Six hours on a mountain bike might seem like torture to some, but for the riders taking part in the Bendigo Mountain Bike Club’s six-hour event it’ll be one of the highlights of the year.
The BMBC is hopeful 300 riders will race around the recently refurbished track at Sedgwick on Sunday.
Hardcore mountain-bikers will negotiate the technical course solo, while amateur riders can team up to tackle the track.
“It’s rideable by most people, but there are some technical sections where amateur riders might have to get off and walk,” BMCC’s David Macauley said.
“It will take the average rider about 35 or 40 minutes to finish a lap, it’s about nine kilometres around the track.”
The steep, rocky descents might be hairy for some, but that’s partly what keeps Max Kettle coming back.
“My attitude is if you don’t come off at least once you’re not pushing hard enough,” Kettle said.
Kettle took up mountain biking six years ago after a motorbike accident left him with two broken ankles and he’ll ride the full six hours by himself this weekend.
Ex-marathon racer Jo Wall is one of the riders at the top-end of the field, while the introduction of a corporate challenge this year will see teams of between three and six riders battle it out taking turns doing a lap each.
“We think it’s a great way to introduce less experienced riders to a six-hour race environment,” Macauley said.
“We’ve called it the corporate challenge because we’ve already had quite a bit of interest from local businesses about putting in a team and challenging their peers.”
Riders can enter the six-hour event on the day, with registration from 8am before racing begins at 10am.
Following the six-hour race, the BMBC will hold its other big event of the season – the Golden Triangle Epic – on October 28.
For the first time the club will stage a 100-mile race, while there will also be 50km and 100km rides to cater for all fitness levels.
“The 100-miler is pretty extreme… some of the real die-hards will take that on this year,” Macauley said.