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The Isle of Man's Premier Mountain Bike Club. Devoted to prompting all off road cycling events and trail building for everyone.
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All the latest news and information from the club.

Posted by on in Race Events

Manx 100 

I am starting my report early because there may not be enough of me after the event to be able to type, think or generally be.

Yesterday, Sunday I along with all the other competitors received an email from the organiser, who shall not remain anonymous and is Nigel Morris. Enclosed in this e were attachments, a map; instructions (six pages, but more of that later) and garmin files, so as not to get caught by any unforeseen rule or route I printed both the map and rules for digestion or indigestion depending on your disposition. The Map came in the for of  an ordinance survey map with a knuckle duster of a blue line etching its way across the Isle of Man. I can with loud confidence state that I know the Manx trails very well, 25 years of riding them often has given me a knowledge only a few possess, so I am, therefore qualified to gasp and silently protest to myself as I study the route I am going to take on race day. This will be tough it really will. 

The instructions say that we will beginning at the famous grandstand and with police escort head out through Onchan and via the Garey start the first, and quite small climb known as Honey Hill. Then via some fields and a fast road descent to Laxey shore the first of the big climbs begin as we pass King Orrys Grave and head skywards up through the 'Clarum'. A right turn just past the top and you are off down a fast descent and sometimes sketchy  into Maughold and a road section which leads to a forest descent into the outskirts of Ramsey. Some more fields eventually give way to climb number two, Skyhill and a descent down the wickedly fast Rollick Road (translated to Road of the Graves, scary). Climb number two up through Ohio Platation is not only very steep but quite long and eventually after a moreland slog brings us out to East Mountain Gate. Crossing the TT course and other moreland crossing brings everyone to a place above Snaefell Mines and a dangerously steep decent to an old mining road. Eventually after rasping along said road which is not easy you end up back again in Laxey. Chance to stock up in the local Co-op here before the arduous road section along Glen Road before a long drag up to the famed Windy Corner and a realization that gravity can be cruel. A quick moreland descent, a road slog and then a technical climb known as St Lukes, the track has a religious name as it makes you prey to the gods that it will finish soon. At the top a massive sigh of relief, some 'gentle' road miles and a chance to make up some miles because at this point you haven't travelled that far! scary. So after a traverse around Black Mountain you drop down into Ballaugh via the old End to End route known locally as Ballacob. Ballaugh Village has a shop, you may need it. Along the disused railway line you go and chance for a breather before Kirk Michael greets you. This next bit is by even the highest standards a lung buster, purgatory hill as sometimes known, but more officially 'The Baltic' and it makes people cry, perhaps literally, but ride up it and you will see. Once at the the end you will nip through a gate and onto the road. Next comes the fairly easy meander that is Glion Gill, early on on the track those opting for the km route turn off over 'Cronk Breck' to the jealousy of the others and a gently ride back to base. For the rest its carry on along Glion Gill, decent the very rough track, which is the 'Dhowse' to be fired out at St Johns. There is another shop here and hopefully its open on a Sunday. I have lost count of the climbs by now but if you are still going Slieu Whallian (or Witches Hill in folklore) becomes your next nemesis. In a recurring theme its a beast of a climb that exacts pain on all who dare. The reward is Arrasey Plantation and the first bike park graded descent, its ace. Some more climbing (just for a change) brings you out at Point 119 (locally) or Cronk Ny Ara Laa (you may see riders here coming up from Ballabeg and Earystane Plantation). Another graded and fast descent eventually puffs you out at the southern most point Colby. The climbing starts again up Ballafodda, a lane generous with its thorn bushes and doesn't stop gaining height until the aforementioned point 119! you have just rode in a painful circle. gently descending you end up at the top of Cringle Plantation and a track known for obvious reasons as the Whisky Run (you may well want to get very drunk at this point). One of the best mountain bike graded trails next through Cringle, but watch out you will be tired and one mistake could be fatal so don't lose concentration because believe it or not you are nearly there! Some more plantations, the odd gentle climb and the Old Castletown Road brings you to Santon and the top of a magical trail. You are very nearly there just a short spin down a track and across a stream, this is the magical bit as next to the stream is an old bridge, or more locally the 'real' fairy bridge. Anyway at the end of this track you are there, done, well nearly but not quite. You have to get back to the start/finish at the grandstand, Congratulations!! I reckon give or take 15 hours to ride that lot, the winner probably a lot less but for me, who is a seasoned long distance rider I reckon 15 should just about do it.

OK  I am off for dinner so more later on the instructions.

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Posted by on in Race Events

Firstly apologies for the delay, some re-installing required, along with beer and a guitar break. So, below is the race report

Corlett is new National Champion

 

Arrasey Plantation played host to the Manx Mountain Bike Club National Championship race on Tuesday 15th July. Tuesdays sunny weather helped dry the trails making for favorable racing conditions and using the End to End downhill section it made for some fast and exciting racing.

 

Taking full advantage of the popular End to End decent in the plantation the course took an anti clockwise circle from near the top car park, and with the first piece of single track only a 100 meters from the start it meant that to take full advantage an all out sprint took place straight from the off. This first piece of single track eventually spat riders out onto the famed End to End descent making for some high speed action as the course meandered and stepped down through the trees. Of course with all this hight lost, a long leg burning steady climb all the way back to the start/finish gave everyone a real test of strength before it all started again.

 

Straight from the off Nick Corlett took command of the field and as the laps swept by it was clear he was going to remain at the front and become the National Champion. Not to be deterred, Daniel Curtis put in a fantastic effort to finish under 3 minutes behind the winner.

 

All the results can be found on the Manx Timing Solutions website

 

The club would like to thank all those who helped marshal and mark out the course.

 

Thank you for reading to the end. 

Guy Whaley

 

 

 

 

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Posted by on in Website

 

10 Under the Ben 2014

 

For D.C.R (the only race colour)

 

Five members of the Manx Mountain Bike Club, Nigel Morris, Scott Morgan, John Venables, Matt Price and yours truly, Guy Whaley travelled up to the wilds of the Scottish Highlands or more accurately to the foot hills of Ben Nevis to race in the No Fuss Events 10 Under the Ben endurance race.

10 Under the Ben is a 10 hour mountain bike endurance race (actually its 11 hours in case you havn't done enough riding within the 10) where competitors do as many laps of a 10 mile course within the permitted time. The event was celebrating its 10th year and proving as popular as ever had sold out with over a 1000 competitors within the solo, pairs, trio's and quads categories. As ever there were trade stands and live music to help give the occasion more of a festival feel, and to add a little something special, the riders were firstly led off the start line by a marching pipe band (I loved that bit) then a model T ford completed the final stage ride out before all hell was let lose and the races sped off down the first piece of single track, fighting for position at the front.

Anyway, to tell you about the route it was without mincing words was a big breath stealing figure of eight, but it was more than that, so much more. The climbs were mostly done on fire roads, of which was on a fairly easy gradient, but the bits that were not were so steep it made your eyes water and required industrial strength brute force to be able to ride up. But, all that effort and pain came with a reward, a return which made it all worthwhile of course I am talking about the downhill sections. The first of these was new to the event and a carefully crafted series of rinse and repeat switch back turns and hairpins, steep swooping descents and virgin board walk all coming at you in rapid fire sequence. But trust me, the best was yet to come. The second part of the course had you climbing to the highest point and then jumping onto the world cup cross country downhill section. This part was fast and long requiring total rider concentration and pin point accuracy. Starting with tight technical hairpin corners which again came one after the other in a relentless fashion it then gave way to a more rocky, twisty, gnarly section which had you on edge the whole time as it went on and on (and on some more). At the bottom you then made your way back along a gentle fire road to the start/finish to complete the lap and give you chance to correct your teeth. And so it was that you had to put in as many laps as you can physically manage within 11 hours.

Both Nigel Morris and myself are no strangers to this race along with the pace and mental fortitude required to compete and finish, so overall within the 233 solo competitors Nigel ranked up an impressive 16th place with a time of 9hrs 44 mins and yours truly 27th at 10hrs 29 mins both with 9 laps completed. Scott Morgan, new to endurance racing also notched up and impressive 9 laps despite some serious mechanical issues to come in 29th with a time of 10hrs 52 mins. Next in was John Venables in 75th place with a 7 lap time of 9hrs 36 mins and Matt Price 9hrs 50 mins again with 7 laps and an 80th place finish.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank the Isle of Man Steam Packet for their assistance, Frazer, Spook and the rest of the No Fuss Events team for the event (and preferential parking) and Nigel Morris for driving!

 

 

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6 riders braved the thunderstorms, and biblical rain, needing Neil's promised retractable roof to stop calling out for Noah.  Unfortunately, neither Noah nor the roof appeared, so racing it was.


Conditions as you can imagine were intense.  It was a frantic start with the pre lap prequisite sighting lap out of the way, it left Paul Renshaw in the lead as Paul Kneen ran over the start line with a crank in his hand.  A quick fix and he was away, losing 50 seconds to Renshaw in the process. Matthew Clague and Liam Mazzone were duking it out in their own little battle with Matthew taking the early lead with a lap 40 seconds faster than Liam.   The sports class saw Lee Quaggin easing out a 90 second lead over Alex Parkes.

The course had a mix of everything, short sharp inclines, declines, twisting singletrack and a moorland section before some more quarry lines took you into the final woody steep sided singletrack before spitting the riders back out onto the finish line and the race HQ (a lovely warm van, courtesy of Paul Kneen). 

Lap 2 saw Kneen closing in on Renshaw, adrift by 19 seconds, Matthew putting another 40 seconds into Liam and whilst Lee powered past, on a mission. When Alex arrived at the HQ he sat and chatted to the commissaires, whilst being reminded he was actually competing in a race ! 

Lap 3 and Kneen had passed Renshaw, taking 40 seconds out of Renshaw.  Matthew had edged even more time out of Liam, and Lee was cracking on.  Lap 4 saw the race settle down with the same order as before, but during the lap Matthew had a puncture and was out of the running.  Lap 5 saw even more drama as Kneen's crank finally gave up the ghost. 

Renshaw won completed 6 laps in just over the allotted one hour, whilst Liam finished second (1st 16-18) a lap down with 35 seconds to go before the hour was up was called in (indicating he could have done another lap...).  Paul Kneen had done enough to finish in an overall 3rd position (2nd Elite).  Lee was 4th (1st Sport) Matthew finished 5th (2nd 16-18), whilst Alex was 6th (2nd Sport).

All riders had an absolute blast, and a massive thanks must go out to Neil Helks for putting the route out and setting the whole event up in the first place.  Shame on all you mountain bikers that didnt come out because it was raining....  Red Cross also deserve a massive thank you, as does Chief Commissaire Steve Omeroed and finally Paul Kneen for a fantastic work place in the face of doom.

Results (full are in the forum, and have been provided to Manx Timing Solutions for an update at their end)

Paul Renshaw, Elite, 01:00:38, 6 laps
Paul Kneen, Elite, 00:38:21, 4 laps
Liam Mazzone, 16-18, 00:59:37, 5 laps
Matthew Clague, 16-18, 00:33:17, 3 laps
Lee Quaggin, Sport, 00:52:08, 4 laps
Alex Parkes, Sport, 00:53:13, 3 laps
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Manx Mountain Bike Club

Summer Series Round 1 – The Whallag Race


Sometimes, you pull off the race of the year, a race which is enjoyed by everyone, and includes some of the best single track on the Island (thanks to Willie Corkhill). This Sunday the Manx Mountain Bike Club did just that with the first of the Summer race series bizarrely known as 'The Whallag Race'. The route covered three of the most popular mountain biking locations on the Island, namely South Barrule, Corlea and Cringle Plantations, with the plantation car park at the former being the race headquarters and start line. From the off the competitors were treated to a lung busting sprint up the main fire road in South Barrule (I couldn't keep up) before the first of the gloppy single track gave everyone a real challenge to stay on the bike before the treacherous drop onto the Corlea fire road. Another mad sprint followed as everyone charged over to the bottom of the Whiskey Run (has to be my favourite name conjuring up images of smugglers), and another long drag giving those further back chance to catch sight of the leaders. As the route neared the top a sharp left turn threw the racers into the third of the plantations, Cringle and the single track which runs almost parallel to the recently climbed Whiskey Run. This has to be the favorite part of the course as the carefully etched out trail twists, turns and undulates downhill before a steep climb catapults everyone out at the bottom of Corlea Plantation for the return back to the start. But Corlea is not without merit as the route ploughed through the trees, down the 'Tunnel of Love' (more like Tunnel of Mud) along a river bed before skipping over a wooden bridge before being fire back into South Barrule. More single track followed before a long spring back to race HQ and the end of lap one. With four main categories in the race, Elite, Expert, Sport and Novice, only the latter were allowed to finish after one lap, with the rest of the field bashing round for a second time.

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Elaine kindly provided us some photos from round 1 of the Summer Series the Whallag race at South Barrule this weekend.

See below:


Click here to view more.

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Posted by on in Race Events

Isle Of Man Youth Tour.
Marshals required to help out.
MMBC, along with the other cycling clubs, are all helping out with providing marshals to help this successful cycling event.  MMBC are helping to supply marshals for Friday 2nd May nights stage on Douglas prom.  I require 8 club members to help out. Please send me an e mail if you can help, brionyandscott@yahoo.co.uk
Help is also required on Saturday 3rd May morning in Peel, Afternoon at Ellerslie. Sunday 4th May morning at Bride and in the afternoon on Ramsey prom.  If you can help out on the Saturday or Sunday please e mail, iomyt@hotmail.co.uk

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Posted by on in Race Events
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Posted by on in Website

Elliot Baxter, Nick Corlett, Joe Haddock and I, Scott Morgan made the trip over to Glasgow at the weekend racing for the Manx Mountain Bike Club.  The Cathkin Braes Mountain Bike Trails are hosting the 2014 Commonwealth Games Cross Country Mountain Bike Race on Tuesday 29th July and this was a chance for us all to try the course out.The venue makes the most of the varied terrain of Cathkin Braes Country Park to provide a challenging course for riders where speed, endurance and technical ability were tested round the 6km loop. Set against a backdrop of ancient woodland, steep slopes and wide open spaces, the trails offered a spectacular panorama of the Glasgow City beyond.

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Posted by on in Race Events

This coming Monday (14th) see's the first round of the Evening Series put on by Neil Helks, get entered quick! as it's going to be a cracker of a series. You can enter online here:

http://www.manxmtb.com/mmbc-events-list/eventdetail/374/-/dhoon-spring-series-round-1.html#registrations

 

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If you did not know already the Manx Telecom End to end mountain bike challenge entries have now Opened! get yours in quick because they usually go quick!! You can here online here:

https://www.sientries.co.uk/event.php?event_id=1384

Hope to see you all at the start line :).

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Posted by on in Race Reports

Today, Sunday 12th January the Mountain Bike Club held the 4th round of the popular Bikestyle Winter Series at the Dhoon Quarry.
I have to say when it was proposed by Neil Helks that he wanted to race around this quarry I was more than a little sceptical. To me racing around a quarry with its steep drop off's, rocks and more than a little water along with obstacles not normally present at a mountain bike venue would be a cruel battle of frustration and damage limitation. I was, as proved, very wrong. Neil put in a lot of work preparing this route, and it was not without reward as the race was both different and challenging despite the muddy sections along the top perimeter of the quarry. So, its hard to find another way of describing the course other than the route snaked and undulated through the quarry floor and after climbing to the highest point again meandered snake like down through the undergrowth to be spat out just before the timing mat. The smiles of pain on the riders faces as the laps passed by provided the evidence that this was without doubt a classic race and a new popular race venue for the future. So with that said and done its time to say thank you. Neil Helks you did a fantastic job preparing this course, it was a great race so a big thank you for your time and effort. Of course all the marshals and officials which help make this happen and importantly the Red Cross for Medical cover. 

All the results are visible at the Manx Timing Solutions website and in next weeks Independent.

The next event on the club calendar is Round 5 of the Bikestyle Winter Series at Chibbanagh Plantation.

Looking ahead to the 17th of May the Legs of Man two day event is being held and on to the 27th July the soon to be world famous Manx 100 is making itself known once again.

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