Thursday, June 20, 2024

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HomeIssue 1Alice mountain biking classic turns 10

Alice mountain biking classic turns 10

p2405 Redback
Sir – Mountain bikers from across Australia will race along kilometres of hand built single-track at Alice Springs this August as part of The Redback, a four-day, six-stage bike race that attracts Australia’s elite riders down to keen amateurs.
First held in 2008 – the race formerly known as the Ingkerreke Commercial MTB Enduro will celebrate its 10th anniversary in 2017, taking place from August 17 to 20.
The mountain biking around Alice Springs has really matured over those years and it is now deservedly known as one of Australia’s most significant riding destinations.
When we conducted the first race in 2008 there were plenty of trails that the locals had built but we had to work hard to convince interstate riders to come and race. But now it is widely known that the Red Centre trails are some of the best in Australia.
The stages for 2017 have been tweaked to include many of the new trails that have been built recently, from 40 to 50 kilometre cross country racing, an ANZAC Hill Climb, individual time trial and the 22km night race.
Although the racing is fast at the front, no stages are too long or hard so there’s plenty of time to socialise and hang out around the pool after each day with a great sense of camaraderie established between riders as they knock off each stage one race at a time.
All races start and finish within rolling distance of Alice Springs so riders do not need a support crew or a hire car and unlike many other stage races they can stay in the one hotel for the entire event.
There is also the flexibility for riders to either do all stage races or pick and choose just the stages that suit them, ideal for working locals.
The 2017 event coincides with the famous Rotary Club’s Henley On Todd Regatta on.
John Jacoby
Race Director, Rapid Ascent


  1. Congratulations to all involved in this growing event and the development of our local MTB culture in general.
    I’m a casual rider and love exploring the tracks and trails around town with friends or on my own.
    It is a great way to get fit and experience the sights and sounds of the wonderful rugged country we live in.
    I am grateful to everyone who helps build and maintain the tracks.

  2. What a great event! Because my mind works the way it does, it wandered back to a long gone trip to Japan where I watched on National TV a 100km long marathon relay for senior secondary school students from all over the country.
    It was later revealed that the estimated TV audience was 80 million. Yes, million! I often since wondered why not here?
    My mind immediately switched to Glen Helen to Alice – a distance of around 130km and thought why not?
    I passed the idea around but it met with a wall of indifference.
    This beautiful place is only limited by our limited thinking.
    The bike event should be only the tip of the iceberg with a bit of thinking outside the square.

  3. Ask them how much money they put back into the development of local riding as well as the local club over the last few year.
    Next to zero, I am guessing.
    The original message is a blatant form of advertising. I believe that they also have or may still receive government assistance to run the race here. Would be nice to put that funding into local clubs, junior development and local track access works and ongoing work of current tracks.
    After all that it is a good event and enjoyed by those who ride, entry fee is very high though.


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