Hell of the North Cotswolds – 9 April 2006
This ever popular classic event, promoted jointly by Winchcombe CC and Cheltenham & County CC will be held on Sunday 9th April 2006 starting from the picturesque Cotswold Town of Winchcombe with a mass start at 9am.
Last year the event attracted over 1,100 riders. 2006 is the twenty-second year of the event and there will be a commemorative medal awarded to all riders who successfully complete the course.
Following the phenomenal success of last year’s award Marin will again present a brand new Marin B-17 Trail Hardtail bike (worth £675) to be drawn out of the hat for one lucky under 18 year old who completes either course.
There will be a 100km route for the really keen riders and a 50km route for those who know how tough the off-road Cotswold Hills can be! The routes will be handed out in the form of written instructions and also on a printed map. The event will use a route consisting of Tarmac roads and bridleways including everything from technical rocky singletrack to rutted, possibly muddy, tracks and will offer a challenge to all levels of rider. Refreshments will be available at approximately half distance.
All riders must wear a helmet whilst participating in the event. Riders will be identified by a self adhesive number that will be affixed to the helmet.
Due to the ever-increasing popularity of this event there will be no entries accepted on the day and all entries must be received by Saturday 25 March 2006. There will be a maximum limit of 1000 riders and entries will be accepted on a first come, first served basis. It is recommended that you get your entry in early to avoid disappointment.
Entry fees are: Riders over 18 years of age, £10.00; youth riders (under 18 years of age on 9 April 2006) £5.00. Last year the event raised money that was donated to various charities including Cancer Research and the Air Ambulance. Entry forms will be available on our websites from 1 January. -Jon Whyte
Gran Canaria MTB Marathon – 18 March 2006
After a successful event premiere with 70 participants from 11 nations, Gran Canaria will present its second mountain bike marathon on 18 March next year. This time, the participants can not only combine their start into a new MTB season with a training camp but also collect points, because the Gran Canaria marathon is the opener of two major race series.
After the inaugural event this spring ,Gran Canaria’s mountain bike patron and marathon organiser Petra Wonisch has been working untiringly to promote Gran Canaria as a mountain bike destination and to make the island’s race a fixed date in the mountain bike calendar. Her commitment was rewarded this fall: at the Spanish mountain bike festival Festibike the Gran Canaria Marathon could showcase a new main sponsor, the Spanish department store group El Corte Ingles. With this strong partner on the side, the second edition of the international marathon – concomitant the Canary Championships – is saved. The winners will receive prizes to the total amount of 10.000 Euros.
Gran Canaria’s marathon presents the “miniature continent” at its best. The demanding 80km long racing circuit from Maspalomas to Roque Nublo with a total of 2,500m in elevation gain is full of breathtaking views and scenic highlights. The route leads through several climate and vegetation zones; it passes reddish canyons, spectacular rock formations, century old pine and laurel woods, striking plateaus and deep ravines. Alternatively the participants can chose the 45km distance with 1,200m in elevation gain.
If you think this sounds appealing, factor this date into your season planning and block a week of vacation, because the organisers offer great marathon-training camp-packages. For instance, one week accommodation in a bungalow (triple occupancy) incl. airport shuttle and marathon start fee costs 199 Euros per person (excl. flight); one week in a 4 star hotel (double occupancy, half board, transfer and marathon, excl. flight) costs 399 Euros per person. -Sonja Güldner-Hamel
Twentyfour12 – 22/23 July 2006
Keith Bontrager has long been associated with endurance competitions, from stage to long distance racing. Most especially he has concentrated on 24hr races, his goal of successfully racing 50 events before the age of 50 having been surpassed by some way.
It should come as no surprise then, to find that Keith is to become a technical director to a new 24hr race. By taking the most successful elements of his favourite races, improving the areas less popular and adding new elements, he has come up with a more diverse race structure than any previous 24hr event; a 12hr and 24hr race on the same course at the same time.
“After racing in as many of these as I have I’m looking forward to finally helping put a race on. I know what I’ve liked in a 24 hour race and what I haven’t, so it’ll be a challenge to put as much of the good stuff together in one event. It will definitely be fast and fun, designed for the racer in every respect.”
The completely new, purpose built venue of Lodgewood Park, Ellesmere in Shropshire, is a totally private estate and has a fully serviced campsite complete with water and of course, enough toilets and showers for all. The Twentyfour12 will take place here on the 22nd and 23rd of July 2006, with both 24hr and 12hr races being run concurrently, both races starting at midday on Saturday.
With the 12hr race finishing at midnight, it gives those riders unfamiliar with the team relay format and night racing in particular, a chance to try it out without sacrificing their chances of taking a top spot; only a few hours of darkness come at the end of their event. They can then enjoy the atmosphere of a 24hr event at their leisure and not worry about that 3am wake-up call! -Brian Buckle