Running out of new and interesting event formats? No problem, just combine a few of the existing ones. The chaps at MTB-Freeride, custodians of Blandford Forum’s MTB Freeride Park, have merged the disparate fields of downhill and 24-hour team racing to come up with a 24-hour uplift DH event to raise money for local charities Dorset Air Ambulance and Joseph Welds Cancer Hospice.
The format is pretty simple – there’ll be a downhill course, lifts to the top and teams of three riders. The aim is to have one rider per team on course for the full 24 hours. Obviously that’ll require riding a proper downhill course at night, which isn’t unprecedented but is fairly unusual – take good lights. If your lights pack up you’l have to wait until dawn to carry on – some sections of the course will be lit, but not all of it.
The start is at 11am on Saturday 27 August with the finish being at 1.30pm the following day – yes, that’s slightly more than 24 hours, to give everyone waiting at the top time to get back to the bottom. It’ll all make sense on the day. There’s an entry fee of £20 per rider for club members (£26 for non-members) to cover transport and facility costs, and each team is required to raise a minimum of £100 in sponsorship. How you go about that is entirely up to you…
There’ll be camping, toilets and catering on site, although the organisers ask that riders bring enough food and water to see themselves through. Unusually for a 24-hour event, under-18s can take part but you’ll need to bring an adult with you. They don’t have to ride, they just have to be on the site. But this is in the realms of the finer details, more of which are best found on the relevant bit of www.mtb-freeride.com. Entry packs are now available for download.