Get the diary out, it’s time to start planning what mountain biking events to enter next year.
The mountain biking scene in Ireland has exploded in recent years and great events are popping up left, right and centre to keep up with the craze. People are after something a bit more extreme and mountain biking is just the thing. From downhill, cross-country, enduro, mountainbiking marathons and everything in between, mountain biking is where it’s at this year. And with world-class events on our doorstep, there is no need to venture abroad to compete, here are eight of the best mountain biking events in Ireland for 2018.
1. Biking Blitz
Date: 11 Feb, 25 Feb, 11 March, 25 March 2018
The Biking Blitz series offers mountain bike races for all levels – from juniors to adults to hard-core bikers! Kicking off the 2018 biking season with a bang, the first event will be held in Ballinastoe, Co Wicklow, and will offer 14km and 28km races. There are two categories to choose from; Baggy Shorts and Super PRO. Racers will then battle it out in Ballyhoura, Limerick (26 Feb – 17km and 35km), Derroura, Galway (11 March – 16km and 32km) and Ticknock, Dublin (25 March – 14km and 28km). The overall winners will be crowned King and Queen of the Irish mountain bike trails centres.
More info: Biking Blitz
2. Gravity Enduro
Dates: 21-22 April, 19-20 May, 16-17 June, 4-5 Aug, 8-9 Sep 2018
The Gravity Enduro Series is the original national Enduro series in Ireland offering a series of five (possibly six in 2018) two-day events held across the country. This year’s locations include Ballinastoe, Mt Leinster, Ticknock, Ballyhoura, and Djouce. Gravity Enduro combines cross-country riding and the technique of downhill racing. Courses are approximately 25km long and include five mainly downhill ‘special stages’ running simultaneously. The downhill sections are timed. The 2018 season is set to include new age categories to align with the Enduro World Series, the return of Ballyhoura to the calendar, a new hardtail class, plus the possibility of two women’s categories.
More info: Gravity Enduro
3. Emerald Enduro
Date: TBC May 2018
The Emerald Enduro is the Irish leg of Enduro World series. Presented by Biking.ie, the event brings some of the best riders in the world to our shores to take on six timed technical downhill stages in the rally style format. It covers a distance of 46km on Wicklow’s Carrick Mountains and is always a great weekend out!
More info: Emerald Enduro
4. Irish Cross Country NPS
Date: TBC 2018
The Irish Cross Country National Points Series is always worth signing up for if you are looking to really compete. It holds five events in the season, across the country in Tracton Woods, Slade Valley, Ticknock, Bellurgan Estate and Union Wood.
More info: Irish XC NPS
5. Da Cooley Thriller
Date: TBC August 2018
Da Cooley Thriller is not as big or as well known as others on the list, but it’s something special. The route was designed by some of the top local riders. Taking place in the Cooley Mountains in Louth. With a short course and a long course to choose from, it is the ultimate singletrack experience!
More info: DaCooley Thriller
6. Ultimate Burren MTB Challenge
Date: TBC Sept 2018
At the start of September each year, mountain bikers flock to Ballyvaughan to take on a 42km or a 70km route through the stunning Burren landscape. This event is something different if you are bored of forestry rides, this will test your skills!
More info: Ultimate Burren
7. Nire Valley Drop
Date: TBC Nov 2018
The Nire Valley Drop takes place in and around the foothills of the Comeragh Mountains and the Nire Valley, so expect stunning views and sheer drops. This cross-country mountain bike sportive event in Co Waterford will leave you foaming at the mouth.
More info: Nire Valley Drop
8. Red Bull Foxhunt
Date: TBC Oct 2018
The Red Bull Foxhunt is your chance to test your riding skills against the pros. This year it was 2x Downhill World Champion, Gee Atherton. The Foxhunt takes place in Rostrevor in Northern Ireland’s Mourne Mountains. The pro starts at the back of the pack and has to chase down and pass all of the participants. Are you fast enough to beat the elite?
More info: Red Bull Foxhunt
Like this? You should check these out: