World class MTB line-up comes to Essex

World class MTB line-up comes to Essex


The Hadleigh Farm Mountain Bike International
Location: Hadleigh Farm, Essex
Event: 31th July 2011

Photo: GB Cycling Team's Kenta Gallagher will line up with 103 of the world's best cross country mountain bikers

Days after marking one year to go until the start of London 2012 Olympic Games, GB Cycling Team's Kenta Gallagher will line up with 103 of the world's best cross country mountain bikers to get the chance to test the Olympic course at the Hadleigh Farm Mountain Bike International - the test event for the London 2012 Mountain Bike competition and part of the London Prepares Series.

On Sunday 31st July, 5000 people are set to enjoy a thrilling day of mountain biking at the Hadleigh Farm Mountain Bike International. The day starts with the Women's competition at 11am with 44 of the world's top female riders battling out on the 5.1km course. At 2pm 60 competitors will then tackle the course in the Men's competition as they fight it out for top spot.

The line-up for the Olympic test event includes Beijing 2008 Olympic Gold medalists Sabine Spitz (GER) and Julien Absalon (FRA). Absalon was also Olympic Champion in Athens 2004. The line-up also includes World Cup series leaders Jaroslav Kulhavy (CZE) and Julie Bresset (FRA), plus Rwanda's first ever Mountain Biker Adrien Niyonshuti. British riders include Maddie Horton in the Women's race and the Men's line-up includes Lee Williams and Kenta Gallagher. Kenta's team mate Dave Fletcher is sidelined through injury, whilst Liam Killeen and Annie Last will miss the event to focus on preparations for forthcoming UCI events which will score Olympic qualification points.

The test event gives riders their first chance to competitively race on the purpose built Olympic course. This will also be the only chance for many mountain bike fans to view the Olympic course and take in breathtaking panoramic views of the Thames Estuary. Spectators will be able to move around the venue to access different parts of the course and witness riders tackle the technical features which include Leap of Faith, The Rabbit Hole and The Breathtaker.

David Luckes, Head of Sport Competition at London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games (LOCOG) said of the Hadleigh Farm Mountain Bike International: "Excitement is high about getting the opportunity to test the Mountain Bike course at Hadleigh Farm, and also about the high standard of competitors the event has attracted. Spectators from both the local area and the mountain bike community are in for a day of top level competition."

Essex County Councillor Stephen Castle said: "I'm really looking forward to welcoming the World's top riders, mountain bike fans and local community to the Olympic venue at Hadleigh Farm. Spectators will get the chance to see elite competitors in action against the stunning backdrop of the Thames Estuary and after an enjoyable event, leave knowing that Essex is a great cycling destination."

At the Hadleigh Farm Mountain Bike International, LOCOG is specifically testing the race course, venue admission, timing, scoring and transportation.

Spectators are being encouraged to travel to the event by public transport. The nearest station is Leigh-on-Sea and a free shuttle bus service will take spectators from the station to the venue. There is also a park-and-ride service to Waterside Farm Leisure Centre and a bike park just outside the venue.

For more information including details on transport and road closures visit the London Prepares website