Six must-ride UK mountain bike events of 2013

Now that we’re starting to settle into 2013, it’s time to look ahead and start putting a few goals in that shiny new calendar that mum gave you for Christmas.

To give you a little inspiration, I’ve picked six of the most fun UK events that will be finding their place onto my calendar, and I reckon will be right up your street too. These are chosen as they all combine ‘festival’ atmosphere, they aren’t too serious on the race track and because of their reputations as having staged successful events in the past.

The Mondraker Gravity Rally takes place in July and is one of our top picks for the year.

Merida Brass Monkey, Tunnel Hill, Surrey, 13 January

Get your year off to a lactic acid induced start with the last round of Gorrick’s Merida Brass Monkey long distance cross-country race. Pick from 1, 2 and 4 hours and expect a course full of fun singletrack climbs and descents that will take your mind of the searing pain from your legs. This event fills fast so enter online asap to be sure of getting a ride.

More information here.

12/24 Hours of Exposure, Reading 11-12 May

Now in its fourth year the UK’s first and only dedicated solo 24-hour race (now with added 12-hour option) moves south to its new home at Wasing Park near Reading. Relocating from Newcastleton will upset some people that favoured the challenging and technical course, but there’s no denying the new location makes it more accessible.

More information here.

X-Fusion Enduro 1, Forest of Dean, 16 June

Back with four events this year, the X-Fusion enduro series is a good introduction to anyone wanting to try out this new enduro format of riding. Several of the Bike Magic team took part in 2012 and found a well organised series that is suitable for trail riders looking for a new challenge. The Forest of Dean round looks like the pick of the series, but the opening round on the Quantocks could also be a ripper.

More information here.

The South Downs Way Lemming Trail 29-30th June 2013

The South Downs Way has been a draw for mountain bikers seeking a long distance challenge for decades. If you’ve never ridden the full route, the Lemming Trail event is the perfect way to change that. Organised by Trail Break, has been going since 1996 making it one of the longest running UK mountain bike events still going.

More information here.

Mondraker Gravity Rally enduro, Exmoor 6-7 July

If you’re keen to see what the rapidly growing enduro scene is all about, the Mondraker Gravity Rally returns to the tough and steep trails of Exmoor and, providing they smooth out the wrinkles in the event’s debut running last year, promises to be an event not to be missed. £40 for the first 300 entrants, getting you two days of riding and full chip timing, plus free Exmoor Ale and a free pair of RWD brake pads.

More information here.

Brighton Big Dog, Brighton 10 August

Brighton’s premier mountain bike event is the now classic Big Dog. A couple of years since it first launched this is one of the best 6-hour marathon mountain bike events anywhere in the UK. With a twisty and fun singletrack laden course, slick organisation, laid back vibe and fish and chips to finish on the beach in the evening, it’s a event every mountain biker should do once.

More information here.

Already entered a few events? Why not share them with us in the comments section below?

  1. Mad Pierre

    All very southern!

    1. James McKnight

      Dave A showing his southern softie colours?! Which northern events do you think should be in Mad Pierre?

      1. sean wratten

        Whinlatter challenge is a good event. seems to be attracting some good riders too. very technical with alot of climbing. whats not to like. yours truly . . sothern softie !

  2. paulhaysom

    Strathpuffer I imagine would be a tough’un for those north of the border

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