The fifth and final race of this year’s Shimano Mountain Bike Grand Prix Series will summon more than 300 racers to Canberra’s Stromlo Forest Park this Saturday. Organisers from Rocky Trail Entertainment expect a thrilling conclusion to the popular cross-country racing series that has seen a good 1500 riders cross their finish line since March. For 2015, a six-race series with headline sponsor SHIMANO Cycling Australia has already been confirmed to commence in early March next year.
For the final event, an eight kilometre race course will be set out at Stromlo Forest Park and among the participants will be some of Australia’s top endurance athletes, including Canberra’s Andrew Blair who finished in 12th at the recent Commonwealth Games XCO competition in Glasgow (UK). Rocky Trail’s Event Director Juliane Wisata says that the series has attracted a wide variety of mountain bike racers since its inception in 2009, “We see this series as a real playground for all keen mountain bikers. Especially this year we’ve seen a huge influx of junior and female racers and we think it’s because we provide a positive event atmosphere and professional racing platform for Australian athletes to enjoy and share their passion for mountain biking and to develop their skills.”
The overall Shimano MTB GP Series winners will be awarded at Stromlo Forest Park. In the overall GP7 elite men’s local matador Callum McNamara and Central Coast’s Max Richardson are equally on 426 points, promising a tight deciding race. Kirby Knowles from Newcastle is in a more comfortable position in the GP7 Hour elite women’s category, leading ahead of fellow Novocastrian Laura Renshaw and Canberra’s Alyssa Glyde.
In the GP4-hour elite series, Wendy Stevenson and Paris Basson lead their respective categories. The top three series place-getters in each solo and team category will get awarded with the official Shimano MTB GP Series Champions socks and certificates. A minimum of two race results are required to be eligible for a placing and the best 4 out of 5 race points results will count towards to final series result.
9am Race start
11am Kids race
1pm Race finish for GP4-hour competition
2pm Est. prize ceremony GP4 hour race & overall series
4pm Race finish for GP7-hour competition
5pm Est. prize ceremony GP7 hour race & overall series
Thanks to Outerimage.com.au for the use of the images.