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Port to Port done and dusted


staffe's picture

By staffe - Posted on 29 May 2017

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.

For anyone who thought about P2P but did not do it - here is a first hand account of it.

On paper it is four days with no day being particularly long so it looks like pretty simple but it was a bit harder than what I thought. All locations are quite scenic and offer more than mountain biking for the support crew to enjoy. Anyone who made the mistake of inviting a spouse to e.g Scott 24hr may have a little convincing to do but it is an enjoyable event for support crew as well as riders.

Day one is at the spectacular Nelson Bay. Short day with lots of sand to get bogged down in that sucks the juice out of the legs quite effectively. Late start with plenty of time to get organised in the morning. And the scenery around is just magic.

Day two is at Hunter valley. Early start at an elevated position with spectacular views. This morning was just breathtakingly beautiful. Slightly longer day sporting a 10k uphill section early in the race but mainly fire trails or road so more road riding than mountain biking. Lots of climbing and when you think it is all over there is a steep little bastard of a climb just a few hundred meters before the finishing line.

Day three is the longest day and encompasses Awaba mtb park early in the piece and then another long climb up on a ridge with lots of firetrails to make up the distance and it was again more road riding than mtb.

Day four was in the Newcastle area and the best of the four stages. Mostly single trail with a few ks of road riding before the single trail and it started to feel a bit like proper mountain biking and less like road riding on a MTB. The down side was a beach section in soft sand but that was soon forgotten when it was time to conquer the steepest hill I've ever ridden up.

Everyday was the same, perfect weather, perfect organisation and totally enjoyable. The demographics seemed a bit older than other races. Lots of oldies but I guess with an entry fee of $440 and then hotel rooms every night and eating out, it adds up to become a bit of an expensive outing.

There is enough time in between races to fill and doing it alone would be a bit lonely. My recommendation is to do it at least once and do it with a bunch of mates or with your family and make it half racing half social.

Attaching a location shot from stage two start in hunter. Absolutely magical morning.

hawkeye's picture

Thanks for sharing. Looks like it needs to go on the bucket list. Smiling

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