Frequently Asked Questions
It can be overwhelming trying to figure out how to get into our sport – our governing body, now called Ontario Cycling used to have the most comprehensive racing calendar, however recently they have pushed most event promoters to get insurance elsewhere. There are signs of improvement with their association, but in the meantime, the main event promoters in Ontario, for MTB racing and events, are (Superfly Racing), Chico Racing (Run by my brother and I), Pulse Racing, Substance Projects, Tuesday Night Series at Kelso, and a handful of other promoters. By far the best way to start, is with a team event such as the Spring Epic 8 Relay, Summer/Fall Epic 8, the amazing 24 Hours of Summer Solstice or any of the many weekly series in Ontario. The Best weekly series include Kelso (see above), Albion Hills, Woodnewton, and Hardwood Ski and Bike (Pulse Racing).
All the major brands these days are making great bikes. We at Superfly may have a bias towards SCOTT bikes, but the other major brands all make great rides. The key is to find the best, nearest BIKE SHOP, develop a rapport with them, and support them. Using them and just finding a better price online will hurt you with poor warranty and service in the long run! No, you don’t need anything more than a good solid 29er bike to do well – if you can, look for a deal on a carbon bike, but the bike does not make the rider. At the top level, where seconds count, then the bike can be more of a factor!
In a world with participant ribbons, it is still an innate need to test oneself against others of similar ages. While the competition is an important element, it’s surrounding yourself with like-minded people, meeting new friends, and challenging yourself that is at the heart of racing your bike. Our society is breeding a new brood of anti-social, (loneristic)people – Put away your cell phone, get off the computer, and come see what you can do on a bike, weaving through beautiful forests, and setting new goals! It’s addictive – most people that start, don’ t ever stop! (And if they do, we usually see them reappear a decade or so later after their kids have grown up a bit!)
No. Ok, I’ll elaborate. We have run 24 hour events, with over 10,000 individual riders doing a total of 17km each, with not a solitary broken bone. That’s 170,000 kms ridden through the tight forest, with only a handful of scrapes and bruises. The average Ontario Cup event sees over 15,000 km ridden, and rarely is there anything more serious than a few scrapes. You couldn’t say that about Rugby or even Basketball! And, you get to enjoy nature – what other sports are this awesome?… none come to mind!
Look for the massive start flags! (The most annoying event question!)
When you decide to do an event, put in your information, CC#, and press the final registration button, you are making a commitment to doing the event, rain or shine (to some extent). This is not just a fleeting “maybe I’ll do it, maybe not” kind of scenario. As long as the event is held, on the date advertised, it is up to you to make sure you can make it. In some cases if we are given enough time, we can defer your registration to another event. If you ask Friday night, for a weekend event, for example, it is likely too late.
If an event is cancelled completely, you will be refunded your money minus a $5 or thereabouts administration fee that goes to the online provider, or offered a different event. If it is postponed to a different date, the organizer is not responsible for a full refund, but we will do everything we can including deferring to another event for you. Refunds take a lot of time to do and do cost money and time.
A VERY long time! The Ruppel’s have been synonymous with Mountain Biking and Racing since the mid 1980’s, when Father Ruppel bought a then very expensive Ritchey Mountain Bike in 1983. Two years later Adam did his first race, and by 1989 he raced in the first World Championships in Durango Colorado! Around then the younger Ruppel (Sean/Superfly) started to ride a little more, but got more into it in 1994 when “Chico Racing” ran our first Mountain Bike event – the “Superfly” at Durham Forest. Since then Superfly and Chico have developed more trail networks and venues than anyone, and have run the bulk of races in Ontario since the late 1990’s. Chico ran the entire Ontario Cup series from 2002 to 2011, then Superfly grabbed the reins for an additional 10 or 11 years. The 24 Hours of Summer Sosltice started in 1998, and is a perennial sell-out. We haven’t lost our passion for MTB and though we run a few less races, we aren’t going anywere just yet!