For the first time ever in North Queensland one of Australia’s leading mountain bike events promoters will literally set up camp in Townsville. Organisers from Rocky Trail Entertainment are set to host three events for cross-country and gravity racers across two weekends at the popular Mount Douglas Reserve. A special event for schools will engage the juniors. The events are supported by Townsville Enterprise Limited (TEL) and the local Rockwheelers MTB Club. The first race will be a cross-country event on Saturday 12 September, which will resurrect the club’s infamous Hot Rock Race and once again put it on the Australian mountain bike racing calendar.
Rocky Trail Entertainment will host the Shimano Mountain Bike Grand Prix cross-country event on Saturday 12 September under the patronage of the local Rockwheelers MTB Club. The four and seven hour competition will offer solo and team classifications as the new “Hot Rock Race”.
With a 12-year history the series now offers regular events across NSW, in the ACT as well as QLD and events are planned for later in the year also in VIC. SHIMANO Cycling Australia has been the principal sponsor since the series was founded and with strong support from the cycling industry has grown to one of the major cross-country endurance racing series in Australia.
Hot Rock cross-country racing up first
The Shimano MTB Grand Prix events is described as “classic cross-country lap racing at its best” and as a “seriously fun experience”. In the current COVID-19 event recovery stage, registration patterns for the 2020 Rocky Trail season were proving events hugely popular with riders and their families, driving up demand for the series in all regions, says Juliane Wisata, one of the business founders.
“We want to bring back the legendary Hot Rock Race and make it a flagship event in Townsville once again”, says Event Manager Jo Parker from Rocky Trail. Parker explained that Rocky Trail had launched the Shimano MTB GP events in South East Queensland in August in the very challenging Covid-19 environment.
“In order to bring our riders and spectators the racing action that they love, we have rules and regulations in place, which make sure we all adhere to social distancing and gathering laws currently in place.”Jo Parker, Rocky Trail Event Manager
“We relaunched our racing season after an almost 4 month hibernation back in July and we have put all our efforts into adapting and making changes to our operational procedures, which has been essential to getting the events industry back on track”, she said and that with the current strict QLD Border Restrictions a big focus was to engage the local and regional mountain biking community to show their support for the events.
Engaging the youth with schools event
The second weekend will kick off with the North Queensland Mountain Bike Schools Comp on Friday 18 September, which is part of the Rocky Trail Academy program. These schools events not only engage youth in healthy social and active recreation but brings a heightened appreciation of nature, the environment, self-reliance, self-learning and independence, all as part of riding a bike in the outdoors. By extension, this program also engages and educates teachers and parents.
“The Rocky Trail Academy is all about fostering the grass-roots development of the cycling sport. These events are part of our junior rider development program.”Jo Parker, Event Manager
This event is all about encouraging students of all abilities to come and race with their mates in a safe and social environment. They will have an exciting racing experience and enjoy a fun event atmosphere together – great memories to share! Students will have the opportunity to test their riding ability across three skill areas on the popular Mount Douglas Reserve mountain bike trails – Endurance, Speed and Technical Skills.
Fox Superflow racing comes to town!
With Jo Parker and Bob Morris as the Race Director, Rocky Trail Entertainment has a highly experienced QLD-based Outdoor Events Management team, who have been driving the expansion into the North.
The trails at Mount Douglas were ideal for the third event, Rocky Trail’s fastest growing events series, the Fox Superflow races.
The load of exposed rock sections and the fantastic flowy descents are the perfect setting for this enduro-style event. You ride to the top of the three timed race stages in your own time and you can do each up to five times. The best race time on each counts, so in these events you can truly “race the way you ride”.Bob Morris, Race Director
Racers can practice the courses on the Saturday 19 September and race day is on Sunday. All competitors need to sign up online and this event tracks all participants.
Spectators and visitors from the public in general are kindly asked to enter their details online to request an Event Access Pass (free of charge). All event participants need to pick up either a number plate or a Race Access Pass at the main registration tent on the day.
Townsville to host Rocky Trail racers
Rocky Trail Entertainment is encouraging its visiting racers to spend the weekend in the area via a specific #rockytrailjourney Destination Guide for the area. The event organiser has been showcasing the Townsville region and invites also its local racers to escape the everyday grind.