"Corral Patagonia Fest": the biking festival of Coyhaique

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By Patricio Segura
With free mountain bike (MTB) clinics, training sessions for instructors, local mechanics and mountain bike enthusiasts, enduro races and dirt jump and pump truck (small circuits with obstacles) competitions, the "Corral Patagonia Fest 2023" will be held over a week, kicking off the 2023 bike tourism season in Coyhaique.
Sunday, November 26 will be the key day, starting at 10 am through the "wheel and beers" event that includes training sessions and competitions, with intermissions with open bar for attendees, plus live music.  Registration at welcu.
The following Wednesday from first thing in the morning will be the training of local mechanics at Villacleta Patagonia (second floor Horn 48, in Coyhaique), which includes guided outings during the afternoon.  On Thursday, meanwhile, will be the free MTB clinic for initiation to mountain biking, with a dirt jump presentation. All from 17:00 hrs.
On Friday at 08:30 hrs. will begin the enduro race, in the Cerro el Divisadero range, in a day that will conclude with the awarding of the winners and lamb barbecues for the attendees.  The categories are children, children's, youth, junior, elite and master, as well as ebike men and women.  Registration on the welcu platform.
The objective of the "Corral Patagonia Fest 2023" is to contribute to massify the use of bikes in recreational and professional format, for the contribution that this practice means to mitigate the effects of the climate crisis, local pollution, vehicle decongestion, health and connections with nature.  
Tickets for the competitions are available for participants and the general public, while the exhibition days will be completely free of charge.  The event is organized by Corral Patagonia and Villacleta, local companies specialized in the training, sale and maintenance of bicycles.
"The event is mostly driven by local companies.  We have been more or less since 2018 enabling trails in Coyhaique, to create a network that is available for the community of Coyhaique and obviously also for visitors in the summer," said Villacleta's legal representative, Martín Ríos Chible.  That is why they consider training instructors, mechanics, and the synergy between them and the riders of the local cycling school.  "We are trying to professionalize mountain biking in the region, but through the local community.   Basically, we want to feel that we are the owners of our own backyard, which is the El Divisadero mountain range, where all the tourist development of the region is projected for the next few years," added Ríos.
Moreover, Ríos said, they want "the authorities to realize that local companies are also capable of taking the project forward, of carrying out major events, and of professionalizing the industry from the bottom up."

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