The race circuit will feature some of the local riders’ favorite trail sections, all surrounding a picturesque forest event centre with beautiful camping spots! Heads up that the Federal Government Elections have been scheduled on that day, so information about voting ahead are below as well.
About the event
Rocky Trail’s SHIMANO MTB Grand Prix Series is one of the longest-standing cross-country series in Australia. All events of the series are stand-alone races and participants can collect points for an overarching series classification!
We would like to thank the land managers and trail custodians to have us – the trails are managed by the Forestry Corporation and built and maintained by the Highlands Trails team. We would also like to thank the Southern Highlands CC for their support and input. In particular we’d also like to thank Meg Patey who will officially hand over the reigns for The Willo at this event.
Here is the rider briefing with some bits and pieces of information to get you ready for and into the mood for racing with Rocky Trail Entertainment!
If you have already signed up, it’s awesome to have you on board! Still one the fence? Online registrations are open until Friday morning before race day! Should we be getting close to selling out, we will communicate it via our website and our social media platforms.
The venue – Wingello State Forest
Offering 4 and 7 hour competitions for solo and team riders across many age categories, the Shimano MTB GP promises to deliver a fun race track that has been proposed by the local riders. Here is the proposed trailmap but changes are likely to occur and will be confirmed this Thursday – Martin is heading there to mark the track tomorrow.
Weather: Nice autumn racing on the horizon.
It looks like we are in for a crisp autumn day of racing with no rain forecast – we’ll keep you posted and this section updated in the immediate race lead-up.
You can camp at the event centre and we will bring portable toilets in.
Horse riding: Please be mindful!
Please be mindful that the Wingello State Forest fire trail network is also used by horse riders; so if you are riding in the days leading up to Saturday and on the Sunday, please be mindful of this fellow user group. Please make yourself known politely and approach them with care so as not to startle the horses. Thanks.
Launch: The Willo
Our core team has officially expanded to include Jo Parker and Bob Morris as Event Managers this year. Rocky Trail now can deliver more events for cyclists of all ages and riding and racing desires and help shape the development of Australian cycling destinations.
One of the new Rocky Trail events that we can announce is one with a long history: The Willo. The 10th Anniversary of “The Willo” will be held on 1 March 2020 and we will be the new custodians of the event. We are so proud and honoured that its founder Meg Patey entrusts us and our crew with continuing her work and the legacy of The Willo from 2020 and will do so under her official patronage.
The Willo 2020 will officially be launched at the Shimano MTB GP at Wingello with many of James ‘Willo’ Williamson’s best friends at the start line. ‘Auntie’ Meg will be among the racers of course as well, as she hands over the reigns for the Willo race to the Rocky Trail crew.
Attention: Federal Elections, 18 May!
May we remind all Australian Citizens that the Federal Elections will be held on 18 May, race day for the Wingello Shimano MTB GP. Find out how to vote early.
We’d also like to share the initiative of a very influential man in our Rocky Trail and personal lives – Hugh Kingston, the organiser of the Highland Fling, is a candidate in this year’s election. Over the last few weeks we have been following his campaign as an Independent candidate for Hume in the upcoming Federal Election on 18 May. Huw’s messages and views really resonate with us and we want to support him by sharing this campaign video on our blog.
Entertainment for visitors & kids
We welcome visitors and spectators and invite you to bring your families and kids and friends and parents and partners along to watch you race. For the little visitors we do colouring-in pages and little giveaways and free junior races – these are very simple time-trial style races around the event centre or on kids tracks if the venues allow it.
NEW: Launching the Cruzee Bike Fleet supported by Lazer Helmets
A huge shout-out to JetBlack Products Australia and Lazer Sport Australia for sponsoring our brand-new “Cruzee Bike Fleet supported by Lazer Helmets”! Now future #rockytrailracers can hop on a Cruzee bike trying it out for free, clock in a time at the kids race and catch the riding bug at Rocky Trail events – protected by Lazer Kids Nut’Z helmets. Find out all about it on our blog!
The racing – a social affair
As the owners of Rocky Trail, Juliane and Martin, we created the GP events around our favourite trails and we love that we get to discover new venues and re-discover the classics every year. From one race in 2009, the events have evolved over the years and albeit all being stand-alone races they all are part of the over-arching annual series. Riders competing in two or more events get to accumulate series points and get trophies and bragging rights for collecting most points (the best 4 out of the 5 race results count).
We created a 4 and 7 hour competition within each race and there are quite a few categories to choose from – solo and pairs across both options as well as a team of 3 category in the seven-hour.
Everyone gets results in a General Classification as well as in Age Divisions.
It has been very important to us to keep this series a set of very social races. We are attracting some of the big names in the XC racing world – often the local guns come out for a play or come along for the series to keep training throughout the year, or, as we’ve been told quite often, “we come because it’s fun and you guys put on a good show”. That’s flattering to hear, however, you must know that with our crew and suppliers, we strive to organise professional events that are safe, fair, value for money, that take you to exciting venues and those where we mountain bikers are welcome.
We want to deliver a series that is less of an elite- and winners-only-focused competition, but a positive and inclusive experience for all participants. The majority of our racers are amateur riders and we love riding and racing ourselves, so we do like to put on some good tunes and most of the time our “honorary Entertainment Manager”, DJ Nigel from Pedal4Pierce, our charity of choice, will spin not only his wheels but also the decks to crank out some tunes that will push you out onto each lap and keep you entertained as you are having a rest in the event centre.
Racing starts at 9am – pick up your number plate from 7am.
The atmosphere in our event centre is friendly, happy and inclusive and you will see that Martin is very much in charge. We have been working with most of our suppliers for years – from first aiders to marshals to caterers to photographers, it is our top priority for you to have an amazing time out on your bike and to lend a helping (and rescuing) hand if need be.
Race set up and facilities
Access the event centre and trail head from Forest Road across from the Railway Station in Wingello, then head along Caoura Road, then left into Gulph Road after you pass the Wingello State Forest Camp. The event centre is on Nyes Creek Road – here is the link to the map on Google.
GPS Code: -34.720026, 150.196929
Food & Drinks
The Daily Espresso’s will be there again with coffee and snacks.
We will have some basic spare parts for you to purchase; please bring specific parts with you.
The hard facts – what you get
We want to reward as many riders as possible with prizes across the series. Therefore,
We will hand out the prizes BEFORE the race start!
Rather than handing out the prizes we get from our fantastic sponsors to the winning riders only, we are spreading more spot prizes across the entire field. We will issue as many raffle giveaway tickets as we receive prizes from our sponsors at each race and they will be categorised according to item value. We have 100-150 spot prizes to give away for each race. Each rider with a “winning ticket” will be able to pick a prize from the “Rocky Trail Bazaar” of spot prizes. All other tickets go into the draw for a selected number of major prizes, which will differ from race to race. Having said that, here’s what you get:
- FREE rider photos by the OuterImage.com.au crew thanks to our major sponsor, SHIMANO Cycling Australia – valued at $60-100 per race
- A chance to win a prize via a raffle ticket draw (for instant-win spot prizes or major prize draw)
GC winning number plates!
Each GC winner at every 2019 race will get a pre-assigned and pre-printed number plate, which you can keep and race with for the rest of the series! It’s your exclusive race number that will be reserved for you across the entire series!
Doesn’t matter if you are racing in a different category or team across different Shimano MTB GP events, this is assigned to YOUR name and valid all season! We are trying to pre-assign as many as possible for each event, but of course can make changes on the day. Have a chat to us at rego!
Accommodation near Wingello:
You can camp at the event centre and we will bring portable toilets in. Please be mindful that the Wingello State Forest fire trail network is also used by horse riders; so if you are riding in the days leading up to Saturday and on the Sunday, please be mindful of this fellow user group. Please make yourself known politely and approach them with care so as not to startle the horses. Thanks.
Pedal 4 Pierce is our charity of choice and these guys are riding and racing their bikes for kids who can’t and raising money and awareness to cure Congenital Muscular Dystrophy. You can help out by donating at our events – projects funded by Pedal 4 Pierce support the Muscular Dystrophy Association.
A huge thanks to the continued support by our headline sponsor Shimano Cycling Australia – you guys ROCK!