World Cup mountain bike racing returns to Snowshoe Mountain this week

Local Sports

SNOWSHOE, West Va. (WFXR) — After last year’s edition was cancelled because of the pandemic, the World Cup is back at Snowshoe Mountain. Organizers are set to host top talent on the heels of the sport shining in the Olympic spotlight earlier this summer.

“The biggest thing that we took away from 2019 was confidence,” Snowshoe Resort marketing and public relations manager Shawn Cassell said. “That was the first time we’ve ever held an event like that here and the months leading up to it, you never know what you can do until you’ve done it right? And I think that event went so well and we had such positive feedback from everyone from the event organizers to the racers and the fans.”

The event will feature athletes competing in both downhill and cross-country disciplines in the only North American stop on the World Cup tour this season.

“To host a world cup race, you have to have world class terrain. That’s something we demonstrated through this event. There’s a lot of folks who’ve never heard of Snowshoe or if they’ve heard of Snowshoe, they’ve never been to Snowshoe,” Cassell said. “And when you have a World Cup race, people start saying hey maybe we should see what all the hype is about.”

The 2019 races were the first of its kind to be held on American soil in half a decade and was later named PinkBike’s “Event of the Year”. Organizers this week hope to solidify Snowshoe as a world-class destination for the sport.

“In winter, folks travel from all over the region to ski at snowshoe. But in the summer, folks are traveling from all over the world to mountain bike so I think that says a lot,” Cassell said. “We’re becoming a staple on the world cup circuit and that was the goal all along.”

And the competition features several Olympians including American favorite Kate Courtney and gold medalists Jolanda Neff and Tom Pidcock.

“A lot of people were just blown away, saying this is a sport? This is really cool and that goes to show you how mountain biking is still growing and has a ways to go,” Cassell said. “It puts it in front of people who had not seen it before. That’s the biggest thing is exposure.”

The World Cup Finals will be broadcast globally live on Red Bull TV. The event will also be open
to spectators. Tickets are available for purchase at www.snowshoemtn.com/WorldCup.

This year’s World Cup events at Snowshoe will take place September 13-19, 2021. See the full
practice and race schedule here.

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