Category Archives: Mtb

Chunky wheels. Suspension. The correct way to ride.

Sisters (apparently) aren’t doing it for themselves

That is, repairing their own punctures. Or so this blog post from Total Women’s Cycling seems to suggest.

Now, I’m not usually one to throw myself wildly into a topic where I could be accused of sexism, condescension and general douchebaggery, but it’s made me itch in a kind of odd way. What kind of cycling world are women coming into where they can be a mountain biker for ten years and still not know, other than in a purely theoretical sense, how to fix a flat tyre when out on the trail?

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This Just In: No XCM Series for 2013

My main racing aim for 2013 was to race this year’s installment of the Real Insurance XCM Series, a series of six marathon-distance MTB events that’s been proving wildly popular for the last few years.

Unfortunately, I’ve heard this morning via Capital Punishment’s Facebook page that there will be no XCM Series for 2013.

I’ve so far found no details on why the series is off, but no doubt that’ll become clear over time. It’s possible an abbreviated series may emerge, but the Wombat 100, Cap Punishment, The Convict 100, The Highland Fling and The Kowalski Classic (which was to be a first-time inclusion) won’t be part of it, making it a rather emasculated version of previous years.

The races themselves will go on, in stand-alone fashion, but there’s no overarching series tying them together.

This is a loss for Australian endurance MTB, but with so many other races to choose from, the scene is still healthy, even if it still doesn’t seem to know the difference between marathon and enduro.

On a personal note, this means my racing ambitions for the year will shift. I’m unlikely to head south to the Wombat 100 if it’s not part of the XCM, since it’s logistically tricky to organise, and may instead refocus on the Shimano MTB GP series of endurance events, depending on how the first round goes this weekend. Or next weekend, since weather is worrying the organisers a little. I’d still like to do the Convict 100, and I’m entered for Capital Punishment already. I have unfinished business with the Highland Fling this year, too, since I missed last year’s start due to a car breakdown.

More news on this will be posted as I find it.

UPDATE: CycleNation have announced on Twitter.


No. Just No.

As if there wasn’t already enough to adjust on the trail, I give you… Adaptrac on-the-fly tyre pressure adjustment.

No. Seriously, no. Fuck off. If I see you with this on the trail, I’m going to push you off your bike and steal all the CO2 cartridges. FOR YOUR OWN GOOD.

It’s not a fucking Enduro

The author at the 2012 Kanangra Classic 100km

Not an Enduro

I got an email this morning, enjoining me to sign up for the Stinging Mettle MTB Marathon event.

Except it didn’t call it a marathon event. It called it, as it’s been calling it since the first announcement, an Enduro.

Let’s just get something straight here.

Stinging Mettle is not an Enduro. It’s a marathon.

In years past, it was acceptable to call 100km XC races “enduros”, because the meaning of the phrase “MTB Enduro” wasn’t settled. It was used interchangeably¬† as shorthand for “endurance race” and for events inspired by motorcycle enduro. In Europe and North America, the timed-stage version prevailed. Here in Australialand, several organisers applied it to marathons and that definition seemed to have the upper hand.

However these days, there’s an Enduro World Tour, which is All-mountain racing, in timed stages with untimed sections, and as such the meaning of Enduro can be said, fairly, to be settled. It’s gone international, and as such, Aussies need to get with the program and start calling marathons marathons.

Stinging Mettle is not an Enduro. The Tathra is not an enduro. Kanangra is not an enduro (my 2012 race jersey, with “enduro” written all over it notwithstanding).

Catch up, people. You’re on the wrong side of history here. The meaning is settled. Enduro is timed stage all-mountain. Your events are marathons. Deal with it.

(p.s. apologies, such as they are, for the intemperate language of the title. If there’s one thing guaranteed to wind me up it’s inaccurate use of the English language)

Update: Pinkbike weighed in on this topic not long after me. AS did Flow Magazine on their Facebook page. Get a grip, The Australian MTB Racing Industry!