Thursday, 9 August 2012

Dawn to Dusk

Dawn to Dusk is one of the toughest and longest Enduro events in the UK - so if you really want to test yourself and your bike then it's the one to try!

The event is set in the Vale of Neath in South Wales on the 'Walters Arena' mountainside course and has been running now for 11 years. The site itself was formerly a working open-cast mine and has been landscaped to transform it into the 16-18 mile trail used for the enduro event. Don't make the mistake of thinking that 'landscaping' is anything to do with Groundforce or Charlie Dimmock - you are guaranteed to need all your skill, strength and wits to negotiate the course and getting very wet and muddy are a given - but you wouldn't want it any other way!

Dawn to Dusk consists of four races and has classes for all levels of riders from young riders and novices to national, and even international riders, which makes it really inclusive and friendly.

1st Race - The Youth Event

The four races start with the youth event which is being held on Saturday 25th August this year.

This is a course designed specially for young riders between the ages of 10 and 16 years. It is subdivided into age ranges to give everyone a fair chance.

The different classes are:

Junior class for 10 and 11 year olds.
Intermediate class for 12 and 13 year olds.
Senior class for 14 and 15 year olds.

Although the Youth event leaves out some of the toughest sections of the course it is no walk in the park and is hard enough to test the mettle of young riders and give them a great sense of achievement when they finish.


2nd Race - The 6 Hour Race

Sunday 26th August 1pm

This is a great way to start off-road endurance racing for solo's or 2 man teams in the sportsman and clubman classes. If you have never attempted off-road racing before this is a perfect way to find out if you enjoy it - it's not too easy - it is still 6 hours after all - but it is do-able if you are a novice and you will feel fantastic as you cross the finishing line! This race, and all the others in the this Enduro series, starts with a classic Le Mans start - i.e a short run to your bike from a standing start (and as we are in that olympic season that makes it practically a triathlon - running, riding and jumping-over muddly rocks that is). The competitors will leave in classes lining up at 12.15 to warm the bikes up then switching the engine off at 12.55 ready for the standing start run!

3rd Race - The 12 Hour Race

Sunday 26th August 7am

This was the not so little acorn from which all the other races grew - it was the original and is where it all starts to get really tough and finds out what the entrants are really made of. It is for solo riders and  2 and 3 man teams across all classes.

4th Race - The 24 Hour Race

Saturday 25th August 7pm

Ok so this is the Big Boy - maybe the Uk's hardest endurance race. Solo riders and teams of up to 4 drive themselves for a whole night and a day in whatever weather the welsh mountain chooses to throw at them and really find out what they can achieve in terms of human endurance. To say it is a challenge is putting it mildly - if you make it you can call yourself King of the Mountain!
This race starts at 7pm on Saturday 25th August

The Big Bike (night) race

Saturday 25th August 7.15 pm

Ok so although it is officially 4 races for the Enduro event there is another race on the night of Saturday 25th and that is the Big Bike (night) race. This is for machines over 575cc of single or twin cylinder format and is a non championship round of the Big Bike Rally Challenge.  It starts off in the late evening on the tail of the fearless 24 hour racers as they plunge off into the night.

A Weekend To Remember

So if you are into Enduro racing and and you want to challenge yourself and see what you are really capable of, head down to Wales for the August bank holiday and give it a go.  If you want any more information go to the website for a further look.

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