Bicycling and skiing are seen as expensive hobbies, and I'm sure the average income of the participants is well above the national average. Yet both sports have a savvy dirtbag contingent who are able to participate in these sports by keeping a close eye on costs.
Racing can take a backseat when other life expenses: housing, car, children, vacations and constraints: work, children, start to add up.
How expensive are bike and ski mountaineering racing in the grand scheme of things? How does that break down monthly?
$542.07 or $45.17/month. This includes 5 mountain bike races, a race license, and 1 cyclocross race. A light year for me, but one that gave me lots of time to ride and hike on the weekends. Only really cost me $442 because I won $100!
Signing up for all 17 of the Alberta cyclocross races will set you back over $500 over the 2 month season. Unless of course you belong to one of those clubs that uses casino funding to pay for masters race entries.
$950 or $79.16/month. This includes the bargain $500 I paid to race Singletrack 6, but no cyclocross races as I was injured. 5 mountain bike races, and a 6 day stage race.
$630.99 or $52.58/month. 7 mountain bike races and 3 cyclocross races.
So typically about $50/month in a normal year
What about ski races over that same period?
$455.43 or $37.95/month. 6 races
$2021.17 or $168.43. $1574 of that was for racing, accomodations, and food in Verbier, not a bad price for over a week in Switzerland.
If I were to go race in Europe every 2 years for world championships, I would expect to budget around $100/month for race fees. If not, under $40/month.
What about gear? Bike stuff requires ongoing maintenance, in addition to the upfront cost. Since February 2014: I've bought a couple of bikes over that period, as well as sold some bike parts (that revenue is included). I'm very foruntate to have good support from both Hardcore Bikes and Dynafit.
Biking $4841 or $146.69/month
Skiing $4170 or $130.30/month
Travel. Hotels and flights. I've only really done this for skiing, in the summer, I camp.
Biking (camping): $278. A mere $8.69/month
Skiing (flights, hotels for races): $1714.54 (does not include the $1574 that was a bundle of food, accomodations, and race fees). $53.58/month
So totals: Biking $7242.06 or $226.34/month
Skiing (gear, races, travel) $6646.60 or ~ $261.29/month
But really, some of the biggest costs are related to driving my gas guzzling Toyota Highlander (that I just replaced) back and forth to the mountains and keeping it running. Gas has averaged $270/month, and maintenance $164/month for a total of $433.82/month. Pretty costly when you consider that I only really drive to feed my biking and skiing habits.