If the Butte 100 Mountain Bike Race isn’t on your radar, yet, it should be.
Just as quickly as the race opened its online registration Monday night, it was over. In 12 minutes, the 250 racer maximum was reached and the waiting list began to grow to more than 100 additional racers. For a short time, exactly 4 minutes and 23 seconds for the 50-mile race and 12 minutes 58 seconds for the 100-mile race, the eyes of the national mountain biking world were fixed solely on “The Butte.”
“It’s mind blowing to see how this race has grown,” said Gina Evans, the Butte 100 director, sponsorship coordinator, and racer. “There’s just no words to describe what we’ve been able to create — we see racers from all over the nation and Canada. As crazy as registration gets for that short amount of time, it makes us realize that we’ve sure got something special. For a day, all those racers get to play on the amazing trails we have right here in our backyard.”
Jon Wick, communications director for the race, agrees, “selling out in four minutes is something that we’ve joked about in the past, that’s how unbelievable it is.”
Though the quality of the trails in the area, including the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail, are contributing factors, Wick is quick to credit all who make the race possible.
“In recent years, we’ve evolved our focus from the race itself, to the racers,” Wick said. “We operate within numerous constraints, but creating a superior race experience has contributed to the overall success. That comes from many directions, the USFS and BLM, the incredible Neon Army of volunteers, the support of our sponsors, and the other organizers. When it comes right down to it, we want everyone involved with the race to leave with a huge smile on their face. Those smiles have a ripple effect.”
The speed at which the race sold out broke the previous year’s record of four hours. Race organizers anticipated another sell out of the 250 allotted registrations, but they never thought registration would close before their dinner go cold. The eighth annual race will take place at Homestake Pass on the weekend of July 26. For more information on the race or to sign up as a volunteer, visit www.butte100.com.