2006 sees the fourth Rough Ride enduro in the largely undiscovered but, by all accounts, rather splendid terrain of East Radnorshire on the English/Welsh borders. The big news is a change of title sponsor – the event will henceforth be known as the Dialled Bikes Rough Ride. The Surrey-based bike company pitches itself as all about riding for fun, which is what the Rough Ride is there for, so it’s a good fit. Part of the deal includes a selection of frames to be awarded as spot prizes on the day. They’ll be split between categories (men, women, juniors) and the winners drawn from a hat. So there’s no advantage in finishing the ride first, but there is almost certainly an advantage in being female…
2005′s Rough Ride attracted almost 1,000 riders, making it one of the largest enduros in the country. The main attraction is the course, with a choice of 75 or 40km loops mainly on rocky moorland trails. The route will be changed a bit for 2006 but it’ll still be around 85% off-road with 6,000ft of climbing and, of course, descending. The 40km route has about 3,000ft of height gain on it. If you’re not sure that you’re up to the longer loop, fear not – you don’t have to decide beforehand, you just need to make a decision 20km in when the routes diverge.
Even an event as popular as this can be improved, and the organisers will be moving to an earlier, staggered start to help get riders away more smoothly and of course get them back earlier. They’ll also be tweaking a few other things – extra Portaloos on the course, improved signage, that kind of thing.
First start will be 10am on Saturday 4 June – find out all you need to know (and enter on-line) at www.roughride.co.uk.