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Final day of Iron Horse ends with smiles despite storm

Races shortened, called off due to weather
Cyclists have fun in the 2018 Iron Horse Bicycle Classic Cruiser Criterium in Downtown Durango. The crit was cancelled because of rain during the 2019 Iron Horse.

The Iron Horse Bicycle Classic was able to fit most of the morning races into its final day, but the final two, the mountain bike race and the cruiser criterium, were both impacted by an afternoon storm that rolled through downtown Durango.

The mountain bike race was shortened from a three-lap race to two, and the cruiser crit was canceled due to weather.

IHBC assistant race director Todd Wells cited rider safety as the main factor for canceling the final event of the weekend.

“The pavement after the rain rolled through was really slick and it would’ve been too hazardous,” Wells said. “It kind of put a damper on things to end, but we still had a good morning session of races. We had our largest turnout ever for the Sprite Kids Race, it was huge. It was awesome to see all the little kids competing and going hard all the way to the end. In the mountain bike categories, we needed about one more hour to get it all in. Luckily, we were able to get everyone to safety and out of the way of lightning strikes.”

In the Sprite Kids Race, racers from age 3-10 competed a two-lap circuit on E. 2nd Ave. and racers were separated by age division. There were no official results and every finisher received a medal.

While the weather turned mid-afternoon just as the mountain bike races were underway, Wells said that the remainder of the weekend was successful and he said the finishes to each race was equally as exciting.

“We’ve had awesome races, and for the racers, it’s always fun to be in the mix with some close finishes,” Wells said. “As a spectator, it’s fun to see a fast finish. We had tail-wind finishes in Silverton for the road racing categories and it was the same thing down here in town on Main Street. It was awesome racing, and it was great to have at Buckley Park. It just felt more festival-like and it didn’t feel as bunched up as it is when you only have Main Street’s width.”

It was Wells’ first year on the organizing side of the Iron Horse and he thanked both spectators and volunteers for making the most of the weekend.

“From the outside, it looks seamless,” Wells said. “I always tell people that when you watch anyone that’s really good at something, it always looks easy, but there’s so much that goes on behind the scenes.”

bploen@durangoherald.com

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