EAST BURKE — The Rasputitsa, an intense 40 mile unsanctioned gravel road race in East Burke, will take place April 16. The event has attracted 700 racers from as far as Colorado.
In partnership with Kingdom Trails, a mountain bike trail system in East Burke, the race is a gravel grinder which are increasing in popularity through North America and are known for their lesser traveled roads, landscapes, and overall arduous demeanor.
The race features an aggressive section known as Cyberia, a section of Class IV roads not maintained during the winter months, which generally must be traversed off the bike. Costumed mythical creatures and a feedzone of maple syrup served in shot glasses made of ice encourages riders to make it through this grueling section.
The race is unsanctioned which means riders do not need to racing license to enter. There is no prize purse, but bragging rights are awarded. Riders of all abilities have signed up and road bikes, cyclocross bikes, singlespeed bikes, mountain bikes, tandems, and fatbikes are included in the mix.
All profits go to support non-profits Little Bellas and JAM Fund Cycling.
Race organizers, Anthony Moccia and Heidi Myers, started out as two friends with a hope to get 50 riders to bike the backroads in which they live. Together they established one of the best Vermont Gravel Road Races. They created an unsanctioned gravel road race that challenge the human spirit and strength.
“More than anything we care about our racers,” Myers said. “We are at the finish line shaking hands. We are constantly seeking their advice and input. We ride with our racers. We are small town folks and never want our race to lose that small town feeling.”