Kirkwood to host bike race bonanza this month
HAVING manoeuvred several challenges regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, the Multitrade Building Hire 6 Hour Mountain Bike Race will return for its fourth instalment this month.
Hosted by the Gladstone Mountain Bike Club at the club’s park in Kirkwood the family friendly event challenges competitors to complete as many laps as possible over six hours.
This year is shaping up to be the biggest event yet with a new shorter course and three-hour enticer option.
The unique race format allows participants to pace themselves with breaks between laps and enter as a team.
Social distancing requirements have boosted rider numbers on the Gladstone Mountain Bike Park in 2020.
Club President Ollie Saare is encouraging everyone to have a go at the six-hour race.
“A six-hour race sounds intimidating but the format really has something for everyone, you can compete in a team or sample a bit of the excitement with our new three-hour option,” Mr Saare said.
Participants are able to take unlimited breaks between laps to take on food, hydration or even a massage for those lucky enough to have a supportive pit crew.
Riders will start the race at 2pm on Saturday, August 29 and have until 8pm to complete laps.
Mr Saare said they would need to charge their lights for the last laps after sunset.
“Experiencing the park after dark brings a real sense of excitement,” he said.
This year’s fast flowing course covers 7.4km of some of the less well-known trails in the park.
Mr Saare said they have taken on board feedback from previous years when designing the course.
“This year’s course is shorter with less climbing and will take the average punter between 30 and 40 minutes to complete, this means teams will be able to swap riders more regularly,” he said.
The course has been marked out on the trails for those wanting to try the course before entering.
Local mountain biking legend and three-time winner of the event Michael England had some tips for the event’s participants.
“Best option for these six hour events is to bring plenty of mates and enjoy the Race Base’s atmosphere, music, food and laughs while cruising around our club’s completely marked race loop,” he said.
“Time flies when you’re having fun.”
Mr England said the group hoped to continue growing the event.
“We have been really fortunate to have some great local businesses come on board as sponsors,” he said.
“Multitrade are back as title sponsors and Mathersons Crane Hire, M1 Cycles and McCoskers have also come on-board.
“In future years we want to grow the event by having camping facilities for those coming from out of town to grow the atmosphere, our sponsors share this vision and are keen to help us achieve it.”
Last year’s solo men’s winner Sean Hall is looking like the red-hot favourite to take out this year’s prize.
“I’m looking forward to racing after most events were cancelled due to COVID, its fantastic to have such a great event in our own backyard,” Mr Hall said.
In the mixed team category, husband and wife duo Kirra and Reece Kyte are also looking very competitive.
Riders have until midnight Saturday, August 8 to take advantage of early bird entry pricing and final entries must in before 5pm on August 28.
More information and entry details can be found online on the club’s Facebook page, Gladstone MTB Inc.