Exposure

Crested Butte’s Fat Bike World Championships Looks Like the Most Fun You Can Have on Two Wheels

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Photo: Eddie Clark

Last week, 260 racers lined up to compete in Crested Butte’s inaugural Fat Bike World Championships. The race is a world championship in name only, as it’s not sanctioned by cycling’s international governing body, the UCI, but we don’t care: the photos from the event make it look like about the most fun you can have on two wheels. Like all the very best bike races, this one attracted lots of crushers (including pro roadie Robbie Squire), without taking itself too seriously (note the Fat Bike Worlds branding iron, copious number of kegs, and costumed riders). Professional photographer Eddie Clark went to the comp for us and came back with these 13 shots of fatties in their element.

Photo: Elite men’s racer and Crested Butte local Jordan Williford, from the Brick Oven, laid down the law early, stringing the field out from the starting line.

Photo: Eddie Clark
Racers started in waves that went nine rows deep, which made for a very rare large congregation of fat bikes.
Photo: Eddie Clark
Much attention was given to grooming the course, and this Rokon was just one of the many unique vehicles used prior to the race. Fat biking is best on smooth, well-packed single- or doubletrack.
Photo: Eddie Clark
Two wheels or three, it’s all good when you’re a fat biker in Crested Butte.
Photo: Eddie Clark
Competitors were all smiles at registration. Good luck kept the bulk of the forecasted new snow at bay until the race finished.
Photo: Eddie Clark
Racers headed up to a high point on the 5.5-mile course, which had multiple hills steep enough to get them walking their bikes.
Photo: Eddie Clark
Professional road racer Robbie Squire, center, relied on good fitness and a bit of luck to become the first-ever Crested Butte Fat Bike World Champion. He’d only ridden a fat bike once before: his biggest challenge was obtaining one for the race.
Photo: Eddie Clark
When riding fatties in rough conditions, good bike-handling skills help. Rebecca Gross put her finely honed cyclocross technique to good use to crack the top five in the elite women’s field.
Photo: Eddie Clark
In case you haven’t heard, the Denver Broncos are going to the Superbowl, and this luchador couldn’t be happier. (The post-race hot chocolate helped, too.)
Photo: Eddie Clark
What’s better than racing in the first Fat Bike World Championships? For Sarah Sheets, it’s the finish-line beer feed.
Photo: Eddie Clark
Fat-bike racers are a hardy crew, and a winter storm just added to the ambience during the post-race Lez Zeppelin concert.
Photo: Eddie Clark
Lez Zeppelin belted out the best of Led Zeppelin during the post-race party.
Photo: Eddie Clark
The FBW iron was mostly put to use on burgers and buns, but one racer did step up to the branding plate.
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