News -

Australian Mountain Bike - - Contents -

The MTBA Marathon Se­ries is back for 2018, with plenty of favourites in the mix. The se­ries is re­duced to five rounds, in­clu­sive of the Na­tional Marathon Cham­pi­onships.

MTBA CEO Shane Cop­pin said the change in for­mat would hope­fully en­cour­age many more rid­ers to par­tic­i­pate across all five races.

“We re­ally hope this con­densed se­ries and par­tic­u­lar races at­tracts not just our elite level rid­ers, but also those who may be com­pet­ing in this for­mat for the first time. Next year’s se­ries will have cat­e­gories, of­fer­ing in­creased opportunities for rid­ers of all lev­els to par­tic­i­pate,” Cop­pin ex­plained.

The se­ries be­gins with the Easter In The Alice on March 31, which has be­come a must-do for many rid­ers. “With over 200km of tracks around Alice Springs you’re never more than a few min­utes from the best tracks in the coun­try,” Cen­tral Rough Rid­ers Inc pres­i­dent Paul Dar­vodel­sky said. Rid­ers will then head to Bendigo, Vic­to­ria for the Golden Tri­an­gle Epic on April 22. “The new con­densed se­ries is shap­ing up to be a rip­per with all events pro­vid­ing very dif­fer­ent rid­ing con­di­tions and gru­elling in their own way, whilst pro­vid­ing iconic rac­ing ex­pe­ri­ences. We’re glad to be part of the Marathon Se­ries for 2018,” said Bendigo MTB pres­i­dent Rim­mon Martin.

The Marathon Cham­pi­onships will be held a week later in Townsville with all points ac­cu­mu­lated go­ing to­wards rid­ers’ over­all rank­ings.

Marathon rac­ing stays in Queens­land for Round 4 with the Bayview Blast on June 10 at Mt Cot­ton in Bris­bane. “After a few suc­cess­ful years run­ning a four lap event the Blast will be re­duced to two laps but will still cover over 90kms - with the ad­di­tion of 20km of trails not used for pre­vi­ous edi­tions. Tim­ing of the 2018 round was planned to co­in­cide with NSW/VIC long week­end to help ease the race/work bal­ance for our south­ern com­peti­tors,” said race di­rec­tor Lon­nie Toia.

Round­ing out the se­ries will be the iconic Dwellingup 100 two months later. “For 2018 the south­ern loop won’t be quite the same as the orig­i­nal but will take in clas­sic trails like ‘Big Bertha’ and ‘Kenny’s Killer,” said course di­rec­tor Tony Tuc­knott. “There will be more el­e­va­tion, more spec­ta­tor in­ter­ac­tion, more fun, more view and maybe even a few more kilo­me­tres.”

It’s a great se­lec­tion of events, but high­lights the fact that Marathon rac­ing has suf­fered in the ACT and NSW – with no events that could support a na­tional level event in 2018 – not even The Willo.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.