the Canyon Belgian Waffle Ride—affectionately known as the BWR. This is the inaugural edition of the Cedar City event and the first BWR to be held outside of San Diego, as Covid-19 would have it. We’re excited to offer something completely different with the Cedar City location and give riders a chance to race when there hasn’t been such an opportunity for eight months with the pandemic.
The BWR CC has a parcourse that is quite the juxtaposition to the ones we have run in San Diego. The only Euro-style Spring Classic on American soil, the Canyon BWR SD is a road race punctuated by 17 faux pave sectors (read: dirt for 53-miles) over roughly 138-miles and 12,000 feet of climbing. Cedar City’s is a gravel race broken up with roughly 10 road sectors and half the climbing of San Diego. Regardless of the vital stats, the BWR CC race will offer up the same type of insanity, challenge and the unparalleled experience that has made the BWR notorious and noteworthy.
Riders coming to win will have their work cut out for them, as this inaugural event the pro field is deep. Still, riders of all abilities will tackle the same course at the same time after the start gun goes off and an initial neutral section of four-miles is completed. The Wafer Ride will also start with the Waffle Ride and will traverse a course 78-miles in length, the first 54-miles of which are on the Waffle course. The last 11-miles of the Wafer route also follow the Waffle course.
Photos courtesy of the Belgian Waffle Ride.
Belgian Waffle Ride Cedar City Course Summary
- 6,000 Feet of Climbing
- 10 road sectors (the rest is off-road)
- 75% off-road (Long, Sandy, Wet or Dry, Rocky, Hilly, Ugly)
- Numerous Cattle Crossings, Water Crossing or Foot Bridges
- 3 Queen/King of the Mountain segments
- 3 Queen/King of the Dirt segments
- 3 Queen/King of the Sprint segments
- 6 Feed Zones
- 3,337 feet of Climbing
- 4 Feed Zones
At 125-miles in length, the BWR CC is shorter in length than the San Diego event and only climbs half the amount (but will hit an altitude of over 6,500 feet), 75% of the course is in gravel, sand, rocks or dirt, and the headwinds from approximately mile-42 to mile-97 will have a definite bearing on whether people finish or not. This is not to discount the other challenges of the course, of which there are many, including the need for tires at least 40mm in width. Please don’t say we didn’t warn you. THIS IS YOUR WARNING: When it doubt, add more rubber, more gears, more training, more grit, more beer.
Leaving the start/finish line after being corralled along the road in clusters of 50 or less people, riders will all be wearing masks for the initial part of the day… all the way up until the green flag is waved at mile-four and the race commences. Riders must also wear masks at every one of the Feed Zones, where they will need to interact with others and fill their water bottles and/or retrieve pre-packaged food to help them survive. For the Waffle, there are six Feed Zone and four for the Wafer.
Hitting the first gravel road—Groene Vlaggen—soon after the waving of the green flag will be eye-opening for all but those who live in the area. The gravel will immediately slow people down, except for the leaders who will soon be down the groad. This section, after an initial slight downhill, will undulate with three distinct pitches before hitting the tiny town of Summit.
By now, at mile-13, the field will have been obliterated into tiny little ‘groeperings’ as a left turn will take riders through a turn a tunnel and onto a long gravel straightaway that might be deceiving enough for some riders to try to catch the riders ahead.
The next six- or seven-miles, the Kakaboulette sector, will feel like a false flat but it’s a net-downhill sector that loses around 300 feet until hitting the corner of Little Salt lake. This is where the race will take a decided turn for many with the first BWR-like segment confronting riders. It is here the first King/Queen of the Dirt and Mountain competitions will commence with Ronde van Rode Heuvelsand the Red Hills Climb, Rode Heuvels.
The first climb is less than three-miles in length and only climbs a total of 436 feet, but the trail is rocky, filled with tricky spots and is a noticeably different colored dirt. In fact this area is called Red Hills for the color of the Terran. The dirt sector continues along here for another seven-miles of incredibly fun but challenging terrain before arriving at the Parowan Gap where the first Feed Zone will be at mile-29.
After this first place to replenish water and food supplies, there will be a brief respite on asphalt for about one-mile before the gravel rollers of Horse Hollow on the sector know as Rollers for Rouleurs, which is 10-miles of true gravel covering 10 rollers that collectively are sure to take the snap out of most every leg. Toward the end here is the first king/queen of the sprint sector, Paard Party, an 8/10ths of a mile uphill slog. Hit it hard, because there is good news at the end… the next major sector takes a turn to the south and into the glorious headwind that will only get worse by the minute.
Read more at Belgian Waffle Ride.