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The Sea Otter Is coming to Canada: New, Exciting Events in a Festival-Friendly Venue

December 18, 2018

The Sea Otter Classic, the world’s premier cycling festival has been a favorite cycling festival in North America for almost 30 years, and in 2019, it grows even more, expanding with Sea Otter Canada set to take place in Blue Mountain, Ontario, just 90 minutes north of Toronto. The multi-day festival, expo and race will run from July 4 to 7, 2019, and will showcase the best cycling in Ontario, with wild races, fun for the family, and tons of bike demos and opportunities to test out the latest and greatest cycling products. Whether you’re a roadie, mountain biker, downhiller or ebike lover, there will be exciting events for you.

Sea Otter Canada



New and Exciting Race Formats

Mountain bike racing at Blue Mountain will include the ever-popular Dual Slalom, as well as Downhill, Enduro and Pump Track racing for all levels. An 8-hour XC Relay that climbs trails around the expo area will blend racing with family fun.

Unique to Ontario, road racers — as individuals or with a four-person teams — can take part in a single-day stage race comprised of three events. Earlier in the week, a downtown night-time Criterium will wow crowds, and a Gran Fondo, gravel race and more recreational rides will be open to the widest range of cycling enthusiasts.

But the real star challenges of the event will be the climbs — on- and off-road. Inspired by Phil Gaimon, the festival is bringing a Hill Climbing Championship to Canada.

To showcase the best the Blue Mountain area has to offer, Sea Otter Canada brought local elite riders out to ‘take down’ the current KOM’s and QOM’s on two of the most feared climbs in the area: Scenic Caves on the road and The Grind on the mountain bike. Both are classed as H3-level climbs, with average grades of over 9 percent for roughly two miles.

“Blue Mountain is a great place to come to ride there’s every kind of riding you can possibly imagine. There’s lift access at Blue Mountain for downhill, we have endless rocky singletrack, old-school raw mountain biking trails, and endless roads up the Niagara Escarpment, whether you’re looking for smooth pavement or gnarly gravel rides.” – Peter Glassford, XC racer for Trek Canada and Smart Athlete cycling coach

Jenn Jackson and Peter Glassford smashed the standing records, setting new Strava QOMs and KOMs and throwing down the gauntlet: Can anyone beat their times?


Sea Otter Canada

Jenn Jackson climbing Scenic Caves Road.

Sea Otter Canada

Peter Glassford ta=king on The Grind at Blue Mountain.


“Over the last decade, Blue Mountain and the surrounding area has really emerged as the true hot bed for both mountain and road cycling. My partner and I long felt that the area deserved a world class cycling festival. When the opportunity to bring the number one cycling festival in the  world to Canada presented itself, it was a pretty easy decision.” – Sea Otter Canada partner Jesper Wahlberg


Family-Friendly Fun

Sea Otter isn’t just about racing. Children’s activities, an expansive product expo and entertainment program will add to the fun of the long weekend. Local food trucks and craft breweries will be on-site, providing attendees with some of the best made-in-Ontario brews, ciders and — of course — poutine that the area has to offer.

The list of exhibitors is already extensive and is expected to include over 200 leading cycling brands, including Cannondale, Bosch, Shimano, Maxxis, Cervelo, Camelbak, Tacx, Osprey and Sidi, just to name a few.

Not only will attendees be able to scope new bike models and gear, but they’ll also be able to demo 200+ bikes from leading brands across all categories including Mountain, Road, Gravel and eBikes. Whether attendees want to grab an ebike to buzz around the base of the mountain, shred a downhill trail on a 2020 DH model or try to set a new Strava PR on the most aero of the newest road bikes on the market, there’s something for everyone.

Registration will be open soon, and check https://www.seaottercanada.com/ for all the details, exhibitors and race schedules as they become available.

Marc Landry is a Toronto, Ontario based action sports photographer. Honing his skills on local and World Cup cycling circuits, Marc has since expanded his subject matter to include several outdoor adventure sports. Marc is in his element when surrounded by the energy that top athletes radiate. The relationships he forms with his subjects is apparent in his images and is part of what defines his look. He is most at home in the mountains and his preference for long glass and elaborate lighting setups has become his signature style.

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