Work on a 6.5km (4mile) XC course around Dalby Forest by The Forestry Commission is nearing completion in anticipation of the Nissan UCI XC Mountain Bike World Cup next year, should a bid by the venue to host the event be successful.
Dalby Forest is British Cycling’s preferred venue to host the global event, beating off stiff competition from elsewhere in the UK. Cycling chiefs are now working with the Forestry Commission, UK Sport and regional development agency Yorkshire Forward to lodge a bid with international cycling’s governing body, the Union Cycliste Internationale. A decision is expected in June.
Alan Eves, Forest Management Director with the Forestry Commission, says: “The new trail is a big investment for the future giving Dalby Forest a world class competition route which can be used time-and-time again. With big climbs, fast descents and technically demanding features, we’re confident it will live up to its billing as a course for the sport’s elite.”
The World Cup course will be put to the test for the first time on 10 May when it is used for the British Mountain Bike Race Series.
Over 2,000 tonnes of locally sourced stone has been used to surface the trail and sustainable techniques used to make it more durable and suitable for use in all weathers. The design was finalised after months of careful planning work. Environmental assessments were also carried out to ensure bikers steer clear of sensitive wildlife habitats and archaeological sites. Forestry Commission engineer Martin O’Vastar has worked with contractor Hugh Clixby, from Matlock, to complete the project on schedule.
The trail will be incorporated into Dalby’s 55 kilometre mountain bike network, opened in 2007 at a cost of £400,000 and touted as some of the best single-tracks in England. It also uses part of the spectacular Dixons Hollow Pace Bike Park. Some of the World Cup course will be open for public use, but other sections will be off limits and reserved for top flight competitions.
More info at www.forestry.gov.uk/YorkshireandtheHumber