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FLC Cycling ready to host nationals

FLC Cycling ready to host nationals

Natalie Quinn of Fort Lewis College takes off at the start of the USA Cycling Collegiate MTB Championships women’s varsity cross-country race last year at…

Wednesday, Oct 12

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Natalie Quinn of Fort Lewis College takes off at the start of the USA Cycling Collegiate MTB Championships women’s varsity cross-country race last year at Purgatory Resort. Quinn returns after recently winning a national title on the track. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald) The USA Cycling Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championships are returning to Purgatory Resort Thursday through Sunday, welcoming roughly 300 athletes from more than 40 colleges to the bike park to compete in five disciplines.

“It’s pretty exciting,” said Fort Lewis College’s director of cycling, Ian Burnett. “It’s definitely a lot of work, but it’s all worth it when you (see) them all out there racing.”

Burnett said they made a few adjustments to make the event smoother this year. Heavy snowfall just before last year’s championships caused several courses to be altered, but the weather looks like it will cooperate with the championships this year.

“It’s looking cooler, but sunny and dry,” Burnett said. “The weather should be more spectator friendly.”

With no snow, FLC will be able to showcase some of Purgatory’s most famous trails. The downhill competition will take place on World Cup course, and the cross-country race will be held on the same course where Ned Overend won the first mountain biking world title back in 1990.

Burnett said the short-track cross-country course and the team relay course were changed a little from last year, so they’ll go through the center of the base village more.

The dual slalom championships, which will begin a couple hours earlier this year, will be […]

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