Entries open for Forrest bike ride

ENTRIES have opened for one of Australia’s toughest mountain bike marathons in the Otways.

Keen endurance riders can enter Forrest’s Kona Odyssey mountain bike marathon which will be on February 16, 2013.

Organisers have altered the 100-kilometre event in its seventh year, with a new loop course starting and finishing at Forrest’s iconic MTB village.

Forrest’s Jessica Douglas finished fifth in this year’s Kona Odyssey mountain bike marathon at Forrest. Entries have opened for next year’s event.

Organiser Rapid Ascent’s general manager Sam Maffett said the loop course would make logistics easier for competitors while providing more single track than the Apollo Bay-to-Forrest course of past years.

“The new format starting and finishing in the same place will not only make race day organisation much easier for competitors,” he said.

“The change has also given us the opportunity to inject some fresh interest – and challenge – into the race.

“The 100-kilometre Kona Odyssey marathon has always been equally renowned for being one of the toughest marathons in Australia; for the sense of journey the course provides; for the ancient forest landscapes it travels through; and for the quantity and quality of the single track along its length.

“This new course does nothing but magnify all of those aspects and makes it a better ride for everyone.”

Mr Maffett said the race change would still prove challenging for riders.

“There are still plenty of thigh-busting hills,” he said.

“In fact, this course could be considered hillier, although the early unrideable hills in the original course have disappeared, reducing the congestion factor.”

The event also has 50-kilommetre and 15-kilometre events.

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