In Feb and March 2019 I am hosting a series of 4 gravel road bike training rides from Hugo, Mn to Marine on St. Croix. Check out the blog page I created here for more details.
Also connect with me on Facebook and you will see the 4 events I have created.
I hope you can make it. Should be fun. These are FREE events.
It's been a cold end to Jan. and most of us have had to spin indoors or ride the fat bike sparingly outside. My hope is to push ourselves a bit with the mileage and prove we can take on the spring gravel classics here in MN.
One of the topics that I have been thinking about a lot lately is how important it is to keep gravel bike events free of charge. I have looked at other races in the Midwest and see they charge somewhere from $50-100 per entry. This doesn't include Dirty Kanza which charges even more.
People say, you need insurance to cover yourself. So I have inquired with a local attorney and looked at some websites online. It appears that if you are a company like an Llc. you need insurance. (If not an LLC. still consult an attorney). From what I see, you can purchase one time event insurance for about $6-10 per entry. You can add riders to the policy for volunteer's medical coverage, harassment, accidents etc. This may raise the cost slightly but not to the $50 level.
Add in a porta poddy or two, and maybe some food and bev. for the stops along the way if you like and I see no reason to charge more than $25-30 for an event.
Also consider this. Most racers do not toe the line without having their bike tuned up, replace their chain or cassette, purchase at least $10 of food or sports drink to survive the event, maybe buy new tires, gas to drive there, and possibly even an overnight stay. I would say most people spend around $50-200 just to be on the starting line each time. This doesn't include any post-race damage to the bike and necessary repairs.
I propose that we work to keep gravel events free. That we reach out to bike shops and other vendors who want to be recognized by us who spend money in the local communities we visit and ask them to sponsor parts of the ride that are needed. If you need insurance, ask someone to cover for it. Or at minimum, be transparent in what your costs are. There is no need to deter people from racing. Its a different animal than someone out to try biking on gravel roads.
The roads are free to bike on. Keep gravel free.