Desert Classic bicycle race is Saturday

Desert Classic bicycle race is SaturdayBy REBECCA KUNKEL

High Sierra Cyclists President

The Ridgecrest Desert Classic bicycle race is taking place on Saturday, Nov. 18, with the Classic Loop and Beginner racers leaving the Cerro Coso Community College parking lot at 9:30 a.m., and the Sport and Expert-Pro classes taking off at 10:15 a.m.

Race lengths are approximately eight miles for the Classic course, 14 for Beginner, 21 for Sport and 27 for Expert-Pro.

Registration is available at highsierra

cyclists.club under the RDC tab, and the current race roster can be viewed from the same location. This will be the sixth year High Sierra Cyclists has sponsored the event and is experiencing record-breaking registration (with final numbers not available at press time).

Local Club Members Arjuna Flenner, Brent Cornelius and Will Pease will represent High Sierra Cyclists Mountain Bike Team this year and should do well in their respective classes, Flenner in the Pro class, and Cornelius and Pease in the Expert 30 to 39 class.

Flenner and Cornelius had successful racing seasons with the Kenda Cup Endurance Series being an excellent representation. This series consists of five races and ranks competitors according to point accumulation. Flenner placed third on the season in the Pro class while Cornelius placed first overall in the men’s 30 to 39 class. Will Pease placed third overall in the inaugural Tinker Classic at the Spicer Ranch in May.

Dirt-biker-turned-mountain-biker and High Sierra Cyclists Member Colby Begin will also race this year and is looking to improve on his already impressive 2016 Expert course time of 2:03:44. Begin competed in an Over the Hump mountain bike series single race in May and placed first in the 40-plus sport class.

Dave Spicer, founder of STORM-OV and the subsidiary Trails-OV, will also be in attendance at the 2017 Ridgecrest Desert Classic. He has become a powerful force in the mountain bike community as he works to balance recreation and conservation in his small hometown of Beatty, Nev.

Spicer collaborates regularly with local businesses and the Bureau of Land Management , among other entities, to stimulate the local economy while being mindful of the environment. He is assisting Event Director Cimarron Chacon for the second annual Tinker Classic, slated for March 31. The legendary Tinker Juarez will not only be present at the Tinker Classic (60k and 100k), but will also compete at his namesake race. See trails-ov.org and tinkerclassic.com for more information.

Derek Hermon, owner of Bear Valley Bikes and founder of Speed Evolution, will be in attendance as well. Hermon has achieved an impressive professional mountain bike resume and, like Spicer, has contributed an immense amount of energy to the mountain bike scene.

Hermon has attended every Ridgecrest Desert Classic since its rebirth in 2012 and has also begun his own local mountain bike race, the Grizzly 100 (bbvrace.com), which is set for Sept. 29, 2018.

Pictured: Ron Bell, Andy Couch, and Ron Strand condition for the Desert Classic by riding through the Rademachers. -- Courtesy photo

Story First Published: 2017-11-17