In 2020, the Sea-to-Sky Corridor will be the centre of attention for elite cyclists around the world as it will play host to the UCI Gran Fondo World Championships.
Earlier this week, Union Cycliste Internationale, the IOC-affiliated world governing body for the sport of cycling, awarded Vancouver and Whistler with the rights to host the ultimate gran fondo race in 2020.
A bid to host the race in the region was submitted by a partnership between Sport Hosting Vancouver, the Resort Municipality of Whistler, Tourism Whistler, Toit Events, and Gran Fondo Canada.
The race will be held on September 12, just weeks after the Tokyo Olympics, and effectively replaces the annual RBC Gran Fondo Whistler that year.
Thousands of riders will follow the same scenic route established by the Gran Fondo Whistler, which begins in downtown Vancouver, crosses the Lions Gate Bridge, traverses the Sea-to-Sky Highway, and ends in Whistler Village.
The gruelling closed-course race has a distance of 122 km and an elevation of 1,900 m (6,200 ft).
The Vancouver-Whistler race will be the first time the championships will be hosted in North America. The race is awarded to a different host region each year; the 2017 race in Albi, France on August 24 saw nearly 3,000 riders and thousands of spectators.
In addition to its role in 2020, Vancouver will also host a UCI qualifier event in 2019 that will include an additional time trial.