Steamboat Springs Bike Town USA gets an injection of power with the KTM Adventure Rider Rally this weekend.
The global motorsports brand is expecting its largest crowd for the 10th annual rally, with more than 300 riders registered for the street-legal motorcycle event in Steamboat, according to Christy LaCurelle, of KTM.
The riders don’t show up until Saturday, but the bikes are out now.
Tents were set up at The Steamboat Grand with the newest models of the 1190 Adventure and 1190 Adventure R, travel enduro bikes that are street legal but capable off road.
Editors from motorcycle magazines were getting the first crack at the new models and Steamboat’s trails before the rally starts Friday.
Starting Thursday, LaCurelle said, preparation turns toward the riders who are making the trek to Steamboat from both coasts to enjoy dual sport riding.
“We go to a different location every year to do our rally,” LaCurelle said.
Last year, she said, someone suggested coming to Steamboat Springs. In October, they came to check it out before returning in May to try out some rides.
LaCurelle said area residents such as Rob Stickler and Rene Waters helped KTM with setting up routes and exploring the area.
Part of the rally, she said, is the opportunity for participants to go on guided rides with KTM factory riders. Mike Lafferty, eight-time American Motorcyclist Association National Enduro Champion, and Kurt Caselli, a rally racer, are two pros who will be leading groups across Routt County.
Riders are provided with the GPS coordinates for routes if they’d like to explore on their own.
LaCurelle said there are quite a few routes planned with some short and a few longer ones, as well. Steamboat locales including Buffalo Pass and Rabbit Ears Pass are in the itinerary.
“It’s beautiful,” LaCurelle said about Steamboat. “It’s perfect for what we do with these rallies.”
There’s plenty of mellow riding, she said, but also some challenging stuff if the riders want to branch out and test themselves. The rally also includes some technical and riding seminars.
“It’s just really nice to come to a town like this because everyone is so welcoming,” LaCurelle said.
Registration for the event has closed.
To reach Michael Schrantz, call 970-871-4206, email mschrantz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @MLSchrantz