Here is Brian’s description of the event:
This was the fifth year for Coronado’s Challenge. A little background on Coronado Heights. This significant “hill” is 3 miles north and west of Lindsborg, KS and is so named due to a portion of chain-mail armor thought to be of Spanish origin found near the hill. It is believed to be of the era of the explorer Francisco Vasquez de Coronado who journeyed into Kansas in 1541.
During the Workers Project Administration in 1936 some native stone structures were built on the hill including a ‘castle’ and picnic shelters. The property is privately owned by a local Historical Board but maintains full public access.
We run races on both Saturday and Sunday of the race week-end. Two short-track, time-trial events, a Hill-Climb and Down-Hill (Super-D) on Saturday and our 4-Hour Endurance Race happens Sunday. The trail ‘proper’ is approximately 1.5 miles and circles the hill. This is the trail that we groom and ride throughout the year. For the race week-end we have access to private property to the east and north of Coronado Heights including pasture land, a farmstead and wooded creek-bed. All included this gives us a 5+ mile loop for the endurance race. Do NOT be decieved by the short mileage. With the exception of a lane road and the wooded section the Coronado Heights trail is very vertical and moderately technical.
We average 12-20 racers on Saturday and typically double that on Sunday. We would be thrilled to have double those numbers but have to fit our race in between other point-series races during late summer/fall.
Most of our race participants are from the central Kansas area with core numbers of Central Kansas Mountain Bike Club members being from Great Bend, Hays, Russell, Salina, Lindsborg and surrounding communities. We have had racers come from Nebraska, Emporia, Wichita and Eastern Kansas who are perhaps less interested in point-series events. CKMBC is very grass-roots and was originated to coalesce the riders of this region of Kansas. Even though Coronado’s Challenge is the only race done under the auspice of CKMBC, members of the group individually promote their own race/ride events throughout the year including but not limited to:
- Kansas Fat Tire Festival – Wilson Lake State Park
- Cruise the Blues – Tipton, KS
- Ride to Paradise – Russell, KS
Detailed event information can be found at ckmbc.com
Thanks for the race report, Brian!