Vélirium: INTENSE right to the end!

Vélirium: INTENSE right to the end!

International Mountain Bike Festival and Shimano UCI World Cup

Steve Smith after his 2013 Mont-Sainte-Anne victory. Photo credit : Sven Martin

Steve Smith after his 2013 Mont-Sainte-Anne victory. Photo credit : Sven Martin

Beaupré, August, 2013 – The new action-packed formula for Vélirium presented by Vidéotron will live long in the memory of athletes and spectators who were treated to an intense event right up until the final minutes of a long weekend of competitions and festivities! Mont-Sainte-Anne and downtown Québec City again proved themselves more than capable of hosting huge events that raise the profile of mountain biking across the Québec City area. The victory of the Canadian Steve Smith at the UCI downhill World Cup presented by Videotron has marked the history of Vélirium since he is the first Canadian to win the elite men’s downhill race at Mont-Sainte-Anne!

Memorable performances
Judging by the performances put in by athletes from Québec and the rest of Canada at the UCI World Cup, the next generation of riders has earned its spot on the circuit. At just 19 years old, Frédérique Trudel from Lévis finished 7th in the U23 event barely one week after a first-place finish at the Canada Games. “This year’s Cross-Country event was totally different—more intense and more physical than usual, so that was more of a challenge,” he says. “It was super and I’m really happy with my result.” Among the Elite riders, Raphaël Gagné and Andréanne Pichette gave their all to finish 43rd and 19th in the final rankings. And in Downhill, Canada’s Steve Smith will be bringing home a gold medal much to the delight of all the fans who had come to cheer him on along this year’s extra special course. “I could not be happier, I love this place and I had a great time on the course even if I was nervous with the rain,” commented Steve Smith, a few minutes after winning the gold medal in the UCI downhill World Cup presented by Videotron.

CITY8, a first with a bright future
The Vélirium long weekend got off to a strong start on Thursday with the CITY8 presented by Vidéotron urban event at Place d’Youville. Eight riders strutted their stuff on a dirt and freestyle track littered with eight obstacles in front of a crowd of over 5,000. The event was given a silver rating by the prestigious Freeride Mountain Bike (FMB) World Tour. Sweden’s Martin Söderström pulled off the best run of the evening. The best rider from Canada was Ontario’s Brayden Barret, who finished 4th. “CITY8 2013 confirms this discipline’s potential,” commented Gestev president Patrice Drouin. “We found the right formula when we opted for an urban concept that is unique in North America. Freeride fans and athletes are still buzzing about the first edition, and we’re enthusiastic about what the future will hold for the event.”

Popular amateur races
The Véli-Kidz children’s race was a big success this year, with not an empty space to be had on the starting grid. In all, 150 young cyclists age 5 to 9 crossed the start line on Saturday morning, to the applause of family and friends. And in today’s Raid Vélo Mag, exactly 519 cyclists started the 30 km, 60 km, and 80 km events. Needless to say, the organizing committee is prouder than ever of this 2013 edition, especially given the number of registrations for the amateur events. The host of other events that were held at the foot of the mountain all weekend long were also a huge success. The Pumptrack Epic, the iBike Criterium, the trial and skatebord demos, and the stands of the Exhibitors’ Village were all great places for visitors to learn more about the world of mountain biking.

Volunteers behind a successful event
Once again this year, the volunteers behind Vélirium proved the event wouldn’t be the same without them as they ensured both athletes and visitors had a great time. “They are the pillars of the organization and help make the mountain bike festival what it is today. We don’t know what we’d do without these 650 volunteers who put in over 10,000 hours of work,” stressed Gestev vice-president Chantal Lachance.

Sustainable development
And once again, the organizing committee went further than ever in its efforts to make the Vélirium site more environmentally friendly. A stand from local wind farm Parcs éoliens de la Seigneurie de Beaupré told visitors all about wind energy, while the GDG foundation refilled water bottles free of charge, a service that proved very popular. The bicycle park was also popular and encouraged people to use active transportation to get to the site. These measures and others meant that Vélirium 2013 was a “Level 2 responsible event” as certified by Bureau de normalisation du Québec.

Results at a Glance


1.    Martin Söderström (Sweden) 2. Sam Reynolds (England) 3. Cameron Zink (United States)
Best Canadian: Brandon Barret Hay (4th)

UCI Cross-Country World Cup Elite (Women)
1.    Katerina Nash (Czech Republic) 2. Maja Wloszczowska (Poland) 3. Tanja Zakelj (Slovenia)
Best Canadian: Catharine Pendrel (9th)
Best Quebecer: Andréeanne Pichette (Canada)

UCI Cross-Country World Cup (U23 Women)
1.    Rebecca Henderson (Australia) 2. Jenny Rissveds (Sweden) 3. Helen Grobert (Germany)
Best Canadian: Frédérique Trudel (7th)

UCI Cross-Country World Cup (Junior Women)
1.    Kate Courtney (United States) 2. Dina Gordiuk (Ukraine) 3. Rachel Pageau (Canada)
Best Canadian: Rachel Pageau (3rd)

UCI Cross-Country World Cup Elite (Men)
1.    Julien Absalon (France) 2. José Antonio Hermida Ramos (Spain) 3. Nino Schurter (Switzerland)
Best Canadian: Max Plaxton (9th)
Best Quebecer: Raphaël Gagné (43rd)

UCI Cross-Country World Cup (U23 Men)
1.    Anton Cooper (New Zealand) 2. Julian Schelb (Germany) 3. Reto Indergand (Switzerland)
Best Canadian: Antoine Caron (11th)
UCI Cross-Country World Cup (Junior Men)
1.    Peter Disera (Canada) 2. Lucas Newcomb (United States) 3. Marc-André Fortier (Canada)
Best Canadian: Peter Disera (1st)
Best Quebecer: Marc-André Fortier (3rd)

UCI Downhill World Cup (Juniors)

1.    Loris Vergier (France) 2. Dean Lucas (Australia) 3. Noel Niederberger (Switzerland)
Best Canadian : Mark Wallace (6th place)
Best Quebecer : Hugo Langevin (23rd place)

UCI Downhill World Cup (Elite Women)

1.    Emmeline Ragot (France) 2. Manon Carpenter (England) 3. Floriane Pugin (France)
Best Canadian : Micayla Gatto (8e place)
Best Quebecer : Vaea Verbeeck (13e place)

UCI Downhill World Cup (Elite Men)

1.    Steve Smith (Canada) 2. Gee Atherton (England) 3. Samuel Hill (Australia)
Best Canadian : Steve Smith (1st place)
Best Quebecer : Remi Gauvin (42nd place)

About Vélirium
Created in 2003, Vélirium is an international mountain bike festival built around the UCI World Cup, featuring a host of amateur races and sports, family, and cultural events. Vélirium is a “Level 2 responsible event,” certified by Bureau de normalisation du Québec.

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