Javelina Chase crosses state lines with cycling races, fun ride, 5K trail run, and children’s bike rodeo

Contributed Photo By Terry Johnson: The Javelina Chase will feature expanded ‘Ghost Mine Rumble’ mountain bike races this year.

Contributed Article

DUNCAN – On Saturday, April 6, the Javelina Chase opens its sixth year with expanded “Ghost Mine Rumble” mountain bike races on wildflower-strewn back roads in Arizona and New Mexico, starting and ending in Duncan. This year’s offerings include 20-, 40-, 60- and 100-mile courses, and will include the Ultra-endurance Mountain Bike State Championships for Arizona. There will be cash and other prizes awarded, with an equal payout for men and women winners.

The ever-popular free bike rodeo for children 3-13, staged at the Greenlee County Fairgrounds by the Duncan Wildkats PTA and Bikeworks of Silver City, New Mexico, will open for registration at 8:30 Saturday morning after all the racers have departed. For safety, families attending the bike rodeo must enter the fairgrounds by the north gate on Highway 75.

Contributed Photo By Terry Johnson

On Sunday, April 7, a new “Butterfield Overland Gravel Grinder” fun bike ride will cover 25 miles of historic, scenic terrain south of Lordsburg, New Mexico. The ride starts and ends at the Shakespeare Ghost Town and passes the tracks of the historic Butterfield Stagecoach route.

A 5K Trail Run takes off from Shakespeare after the cyclists have left.

Registration links for the cycling events and the 5K trail run are on the Javelina Chase’s website, www.javelinachase.com, and at swsportsreg.com. Runners in the 5K and walkers may register Sunday morning at the start/finish line at Shakespeare Ghost Town. All information is on the event website.

Free ride Sunday for those who race Saturday

To help draw cyclists to the new route near Lordsburg, the Javelina Chase is offering free registration for the Sunday gravel grinder to all riders who have participated in the Saturday mountain bike races. Riders who plan to ride both days should register only for the Saturday event and then bring their race number to the Sunday event for free admission.

Registration for the children’s bike rodeo is all on-site at the Greenlee County Fairgrounds from 8:30 to 9 a.m. on Saturday, April 6t. Parents or guardians must enter the fairgrounds by the north gate on Highway 75 and must stay to supervise their children.

The Javelina Chase website features videos of the mountain bike races and Children’s bike rodeo, along with video and stills from last year’s road races and other events. The all-volunteer committee directing the Javelina Chase suspended road racing in 2019 due to high costs for both law enforcement and signage on state highways. “The Chase” for adult and teen cyclists is now focused on off-road cycling, both mountain and gravel bike grades. Off-road cycling events nationwide are seeing greater interest as registrations in road races fall.

The Butterfield Overland 25K fun bike ride and 5K trail run signal an expansion of the Javelina Chase into historic and highly scenic areas of far southwestern New Mexico, actually passing the tracks of the Butterfield Overland Stagecoach route of the mid-19th century. The expansion reflects lively cooperation between the Duncan, Arizona, and Lordsburg, New Mexico, business communities and governments in developing the annual cycling events.

The children’s bike rodeo continues under the direction of the Duncan Wildkats PTA with BIkeworks of Silver City, New Mexico. As in years past, it offers a safe, fun course on the fairgrounds for young riders, along with free bike repairs and helmet giveaways. Loaner bikes will be available. Children will be able to see the winning racers fly across the finish line at the fairgrounds. See the full schedule at www.javelinachase.com.

Javelina Chase ‘Ghost Mine Rumble’ Race Video By Desert Lavender Design

Local governments and others in the region have given generously to help make the Javelina Chase a success. Donors and supporters include United Way of Graham and Greenlee Counties, Greenlee County, Hidalgo County, Town of Duncan, City of Lordsburg, Greenlee County Sheriff and Hidalgo County Sheriff, Lordsburg-Hidalgo County Chamber of Commerce, Freeport McMoRan, Greenlee and Hidalgo County EMS, Duncan Valley Electric Co-op, Greenlee County Fairgrounds, PHI Air Medical, Valley TeleCom Group, Hammer Nutrition, the Simpson Hotel, John and Wendy Payne, Hilda’s Market, Rock-A-Buy Rocks & Gifts, Duncan Woman’s Club and the Clifton Hotel.

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