The Life Time Little Sugar Classic is a prestigious MTB race that takes place in the world-class MTB hotbed of Bentonville, Arkansas. Little Sugar Classic is part of the Life Time Big Sugar Classic festival, which is a week-long celebration that allows off-road enthusiasts to shred both the MTB trails and gravel roads that put Bentonville on the map for cycling. Little Sugar takes place on October 15, followed by the Big Sugar Gravel Classic takes place on October 21.
The Little Sugar Classic is part of the Leadville Race Series and a qualifier for the prestigious 2024 Leadville Trail 100 MTB. There are a minimum of 40 LT100 qualifier coins up for grabs at this year’s race. Half of the total LT100 coins will be distributed based on performance, and half of the coins will be given away in the Event Lottery at the conclusion of the awards ceremony. Only the 100K distance serves as a qualifier for the LT100 MTB.
Little Sugar offers three-course options, including 100K, 50K, or 20K courses that will have those legs burning and hearts pumping. Courses will start in Bentonville and travel north into Bella Vista, traversing the hollers and ravines of Little Sugar and Back 40. You’ll get a firsthand view of the unique bluff lines, caves, waterfalls, and iconic Ledges in the Ozarks! Don’t be fooled – these trail systems offer grinding climbs that alternate with fasting rolling descents! While you’ll feel like you are in the middle of nowhere, you’ll connect to Slaughter Pen as you make your way back home. A world-class urban trail system with clean flow lines, technical rock features, and a view of the picturesque Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. The signature 100K route comes with 6600 feet of elevation gain.
Bentonville, Arkansas, is a vibrant city located in the northwestern part of the state. Nestled in the Ozark Mountains, which provides a stunning backdrop for outdoor enthusiasts. The region features a diverse landscape, including wooded areas, rolling hills, and picturesque trails, making it an ideal destination for outdoor activities. Mountain biking holds a special place in Bentonville’s identity. The city has earned a reputation as a premier mountain biking destination, attracting riders from all over the world. This reputation is primarily due to the efforts of the Walton Family Foundation and the collaboration between local organizations, businesses, and the community.
Bentonville boasts an extensive network of world-class mountain biking trails. The trails cater to riders of all skill levels, from beginners to seasoned professionals. The trails are designed to offer an exhilarating experience while showcasing the natural beauty of the area. Some of the notable mountain biking trails in Bentonville include:
- Slaughter Pen Trail System: This trail system is located in the heart of Bentonville and offers a variety of interconnected loops suitable for riders of different skill levels. It features technical challenges, flowy sections, and stunning views.
- Coler Mountain Bike Preserve: Located just minutes from downtown Bentonville, Coler offers a range of trails that cater to different skill levels. It features flow trails, jump lines, drops, and rock gardens, providing an adrenaline-pumping experience.
- Blowing Springs Park: Situated on the outskirts of Bentonville, this park offers a mix of cross-country and downhill trails. It has beautiful scenery and diverse trail options suitable for riders of various abilities.
In addition to mountain biking, Bentonville provides ample opportunities for other outdoor sports and activities. Hiking enthusiasts can explore numerous trails that wind through the surrounding forests and offer breathtaking views. The nearby lakes and rivers provide opportunities for fishing, canoeing, and kayaking.