Sea Otter Classic

Monterey, CA//April 16-19

Feb 24, 2009
Outside Magazine
Sea Otter Classic

   Photo: courtesy of Sea Otter Classic

The Classic is huge, with 10,000 bikers competing in nine events and dozens of classes—everything from cross-country to downhill to criteriums (short-course road races)—in front of 50,000 spectators. That means there's a race for everyone, but don't overdo it. Focus on no more than one per day and pick your best event—with so many entrants, the competition can be tough even in beginner races. Study the complex schedule so you aren't late for your race. (Staying away from the beer tent helps.) Be sure to catch the crit and short-track races, where you can get right next to the action, and bring some binocs to watch the dual- slalom racers charge downhill, kamikaze style. From $35;