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Nearly 1,500 riders are gathered in Sun Valley, Idaho on Thursday to kick off the Rebecca’s Private Idaho gravel race.
The event was founded nine years ago by ultra-endurance athlete Rebecca Rusch. It. features both a four-day stage race and a single-day race, and this year introduces two new categories: non-binary/FTW (Femme, Trans, Women) and paracyclist.
Read also: Monuments of Gravel: Rebecca’s Private Idaho
“In our race’s ninth year, I’m continually inspired to watch our RPI community grow and share the joy of cycling throughout our event,” Rusch said. “This year is even more meaningful with the addition of new more inclusive categories for all to participate. Together with brand partners including Giant and Liv, RPI is working towards a more inclusive future in the cycling community, and across the world.”
RPI boasts four different race formats for participants, including a stage race. The marquee event is the Big Potato, a 102-mile mixed surface route with 5,296 feet of climbing. For riders who aren’t quite ready to tackle a gravel century, RPI offers two shorter courses – the 20-mile Tater Tot and 56-mile French Fry.
For riders who truly want to test their stamina against challenging terrain, the three-day Queen’s Stage Race includes a day of 40 miles of mixed-terrain adventure riding, a “fierce individual time trial sandwiched between a neutral 20-mile rollout and return ride,” and culminates with the Baked Potato ride on Sunday. On Saturday, stage racers can opt for an optional fun ride, or go shred the countless miles of Sun Valley singletrack.
This year, RPI is also offering the RPI Remote category, which was first featured in 2020 due to COVID-19. Anyone can complete the virtual race anywhere in the world.
In 2019, Colin Strickland and Kaysee Armstrong won RPI and both will be back to defend the title. Other notable riders include world champion paracyclist Meg Fisher, transgender athlete and activist Molly Cameron, Pete Stetina, Amity Rockwell, Maude Farrell, Rose Grant, Crystal Anthony, Joshua Berry, and Carl Decker.