I've expressed my bewilderment at the continued popularity of LoToJa despite its high cost (this year it's $180), no transfer policy, and heavy-handed control and enforcement.
To be fair, the route is scenic and tough, and the organizers and volunteers put on a good event. I must also acknowledge the marketing skill which keeps LoToJa as the most recognized ride/race in the state.
But evidently the LoToJa folks are still unhappy about transfers, despite previous steps to curtail the activity (showing ID at check-in, wrist bands, etc.). This year riders/racers must receive a stamp on their left calf and have it visible at the start and throughout the race. Here it is straight from the event guidlelines under "all cyclists":
20. Cyclists must have a frame number on their bicycle, wear a timing chip on their ankle, and receive an official LOTOJA body stamp on their left calf before they will be allowed to start and participate in LOTOJA. These items must be worn/visible throughout the day until arrival at the finish. Event personnel and course marshals will be located at the start and throughout the course to remove participants without these three items.In a KanyonKris exclusive, I present the LoToJa leg stamp:
You better have your mark of the beast or it's off to the gulag for you. OK, I'm exagertaing for effect, but come on, really, a stamp? If I didn't find this so funny, I'd find it sad and insulting.
Wouldn't it be better if the LoToJa organizers spent their energy handling transfers instead of enforcing a bad policy? Either they are really entrenched in the mindset of no transfers, or they count on racers dropping out.
I don't understand why cyclist keep flocking to LoToJa. Surely these draconian policies are a turn-off. I guess the allure of LoToJa is stronger than the risk of losing $180 that you have to ante up months before the event and hope you don't get injured, have to work or attend a wedding/birth/funeral, etc.
Fellow cyclists, there are other double centuries. Right here in Utah we have the Desperado Duel run by a cycling club, fully supported and it costs less than half of LoToJa. I did STP and enjoyed it - and they handle transfers even with 9000 riders.
I just don't get it.
P.S. I find it amusing that my rants are the top results when you search Google for lotoja sticker and lotoja transfers.