Over 4,000 cyclists descend on Emporia for UNBOUND Gravel

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EMPORIA, Kan. (WIBW) – More than 4,000 cyclists will begin descending on Emporia on Thursday, June 2 for UNBOUND Gravel.

Life Time, coordinator with UNBOUND Gravel, said the ultra-endurance bike race known as the “World Gravel Series” will return to Flint Hills on Saturday, June 4.

Life Time said more than 4,000 cyclists – the largest field size the event has seen – will start and end in historic downtown Emporia. Runners ages 10 to 89 will descend on the city from all 50 states and 48 countries.

Coordinators noted that distance options for UNBOUND Gravel include a Junior, 25, 50, 100, 200 configuration, and a grueling 350-mile single loop. He said the 200-mile course will serve as the signature distance the event was founded on in 2006.

Life Time said the race will be held primarily on gravel and dirt roads, some of which receive little to no maintenance year-round and are primitive in nature. He said cyclists are required to prepare their bikes, their bodies and their minds to be ready for all possible conditions.

In 2022, Life Time announced that a new southbound course would debut and many of the best riders in the world – including those from the Tour de France – would take to the starting line.

Coordinators also said the weekend of the event will feature the All Things Gravel exhibit presented by the City of Emporia, which will span two blocks downtown. The exhibition will include over 300 vendors of major outdoor brands, food and an outdoor cafe.

While the race begins on Saturday, the events to prepare and celebrate will begin on Thursday, June 2.

The UNBOUND Gravel program is as follows:

Date Time The description Location
Thursday 9am Group tour hosted by GU Energy Labs, Craft Sportswear, Gravel City Roasters and more RSVP: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/shakeout-with-gu-energy-labs-gravel-city-roasters-kenda-tires-and-craft-tickets-344379316807
Thursday 2 p.m. – 7 p.m. All Things Gravel Expo presented by the City of Emporia Located in the 600 and 700 blocks of Mechanic St.
Thursday 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. Withdrawal of parcels from all distances Lyon County History Center, 711, rue Commerciale.
Thursday 4 p.m. Group tour organized by Stamina Racing 8th and Mechanic St.
Thursday 5 p.m. Screening of the film Stronger Together – Alexandra Houchins Granada Theater, 807 Commercial Street.
Thursday 6 p.m. Group ride organized by the Major Taylor Cycling Club Kansas City 8th and Mechanic St.
Thursday 7 p.m. Welcome party organized by Chamois Butt’r & GU Energy Labs Mulready Pub, 717 Commercial Street
Friday 5:30 Sunrise Ride in Memory of Moriah Wilson 8th and Mechanic St.
Friday 10am Group ride organized by Chamois Butt’r, GU Energy Labs, Marley Blonsky from All Bodies on Bikes and Molly Cameron from RIDE Group 8th and Mechanic St.
Friday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. All About Gravel Exhibition Blocks 600 and 700 of Mechanic St.
Friday 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. Withdrawal of parcels from all distances Lyon Co. History Center, 711 Commercial St.
Friday 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Collection of XL packages Lyon Co. History Center, 711 Commercial St.
Friday 3 p.m. Departure XL 6th and Mechanic St.
Friday 3:30 p.m. “The Start Party” presented by Kuat Racks & Dynamic Discs 912 Commercial Street
Friday 4:30 p.m. Riders meeting Granada Theater, 807 Commercial Street.
Saturday 6 a.m. 200 mile start 6th and commercial street.
Saturday 7 a.m. 100 mile start 6th and commercial street.
Saturday 6 a.m. – 8 a.m. 25/50/Collection of Junior packages Lyon Co. History Center, 711 Commercial St.
Saturday 8:30 am Start of the junior race 6th and commercial street.
Saturday 9am Departure of 25 and 50 miles 6th and commercial street.
Saturday 12 p.m. The Finish Line Block Party Begins 8th and commercial street.
Saturday 1 p.m. Rewards – Junior Race Granada Theater, 807 Commercial Street.
Saturday 6 p.m. Rewards – 100 miles Granada Theater, 807 Commercial Street.
Saturday 7 p.m. Awards: Grand Prize of Life Granada Theater, 807 Commercial Street.
Saturday 10 p.m. Happily ENVE after party 8th and commercial street.
Sunday 8am Rewards: 200 miles and XL Granada Theater, 807 Commercial Street.

For more information on UNBOUND Gravel, click HERE.

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