Classics, BWR events have a growing cult following and are known as some of the most unique cycling events in the country. Incredibly dynamic, multi-surface ‘unroad’ parcourses replete with single track, sand, rocks, gravel, water crossings, cyclocross features, and even some asphalt. The team at Strambecco considers Belgian Waffle Ride British Columbia a.k.a. “The Hell of the Great White North” to be one of the Best Gravel Cycling Events in the Northwest.
The inaugural BWR BC will take place in and around Duncan, BC, 40 miles north of Victoria while the race venue is Cowichan Exhibition Park due to its proximity to epic singletrack on Mt. Tzouhalem (the Zoo), Maple Mountain, and Mt. Prevost. Monuments of Cycling has partnered with popular Canadian event producer Panache Cycling Sports to offer this first event outside of the United States. Belgian Waffle Ride British Columbia is already creating quite the buzz of anticipation and drawing world-class athletes, current and former pros including Rob Britton so you can expect a deep list of hungry amateur riders drawn to the unparalleled opportunity to race alongside some of the best in the sport.
Like other BWR events, in California, N. Carolina, Utah, Kansas, Michigan, and Arizona, the course is designed to showcase a challenging ‘unroad’ multi-surface route that takes advantage of each beautiful location’s unique topography. Belgian Waffle Ride British Columbia is offering 3 route options: the Waffle course is 136 miles with 8500 feet of climbing, the Wafer course is 67 miles with 5,000 ft of elevation gain, and finally the Wanna course at 32 miles with 1,800 ft of climbing. Depending on the course, there will be a range of 22-50% of “Unroad” miles/sections, tight corners, roots, water crossings and obstacles, and 1-7 feed zones fueled by The Feed. Check out the official 2023 Race Bijbel for all of the race specifics and don’t forget to connect with FasCat Coaching for a personalized training plan.
In conjunction with the race, Unroad Cycling Festival will be taking place all weekend and featuring live music, a beer garden, industry expo, family friendly fun and a variety of food options. Lodging options include a variety of partner hotels such as Oceanfront at Cowichan Bay, Villa Eyrie, Four Points by Sheraton, while those looking to camp onsite at the venue can register for a bikepacking, tent, or van/RV space. There are many vacation rentals available in the area as well as other unique accommodations like this farm that has fun glamping options. The Cowichan is not only gorgeous but has so much to offer from endless outdoor recreation, delicious food & drink, interesting arts & culture, so be sure to plan some extra time after the event to explore!
Participants will be eligible to compete for the 2023 Quadrupel Crown of Gravel Series which kicks off with the new BWR Arizona and offers a unique way to experience the unroad dynamics of BWR events/races. The Quadrupel Crown, comprised of all the BWRs, is billed as the largest gravel series in the world, which will be contested in a points-based omnium format across all the 2023 BWRs. Riders competing for the Quadrupel honors and prize purse will be able to take the points of their top four (Quad) races to vie for the win. The series will recognize professional riders and age groupers alike.