Riders to tackle trails in popular six-hour
MOUNTAIN BIKING: Central Queensland competitors are gearing up for the 11th running of the Rockhampton Mountain Bike Club's popular six-hour cross country event.
Racing will start at 2pm on Saturday on the trails of First Turkey Mountain Bike Reserve.
There are a host of categories that cater for riders of all abilities and enthusiasm levels, including juniors, novices, e-bikes, and teams of two or three.
Club president Dan Witten said about 50 nominations had already been received but he was expecting the usual late surge of entries tomorrow.
"This is the 11th year we've been running this event and it's still the highest participation we have in all our events,” he said.
"Last year we had 75 riders and I'd like to think we'd do that or better this year.
"We run a shorter course for junior and novice riders and a longer senior course for teams and elite riders.”
The novice course is about 6.5km, the senior course about 11.5km.
Witten said Saturday's six-hour race was also a MTBA Tier 3 event, meaning there were points towards the national solo series on offer.
He was expecting some keen competition in the solo male and female categories, as well as in the teams events.
"Michael England and Glen Chadwick will likely be battling it out in the solo male, with Sean Hall and Grant Burkhardt strong contenders as well,” he said.
"In the solo female, Zara Goodson and Kristin Edwards would be sure to feature if they're racing.”
Witten said the leading solo riders would complete a lap of the 11.5km course, which features a testing 3.5km climb to start the race, in under 36 minutes.
The average rider would more likely be clocking 45 to 50 minutes.
Witten said the day/night aspect of the six-hour was a major drawcard.
"Racing under lights is a real novelty for some people,” he said.
"The biggest participation, however, comes from teams. Riders can spread the workload out, get a break in between laps and freshen up.”
Online entries close at 6pm tomorrow. Racing starts at 2pm Saturday with the venue open from noon for practice and rider set-up.