Mountain bikers across Fife and Tayside have hailed the return of a six-hour race to Pitmedden forest.
Straddling the border between Fife and Perthshire, hundreds of bikers visit the forest every week to ride on the labyrinth of natural woodland trails.
Perthshire mountain bike event company Muckmedden announced the return of the Pitmedden race, last held in 2015, as it released its programme of family-orientated events for 2019.
Bikers will race on Sunday, April 7.
The Fair City Enduro – a Halloween-themed race down the hills surrounding Perth – returns on Saturday, October 26.
Like last year’s sold-out event, it is Scotland’s only Enduro World Series (EWS) qualifier in 2019, meaning it will attract top riders from across the UK.
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Aaron Gray, from Abernethy-based Muckmedden Events, said: “Pitmedden is my local riding spot as well as the venue where we held the first Muckmedden event back in 2012 – our spiritual home.
“It is my kind of riding because the trails are so engaging. When you know your way around there’s no better place to ride than Pitmedden, but if you don’t, it’s easy to miss all the best bits. That’s the reason I held the first six hour event here, as I felt that riders were missing out on Scotland’s hidden gem.”
He said the six hour race format would test even the most experienced and fit riders.
“It’s so unrelenting, both technically and physically. You have to complete as many laps as possible within the six hours.
“There’s no point in being able to ride all the technical stuff if you can’t keep it going for six hours and likewise, it’s no good being super-fit if you can’t ride the technical terrain, so you will have to be quite a good all-round mountain biker to make the podium.”
Chris Ball, director of the Enduro World Series, said he was delighted to see the Fair City Enduro return for another year.
“Fair City Enduro is everything we love about Enduro racing. The Muckmedden team have put together a safe, fantastically well-organised event on amazing trails that, above all else, is just really fun,” he added.
Early bird discounts on both events will be available until the start of February.