Hamsterley women's skills courses

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County Durham MTB club Hamsterley Trailblazers is staging a pair of coaching sessions aimed specifically at women, whether complete novices or keen to brush up on rusty technique. The two courses will be held in the Trailblazers’ home patch of Hamsterley Forest, near Bishop Auckland, with backing from the Forestry Commission.

The first will be on Sunday 22 March, with experts teaching basic riding skills, followed by a second session a week later (29 March) focusing on simple bike maintenance and culminating in a ride through the 2,000 hectare beauty spot (although “spot” seems a strangely inappropriate term for 2,000 hectares – still, press on).

Vicky Chilcott, Secretary of Hamsterley Traiblazers, explained:

“Last year’s female workshops were amazingly popular, underlining that there are loads of women out there who want to give biking a go. These sessions are all about building confidence and showing that everyone can gear up for the sport.”

When Hamsterley Trailblazers set up in 2003 there were just two women out of nearly 20 members. Now over 30% of the group’s 160 roll call are women – and the number is growing.

Sessions cost £5 (free to Trailblazer members) and last up to five hours starting at 10.30am. Booking is required by contacting Vicky Chilcott on Vicky@Century.gb.com. Bike hire can be arranged through Wood n Wheels on 01388 488222. And if you miss out this time, don’t worry – the sessions will be repeated on 14 and 28 June.

More details on the Hamsterley Trailblazers and how to join can be found at www.hamsterley-trailblazers.co.uk.

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