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PostPosted: Fri Aug 30, 2013 12:32 pm 
North Wales Deputy AEC
North Wales Deputy AEC
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Joined: Sun Apr 30, 2006 12:50 am
Posts: 6547
Not really sure where to ponder this one, so we'll start here...

I'm looking to pick up riding old school XC racing again (although not on a retro bike) next year but am at a loss as to where the sport currently is regarding categories of events. Basically I want one or two longer laps around rugged and mixed terrain in wilder locations but as I understand it, modern XC tends to be five or six laps of shorter loops. Ideally I want a national series that I can travel around to over the course of the year.

'Marathon' caught my eye but I understand that those are not mass starts, which I find off putting. The terrain looks appropriate though.

'Enduro' sounds exciting but I'm no downhiller/jumper, although the videos I've seen make the terrain look the type of thing I think of from back in the day XC. Again, no mass start either.

Anyone any experience of these newer events to share?

PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2013 5:44 pm 
National & North West AEC
National & North West AEC
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Joined: Mon Nov 03, 2008 12:43 am
Posts: 8165
Location: Macclesfield Forest
Marathon and Enduro events tend to be mass participation rides over a relatively long distance marked course. Much like road Sportives you can start when you are ready (within a designated start period) and you get an official finishing time.
To overcome rules about racing bikes on public highways and rights of way, they are effectively run as off road time trials, but aren't advertised as such.
Promoters/organisers will always do their best to emphasise that it's not a race or competition.
Finish times are usually posted up online a few days after the event.
The newest Enduro format is the Downhill Enduro which involves uplifts and fitting in as many fast runs as possible.

Of course, many people treat Marathons and Enduros as a race. Many though approach it as a more of a sociable challenge ride.

The old school XC race format is difficult to find any more. Which is a shame as I used to enjoy the NEMBA series.

PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2013 8:36 pm 
Lincs, East and South Yorks Deputy AEC
Lincs, East and South Yorks Deputy AEC
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Joined: Fri Feb 29, 2008 11:55 pm
Posts: 6777
totally agree with Paul, the marathons i have done were enjoyable, but............the mileage is made up of lots of long boring fire roads and road sections sometimes which spoils it imho, but they are run very well and can be great fun, aint raced a traditional xc race since the 90's, fancy the sheerwood pines races this winter and next summer but only if my fitness improves.

i say go for it dude, try a localish one and go from there. i went with a few mates and didnt take them too serously but the banter/craic can be ace

PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2013 9:28 pm 
retrobike rider
retrobike rider
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Joined: Tue Mar 17, 2009 3:55 pm
Posts: 4319
Location: In trubble'fsumthin r'uther....North Warwickshire
The midlands Xc series runs each year through the summer......5 races combined into a series, with cumulative points......the full mass start, old school Xc racing hit, just like it used to be done when't we were lads!......

PostPosted: Mon Sep 02, 2013 1:56 am 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Fri May 01, 2009 7:11 pm
Posts: 8543
Location: Go ask Alice...
If you fancy a bit of a jaunt to Surrey/Berkshire, Gorrick MTB club are doing two autumn races and a 5 race spring series.
I haven't done one of these for, ooh, at laest 15 years but they were always very well run and popular.
I think I might give them a go again.

Jesus, I've just looked at the categories, and I'll be in Grand Vets. When I last raced I was only just eligible for Masters...

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