Jon Odams on the iconic Snakes and Ladders climb at Glenrock. | Photo Outerimage.com.au

Jon Odams on the iconic Snakes and Ladders climb at Glenrock. | Photo Outerimage.com.au

For the first time Rocky Trail hosted a lap race at Glenrock State Conservation area and with 300 competitors from all over NSW and the ACT the event sold out days before the race. The popular mountain bike trail network in Newcastle offered tight singletrail racing and tough fire trail climbs as well as magnificent ocean views. In the four hour event the win in the general classification among the more then 100 solo racing men and outright line honours went to Sydney’s Jon Odams who completed nine laps on a hot late summer’s day.

A huge field lines up for the start to Round 1 of the SHIMANO MTB Grand Prix at Glenrock. | Photo Outerimage.com.au

A huge field lines up for the start to Round 1 of the SHIMANO MTB Grand Prix at Glenrock. | Photo Outerimage.com.au

“This was proper single track racing and I really enjoyed some of the trail features – there was a little jump I did right at the beginning and the views on the climbs back to the event centre were quite special”, Odams said after his race. His main competitor in the general classification (GC), local racer Andrew Lloyd, came in with eight laps in just over four hours, two minutes ahead of fellow Novocastrian Stefan Merriman.

In the four hour women’s event it was a young racer who dominated the field – Sara Mills completed six laps, finishing almost 20 minutes ahead of Natalie Anderson from Sutherland. Claudia Fiess from the Northern Beaches finished with 5 laps in third.

About one third of the event participants competed in the seven hour event. Jason Hewitt won the solo men’s GC with 12 laps ahead of Alex Kooijman (+4 min) and Benjamin Jacka (11 laps). The only female solo racer was Dalene Pretorious and the seven hour line honours was taken out by the local team of Stu Adams, Simon Ritchie and Tristan Gribble with 15 laps in 7:29:51.

The five-race SHIMANO MTB Grand Prix Series will continue with Round 2 in Singleton on 9 April. Race Director Martin Wisata from Rocky Trail Entertainment said that the Singleton trails will be quite different from the hilly Glenrock track. “We aim to bring our racers a wide variety of trails throughout the series – Glenrock was a climber’s race and in Singleton we have open paddocks and flowy singletrails waiting for us”, he said.

Jason Hewitt enjoys seven hours on narrow trails in the dense bushland at Glenrock. | Photo Outerimage.com.au

Jason Hewitt enjoys seven hours on narrow trails in the dense bushland at Glenrock. | Photo Outerimage.com.au

All series events are stand-alone races and any mountain biker is welcome to participate:

  1. Round 2 – Singleton NSW, 9 April 2016
  2. Round 3 – Stromlo Forest Park, Canberra ACT, 7 May 2016
  3. Round 4 – Ourimbah MTB Park, Wyong NSW, 25 June 2016 – supported by Wyong Shire Council
  4. Round 5 – The Australian Botanic Garden, Mt Annan NSW, 23 July 2016

For online registration, series and event details, visit www.rockytrailentertainment.com