The bike portion of the Farmland 5km is a rolling, rollicking circus of fun, joy, and hilarity...and a whole lot of horsepower.
It's called the Free-For-All for a reason. You're going to see bikes of all kinds, though choosing the right rig for the conditions is key. Last year, the men's podium was filled with 29er mountain bikes, but with more snow on the ground and in the forecast, don't be surprised to see even more fat bikes on the start line.
The forty minute race is sharp and quick, with the ground either chopped up or pounded smooth by a few hundred runners earlier in the day. For those focusing on the bike leg, it's not a terrible idea to bring your 29er and a fat bike and take a quick recon lap as the runners finish up. The technical aspect of the race comes more from the steep ascents and descents, as well as the snow or mud, more than anything tight and curvy.
Einstein Racing's own Arianne Whittaker took the combined title last year, riding a Salsa Beargrease to wrap up the overall victory. She'll be back to defend in 2014, alongside the men's winner Keegan Myers and a slew of contenders.
The course is largely the same, and you can check out Sean Kickbush's numbers from last year's race here.