The 12th BC Bike race kicked off in the Cowichan Valley, BC four days ago, and Kona Adventure Team athletes Cory Wallace and Kerry Werner are tackling the seven-day stage race. Cory, who won the event in 2016, would love another BC Bike Race gold medal for his cabinet while teammate Kerry, who just got married, is out there enjoying his honeymoon and proving to be a serious threat at the pointy end of the competition.

But ex-Kona rider, Geoff Kabush, and the other top five men are not making it easy for either of the Kona athletes with the opening three stages all favoring riders who prefer shorter courses. Today saw a little change up as the 62km day (10km longer than day three, and 20km longer than the first two days racing) is more suited to both Cory and Kerry’s endurance racing styles.

The first three stages have been very tight racing. A handful of seconds here and there, 1 minute gaps or less. Today’s stage four and tomorrow’s stage five will likely be a decisive stage with bigger gaps starting to form in the top three and those spots will be more or less solidified moving forward. Like Cory said, we have are going to try and make magic happen and widdle down our time losses. – Kerry Werner

At the start of the fourth day of racing this morning, Kerry was sitting in fourth overall while Cory was just one place back in fifth. Both riders played the long tactical game today and the lead changed multiple times as a result. Kerry and Cory rode hard and Kerry managed to solidify his second third place of the week with Cory finishing in fourth after a big 40km/h crash! The pace at the front with Kerry, Cory and Kabush has took it’s toll on the original lead pack but the two Kona riders still have their work cut out them if they want to nab that leader’s jersey. Kerry is now sitting in second overall, Kabush in first, still has an almost four minute lead on Kerry going into day five.

It’s been a hard start to BC Bike Race this year with a deep field of international racers. Kerry and I have been working together and are sitting 4th and 5th right now.  We’ve been having fun camping, hanging out with other racers and finding some good spots in the ocean to cool our engines after the stages. Three more days to go! – Cory Wallace

With the gaps between racers starting to widen it will be an exciting final three days of racing. For up to date info as it happens you can follow the BC Bike Race on twitter here or visit their homepage here for everything else.

All Photos: Margus Riga