The team behind the successful UCI Mountain Bike World Cup has unveiled a brand new action-packed programme with a superheroes theme, as the award-winning event returns to the scenic Scottish Highlands 4 - 5 June 2011.
Families planning a fun day out this summer need look no further. The event, now in its tenth year, takes place at Fort William and attracts the global superstars of the mountain biking circuit.
With the stunning backdrop of Ben Nevis, high-octane mountain bike racing and a colourful, entertaining 'Village', the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup is the ultimate weekend away or day out for keeping both kids and adults enthralled.
Retaining its iconic position on the global tour with another weekend of world class Downhill and 4-Cross action, this year's event will bring a festival atmosphere to Fort William as the crowds get into the spirit of the Downhill Superheroes. With new course upgrades bringing fresh challenges to the riders and exciting features for spectators there's the chance to get even closer to the action.
Over the weekend there are two World Cup events for both men and women, featuring 300 riders from more than 25 countries. On Saturday the gladiatorial 4X is a head to head knock-out competition on a short course with huge jumps, berms and the notorious Rock Garden. 4 riders start and the first two finishers progress to the next round. The climax of the weekend is the Downhill, which sees competitors charge down the slopes of Aonach Mor, descending 525m in 2.6km on a course that is recognized as one of the toughest in the world.
The 'Big Doon' which is awaiting a take-off ramp.
The two-days of world-class sporting competition take place in the Nevis Range Ski Area but in addition to the race action there is so much more to see and do.
The large, colourful 'Village' offers a Tech Area, the World Cup's answer to Formula 1 pits where spectators get a behind-the-scenes look at the stars preparing to race and can ask for autographs or photos, an Expo area with World Cup merchandise, bike goodies, gadgets, gizmos and bikewear with attitude, displays by sponsors and event partners as well as a range of food and drink stands to refuel, with live DJs, bands and comperes providing non-stop entertainment.
Other than being up on the course, the finish arena is the best place to catch all the action. A huge grandstand, coupled with the biggest big screen in the world, ensures that you get to see everything that's going on, including the awards ceremonies on the podium.
The new start gate hut taking shape.
Dare 2b will have their sponsored "MAD" Mountain bike Aerial Display team demonstrating throughout the weekend, sure to impress kids of all ages. Families and fans can also enjoy the Cycling Scotland skills loop, which proved hugely popular last year and promises to be even bigger and better at this year's event. They will also be presenting their Mountain Bike Proficiency courses which launched with huge success last year. Alpine Bikes have joined forces with DirtSchool to offer skills workshop for the more experienced riders.
The British Bike Trial Championship takes place on Saturday, with amazing displays of bike skills on ridiculous obstacles at a number of observed sections throughout the Village. Sunday also sees a round of the British Trials Cup taking place.
On Saturday a Mini Downhill comes to the World Cup – 8-16 year olds competing on a short course by age group with an awards ceremony on the World Cup podium.
As well as enjoying the mountain walks, children’s play park and high wire adventure that are on offer at Nevis Range, crowds can also take the gondola trip to 650m to get spectacular views of all the course action
Mike Jardine from event organisers Rare Management, comments: "The UCI Mountain Bike World Cup is much more than a top sporting event. As well as a packed programme of incredible mountain biking competition there'll be a fantastic range of things to do and see, it's also a great weekend away or day out for both adults and kids – you’ve got to be there!"
Tickets and event information
Tickets for the event are now on sale and kids under six go free. For more information on tickets, the course and competitors as well as travelling to the event and accommodation in the local area please visit: www.fortwilliamworldcup.co.uk