Ok, let's offer a bit more information for those who didn't get the e-mail.
Jon has it pretty much nailed above - the cost of flying to the west coast of America has soared in the past couple of months which put attendance from Europe as a very expensive proposition, putting extra pressure on us as organisers to make a really special experience. And we were adamant that we wanted to continue to reflect the number of nationalities that took part in 2009 and 2010 and without attendance from Europe based riders that wasn't really going to happen.
Obviously the success of OWMTBC so far was down to those who had made the leap of faith so we contacted them first. In these times of increasing austerity it was unfortunate but understandable that it was a struggle to commit and we didn't want to go ahead with an event that we feared might not be the equal of Holland in 2009 and North Wales in 2010. We therefore took the decision to cancel with a heavy heart.
Last year we had the chance to move to a bigger event with 200+ involved. We thought long and hard about it and ultimately decided that we didn't necessarily want that as the strength of the first year was the intimacy of a relatively small number, real opportunity to get to know everyone there and establish lasting friendships. This endured in year two with plenty of old faces but also new participants really adding to the mix.
For those late to the party or not understanding what it was about, there's more here
2009 http://www.retrobike.co.uk/forum/viewto ... ght=owmtbc
2010 http://www.retrobike.co.uk/forum/viewto ... ght=owmtbc
A write up of 2010 from those guys at Orange http://www.orangebikes.co.uk/news/view/OWMTBC/
Oh yeah, and a 10 page spread in the current Privateer http://www.rouleur.cc/privateer-2
And to address a couple of specific points
I believe had the organizers actively reached out to US-based riders, you'd have a bigger number of planned attendees. I for sure would have been one of them.
Our approach was to go first with the guys (and girls) who had supported us to date. The second phase would have been to contact the US based guys who had been in touch to express interest, and you were obviously one of those guys Mike (actually one of two). Sadly we weren't able to get to the point of moving it forward.
I bet this was a major undertaking. Too bad it couldn't happen.
Yes, it was a major undertaking and I certainly won't claim that putting something back wasn't costly in terms of time and personal expense. But we were and are totally committed to it and boy, was it rewarding! Did we ever falter? Certainly the XC track being on fire and closed two days before Holland 2009 put a slight kink in our stride but nothing that enthusiasm from the attendees couldn't overcome and we were out riding hard in the sun bang on schedule (we'll overlook having to get up at 5 a.m. to make sure the track was ok!).
I would have signed up to race for sure.
Limited to no info available about the event though, makes it hard to hype the event or plan around it.
I'm sure long distance planning is more than a little difficult.
Long distance planning has it's issues but we'd managed before and could have done so again. As above, we never intended to hype the event and to be honest when we'd mentioned the concept on US based boards in the past the silence was palpable. That said, great to hear that you're interested now, shame we only knew after we'd had to pull the event but look forward to your interest and involvement in OWMTBC events in the coming years. Oh, and it isn't and never was a race as the links above and www.owmtbc.org
So, where do we go from here? When we made the decision to cancel Dorian Ruddock said that it felt as if we'd killed a puppy. I'm happy to announce that the puppy is alive and well, growing ever more robust and longing to have it's tummy tickled. Many, many thanks to all those who have supported us so far, without getting too soppy it really wouldn't have been the same without you. We're still maintaining our e-mail address (email@example.com
) so don't hesitate to drop us a line. OWMTBC will move onward, upward (but preferably not downhill), so look out for more events coming your way in the not too distant.
Still California Dreamin'
Ed, on behalf of OWMTBC