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2023 Salty Dog, Shuswap and Backyard Ultras set to go in Salmon Arm in consecutive months

Shuswap Ultra switched to June from September, 120-kilometre option added
Ihor Verys from Chilliwack holds up the silver coin he earned by winning the BC Backyard Ultra, this one held in Salmon Arm at Little Mountain Park, beginning at 8 a.m. Friday, April 28. Verys ran for 39 hours and covered 261.3 kilometres. (Lewiston Ultra-Instagram photo)

A trio of cycling and running events will be rolling ahead with a nod from Salmon Arm council.

Council received three letters from organizer Kara Leinweber on behalf of the Salty Dog Enduro cycling extravaganza hosted by the Shuswap Cycling Club, as well as the BC Backyard Ultra and the 2023 Shuswap Ultra, both hosted by Lewiston Ultra Events.

The Salty Dog Enduro, with family participation encouraged, will take place May 12-14 with the Pedal & Pint on Friday, May 12, package pickup and Salty Streetfest on May 13 and the Enduro, U15, Junior and Salty Pup events on Sunday, May 14.

Leinweber said the Salty Dog is hoping to have the setup at Klahani Park similar to years past. Sunday’s festivities will include a community barbecue and beer garden during and after the event.

The Salty Dog has been hosted in Salmon Arm for two decades, with the exception of 2020 and 2021.

Read more: Shuswap riders make their mark at Salty Dog Enduro

The BC Backyard Ultra is scheduled for Friday, April 28, with the potential to go through the weekend.

Leinweber said the inaugural BC Backyard Ultra in 2022 was very successful and the winner, lhor Verys, completed the most laps at a Canadian Backyard event and went on to win the Backyard Canadian Championship. His performance at the BC Backyard Ultra in Salmon Arm and the Canadian Championship granted him a spot to compete in Worlds.

“Beyond amazing!” she wrote.

The event would host 100 to 120 runners and would start and finish at Little Mountain Park and the Field House parking lot. She added that she understands the soccer fields might be in use and she hopes the two sports can share space.

Read more: Winner of Salmon Arm’s BC Backyard Ultra keeps running for 39 hours

The third event, the Shuswap Ultra, would be hosted over two days, June 23-24.

“The event is testing a June event date due to low volunteer and racer turn out, competing September events in the area, volunteer burn out, highway closures, businesses closed for the season, campsites closed for the season, etc. I believe the June date will be successful and will continue to support tourism as well as draw international racers with the new 120KM distance option…,” Leinweber wrote.

On Friday, June 23 the 120-km racers will start at Klahani Park at 5 p.m. and run through the night. On Saturday, the 60-km and two-person relay racers will start at Mara Hills Golf Resort and finish at Klahani Park. All racers would be off the course by 8 p.m.

The Shuswap Ultra has been hosted in the community since 2018, except for its cancellation in 2020 and the virtual format in 2021.

Read more: Shuswap Ultra running event sprints back to Shuswap in June 2023

Mayor and council gave unanimous approval to the events, expressing appreciation for the lengthy notice, while city staff pledged to continue to work with organizers. Coun. Debbie Cannon was absent.
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Salty Dog Enduro competitor Cory Wallace, riding for Kona Canada, rounds a bend followed by Gareth Williams of team Broskis at Salmon Arm’s South Canoe Trails on Sunday, May 15, 2022. Wallace was the overall winner of the six-hour riding event, putting in 10 laps with a time of 6:17:47.9. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)

Martha Wickett

About the Author: Martha Wickett

came to Salmon Arm in May of 2004 to work at the Observer. I was looking for a change from the hustle and bustle of the Lower Mainland, where I had spent more than a decade working in community newspapers.
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