WORCA Announces Details for 'Whistler's Ultimate MTB Race: The Back Forty'

Aug 18, 2021
by Whistler Off Road Cycling Association  
The Back Forty


A Big Bad Bike Race

The first ever Back Forty, presented by Gibbons Whistler and RideWrap, is happening on September 11th, 2021, in Whistler. Riders will take on a monster course in a new 3-stage format that lets racers choose the intensity of their ride. Each stage includes a climb and a descent, the whole thing is timed, the person with the fastest combined time after three stages wins!

Want to hammer? Line up at the front and giver hell. Looking to cruise with your friends? Set up mid-pack and ride at your own pace. The Back Forty uses a chip timing system, untimed liaisons and rolling stage starts so you can ride however you want. So long as you make the cutoffs!

Registration is $99 and all proceeds from the event go to WORCA for the maintenance of Whistler's trail network.


Hammer Up. Hammer Down.

Disclaimer: this course is a punisher. 30km of rowdy singletrack with 1,800m of climbing over three stages stretching from Function Junction to Cougar Mountain on Whistler's West Side. Each stage starts with a big climb and a sustained descent, then leads into some classic Whistler XC to round it out. While the course is physically challenging, we've kept the maximum difficulty level of the trails to a single black. There will be a feed station mid course provided by the fine folks at Nester's Market.

Stay tuned for final course details dropping early next week!

The Gibbons Whistler Après

Riders will be rewarded with ice cold Gibbons Après Lager, great food and live music at RideWrap HQ in Function Junction. Bring clean clothes and a good attitude, this one might go late!

Event Schedule

SIGN IN at RideWrap HQ
8:00am - 8:45 am

STAGE 1 : 9km / 561m
Stage Opens: 9:00am
Last Start: 9:30am
Last Finish: 11:30am cutoff at end of stage 1

STAGE 2 : 6.4km / 459m
Stage Opens: 10:45am
Last Start: 12:00pm
Last finish: 2:30pm cutoff at end of stage 2

STAGE 3 : 14.4km / 750m
Stage Opens: 12:00pm
Last Start: 3:00pm
Mid-Stage Cutoff: 5:00pm
Last Finish: 6:00pm cutoff at end of stage 3
Shuttles back to Function starting at 3:00pm

Opens: 3:00pm
Last Call: ...



  • 12 1
 I don't think you can say that having an ice cold can of Gibbons Apres Lager is a reward......
  • 2 1
 : beer
  • 1 1
 : beer:
  • 1 1
  • 1 0
 I can too say
  • 2 0
 that almost every type of beer is a reward
  • 1 0
 @taprider: not if you have a gluten allergy!
  • 4 0
 Cool, keen to see the actual route.
  • 3 0
 Just waiting on final approvals. Stay tuned!
  • 1 0
 @WORCA: great format! Especially with this Covid Wave. Do you have approximate numbers you’re targeting? There will be like a four hour finishing spread with this Monster so trying to assess how many heavy breathers I’ll be around on first stage climb. Thanks!
  • 2 0
 @dr-airtime: We'll be having a staged roll-out like the NIMBY used to do. Self-seeding waves based on level of mouth-breathing commitment. We are opened to 150 riders, but may add more as we've already crested 100.
  • 1 0
 @ridingloam: Thanks. That is a great number. Signing up. Need redemption after a drop out in epic 2013 WORCA Funduro due to zero sleep the night before thanks to torrential rain on the tent!
  • 3 0
 Is there not an option to purchase a single day WORCA membership in order to participate?
  • 1 0
 Sounds like an excellent race format. Is this the first official DownCountry race?
  • 4 0
 I guess it is kinda' downcountry, but downcountry bikes might struggle on this course! It's a bit of nod to some our classic races like the Whistler Samurai with multiple hard XC stages, split by moments of bile spewing and hydration. It'll be great. The course will be a divine interplay of some of the great descent tracks in Whistler, back-to-back with some serious jank and plunder. At the end of the day, there will be no "right bike" for this event, but there will be good times and beer.
  • 2 0
 @ridingloam: Sounds incredible. I wish I was able to make it. I hope this becomes an annual affair.
  • 1 0
  • 1 0
 With the border open now maybe this could be the event to see which Mike is the better rider....Levy or Kazimer??
  • 2 0
 I wish me knees could handle this event. Brutal fun.
  • 3 1
 If e-bikes are allowed in, count me out.
  • 2 3
 dinosaur! keep your discriminations to yourself. I have a disability and cant ride a regular bike. there are many many people like me
  • 2 0
 @bigbermer: yes I am OK with e-Bike races, but I am with @chrisclarkwhistler1 (I mistakenly clicked the wrong arrow, so it should be 2+)
For racing, mixing e-Bikes with manual bikes would be like mixing Pro/Elites in with U12, with slower riders constantly being lapped (not much fun for either)
So the e-bikers should have a vastly different start time so that manual bikers are not causing grid lock on uphill straight of ways, or a manual biker struggling to clean an impossible climb is not having their rear wheel buzzed by some e-biker (no moral judgement, it is racing after all), or the e-biker brake checking the manual biker before a tight corner or technical feature that the manual biker is depending on maintaining momentum for whatever comes next.
  • 1 0
 @taprider: wtf; who said mix; sep category for ebikes,
  • 1 0
 @bigbermer: I never wrote everyone would be in the same category. I'm ok with a separate e-bike race, but not on the same trail at the same time as a real bike race. For this, it realistically would require two separate days
  • 1 0
 Course looks like a lot of fun
Almost like the old Funduro
Any No Dabs climb bonuses?
  • 1 1
 So, Back Thirty?
  • 2 0
 Well, if we include all of the connector transfers, we're at 40. If you wanna' ride to the after party from the finish line, more than 40.
  • 1 0
 2013 WORCA Funduro Epic was, like a 30 and I remember stuffing 5 bonked riders into my Van to shuttle back to Function. You'll want the shuttle!
  • 1 4
 Can i ride my ebike?
  • 2 1
 This will be a last minute update.... ok, not last minute, but maybe a later announcement. Keep watching the worca website under 'events'. Our insurance has always stipulated that our events could not include e-bikes, but we've been working on that and may be able to have an e-bike category. The way insurance is written for us, is that e-bikes are classified as motorized and we are non-motorized not-for-profit trail association that holds events for non-motorized bicycles. But this interpretation may be changing. Note that all trails on the course are e-bike 'open', it's just the event that does not (yet) have an e-bike category.
  • 1 7
flag bigbermer (Aug 19, 2021 at 17:03) (Below Threshold)
 @ridingloam: change the game bro! be the first to realize the economic benefit for the host city for ebike events; ebikes are an unstoppable wave.
  • 1 0
 @bigbermer: yeah mate, that's what they just said... that they're trying to...
  • 1 2
 @timmyno7: @timmyno7: congrats on typing faster than a page refresh. Mate!
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