06 Mar 2014

The Subaru Australian Mountain Bike Championships start today in the picturesque alpine township of Bright, Victoria (March 6-10), presented by Mountain Bike Australia (MTBA).

Riders will race across 5 mountain bike disciplines spread over five competition days on some of Australia’s premiere mountain bike trails.

A field of stars will line up in the cross country disciplines, headlined by Olympians Dan McConnell (VIC) and Bec Henderson (ACT) who are both aiming for Commonwealth Games selection this year.

In 2013, McConnell had his first career World Cup win in Albstadt, Germany and continued to shine throughout the World Cup series, finishing with the Silver medal. Henderson too dominated the world, convincingly winning the Under 23 World Cup title with two World Cup wins along the way.

Australians have historically been strong performers in World Cup Downhill, regularly winning World Championships and medals in the discipline that combines extreme skill and jaw-dropping speed.

Sunday’s Downhill final will be contested on the steep and rocky Mystic mountain course. Spectacular Down Hill practice will entertain spectators looking for thrills and spills on each day of the event.

2013 World Championship Silver medalist and reigning Elite Men’s National Champion Mick Hannah (QLD) is in town to defend his national title, as is his sister Tracey Hannah (QLD), the defending Elite Women’s champion. The brother and sister team-mates are looking forward to the MTB World Cup heading to their home town of Cairns in April.

In the Real Insurance Marathon event to be held on Monday after the Championships, reigning National Marathon Champion Jason English (NSW) stars in a field of riders tackling the 78km course. English is a super star in mountain biking with 4 consecutive World Solo 24hr Championships wins.

MTBA President, Russell Baker AM, said “The Championships are the culmination of the mountain biking season in Australia, with all disciplines coming together to crown Australia’s best riders. After a very successful national series MTBA are looking forward to great weekend of racing in Bright.”

2014 is the first time the Championships have been held in Bright. Alpine Shire Council Mayor Peter Roper reflected on the event coming to the region. “Not only is this a fantastic way for competitors and their supporters to enjoy everything the Alpine Shire has to offer, it also brings the exciting sport right to the doorstep of locals.”

Spectators are welcome at the Subaru Australian Mountain Bike Championships free of charge. All information can be found at: http://mtb.subaru.com.au/national-championships/

All information & results: http://mtb.subaru.com.au/national-championships/

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All information – Mountain Bike Australia: http://www.mtba.asn.au