The BWR Asheville course proves to be a challenging ride.
Although this course is shorter in distance than the other races in the Triple Crown series, clocking in at just under 100 miles, the nature of Western North Carolina’s gravel roads make up for it in difficulty. Not only do you have to scale over 10,000 feet, with some roads having grades as steep as 12%, but much of the gravel that you must traverse is chunky, rutted out, and full of surprises. Especially with the tropical storm that passed through just a few days prior to race day, it presented to be an additional challenge navigating through more washed out and looser sections.
Pinnacle Mountain, longest and toughest section of the course.
The segment that stood out the most to me was the Pinnacle Mountain Road climb, at around mile 65. I train on this gravel climb regularly, being a stone’s throw from Brevard. Calling this a road is a stretch, as you are confronted with rock gardens and rugged terrain winding all the way up the mountain for 10km, also making it the longest section of the course. For a mountain biker like me, I was excited to put my bike handling skills to good use and I couldn’t be happier with my gravel bike setup, which was equipped with Gulo Composites’ GGX-SL wheels! The GGX-SL’s were light and nimble for getting up these relentless climbs, while also proving their ability to take a beating from some unforgiving gravel.
No fear on my GGX-SL’s
Wheels are arguably the most important component of a bike, and I was extremely pleased with these wheels’ ability to handle such a long and tough course – not once did I find myself having to hold back in fear of breaking a spoke or rim, something that I saw other competitors struggling with.
A fantastic experience
In hindsight, BWR Asheville was a fantastic experience; I got to meet and ride with some great people on beautiful local roads, while also pushing myself to reach the finish line. I can’t wait for this event to come back next year!
– Nina “Machina”