The AvantiPlus Hellfire Cup really found some traction in 2014, with riders digging the natural trails, relaxed vibe of the event centre, and the hot racing. While some weren’t sure if it sat at the end of the marathon season, or the start of the XC season, all racers were pretty set on racing hard, and sharing stories at the event centre or local eateries afterwards.
Essentially a paired stage race over four days, the Hellfire Cup mixes shorter stages than other races, with varied formats that don’t necessarily have you racing arm in arm with your team mate. The nature of the stages makes for close racing, tight battles between friends, and minimal amounts of pedalling slowly through the forest. Just about all the trails are purpose built for the event, on private property near Kellevie in Tasmania. If you want a full rundown of the stages, head to the event website.
The 2015 event runs from 19-22nd of November, but entries close midnight on September 7th – get in quick if you’re keen. Got no mates? You can race solo. Got no time off work? You can just race the weekend stages.
Plenty of Australia’s elite will keep coming back to the Hellfire Cup, so we quizzed some of them about what makes the race such a great event, and why they keep coming back.
My favorite stage of the Hellfire Cup… is the 50km long stage on day 2. Although a super-tough 50km loop, it is also includes a great mix of fire trail and single-track and there’s no better way of enjoying such trails than alongside your partner.
3 words to describe Hellfire… fast, furious racing
The thing I found most surprising… in last years event was just how much great singletrack was on offer!
Favorite post race activity… involved chilling out with friends over a coffee or bite to eat.
Besides my bike, I definitely couldn’t do without… food, and plenty of it!
My favourite Stage of the Hellfire Cup in 2014… I think even though it was one of the shortest stages I would have to say I love the last day hot lap, this probably has to do with the buzz, the crowd the crazy fun of this type of short fast race, reminds me of when I race track and everyone’s on the edge of their seat for a couple of mins! In contrast I also loved the half marathon stage day, very much opposite to the above but you get to cover so much beautiful rainforest terrain. Love a bit of contrast!
Three words to describe the Hellfire Cup… awesome great fun!
The thing that I found most surprising at the Hellfire Cup was… During the race you see some amazing views, You feel like you’ve left the world behind and you’re somewhere along way from anywhere, (anywhere concrete jungle like 🙂 ) it’s awesome, yet it’s a very short drive into Hobart if you want to do some sightseeing or grab a meal post stage.
Favourite post race activity at the Hellfire Cup… Soaking up the atmosphere and having a little beverage….. And if we’ve done ok hopefully shaking up the beverage and spraying it all over everyone!
Besides my bike, I definitely couldn’t do without… That’s a hard one there’s so many things you need to take like your kit, don’t really want to ride around naked, But I’d have to say my 4shaw deuce Team mate and better half Rebecca Locke. Stage racing can be pretty hard, we support each other and also push each other, you can get tied and cranky sometimes but ultimately we always have great fun and that’s what it’s about at the end of the day and why I do it!
My favourite Stage of the Hellfire Cup in 2014… the 2-up TTT – it’s a format that is under-used in MTB (time trailing) and also really good fun with your team mate. 30second intervals make it exciting too – someone you can see in front, but also knowing someone can see you behind….
Three words to describe the Hellfire Cup… Real Mountain Biking
The thing that I found most surprising at the Hellfire Cup was… the amount and quality of the trails built in and around the event center. That place is like an outdoor tardis!
Favourite post race activity at the Hellfire Cup… A fish-pie and cider at the Waterfront Café in Dunalley. Some of the best homemade food I ever come across. Good scones too 😉
Besides my bike, I definitely couldn’t do without… A friend good enough to listen to my complaining at having sore legs, and still tell me to shut-tf-up and get on with it…