Ever since I participated at the first Gravel cup of the season, I wanted to attend the other events. Sadly I could not attend the second one and did not want to skip the third event of the season.
The third race was in the magnificent town of Calabogie near the Ottawa region. I decided to arrive on the Friday to explore the surroundings and grab a lunch and a drink. My experience at the Redneck bistro did not disappoint. A pleasant and welcoming staff and the beer and tacos were awesome. My stay at the Calabogie motor inn was perfect, and the reviews were spot on. Susan, the owner, was welcoming and genuinely happy to see me.
The race was on Saturday, and I loaded the day before the map for the 47 km. On my arrival the organization was well prepared and welcoming. The tropical and humid temperature was present, and I could not properly race without my Upika in my Camelbak.The longer distances left before us and on time. Brendan, the organizer, promised me a great race with not many tarmac and they delivered on this. It was a broad mix of every type of gravel you can find.The race was a fast rolling one and the elevation was perfect for people who are starting gravel bike and are unadvanced. You can clearly achieve this distance without any problems. The unique issue we encountered was the lack of a feed zone for my distance only. For the people less prepared it could have become an issue.Beside that, everybody had a radiant smile on their faces including me.
Right in front of me a lady fell off her bike and I stopped to make sure she was alright and I left right after. I battled for the 2-3 spot with an impressive rider and we talked on the way.He finally had a problem with his through axle, and I gunned for the second spot on the podium.
Upon our arrival at the event, we were greeted with a nice beer and a delicious lunch. The podiums were done later in the day, and few people were missing since it was in my opinion too long after the last race (that is why some people are missing on the podium pictures).
For diner, I went to the Calabogie brewing co and the watermelon beer was awesome and my lunch too. The two restaurants that I visited are a must in the region without a doubt.
In conclusion I must admit that I really like the vibe at the Gravel Cup. No massive egos and pure grassroots fun. Next year I am attending all their events without a doubt with a longer distance.
You can have more information about Gravel Cup Canada here: