Welcome to the Rodeo Labs Race Director Round Up! Over the next few weeks, as the gravel race “season” gets underway, we have decided to take on a mini-series focusing on gravel racing through the collective eyes of gravel race directors from across the country. Race directors are both the tastemakers and the police of the nebulous concept of “the spirit of gravel.” While race directors have a fantastic platform to voice their perspective for their own races, that voice is often limited to those narrow confines. The goal here is to use our podcast, as a small journalistically minded outlet with no skin in the game, to give them a collective platform to share their interpretations of the state of the sport.
Part three is just two conversations, but they are with two folks who are undoubtedly two of the most influential promoters in gravel. First up is Michael Merckx (6:15) of the BWR series. Michael started BWR as an extra long cyclocross race over a decade ago in Southern California. Since then, BWR has become an international brand, with events planned throughout North America for 2023. Then, Stephen joins me to interview Amy Charity of SBT GRVL and FNLD GRVL (46:00). Amy, and her GRVL brand, started in 2018 and immediately made an impression with the SBT GRVL event in Steamboat Springs. This year, Amy is bringing the GRVL brand international with FNLD GRVL in Finland. The race is a new venture for an American gravel brand and is supported by F1 star Vallteri Bottas.
Both of these conversations are unabridged, with the only editing meant to boost sound quality and clarity. We found that the quality of the interviews was interesting enough to run in full, so excuse the length. We won’t blame you for splitting it up! If you do, we recommend taking the break at minute 46 when the conversations swap.
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