Cyclocross Racing meets Beer Festival in Hailey, Idaho
In the eyes of many, it’s nothing shy of a match made in heaven: bicycle racing meets beer, they fall in love and decide to throw a party.
The annual Idaho Crosstoberfest presented by SCOTT Sports is just such a celebration. Combining two days of cyclocross races with a craft beer festival, Crosstoberfest—as it’s simple called in the Gem State—will be celebrating its 8th year this October 26 -27th. While cyclocross racing has been popular in Europe for over 60 years, the sport is essentially just catching on here in the States—but it’s doing so swiftly. Cyclocross is America’s fastest growing cycle-sport.
Cyclocross events traditionally take place in the autumn and early winter and consist of short races (usually lasting less than an hour) where the competitors make laps on short tracks (usually less than two miles long) that contain challenging terrain, which varies from dirt to pavement to grass, and includes obstacles that occasionally force riders to dismount and carry their bikes.
This fun twist on traditional bicycle racing has it roots in places like Belgium and The Netherlands, so it’s only fitting that handcrafted beer would get wedded into things.
Crosstoberfest Idaho was the brainchild of Billy Olson, a former professional road bike racer and owner of what is considered to be one of the best—and perhaps only—bike repair shop/beer geek haven/burger bars in the nation according to places like Outside and Bike magazines, the Power House Pub & Bike Studio. “This event is just a lot of fun,” Billy said, about truly grass-roots event that has been steadily growing since its inception.
Both the pub and Crosstoberfest take place in Hailey, about a dozen miles south of America’s original destination ski resort of Sun Valley. Scott Sports has long been a big supporter or Crosstoberfest and consider it an investment in their business as well as the community. According to Adrian Montgomery, Scott’s Bike Division Marketing and PR Director, Scott considers being involved in Crosstoberfest to be a win-win, as it helps raise awareness to the sport of cyclocross and the excellent CX bikes Scott has designed. “We’re a long time supporter of Crosstoberfest and now we have the SCOTT-3Rox Racing Team that can come and contest the event,” said Montgomery. “I’m fired up to show off our product and our team in our hometown.”
Close to two thousand riders, racing fans and beer lovers are expected to attend this year’s Idaho Crosstoberfest, which features races for just about every age category and almost 100 different beers from more than 20 breweries from across the globe. Live music and locally grown and raised Bavarian-style food is also on the line-up.
Even if combining bicycle racing and a beerfest seems like and odd marriage to some folks, no one can debate that it sure makes for one heck of a party.