What and event! UNE 12 Hours in the Piney has come and
gone. Saturday March 23 saw an
epic mountain biking event on the trails of the Armidale State Forest,
otherwise known as “The Piney”.
The new race transition area, located at the council-owned Charleston
Willows grounds, was alive with an electric atmosphere that had all competitors
and supporters raving.
The Red Bull Wings
Team was there. The girls were kept busy as they gave away their products to
anyone and everyone. Norco Bikes
and Merida Bikes had stalls and heaps of demo bikes that many people tested. There were heaps of give-aways with
Merida shirts and Shotz nutrition top of the list.
The canteen was
popular with the fantastic food from staff and parents from Drummond Memorial
Public School doing a great job.
Altitude Coffee had their van set up and kept the riders going. A real bonus this year was having Greg
Manttan from Altitude Bikes on site with his bike workshop. He was kept very busy.
The transition area
was bounded by two big green blow-up arches. One from major sponsor UNE and the other from Merida. The transition area was filled with
nerves as the various riders waited for their teammates to come in. Then it was their turn to hit the
As the event unfolded,
a few surprises appeared on the track.
At the top of Snakes and Ladders a musical duo were performing,
entertaining the riders as they went past. Later, at the very top of the rocky hill, two bag pipers
As night fell the
action continued. Riders donned
lights and continued to hit the trails.
It was quite spectacular to see the bright lights meandering over the
countryside. Some of the younger
NEMTB members set 500 multi-coloured glow sticks in the pine trees at the entry
to big dog’s den. More than 1
rider turned their lights off for a while to gaze at this magical sight!
Finally 10 pm came and
the race was over.
The 13 km track was
well received by the riders with its variety of styles. There’s plenty of rocks and roots. But at the same time there are fast and
flowy sections where riders can really pick up speed. Add to this the many structures, both wooden and rock, that
need to be negotiated. After 12
hours most riders has aching bodies and smiles on their faces.
In the end there were
202 riders that competed. This is
the 3rd year that New England Mountain Bikers (NEMTB) has run this
event and it continues to grow.
The winner in the Solo
Male division was Jason English with 16 laps of the 13 km course. Some of the teams also completed 16
laps, but Jason completed his in a quicker time to take overall bragging
rights. This victory was expected
as Jason is the current World Solo 24 Hour Champion. Sean Bekkers was 2nd (14 laps) with Anthony Bamford 3rd (11 laps).
The Solo Female winner
was Catherine Wood (12 laps) from Deidre Tully (9 laps) and Joanne Tulk (6).
The winner of the 40+
Solo men was Jamie Vogel (13 laps) from Mark Wood (12 laps) and Bill Perrottet
The Male Pairs was
hotly contested with the top 3 teams completing 16 laps. The winning team was “Red Rocket” from
“Captain Amazing and the Kundy Kid” and “No Name”. The Male 40+ Pairs was won by “AAA Downunder” (15 laps) from
“Boo Boo and Yogi”. The Mixed
Pairs was won by “Bullrouts” from “Muzza and son get it done”. Both teams completed 12 laps.
The Male Team-of-4
category was won by “Caos” (15 laps) with the Mixed team-of-4 taken out by
“Team Sorering” (15 laps). The
Male 40+ fours had two hot teams completing 16 laps with “Jacks” just pipping
“Taree Tip Riders” for the win.
Finally there were two
junior races. The full lap race
over 8 hours was taken out by “Hammerheads” (10 laps) from “Cropdusters” (9
laps) and “Smash” (9 laps). The short
kids race was a success with all the riders being named winners.
Full results can be
found on the below.
These results have been collated to reflect categories that needed to be combined based on numbers. Attached below are pdf files containing the raw results by category as per the recording package. Thank you all for your patience and consideration of the timing team as well as to all those who volunteered to help out in the timing tent. Cheers Michael.