Wed 3 July 2019, 10am
I’m really excited that ‘my’ Diamonds in the Dirt event will be held for the fourth time on 6 July 2019 – I invite you to join me at one of my all-time favourite spots to ride: at Awaba MTB Park!
Awaba MTB Park is the home track of the local Hunter Mountain Bike Association and they have done an incredible amount of work on these trails over the past two years – I’m sure you will love it as much as me!
I dreamt up this event for women like me who love the outdoors and to ride their bike. We welcome all women to join in the fun – it doesn’t matter if you’re young or old, have kids or not, prefer lycra or baggy shorts, whether you’re into pink or not at all. Whether you’ve just started riding or never participated in a mountain bike event before. I want you to come, if you love racing to share your passion for riding and pass on that racing bug. You should come if you want to give yourself a challenge, like me!
Are you still on the fence? You can sign up until Friday morning/midday still!
And hey, let’s get the boys to come as well! Let them support you or come out for a ride as a roaming marshal or look after the kids – there’s great kids trails at Awaba and they can run a few fun kids races for them. They can help with mechanicals and timing and make sure we won’t have to worry about anything but staying upright on those bikes.
Sounds like a plan? – So, here are some more bits and pieces to note ahead of the event day and I’m looking forward to seeing and meeting you all at Awaba!
We have been monitoring the weather closely via multiple platforms these last few days and there are a few showers forecast. Whilst the chance of showers is relatively high, the forecast amount is very little (1-5mm for the region around the park) and based on our experience at the Awaba venue we will definitely go ahead with the event. – The Awaba trails are very well built and will hold up well even if there is a bit of moisture on them. We do recommend that you bring a wet weather jacket and we will have our big Red Bull Wigwam tent in the event centre for cover if need be.
So in summary, we are not very concerned and are looking forward to a great event!
How to get there – Awaba MTB Park
There is a description of how to get to Awaba on our website – the entry into the park is not far from the Freemans Drive Exit on the M1 between Sydney and Newcastle.
Coming from Sydney:
Head up the F3 freeway towards Newcastle (Highway 1).
After about 100 km take the exit toward Freemans Dr.
Turn right at Freemans Dr and drive for 4.6 km.
Turn right at Mount Faulk Rd and continue for 2.4 km.
From there you can see the MTB Park signs.
Will be open until Friday before the event at 8am – please check out the categories on our website. If you’re unsure, pick one and we can always change it when you get there on the day, if you want to have a chat.
- 1x FREE Rocky Trail water bottle
- All your race photos by OuterImage for free (see below for some teasers!)!
- Fully marked riding circuit with race marshals to look after you
- Personalised number plates
- On-site parking close to the event centre
- On-site toilet
- Professional First Aiders and medical support on course and the event centre
- Professional timing with detailed category results – LIVE results online
- Top three category prizes
It’s a 3-hour race for everyone and a 2-hour race for the U15 solo “Princesses”. As a solo rider you can race at your own pace and put in as many laps as you want or can do in the race time. Every lap started before the three- or two-hour mark still counts and you may finish it.
In a team, it’s a relay-style race – only one rider per team may be out on track at any time.
We have quite a few ‘diamond’ categories, hoping to suit a wide range of riders – from experienced to confident to up & coming ones, as well as junior riders. There are also junior and adult relay team categories and everyone is doing three hours, apart from the junior solo riders – they are doing 2 hours. For the 2018 edition we will also be running an e-Bike category!
eBikes welcome at Diamonds in the Dirt! – We have had quite a few inquiries about it and with Juliane being a very enthusiastic supporter of e-Bikes we are more than happy to put it on!
“I have always had more passion than fitness for mountain biking, even before I had a baby. I’m slowly getting back into. I’ve done a few e-Bike rides and absolutely loved it! My husband and I really enjoy riding together, however, keeping up with him is a real challenge, especially these days. Last year we did a 6 hour mountain bike tour in the Austrian Alps and I had hired an e-MTB and what fun it was to pedal beside him, having a chat during a one and a half hour ascent! So, I’m all for it!”
Tick the YES box towards the end when asked about e-Bikes during the online registration – at this stage the plan is to have an “Open” category with all e-Bike riders in one classification. If we do get teams signing up as well, we can add that too.
Thanks to all those amazing women out there spreading the word about the event, with the HMBA and Hunter local girls leading the charge!
Race track at Awaba
The race track is short and sweet – we decided on the YELLOW loop at the Awaba MTB Park to make sure that all of our event participants – young and young at heart as well as regular and not so regular racers are going to have fun.
Based on the registration comments we will also have quite a lot of mountain bikers that are first-time racers, so with that in mind we picked a 6km loop – the track maps have been updated on our website.
Short description (incl. section names for those who know Awaba):
You start at the container in the main car park and head towards the XC trail head (you will see a yellow arrow among others). The first section is called “Siberia” and it is a loop that will bring you back towards the top of the car park (near toilets), however, you will keep riding along a beautifully new section and towards the Awaba tunnel. Just keep following the yellow loop, after tunnel you will cross a bridge and head up a few gentle switchback turns – one one of these you’ll turn right (yellow arrow and “Car Park” sign). What follows is a fun descent that brings you into some singletrail and back to the car park. So the trail sections are:
- Rock Turn
- turn right after Anthill onto Frogmouth Rd/Yellow Loop
- Wayne’s World
- Chem Trails
- Mike Hill .. and you’re almost back.
Some images to give you an idea – if you have any more questions, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on 0416 737 972
Race start is at 10am – arrive from 8:30am to pick up your number plate, a nice and relaxed start to the day.
Our Rocky Trail Women’s Ambassador Gwynn McLeod will join us at the event too and you can have a chat to her about anything mountain bikes and racing before the event! – Gettogether at the FIZO Mechanics Tent from 8:30am!
We’ll do the kids races around 11am – we will do a time trial on a 100m or so loop right near the car park going around rocks and in between trees for the little ones. If we have some bigger kids (say aged 10 or up), there is a junior loop (around 700-800m) as well. Everyone gets to stand on the podium and we’ll have a little something for everyone.
We will reward the top-three riders in each category with some bling.
Catering, food and drinks
We have had our official caterer, the “Daily Espressos” crew confirmed to look after us all day and everyone can grab snacks from our Rocky Trail “Feed Station” – we’ll have GU gels and fresh fruit for you to buy during the race!
We will have the Fizo Cycling Crew on-site to help with basic mechanical problems. Please bring spare tubes. Always good to bring a small pump or CO2-canister with you out onto the lap and a tube, however, the lap is 6km, so should you have a mechanical it’s easy to head back to the event centre for assistance. Plus, we’ll have marshals from the Club and the local coaches from Momentum is Your Friend roaming out on track too who can help out.
Please bring your own water with you – the caterers will have bottled water, but we recommend you bring your own to refill your water bottles.
There are basic bush toilets set up at the MTB park.
Camping on-site? Not a problem at all. We will have a coffee van organised in the morning of the event day. There are public toilets (basic bush toilets), but please bring your own drinking water.
For further accommodation options, may we refer you to the local tourism portal:
Plenty off-road parking available.
How to prepare for the event
This advice is based on my personal experiences of going to a MTB event or race. I am not a certified MTB coach, however, can recommend the following:
- Get a good night’s rest (…I have a 21-month old toddler. Scratch that.)
- Have your bike ready to go with working brakes and appropriate tyre pressure (I run about 35 psi in mine) – note, you can have a chat to us at the event centre and at the mechanics tent to fine-tune some things if need be before the start.
- Treat yourself to a healthy dinner – lots of vegetables and some form of protein. Don’t skip on the carbohydrates either. Drink plenty of water already on the day before the event. Mind you, the weather won’t be that hot yet, but being hydrated is important for any physical excercise.
- A hearty breakfast is in order on race day – think eggs or muesli or porridge and bring some pre-race snacks. We’ll have some GU energy gels on-site for purchase and you can grab orange-quarters and bananas from our Rocky Trail bazaar.
- During your race, make sure you keep your energy levels up – I usually have one energy gel per hour of exercise and about 15 min before I start riding. Otherwise, as mentioned before, bananas are a good and easily digestible source of energy.
Finally, listen to Rocky Trail Radio!
To get ready for our Rocky Trail event vibe listen to Rocky Trail Radio via our website – our ‘resident DJ’ Mista Nige absolutely ROCKS!
The main thing is – have FUN! I can’t wait to be surrounded by like-minded women who love being outdoors and on the bike!
Cheerio, see you at Ourimbah!