Team CoreCo International Fatbike Athletes April 18 2015
From the jungles of Costa Rica to the hills of South Africa to the frozen tundra of Alaska, Team CoreCo will go just about anywhere to ride their fat bikes. They are a non-profit organization based in Costa Rica that supports clean competition in some of the world's most grueling bike races. And they have the most fun doing it too. Here is some background on their team from Will Muecke, one of their founders:
"The motto for Team CoreCo is that we develop the best person, first, and the best athlete, second. That means that we drive an agenda to promote leadership and examples of best practices in the community through our cycling team and drive for a diversity of talent rather than single out specific metrics like podium finishes which can result in a more exclusive and less open feel to the team. We hope that the riders of our feeder programs find that racing under the Team CoreCo flag is an aspirational goal, and that the path to race with Team CoreCo at premier races is attainable to anyone that puts in the hard physical work, but also remains connected and productive in their local community."
What kind of fun do they have? Well, every fall they race in La Ruta de Los Conquistadores which is one of the most grueling bike races in the world. It's a 150+ mile race with 29,000 feet in elevation change. In one of the most vibrant places on planet earth, Costa Rica. It's such a tough race that the team runs camps throughout the summer to prepare. This is on their home turf, so they take this race seriously. And last year one of their racers, Jeff Herrera, won the whole thing. This is a video from Dirtwire TV about his Borealis Yampa CF bike. We even get a little shoutout about the WiseCracker around 2:45.
This year they also ran a team in Absa Cape Epic down in South Africa. This is a huge week-long endurance race over 450 miles and 50,000 feet of elevation change. To make sure they were fully prepared this year, they went with a full pink theme for their kit. If they're going to fly halfway across the world to race in their fat bikes, they need to look good.But there's actually more to it than just racing, they also find a way to connect to the local community. At Cape Epic they partnered with JAG Foundation which is an organization working to combat bullying, create mentoring relationships and and add support to the townships of Western Cape of South Africa. In their words:
"We feel that the team should commit to doing just a bit more that showing up and race, and our hope is that no matter where we go, and no matter where we ride, domestically or internationally, that we make an effort to connect to the local community, and then work to leave a positive impact behind us after we leave."
But sometimes you're not in the mood for one of those hot climates and want to test your mettle against the frigid cold and ice. Maybe something like -10° F to cool off? Kathi, a 3-time winner of this 350-mile race runs an annual Iditarod Training Camp to teach you the techniques for surviving in the extreme cold. Save your fingers, nose and toes! In 2014 Team CoreCo raised over $2500 to support Bering Sea Women's Shelter as part of a group effort for the ITI race.
Their equipment is top notch and at the end of the season in 2013 they decided to transition to fat bikes. They struck up a relationship with newcomer Borealis and started testing out their equipment. They now race both of the Borealis bike models, the Yampa (rigid fork; for XC or adventure/endurance racing) and the Echo (built around the Bluto 100mm travel front shock from RockShox; primarily for endure and downhill racing). The design and feel of the Borealis bikes as frame geometry and material selection optimizes the key aspects of weight, strength and performance. According to Will Muecke, "The machines that Borealis builds are race rockets – versatile, responsive and super-‐fun to ride."
But it's not all about racing in the worlds hottest, coldest, longest and most challenging races. They also know how to relax as well and are big fans of WiseCracker just let we are huge fans of theirs: "Nothing better than grabbing something super cold, walking over to my bike, and hearing the hiss as I crack the seal on the cap with my Wisecracker, of course!". Here's a little video Will put together after a long race day:
How to open a cold beer after Stage 6 at the 2015 Absa Cape EpicPosted by Team CoreCo on Saturday, March 21, 2015
The team is big on inclusion, Will recently shared a great post about the important of enjoying the ride you have:
"What is important? Certainly not the bike you ride. Not the make or the build group or whether it is carbon or not. It does not matter that you ride tubeless, or that your bike is over 30 lbs. It does not matter if you ride every day, or week, or month...or if you ride snow or dirt or race long endurace races or just spin around the block or go shopping on your fat bike. It does not matter who you are, where you come from, what job you have or how much you earn. It does not matter if you are male or female, what nationality you identify with or what gender or race. None of this matters. At all. What does matter is that you connect with us and that we connect with you. That we share the good and the bad and that we have a community that supports our silliness of fat bikes, because that silliness is good and positive and powerful. That silliness levels the field for us all, turns us all into smiling eight-year-olds, again, and some of us might actually be eight-year-olds, still. That silliness connects us to happiness and inner freedom and to good, clean fun. And that silliness connects us to each other. And that is what really matters. Ride on. Ride fat. Have fun. Cheers, everyone."
- Team CoreCo pic - Will Muecke
- Dirtwire TV video - Thom Parsons
- Absa Cape Epic pic - Dominic Barnardt
- Iditarod Trail Invitational pic - Kathi Merchant
- Team CoreCo pic - Will Muecke
- Team CoreCo WiseCracker video - Will Muecke
- Costa Rica Training Camp Day 1 Recon - Will Muecke