The course for the upcoming Dark Horse Invitational is around 55 per cent complete.
The course designed by local bike pro Casey Brown for the up and coming invite-only, all women’s event, is being built at the base of Revelstoke Mountain Resort.
The total cost to build is around $50,000 and is being funded by the Resort Municipality Initiative (RMI). RMI is a program intended to support small, tourism-based municipalities and is managed by the provincial Ministry of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport. Revelstoke’s portion of the funds are given out by the city’s Tourism Initiative Committee.
The course is located just up from the disc golf course below The Last Spike.
“The cool thing is that the course is going to be super accessible for spectators,” said Carly Moran, communications manager for Revelstoke Mountain Resort.
Construction of the course is lead by Sicamous local Corbin Selfe, friend of Brown and trail builder. Selfe has worked on similar project in the past such as the title line at Silver Star Mountain Resort, The slope-style course at Big White Bike Park as well as a couple stints building for Red Bull Rampage.
“I grew up in Sicamous and there really wasn’t much of a biking scene so we had to build trails if we wanted to ride you wouldn’t be able to do that these days,” said Selfe.
The main skeleton of the course is taking shape, starting with a wooden platform which will sending rider out about 17 feet and dropping about 13.
“We’ve got the whole thing roughed in right now, it’s now just a matter of fine tuning it, that’s what takes the most time,” remarked Selfe. “I’d say seven times out of ten you get it all nice and then it doesn’t ride the way you want it so you gotta keep going back and adding to it or taking from it.”
Blueprints initially showed six jumps as well as an air bag and a mulch jump for progression, however a couple of setbacks have arisen in the process. The heat and lack of rain dried out the dirt, making the materials more challenging to build with. On top of that the digger was delivered late due to the wildfires.
“I’d rather quality over quantity,” said Selfe. “So instead we will have four really dialled hits plus the airbag and mulch jump.”
The jumps will stay up after the event and will become part of RMR’s trail network. They will be open to the public in some capacity.
“Size wise it’s pretty comparable to Whistler’s pro lines - dirt merchant and crab apple - their’s might be a little smaller, it’s hard to say but it’s definitely comparable,” said Selfe.
While the event has big name industry sponsors, Moran emphasized that local sponsors really stepped up to support including: Monashee Spirits, Stoke Roasted Coffee, Mt. Begbie Brewery, Regent Hotel, River City Pub and Save On Foods.
The event will take place from Aug. 16 - 20. A roster of 8 - 12 invitation only athletes take part.