We had a preview of the iXS Macavalanche a few weeks back and it looks like one of the daftest and most exciting race ideas for a long time. We’ve finally got the proper MTBCut promo for the video through – our video was a little spoilt by the high winds and snow. Here is it for your viewing pleasure…
Stu reports on:
It was back in July 2010 that No Fuss Events announced the Macavalanche. “A little brother or sister to the world famous Megavalanche” was the quote from event organiser No Fuss. By invitation riders, enthusiasts and trade were requested to register for an opportunity to ride.
The list quickly filled with another load of desperadoes on the emergency stand-by list under the heading “Please, please let me in.” To date the No fuss Team have been a bit coy (which is not like them) about prospective dates, times and of course rules. No Fuss really do not go in for rules so that has been no big surprise;it’s all about “get out there, do it and enjoy!”
Glencoe Mountain (www.glencoemountain.com) is to be the home of the Macavalanche. The mountain is famous for being the oldest ski area in the UK and has a gnarly, hard reputation on the downhill circuit. The new owners at the centre are delighted to be able to host an event that brings together the very best of Glencoe – great snow, incredible mountain biking, stunning scenery, thrills, spills and a bit of madness!
iXS Sports Division were quick off the mark and struck a deal to ensure that they were headline sponsor for the event. Hotlines Europe (UK distributor of iXS) marketing manager Martin Astley explained. “As soon as we heard about the Macavalanche we knew we had to be involved. It’s a great opportunity for iXS to partner with a fledgling event that we are sure is going to be unreal. The guys at No Fuss know how to put on a great event and the Macavalanche will be no exception.”
Up until today Frazer Coupland from No Fuss has resisted talking about dates for the event. When asked, his stock answer has been, “When there is an adequate amount of snow to facilitate a track from the summit down the main basin, across the plateau and finally descending via the weasel to the car park below.” Today he and the No Fuss Team announced that the race is likely to take part on the 23rd or the 30th of April. They will be waiting for a weather window, ready to push the button and go.
Riders on the list will be selected on Sunday the 3rd of April, the lucky 70 will receive an email on Monday the 4th to request that they confirm their availability. “No Reply means No Entry – and then we will keep going until we have the 70 riders” smiled Chloe, the No Fuss administrator that keeps the team in check.
For many reasons it has been a funny old winter – early snow, wind and then a massive thaw, more snow, more wind and it’s still February! Snowsport enthusiasts at Glencoe Mountain Resort have had more reasons than other to have a laugh as the iXS team along with other iXS riders have been working with No Fuss to ensure route choices are good, perhaps sneak in a wee bit of practice and get to grips with bike handling on the snow. There is a short promo video made by Stu from MTBcut that is now available online. The MTBcut Team sponsored by iXS and Orange has also been sighted cutting a dash on the slopes this year. Stu said “The Macavalanche in an exciting new event to hit the UK. It is like nothing this country has ever seen, a mass start on snow, helicopter uplift along with the usual No Fuss organisation and atmosphere. It’s a recipe for an incredible event.”
What can we expect on the day? The plan for the day is that riders will arrive early at Glencoe Mountain and get bikes to the rendezvous point where they will than be transported be piste machine to the top of the mountain. Riders will be advised of their time slot and helicopter pick up point, ready to get them to the top of the mountain and rejoin their steads. After a quick race briefing it will be a simple mass start, good luck and first down to the bottom station is the winner. Riders will be required to follow a set course a set out by No Fuss on the day. Coupland warned “there have been some increases in fuel prices and expects entry fees to be just over the hundred pound mark”
Will it be a spectacle? Oh yes! Having watched riders including Will Longden, Ben Cathro and Crawford Carrick Anderson trying to get to grips with snow, rock, ice, mud and heather it is bound to be a spectacle. Spectators will be able to purchase chairlift passes to access the mountain and enjoy a great view of the race. The race is likely to start at around 1500ish and it is estimated that the first rider will take around 20 mins to descend the mountain.
Orange Mountain bikes have come aboard as the bike sponsor for the event and David Flynn from Orange said, “The plan sounded truly bonkers when it was coined last year and, as it fast approaches, the prospect seems even scarier. It’s going to make a real spectacle and an alternative milestone in UK racing that’ll be hard to top.”
Whilst the No Fuss team ooze excitement about this race they freely admit Macavalanche is a bit mad, “For the first time ever we are getting requests and offers for entries to ride an event that hasn’t been run before! We are sure it will work but ………” laughed Spook. “2011 is going to be a great year for No Fuss and the Macavalanche seems like an appropriate way to get our season under way.”