Work on a bike park in Langford named to honour the memory and legacy of a legendary freerider is wheeling along nicely, with potential completion in October.
“It’s about 75 per cent complete,” said Jon Watkin, a director with Wheelhouse Cycling Society, regarding the project on Irwin Road in Langford. The society will operate the park on behalf of the City of Langford.
Watkin said the city approached the society last year when they were negotiating land access for their annual mountain bike festival.
“Land access has always been year to year. At the end of the day, Stew Young is a sports tourism advocate and wanted (the City of Langford to be involved) in building something like that.”
A clubhouse, washrooms, showers and a bike wash are also included in the project’s original $1.4-million budget.
Langford is covering the major costs, with Wheelhouse raising about $300,000 to make it a self-sustaining operation. When completed, the park will support a wide range of cycling infrastructure within its three sections of dirt jump lines that range from beginner to expert. It will also be home to an international level pump track designed and built by Velosolutions. Paving that portion of the park began at the end of July.
“It’s fitting to name the park after Jordie,” Watkin said. “He made significant contributions and (added) notoriety to the local mountain biking scene. We approached his family about naming the park after him and they were fully on board.”
Lunn was killed as the result of a crash in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico in late 2019. He shared his passion for the sport with kids through his coaching, and was actively involved in creating bike parks and coaching camps and clinics. Part of the funding for the park comes from the Jordie Lunn Memorial Fund.
There’s a strong connection to the new park with Stevie Smith, a legendary downhill mountain bike rider who won the overall Union Cycliste Internationale World Cup in 2013. Smith died in a motorcycle crash near his home in Nanaimo in 2016.
“Jordie helped build the Stevie Smith Bike Park in Nanaimo,” Watkin explained. They were best friends.”
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