Get Ready to Ride: The Iron Horse Classic
An Epic Battle Of Man Vs. Machine
The Iron Horse Bicycle Classic is Colorado’s largest, oldest and most renowned cycling event. There is no other event like it in the state. It will return from May 26-28, 2023. Find the schedule of events here.
The Iron Horse Bicycle Classic combines Durango’s rich train legacy, the area’s breathtaking terrain and a little bit of brotherly competition. The 50-mile road race covers some of the most beautiful and challenging scenery of the Southwest, following historic railroad lines between Durango and Silverton. Riders will climb 6,700 feet and enjoy breathtaking views as they pedal onward and upward.
History of the Iron Horse
It all began with a contest between two brothers, Tom and Jim Mayer. As Jim was a train engineer on the iron horse, Tom would jump on his 10-speed bike and pedal over 50 miles and two mountain passes each day as Jim passed their home in the train he was conducting. All of this to beat his brother. By the next year in 1972, Tom along with 37 cyclists joined the race, which is known today as the Iron Horse Bicycle Classic.
2023 Event Dates: May 26-28
Today, the Iron Horse Bicycle Classic is one of the biggest races in the biking world. During Memorial Day weekend, thousands flood into Durango since it usually sells out months in advance. Over the years, criteriums, circuit races, road races, tours, BMX races, trials, dual slaloms, team trail rides and mountain bike races have been added to train race. For nearly 50 years, there has been a full weekend over events during Memorial Day. For a town of around 16,000, having over 3500 participants isn’t bad.