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Monday, 02 March 2015

The 2015 Welsh Enduro Series
 
Mike Marsden of Borderline Events and Adrian Bradley of Antur Stiniog are proud to bring you The 2015 Welsh Enduro Series.

The events will be held in the heart of Snowdonia, and in 3 of North Wales’ iconic Trail Centres, Coed y Brenin, The Marin Trail, and Penmachno. 

There will be 3 timed stages per event that will challenge both riders technical ability, and their fitness. All stages will be on existing Trail Centre trails and will suit everyone from novice first time racers to full on G.E. experts. Entry fee will be £39.50 for each round. No licence required to race, and no personal insurance needed although it is recommended. Full face helmets are recommended but not compulsory as are knee pads and body armour. The timing will be the same as the successful Penmachno Enduro last year with the dibber system, and the results will be instantly available on your return to H.Q.

The emphases will be on putting on a great event in a relaxed environment, and you will be able to ride, and race in a group of up to 8 of your friends with no restriction on riding with anyone from any category.

Entries are now live on the Borderline Events Website.

We would like to thank our Series Sponsors, Continental Tyres, Lapierre Bikes, and Alf Jones Cycles.

 Here is what Martin Astley at Lapierre had to say;
‘It's great to see a National Enduro series for Wales finally. There is no denying that Wales has some amazing riding and plenty of fast riders, so it is guaranteed to be a great series. The Lapierre Zesty and Spicy were made for this kind of riding so it was an obvious fit for us to come on board as a sponsor’.

We would also like to thank Antur Stiniog, Beics Brenin, JTech Suspension, and Purple Moose Brewery for Category prizes for all rounds.

Round 1: (Less than 90 places left) The Series kicks off on the 22nd home of Mountainbiking’ the iconic Coed y Brenin Mtb Trail Centre. We will have 3 great stages with a twist at the end of Stage 3 that not many riders will have ridden before, and will be a fantastic addition to an already awesome event.

Round 2 on the 31st  of May takes us to another thoroughbred, The Marin Trail in the Conway Valley. Stage 1 and 3 promises to be flat out descending whilst we will mix it up with Stage 2 with some technicality thrown in, fitness will be the key! Some nice additions have been made on the trails to keep more speed and get some air time, thanks to Mtb Ranger Andy Braund for keeping his finger on the pulse!

Round 3 on the 6th  of September will take us to another favourite, Penmachno Bike Trails. 2 new sections have been built recently and will be included, as well as a change to last years event with another section being used.

All events will be ridden in the morning prior to racing in the afternoon, and will be a 9-10mile loop at the 3 venues, with the timed sections ranging from 4-9 mins long so you better get training! You can book on at http://www.borderline-events.co.uk/

There will be Trophy’s and prizes for the Top 3 in each Category, and both Mike and Myself look forward to welcoming you to what will be a fantastic




Posted by hannaht at 17:39:05


Friday, 27 February 2015

New Black trail “50 shades of black” at BikePark Wales
BikePark Wales announce their newest trail “50 shades of black”. It's their longest and gnarliest black trail to date with a classic Welsh mix of rock, roots and mud.

The trail is named 50 shades of black due to the varying surfaces, topography, trail style and vegetation all within this single trail. 50 shades uses an as yet unused part of the hill on the south side of the mountain. Opening on the 27th February 2015 the trail descends the full 280 metre vertical drop over its 1.8 kilometre length.

Additionally BikePark Wales will soon be opening a new pro-line section which peels off the lower slopes of 50 shades which will be known as “Join the dots”. This new pro-line option uses natural rock ledges and boulders to create step downs, hips and doubles that will test even the very best of riders.

Check out the video edit below showing Trek World Racing rider Laurie Greenland giving 50 shades of black a test session earlier this year.




Posted by hannaht at 16:22:35


Thursday, 05 February 2015

Welsh MTB Events for 2015
Holy Moly! There has been a positive boom in mountain biking events in recent years and 2015 is set to be the best yet. No excuses this year! There is simply something for everyone including downhill, enduro, cross country, bikepacking, multi-day, beer drinking and bog snorkelling. So check out the schedule, pop the date in your diary, sign yourself up and get training.

Here’s 4 events which are entirely new for this year;

  • The Coed y Brenin Antifreeze.A multi lap mountain bike event taking place in the majestic forests of Coed y Brenin Forest Park on March the 1st 2015.
  • The Welsh Gravity Enduro. The best of the Welsh trail centres all rolled into a 4 round Welsh Gravity Enduro Series. The dates of the 4 rounds have been decided and further info will be coming soon. Round 1 is on the 14th March 2015.
  • Epic Cymru. A multi day event aimed at the whole spectrum of riders, from XC to enduro. It includes both timed and non-timed XC and downhill sections in some of the countries best South Wales destinations over 5 awesome days between 15th - 19th of August 2015. There’s lots of things to do for the whole family too.
  • Cross Mountain.Taking place on the 9th November this year in South Wales. It involves CX bikers going head to head with mountain bikers on either 35km or 55km route options.

For a full list check out our Events Calendar. And if you have one to add just let us know via the contact form.

 


Posted by hannaht at 16:32:46


Tuesday, 20 January 2015

I Bike Wales
Wales really does have it all when it comes to mountain biking. We have somewhere between 500km - 600km of purpose built spectacular singletrack, all weather trail centres, downhill tracks, freeride hotspots, skills parks and wild natural trails. Everything a mountain biker could want whatever their ability.

I Bike Wales - #ibikewales from Maia Media on Vimeo.

The 'I Bike Wales' video highlights some of the reasons people like to ride their mountain bikes and it encourages people of all ages, sizes and abilities to get out, ride and enjoy the spectacular Welsh trails. Using a selection of still photography from everyday riders on Flickr we’ve managed to manipulate these images into 3D showcasing some of the best reasons to get on your bike.

Redbull recently named Wales as one of the ‘Five places to ride before you die: The spots on Planet Earth you cannot afford to miss on your mountain bike.’ Quoting our spoilt for choice, swathe of modern trail centres and our potential scope for endless back-country escapes as two of the reasons.

Mountain biking isn’t just for adrenaline freaks either – there really is something for everyone. We have over eleven green and blue trail centre routes scattered across the country suitable for beginners and families.

It is time to spread the message that mountain biking in Wales is amazing and suitable for everyone. Get involved by posting your ride pictures, your muddy smiling faces and photos of your group rides on Facebook and Twitter, and don't forget to use the hashtag #iridewales

To find out more about mountain biking in Wales visit www.mbwales.com/

Follow us on Facebook www.facebook.com/mbwales and twitter @mbwales

Or add your images to our mbwales Flickr group if you’d like to be included in the next #ibikewales video .


Posted by hannaht at 14:01:18


Monday, 05 January 2015

Three of the Top Five UK Trail Centres are in Wales
It's official! We knew it already but Wales has been recognised as a world class mountain biking destination with three of the top five UK venues on our very own soil.   

Mountain Bike Trail community website iBikeRide aggregate all the reviews and ratings from the UK riding public that are made throughout the year into a Trail Index.  It's this rider generated info that has positioned Wales at the top of the UK rankings.  

BikePark Wales celebrated it's first anniversary in August 2014 and it's already hit the UK second spot.  Much closer in concept to that of a ski hill than your average trail centre it's been built in the heart of the South Wales Valleys. The park offers an uplift service which transports you and your bike to the top in between rides, providing your legs with a little rest before your next run down. Or if you like pedalling it's OK to cycle up too.  You pay £6 for entry or £30 (£32.50 weekends) for the uplift for the day (which then includes the entry fee) and that money goes to retain a full time trail crew to keep the trails in tip top condition. 

Afan Forest Park, managed by Natural Resources Wales is the fastest growing mountain bike area in Britain and hit the iBikeRide 2014 third spot.  With 6 superb flowing trails ranging from 7km to over 40km's and a Bike Park there is plenty of all weather singletrack worth riding.  The new red graded Blade trail launched on February 14th 2014 and is fast becoming one of the most popular trails.    

Mountain bike Mecca, Coed-y-Brenin was the first forest to be developed for the sport of mountain biking in the UK and to this day retains its reputation as the sports premier location. In the most recent poll it proudly boasts the fourth position of the iBikeRide rankings.  The MinorTaur is the most recent blue graded development which complements the established red and black rides. It's specially adapted features make Coed-y-Brenin Forest Park the first truly inclusive mountain bike destination.  

Here's the run down of the top 15 mountain bike trail centres with Antur Stiniog and Coed Llandegla making it into the list too.  

The UK’s top 15 mountain bike trails as voted by the iBikeRide UK riding public
1. Glentress Mountain Bike Trail Centre
2. BikePark Wales
3. Afan Forest Mountain Bike Trail Centre
4. Coed y Brenin Mountain Bike Trail Centre
5. Gisburn Forest Bike Trails
6. Antur Stiniog Mountain Bike Trail Centre
7. Hamsterley Forest and Descend Hamsterley Mountain Bike Trails
8. Chicksands Bike Park
9. Innerleithen Mountain Bike Trails
10. Kirroughtree Mountain Bike Trail Centre
11. Coed Llandegla Mountain Bike Centre
12. Cannock Chase Mountain Bike Centre
13. Glenlivet Mountain Bike Trail Centre
14. Forest of Dean
15. Whinlatter Forest Park Mountain Bike Trail Centre



Posted by hannaht at 11:17:47


Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Mince Pie Challenge
I’ve eaten too many mince pies. You’ve eaten too many mince pies. We’ve all eaten too many mince pies. So why not start 2015 as you mean to keep going by accepting our January Mince Pie Challenge. Sadly, it doesn’t involve eating yet more sweet filled pastry morsels. In fact it’s quite the opposite. It requires some serious mince pie calorie burning, a little dedication and some serious pedal strokes.

One of the most ambitious mountain bike routes is across Wales and is known as the Welsh Coast to Coast (#WC2C). The off road version is approx 200 miles or 320km. So over the month of January the challenge is to ride the same distance. Log your distances and see if you can make it.

Given the route is approx 200 miles or 320k that is 15 loops of the Black at Llandegla, 13.5 loops of the Blade Trail at Afan Forest Park, 23 loops of the Cafall trail at Cwmcarn, 17 loops of the Gorlech trail at Brechfa or 8.5 loops of the The Beast of Brenin at Coed y Brenin. Now that’s something to aim for...and a way to work off those mince pies.

If you can make it you’ll be in perfect condition to ride the actual WC2C route by spring.
 



Posted by hannaht at 16:37:05


Monday, 15 December 2014

Epic Cymru: A multi-day stage race
Have you heard about Epic Cymru? It will be the first ever MTB stage race to be held in South Wales launching this summer.

Held on August 15th-19th the event features some of the very best riding Wales has to offer. From the classic XC venue at Margam Park, visiting trails in Afan Valley, Bike Park Wales, Rheola & Brecon Beacons National Park. Timed XC and downhill sections will form around 40-50% of the riding, with the remainder being un-timed linking sections. Solo or optional team of 3 category and families welcome to give their support.

Entry opens on the 11th January.

For more information visit http://www.epiccymru.com/




Posted by hannaht at 11:20:18


Thursday, 11 December 2014

Winter Riding Goals

Winter is here so set yourself a goal. We all know that once you're out on the bike you never regret going but it's fair to say longer colder nights can make getting your bum up off the sofa and onto your bike a little more difficult. So set yourself a training goal to keep up your motivation. I’ve put pen to paper to give you a few ideas;

  • Are you going to ride 100, 200, 300, 400 miles over the next 3 months. Record your distances every time you hop on your mountain bike and start toting up the miles. Maybe you could promise yourself a small treat at the end of it all if you reach your goal. A mince pie...or a new bike. 

  • Enter an event in winter or spring. The Dyfi Winter Warm Up is a popular classic with the next one held on the 25th January 2015. Or if you need a little more time why not sign up to The Antifreeze. An all new multi lap challenge for 2015 held on the 1st March at Coed y Brenin

  • Visit a trail centre you've never been to before. New is always good for enthusiasm and a trail centre can be a friendly option when you can follow the way-marked trails and finish in a cafe with a bacon butty. Obviously, it’s winter so you still need to be prepared with spare warm clothes and emergency repair kit.

  • Learn a new trick. Plenty of trail centres such as Coed Llandegla, Coed y Brenin  and Afan Forest have a freeride or skills area close to the car park. If you can hone your skills in winter you can amaze your mates in spring.

  • Demo a bike you've never ridden before. Another way to spark your enthusiasm. You may find yourself so inspired you end up dipping your hand in your pocket to make a new purchase. Alternatively, just swap or borrow a mates. Full sus, 29er, short travel, long travel, fat bike...surely there one you've not tried.

  • Set up a regular night ride with a group of friends. There’s nothing like a positive dose of peer pressure to get you riding.

  • Watch inspiring films. Ok, ok...when it really is grim outside (I'm talking horizontal ice rain and -40C) throw an extra log on the fire. Indulge in a suitably gnarly mountain bike film session. The skilful riders always make it look easy and you'll be imagining yourself gliding and bouncing around on two wheels.

So what is your goal going to be?  Follow mbwales on facebook and let us know. 

Welsh winter riding

Photo by the talented @mtbcymru - follow him on twitter



Posted by hannaht at 11:04:01


Monday, 01 December 2014

Antur Stiniog - Aerial Teaser
A dramatic peek at Antur Stiniog from the skies. A seriously epic dose of riding.

Antur Stiniog - Aerial Teaser from SKYQUAD on Vimeo.



Posted by hannaht at 19:21:34


Monday, 01 December 2014

Epic Afan an MTB challenge
Mountain Bikers to attempt first 10 hour 'Epic Afan' challenge this Tuesday at Afan Forest Park.

EpicAfan

Endurance Mountain bikers Ant White, Matt Jones and Scott Cornish will be the first to attempt to ride every mountain bike trail in the Afan Forest Park, back to back, in just 10 hours on the 2nd December.

The trio will be the first ever to complete the two-wheeled 'Epic Afan' challenge which will see them pedal 85 miles over 8 challenging trails in just 10 hours. It will be a battle of fitness, riding ability and endurance with the final hours of the challenge taking place in darkness.

The riders are all experienced, long distance mountain bike racers and look forward to both completing the grueling ride and establishing the event as a new challenge that other riders can aspire to.

Matt Jones said, "I'm excited about the challenge, not just for the actual riding but because it has the potential to become an annual event that others can attempt. I'd like it to become a bit of a winter challenge for nutters like us to keep fit in the off-season and see who can set the fastest time."

The Afan Epic challenge will start at 8am on Tuesday 2nd December with all three riders aiming to complete the ride by 6PM. They will start riding on the new and technically demanding Blade Trail, before moving on to Skyline and making their way around the remaining 6 trails.

Support for the ride is being provided by Exposure Lights, Mulebar and Weldtite.

Messages of encouragement can be sent by Twitter using #epicafan


Posted by hannaht at 17:11:51


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